Skip to Main Content

Copyright Resource Guide

A guide intended to provide information and guidance related to copyright for the FCC Community.

What are Creative Commons Licenses?

Creative Commons Licenses are a way for people who create content to let people who use content know:

1. How they may use the content: share it, change it, or sell it?

2. What they need to do when they use the content: need to give attribution or put the same Creative Commons License on a derivative work? 

The important thing to know is Creative Commons does not replace copyright. Those who put Creative Commons Licenses on their work still own the copyright for those works. Instead it is a standardized tool that allows a copyright owner to easily communication how their work may be used without granting additional permission.

How Do the Licenses Work?

Creative Commons Licenses mix and match four different conditions on how works may be used. The four main conditions are:

Attribution Attribution (by): All Licenses require those who use works to give credit to the person who created that work.

ShareAlike ShareAlike (sa): Others may make changes and distribute works, but must use the same terms when sharing a derivative work.

NonCommercial NonCommercial (nc): Works can only be used for noncommercial enterprises, which would include educational use.

NoDerivatives NoDerivatives (nd): Works may be used and distributed, but not remixed or changed in anyway. 

There is also a tool that allows creators to wave all rights they have to a work, marking it as part of the Public Domain. 

To find out if a work has a Creative Commons License, generally look where you would normally find a Copyright Statement. Then simply see what conditions need to be met in order to use that work. If you would like to use a work in a way that goes beyond the license, then you need to get permission.

For an even more in-depth look at how these licenses work, check-out the Creative Commons Licenses page: 

How Do I Find Creative Commons and other Open Resources?

Creative Commons works don't exist in one specific place, they can be found almost anywhere, but here are a few tools to help you find them more easily:

Frederick Community College prohibits discrimination against any person on the basis of age, ancestry, citizenship status, color, creed, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, genetic information, marital status, mental or physical disability, national origin, race, religious affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status in its activities, admissions, educational programs, and employment.