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What is Creative Commons?

Have you ever wondered if you want to share your works online, but you want anyone who adapt, use, or remix your content easily and just put the appropriate attribution to you as the creator? Or are you curious if your works are protected after you shared it in the Internet? Do you know that there’s a license which you make your online life easier when you want to use other people works and remix into your content?

The answer is Creative Commons. Basically, Creative Commons (CC) is a an alternative license which useful for the creator to share and grant their works to another people beyond what the traditional copyright can do. We can share our works easily and CC provide many available options that can be tailored for the creators like us.

Explanation of Creative Commons license by Creative Commons New Zealand (CC Kiwi), via YouTube
Creative Commons license spectrum from public domain to all right reserved by Shaddim via Wikimedia Commons, licensed CC-BY-SA 4.0

The idea arose when Lawrence Lessig recognized there are some problem between what technology can do and the copyright restriction. When the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA) was enacted in 1998 or it was known as the Mickey Mouse Protection Act, long story short, the copyright extension idea came just before the Mickey Mouse copyright would have expired. The CTEA extended the copyright for an additional 20 years! It was too long for the creation that already provided beneficial since long time ago for the creator or owner.

Between 2002-2003, Lawrence Lessig, a Stanford Law Professor represented Eric Eldred to challenge the CTEA law, this case was known as Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186. Lawrence argued that the law unconstitutional because of the copyright had been continually extended with the previous acts, but sadly they lost their battle.

Works ofProtected byCopyright expired on
19201909 Copyright ActJanuary 1, 1977
19211976 Copyright ActJanuary 1, 1997
19221976 Copyright ActJanuary 1, 1998
1923Copyright Term Extension ActJanuary 1, 2019
List of the Copyright Acts that extended the works or creation from the article of “Copyright Term Extension Act” in Wikipedia, CC-BY-SA 3.0

In 2002, Lawrence Lessig and several people created a non-profit organization Creative Commons. Creative Commons addressed the licenses issues of creative works collaboration via internet. They published a set of free and public licenses that want to share their work under “some rights reserved” instead of “all rights reserved”. As we already knew, if you make something you will automatically get the copyright of your works, so this alternative license easily famous as they online community also grew up drastically. This license also works within the existing copyright law.

An example of CC Search result about Indonesian related pictures via CC Search. Licensed CC-BY-SA 4.0

Besides Creative Commons, you will find several open license that you can use, but Creative Commons license makes sure that its license is up to date – 4.0 is the latest version – and it is used and recognized widely by various institution, creators, website (including Wikipedia, and YouTube). You can find easily CC works because their collection is more than 1.6 billion! You can find the collection via search engine or the CC Search, a subdomain that is managed by Creative Commons Organization. You can find more than 300 million images in there! They also plan to add open texts and audio in their search engine.

If you are really interested to join the movements, you can browse about the organization and movements in creativecommons.org. You can learn about the most suitable license for your works in this page, it is available in Indonesian too! They also have the Creative Commons Global Networks, a website that dedicate for any CC supporters, including advocates, activists, artists, organizations etc. If you want to join to the local chapter, you can browse the full list of countries chapters, if you are Indonesian, please do browse this page and visit the Indonesian chapter official page; you can access a lot of useful contents in Indonesian. See you around and let’s share our works using the Creative Commons License.

“What is Creative Commons?” is a derivative of the June 2020 Creative Commons Certificate Course by Creative Commons, licensed CC BY 4.0 licensed CC BY 4.0. Biyanto Rebin adapted content from the Creative Commons Certificate Course Unit 1 on “What Is Creative Commons”.

Lisensi Creative Commons
CC-BY 4.0

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