This spring I ventured out and spent a day capturing some of the robust graffiti scene here in Vancouver. The results of that ended up in my "To The World" video. As work got underway I needed to source some copyright free, royalty free sound or music track that I could use. I did not want to come to the attention of the US music industry!
This humorous, tongue in cheek video from the YouTube help centre on copyrights referred me to a couple of sites where I could get license free source audio.
It also introduced me to the Creative Commons website. This non-profit organization is all about allowing people to share their creativity yet still have some control over how their creations are used.
As I move into the online world, I want to not only respect the rights of other to have their works protected and I also want to ensure that my own works are respected as well. The Creative Commons reconfirmed the usage rights that I have on my main web site. In essence, if you publish a work and say it is copyrighted and that all rights are reserved, it is protected ... period! A Creative Commons license allows me to specify if and how my works may be used by others.
For example, I can require attribution which will let others copy, distribute, display, and perform my copyrighted work — and derivative works based upon it — but only if they give credit the way I request. Or I can let others copy, distribute, display, and perform only verbatim copies of my work, but not create derivative works. I can also specify noncommercial use which means no one else can make money from my work.
Or at least that is the idea. The reality is that if someone does use your work, how much trouble are you willing to go to to protect it? How much money and or time are you willing to invest. The Creative Commons license framework, just like all license frameworks (i.e. copyright), work only as long as it is honoured.