Creative Commons


Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making it easier for people to share and build upon the work of others, consistent with the rules of copyright. CC’s vision is nothing less than realizing the full potential of the Internet — universal access to research and education, full participation in culture — to drive a new era of development, growth, and productivity.

Now ten years old, Creative Commons develops and maintains public copyright licenses and public domain instruments that are used by individuals, cultural, educational, and research institutions, governments, and companies worldwide to overcome barriers to sharing and innovation.

CC licenses and public domain tools are easy to understand and use, with 1) a human-readable deed that simplifies the terms of each license into a few universal icons and non-technical language, 2) lawyer-readable legal text, which has been vetted by a global team of legal experts, and 3) machine-readable code that enables search and discovery via search engines like Google. There are over 500 million CC-licensed works available on the web.

CC operates globally with an international affiliate network consisting of over 100 volunteers working in over 70 jurisdictions. Over 2,800 journals releasing articles under Creative Commons (over half of which use the CC BY license), and thousands of academic researchers publish scholarly articles, datasets and educational materials under CC.