Updated Policies Page
This page features a DRAFT revision of the policies page for the CC websites. Once approved, these policies will replace the current policies page.
Summary of changes from the existing policies:
- Added brief explanation about trademarks and the purposes they serve, for context.
- Added permission in advance to change colors of the double-c logo and its background. Under our prior policy, users did not have explicit permission to change those. It became a frequent ask and we're comfortable granting this permission in advance.
- Clarity that permission isn't needed for referential use. We receive a fair number of inquiries about whether permission is needed to refer to Creative Commons in a book or article or blog post. That's all perfectly fine of course, and couldn't be controlled viatrademark in any event.
- Improved language re prohibition on using our logos with modifications of our licenses or legal tools or deeds, whether directly in the text or indirectly through terms of service. Cross reference is made to our expanded explanation and our policy here, which is already posted.
- Clarity about use of our legacy marks (for retired tools) -- that those remain subject to the policy even if retired, because works to which those have been applied remain under those terms.
DRAFT: Full text of proposed policies page below
Creative Commons maintains and publishes policies that apply to the use of our websites, content and software that we publish, our trademarks, and our affiliates. Note that some of these policies are maintained on other website pages but can be viewed by clicking on the relevant link below.
- Copyright Licensing Policy for Content and Software Code
- Creative Commons Trademark Policy
- Copyright Infringement Notification Policy
- CC Affiliate policies
Copyright Licensing Policy for Content and Software Code
Other than the Creative Commons trademarks (licensed subject to the Trademark Policy below) and the text of Creative Commons legal tools and human-readable Commons deeds (dedicated to the public domain as specified below), all content on this site is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license unless otherwise noted.
- Software: All of the software code we create is free software. Please check our code repository for the specific license that applies to software code you wish to use.
- Legal text (we call this legal code) and Commons deeds: Creative Commons makes the legal code of its licenses and the CC0 Public Domain Dedication available under the CC0 Public Domain Dedication. CC also makes the Commons deeds associated with its licenses, the CC0 Public Domain Dedication, and the Public Domain Mark available under the CC0 Public Domain Dedication. This allows anyone to reuse those texts for any purpose; however, CC reserves fully and unconditionally all trademark and branding rights associated with the licenses, the CC0 Public Domain Dedication, and deeds. See the Trademark Policy below for more detail.
Creative Commons Trademark Policy
Trademarks are words, graphic designs, or other indicia that identify the source of a product or service. Creative Commons uses a variety of trademarks. Some Creative Commons trademarks serve the purpose of (i) communicating the type of legal tool chosen by the rights holder and/or (ii) indicating that the creator has applied a Creative Commons license to her work. Our registered trademarks and other trademarks include CREATIVE COMMONS (regardless of stylization, capitalization, translation, or other presentation), CC (including the CC in a circle logo (the “CC Logo”) and CC standing alone), CC+ (within a circle or standing alone), CC0, all of the Creative Commons license and public domain buttons and icons, and any combination of the foregoing, whether integrated into a larger whole or standing alone.
You are authorized to use our trademarks subject to this Trademark Policy, and only on the further condition that you download images of the trademarks directly from our website. You are not authorized to use any modified versions of our trademarks, except that you may use a different color for the CC logo and its background so long as the two colors chosen have a contrast ratio of at least 3:1.
Creative Commons retains the right to revoke any trademark license for any reason or for no specified reason. Creative Commons is particularly likely to revoke a license if, in its sole discretion, it finds that your use of the trademark is likely to bring disrepute to Creative Commons or any of its trademarks, or confuse the public. For the avoidance of doubt, you do not need our permission to use our corporate logo for referential use (e.g., to refer to Creative Commons as an organization), provided that such use does not imply endorsement by or association with Creative Commons.
- Creative Commons Public Copyright License Marks: Creative Commons licenses the use of its public copyright license marks (a few of which are shown immediately to the right), which include the CC Logo, on the conditions that you use the marks solely to describe the Creative Commons license that applies to a particular work and include the URI or a hyperlink to the corresponding Commons deed on the Creative Commons server.
- Public Domain Dedication Marks: Creative Commons licenses the use of its public domain dedication marks (one of which is shown immediately to the right), on the conditions that you use the mark solely to describe that the CC0 Public Domain Dedication applies to a particular work and include the URI or a hyperlink to the Commons deed on the Creative Commons server.
- Public Domain Mark: Creative Commons licenses the use of its trademarked Public Domain Mark badge (shown immediately to the right) on the conditions that you use the mark solely to describe that the Creative Commons Public Domain Mark applies to a particular work and include the URI or hyperlink to the Public Domain Mark on the Creative Commons server.
- Creative Commons License Buttons and Icons: Creative Commons licenses the use of its button marks that describe a particular legal tool and its icon marks that describe a key license element (such as BY, NC, ND, and SA) on the conditions that you use the mark solely to describe the Creative Commons legal tool that applies to a particular work and include the URI or hyperlink to the relevant Commons deed on the Creative Commons server.
- Legacy marks: Creative Commons has retired some of its prior legal tools, all of which had associated trademarks, such as the Developing Nations License, the Sampling License, and Founder’s Copyright. Although these tools have been retired, they are still legally effective as to works to which they were applied. Therefore, those trademarks may only be used under the terms and conditions of this Trademark Policy. Creative Commons licenses the use of its legacy marks on the conditions that you use the mark solely to describe the Creative Commons legal tool that applies to the particular work and include the URI or hyperlink to the relevant Commons deed on the Creative Commons server. Note that legacy marks are not available for download on our website, so the condition that you must download images of the marks from our website does not apply to these marks.
- Additional permissions: In addition to the permissions granted in advance to the public as set forth above, Creative Commons may grant additional permissions upon request. Please submit any such request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Except as specifically stated above or otherwise set forth in a written agreement with you, no additional permissions are granted.
Copyright Infringement Notification Policy
If you have reason to believe that any material or activity on a site controlled or operated by Creative Commons (such as creativecommons.org, wiki.creativecommons.org, or open4us.org) is infringing the rights owned by you or someone else for whom you have authority to act, please follow our DMCA Notice & Takedown Procedure.
PLEASE NOTE: Creative Commons provides public copyright licenses and legal tools that anyone may use. We do not, however, control the use of Creative Commons licenses and legal tools, or have knowledge of whether the use of our licenses or legal tools is authorized by the copyright owner. Additionally, Creative Commons has no control over third-party websites, or over content belonging to persons or organizations other than Creative Commons. Any content hosted on a third-party website is the responsibility of those sites, and not of Creative Commons, even if the content bears a Creative Commons license or is otherwise marked with one of CC’s logos or other trademarks. If you are the copyright owner of content hosted on a third party site in an unauthorized manner, please contact the administrator of that website directly to have the content removed.