Creative Commons Licences

There are a number of different types of Creative Commons licences. These open access licences remove some of the restrictions applied by copyright law, so that content published under them may be used without permission in certain conditions. These conditions are indicated by initials in the licence titles:

  • BY – reuse is only allowed if the original work is appropriately credited
  • NC – reuse is only allowed for non-commercial purposes
  • ND – reuse is only allowed of the work in its entirety – no portions or edits
  • SA – reuse is only allowed if the new work is made available under the same license as the original

There are six main types of Creative Commons licenses. The list below sets out whether you need to obtain permission to reuse work published under any of these licences. Please note that a full citation, including the licence under which the content was originally published (and a link to that licence) must be included whether or not permission is required.

Can I reuse without permission?

  • CC BY – This licence lets others distribute, remix, tweak and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation
    • Yes, you can reuse without permission
  • CC BY-SA – This licence lets others remix, tweak and build upon your work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms
    • Yes, provided the content is then made available under the same licence
  • CC BY-NC – This licence lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, they don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms
    • Yes, for non-commercial use
    • No for commercial use (including publishing in journals/ebooks)
  • CC BY-ND – This licence allows for redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as it is passed along unchanged and in whole, with credit to you
    • Yes, provided it is the entire work that is reproduced
  • CC BY-NC-SA  This licence lets others remix, tweak and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms
    • Yes, for non-commercial use, provided the content is then made available under the same licence
    • No for commercial use (including publishing in journals/ebooks)
  • CC BY-NC-SD This licence only allows others to download your works and share them with others as long as they credit you, but they can’t change them in any way or use them commercially
    • Yes, for non-commercial use, provided it is the entire work that is reproduced
    • No for commercial use (including publishing in journals/ebooks)

For the full terms and conditions, please visit the Creative Commons Website