Many multimedia resources are protected by copyright law, meaning that in order to use them in your own work, you need to obtain permission and attribute the source. Fair Use creates limitations to copyright, allowing for copyrighted works to be used in certain ways without obtaining permission. Many works are increasingly being licensed in ways that allow for their reuse without permission. This guide will help you to do the following:
Locate multimedia resources that are licensed for reuse or in the public domain,
Use multimedia resources ethically, and in compliance with licensing requirements, and
Facilitate scholarly discourse by licensing your work for reuse.
Remember,it is still important that you read and comply with any use restrictions and that you provide proper citations for any media you use. Some of the resources listed in this guide require that you take additional steps to narrow your search to media that are in the public domain or that have a Creative Commons license.
What is a Creative Commons License?
A Creative Commons License is a special form of copyright license that is used by creators to indicate that the public may use, share, and sometimes even build upon their work. For more information, see the Creative Commons Website.
There are several kinds of CC License, some of which are more restrictive than others. Because of this, it is important to review the terms of the license for any media that you want to use. Keep in mind that if you plan to alter the work in any way (include an image in a video, for instance, or modify it using Photoshop) the license must be one that allows you to make derivatives. You can find more information about the various CC Licenses here.
Be aware of the Share-Alike license, which requires you to use a similar license in your end-product that contains the Share-Alike work.