What is Creative Commons?
Yamashita Yohei- CC on orange (BY)
When the old man said No, everybody knew they could not just come into his property and take his oranges without permission; he had a loaded gun, ready to protect and punish.
But his old lady was more open, she did not mind people coming to take some oranges because the people were hungry and they really needed some, so long as they told people where they got the juicy oranges from so that they could be known as the growers of the sweetest oranges in town.
Sometimes, the old lady did not want anybody to get the oranges from her freely and sell them to others. That was wrong and she wanted them to pass on the kindness to others. Sometimes, she did not mind them selling some oranges if it would help them feed their own families.
Sometimes, she did not want others to inter-breed her oranges so that they could come up with new breeds of sweeter varieties, this would destroy the purity of her original oranges. Sometimes, she did not mind. New varieties only meant new knowledge and improvement in science.
Sometimes, she wanted people to take and share the oranges under the same conditions that she had given them, sometimes she did not ask or mind.
And people said the old lady was as sweet as her oranges. Now that’s free promotion.
But the old man! The old man, held on to that gun, and woe unto those who trespassed.
Creative commons is like the open-minded generous lady, who despite tough rules, really does want people to benefit in one way or another.
Copyright on the other hand may be seen as a loaded gun, where one would need to ask permissions before using any work.
Both however, work very well together and in fact, complement each other. This is because creative commons is modelled on the notion that although creator have automatic copyrights to control how their work is used, some people want and can share their works freely without any individual requests for permissions. All one needs to do is use the work according to what the license tells them to do.
CC has designed some fun licences that tell you how to use such works if you see the below logos (and thereby making the sweet old lady happy). http://www.creativecommons.org