Art of copying

While using the work of others keep in mind following points related to copyrights.

  • When a work is in the public domain, it is free for use by anyone for any purpose without restriction under copyright law.
  • All jurisdictions allow some uses of copyrighted material without permission. Examples of fair use include commentary, criticism, news reporting, research, teaching, library archiving and scholarship. These usage rights are independent from the license and are not affected or changed in any way.
  • In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:
  1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
  2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

Important NoteWe must … look to the nature and objects of the selections made, the quantity and value of the materials used, and the degree in which the use may prejudice the sale, or diminish the profits, or supersede the objects, of the original work.

The rights of the licensor

  • The licensor has the right to request removal of their name from a work when used in a derivative or collective they don’t like.
  • Copyright laws in most jurisdictions around the world grant creators “moral rights” which may provide some redress if a derivative work represents a “derogatory treatment” of the licensor’s work.
  • Publicity rights allow individuals to control how their voice, image or likeness is used for commercial purposes in public. Important when transmitting content of anyone other than yourself. This is a distinct and separate obligation from obtaining the copyright license for the works itself, which only gives you a license from the author (or photographer) but not from the subjects.

Creative Commons Licenses

A Creative Commons license does not waive or otherwise affect the publicity rights of subjects . These licenses may be applied to all work falling under copyright, including: books, plays, movies, music, articles, photographs, blogs, and websites and not for software

Commonly used CC licenses

For example, the Creative Commons Attribution (BY) license allows one to share and remix (create derivative works), even for commercial use, so long as attribution is given.


  • Include any copyright notices (If the work itself contains any copyright notices)
  • Cite the author’s name, screen name, or user ID, etc. If the work is being published on the Internet, it is nice to link that name to the person’s profile page, if such a page exists.
  • Cite the work’s title or name (if applicable). If the work is being published on the Internet, it is nice to link the name or title directly to the original work.
  • Cite the specific CC license the work is under (optional). If the work is being published on the Internet, it is nice if the license citation links to the license on the CC website.
  • Mention if the work is a derivative work or adaptation, in addition to the above, one needs to identify that their work is a derivative work i.e., “This is a Finnish translation of [original work] by [author].” or “Screenplay based on [original work] by [author].”

About Wiki

Wiki communities believe that content should be free. The slogan of the Mediawiki software, which runs all the projects of the Wikimedia foundation, encapsulates this spirit :

Ideas want to be free.

Wiki software is often cited as an example of social software because of the ease with which users can work together on content, building a real sense of community.



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