CC+ and CC0 give content creators more creative licensing options

Creative Commons has announced two new protocols to expand the existing licensing regime. These two protocols, CC+ and CC0 (CC Zero), expand options on both ends of the spectrum, commercial use on the one end and public domain on the other.


CC+ facilitates commercial use of content even where there are contradictory license elements like the NonCommercial element applied to content. Basically you still license your content under your usual license and where you have a NonCommercial license applied, you can use the CC+ protocol to assist people who may want to license your work commercially.

This video also has a great explanation of how copyright works so it is worth watching. The flash version of the video isn’t as clear as the Quicktime version which you can download here. You can also download the video in Ogg Theora/Vorbis format too.


This protocol introduces a level of trust to works that are released into the public domain:

CC0 is similar to what the CC public domain dedication does now. The key addition is that the assertion that content is in the public domain will be vouched for by users, so that there is a platform for reputation systems to develop. People will then be able to judge the reliability of content’s copyright status based on who has done the certifying.

(via CCZero – CC Wiki – licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license) These two protocols are answers to what many people have been asking for and it will be fascinating to see all the services that incorporate these protocols. The CC+ protocol in particular certainly reinforces the contention that Creative Commons does not equal free all the time. You can use Creative Commons licenses and still exploit your works commercially on your terms.

Published by Paul Jacobson

Enthusiast, writer, Happiness Engineer at @automattic. I take photos too. Passionate about my wife, Gina and #proudDad.

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