Open licenses: Creative Commons and GPL University Library

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Open licenses: Creative Commons and GPL


The advancement of information and communication technologies has meant that there is a growing number of contents protected by copyright regulations available on the Internet.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that all copyrights (copying, distribution, public communication, etc.) are still valid in the Internet environment, despite the ease with which the information can be copied or disseminated.

The Intellectual Property Law allows only a few exceptions, such as the right of appointment, illustration of the teaching ... For any other use not authorized by law, it would be necessary to obtain the express authorization of the author or author or person entitled to the rights of exploitation.

But in this digital environment, some people want to facilitate access to their works and for that, open licenses emerged, which clearly indicate what uses are allowed and under what conditions.

Faced with the system of "all rights reserved" in open licenses, the authors authorize users to make more permissive uses of their materials than those established by law.

The most common and used open licenses are:

Creative Commons

Creative Commons is an international non-profit organization that offers a range of licenses that range from the traditional copyright system to the public domain. With the Creative Commons licenses the author authorizes the use of his work, but the work continues to be protected.

The system works in the following way: the author who creates a work and wants to exploit it through the Internet chooses one of the Creative Commons licenses and, when his work is posted on the Internet, he identifies it with the Creative Commons symbol and attaches the license of use. Thus, when users access the document, they can easily identify the conditions that the author has established for the use of the work.

Creative Commons y Copyright

Its main objective is to complement the current regime of copyright, and for this purpose have developed six licenses, based on four basic conditions: recognition (attribution), non-commercialization (non-commercial), non-creation of works derivatives (do not derive works) and share equal (share alike).

There are six different license models:

Símbolos y licencias

All Creative Commons licenses require the recognition of the author of the work and, if the author wants, the source (for example, institution, publication or magazine) where it has been published must also be indicated.

These licenses are established in perpetuity, that is, the entire duration of the protection of the work. The author reserves the right, at any time, to exploit the work with another license (either Creative Commons or not), or even to withdraw it, but the previously granted license will continue in force. The Creative Commons licenses are not exclusive, so the author can grant other licenses on the same work with different conditions, but the subsequent licenses can only be granted under the non-exclusive regime.

In addition to the previous licenses, Creative Commons has created two new tools for the public domain .

If you want more information visit the official page of Creative Commons.


The FSF (Free Software Foundation) maintains and defends the GNU General Public License .

It is mainly oriented to protect the free distribution, modification and use of software and is used by most of the GNU programs and more than half of the free software packages.

Its purpose is to declare that the software covered by this license is free software and to protect it from appropriation attempts that restrict those freedoms to users.

Besides the FSF is also responsible for other licenses : the GNU General GNU (GNU LGPL) , the GNU Free Documentation License (GNU FDL) and the GNU Affero General Public License.

You can find more information on the official GNU website.