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RU: Finding and Using Free-Use Online Content

Looking for free images, sound, music or video to use in your PowerPoint, e-Learning video or other digital projects? Curated here is a list of databases containing free content. Check the license terms before use.

Types of Licenses

Licenses can vary from source to source e.g. Pexels has its own Pexels license. Please check each source for Terms of Use or License Terms. 

The most common open content license you might encounter are the Creative Commons licenses. 

Here is a breakdown of the Creative Commons Licenses from  "About the Licenses" website from Creative Commons licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license

License Type 

Description

 

License Deed
CC0
Public Domain

No copyright or legal restrictions because copyright in the work has expired or author has dedicated the work to the public domain. 

For more information about the difference between Public Domain and CC0, please refer to this FAQ.

 

CC0 "No Rights Reserved"

CC0 enables scientists, educators, artists and other creators and owners of copyright- or database-protected content to waive those interests in their works and thereby place them as completely as possible in the public domain, so that others may freely build upon, enhance and reuse the works for any purposes without restriction under copyright or database law.

In contrast to CC’s licenses that allow copyright holders to choose from a range of permissions while retaining their copyright, CC0 empowers yet another choice altogether – the choice to opt out of copyright and database protection, and the exclusive rights automatically granted to creators – the “no rights reserved” alternative to our licenses.

View License Deed

Attribution
CC BY

This license lets others distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.

View License Deed | View Legal Code

Attribution-ShareAlike
CC BY-SA

This license lets others remix, adapt, and build upon your work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to “copyleft” free and open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use. This is the license used by Wikipedia, and is recommended for materials that would benefit from incorporating content from Wikipedia and similarly licensed projects.

 

View License Deed | View Legal Code

Attribution-NoDerivs
CC BY-ND

This license lets others reuse the work for any purpose, including commercially; however, it cannot be shared with others in adapted form, and credit must be provided to you. View License Deed | View Legal Code

Attribution-NonCommercial
CC BY-NC

This license lets others remix, adapt, and build upon your work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, they don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms. View License Deed | View Legal Code

Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike
CC BY-NC-SA

This license lets others remix, adapt, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms.

View License Deed | View Legal Code

Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs
CC BY-NC-ND

This license is the most restrictive of our six main licenses, only allowing others to download your works and share them with others as long as they credit you, but they can’t change them in any way or use them commercially. View License Deed | View Legal Code

Logos by Creative Commons used above in the public domain see CC0, CC-BY, CC-BY-SA, CC-BY-NC, CC-BY-NC-SA, CC-BY-ND, CC-BY-NC-ND.