Copyright works on an 'all rights reserved' system, whereby the copyright owner automatically reserves exclusive rights to use their work, i.e. only they can copy, publish, perform, communicate (share), and adapt it. By default, you cannot reuse other people’s material (and they cannot use yours) without a permission or licence to do so. Open licences work on a 'some rights reserved' system and provide upfront permissions to use material without having to ask. The most widely used open licences are the Creative Common licences; staff and students are encouraged to source material that carries these licences. University staff are permitted to apply a Creative Commons licence to research data or to a research publication being published open access.
There are six standard Creative Commons licences which allow creators to keep their copyright while granting reuse rights to others. When using material under any of the Creative Commons licences, appropriate credit must be given to the creators.
The versions of the licences are:
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