Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge through free legal tools. Creative Commons licenses are not an alternative to copyright. They work alongside copyright and enable you to modify your copyright terms to best suit your needs. -- From Creative Commons website
A Creative Commons license lets creators decide which rights they would like to keep, and it clearly conveys to those using their work how they’re permitted to use it without asking the creator in advance. Ideally, OER content includes the least restrictive Creative Commons license, CC-BY, which only requires proper attribution. Users are otherwise permitted to copy, distribute, and adapt the work as they like.
Tammy Ravas, Visual and Performing Arts Librarian and Media Coordinator, provides excellent additional information about Creative Commons and copyright issues in her library guides: Public Domain and Creative Commons: A Guide to Works You Can Use Freely and Copyright Issues and Resources.
This page on the University of Montana (UM) Library Research Guide on Open Educational Resources (OER) by Wendy Walker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. This page is a modified version of a page from a guide created by Doralyn Rossman at Montana State University.