Creative Commons and Copyright

Creative Commons

“It can be that easy when you skip the intermediaries”


In 2001, The White Stripes released an album titled “White Blood Cells”. Steve MacDonald of Redd Kross, took that album, added base, and re-released it changing the title to “Redd Blood Cells”.  He started this, without consent from Jack or Meg White, but later they assured him they were okay with it. So how do we, as normal people get consent to modify or use an artist’s content without just randomly bumping into them as Steve did?

Everyone’s seen the big ‘C’ for ‘Copyright’. It means ‘All rights reserved’. It means ‘don’t use or change this without permission’. It means ‘if you do, I could get you in trouble’.

By the late 1980’s the U.S. law decided that all works should become copyrighted as soon as they were created. Of course, some artists were happy about this; but what about the rest of us? The one’s who’s jobs depended on gathering resources, mixing songs, using other people’s content to promote or create our own? Suddenly, all doodles and simple made up melody’s were stamped with the big ‘C’.

Creative Commons is the easy way out. It’s for artists who need something but don’t want to use a lawyer to get it. It’s not meant to compete with Copyright, but to work with it. Not all artists mind if their work is being used for other purposes and ‘CC’ offers the in between of free-for-all and not-at-all.

The double ‘CC’ is for Creative Commons. It means ‘Some rights reserved’. It means ‘you have permission’. It means ‘use it, but don’t call it yours’.

Hear it in Creative Common’s own words.

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