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University of Cambridge > CARET > Intellectual Property and Copyright in the Digital Environment

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3.3.3 Are there other ways of licensing my copyright work?
As noted, you may go about licensing your copyright work any way you like.  It is a good idea to record licensing agreements in a document signed by both you (the licensor) and the person to whom you are granting the licence (the licensee).  Try to be as specific as possible and give thought to addressing factors such as:
  • Is the licence exclusive or non-exclusive?
  • Is the licence limited to certain territories in which the work is to be used / exploited. E.g. the UK, North America, the World.  Posting a work on the Internet means world rights. 
  • Is the licence for a limited period of time?
  • Is it for a specific or one-off use (e.g. the use of a photograph on a certain page of a particular brochure to be printed on or about a specified date; or the use of a photograph on a certain Internet page) or is it for ongoing, unlimited use (e.g. for any promotional or other use which the licensee may wish to employ)?  Do you require notification of the various uses of the work? 
  • Is it for a specific medium or mode of distribution, such as hardback/paperback, CD-  ROM, video, broadcast or e-version on the Internet?
  • Are there any restrictions on the way in which the copyright material may be used or presented?  For example, is it a condition that the licensee does not alter the copyright material in any way?
  • If the copyright material is to be used on the Internet, do you wish to restrict the quality of reproduction posted on the Internet?  (e.g. only a thumbnail or a limited number of pixels)
  • Are there any other restrictions on the use permitted under the licence? 
  • Are you to charge a fee?  If so, is it a flat fee or a fee calculated in some other way, such as a per annum fee, a fee per ‘hit’ on the Internet site or a per subscriber fee (for restricted access Internet sites)?
  • Do you require an indemnity / release from liability should someone sue you in relation to the licensee’s use of your work?
  • In what way do you wish for the licensee to acknowledge that the work is yours?
You may like to view the licences on offer at Creative Commons UK (www.creativecommons.org.uk) to gain a feel for terms which are often included in copyright licences.  Creative Commons is an initiative which helps authors to publish their work online while letting others know exactly what they can and can't do with the work.  Creative Commons aims to provide a fast, easy and user-friendly way to deal with copyright.  Creative Commons licences allow authors to retain the copyright but allow people to copy and distribute the work provided the author is given credit and only on the conditions specified by the author. 
If you are licensing software, you should refer to the Open Source Initiative at www.opensource.org
Information current as at 12 September 2005.
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