For the last few years, I have released and shared my photographic creations under an Creative Commons Attribution License. I wanted others to use my images for their creative projects whether that was a blog post of another piece of art. I know that many others want decent images to use on their blogs but either doesn’t have a camera or are not happy with their own results. Most of what I released under the CC BY-NC 4.0 license is stuff that I didn’t feel I could sell and in any case the license doesn’t prevent me from using these images commercially since I retained my rights as the original creator. If someone used my image the license would require the inclusion of a byline, attributing me as the original creator. In some small way, if my images were used, I was getting a small bit of exposure as a photographer.
But recently I have started to release some of my images under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0), a public domain license.
The person who associated a work with this deed has dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighbouring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.
The gist of the CC0 is that I am relinquishing all rights to the images, including the attribution and asking for payment. For some photographers, this is a scary idea. It means relinquishing control. Yikes.
But when I look through my Lightroom image catalogue I see many relatively high-quality images gathering “digital” rust. They serve no purpose and truth be told I could just delete these from my catalogue and nothing would be lost. Or … or I could process the images and give them away. After all, I get to choose.