Just a little bit of context here; I'm involved in a small research project where we want to collect images from citizen using a mobile application. These photographs are technical outdoor images and deserve the project purposes. Users are clearly explained the process and are clearly asked to share their images, along with some meta data. They can refuse of course if they don't want to participate our study.

Until then, the photos will remain internal to the project.

But in a further step, we want to make these images visible to other people through a web application so that they can tell us their feeling about them, especially if there is some public issues in their neighborhood such as waste on the ground for example.

Laws on what we can shoot in the public domain and how the photograph content is shared on the internet are extremely complex and country/region dependent and I'm really far to be a lawyer.

That's why I'd like to explore the open source licenses available today that we can use to share these photos. Then we would be able to clearly explain to the user that their images will be used with license X or Y, or even better; by giving them the choice of which license they want to apply to their photos.


In order to do this, I need to know where to look for sort of a list that is as inclusively as possible including commonly accepted open source licenses that are particularly suitable for sharing photographic content.
Do you know such kind list?

Starting from there at the bottom of the page, I can see open source licenses, but they mainly apply to software development, the best I have found for the moment is this wikipedia table:

Open source licenses summary Source; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permissive_software_license

Sorry if the question is a little bit border-lined (but I think the topic itself is a little bit blurry as well) and that's why I tried to explained the context as best as I can.

ps: I don't have enough reputation, but I wish I could add the tag [license] and/or [open-source-license] to this question.


1 Answer 1


A Creative Commons licence is the way to go:

  • Somebody took care of the legalese for you.
  • Your users will find it widely discussed

If you try to roll you own:

  • It will cost you a lawyer, or you license couldn't be as watertight as you think
  • Users can wonder what this license implies and not find easy answers online

If you copy someone else's license, you could be infringing on their copyright in the terms of the license (and if you change anything, see previous section).


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