I'm exploring the world of Creative Commons, a very familiar feature on Wikipedia. Consider the following note:

Share Alike—If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same, similar or a compatible license.

I'm trying to understand the limits of this provision.

For example, let's say I find a picture of a bear that I like. However, I don't like the background, so I use photoshop to alter the background. I may be required to include a notice that I altered the image, which is still technically in the Creative Commons domain.

But suppose I create a map illustrated with a variety of images, including the Photoshopped bear. I assume I would be required to include a notice that the bear is an altered Creative Commons image. But would that image effectively pull the entire map into Creative Commons status?

If I write an ebook that contains a variety of images and text in the Creative Commons domain, would I risk losing ownership of my entire book?


The key is here:

If you alter, transform, or build upon this work

Both your map and the book are (presumably) original works that incorporate the bear image under the CC license - they do not "alter, transform, or build upon this work"; they use it.

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