The Creative Commons site about the type of license that SE uses states what you need to include in the attribution. What is a format that can be used to quote all SE questions/answers/comments on all sites under this law?

In summary, I’m looking for something that is easy to copy paste and would be legal to use for quoting SE sites.

Note that I know very little about law, so if there is something I missed in my question please do not hesitate to point it out.


The actual text of the CC license says:

You must:

A. retain the following if it is supplied by the Licensor with the Licensed Material:

identification of the creator(s) of the Licensed Material and any others designated to receive attribution, in any reasonable manner requested by the Licensor (including by pseudonym if designated);

  • a copyright notice;
  • a notice that refers to this Public License;
  • a notice that refers to the disclaimer of warranties;
  • a URI or hyperlink to the Licensed Material to the extent reasonably practicable;

B. indicate if You modified the Licensed Material and retain an indication of any previous modifications; and

C. indicate the Licensed Material is licensed under this Public License, and include the text of, or the URI or hyperlink to, this Public License.

Thus, an appropriate notice for the above question would be:

This post from Law.StackExchange is copyright (c) 2021 by SE User "Yay". It has been released under the CC-BY-SA 4.0 license and was posted at What is the correct format for quoting a SE site?. It is provided without warranties. Anyone may reuse it by complying with the terms of the license. It has not been modified from the original.

Other formats are possible and would comply with the license requirements, but a link to the original post and one to the CC license, and a copyright notice are required.

  • Can I put this anywhere in the article where I reference a SE site? Apr 13 at 16:20
  • 1
    @Yay you can put it anywhere in the article, as long as it is clear what post it is referencing. It can be adjacent to the reference, or in a footnote or end note, or in any other appropriate place that allows a reader to easily associate the notice with the quoted content. Apr 13 at 16:26
  • While not a legal requirement, it is standard practice in most systems of citation to include a parenthetical stating "last accessed April 13, 2021" or something to that effect and to have either a clickable link or spelled out html code to the post.
    – ohwilleke
    Apr 13 at 20:47
  • 1
    @ohwilleke The license actually requires a link or URi "to the extent reasonably practicable". the access date is not, as yo9u say, legally required, but a good idea, as it helps specify the version reference, in case of later edits or changes. Apr 13 at 20:52
  • The format of the reference depends on the reference system you use - legal citations in Australia usually follow the Australian Guide to Legal Citations (a very practically named book). Whatever the format, you have to include the minimum information the licence requires.
    – Dale M
    Apr 13 at 22:00

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