It is up to copyright holders to decide on how a work is licenced. In the case of the books that are included in the KU Open Access collections, the copyright resides with the author who has come to an agreement with their publisher about which CC licence they would like to have applied to their work.

Creative Commons licences are being used worldwide for hundreds of millions of works. The majority of licences applied to KU books so far allow for non-commercial reuse only with attribution. This means that publishers are able to generate additional income by publishing and distributing the book through commercial channels in other formats. This has helped to keep the cost of the Title Fees for KU titles lower than they might otherwise be. Third parties wishing to commercialise an NC-licenced book are free to enter into negotiations with the publisher for a defined set of rights. 

Many of the authors who agreed to the inclusion of their books have also indicated that they are not comfortable with granting a blanket licence allowing others to alter or adapt their work. In order to protect the integrity of their work a ‘No-Derivatives’ or ND licence has often been selected by the author. This licence restriction simply means that the authors would like down-stream users to seek permission before creating derivative works. One book in the second collection is available on a licence which allows for redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as it is passed along unchanged. Another book is available on a licence that lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon the work, even commercially, as long as credit is given for the original creation. For more information about the suite of Creative Commons licences, see www.creativecommons.org.

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