What is Creative Commons?

​Creative Commons is a non-profit organization that has released a set of free and voluntary copyright licenses. With Creative Commons licenses, creators have the choice to give up certain exclusive rights normally associated with copyright, while retaining others. There are six different licenses that provide users with different levels of freedom. For more information about the different licenses and how they work, check out our Creative Commons landing page, the Creative Commons page on licenses, and our 101 article about Sharing using Creative Commons.

How can I select a Creative Commons license for my track(s)?

After uploading a track or playlist, you can select which license you would like to release your piece of audio under on SoundCloud. You can change the license via the track's Metadata tab in it's edit page (hover over your sound and click the pen icon below the waveform) like this:

If you release all your tracks under a CC license, you'd want to look into the default settings for your licenses in the Content tab of your Settings page. No matter how this setting is configured, you can still change the license on individual sounds.

How can I find sounds licensed under Creative Commons?

We recently released advanced search features that let you select to search under CC parameters. To search for Creative Commons tracks, perform a basic search on SoundCloud, and then filter the results by Tracks only. Then, filter the results again so that you can find tracks to use or modify commercially:

How do I use tracks licensed under Creative Commons?

You can use tracks that you find on SoundCloud according to the terms provided in the license. All Creative Commons licenses require at least attribution, which means you must give credit to the original author. (A link to the track's page on SoundCloud is recommended as well).
  • Tracks that are licensed with a Non-Commercial term means that they can only be used in a non-commercial setting
  • A No-Derivatives term means that you can't create any work that is based on or incorporates the original work
  • Share-Alike term means that you must release any work that uses the original under exactly the same license.
If you follow the terms of the Creative Commons license, you do not have to ask for permission from the original creator – in fact, that's the whole point – but many creators like to see and share projects that use their work.