Adding a Creative Commons License to Your WordPress Blog

CreativeCommons Header

imageI was reading Blog Copies Posts Verbatim and Passes Them Off as Their Own from Woman at Mile 0, and I realized it was probably time to add a license of some kind for my content. I have had a couple of sites copy link and summarize my content, but I notice that they have given proper credit that the original content was found on my blog.

So I was thinking, with all this wonderful content that I have been amassing, it might be time to add some type of License. Whenever I use content, I ensure that I give proper credit to the linking source and the original source if they are separate. I notice some bloggers will say they found <original content> [via], with the via containing a link to the source that where the found the original content. Personally this doesn’t work for me, the linking source where the content was found should receive full credit, not some type of [via] link that honestly I won’t click. I think giving credit to your sources is not only the proper thing to do, but is good karma. Not sullying your karma on an issue as lame as not not attributing your sources.

I looked at the Creative Commons License web site, and I found instructions to add the commons license to Blogger, Moveable Type and Typepad, but not WordPress. So I figured I would ‘get er done’ and just do it myself. Have additional questions, check the FAQ for the Creative Commons License. There is also some quick code and logos on the WordPrss site that can be added to your blog.

Add the Creative Commons License to blog hosted on

  • Access the Creative Commons License Website with your Web browser –
  • Click License Your Work in the Header on the front page of the Website.
  • Select the options for the license you would like to create, and then click Select a License. If you would like more information about any of the options, click more info.


  • Now you can select the logo that you would like to appear on your blog, and copy the appropriate code.


  • After selecting the license to display on your blog, copy the code for the logo and the link. Click the cursor in the Copy the text below field, and enter <Ctrl> A to select all the text, and the <Ctrl> C to copy the text. You can also click emailed to yourself to have the content sent to an email address.
    After you have selected the text you will need to copy to your WordPress blog. You will add this to a text widget to display in one of the columns on your blog. For additional information on the text widget, you can check Using the text widget on WordPress.
  • In your WordPress Dashboard, click the Presentation menu, and then click the Widgets tab.
    I highlighted the Widgets tab, and one of the Text widgets.


  • Click Configure in the Text widget. This will display the text box.
  • Click in the text box, and enter <Ctrl> V to add the Creative Comments License to this box.


  • After you have added the license content, close the box, and then click Save Changes on the Widget Tab.
  • Now click View Site, to verify that your page displays correctly.


Note that the heading is ‘teh statement,’ the misspelling of ‘the’ is intentional, and is an inside joke to the technically elite crowd. This shows that I too am in the know, and not just a bad speller.

  • You are now licensed using the Creative Commons License, pat yourself on the back and feel the satisfaction of a job well done.

Additional Information

I am using a three column format for my blog, and I added the license to the bottom left column. I also have the statement:

All postings on this blog are provided “AS IS” with no warranties, and confer no rights. All entries in this blog are my opinion and don’t necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer.

To ensure that readers understand that although I work for Microsoft, I do not speak for Microsoft.

When it comes time to add a license, you might want to take a look at the Creative Commons License. This allows others to use your content, but states they must give you credit.

45 Responses to “Adding a Creative Commons License to Your WordPress Blog”

  1. Opal: Vegan Momma Says:

    Excellent tutorial I love seeing a walk through. Although I rare need one to figure something out (my brain can usually figure it out) there are many that do.

    I learned that very quickly in my corporate days (Database Analyst, Senior.) I created many user-friendly manuals so the nurses and their support staff would be able to use the databases I created. I wore many different hats in that position. 😉

  2. Opal: Vegan Momma Says:

    One other thing to check out the sites that have been pinging your posts. Check the way they are set up your most recent ping specifically. It’s obviously a splog since they profit from other bloggers hard work.

    They have Google Adsense on their site along with redirects to Amazon. Splogs are talked about extensively throughout the net. A splog visited me yesterday, same one that was here, I checked out their website thoroughly and banned them from my website and deleted their ping.

    I occasionally get them and after I review their site if it looks as though they are a splog I mark their ping as “spam” and ban them from my site. I know banning doesn’t always stop them, frequently it doesn’t but I do it anyway.

    If Google finds about out about that site I have a feeling, it will be looked at as “spam”. There was a discussion about this on Matt Cutts (head of Google’s webspam team) blog and a website that appeared to be doing something similar lost it’s indexing with Google.

  3. Thomas Says:

    Opal – Being a content developer, I am huge on knowledge transfer. What good is all that information if you can’t give it to other people. Creating manuals is one of the methods for doing this – being able to create a manual that people can actually use is part art. It does not surprise me that you did technical writing.

    I am still trying to figure out how I feel about sploggers. I am not currently trying to make money off of my site, and if I am given credit . . . well, I’m not sure. This is a topic I will need to work out in my head. I would probably feel differently if I was trying to monetize my blog and it seemed they were taking money away from me.

    At this point my focus is to build community, and become a Technical Evangelist, and my blog is one of the tools I use to reach that goal.

  4. Opal: Vegan Momma Says:

    It annoyed me long before I started monetizing, lol. One of the comments I have heard from webmasters that have been doing it a lot longer than I am that some of these blogs rank higher theirs and it’s based on splogging.

    Also if I follow correctly Google decides which is more relevant I imagine that could be more annoying if the splog ranked higher than you based on your own content, lol.

    That can be frustrating especially if you spend hours writing that content to appear on your website for some that is how they make their money I’m just experimenting, lol.

    I still have a lot to learn about being a “web master” I never saw myself like that but here I am gradually picking up on the lingo, lol. I’m happier writing and interacting with others and forgetting about the SEO stuff.

    I enjoyed writing, and I saw myself getting back into it through my tech blog.

  5. Free as in Time » Blog Archive » Wordpress Wednesday 18/07/2007 Says:

    […] Adding a Creative Commons License to Your WordPress Blog – Something I ought to get around to doing. I looked at the Creative Commons License web site, and I found instructions to add the commons license to Blogger, Moveable Type and Typepad, but not WordPress. So I figured I would ‘get er done’ and just do it myself. Have additional questions, check the FAQ for the Creative Commons License. There is also some quick code and logos on the WordPrss site that can be added to your blog. […]

  6. Talking Creatively About Education 2.0 » So You Like Copyright, eh? Says:

    […] to the instructions that ‘Thomas’ has put on his blog. Again, hit the link and learn just how easy it is to add Creative Commons licensing to your work in wordpress! This work, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons […]

  7. Idetrorce Says:

    very interesting, but I don’t agree with you

  8. Thomas Says:

    Idetrorce – Why don’t you agree? Using the Creative Commons license doesn’t keep others from using your content, they just have to give you credit. Also I have mine set up so others can’t use my content for commericial purposes, why don’t you agree with that?

  9. Abhijit Says:

    A really wonderful post. I wanted to do something like this from a long time. I have one trouble in doing so. The small image never gets displayed. It is always replaced by the alternative text, however I try. Even in a text widget, and even in a post. What seems to be the problem?

  10. » Blog Archive » New License Says:

    […] to me and don’t make any modifications. Check out this link for more information. Thanks, Thomas, for writing an awesome article on how to set this […]

  11. RaiulBaztepo Says:

    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language 😉
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

  12. Mayank Mishra Says:

    thanks. It helped a lot.

  13. mssmotorrd Says:

    It’s the first time I commented here and I must say you share us genuine, and quality information for bloggers! Good job.
    p.s. You have a very good template for your blog. Where did you find it?

  14. Madhat Alsoos Says:

    thanks it is very usefull

  15. Susan Says:

    Thanks for this. As a new blogger, I really appreciate the tutorial. Happy Blogging!

  16. storydoula Says:

    Thank you for this tutorial! So helpful and I will share it with my students. Paulette Moore

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  26. Arief Mardianto Says:

    Much sentences this tutorial is not related for new appearance on, So you must adapted for new experience 🙂 Good luck 🙂

  27. katchyakitchen Says:

    Thank you for your post!! It was very helpful and I already included the CC in my new blog thanks to you!

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  31. vj Says:

    Hi thomas,

    The information was helpful.


  32. Nemesis Brown. Says:

    Thank you!! I tried for ages to work out how you added a CCL and just couldn’t understand their instructions. Thank you for making it easy and for helping it to finally appear on my page!
    Happy hugs your way.x.

  33. giosdesk Says:

    Thank you! this is very helpful!

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  35. ronjamoss Says:

    Thank you so much! This was so helpful for my school work!

  36. nurulthecook Says:

    Thanks for the info! I still can’t decide which cc license to use though…

  37. F104starfighter Says:

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  42. Wordpress 16/07/2007 - | Malta Says:

    […] Adding a Creative Commons License to Your WordPress Blog By Thomas I looked at the Creative Commons License web site, and I found instructions to add the commons license to Blogger, Moveable Type and Typepad, but not WordPress. So I figured I would ‘get er done’ and just do it myself. … Thomas – Technical Blogger – […]

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