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All of our Year 9 students at the moment are creating either digital book trailers or digital stories, and this has provided us with an excellent opportunity to talk to them about copyright legalities, Creative Commons licencing, and public domain or royalty-free links.

With instant access to millions of images and sound tracks on the internet, it is always tempting for students just to copy anything which suits what they are looking for, without them actually reading the copyright information or terms and agreements associated with those images or sounds. While many of these are free for personal use, or for in-school educational use, they are not allowed to be re-published on YouTube or Facebook or elsewhere on the internet, unless special permission has been granted by the owner.

Fortunately, there are very generous people who have created copyright-friendly music for anyone to use and re-mix, and others who allow their images and photographs to be used or altered without restrictions.  Many of these can be found by doing an advanced search in Google, and selecting ‘Free to use or share / Free to use, share or modify’ under Usage Rights. Another way to find copyright-friendly images and music is to search the websites listed on the Creative Commons website,  remembering at the same time to check the terms of use..

Creative Commons is a way of licencing a person’s work so that others can use it, but only under the conditions that the creator specifies. See the Creative Commons website for a list of the different types of licences and what the symbols represent. Students can publish their own work (if it’s legally their own) under one of the Creative Commons licences, and this then gives others the opportunity to use it without infriging copyright.

The Year 9s  have been given many links to copyright-friendly websites where they can find images, sounds and music which they can freely use and later re-publish. 

The link to all of this information can be found on the Library page in MyGrammar, under ‘Assignment Links and Libguides’

OR   go to http://libguides.brisbanegrammar.com/ and click on Copyright & Creative Commons: Ethical Use of Resources

Music image from H Varian’s Flickr photostream
Creative Commons image from M Porter’s Flickr photostream

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During the first week back this term, all Year 11 and 12 students were given an overview of useful Web 2.0 tools they can use to help them become organised, and RSS feeds were one of these.


RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication, and it refers to the ability to manage the huge quantities of information available on the web by pulling in to your feed reader (or aggregator) only the types of information that you are interested in. It does not work on static web sites though – only those which have constantly updated information. Read more about RSS feeds here.

You can set up RSS feeds on current news items or sport commentaries, book publisher information, new music releases, or other people’s blogs.

See our LibGuides page for extra details about RSS feeds, including how to set up  RSS feeds from one of our databases.

(Funnel image from http://www.flickr.com/photos/jrhode/375671790/)

Setting Up an RSS Feed