Last week SpaceX posted its photos to Flickr and released them to the public domain. Unfortunately for the company, Flickr didn’t have any public domain designation they could use, so even though SpaceX founder Elon Musk said the photos were public domain, the images were shared under a Creative Commons license that required attribution.
That has now changed. Flickr announced yesterday that it has created two new options for members in the copyright dropdown panel: public domain and CC0, which allows users to release content to the public domain.
The Public Domain option lets you upload photos to Flickr that don’t have any known copyright restrictions — photos from a century ago, for example. The CC0 option lets you upload your own copyrighted photos but release copyright entirely, putting the photos in the public domain.
Both options allow for unrestricted usage of images with absolutely no strings attached. Anyone would be able to find and use the images for any purpose, edited or not, commercial or not, and attributed or not.
And yes, Musk has made good on his statement and all SpaceX photos are now properly labeled as public domain:
You can read more about the Public Domain mark and the CC0 designation to have a better idea of what they mean and how they work. The default setting on all Flickr uploads is still All Rights Reserved, but you can also change your default to Public Domain or CC0 now if you wish.