With proper references and credits.

Edit: I am using couple of pictures, one as an e-book cover and the rest for decorating the head of various chapters. The pictures are insignificant for the scientific e-book.

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    How are the image and the rest of your book related? Is it just a nice illustration that could have been replaced with something else or is it an integral part of the rest? Sep 21, 2021 at 6:42
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    Have you read Using CC-BY-SA images in a CC-BY-NC-SA document? It seems to me that it answers your question.
    – MadHatter
    Sep 21, 2021 at 9:16
  • I am using the images as a cover picture and as decoration for various chapters of the e-book Sep 21, 2021 at 9:29
  • @MadHatter. No I did not. Thx for hinting. After reading it, I am more into saying that I am allowed to use the images in the e-book since the e-book it-self is not a derivative of the any of the images. Sep 21, 2021 at 9:51
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    Does the linked question tell you what you wanted to know, or do you have any residual questions?
    – MadHatter
    Sep 21, 2021 at 10:39

1 Answer 1


No, you cannot put additional restrictions on the picture, and re-licensing it with a 'non-commercial' restriction would be incompatible with the 'share alike' in the CC BY SA 4.0 terms. The definition of 'Adapted Material' in the license language of CC BY SA 4.0 is very broad. Your book would be 'Adapted Material' according to the license terms and therefore would need to be following the 'share alike' requirement, so with the same license or any of the compatible licenses. Please see also the FAQ.

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    I am using the pictures as a book cover and decoration for various chapters in the e-book. According to your answer, I either need to degrade the license to CC BY-SA or replace these (quite insignificant) pictures with own taken pictures. Sep 21, 2021 at 9:33
  • after reading the following thread: opensource.stackexchange.com/questions/9216/…, I am not so fully sure since the e-book "as a whole" is not yet a derivative of any of the images Sep 21, 2021 at 9:51
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    I really appreciate your effort of doing it right and understanding the legal situation. The case "Drauglis v. Kappa Map Group, LLC" mentioned in the other thread linked above refers to pictures licensed under CC-BY-SA-2.0 which includes the concept of 'Collective Work', and this was imho applied by the judge in the court case. 'Collective Work' has disappeared in CC-BY-SA-4.0, so your situation now is not fully comparable. Sep 21, 2021 at 10:48

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