I downloaded a audio clip licensed under Attribution 3.0 (it literally just said "license: Attribution 3.0"). I am using this in a JavaScript game. Where should the attribution go? Can I do it inline with the source code or is it normally put in the readme file?

When I downloaded the file its name was quite long with awkward characters (like my~sound_example.com-32423111.wav). I renamed it to my_sound.wav. When attributing is the original filename, current filename or the intended title by the author used?

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    It seem likely to me that this is a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 licence, commonly called CC BY 3.0. Could you read this question and let us know if it tells you what you need to know, or if not, what questions remain?
    – MadHatter
    Oct 20, 2021 at 9:39
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    Attribution literally means that you have to tell your users about the contributions other people made. MadHatter's link explains that well. But besides that ask yourself this question: Do you think it is adequate attribution if you created a sound or song, if people would have to read the source code of a game to see that it was your creation they hear during playing, without any indication in the 'about' or 'credits' section of the game. Thus would one assume it's your work and not the one of the author distributing the game? Oct 20, 2021 at 10:46
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    More generally: be generous in your praise and acknowledgements when you benefited from advice, from contributed assets or code. It does not cost you anything. And it can help you and your users, and may make you new friends. Don't be petty or a jerk about acknowledging other peoples work. We all stand on the shoulders of giants Oct 20, 2021 at 10:49
  • "Do you think it is adequate attribution if you created a sound or song, if people would have to read the source code" No of course I don't. Hence this question. How do I attribute it? I'm not asking for a bunch of theory, just where should attribution go?
    – hotwisp
    Oct 20, 2021 at 11:12
  • @MadHatter a lot of information on this site tends to be very theoretical. Is there an example I can see of how attribution was done for a short audio clip that plays when a button is pressed?
    – hotwisp
    Oct 20, 2021 at 11:46

1 Answer 1


There is no single hard and fast rule. Here is what the license has to say about attribution:

If You Distribute, or Publicly Perform the Work or any Adaptations or Collections, You must, unless a request has been made pursuant to Section 4(a), keep intact all copyright notices for the Work and provide, reasonable to the medium or means You are utilizing: (i) the name of the Original Author (or pseudonym, if applicable) if supplied, and/or if the Original Author and/or Licensor designate another party or parties (e.g., a sponsor institute, publishing entity, journal) for attribution ("Attribution Parties") in Licensor's copyright notice, terms of service or by other reasonable means, the name of such party or parties; (ii) the title of the Work if supplied; (iii) to the extent reasonably practicable, the URI, if any, that Licensor specifies to be associated with the Work, unless such URI does not refer to the copyright notice or licensing information for the Work; and (iv) , consistent with Section 3(b), in the case of an Adaptation, a credit identifying the use of the Work in the Adaptation (e.g., "French translation of the Work by Original Author," or "Screenplay based on original Work by Original Author"). The credit required by this Section 4 (b) may be implemented in any reasonable manner; provided, however, that in the case of a Adaptation or Collection, at a minimum such credit will appear, if a credit for all contributing authors of the Adaptation or Collection appears, then as part of these credits and in a manner at least as prominent as the credits for the other contributing authors. For the avoidance of doubt, You may only use the credit required by this Section for the purpose of attribution in the manner set out above and, by exercising Your rights under this License, You may not implicitly or explicitly assert or imply any connection with, sponsorship or endorsement by the Original Author, Licensor and/or Attribution Parties, as appropriate, of You or Your use of the Work, without the separate, express prior written permission of the Original Author, Licensor and/or Attribution Parties.

So, if your game has a credits screen, then you must at least credit the author on that screen. Similarly, if you have a list of contributors in the manual or in other auxiliary materials (such as a readme file), you must include attribution there. If you don't have any credits whatsoever, then this requirement doesn't specifically attach, but you still have to give attribution in some "reasonable" fashion. For example, you might put a file in the installation folder, or you might display a notice on startup. Exactly what counts as "reasonable" will vary depending on the specifics of your game and how you are distributing it. In general, it's usually a good idea to err on the side of greater visibility, where reasonable, so as to avoid disputes with the original author.

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