Task 2: Ethical use of the web

Acknowledging others work appropriately

Ethical use may include: Attribution, copyright, plagiarism

Technology Toolbox for Educators >> Copyright & Creative Commons


Attributing others work is a fundamental aspect of ethical use of web resources. However, attribution alone is NOT sufficient. You must ensure you only use others work where permission has been granted. This includes text, images and other forms of media. 


The Internet is NOT a copyright free zone!

In her blog post Creative Commons Infographic Kathleen Morris, a primary teacher in Victoria, Australia talks about how many people do not realise that can't just use an image off a website in their own work. Although Kathleen's work is targeted at primary school children, she includes links to some good resources about Copyright and Creative Commons that would also be applicable for secondary school students.



A simple definition of copyright is that when you produce creative works such as: text, images, music, computer programs, audio and video recordings, that only you, as the originator, hold the legal right to publish and reproduce your work. In Australia, there is no need for copyright registration - it is automatic. There is also no legal requirement to put a copyright notice on it. Your work will be protected as soon as it is put into a material form (Smartcopying, n.d.). However, it is good practice to identify your original work so that others know who the creator was. 

If you want to use correct APA style references the APA website has some good information in the Quick answers section on websites and how to cite something you found on a website in APA style. 


Other useful resources about copyright and Creative Commons:

Resource 2: Copyright video


An article on the WikiHow website called How to avoid plagiarism provides the following tips:

  1. Understand what plagiarism is
  2. Be familiar in the area you are talking about
  3. Restate the subject to yourself a couple of time
  4. Reference your quotes and sources
  5. When in doubt, give credit
  6. Understand some basics about copyright
  7. Understand what doesn't need to be cited 

This digital poster A magical guide to avoiding plagiarism (Hart, 2012) also provides helpful information about how to acknowledge other people's work on the web.

Creative Commons

Creative Common licenses

If you want to use images from the web look for images that display a Creative Commons (CC-BY) or GNU licence. There are a range of Creative Common licenses that you can apply to your work to enable others to reproduce and share your work without having to contact you to ask permission. Read about Creative commons licenses.