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NC – Non Commercial

Meaning: The work is not permitted to be used for commercial purposes.

Consequence and problem: The exclusion of commercial use is often favoured in science at first glance. However, what constitutes commercial use is often misunderstood and consequently also how extensive this exclusion is. A use is considered commercial if it is primarily geared toward remuneration or a monetary benefit (commercial is not synonymous with the earning of profits). Moreover, commercial uses are quite common both in science and in education in general: Scientific publishing and scientific events can often be considered commercial; private universities and scientific institutions operate commercially; and in education, nonprofit organisations, associations, small- and medium-sized enterprises, freelancers, self-employed persons, and other actors clearly operate in a commercial field. All of these sectors and actors would be categorically excluded from using works with licences that prohibit commercial use. Additionally, the lack of clarity and legal uncertainty in the interpretation of commercial and noncommercial use leads to the situation that the use of works is also refrained from as a precautionary measure because the noncommercial purpose is too ambiguous or not guaranteed or the expertise for a proper assessment is not available.