Change of license for a single photo

I want to keep majority of my photo content CC-BY-NC (therefore, I set it as my default photo license) but few photos which I consider of high potential value I want to keep with all rights reserved. What is the best method to override photo license individually? I would expect such option during photo upload but I cannot see it (I might be missing it - I’m a new user).
As an alternative approach, I thought I could change the photo license in the published observation but using the option “Edit” it seems I can modify license only for the observation - not for the photo (I, however, consider this as only a backup solution - I do not want to have to change the license because I’m not sure what are legal implications of the fact that the photo was already released under CC - although perhaps just for a few minutes).
Thanks for any help!

You can change the license for a single photo on the website after you upload the observation, I don’t know if you can change it before.

To change the license for a single photo:

  1. Head to the observation that has the photo whose license you want to change

  2. Select the image that you want to change the license on, if it is not already selected by being the first image of the observation.

  3. Once you have the correct image selected, click on the circle with an i inside of it to open the page for the image

  4. Once the page for the image is open, find “Attribution” which is at the top of the column of information to the right of the image. Click on where it says “Edit License” next to the attribution.

It should open up a menu that looks something like this:

You can click on the license you want (“No license (All rights reserved)” is at the bottom of the menu. When you have picked the license you want click the blue “Set License” button on the bottom of the screen and it should set the license for that photo only


Thanks! I will wait a bit if there is other suggestion how to do during observation upload and if there is none I will select your response as the solution.

you could always go to your user settings and change your default photo license to the more restrictive option without applying it to all existing photos. then load your observation. then change the default license in your user settings back to the less restrictive setting. not a great workflow, but not too cumbersome if you do this only occasionally.


While we’re on the topic of license customization, I’d like to put in a pitch for CC-BY as a potential license for your “lesser value” photos. While CC-BY-NC sounds like a great idea, in practice it’s not very useful for re-users due to the fact that no one can agree on the legal definition of “non-commercial”. Websites like Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons won’t accept NC licensed photos for use on their projects due to this ambiguity, but they will accept CC-BY or CC-BY-SA. Of course, it’s up to you what license you want to use, and any Creative Commons license is appreciated!


Thanks, for mentioning this, I hadn’t been aware and just changed my license settings accordingly.


Thanks all for suggestions. I added this as a feature request here:

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