After more than two years in beta, Creative Commons has launched its new search engine, featuring a completely redesigned search page, improved navigation and search filters, better search loading times, and more accurate search phrase relevance. It has replaced the old search portal and is now linked from the homepage.
This update to CC Search also improves attribution options, making it easy for users to copy the text or HTML with the license icons included. Each image also has a unique link for users to provide optional feedback on how they using the works.
Creative Commons has indexed 30 million CC-licensed images from 19 collections, including Flickr, Geograph Britain and Ireland, Bēhance, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and a number of other smaller collections. The nonprofit organization’s long-term goal is to provide access to all 1.4 billion CC-licensed and public domain works on the web.
Creative Commons will soon be expanding its image catalog with works from Europeana and Wikimedia Commons and is also adding open textbooks and audio later in 2019. The next items on the CC Search roadmap for this quarter include advanced filters to the home page, the ability to browse collections without entering search terms, and improved accessibility and UX on mobile. Some of this work will be performed by Google Summer of Code students beginning next month.
CC-licensed images are popular with bloggers and designers but tracking down license and attribution information can be tedious when searching various collections across the web. CC Search aggregates some of the most popular sources and is steadily improving the performance of its search tool. If you experience any issues, all of the CC Search code (CC Search, CC Catalog API, CC Catalog) is open source on GitHub and the organization welcomes bug reports and contributions from the community.