What does "Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at Wisdom Publications" entail exactly?

Does it mean that the text is available on SC translation pages, but we are not allowed to copy/paste it anywhere?

As I understand this, it refers to a certain copyright license. If you want to use the text or whatever beyond the scope outlined in the license you can ask permission from the copyright holder, in this case Wisdom Publications.

This is my understanding too, but what is the content of that license, and hence what are we allowed to do or not, is the question here.

There is a link in relevant texts to the licence in question:

Quoting from it:

All text content is protected by the book’s copyright. Additionally, any excerpts from Wisdom books that appear anywhere on this website are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. When sharing or reproducing Wisdom book content from this website, please include the following copyright statement, incorporating the work’s particular copyright information, which can be found on each book’s copyright page: © [Copyright holder (usually author, editor, or translator)], [Title], (Wisdom Publications, [Publication year]). Please also include the following sentence: “This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.” If you are sharing this book content online, make sure the license name is linked, as it is here, to the license information page.

From the linked Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License:

You are free to:

Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format

[… the various terms, such as attribution]

Relating this to your original question, by my understanding yes, you are allowed to copy and paste it, but if you paste it somewhere that isn’t just for your own personal use you ought to attribute it.


Thanks Aminah, yes that’s correct. So anyone can use these texts as long as they don’t change it, don’t sell it, and give proper attribution.

Like all texts, of course, it’s also okay to quote short passages as “fair use” in an essay, post, etc. In such cases there’s no need to include the license.

Oh, and as for “permissions beyond the scope of this license”, the most important such case is translations. Since the license specifies “no derivatives”, making a translation from the Wisdom texts is prohibited unless they give explicit permission. However, Wisdom have so far as I know been supportive of anyone who wants to make translations. It is just a matter of contacting them and asking for permission.


Does that mean that Wisdom Pub finally gave up on restricting access to translations of the Dhamma?

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No, they are just as they were. These licenses are currently applied only to selected texts, which are available on SuttaCentral.

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Dear Bhante @sujato
I note that there are many (e.g. about a third of the Majjhima Nikaya) Bhikkhu Bodhi translations available under a Creative Commons … licence.

Copyright Attribution

It is wonderful that there are so many of Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translations available for non-commercial use. (I’d like ALL of them to be like that but that’s another issue)

For my purposes, I’d like to have footnotes but I understand your attitude to them and footnotes are summarily removed from translations posted to Sutta Central.

Therefore my question is: are Bhikkhu Bodhi’s footnotes part of the Creative Commons licence or are the Creative Commons versions of the translations “footnote-less”?

Thanks :anjal:


You’ll have to check Wisdom’s website for that. I believe that the notes are not displayed there, but I may be mistaken.

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That appears to be correct

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Thanks Bhante @sujato and Venerable @Khemarato.bhikkhu. It’s probably a good thing that the footnotes aren’t included in Bhikkhu Bodhi’s Creative Commons licenced translations.

It’s a curious choice by the publishers: the notes are one of the best parts of Ven Bodhi’s work, you’d think they’d want to show them off to readers.


If you look in the first part of this page you will find ebooks of Bhante Bodhi’s CC texts.

I would guess it was the difficulty of web publishing them allong with the protectionist attitude. If you want that part you have to pay. Or maybe most people dont read the footnotes.