Reusing Content on NBN

Content on Nation Branding Now is selected and made available with the exclusive use and benefit of users undertaking their own private study in mind. This is not to say that other uses are discouraged – No, please, cite this! Talk about it with friends! – only that the philosophy behind our curation of materials was divined with private study in mind. Should one wish to make use of content seen here or linked to from here for some other purpose, there are a few things to keep in mind. How one should proceed depends largely upon the type of content.

Things NBN wrote

Textual content (this includes but is not limited to the User Guide you are reading now, the content of the “Remarks” field excepting blockquotes, and all bibliographic annotations in our documentation) belongs to the NBN project. Our Markdown files, the arrangement of those Markdown files, and the contents of those Markdown files have certain use restrictions with which the end user should familiarize themselves. Our methods of compilation are unique among symbols catalogues, and this product is the fruit of skill and judgement in the editorial process.

As a reference source which includes basic facts, one is free and encouraged to use facts discovered within the project. A basic fact will fall outside of IP regulations in most jurisdictions. Original descriptions (most commonly but not exclusively found in “Remarks” fields) are subjective and creative syntheses arising from consultation of a broad variety of informational sources, as well as our own professional judgement – in reproducing these, one is encouraged to cite where appropriate and ensure compliance with the proper use exemption.

Open public editions of the NBN project are versions pushed to the master branch of the GitHub repo. Per the GitHub Terms of Service, one is free to access and fork the repository. The underlying source code used for the formatting and display of NBN content (see below) is under a permissive licence.

In Plain English: Substantial duplication and non-attribution of the Markdown files comprising the NBN project in a competing, commercial database is disallowed. Automated scraping and mirroring of the contents of NBN harms the project, and as such runs afoul of our Acceptable Use Policy TK. Realize that scraping could jeopardize timely access to the service for yourself or others. Please write to the editorial team if you are interested in integrating meaningful parts of NBN into a commercial research product.

Note: Blockquotes in the “Remarks” field are typically not of NBN authorship. When text in a blockquote is non-original, each comes with an accompanying reference.


Tread lightly. NBN does not own, never implies to own, and disclaims all ownership of the symbols depicted in image panes. We make use of symbols, wordmarks, and other visual identifiers as illustratively necessary to convey the meaning intended by governments and creative agencies. Every effort is made to identify and name the relevant rights-holder in the space immediately beneath our image panes.

Re-use is complicated. Many of these graphic representations are protected by trade-mark law, copyright law, both, or more. Do be aware that even for certain non-commercial purposes, the relevant authority may require a grant of permission to reproduce their mark. If the purpose of use is for commercial or personal gain, one should without question go direct to the agency or council managing the mark.

Due to the nature of the symbols catalogued (governmental identification), some official identifying marks are quite exceptionally protected. Misrepresentation while using a protected mark can be a very serious offence. See, among many others, Canada’s concept of Prohibited Marks and the relevant section of the Norwegian Penal Code. NBN strongly recommends consulting the laws of both the source jurisdiction and one’s home jurisdiction before using an official mark for any purpose.

Linked articles and other third-party content

NBN makes an earnest effort to provide to the reader a full complement of metadata necessary to generate a citation whenever linking to third-party materials. This is compiled to the best of our knowledge and ability to engender a respect for creative content producers both within the project and among users.

The content we link to is, with few exceptions, not written by NBN. Any views expressed or positions taken by third-party content following an NBN hyperlink does not represent an endorsement or agreement on the part of NBN or its contributors. Links directly to third-party sites are live and scanned for malicious content at the time they are added to the NBN index, but we offer no warranty as to the continued vitality, veracity, or safety of off-site resources. Please practice responsible attribution hygiene when using third-party work, and realize that this heterogeneous collection of sources has similarly heterogeneous protected statuses and use restrictions. Exercise good judgement and browse off-site at your own risk.

Our Code and Web Assets

The project files used to build this website (that is, the stuff outside of the Hexo source directory on GitHub) are open-source under the MIT Licence. This project incorporates third-party source code made available under the MIT Licence from Facebook, GitHub, Go Make Things, Forbes Lindesay, Taylor Hakes, Orange, Zeno Rocha, José F. Romaniello, SmartBear Software, Twitter, and Zalando.

Our flag image assets, shown in-text and on index pages, are under the MIT Licence. NBN‘s flag library incorporates and builds upon the work of the Flagkit project by Bowtie, which is also made available under the MIT Licence.

Concluding Thoughts

We get it. Databases are a bit of a morass, that is why we try our absolute best to furnish all information available to us on authorship and courteous use. (The graphic standards manuals are not given privileged positions on our pages for no reason!) NBN loves seeing the creative works of individuals facilitated by the content in this resource. Do make all efforts to inform yourself of the usage rights and obligations available to you in your own jurisdiction. If we helped you do something cool today, do not be afraid to shout us out, as it is always good practice when gathering and sharing information!

← Back to User Guide

Page instantiated: 19 February 2019.
Date of last revision: 19 August 2019.