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Most files uploaded to Wikimedia Commons have commonly used license tags proposed by the Upload Wizard. The wizard guides you through a file upload, and suggests commonly used licenses in the second step. These are described below.

Contents

Own workEdit

If the file is your own work, you may irrevocably grant anyone the right to use this work under one of:

{{Cc-by-sa-4.0}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0 (recommended: legal code)    
{{Cc-by-sa-3.0}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 (legal code)    
{{Cc-by-4.0}} Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (legal code)  
{{Cc-by-3.0}} Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (legal code)  
{{Cc-zero}} Creative Commons CC0 Waiver (release all rights, like public domain: legal code)  

Another authorEdit

If the file is not your own work, you must say where this digital file came from, which could be a URL, or a book or publication. You must also provide the name of the person who took the photo, or painted the picture, drew the drawing, etc. Then you must say why you are sure you have the right to publish this work. The reason may be because it has an acceptable Creative Commons license, because you found it on Flickr with the right license, or because it is definitely out of copyright in the United States.

Acceptable Creative Commons licenseEdit

The copyright holder published this work with one of the right Creative Commons licenses. Not all Creative Commons licenses are good for this site. Make sure the copyright holder used one of the licenses listed below. If the work is already published online, but not under that license online, or if you are not the copyright holder of the work, please follow the steps described at Commons:OTRS (the copyright holder has to send an email with relevant permission) and add {{subst:OP}} to the "Source" field in the upload form. Acceptable licenses are:

{{Cc-by-sa-4.0}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0 (legal code)    
{{Cc-by-sa-3.0}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 (legal code)    
{{Cc-by-sa-2.5}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.5 (legal code)    
{{Cc-by-4.0}} Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (legal code)  
{{Cc-by-3.0}} Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (legal code)  
{{Cc-by-2.5}} Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 (legal code)  
{{Cc-zero}} Creative Commons CC0 Waiver (release all rights, like public domain: legal code)  

Flickr with the right licenseEdit

The copyright holder published their photo or video on Flickr with the right license. Check the "License" header on the side of the Flickr page. Both the icons and license name that they used have to match one of the choices here.

{{Cc-by-sa-2.0}} Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0 (legal code)    
{{Cc-by-2.0}} Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 (legal code)  
{{PD-USGov}} Original work of the US Federal Government

Definitely out of copyright in the USAEdit

Wikimedia Commons is located in the USA, so the work must be out of copyright in that country.

{{PD-US-expired}} First published in the United States before January 1, 1924
{{PD-old-70-expired}} First published before January 1, 1924 and author died more than 70 years ago
{{PD-Art}} Faithful reproduction of a painting in the public domain because the artist died more than 70 years ago (learn more)
{{PD-USGov}} Original work of the US Federal Government
{{PD-USGov-NASA}} Original work of NASA

Other reasonsEdit

If none of the reasons mentioned above fit the situation, you may still upload it with a license described by a valid copyright tag. See Commons:Copyright tags for information on choosing a copyright tag.

If you found the file on the Internet and are not sure but believe this work is freely licensed or legally in the public domain, you may still upload it. However, you must understand that if you do not add the necessary licensing information in a timely fashion, the file may be deleted.

See alsoEdit