Commons:Free media resources/Map

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This page sums up freely licensed maps and satellite data (also public domain) that can be used as sources for file upload at Wikimedia Commons. However never blindly upload everything from these pages. Please always double check if the media is really freely licensed and if it is useful for Wikimedia Commons projects. Thus it is required to act according to the following points.

Before you upload in the Commons any media from these sources:Edit

  • Check if it is already available in the Wikimedia Commons - See the search page.
  • Check if the media has a free licence that can be used in the Wikimedia Commons - See license requirements and useable licences.
  • Never forget to include a good description, credit to the author, source and the right license tag (and justify, e.g. with a quote, why this license tag is right) - See project scope.

Please don't data dumpEdit

  • Not all resources are useful for Wikimedia projects. Examples of non-useful resources include: images without informational value (party pictures, minor artwork without informational purpose), very old media which may have errors of fact, content from biased points of view. See project scope.

Before you add a source linkEdit

  • Check if the website with the link has a fair amount of free licenced content with a useable licence.
  • Place the links in the proper sub page.
  • : GFDL relief maps of any part of the world in PNG : Click on the photo icon and select a rectangled area by holding down the mouse button. Afterwards a little window pops up with the grabbed area. (tutorial) ; The Map Layers (except the labeling layer and the contour layer) and the Relief Maps are all computed by Hans Braxmeier. [...] Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify all map layers and relief maps under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation license, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation except the labeling layer and contour layer.(about). You must set your browser to allow popups. Please make sure you credit the author and add the screenshot to the category Category:Maps-for-free images or one of its subcategories.
  • University of Texas at Austin, Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection : old maps. Most of the maps scanned by the University of Texas Libraries and served from this web site are in the public domain. No permissions are needed to copy them. You may download them and use them as you wish (...) A few maps are copyrighted, and are clearly marked as such. (Frequently asked questions)
  • -- this site will help you generate maps, upon request, in any of six different formats. It has a form where the user specifies the latitude and longitude of the maps boundaries. The user can choose to have rivers displayed, national boundaries displayed, bathymetry and/or topography displayed. The user can choose to display cities from the engines' geographic database, or they can specify their own list of cities longitude and latitude. Mercator is one of the six formats the engine supports, but I prefer "Lambert Azimuthal" and "Orthographic". Orthographic gives a representation of half the world, viewed as a globe, directly over a specific place. Lambert Azimuthal is not much different from Mercator, for small maps, or at low latitude. At higher latitudes its advantages over Mercator become more apparent. It renders the lines of latitude and longitude as curves in order to more accurately render the real shapes and distances of the geographic features.
  • The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library (see also its Flickr account).
  • The Swedish National Land Survey (Lantmäteriet) offer a service called "Open data". From it, geodata-files (for GIS-software) and aerial photographs from the 1960s and 1970s are available for Sweden with the license CC-0. Furthermore, it is possible to download historical maps of Sweden which are public domain due to their age.
  • ✓[OK] Screenshots of maps from site are released under CC-BY-SA 4.0 license (Licensing in Czech). It applies for Basic (Základní), Outdoor (Turistická), Winter (Zimní) and Geographic (Zeměpisná) maps worldwide (these are, except for Czechia, renderings of OSM). Moreover, Aerial (Letecká) maps are released under CC-BY-SA 4.0 only within Czechia. Uploaded files should be tagged with {{ CC-BY-SA}} and sources of the maps should be listed. Files from are categorized in Category:Screenshots from
  • ✓[OK] Maps and satellite imagery issued by agencies of the federal government of the United States like the CIA, NIMA/NGA or NOAA are acceptable. An appropriate tag like {{PD-USGov-Military-NGA}}, {{PD-USGov-NOAA}}, {{PD-USGov-CIA}}.
  • ✓[OK] For satellite pictures of the Earth, an acceptable source is the NASA World Wind project. Many of the datasets that come installed with WorldWind by default are in the public domain ([1]), particularly those that come from the U.S. Geological Survey. For such images, use license tag {{PD-WorldWind}}. Note that some datasets may not be in the public domain; use caution.
  • ✓[OK] Free maps down to street level are available from OpenStreetMap, under a {{Cc-by-sa-2.0}} license. OpenStreetMap requires that all maps are credited to "© OpenStreetMap contributors", and that you "make it clear that the data is available under the Open Database License"; {{OpenStreetMap}} can be used for this purpose. Creative Commons does not allow relicensing of derivative works under GNU Free Documentation license, so all maps based on OpenStreetMap must be licensed only under a Creative Commons license.
    • Purple question mark.svg Unsure if your OpenStreetMap screenshot is about editing it, unless if you switch the background to the basic OpenStreetMap background, the background satellite images are problemic as they usually don't second OSM's ODbL, based on COM:PRP and Assume good faith positions, we can safety to say the background images to represent Bing map are against our license policy.
  • ✓[OK] Maps of Geospatial Information Authority of Japan (GSI) can be uploaded with {{GJSTU-2.0}}.