Open main menu



en:User:Maayaa has asserted that all Croatian media enters the public domain twenty-five years after publication. If this is true, and I have no particular reason to doubt that it is other than that being a remarkably short span of time, why do we not have a PD-Croatia template here? Jkelly 18:31, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

Because it's not true. See §99-106 of the Croatian copyright law. Croatia joined the Berne Convention on October 8, 1991 (i.e., a little more than three months after having become an independent nation) and has a "70 years p.m.a." rule. Lupo 08:37, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
Seems I spoke too soon. The above law is in effect since 2003. The previous copyright law of Croatia indeed placed photographs under copyright only for 25 years since their publication (§83 of the old Croatian copyright law). That 25-year rule for photographs was taken over from the law of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and was valid in Croatia from 1991 to 2003 (legislative history of the Croatian copyright law). That makes indeed photographs published before 1978 PD in Croatia, and would make Croatian photographs first published in Croatia before 1966 (1991 - 25) PD in other signatory countries of the Berne Convention, too. Lupo 06:49, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
The only problem is that there are no such Croatian works! The country exists as such only since 1991. Anything published before 1991 would have been a Yugoslav work. This would need far more research. Was Yugoslavia a member of the UCC? And what happened when Yugoslavia was dissolved? To what works published before 1991 could we possibly apply Croatian law? (Works of authors who had a Croat passport after 1991? Works published first on the territory of the later state of Croatia? And what about works of authors who died before 1991?) Or would we need to consider Yugoslav works to have been published simultaneously in all the successor states? At this time, I don't know the answers to these questions, and researching this will take a lot of time. Note that the same uncertainties also exist for Slovenian, Bosnian, Serbian etc. images, and also for Czech or Slovak images. Lupo 06:49, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
Indeed it appears that Yugoslavia was a member of the UCC with effective date May 11, 1966, and that the successor states of Yugoslavia are also considered members of the UCC with that effective date (Circular 38a of the U.S. Copyright Office). Lupo 06:59, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
So, in the end, it is 70 years pma? Jkelly 20:41, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
I don't know. As I wrote above, it appears that pre-1978 photographs would indeed be PD within Croatia. Outside of Croatia, the situation is completely unclear to me because I do not know which law (or laws) have to be applied to former Yugoslav works. Anything post-1965 is (due to the UCC membership of Yugoslavia) certainly copyrighted in other UCC member countries. At least Croatia did not pass any retroactive laws! But for a definitive answer, ask Jean-Baptiste Soufron. I'll also try to find out more, but it will take a lot of time (think in weeks and months). Lupo 14:31, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Have I stumbled upon freedom of panorama in Slovak law?Edit

Slovak copyright law (alternate link, English translation) states:

"Section 27 The Use of Work Located in a Public Place

(1) Without the authorization of the author a work permanently located in a public place may be expressed by drawing, painting, graphics, relief picture or relief model or be fixed in a photography or in a film; work such expressed or fixed may be used without authorisation of the author of work permanently located in a public place by making a copy thereof, by its distribution to the public by sale or any other form of transfer of ownership or by communication to the public. The provision of third sentence of Section 25 shall apply mutatis mutandis on such uses.

(2) There shall be no obligation to pay remuneration to the author for use of the work pursuant to Subsection (1)."

"Section 25 Quotation from the Work

A short part of a disclosed work may be used in the form of a quotation in another work without the authorisation of the author only for purposes of review or criticism of the disclosed work or for teaching purposes, scientific research purposes or artistic purposes. Such use must be in compliance with practice and its extent may not exceed that which is justified by the purpose of the quotation. The quotation shall be accompanied by a mention of the name of author or his/her pseudonym unless it is an anonymous work, or the name of the person under the name of which the work is being made available to the public, as well as the title of the work and source thereof. There shall be no obligation to pay remuneration to the author for such use."

Am I getting it right that de facto all photographs of public areas are PD if author is credited? Does it apply in this case: Image:SDKU_bilboard.jpg? Do any other restriction apply on this photo? ~~helix84 21:49, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

Hello. Sorry for the delayed answer. As I gather the two sections you quote, the top section is about the freedom of panorama, while the second section is about quotation of works that are not subject of the freedom of panorama (such as paintings).
The Image:SDKU bilboard.jpg is not a permanent installation because is it an promotional poster. So section 25 must be applicable. But section 25 does not grant the kind of rights that are necessary for inclusion on Commons (unrestricted commercial and derivatory use). So IMO the image would be deleted if nominated for deletion. Regards, Fred Chess 21:12, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Thank you, it didn't occur to me that it wasn't permanently installed. However, I think I have found such Freedom of panorama is highly helpful and I wish a lawyer could review and confirm it and we could include it into Commons:Licensing#Slovakia.

Another related question I have is, that we also have a law ("about municipialities"), which restricts the use of coats of arms of Slovak cities. Some cities then make money from giving consent to use these symbols and sometimes define fines for unauthorized use. I'll provide a translation of that section (this is my translation, not a lawyers tranlation!):

[1] 369/1990 Zb. o obecnom zriadení, § 1b Symboly obce:

The municipiality has a right for its own symbols. A municipiality, which has its own symbols is obliged to use them when carrying out self-government. The symbols of a municipiality are: coats of arms, a flag, a stamp and song. Organizations founded by the municipiality, other organizations and persons can use the symbols of the municipiality only with consent of the municipiality.

My question is, if we could use Freedom of panorama to take photos of publicly displayed coats of arms and then use them (on Wikipedia, so not necessarily under a free license). In what relation is this law to the copyright law? Which one is superior? ~~helix84 17:42, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Copyright for pre-1923 works where author died after 1936Edit

I'm a bit confused over European copyright law, specifically when works go into public domain. Is the date of the author/artist's death the relevant factor or is it the date that the work was created? I recently posted an illustration originally created by the Danish/French artist Gerda Wegener in 1920 – I figured that would be OK, because its pre-1923. However, she died in 1940, so we're still 4 years shy of the 70th aniversary of her death. Are her pre-1923 works now public domain, or do those go into the public domaine in 2010 with all of her other works? Iamcuriousblue 02:15, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

Pre-1923 is only valid for the USA. For European authors you have to wait 70 from their death. --::Slomox:: >< 12:01, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
Partially wrong. In the EU copyright terms last for life of the author plus 70 years. In the US the basic rule is if it was published before 1923 it is public domain. If someone is uploading that image from the somewhere in the EU then they are covered by the relevant national copyright law and works by Gerda Wegener are still in copyright. If someone is uploading that image from somewhere in the US then they are only covered by US copyright law. Consequently works by Gerda Wegener which were published before 1923 are public domain. If uploading from the US then only US copyright law matters. If uploading from elsewhere US copyright law and local copyright law both apply. David Newton 14:02, 19 June 2006 (UTC)
You said If uploading from the US then only US copyright law matters - that's not true: the US has treaties with a lot of countries that allow "foreign" copyright to be enforced in the US. While i'm not sure about the details of those treaties, it appears to be best practice to applie "PD if published before 1923" only if the work was first published in the US. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 14:24, 19 June 2006 (UTC)
Then your interpretation would be wrong. I'm going by the policies of Project Gutenberg which has many years of experience of, and a very conservative policy about, the interaction of various copyright jurisdictions. See [2] which makes no mention of any necessity that the work was first published in the United States. There are parts of US copyright law where the place of first publication matters, but the pre-1923 rule is not one of them. The US has not incorporated the Berne Convention rule of shorter term into its domestic law.
Project Gutenberg has had its policy reviewed by copyright lawyers and it is watertight. So long as the person uploading is physically in the United States, and they are not uploading material downloaded from a third party web server not located in the US, then the only copyright law that matters is US copyright law since the Commons servers are also in the United States. I'm in the UK so at the very least both US and UK copyright law apply to me when I upload things to Commons.
The flip side of this is, of course, fair use. There are many, many, many people who claim fair use of material downloaded from foreign internet servers. I've tried in the past to get it through their thick skulls that fair use does not exist outside the United States. However this is often a futile exercise. I can't claim to be a copyright lawyer but I do know more about international copyright law then the average layman. I'm so glad that fair use is banned on Commons because it's one less large copyright headache that we have to worry about. David Newton 13:31, 21 June 2006 (UTC)

Portraits with unclear copyright status from the U.S. Federal GovernmentEdit

This debate was moved from: w:Wikipedia:Possibly unfree images/US government portraits

Wikipedia: Possibly unfree images/US government portraitsEdit

moved from Template:Deletion requests 08:41, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

Let me add these to the mix:

  • Jiang, you are not a copyright attorney, and neither am I. This is not just limited to Presidential portraist, if you had your way, all portraits of government officials would be staken down from wikipedia. I went and got an outside expert, the curator, and you have no such support. Some of the copyrights you tagged with PD-Old, because they were old, but that ignores the fact that they all came from the same source, the White House website. They were all gifts to the American people by friends of the officials, and it is the custom for the artist to surrender any copyright they may have. --Evrik 19:13, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
    • Please stop with the personal attacks and baseless accusations against me. If you believe that I would like to have all public domain images deleted, then you still fail to comprehend the argument at hand. The crux of the argument here is about distinguishing works created by federal employees vs. works created through commission. The White House curator is not a "copyright attorney" and does not have the authority on this issue, which you speak of, to satisfy our burden of proof that these images are PD. The statement, "it is the custom for the artist to surrender any copyright they may have" is baseless: please cite your source for this. Releasing these works into the public domain must be done explicitly: provide the evidence that this has been done.--Jiang 19:32, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
      • (Converted gallery to list; this page is already long enough) Evrik: The curator is not an "expert" and his statement is nothing here. Imagine if we listed images as public domain because "The curator told us it was probably OK"! We need written-down laws. Jiang is right: the burden of proof is on us. When in doubt, we have to delete. pfctdayelise (translate?) 01:17, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

Cogent Comments by .:.Jareth.:.Edit


Since I got pointed this direction from the dispute over adding and removing the tags, I thought I'd take a second to look in to the issue. I spoke with my congressman, a curator at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and an archivist at the National Archives. Each of them assured me that official photographs and portraits of U.S. Presidents (and other government officials), while being done by non-govenment employees were contracted in such a manner that rights were given to the U.S. government. In fact, since this had been questioned before, the NARA wrote a section into their regulations to cover the handling of Presidential records (NARA Regulations(36 CFR Chapter XII, subchapter E)) however, this only applies specifically to President Reagan and later. You can also easily look at the online websites of the presidential libraries of the pictures in questions and find that the libraries list all of these portraits as being in the public domain. Believe it or not, even photographs and portraits apparently full under the Freedom of Information Act as works of a President. Hope that helps. .:.Jareth.:. babelfish 19:23, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

Posted by --Evrik 01:37, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

  • Is there a copyright attorney in the house? --Evrik 01:37, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

Contacting the Library of CongressEdit

I have been researching this issue, but trying to find a written source has been difficult. Verbally, we keep hearing from the experts that the painting are PD. This debate involves more than those tagged as EOP pictures, but will involve portraits of all government officials. Next week, I will contact the Library of Congress to try and get some clarity on this issue. _Evrik 01:26, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

Keep allEdit

Someone questioned, Bill Alman, the White House curator who said:

Generally, the portraits are property of the federal government and are in the public domain. In the case of the White House portraits, the photograph of the portrait may have copyright restrictions, but that it should be generally okay to use the images as long as the publisher of the electronic image is credited.

The problem is that for some reason people in the discussion, are focusing on the fact that copyright and ownership are seperate rights - and refuse to acknowledge that the curator was clearly identifying the ownership of both property rights by saying "the portraits are property of the federal government [ownership of the portraits] and are in the public domain [copyright status]."

The curator then showed a very sophisticated understanding of US copyright law by making a distinction between the copyright in the work itself (which is in the public domain), and the copyright of a photo which may or may not be copyrighted depending on your view of the line of reasoning in Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp. which held that exact photographic copies of public domain images could not be protected by copyright because the copies lack originality. Where there is signifant originality there would be copyright in the photograph seperate from the portrait.

The curator seems, very wisely, IMHO, to refrain from giving an opinion about the copyright of any reproductions (photographs) of the portraits while drawing the attention to the questioner that this could be an issue. He even very clearly identifies that the only copyright issue in question is whether one is claimed by the "publisher of the electronic image."

Thus, the portraits themselves being properly commissioned by the US and having the copyright transferred to the US govt - thus becoming "public domain" as identified by the curator are public domain works. The only issue is whether the photo itself is copyrighted.

This is also resolvable in one of 2 ways:

  1. Determination that the photos lack sufficient originality, thus the photographer can not claim copyright in the photo of a public domain work (following Bridgeman)
  2. Assuming that there is sufficient originality, so we need to find the copyright status of the photo seperate from the one in the portrait:
    1. If they are photos posted by the US govt and copied to wikipedia from there - then those are clearly in the public domain as a work of the US govt.
    2. If the photo was taken by a contributor - then we should refer to his license in uploading the work.

Personally, my review of the photos in question indicate that they clearly fall under the Bridgeman decision and the photographer can not claim a copyright in them as there is not the sufficient originality by the photographer Trödel 16:28, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

This is completely off topic. The issue here is not over whether photographs of public domain works are copyrightable: it is not in dispute that they are not. We are trying to note that these paintings are not PD in the first place. The claim that 'the portraits themselves being properly commissioned by the US and having the copyright transferred to the US govt - thus becoming "public domain'" is invalid. Copyrights transferred to the US government do not automatically become PD: the US can hold copyright, per 17 U.S.C. § 105, "the United States Government is not precluded from receiving and holding copyrights transferred to it by assignment, bequest, or otherwise."
We need proof that these paintings were specifically released into the public domain or are otherwise available for free use.--Jiang 02:38, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
No one doubts that the US govt can hold copyright; however, what you fail to acknowledge is that a copyright holder can dedicate the work to the public domain. The curator clearly indicated that has been the case here - and I am confused by your convoluted logic to try to explain away his clear language. I think we should be careful about copyrights and everything on commons MUST be freely transferable; however, when evidence (such as the that from the curator who is responsible for the works) is to the contrary to continue to press the view just looks, to me, like you want these deleted for some other reason than the protection of the WMF. Trödel 15:21, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
I acknowledge that the copyright holder may release a work into the public domain. However, this must done explicitly for each specific work and by an appropriate authority (does the curator have the authority to release these works?). The curator was attempting to make a statement of fact, not a delcaration. His statement was, "Generally, the portraits are property of the federal government and are in the public domain." (emphasis added) If this is the case, we need to ask him when and how these portraits became released into the public domain.--Jiang 03:06, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
ACK Jiang. Still waiting to hear back from Evrik. And let's please leave the poor curator out of it, who I'm sure had no idea he was resolving any major copyright issue... pfctdayelise (translate?) 07:46, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
  • Thank you Trödel for your cogent and thoughtful response. My great frustration in dealing with this whole issue has been showing that the portraits have been commissioned with the intent of donating them to the citizens of the United States, and to the public domain. --Evrik 14:51, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
  • I was away from a computer most of last week. I did send a letter to the Librarian of Congress, the White House curator and to the National Archivist asking for clarification. At this point all we can do is sit and wait until we get a response. Is there a copyright attorney in the house? --Evrik 14:44, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
    • We can't wait forever. I think if there is absolutely nothing new to add to this case by the end of June, we should act. pfctdayelise (translate?) 16:15, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
  • I spoke earlier about setting arbitrary deadlines. Rather than set a date to resolves this. Can we work to bring a copyright expert within wikipedia to comment on this. -Evrik 17:23, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

Instead of fighting over squidgy little thumbnails, let's track down the original paintings and document their details. Presidential portraits are usually done by well-known painters with bios and all - we can then prove PD-ness of old paintings, and figure out copyright status of newer ones. Stan Shebs 22:13, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

Creation of {{Template:PD-USGov-Military-Navy-NHC}}Edit

Hello everybody.
I've created this template (formerly a redirect to Template:PD-USGov-Military-Navy) and it's related category:PD US Navy NHC because there was a lack about the licensing of these images present in Commons. Most (all ?) of them are tagged with Template:PD-USGov-Military-Navy in which is indicated : « This image is a work of a sailor or employee of the U.S. Navy, taken or made during the course of the person's official duties. » which is many times false for the NHC's pictures. For example, images of the battleship Bismarck were not taken by a U.S. sailor (of course !) but seized later by the U.S. Government, neither some of the HMS Hood (51).
For the moment, there are only few images in that category as I'm waiting for your reactions.
I hope I've done well. Feel free to make any needed correction to the template. Sting 18:20, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

Amen BreakEdit

Is it alright to upload the Amen Break here, or not? It's a six-second drum break that technically belongs to the Winstons, a funk band from 1969, but...well, watch this for an explanation. You've heard it before, I guarantee. Is it public domain or not?--Mobius Soul 13:06, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Probably not. I can't see a statement of this clip being public domain. You may be able to upload it as fair use on English Wikipedia. / Fred Chess 18:15, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

cdc & nioshEdit

i just found Image:Sars-corona.png and now i'm wondering whether it's truely pd and if "released by the CDC" grants for pd-imges? ps: the original (upload) is still on en:Image:Sars-corona.png --Frumpy 20:42, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

It should be OK. / Fred Chess 18:21, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

I'm just asking, because the commons don't have any template(s) for pictures of this organization --Frumpy 12:18, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

My guess is that the CDC is using material released from other U.S. governemt agencies. They don't mention which ones though, but {{PD-USGov}} should be sufficient. / Fred Chess 22:54, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

"Only commercial for educational purposes" (not advertising of unrelated products) a possible tag?Edit

Many people and even news agencies only agree to release their photos under such a restriction. Can't we allow it on Commons?

Fred Chess 22:57, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

To me at least, that sounds like a restriction contrary to the principles of free content. Angr 07:04, 20 June 2006 (UTC)
No, because that means restricting the usage of the images and as such it's not "free as in freedom". Bogdan 17:51, 20 June 2006 (UTC)

Derivatory works disagreementEdit

I don't agree with the restrictions of derivatory works in the article.

I acknowledge there are limitations for the use of a Mickey Mouse photo, but -- I find that a photo of Mickey Mouse is permittable for the purpose of Wikimedia's projects. In my opinion, the limitations should be indicated on the image's description page.

As I see it, a photo per se would be as free as it can get, although the subject per se is copyrighted. So the photo could be GFDL, while the image might not be able to be used as a standalone image on a T-shirt (not that a GFDL image could be printed on a T-shirt). But I don't think that Commons would need to support manufacturers of T-shirts.

Fred Chess 12:02, 22 June 2006 (UTC)

You are mistaken. A photo that has a coprighted work as the main subject can not be licensed at will, because it's derivative work of that object. A picture of a Micky Mouse figure may be fair use depending on context, but that's not applicable on Commons, for lack of editorical context. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 14:15, 22 June 2006 (UTC)
Have a look at Commons:Derivative works... --Fb78 12:43, 28 June 2006 (UTC)

Image:FBI seal.svgEdit

This must certainly be a recurring or a trivial question, so my apologies. Works of the United States Government are in public domain, so the FBI seal is at least free of copyrights. But is the FBI seal in public domain, if it has been drawn by an non-governmental artist? Please see Image:FBI seal.svg. I downloaded the image from the best brands of the world as EPS and converted it to SVG. There's no indication of copyright, apart from "Copyright © 1999-2005 Graphit", but I'm sure that refers to the website only, not the 100,000+ drawings they display. But to put it this way, could they claim copyright on the specific drawing of the FBI seal, or is in public domain because it is a drawing of the FBI seal? --Hautala 17:23, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

In any case, this image doesn't look like en:Image:FBISeal.png or the one shown at the FBI site. The typography is wrong (look at the "J"), the colors are different, the stripes are wrong, and the design of the laurels is quite different. Typography and coloration are not copyrightable elements, but the stripes and the laurels are. (See the Compendium of Office Practices II, section 500 from the U.S. Copyright Office on what is sufficiently original to be eligible to copyright in the U.S.) I thus think that the EPS image may just barely be copyrightable as an original rendering of the seal's blazon, but it doesn't show the official version of the seal. (The SVG image also has some strange artefacts, such as vertical grey lines.) A faithful reproduction of some official reference image would, of course, not be copyrightable in itself as a slavish reproduction. (See also Bridgeman v. Corel.) How and where is the FBI seal defined? Does the FBI offer reference graphics for download? These certainly would be PD as works of the U.S. federal government. Lupo 11:32, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
There's a nice one on the title page of this report available for download at the FBI. Lupo 11:43, 26 June 2006 (UTC)
There is one already, Image:FBISeal.png. / Fred Chess 00:05, 27 June 2006 (UTC)
Yes, and (like the image on en:) it doesn't have a source. BTW, I'd like to have input on en:Wikipedia:Copyright on emblems. Lupo 09:14, 27 June 2006 (UTC)
Fixed that "no source" problem myself. Lupo 13:10, 27 June 2006 (UTC)

Ancient coinsEdit

At nl:Wikipedia:Te_verwijderen_afbeeldingen#CharlesS, nl:Wikipedia:Te_verwijderen_afbeeldingen#Toegevoegd_26.2F05_Deel_2 and nl:Wikipedia:Te_verwijderen_afbeeldingen#Toegevoegd_26.2F05_Deel_3 someone listed a number of photographs of ancient coins. Examples are nl:Afbeelding:ADLOCVT COH.jpg, nl:Afbeelding:JuliaPaula.jpg and nl:Afbeelding:VitelliusSest.jpg. Many of them are not in use on the Dutch wiki, I would like to move them to commons.

License info as to where the uploader got them from is missing, and the uploader no longer seems to be active so we cann't ask him. Because the photos essentially show a 2D-surface, and the coins date back many centuries, we hope they can be classified as PD-old.

I would welcome your opinions on this before I start uploading the whole series on commons.

TeunSpaans 19:37, 26 June 2006 (UTC)

As these pictures are photographs of three-dimensional objects, Commons:Derivative works applies. Don't upload unless the photography is certainly under a free license. --Fb78 12:41, 28 June 2006 (UTC)
(just call me stupid if this is too simple) The decision tree on Commons:Derivative works shows that if a derivative work of a 3-d object isn't PD-old (in this case not sure, so let's say it isn't PD-old), the next step is to determine if the work, in this case the photograph of the coin, is over the threshold of originality. I'd wonder if this is reached for these pictures. They're all made directly above the coin, there's no composition or something like that... Wouldn't that amount to a (too) low threshold of originality for it to be copyrightable? NielsF 23:46, 28 June 2006 (UTC)
I personally also feel that the photos are not original enough to have a copyright of their own - I can't say if a judge would agree, though. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 08:23, 29 June 2006 (UTC)
Generally. almost all photographs are copyrighted. "There is little doubt that many photographs, probably the overwhelming majority, reflect at least the modest amount of originality required for copyright protection. "Elements of originality . . . may include posing the subjects, lighting, angle, selection of film and camera, evoking the desired expression, and almost any other variant involved."[13] It's just that reproductions of 2-dimensional objects allow almost no original variation, therefore Bridgeman vs. Corel applies.
You will probably agree that you can photograph coins with different sets of lighting, backgrounds, angles etc. If there is a court rouling that says otherwise, I'd like to see it.
Don't you agree that we shouldn't start uploading pictures without source for which we can't prove that they are in the public domain? You are going to create a precedence here, for which you can't prove that it's legal. By uploading these images, you are telling people that they can upload any photograph of a 3d object as long as they think the photograph is not very original. Copyright is not in the eye of the beholder. I strongly oppose the idea. --Fb78 10:16, 29 June 2006 (UTC)
I agree that the photo is copyrighted. The 2D surface isn't copyrighted though, so anyone is free to draw a replicate. Or they can photoshop it so that you can't tell where from it originated. / Fred Chess 10:45, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

Thx for your reactions. I understand that they should be regarded as 3D, not as 2D. This makes them copyrighted and unsuitable for inclusion here. It also has implications for their presence on the Dutch wiki, but I'll discuss those implications there. TeunSpaans 05:48, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

FYI: the coins have been removed from the Dutch wiki for the reasons stated here. TeunSpaans 19:53, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

3-D objectsEdit

I have some objections to use comertial photos of products such like those graphics shown down. Il semms to be more likely fair use (not only in US gov. meaning) - but also fair use thought as use of good will. If we can use such photos that, are including a labels of products and it's Trade Marks - could be thoutht as kind of comertial. If such photos are allowed - on the same way should be allowed taking photo of the standing book - that are 3-D objects in deed, an would be shown more likely as 3-D objects, or CD/DVD BoxSet.

Disputed kind of photos:

Cause I won't be so sure. Also I'm not sure is it legal to use (make publications, reeditions, and redystributions of) Trade Marks of any company withouth their knowledge and will. But if you say it can be used this way - I'd like to ask why cant we take the photos of books, or CDBoxes shown in the same way - as here~- it's kind of hipocrisy and discrimination, that Tm (more comertial) of one product can be in here, and the view of other's (less comertial - such as books) cannot? MonteChristof 11:25, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

Look, it doesn't matter if the product is commercial. (Books are commercial products, by the way!) What matters is if the design is copyrighted. I don't know if the Coca Cola signature is copyrighted. If it is, we will have to delete the photograph of the Coke can. This is not about trademarks, it's about copyright. These are different things. --Fb78 07:29, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

I would like to point out how Wikibooks deals with this issue. See the fair-use policy at Wikibooks, which was largely derived from a similar policy at the Italian Wikipedia. For trademarks and official government seals and symbols (like flags) (these are all really part of the same issue here) you have to make sure that any publication that uses these items must be about these items. BTW, copyright doesn't really enter in here as it is really an issue of trademark usage. Companies are attempting to use copyright so they can gain additional protection of some sort, but in this case you aren't copying the product and attempting to pass it off as if it were the original. These are images of the product, not copies of the product.

There is nothing illegal about taking a picture of somebody reading a copy of the New York Times. Yes, the content is copyrighted, but they can't control how it is used. The same thing applies here with a coke can.

Coca-Cola is particularly nasty as they have appropriated a specific color of red and claimed full ownership of that color, as well as the silly twisted ribbon, as a part of their trademark. But it is still trademark issues here, and if you are implying some sort of endorsement by the company, that would be inappropriate use of the trademark.

As far as if this sort of content should be on commons, I would have to strongly suggest that it be deleted on the same grounds as other logos have been deleted. The whole issue of fair-use I thought was something already decided on Commons as something everybody wanted to stay away from, and instead had to be dealt with individually on each local project? --RHorning 13:36, 20 July 2006 (UTC)

Derivative works have to be allowed. Why?Edit

Hi, I've been looking for the reasoning behind disallowing Creative Commons -ND- licenses, but couldn't find anything. Could someone please point me to the right direction? Thanks. --che 23:49, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

Because it is against our founding principles. We create and collect free content. See Commons:Project scope. Arnomane 00:36, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

Self RecordingEdit

Hi, would be okay if I recorded myself playing a piece of music (how long does the composer have to be dead for?) and uploaded it? It should be okay, right? Thanks. Gaodifan 15:57, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

If the composition is PD, it would be OK. In most countries, this means the composer has to be dead for at least 70 years (a few more if he was french). -- Duesentrieb(?!) 16:10, 30 June 2006 (UTC)
The works of the composer need to be out of copyright in the country where the recording is made. The particular work also needs to be out of copyright in the United States. That means that it needs to have been published before 1923, or be unpublished with the composer dead for more than 70 years to a first approximation. There are other possible way but they are very complicated. The work must be out of copyright in both the country where the recording was made and in the United States. David Newton 14:45, 3 July 2006 (UTC)


If an image is first uploaded on en: as PD, and later (by thesame user) on the Commons with combined GNU and CC-by-sa, the latter license is not proper because one cannot retract a release in the public domain, right? see en:Image:HKHopewellCentre.jpg and Image:HKHopewellCentre.jpg for an example. Circeus 00:37, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

That's right. Licenses shouldn't be revoked. But I'm no expert and I'm already glad when an image has a copyleftish licence such as CC-BY-SA. NielsF 00:45, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

Mosaics: 2- or 3-dimensional?Edit

Only 2-d images are PD, what about Mosaics then? Image:Justinian.jpg was originally uploaded to en:Image:Justinian.jpg as "noncommecial only", and later switched to {{PD-art}}, but does that case applies to mosaics? And by extension, is the image appropriate for Commons or not? Circeus 00:15, 2 July 2006 (UTC)


I've uploaded Image:Flag of Val d'Aran.png. It is a reworking of a GIF found elsewhere (and credited as a source), but as far as I understand there are no limits on reproducing a flag of a Spanish (in this case Catalan) comarca. But we don't seem to have an appropriate license for me to claim.

In the event that there is some reason we cannot host this on Commons, would someone please contact me rather than simply delete? We certainly can host it on en: on a fair use claim. - en:Jmabel | talk 02:49, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Why do you say "inherently uncopyrightable, flag of a territory"? What's the legal basis for this? See also en:Wikipedia:Copyright on emblems, which, being relatively new, may need improvements and or corrections despite having been reviewed informally by at least three other editors. Lupo 11:47, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

Image:Lune Venus.jpgEdit

The source site of this image allows free use of the image, "provided the photographers (authors) and the VT-2004 programme are indicated as source ". However, the image is tagged as GNU-FDL, which is apparently not correct. What would be the right license tag for this image? --Vesta 08:38, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

{{Attribution}} -- Duesentrieb(?!) 09:24, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
Thanks. --Vesta 10:39, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

Image:NGC 3982.jpgEdit

This image was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. The copyright statement cited on the Commons page is from the Space Telescope Science Institute, The source for this image is given as On the latter page, the image is credited to "Stephen Smartt (U. Cambridge), HST, ESA, NASA", and there is a link to the original source site (follow the link under "this image"), Note that copyright is claimed on this site, directly below the image, and the legal disclaimer on this page says: "The contents of the ESA Science & Technology website are intended for the personal and non-commercial use of its users. [...] ESA does not grant the right to resell or redistribute any information, documents, images or material from its website". Is it still fair to assume that this is a free NASA image?

Same problem for Image:NGC 1569.jpg and certainly a number of other images from the Space Telescope, as many users assume that all imgaes from HST are PD. --Vesta 08:30, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

What i'm actually wondering is this: who's the creator of HST images? After all, there's no "photographers" involved. I also don't see any creative orginality - so copyright doesn't really apply, does it? I'm not saying that we should just go ahead and treat HST images as PD - but we should investigate the issue. To me, it seems like the old "we paid for it, it's ours" argument, which does not apply in copyright (sweat of the brow vs. creativity) -- Duesentrieb(?!) 09:33, 7 July 2006 (UTC)
There are "photographer" involved, namely the astronomers who used the HST for their work. Take a look at the image credit of the original source page: "Image credit: European Space Agency and Stephen Smartt (University of Cambridge) The composite image was constructed with data from the ESO/ST-ECF Science Archive. Additional Hubble exposures were obtained by A. Saha (National Optical Astronomy Observatories), L. Labhardt (Universität Basel), F. Macchetto, N. Panagia (both Space Telescope Science Institute) A. Sandage (Carnegie Institution of Washington) and G. Tammann (Universität Basel)." So I assume that Stephen Smartt et. al. an be consideres as "photographers". And creative orginality probably arises from creating a beautiful image from rough science data. See, for example this page, and the subsequent pages there. --Vesta 09:50, 7 July 2006 (UTC)
I re-posted my original question on Commons:Help desk. If you want to add your comment, please do it there. --Vesta 08:05, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Mug shotsEdit

When I uploaded Image:Kozlowskimug1.jpg, I did not know that the status of mugshots was disputed. Should I use it for now on the article for Dennis Kozlowski on Wikipedia, or should I have it listed for speedy deletion, as I have done? Jesse Viviano 11:38, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

"Photographs of normal people who have not given their consent"Edit

  • There is some discussion about this above, but the discussion is a little old so I am reposting in a new section. I think this part of the policy is overly strict. I do not know the laws of all countries around the world, but in the US (where our main servers are based), you may photograph any person in any public place at any time, without any consent from them. I would like to remove this line from the policy. If it cannot be completely removed, then it needs to at least be made "case-by-case" depending on originating coutnry. Johntex 15:11, 8 July 2006 (UTC)
I think in this case we shouldn't just stay with the letter of the law, but think about ethics. I don't think it's OK to publish pictures of people on the web, even put them in a permanent image database, without their knowledge. Maybe you can legally take pictures of anybody, but uploading them on Commons is more than that: it's making them publicly available for the whole world to see, to download, to print. No matter if the photographer can legally be sued or not, it's a matter of fairness and decency not to do that without the person's consent. --Fb78 09:32, 9 July 2006 (UTC)
Johntex - first of all, where the servers are based is not relevant to where the photographer/uploader can be sued. Secondly, while I think you are right that in the US (and many other places) you are allowed to photograph people at will, you are not allowed to use/publish those photographs at will (because of personality rights - this is true in the US, EU, etc).
There are some cases where pictures of people are OK without asking - but the definitions are tricky, and there are a lot of borderline cases. Exceptions include:
  • if the person is not possible recognizable (this is hard to tell... if you know someone, you can often recognize them)
  • crowd sceenes (if individuals are verry small and hard to distinguish)
  • Public appearances (like making a public speach - and probably also demonstrations, but that is not quite clear... how about parades? festivals?...); Note that in case of a art performance, the performer may hold a copyright to the picture.
  • Peopl of public interest (politicians, etc); Note that this was recently limited in the EU to pictures of such people on duty - if you catch them on the beach, you are now no longer allowed to use the pictures.
So, "portrait shots" of random people are not OK without permission. For well known people, or images where individuals are not the main subject, we have to decide on a case by case basis. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 11:35, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

US Government questionEdit

I'm concerned about Image:Coronary artery stent.jpg, even though it appears on a government website, because of what I see in the MedlinePlus FAQ. If anyone agrees, please take the appropriate next step (whatever it is). -- JVinocur 20:58, 8 July 2006 (UTC)

You are correct: the FAQ explicitely mentiones ADAM material to be copyrighted. I'll tag it as {{Copyvio}} and notify the uploader. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 11:38, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

Using "free" data from "The Map Library"Edit

Wikipedia: The Map Library

I came across these people trying to look for satellite maps to contribute. They provide raster & vector files you can build images from: I'd like someone to look into this as a data source; however, the licensing for something given as "free" is vague. Their data is derived from other NGO or government sources, so maybe it'd be licensed under those groups? Cwolfsheep 13:11, 12 July 2006 (UTC)

  1. I did some more study, and it appears it'd be standard public-domain stuff. I made a template, Template:PD-MapLibrary

PR MaterialEdit

I have a lot of PR photographs was distributed freely to the press by motorcycle manufacturers. These are high quality shots made by professional photographers; any which one simply looks ten times as good as all those on the German article on, for example, Harley-Davidson.

Can I upload them - and under which licence? Should I not do it although I could, for fear of abuse of Wikipedia for advertising? --Cancun 16:50, 13 July 2006 (UTC)

You can only upload them if you have a permission for a free license from the copyright holder. Press material usually is copyrighted (even it can be downloaded without charge) and thus cannot be uploaded on Commons. --Matt314 18:35, 13 July 2006 (UTC)

Car company logosEdit

There is a whole category: Category:Car company logos. I think it is beyond common sense that any of these photos would stand as standalone works eligible to be released under a free licence or into public domain. Do you really think that any U.S. court would say "hey - this is indeed not a GM logo, it is a PD photo of a GM logo made by User:Smart so indeed feel free to do what you want with it"? --Dzordzm 10:28, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

I think you are correct. They were nominated for deletion a while ago but they weren't deleted. As I remember it, it was because no admin wanted to do the task of orphaning and deleting them. / Fred Chess 12:24, 14 July 2006 (UTC)
There are no doubt some car company logos which are public domain (eg, those of US auto companies that went out of business before 1923) but I suspect the majority of items in this category would be classified as clearly deriverative works of copyrighted material. -- Infrogmation 03:32, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
There is no pre-1923 public domain use of trademarks. That doesn't exist at all. Trademark issues and copyright issues are two totally seperate sections of law, including international law. Please don't confuse the issues in any way, shape, or form like this. The granting of trademarks is perpetual and there is no time to suggest, even for many of those very old automotive trademarks for the fly-by-night companies that only produced a few cars, that you can point to and suggest would be in the public domain. Instead you have to prove that there is no current owner of the trademark, and something that I would not want Commons to get into.
The National Broadcasting Company in the USA (also known as NBC television, now NBC-Universal) decided to change their primary trademark logo from the traditional peacock to a giant "N" that had two colors. It turns out that there was a Nebraska television broadcaster who had been using that logo for 20 years before NBC decided to use the logo, but NBC wasn't aware of the situation until after they had changed the masthead for all of their programming and even the letterhead and buildings. And this was with people who should have known about trademark law, where some trademark lawyers lost their jobs in a very public screw-up. There is no way that us simpletons here can make the same determination that any given logo isn't already owned by somebody else.
In addition for automobiles, you have to remember that many of the car companies of the past were actually purchased by many of the current major automotive companies. It wouldn't surprise me that any of the car logos you think are "in the public domain" are actually owned by companies like GM, Ford, or Damler-Chrysler. Using those logos would be in violation of trademark law unless it was through fair-use provisions. And fair-use content is not allowed on Commons, so it must be deleted even if the logo was apparently last used over 200 years ago. --RHorning 15:37, 22 July 2006 (UTC)

Question about a mapEdit

I just ran across Image:Catalunya+Comarques+English.jpg. The uploader says its his own work; I don't doubt that the labelling is his, but I'd be surprised if one person made this topographically detailed map from scratch, rather than basing this on another (uncredited) map.

I don't know my way around Commons well. If someone wants to move this discussion to a more appropriate place, feel free. And if someone needs to ask me something to follow up, please hit my user talk page either here or on en:, because I won't be watching this page. - en:Jmabel | talk 03:29, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

Images covered by template {{PD-Pe}}Edit

More than 200 images are covered under the Template:PD-Pe blanket. However, the legal text referred in the template (Decreto Legislativo 822, hereinafter DL822) is quite specific:

  • Photos are subject to copyright protection (DL822, 5 h)
  • Protection for photos lasts life+70 (DL822, 52) or 70 years after creation year (DL822, 144)
  • Some things are not protected (DL922, 9)
  • The provisions of DL822, 9 b are invoked in the template. However, 9 b specifically states:
    Artículo 9º.- No son objeto de protección por el derecho de autor:
    [...] b) Los textos oficiales de carácter legislativo, administrativo o judicial, ni las traducciones oficiales de los mismos, sin perjuicio de la obligación de respetar los textos y citar la fuente.
  • An approximate translation to English of above text would be: «[the following items] are not subject to copyright protection: [...]b) Official texts of legislative, administrative or judiciary nature, nor their official translations, without prejudice of the obligations of respecting the texts[' integrity(?)] and citing the source.»

It seems pretty clear to me that the alleged exemption does not apply to photographic works. Comments? Suggestions? Cinabrium 17:24, 18 July 2006 (UTC)

Agree --Historiograf 17:46, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
Yup. Agree completely; this should be interpreted very narrowly to only apply to textual works of the kinds mentioned (laws, edicts, official informations of the public, court decisions). Many countries have such an exemption in their copyright laws, and in all cases I know, it is to be taken literally. It does not apply to any other kind of governmental publication, and it doesn't apply to images. Lupo 19:18, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
If you can read Spanish, please take a look at Template talk:PD-Pe. --Dodo 11:27, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Question for correct copyright tag -Only authorized to use for wikipediaEdit

I have been granted permission to use a few images but only under the condition that they will be used for wikipedia only and other people will not be allowed to use it. They also want me to credit the original copyright holder. Can someone please help me find the correct copyright tag? Thanks!

James Blanchard 00:35, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

You won't find that tag here, I'm sorry. Only for wikipedia isn't good enough for Commons or any other Wikimedia project, I guess. In short there are 3 criteria that an upload/image must adhere to here: republication and distribution is allowed, publication of derivative work is allowed and commercial use ise allowed. NielsF 00:44, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Why is that? Why can't I use a picture if the copyright holder gives me permission? I didn't intend to upload it to commons but only for wikipedia because I know it is not allowed for commons. No point to have it for commons since it can not be distributed or used by any third party. Are you sure that I can not use it or use a certain tag that can explain it?
James Blanchard 02:57, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

Wikimedia (and thus also Wikipedia) is all about free content - that is, content that can be reused by anyone, for any purpose. This is one of the golden unchangable rules set by the the Wikimedia Foundation for all projects. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 09:54, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

I would have to agree here that this goes against the purpose of the GFDL, and why Wikipedia was set up. It states very clearly when you add content to Wikimedia projects that you must agree to publish that content under the GFDL, which also implies commercial reuse of the content (see Commons talk:Licensing/Explaining why Derivative Work and Commercial Use must be allowed). Some image licenses that are compatable by being published simultaneously with GFDL content are permitted to also be used, and that is the standard that must be applied. If the content can't be used simultaneously with the GFDL, it simply can't be used at all. A Wikipedia-only license would be one of those that would violate the terms of content published with the GFDL and hence couldn't be used at all with the Wikipedia. That would be a waste of server space here on commons. --RHorning 15:45, 22 July 2006 (UTC)

2.0 in menuEdit

Could we get CC-By-2.0 in the pulldown menu on the upload page? A lot of pics on Flickr, for instance, are using that license. heqs 17:46, 21 July 2006 (UTC)


Are images from here considered free enough for here? User:Zscout370 (Return fire) 04:38, 22 July 2006 (UTC).

Not at all. They allow free reproduction of their contents, but do not allow derivative works. Please read their copyright notice: IRIN materials (articles, photographs, radio broadcasts and films) may be reposted on a web site or reprinted in media services and humanitarian reports free-of-charge. The reprinting/re-posting of IRIN materials by commercial and non-commercial media services in print or on the web and their reproduction for TV or radio broadcasts is also permitted free-of-charge. Outside of this use, IRIN material may not be sold, syndicated or adapted in any way without the written consent of IRIN. Cinabrium 05:55, 22 July 2006 (UTC)

Copyright problemEdit

Would someone deal with Image:Tiger Woods 23.07.06.jpg? It falls under copyright and doesn't belong here. Thanks. 06:01, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for bringing the image to our attention, I have deleted it. In the future, you can mark such images with {{Copyvio}}. More about how to use the copyvio template: Commons:Deletion guidelines#Speedy deletion. -Samulili 07:46, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Image:Shahidka beslan.jpgEdit

I uploaded an image (Image:Shahidka beslan.jpg), a screenshot of a video taken by the hostage takers (now dead) of the Beslan School hostage crisis, which has now been deleted, with the reason that it was a copyright violation. The video has since been released by the Russian government and shown on numerous tv-channels. I would expect its a clear cut case of an image being in the public domain. Rune X2 09:19, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

And by what definition of "public domain" would that be? "used by the government"? "someone claimed fair use"? -- Duesentrieb(?!) 10:13, 25 July 2006 (UTC)
You tell me. The photo was delete for copyright violation. But who has copyright of the video? If the, now dead, terrorists could be said to own it, they made it specifically for public distribution – relinquishing their copyright (if it can be said they ever had one). The Russian government, the most reasonable owner of the video, has itself released it into the public domain. Rune X2 10:33, 25 July 2006 (UTC)
Who has the copright? The creator, his/her hires or someone he explicitely signed the copyright to. I don't know much about russion copyright, but judging from what applies in most countries:
  • now dead, terrorists could be said to own it - yes, the creator has the copyright. If he's dead, his hires (family) own it.
  • they made it specifically for public distribution – relinquishing their copyright - newspapers, advertisements, tv-shows etc are made specifically for public distribution. Do you think by that they "relinquish their copyright"?
  • The Russian government, the most reasonable owner of the video - how would the Russian government get the copyright to the video? Well, I guess they could somehow "disown" the current owners... is that legally possible in Russia? Did it happen? I don't know, please find out...
  • ...has itself released it into the public domain. - where does it say so? Even if it was original work of the Russion government, I don't think it would automatically be PD. That automatism is pretty much unique to the US federal government.
Generally: the fact that someone is a convicted criminal or terrorist does not change anything about the copyright. Nazi war criminals own copyrights, members of the RAF (i mean Read Army Fraction, not Royal Air Force) own copyrights, etc. In many cases, governments, news agencies, etc simply ignore that; I don't think we should do the same, at least not without some legal backup. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 11:08, 25 July 2006 (UTC)
"yes, the creator has the copyright. If he's dead, his hires (family) own it."
Also if the media was created in ways that violates laws. Does the recorder of happy-slapping recordings own the recordings?
“newspapers, advertisements, tv-shows etc are made specifically for public distribution. Do you think by that they "relinquish their copyright”
Ok. So not relinquished. But how can it be classified as copyright violation, to use the media in the intended way?
how would the Russian government get the copyright to the video?
The video was unlawfully recorded without the consent of the hostages, I'd think that invalidates any copyright of the original recorders. If someone rapes a girl and videotapes it, does the rapist have copyright of the recordings?
Can't we assume that if a state wherein a recording was made by citizens of that state, releases a video to the public. That the creators no longer hold copyright? Rune X2 11:48, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

As I said, I do not know the details of Russian law, so I can't make any definitive statements bout it. But I'll try to answer based from what I gather from prvious discussions. First of all, there are two distinct cases:

  • 1) The creation of the video itself is a violation of a law. In that case, the creatopr can a) be punished for making it and can probably b) not used it. But as far as I know, no one else can either. A state sure has the power to make such a work PD (any work, in fact), but that would have to be by an explicite law or ruling.
  • 2) The video shows an illegal act. In that case, I'm pretty sure the creator has a copyright; whoever performed the illegal action shown can be punished for it of course. If the people shows "victims", the video can not be published without their consent, because of personality rights.
  • Anyway: Use of any material in any way without explicit consent by the copyright owner is a copyright violation (with the exception of fair use - no idea how that's defined in russia); An example: If a company publishes an add in newspaper A, and newspaper B prints it too for some reason, that's a copyright violation - depending on context, the company may or may not like it. Note that apperently, in russia a written permission on paper is required (see recent dscussion on the village pump).
  • Also: What do you mean by a state "releasing a video to the public"? Is there an official statement saying that the media is declared PD? Or do you just mean "make available for viewing"? In the latter case, no, that does definitely not mean it's PD. It does not even mean that if the video was created by state officials (in most contries, with the notable exception of the US).

For any more details, please ask someone who actually knows russian law. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 12:16, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

Consequences of PD-US for use in international WikipediasEdit

We've got this image, Image:Hipatia.jpg, of which we cannot verify it is PD-art for we do not now the author "Gasparo's" date of death or if his name is a pseudonym. However, the image has first been published in 1908 in New York, so it qualifies for {{PD-US}}.

Am I mistaken that the image must not be used in any non-specifically US-American Wikimedia project, i. e. we can't use it anywhere? Seriously, is there actually a project apart from the Commons where such an image can be used?

The image is not public domain in the EEA, so we can't even use it the english Wikipedia, I reckon, let alone in the other Wikipedias. Is that so?

(Apart from that, this image does not appear to be PD even in the US, since its copyright has been restored in the EEA by the Directive on harmonising the term of copyright protection, so its copyright has been restored in the US as well with the Uruguay Rounds Agreement Act, which became effective in the U.S. on January 1, 1996. But that is quite another issue). --Wikipeder 10:42, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

There are certainly cases of unresolved problems with international use of "PD-US" images, but I'm not sure that this is one of them. I don't see that the Directive on harmonizing is relevent unless the image was created in what would later be part of the EU or by a citizen of there. It certainly is PD within the US at least. BTW, while I don't know the details of this case, it was fairly common US practice at the time that spot illustrations for publications were by hire with the publisher, not the artist, having the copyright. -- Infrogmation 15:55, 26 July 2006 (UTC)
Never mind the Uruguay Round for the moment. The point is that it seems that anything that is PD exclusively in the US is useless even to the English Wikipedia and all the more to each of the other Wikipedias and Wikimedia sister projects. Or isn't it? --Wikipeder 20:54, 26 July 2006 (UTC)
It was once thought that PD-US applied worldwide, but it was then argued on the talk page (template_talk:PD-US) that this wasn't true. I'm still not sure about it, although it appears in general that these images can be used worldwide. / Fred Chess 14:17, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
After further investigations, especially after reading template_talk:PD-US more carefully, I see that PD-US is applicable in all countries that have signed the Bern Convention, except if they have a separate copyright treaty with the U.S. (as Chile, Canada, Germany and Switzerland have). / Fred Chess 08:54, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
No. Read more carefully. A U.S. work for which PD-US applies would also be PD in other countries that follow the rule of the shorter term. That includes signatory countries of the Berne Convention, but only if they implement §7(8) of the Berne Convention, which is optional :-(, and if those countries did not have older bilateral treaties with the U.S. that did not include such a rule of the shorter term. It also includes countries who did have older bilateral treaties if those treaties did include a rule of the shorter term. It also includes countries who did not sign the Berne Convention but who have bilateral treaties with the U.S. including such a rule. The big problem is knowing whether (a) there are such old bilateral treaties that are still in effect, and (b) if so, whether or not they included a rule of the shorter term. For Germany and Switzerland (an apparently also Chile and Canada), we do know that they had such treaties, which are still valid, and which do not contain a rule of the shorter term. Lupo 10:39, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

Commercial potentialEdit

If I upload a photo under the lengthy "Own work, copyleft. Multi-license with GFDL and Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.5 and older versions (2.0 and 1.0)" does that mean that anyone who wants to use the photo needs to contact me first to ask which license they may use? If so, I assume that does not apply to Wikipedia and related projects. Also, if I upload an edited version (including smaller image size and/or compressed), does the license then also apply to the original? The reason I ask is that I have almost, but not entirely, given up on making money with my photographs. On the one hand it would be a shame not to make my photographs available to the public but on the other hand I don't want others to make money with them (indirectly, through use in a magazine or such) without me seeing any money. Also, is it relevant that I'm Dutch? And if the answer to my first question is 'no', does that mean they can pick a license of their own choice and would it then be better to use GFDL or CC-by-sa? Finally, does the 'by'-bit (implicit in the GFDL?) mean that my name (and a contact option?) need to be instantly visible? Some of my photos have already been used on commercial websites, sometimes without my name clearly visible - one has to actively search for that info. Sorry about the many questions, but I'm very bad at legalese (I really just want to make photos). For some examples of my photos see DirkvdM 12:14, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Multi-license means they can choose which license they wish to use, not that they have to ask you. It is fine to license thumbnails freely and reserve your rights on the original hi-res images - the license only applies to that version of the image (ie the low-res version).
Please be aware that all free licenses allow commercial use, with the possible caveats of: attribution, share-alike requirement and requirement to reprint license (this is the GFDL). The last one is usually prohibitive enough to stop commercial users IMO.
I suggest you read the actual text of the Creative Commons CC-BY license. It is better for you to read it and understand exactly what you're agreeing to, than for others to give you their interpretation. Also, CC offers Dutch versions of their licenses (in Dutch, and possibly tweaked for the Netherlands legal system). See . HTH. --pfctdayelise (translate?) 13:23, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
Ok, I suppose it's best to license under GFDL because that's most restricting and upload halfsize images (1000x700 or so), which should be good enough for Wikipedia (I'd have to go a bit easy on the compression, I suppose).
One thing I still worry about is how explicitly my name should be attached to the photos. On Wikipedia, I am not allowed to put my name under the photos in the articles (tried that :) ), so I suppose anyone else can also put that somewhere where hardly anyone is going to see it (unless they really want to find out). So my idea of my name cropping up all over the place so people will start noticing it (which was my major goal) will not work. Do I get this right? Also, what do they need to disclose? Just my name? Or can I specify more? Such as where they got it? I'd prefer people to come either here or to my own site (once I have one), where they can see a wider selection.
And it's too bad non-commercial licensing (such as cc-nc) isn't allowed on WikiMedia. Why is that? DirkvdM 10:18, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Well, let's be clear about this from the outset: if you want to contribute images to Wiki*edia in order to increase your profile and fame as a photographer, it's not the greatest idea. If you want to contribute images to increase the sum of free world knowledge -- that's more like it. So have a think about that. Wiki*edia is not a publicity machine in disguise.
Every image on Wikipedia links to its image description page. On those pages, you can put as big a credit as you like. That's the place to "advertise" yourself. Put links to your website, if you like. (If you do, be sure to mention that only the low-res version is under the free license.) You can put name credits on the image itself, but be aware that anyone is free to crop them back off or otherwise remove them, and also everyone really, really hates them.
I strongly suggest you actually read the text of the GFDL (or listen to it). There is no replacement for actually reading the text of what you might be agreeing to.
If you want to get a bit of fame around Wikipedia as a photographer, I suggest you nominate your images for Featured pictures.
NC images are not allowed because they restrict one's freedom of use to an unacceptable extent. GFDL allows commercial use. Also read this mail from Jimbo on the subject. --pfctdayelise (translate?) 23:42, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Return to the project page "Licensing/Archive 3".