Commons talk:WikiProject Public Domain/URAA review

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Starting the review[edit]

I think that we should consider starting the URAA review. There are some things that I'd like to have done:

  1. If a {{Not-PD-US-URAA}} file is uploaded now, I think that we should immediately tag it as copyvio so that the uploaders become aware of the URAA issue. For older uploads, we proceed more slowly.
  2. Let's create tracking categories for URAA-related deletion requests (cf. Category:France FOP cases with subcategories).
  3. Let's start proposing obvious URAA problems for deletion, such as the ones already tagged as {{Not-PD-US-URAA}}. Maybe we could start with whole categories (such as subcategories to Category:Movie posters of Japan: must be pre-1946 to be PD in the United States) since all images in such categories are to be deleted for the same reason. Maybe URAA-related requests should run for at least a month instead of the usual limit of at least one week so that other projects get the time to upload fair use copies of any needed files.
  4. Maybe set up a bot which complains if users only specify a non-US copyright tag without telling why the image is out of copyright in the United States? --Stefan4 (talk) 15:13, 13 April 2012 (UTC)
Yes to all of those (though #4 sounds a bit harder). For #1, we can do some template magic like {{OTRS pending}} using the REVISION magicwords, so that files uploaded after, say 1 May, get automatically tagged with some kind of problem/delete-me tag. (REVISION will also apply to new edits to old files as well as to new uploads, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.) Rd232 (talk) 15:57, 13 April 2012 (UTC)
I agree with all those points, but I think #1 is the most urgent, as it will stop the problem from getting worse. Also, I've requested that the wording on the template be updated to reflect that we are no longer trying to decide what to do with such files, but that we are reviewing them, and that non-PD-US files that aren't freely licensed will be deleted. cmadler (talk) 16:48, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I do agree, mostly. #1, yes, we should add a date on that such that any upload after the date on the tag is subject to speedy deletion. #2 is also a good idea... I think we should break up the images by country, as we can investigate the situation for a particular country more carefully, and also find a way to give associated local wikipedias the chance to copy them locally if the works are OK by their own rules (or they wish to convert to fair use). We could use the first argument to Not-PD-US-URAA to auto-categorize, and if the argument is missing, make that a processing queue. #4.... oof. That's going to be a ridiculous number of images, creating a backlog that nobody will go through. Not sure about that. Perhaps it could be cut down by ignoring anything with a date earlier than 1923 in its date field as a practical consideration. Carl Lindberg (talk) 17:02, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
OK, so I propose that we do this:
  • Any file uploaded on 1 May 2012 or later may be speedily deleted.
  • Likewise, any file unused by Wikimedia projects may be speedily deleted, regardless of upload date.
  • Older uploads which are in use on at least one Wikimedia project are subject to a deletion request which lasts for at least one month so that projects are given some time to upload files locally if they want them.
  • Deletion requests are sorted into categories such as Category:Swedish URAA cases/pending, Category:Japanese URAA cases/kept and Category:German URAA cases/deleted. Also try to use Category:Undelete in YYYY whenever possible.
  • These plans are announced on as many village pumps as possible (also on other Wikimedia projects) and also on COM:VPC and COM:AN.
  • Maybe less urgent, but we should probably create a {{no United States license}} template similar to {{no license since}} for works possibly unfree in the United States if we are unable to find a year of first publication. This would of course only be used in the case of speedy deletions.
Stefan4 (talk) 17:22, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I agree with all Stefan4's bullet-points above except the second. A file tagged Not-PD-US-URAA uploaded in good faith (before May 1) and not used on any WMF project should get a 7-day deletion tag such as {{nsd}}, {{nld}}, {{npd}}, or {{dw-nsd}}. cmadler (talk) 17:47, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
I would call the 7-day deletion tags speedies: they are subject to speedy deletion if correct information hasn't been provided within 7 days. However, this is just a matter of terminology. If you don't mind, I'll try to create a {{no United States license since}} (and a similar talk page notice) to be used in the same way as {{no license since}}. --Stefan4 (talk) 18:01, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
Sorry, I'm used to thinking of speedy deletion in the en-wp sense, where it means "as soon as an admin gets to it, probably within a couple hours of tagging". cmadler (talk) 18:33, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
May 1 sounds good. The second point, well, I think we should review each image, to make sure the Not-PD-US-URAA tag was accurate. I'm betting there are at least a few French or Italian images were people assumed 70pma where in fact the terms were 50pma plus wartime extensions (Italy had a 6-year extension, France 8 or 9). This is the idea of separating them into countries first, so that we can make clear of the rules for that country before deleting them. But if the tag is accurate, and not in use, then yes I could see speedy for them at that point, though if a local project is based on that country's copyright law only, some sort of notification to give them the option of transfer may be nice. For ones in use... OK, a monthlong DR sounds good. I guess the point is we should break them up into countries for processing first, double-check that the tag is valid, and then move to some sort of deletion only at that point. Category names should probably use "Sweden" and not "Swedish" etc, since the existing parameter is the country name, not the demonym. For others that we notice, we could start adding the the Not-PD-US-URAA tag to get them into the same type of processing queue, once we have worked out the kinks. And once we're done, frankly, the Not-PD-US-URAA tag itself could serve as your "no United States license" speedy tag, so I'm not sure there's a need to create another one. Carl Lindberg (talk) 18:48, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
Of course we need to review the files first. The "no United States license" tag was meant as a 7-day tag for files where we can't determine the US copyright status (e.g. unknown year of death or unknown year of publication), to sort them out from the other not yet checked {{Not-PD-US-URAA}} cases. Category:Works possibly copyrighted in the U.S. is full of such situations, e.g. File:Harry Liedtke-Ross 284-1-Binder.jpg. Maybe there are not enough unused files with unknown URAA status, though, so it might not be worth the trouble to set up yet another template. --Stefan4 (talk) 19:12, 27 April 2012 (UTC)
Ah OK, I see the Not-PD-US-URAA tag has some more parameters which are there to indicate some ambiguity. OK, fair enough. Perhaps having a separate unentangled template for this case would be a good idea. Fair enough. Carl Lindberg (talk) 15:52, 28 April 2012 (UTC)
1 May has now come. I suggest that we post a notice at COM:AN and various village pumps and then start the review. --Stefan4 (talk) 17:59, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

If we're going to do it, we should probably move on #1 above. Specifically, is it possible to set up a bot to tag any pages to which Not-PD-US-URAA is added (but not pages that already have it) with {{Copyvio}}? Also, if that is what we do, Not-PD-US-URAA should be updated to make it clear that any pages to which its added are subject to speedy deletion as copyvio. cmadler (talk) 19:51, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

Bot: I assume that it is possible to make such a bot. Is there a way to use wiki code to obtain the date of the earliest revision of a page? In that case, we could instead make the template a redirect to {{copyvio}} if the earliest revision is too recent. Alternatively, just put them in the normal category and let us tag as {{copyvio}} whenever we see any of them. After all, we're going to go through the whole category anyway. The date 1 May should maybe be postponed by a week as a thing like this ought to be announced in advance. --Stefan4 (talk) 20:19, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

Could we start with the {{copyvio}} tagging immediately? It seems that many {{Not-PD-US-URAA}} files have been added to Commons today, e.g. File:AC Rowing Eight 1950.PNG, File:KeithMiller1954.jpg and File:HS Rowing Team 1950.PNG. --Stefan4 (talk) 14:30, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

Let's put the note on Not-PD-US-URAA, yes, and start deleting anything newly uploaded using that tag. Carl Lindberg (talk) 14:47, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

In case you haven't noticed, a deletion request was created a few days ago: Commons:Deletion requests/Various PD-Australia after 1945. --Stefan4 (talk) 15:09, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

To get something done, I've now tried starting a new deletion request: Commons:Deletion requests/Files in Category:Dagens Nyheter. It would be nice if the review could go further. --Stefan4 (talk) 15:50, 8 June 2012 (UTC)

Just a question...[edit]

Some templates like {{PD-UKGov}} claim that they apply "worldwide". Does this mean they're exempt from all the URAA troubles, or not? -- Liliana-60 (talk) 18:11, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

The British government claims that {{PD-UKGov}} applies worldwide. This claim is interpreted as being (more or less) equivalent to {{PD-author|Her Majesty's Government}}. As such, we do not need to care about URAA issues for British Crown Copyrights. However, it is entirely possible that we need to care about URAA issues related to other Crown Copyrights related to the same queen, e.g. {{PD-Canada-Crown}}. --Stefan4 (talk) 19:38, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

EU Directive[edit]

We need to take into account the cases where the EU directive was applied into national law after the URAA date, which means that for the purpose of considering whether a work is copyrighted in the US, older copyright terms may apply. France is one such case. As I just found out, Austria is another. Greece, Italy and Portugal also applied the EU directive after January 1 1996, so their legislation needs to be checked as well. -- Liliana-60 (talk) 21:43, 10 June 2012 (UTC)

Yes. Check the table at en:WP:Non-U.S. copyrights#Dates of restoration and terms of protection. The table also indicates the copyright term on the URAA date, if different from the present term. Some non-EU countries, such as Argentina and Russia, have also extended copyrights retroactively after the URAA date. --Stefan4 (talk) 21:51, 10 June 2012 (UTC)
Oh, I had no idea that table existed. -- Liliana-60 (talk) 21:53, 10 June 2012 (UTC)

What to do after[edit]

Hello, I think that these should not be deleted until there is a copy somewhere else, either in a local project, or on another storage place outside WMF sites. Wikilivres, hosted by Wikimedia Canada, can host these files. Regards, Yann (talk) 07:59, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Is there an effort underway be Wikilivres to copy these files? When should we expect such an effort to be completed? cmadler (talk) 13:47, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Nothing active now. I would support anyone volunteering for that. My connection is too poor, I can't run a bot, and I don't have the time. Yann (talk) 14:57, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Dcoetzee has started a bot to copy files to Wikilivres. Yann (talk) 08:48, 14 January 2013 (UTC)
Under the section Resources I have added a link to Category:Deleted files transferred to Wikilivres - I am unsure if it should go there, but it needs to be somewhere. -84user (talk) 06:32, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

Japanese posters[edit]

I have created URAA-related deletion requests for various Japanese posters:

Posters from 1946-1956 also need to be deleted, but there is another issue to take into consideration there: photos from that time were copyrighted for 10 years since publication, so if the posters exclusively consist of photos, they would be fine. If there are additional aspects, such as calligraphy, would we then only need to apply COM:TOO#United States and not COM:TOO#Japan, given that the calligraphy would be {{PD-Japan-organization}}? --Stefan4 (talk) 14:02, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

I think so; the U.S. would still apply their own threshold of originality to any restored works. If the photo is PD and not restored, and the only thing left is unadorned calligraphy, then it probably would still be PD in the U.S. Carl Lindberg (talk) 14:16, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

One thing we missed...[edit]

In the Hirtle chart, I found this thing:

1 March 1989 or later - Published without copyright notice, and in the public domain in its source country as of URAA date[2] - Use the US publication chart to determine duration

This can be a problem in some cases. One of those cases would be Romanian photos published in 1989 and 1990. Prior to 1996, Romanian photos had a copyright term of five years from publication; this would make these PD in Romania, and they were also PD on the URAA date. But if what the above says is correct, they would still not be free in the US.

The second thing: what if there was a copyright notice? The Hirtle chart does not cover that case, and I don't know US copyright law well enough to determine what would happen in this case. -- Liliana-60 (talk) 21:53, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

See en:WP:Non-U.S. copyrights#Subsisting copyrights. If there was a copyright notice, such works never entered the public domain and are still copyrighted in the United States. URAA just brought back some works from the public domain. If they had never been in the public domain in the first place, URAA didn't affect their copyright status. Copyright renewals had to be sent to the United States Copyright Office. While technically possible, I would guess that few non-US publishers went through the trouble to submit renewal registrations. Also keep in mind that {{PD-1996}} requires publication before 1 March 1989. If a work has never been published, it may still be copyrighted, regardless of the source country. For example, all {{PD-Sweden-photo}} photos were in the public domain on the URAA date, but unpublished photos with that template get a copyright term of life+70 years in the United States.
A special case: if the source country didn't have copyright relations with the United States on the date of first publication, then the work is only copyrighted in the United States if it was still copyrighted in the source country on the URAA date. --Stefan4 (talk) 22:42, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Files used in wikis[edit]

Project page "to do" list calls to "Do a query of all the files used in each wiki and inform the wikis about the numbers of "their" files that may be deleted.". Has such a query been done? If it has been, where can the results be read?--Pere prlpz (talk) 16:56, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

Furthermore, I see files being nominated for deletion. Have the wikis using those file been informed in order to decide to upload those files locally?--Pere prlpz (talk) 17:39, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

There is a tool for sending notifications, see m:User:Duesentrieb/CommonsTicker. It is up to the respective wiki projects to decide what they want to do with these notifications. For example, most projects seem to ignore them altogether. --Stefan4 (talk) 20:46, 25 July 2012 (UTC)
I don't think CommonsTicker is working. At least, its page says "out of service". We really should come up with a way of notifying projects, at least on the talk pages of the articles being used. Not sure we can always do it in the native language though. Carl Lindberg (talk) 21:30, 25 July 2012 (UTC)
Communities in wikis can hardly get motivated if we don't show them a list of the images they will lose. A query with the images used in any project and tagged with URAA templates would be great.
About notifications, my watchlist contents more that 10% of Wikipedia in Catalan, but I have never seen a notification for a deletion request, nor a message from anybody noticing these notifications. If notifications are being send, they aren't being noticed and the process should be improved.--Pere prlpz (talk) 21:42, 25 July 2012 (UTC)
CommonsTicker is not working from August 2008. CommonsNotificationBot is an alternative in development in, but it is locally focused. A global tool would be a nice service of Commons for projects. --V.Riullop (talk) 08:02, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

Let's not re-invent the wheel. We have User:Commons fair use upload bot, and AFAIK it is working. It doesn't upload to all fair use projects, but just uploading to en.wp keeps the file and file history intact, and is much much better than nothing. Non-fair-use projects (to say nothing of no-upload projects) can't really do anything anyway, so the only point of notifying them is to get help from their users in getting more info about files (which might mean saving a few more as PD). I suggest we draft a general notification template, which can be used by any reviews (there's the German stamps one as well, and there will probably be others in future). Since it doesn't need to be a proper template (it'll have to be copied and pasted to other projects), it can be a subpage of the wikiproject, like Commons:WikiProject Public Domain/Commons public domain review notification. These messages can be copied to relevant village pumps, used as a basis for a local watchlist message or similar, or even used as a basis for a m:CentralNotice (possibly). Rd232 (talk) 15:10, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

Local projects may not use the U.S. copyright rule. Perhaps they normally don't allow fair use but may make exceptions for works in the public domain in the most relevant countries. The point is projects should be notified, so they can decide what to do -- en-wiki may well prefer to not have them uploaded as fair use, depending on the image. Carl Lindberg (talk) 03:49, 27 July 2012 (UTC)
OK. Do you want to amend Commons:WikiProject Public Domain/Commons public domain review notification to reflect that? En-wiki would normally want stamp images if they're in use, I think. At least, if they agree to that, they can review transfers post-transfer (pre-transfer review will delay things even more, and at the end of the day, these are copyvios on Commons, whereas on enwiki "fair use" applies well enough even if the ludicrously strict enwiki Fair Use Rules don't.). Rd232 (talk) 06:52, 27 July 2012 (UTC)

Canadian Crown Copyright[edit]

Can somebody please update as necessary the images covered under PD-Canada which are crown copyright images? The Crown Copyright Office has affirmed that they feel these copyrights expire after 50 years. They feel that as a signatory of the URAA, this applies in any country that has also signed, namely the US. The copyright holder has confirmed the circumstances, I don't believe anything further is necessary (I can forward the appropriate emails if need be). - Floydian (talk) 19:22, 18 December 2013 (UTC)

That's interesting! Can you get that statement sent to OTRS so that the information is documented somewhere? There is also the specific template {{PD-Canada-Crown}} which should be updated. --Stefan4 (talk) 21:06, 18 December 2013 (UTC)
Emails have been forwarded to OTRS. Ticket number is 2013122310013986. - Floydian (talk) 21:16, 23 December 2013 (UTC)
I basically support Floydian's understanding. The answer he got from Public Works and Government Services Canada has been forwarded to ticket:2013122310013986. It clearly says that the government does not seek to renew its Crown copyright in the United States even if it's possible for them to do. So in a practical sense, I think it's safe to say that no one will claim and enforce the US copyright. Although, I also note that I didn't read it as a "release" into the public domain. whym (talk) 13:25, 30 December 2013 (UTC)
It's more or less the copyright holder validating that works of Crown Copyright that have become public domain are considered to be public domain worldwide by the copyright holder. - Floydian (talk) 03:51, 31 December 2013 (UTC)
Yes, and what I was trying to say was more like a question of 'is there any effective difference between a confirmation of the public domain status all over the world, and a release into the public domain in the US, from Commons' perspective? ' @Stefan4: any thoughts on this? --whym (talk)
There is an operation difference. Should US law become so draconian that us Wikimedians close down our servers in the US and host elsewhere, the difference would be a practical issue to discuss. -- (talk) 14:31, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
See Commons:Deletion requests/File:Burlington Skyway 1958.png, the issue which caused all of this, Stefan4, Jim, User:Asclepias, and myself take the position that it was not sufficient to put it in the public domain. There's a reason we require releases and Creative Commons licenses include the word "irrevocably." I happened to stumble upon this as Floydian did not make a note in the DR about this discussion. Ramaksoud2000 (talk) 16:51, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
Yes and about 15 other discussions that have hounded me for three odd years, where the goalposts have been constantly moved, and where seemingly nothing is good enough unless the Queen herself drops in by parachute to let us know that the law is pretty clear and to smarten up and read it without foggy glasses. Sorry if I wanted fresh insight instead of the broken record of over-precautionary deletionists. Jim has since changed his position with Clindberg's fresh perspective. - Floydian (talk) 17:56, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
No. Our policy is PD in the country of origin, and PD in the U.S. A U.S.-only PD declaration would only not be enough if it was still covered by copyright in the country of origin, in which case it is rather unlikely to get such a release. So if the release covers the U.S., then our policy is satisfied. As a practical matter, expiry in the country of origin also means expiry in all countries which use the rule of the shorter term as well. The emphasis on "worldwide" would be helpful (and it is likely that such a statement would likely apply elsewhere, unless it is made explicit that it is U.S.-only). But the fact it has expired in the country of origin already means it is PD in a large swath of the world. We host many works which are still under copyright in some countries, but where the country of origin and the U.S. are OK. And we host many works which have expired in the U.S. only, if the U.S. is the country of origin. Lastly, these are government works -- I've never heard of a government pressing a case in a foreign country so we have no clue about precedents. It's a very different situation than normal privately-held copyright -- the possibility of a problem is a pretty extreme theoretical one to begin with even without a statement, but once we do get such a valid statement, I think we're OK. A release to the public domain is different than a license; it is almost certainly irrevocable. Waived rights are different than licensed rights. Carl Lindberg (talk) 03:37, 15 January 2014 (UTC)

New policy proposal: Hosting of content released to the global public domain[edit]

Please see the related proposal at Commons:Hosting of content released to the global public domain. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 17:53, 31 December 2013 (UTC)

Do not be surprised...[edit]

Since 20.02.2014 I am tagging {{PD-AR-Photo}}-files with {{Not-PD-US-URAA}}. So far around 600 files tagged (live: 3807 transclusions, I am on letter "J" now of Category:PD-AR-Photo, currently with 8401 files). Gunnex (talk) 01:07, 26 February 2014 (UTC)

Mission accomplished. Around 1.100 files tagged = ~13 % of Category:PD-AR-Photo. Live are currently 4307 transclusions. Gunnex (talk) 07:45, 28 February 2014 (UTC)