User:LX/Licenser

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Det här är en exempelbaserad introduktion till komplexa upphovsrättsfrågor, avsedd för lekmän. Dess syfte är att hjälpa den som vill ladda upp en fil till Wikimedia Commons att avgöra om upphovsrätten tillåter detta.

Wikimedia Commons tar bara emot fritt innehåll, det vill säga bilder och andra mediafiler som kan användas av vem som helst i vilket syfte som helst.[1] Detta förklaras mer ingående nedan.

Wikimedia Commons tar bara emot mediafiler

  • som uttryckligen publicerats under en fri licens av upphovsrättsinnehavaran eller
  • som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten och är i allmän ägo åtminstone i ursprungslandet och i USA.

Wikimedia Commons kan inte ta emot och lagra ofritt innehåll med hänvisning till återgivningsrätten eller fair use; se förklaring nedan. Innehåll vars licens endast tillåter ickekommersiell användning godtas inte heller.

För varje fil måste licensen eller den upphovsrättsliga situationen tydligt anges på filens beskrivningssida med hjälp av en upphovsrättsmall. All information som krävs enligt mallen måste finnas på beskrivningssidan. Informationen ska vara tillräcklig för att andra ska kunna verifiera uppgifterna. Informationen anges lämpligen genom att tillhandahålla kompletta uppgifter vid ifyllning av formuläret som används vid uppladdning.

Vid inhämtning av licensgodkännande från andra upphovsrättsinnehavare bör brevmallen för detta användas.

Contents

Godtagbara licenser[edit]

En upphovsrättslicens är en formellt medgivande till användning av ett uphovsrättsligt skyddat verk och anger vem som får använda verket samt hur de får använda det. En licens kan endast utfärdas av rättsinnehavaren, vilket vanligtvis är upphovsmannen (fotografen, konstnären eller liknande).

Allt upphovsrättsligt skyddat innehåll på Commons måste lyda under en fri licens som ger alla rätten att använda innehållet oavsett syfte. I synnerhet måste licensen uppfylla följande villkor:

  • Återanvändning och spridning av innehållet måste tillåtas.
  • Spridning av härledda verk måste tillåtas.
  • Kommersiell användning måste tillåtas.
  • Krav på att alla upphovsmän som bidragit till verket anges är tillåtna
  • Krav på att publicerade härledda verk ska lyda under samma licensvillkor är tillåtna
  • Krav på att digital spridning måste ske med fria filformat utan åtkomstbegränsande teknik är tillåtna

Följande begränsningar får inte förekomma:

  • Tillstånd begränsade till Wikimediaprojekt (det enda undantaget är Wikimedias logotyper vars upphovsrätt innehas av Wikimediastiftelsen).
  • Tillstånd begränsade till ickekommersiella syften eller utbildningssyfte.
  • Tillstånd begränsade till användning inom återgivningsrättens gränser.
  • Krav på att upphovsrättsinnehavaren informeras om användning i alla eller en del sammanhang. (Önskemål får förekomma.)

De följande exemplen är i allmänhet inte tillåtna:

  • Skärmdumpar av datorprogram som inte själva lyder under en fri licens. Skärmdumpar av program som sprids enligt GPL eller liknande fria programvarulicenser godtas i allmänhet. Se Commons:Screenshots.
  • Skärmdumpar av tv-program, dvd-filmer och tv-spel. Se Commons:Screenshots.
  • Inskannade eller fotografiskt framställda kopior av upphovsrättsskyddade verk såsom omslag till böcker, cd-skivor och liknande. Se Commons:Derivative works.
  • Upphovsrättsligt skyddade symboler, logotyper och liknande. (Ej att förväxlas med varumärkesskydd.)
  • Modeller, masker, leksaker och andra föremål som representerar ett upphovsrättsligt skyddat verk, såsom en seriefigur eller filmroll (snarare än själva skådespelaren).

Commons tillåter också verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätt (verk i allmän ägo). Se avsnittet om #Verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten nedan.

Mer än en licens[edit]

Den här serien förklarar fördelarna med att använda flera licenser för verk som man skapat själv. Klicka för att se en större version.

Du kan godkänna användande under så många licenser som du vill så länge minst en av dem är en fri licens enligt de kriterier som anges ovan. Till exempel är filer med licenser som förbjuder kommersiell användning tillåtna bara om de samtidigt är tillgängliga under någon fri licens som tillåter kommersiell användning.

Användning av flera licenser kan vara önskvärt för kompatibilitet med andra projekts licenskrav. Det gör också så att den som skapar ett härlett verk och endast vill publicera det under den mer restriktiva licensen kan göra det. Med andra ord ger det skapare av härledda verk mer frihet att välja önskad licens.

Välkända licenser[edit]

Följande välkända licenser är att föredra för innehåll på Commons:

Som redan nämnts godtas även verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten (se nedan). Se Commons:Copyright tags för fler licenser.

Notera: GFDL är opraktisk för fotografier och korta texter, särskilt i tryck, eftersom de kräver att licenstexten återges i sin helhet i anslutning till verket. Därför är användning av flera licenser att föredra, det vill säga att man utöver GFDL bör tillhandahålla sina verk under exempelvis en fri licens från Creative Commons. GPL och LGPL rekommenderas inte heller som enda licens för egna verk om det kan undvikas, eftersom de inte är särskilt väl lämpade för annat än datorprogram.

Verk som inte finns tillgängliga under någon licens som uppfyller de krav som ställs i definitionen av fria kulturella verk är uttryckligen inte tillåtna. Se Wikimediastiftelsens styrelses resolution om licenser för mer information.

Vanliga exempel på licenser som ofta hittas på Internet men som inte tillåts på Commons:

  • Creative Commons-licenser med begränsningen Ickekommersiell (nc)
  • Creative Commons-licenser med begränsningen Inga bearbetningar (-nd)
  • Innehåll utan licens som endast kan användas inom ramen för återgivningsrätten, fair use eller liknande begränsade undantag från upphovsrättens skydd (se anledningarna nedan)

Licenser som inte godkänns får endast användas på Commons för verk som samtidigt publiceras under minst en godkänd licens.

Licensinformation[edit]

Exempelbild med all rekommenderad information angiven på bildbeskrivningssidan

Alla filbeskrivningssidor på Commons måste tydligt ange vilken licens som innehållet publicerats under, samt all den information som krävs av licensen. Beskrivningen ska också innehålla tillräckligt med information (såsom en länk som visar var bilden är tagen ifrån) för att andra ska kunna verifiera licensförhållandena, även om det inte krävs av licensen eller upphovsrätten.

Följande information måste anges på beskrivningssidan, oavsett om licensen eller upphovsrätten kräver det:

  • Licensen som innehållet publicerats under (eller en anledning till att verket inte omfattas av upphovsrätten). Detta bör anges med hjälp av en upphovsrättsmall.
  • Innehållets källa. Om den som laddar upp innehållet är dess upphovsman ska detta anges uttryckligen (till exempel med texten "eget verk" eller liknande). Annars bör källan anges genom en länk eller annan referens. Uppgifter som "överförd från Wikipedia" är i allmänhet inte tillräckligt, med undantag för verk som ursprungligen publicerats där (och då endast med mer utförliga uppgifter om ursprunglig adress och vilken användare som laddat upp filen). Det är den ursprungliga källan som är relevant.
  • Innehållets upphovsman (skapare). För äldre innehåll vars upphovsrättsliga skydd har upphört kan det även vara nödvändigt att ange vilket år upphovsmannen avlidit. (Se avsnittet om verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten nedan.) En mall som antyder att den som laddar upp filen innehar rättigheterna till densamma (såsom {{PD-self}}) är inte tillräckligt för att uppfylla detta krav. Det enda undantaget är om upphovsmannen önskar förbli anonym eller om upphovsmannen är okänd, förutsatt att det ändå finns tillräckligt med information för att säkerställa att verket verkligen inte skyddas av upphovsrätten (såsom uppgifter om när verket skapats eller publicerats).

Följande är inte lika viktigt, men bör alltid anges om möjligt:

  • En beskrivning av innehållet. Vad föreställer innehållet? Hur skapades det?
  • Uppgifter om vilket datum och på vilken plats innehållet har skapats. För äldre innehåll vars upphovsrättsliga skydd har upphört kan dessa uppgifter vara obligatoriska. (Se avsnittet om verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten nedan.)

Dessa uppgifter anges bäst genom användning av mallen Information. Se Commons:Första stegen/Kvalitet och bildbeskrivning för att läsa mer om hur mallen används.

Licensernas omfattning[edit]

I vissa fall kan ett dokument ha flera olika inslag som kan och måste omfattas av en licens. Alla som bidragit på ett väsentligt sätt har rättigheter till resultatet och alla måste göra sin del tillgänglig under en fri licens och detta måste anges på beskrivningssidan. (Se Commons:Derivative works.) Vad som räknas som ett väsentligt bidrag kan vara svårt att avgöra och varierar från land till land, men här följer några exempel för att förtydliga vad som avses:

  • För inspelningar av musikaliska verk måste rättigheterna till samtliga av följande inslag vara publicerade under en fri licens av respektive rättighetsinnehavare (angivet inom parentes) eller vara i allmän ägo:
    • melodi och arrangemang (kompositörerna)
    • sångtext (textförfattarna)
    • framförande (musikerna)
    • inspelningen (ljudteknikerna och skivbolaget)
  • För bilder av konstverk, bokomslag och liknande gäller följande:
    • Den som skapat originalverket har genom upphovsrätten rätt att kontrollera spridning av reproduktioner och avbildningar.
    • Den som avbildat verket har rätt till bilden, såvida det inte rör sig om ren exemplarframställning.
  • För bilder av byggnader gäller i vissa länder och under vissa omständigheter att den arkitekt som ritat en byggnad genom upphovsrätten har rätt att kontrollera spridning av bilder av byggnaden. Reglerna för detta och hur de skiljer sig mellan olika länder förklaras i Commons:Freedom of panorama.

Om ett avbildat verk inte är huvudmotivet är det möjligt att endast den som skapat det slutgiltiga verket är ensam rättighetsinnehavare. För detta krävs att syftet inte är att avbilda originalverket, utan att verket endast avbildas i obetydlig storlek och omfattning i syfte att visa ett annat motiv. Till exempel det i någon utsträckning förekomma upphovsrättsskyddade målningar i bakgrunden i ett fotografi vars huvudmotiv är en grupp människor i ett museum utan att fotografiet påverkas av konstnärernas rättigheter. Gränsen för vad som är tillåtet är inte alltid triviala.

Ren exemplarframställning skyddas vanligen inte av upphovsrätt; den som kopierar ett annat tvådimensionellt verk har inte upphovsrätt till resultatet, utan det enda som är relevant är rätten till originalverket. Detta gäller även skärmdumpar.

Verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten[edit]

Commons tar emot innehåll som är i allmän ägo (public domain), det vill säga att innehållet inte skyddas av upphovsrätten, till exempel på grund av verkets höga ålder eller låga verkshöjd. Upphovsrättslagstiftningen på detta område skiljer sig väsentligt från land till land, och ett verk som inte skyddas av upphovsrätten i ett land kan vara skyddat i ett annat. Internationella överenskommelser såsom Bernkonventionen anger vissa minimigränser för skyddets giltighet, men enskilda länder kan ha mer varaktiga skydd. En tumregel är att om upphovsmannen varit död i mer än 70 år är verket oftast i allmän ägo i upphovsmannens hemland och i det land som verket först publicerades i. Upphovsrätten till anonymt publicerade verk och kooperativt framställda verk (såsom uppslagsverk) upphör i allmänhet 70 år efter utgivning.

Många länder tillämpar en sådan 70-åriga giltighetstid. Ett undantag som är värt att notera är USA. Av historiska skäl har USA mer komplicerade regler. I USA gäller i allmänhet följande:

  • upphovsrätten till verk utgivna före 1978 utgår 95 år efter utgivning och
  • upphovsrätten till verk utgivna 1978 eller senare utgår
    • 70 år efter upphovsmannens död om verket är privat framställt och det inte är anonymt utgivet
    • 95 år efter utgivning (eller 120 år efter framställning om detta infaller tidigare) om verket är framställt i tjänst (work for hire) eller anonymt utgivet.

För verk som framställts före 1978 men utgivet först 1978 eller senare gäller särskilda regler. I USA gäller dessa regler även för verk från andra länder.

Information om var och när verket utgivits är nödvändig information. I många länder är allt som publicerats före ett visst datum i allmän ägo. I USA är detta datum den 1 januari 1923. I vissa omfattas verk som skapats av staten av upphovsrätten, i andra inte (se detaljer för respektive land nedan).

Den upphovsrättsliga situationen i USA för äldre verk från andra länder förändrades i och med godkännandet av en lag (Uruguay Round Agreements Act, URAA) som återställde det upphovsrättsliga skyddet för verk i USA om verket var skyddat i ursprungslandet vid en viss tidpunkt (1 januari 1996 för de flesta länder). Se Wikipedia:Non-U.S. copyrights på engelskspråkiga Wikipedia.

I vissa länder (såsom i USA) kan upphovsmannen uttryckligen försätta sitt verk i allmän ägo. I andra länder (såsom EU-länderna) är detta inte juridiskt möjligt, men där kan man istället ge envar rätten att använda verket fritt via en licens såsom en Creative Commons-licens.

Samverkan mellan upphovsrätt i USA och andra länder[edit]

Wikimedia Commons är ett internationellt projekt, men dess servrar är belägna i USA, och möjligheterna att använda projektets innehåll ska vara obegränsade som möjligt. Verk från andra länder än USA får därför endast laddas upp om de har publicerats under en licens som är giltig både i USA och i ursprungslandet, eller om de är i allmän ägo i båda länderna. Ursprungslandet är i allmänhet det land där den första publiceringen av verket ägt rum.

För avbildningar av konstverk måste både konstnärens och fotografens rättigheter beaktas, eftersom sådana avbildningar är baserade på originalverket. Om verket är tvådimensionellt (till exempel en målning) anses i vissa länder att naturtrogna fotografiska reproduktioner inte i sig uppnår verkshöjd, och därmed behöver endast konstnärens rättigheter beaktas. I andra länder är dock sådan exemplarframställning upphovsrättsligt skyddad. För fotografiska reproduktioner måste man följaktligen beakta upphovsrätten både i fotografiets och originalverkets ursprungsland (samt den amerikanska upphovsrätten).

När man laddar upp innehåll från ett land utanför USA tillämpas upphovsrätten i både det landet och den amerikanska upphovsrätten. Om innehållet hämtats från tredje part, såsom en annan webbplats, tillämpas upphovsrätten det land som uppladdningen sker ifrån, den amerikanska upphovsrätten samt upphovsrätten i det land där den andra webbplatsens servrar är placerade. Innehållets licens måste alltså vara giltigt i samtliga inblandade länder; eller om innehållet inte skyddas av upphovsrätten måste det vara i allmän ägo i samtliga inblandade länder för att tillåtas på Commons.

Om till exempel en person i Storbritannien laddar ner en bild från en webbserver i Frankrike och laddar upp den till Commons, vars servrar finns i USA, påverkas den handlingen av brittisk, fransk och amerikansk upphovsrätt. För att det ska vara tillåtet måste bilden vara publicerad under en licens som är giltig i Storbritannien, Frankrike och USA eller vara i allmän ägo i alla tre länder.

Commons tar inte emot ofritt innehåll med hänvisning till återgivningsrätten[edit]

Wikimedia Commons tar inte emot ofritt innehåll som endast kan användas inom ramen för återgivningsrätten, fair use eller liknande begränsade undantag från upphovsrättens skydd. Reglerna från sådana undantag varierar från land till land, och användning som medges av USA:s regler är oacceptabel i många andra länder med mer restriktiva regler.

Återgivningsrätten och liknande undantag är dessutom endast tillämpbara i vissa begränsade sammanhang. I ett sammanhang kan användningen av en mediafil falla inom ramen för sådana undantag, medan användning i ett annat sammanhang kan utgöra upphovsrättsintrång. Särskilt relevant här är att återgivningsrätten och fair use inte medger insamling och distribuering av innehåll i en mediadatabas såsom Commons. Det är således juridiskt omöjligt för Commons och dess användare att åberopa återgivningsrätten eller fair use.

Båda ovanstående problem innebär att användning av sådant innehåll är oförenligt med Commons grundläggande syfte att tillhandahålla innehåll som kan användas av vem som helst i vilket syfte som helst.

Ofritt innehåll som kan användas inom ramen för sådana undantag kan istället laddas upp lokalt till de projekt som tillåter det.

Härledda verk[edit]

Det här kollaget är ett exempel på ett härlett verk. Det kombinerar flera tidigare bilder som släppts under GFDL och andra kompatibla licenser för fritt innehåll.

Du kanske vill ha med en bild av Musse Pigg, men du kan naturligtvis inte bara skanna in en ofri bild. Varför inte ta en bild på en leksaksfigur och ladda upp den? Gör inte det. Anledningen till att man inte kan ladda upp fotografier av sådana figurer är att de anses vara härledda verk. Sådana verk kan inte publiceras utan den ursprungliga upphovsmannens tillåtelse.

Enligt amerikansk upphovsrättslagstiftning är ett härlett verk ett verk som är baserat på ett eller flera tidigare verk, såsom en översättning, musikarrangemang, dramatisering, fiktionalisering, filmversion, ljudinspelning, reproduktion, förkortning, sammanfattning eller annan form i vilken ett verk kan göras om, förändras eller anpassas. Ett verk som består av redaktionella granskningar, annoteringar, vidareutvecklingar eller andra förändringar som i sin helhet representerar ett arbete av verkshöjd är ett "härlett verk." Ett fotografi av ett upphovsrättsskyddat föremål är ett härlett verk enligt amerikansk lag. Den ursprungliga upphovsrättsinnehavaren har ensamrätt att framställa eller tillåta framställning av härledda verk baserade på dennes originalverk.

Härledda verk som framställts utan den ursprungliga upphovsrättsinnehavarens tillåtelse får inte laddas upp till Commons.

För mer information, se Commons:Derivative works.

Design som inte skyddas av upphovsrätt[edit]

De flesta kommersiella produkter skyddas av någon typ av immaterialrätt, men upphovsrättens skydd är bara ett sådant möjligt skydd. Det är viktigt att skilja mellan upphovsrätt, varumärkesskydd och patent. Wikimedia Commons fokuserar i allmänhet endast på upphovsrättsliga restriktioner, eftersom:

  • nästan vad som helst kan varumärkesskyddas, och det vore inte rimligt att förbjuda allt
  • varumärkesskydd och mönsterskydd berör industriell exemplartillverkning, men sådant skydd hindrar inte till exempel fotografisk avbildning

Commons godtar bilder av text som återges med ett vanligt typsnitt och bilder av geometriska former, även om dessa är varumärkesskyddade.[2] Sådana bilder märks med {{PD-textlogo}}. En design av konstnärlig natur kan dock skyddas av upphovsrätt.

Det är ofta mycket svårt att avgöra om en design omfattas av upphovsrätt eller inte, och radering av specifika bilder av detta slag föreslås ofta, med varierande resultat.

Typsnitt[edit]

Ett typsnitts utforming är inte föremål för upphovsrättsskydd i USA. I andra länder kan typsnitt vara skyddade (se Fonts på engelskspråkiga Wikipedia).

Checklist[edit]

Let's assume you took a picture with your camera, or you've scanned it from somewhere, or you've downloaded it off a web server - and want to upload it to Wikimedia Commons. How do you know what's OK and what's not? Here's a simple chart that helps you decide. In cases of doubt, read the further advice for your country first. If you still don't know for sure, ask on Commons:Help desk or Commons:Village pump in your local language.

See Commons:Image casebook for a more complete list.

✓OK[edit]

Own photos of:

  • Nature (forest, sky, etc.)
  • Animals (cats, dogs, etc.)
  • Insects (ants, beetles, etc.)
  • Produce (apples, tomatoes, etc.)
  • People who have given their consent
  • Yourself (as long as you don't use this as your private webspace)
  • Objects that are PD by age both in the United States and your jurisdiction:
    • Buildings built by an architect who died 70+ (preferably 100+) years ago
    • Works of art created by an artist who died 70+ (preferably 100+) years ago
    • Books by authors who died 70+ (preferably 100+) years ago
    • Newspapers and Magazines published by an author who died 70+ (preferably 100+) years ago

Own scans of:

  • Material where copyright has expired in your jurisdiction and the United States.

Material from web servers:

  • Material where copyright has expired in your jurisdiction, the United States and the jurisdiction of the web server.

Questionable, Symbol OK.svgmay or X mark.svg may not be OK[edit]

All kinds of copyrighted material:

Photographs, drawings, scans and other reproductions of:

  • Cars
  • Products of daily use (simple designs are OK)
  • Book covers (only very simple designs are OK)
  • Currency (depends on country law; please see Commons:Currency)
  • Buildings built by an architect who died less than 70 years ago (or is still alive) (see Freedom of panorama)
  • Permanently installed works of art in a public place, created by an artist who died less than 70 years ago (or is still alive) (see Freedom of panorama)
  • Interiors of private houses, homes, museums
  • Celebrities (see Personality rights)
  • Normal people who have not given their consent (see Personality rights)

X mark.svg not OK[edit]

  • Fair use images
  • Fan art that closely resembles copyrighted material
  • Photographs, drawings, scans and other reproductions of objects that are copyrighted by someone other than yourself like the following:
    • Works that are not permanently installed, created by an artist who died less than 70 years ago (or is still alive)
    • Action figures, statuettes, costumes and other copyrighted material (see Derivative Works)
    • Album, videogame, movie and other commercial products covers, posters, newspapers and magazines of less than 70 years (covers and interiors).
  • Sounds of things that are copyrighted by someone other than yourself like the following:
    • Copyrighted radio stations (programs and commercials)
    • Lyric songs created by an author who died less than 70 years ago (or is still alive)

International law[edit]

Berne Convention[edit]

Almost all countries in the world are party to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (see here for the text). Following this convention, countries enforce copyrights from other countries, according to certain rules. One consequence of these rules is that we should always care about the laws of the country of origin of the work.

Most important is article 7, which sets the term of duration of the protections granted by the Convention. The Convention sets a minimal term of 50 years after the life of the authors (subject to some exceptions). However, each country is free to set longer terms.

In any case, the term shall be governed by the legislation of the country where protection is claimed; however, unless the legislation of that country otherwise provides, the term shall not exceed the term fixed in the country of origin of the work.

Even though many countries have accepted the rule of the shorter term based on Article 7 of the Convention, please note that the United States Copyright Act has not honored such a rule. For example, 17 U.S.C. 104A(a)(1)(B) may restore copyright on a work published outside the USA for the remaining American copyright term even if its copyright may expire sooner in its source country. This may affect works that were still copyrighted on 1 January 1996 in their source countries. This mean that a work now in the public domain in a Commons user's home country might still be legally copyrighted in the USA. For further details, please visit w:en:Wikipedia:Non-US_copyrights#Dates_of_restoration_and_terms_of_protection for a list of American copyright restoration dates.

European copyright law[edit]

The European Union has issued directives harmonizing copyright rules in the European Union (see Copyright law of the European Union). Note, however, that directives, unlike European regulations, do not apply uniformly. They have to be transposed into national law by each country's legislature, and they often offer significant leeway in doing so. This is, for instance, the case for the legal exemptions of copyright (equivalent of "fair use"), which are allowed to differ within certain limits.

The most important, for our purposes, is the Directive on harmonizing the term of copyright protection (text). This directive sets the duration of copyright to 70 years following the death of the author (for multiple authors, of the last author; for collective, pseudonymous or anonymous works, following the date of publication).

However, this directive does not shorten already running extended copyright terms in countries that apply them.

The 2001 EUCD, article, 5 specifies exceptions to copyright. However, only one of these exceptions is mandatory (it concerns caching). The others are optional, meaning that for each exception, each country is free to choose whether it adopts it and how it restricts it. Thus, one should not assume that one exception true in one EU country applies in another. Notably, each country is free to chose how to copyright objects permanently located in public places and "simple" photographs.

Finally, there is considerable amounts of case law or jurisprudence on these issues. In some cases, they may create rights or restrictions that do not appear in the text of the law. Thus, one should always be wary in how the law is interpreted in the country of interest, as opposed to merely reading the legal texts.

Country-specific laws[edit]

Laws about copyright differ from country to country. Images uploaded to Commons, unless uploaded from the United States, involve the interaction of two or more copyright jurisdictions. Generally, the policy applied on Commons is to only allow images that can be used in all (or at least most) countries. The laws of individual countries differ especially in the following points:

  • The time for which a copyright applies. In most countries, copyright expires no later than 70 years after the death of the author.
  • Status of works of the government. In many (but not all) countries, documents published by the government for official use are in the public domain.
  • Material applicable for copyright. In some jurisdictions, pictures of artistic work like architecture, sculptures, clothing etc. can not be used freely without the consent of the creator of the original artwork.

The safest way to apply international copyright law is to consider the laws of all the relevant jurisdictions and then use the most restrictive combination of laws to determine whether something is copyrighted or not. The jurisdictions that might need to be considered are:

  • The place where the work was created;
  • The place where the work is being uploaded from;
  • The place that any web server the work has been downloaded from physically is;
  • The United States.

A work is only allowed on Commons if it is either public domain in all relevant jurisdictions or if there is a free licence which applies to the work in all relevant jurisdictions.

In the case of a painting published in France please do apply US-American copyright laws as those copyright laws apply to the servers of Commons. Also apply the copyright laws of the country you are in and the copyright laws of any web server you got the work off. In the case of a French painting uploaded to Commons from a French web server by someone living in the UK three copyright jurisdictions would apply: France, UK and US. US law would mean that if the painting had not been published before 1923 it would be in copyright. British law would mean that if the painting was by an artist who had been dead for less than 70 years it would be in copyright. French law would mean that if the painting was by an artist who died for France it would be in copyright for even longer than under British law. In this case the most restrictive combination of jurisdictions would be French and US. Only if the painting was legally in the public domain in both France and the United States could it be uploaded from a French web server to Commons.

UNESCO has a collection of national copyright laws that should be referred to when creating country-specific tags such as those below.

Relevant country-specific differences in the duration of copyright (from 70 years pma) and exceptions of the application of copyright are discussed below (countries are listed in alphabetical order):

Afghanistan[edit]

It appears that Afghanistan has no copyright laws at all. See this information from WIPO, and also w:Afghanistan and copyright issues.

Albania[edit]

According to Copyright law of Albania the duration of copyright is 70 years post mortem auctoris. Copyright terminates 70 years after publication for pseudonymous or anonymous work. The following are not copyrightable and thus in public domain:

  • the ideas, theories, concepts, discoveries and inventions in a creative work, apart from the way of acquiring, explanation or expression;
  • the official texts of a legal, administrative, legislative, political nature and their respective official translations;
  • the official symbols of the state, symbols of other public organizations and public authorities, such as: Coat of arms, seals, flags, emblems, medallions, medals;
  • Means of payment;
  • news and press information;
  • simple data and facts.
  • Folk expressions.

Algeria[edit]

Algerian law states that photos and films are protected for 50 years starting from the end of the publication year, after which they are in the public domain.

Andorra[edit]

The copyright law of Andorra states that the copyright term lasts for life extended for 70 years as from the first of January of the year following the death of the author. In a work of joint authorship, the term of 70 years shall be calculated from the death of the last surviving joint author. In a work of an author/s not identified individually (collective, anonymous or pseudonymous), the term is 70 years from the first time at the public disposal.

This is not applicable to any official text of legislative, administrative or judicial nature. However, the works of architecture are protected.

Andorra is party to the Berne Convention since Juny 2, 2004.

Arab States[edit]

Laws are found in both Arab Committee for Protecting Intellectual Property and Arab Law Group Organization

Armenia[edit]

According to the Copyright law of 1999 the duration of copyright is 50 years after the death of the author and 50 years after publication for anonymous work. Moral rights are perpetual.

The copyright in a work created on an employment assignment shall belong to the author of the work.

Armenia has freedom of panorama limited to de minimis use and non-commercial purposes.

Please check article 6. in Armenian; it is very unclear in English.

Argentina[edit]

See templates for details.

Australia[edit]

Government-produced works[edit]

According to [1], copyright of works with commonwealth, state, or territory-owned copyright expires 50 years from the date of creation (rounded up to the nearest year). Following that logic, all government-created works created before 1 January 1964 should be in the public domain.

Non-government works[edit]

Presently, the Australian Copyright Act 1968[2] should be consulted to determine whether the copyright of a work produced or published in Australia has expired. The Australian Copyright act 1968 was amended as of the 1st January 2005, prior to this the time limit was 50 years the amendment was not retrospective, copyrights that expired prior to this date were not revived [3]

  • Australian copyright is applied to works published first in Australia or whose original author is/was an Australian citizen, Australian resident or person under protection of the Australian government.[4]
  • For published works, the copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author.[5]
  • For previously unpublished works, the copyright cannot expire less than 70 years after the first publication of the work. [6]
  • For anonymous/pseudonymous works, the copyright expires 70 years after the first publication of the work.[7]

Following this logic:

  • All published works whose author deceased before 1 January 1944 are in the public domain.
  • All anonymous/pseudonymous works published before 1 January 1944 are in the public domain.
  • Unpublished works are not in the public domain.

Note:

  • Photographs taken prior to midnight on the 31st December 1954 are in the public domain[8], photographs taken on/after 1st January 1955 are not PD unless prescribe by the copyright owner.

Austria[edit]

Freedom of panorama[edit]

Objects permanently located in public that can be photographed from public (accessible) grounds, without devices such as a ladder, can be used by its photographer for any purpose, regardless of whether they display an artwork/building or not. This right is called Panoramafreiheit (freedom of panorama). However in some circumstances certain modifications (but not usage) of the image can be prohibited by the copyright owner of the object (artist or architect) if the copyright of that object has not expired. Generally an image taken in public space might not be used to produce an object similar to the original. (§54. (1) [9])

§54. (1) 5. : Werke der Baukunst nach einem ausgeführten Bau oder andere Werke der bildenden Künste nach Werkstücken, die dazu angefertigt wurden, sich bleibend an einem öffentlichen Ort zu befinden, zu vervielfältigen, zu verbreiten, durch optische Einrichtungen öffentlich vorzuführen und durch Rundfunk zu senden und der Öffentlichkeit zur Verfügung zu stellen; ausgenommen sind das Nachbauen von Werken der Baukunst, die Vervielfältigung eines Werkes der Malkunst oder der graphischen Künste zur bleibenden Anbringung an einem Orte der genannten Art sowie die Vervielfältigung von Werken der Plastik durch die Plastik.

Official works[edit]

By Austrian law, documents are in the public domain (gemeinfrei) if they have been published as part of a law or official decree or edict, or if they have been released as an official announcement or for public information. The relevant law is paragraph 7 of the UrhG.

Azerbaijan[edit]

According to the Copyright law of 1996 the duration of copyright is 50 years post mortem auctoris. The duration of copyright for anonymous work is 50 years after publication unless the author is identified. Post-humously work is protected 50 years after death if the work is published within 30 years after death.

According to article 8 copyright registration or explicit mention of copyright may be necessary. The English translation is not clear on this point.

The following are not subjects of copyright:

  • official documents (laws, court decisions, other texts of legislative, administrative or judicial character) and their official translations;
  • State emblems and official signs (flags, armorial bearings, decorations, monetary signs and other State symbols and official signs);
  • works of folklore;
  • communications concerning events and facts that have informational character.

The reproduction, broadcasting or communication to the public by cable of architectural works, photographic works and works of fine art permanently located in a public place shall be permissible without the author's consent and without payment of remuneration, except where the presentation of the work constitutes the main feature of the said reproduction, broadcast or communication to the public by cable, if it is used for commercial purposes.

Belarus[edit]

The copyright law of Belarus states that the copyright term lasts for life, then extended for the next 50 years after the death of the author. In the case of more than one author, it will be 50 years p.m.a. after the death of the last author.

Belgium[edit]

According to the Copyright law of 1994 the duration of copyright is 70 years post mortem auctoris. For anonymous work the duration of copyright is 70 years after publication if the author is not identified.

Brazil[edit]

According to Brazilian Copyright law of 1998 (in Portuguese) translation:

Chapter III -The Economic Rights of the Authors and Term Thereof

  • Art. 28. The author has the exclusive right to use his literary, artistic or scientific work, to derive benefit from it and to dispose of it.
  • Art. 41. The author's economic rights shall be protected for a period of 70 years as from the first of January of the year following his death, subject to observance of the order of succession under civil law.
  • Art. 42. Where a literary, artistic or scientific work of joint authorship is indivisible, the term of protection provided for in the foregoing Article shall be calculated from the death of the last surviving joint author.
  • Art. 43. The term of protection of economic rights in anonymous or pseudonymous works shall be 70 years counted from the first of January of the year following that of the first publication.

Sole Paragraph. The provisions of Articles 41 and its sole paragraph shall be applicable where the author makes his identity known before the expiry of the period referred to in the introduction to this Article.

  • Art. 44. The economic rights in audiovisual and photographic works shall be protected for a period of 70 years from the first of January of the year following that of their disclosure.
  • Art. 45. In addition to the works in respect of which the protection of the economic rights has expired, the following shall pass into the public domain:
    • I. the works of authors deceased without heir;
    • II. the works of unknown authors, subject to the legal protection of ethnic and traditional lore.

Chapter V - Term of Protection for Neighboring Rights

  • Art. 96. The term of protection of neighboring rights shall be 70 years from the first of January of the year following fixation for phonograms, transmission for the broadcasts of broadcasting organization, and public performance in other cases.

Freedom of panorama[edit]

  • Art. 48. Works permanently located in public places may be freely represented by painting, drawing, photography and audiovisual processes.

Canada[edit]

All photographs taken before 1 January, 1949 are in the public domain.

For works from after that time, or non-photographs, the Copyright Act states a copyright subsists for the life of the author plus 50 years following the end of the calendar year of death (section 6). If the work is anonymous or pseudonymous then the copyright lasts either 50 years following publication or 75 years after the making of the work, whichever is earlier (section 6.1), provided the authorship does not become known in that timeframe.

See the Canadian Public Domain Flowchart to determine if a work is in the public domain.

China[edit]

People's Republic of China[edit]

According to the Copyright Law of the People's Republic of China [10] in effect in Mainland China:

  • Article 5: The law does not apply to those specified in Template:PD-PRC-exempt.
  • Article 20: The rights of authorship, alteration and integrity of an author shall be unlimited in time. These are moral rights.
  • Article 21:
    • A copyright subsists for the life of the author plus 50 years following the end of the calendar year of death.
    • A legal entity or other organization or in respect of a work created in the course of employment enjoys the copyright for 50 years since the first publication.
    • A cinematographic work, a work created by virtue of an analogous method of film production or a photographic work is copyrighted for 50 years since the first publication.
    • All of the preceding terms expire on December 31 of the last year.
  • Article 59 has restored copyright. The same thing has also been written in Article 55 of the Copyright Law of the People's Republic of China dated 1990 (zh:中华人民共和国著作权法/1990年).[11] One should not simply assume that works made in China before the 1990 laws are in the public domain.

According to the Chinese Civil Law Article 100 photos of regular people may not be published without their consent, if the person can be identified. The use of the image for profit (commercially) without his consent shall be prohibited.

Hong Kong[edit]

According to Chapter 528 Copyright Ordinance, in Section 17 Duration of copyright in literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works, in the law of Hong Kong, a work's copyright expires 50 years after the last death of known authors, or the work's first publication for unknown authorship, or the year it made when the work is never made public and with unknown authorship. The above-mentioned ordinance does not apply to the work of Hong Kong Government, Legislative Council and certain international organizations. Their copyrights are under separate ordinances. [12]

Macau[edit]

According to the Copyright Law (Decree-Law n.o 43/99/M):

  • Article 6: Official works are not protected. See also Template:PD-MacaoGov.
  • Article 21: Generally, copyright shall lapse 50 years after the death of the creator of the work, even in the case of works disclosed or published posthumously, to expire at the end of the last year.
  • Article 51: Non-Macanese works are copyrightable in Macau for the Macanese copyright duration or the home country or area, whichever is less, i.e. the rule of the shorter term applies in Macau.
  • Article 106: The copyright in an audiovisual work shall lapse 50 years after its disclosure.
  • Article 148: The copyright in works of applied art shall lapse 25 years after the completion of the work.
  • Article 155: The copyright in photographic works shall lapse 25 years after their completion, even if they have never been disclosed or published.
  • Article 182: The rights of performers shall lapse 50 years after the performance.
  • Article 188: The rights of producers of phonograms and videograms shall lapse 50 years after fixation.
  • Article 192: The rights of broadcasting organizations shall lapse 20 years after the broadcast.

Republic of China[edit]

According to the Copyright Act of the Republic of China in effect in Taiwan Area:

  • Article 9: Works specified in Template:PD-ROC-exempt shall not be the subject matter of copyright.
  • Article 30:
    • Generally, economic rights endure for the life of the author and 50 years after the author's death.
    • Where a work is first publicly released between the 40th and 50th years after the author's death, the economic rights shall endure for a term of 10 years beginning from the time of the first public release.
  • Article 31: Economic rights in a joint work subsist for 50 years after the death of the last surviving author.
  • Article 32
    • Economic rights in a pseudonymous work or an anonymous work endure for 50 years from the time of public release; provided, the economic rights shall be extinguished where it can be proven that the author has been deceased for over 50 years.
    • The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not apply when the pseudonym of the author is well known to the public.
  • Article 33: Economic rights in works authored by a juristic person endure for 50 years after the public release of the work; provided, if the work is not publicly released within 50 years from the completion of the creation, the economic rights shall subsist for 50 years after completion of the creation.
  • Article 34:
    • Economic rights for photographic works, audiovisual works, sound recordings, and performances endure for 50 years after the public release of the work.
    • The proviso of the preceding article shall apply mutatis mutandis to the preceding paragraph.
  • Article 35: All terms of duration specified in Articles 30 through 34 terminate as of the last day of the last year of the term.

Czech Republic[edit]

According to the Czech Copyright Law [13], §3 a) there is no copyright on official works, such as legal acts, public documents including those in preparation, documents published by the House of Representatives and Senate, state symbols (flags, coats of arms, anthems) of countries and administrative subdivisions, municipal chronicles and any other works whose exclusion from copyright protection is in public interest.

Freedom of panorama: Works permanently displayed in public area (square, street, park, public road or another public space) can be freely recorded through drawing, painting, photograph or movie, but not through three-dimensional models. Author of the derivative work should only mention the author and name of the original work, if possible (§33).

In line with EU Copyright Directive, authors are entitled to royalties for usage of their works during their lifetime and 70 years after their death (§27). Performing artists (e.g. actors, musicians, dancers) are entitled to royalties for 50 years after publishing of their performance (§73). (All terms are computed from January 1 of the year following the respective event.)

Denmark[edit]

According to Danish law, Consolidated Act on Copyright 2003, the copyright on "photographic images" expire 50 years after the image's creation. However, for "photographic works" the copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author. The definition of a photographic work, as opposed to image is not precisely defined. In general a work is considered to have to display some form of originality or other special artistic properties. Simple snap-shots do not qualify as works. Interpretation is highly subjective. There is some debate as to whether all works by a professional photographer constitute works as opposed to simple images.

Egypt[edit]

Egyptian Law states that photos paintings and drawing are protected for 25 years starting from the publication date, after which they are in public domain.

Estonia[edit]

According to the Republic of Estonia Copyright law Public sources: Copyright does not apply to works of folklore, legislation and administrative documents, court decisions and official translations thereof; official symbols of the state and insignia of organisations. Copyright does not apply to reproduction of work by libraries, archives or museums.

It is permitted, without the authorization of the author and without payment of remuneration, to reproduce works of architecture, works of visual art, works of applied art or photographic works which are permanently located in places open to the public by any means except for mechanical contact copying, and to communicate such reproductions of works to the public except if the work is the main subject of the reproduction and it is intended to be used for direct commercial purposes. If the work specified carries the name of its author, it shall be indicated in communicating the reproduction to the public.

Finland[edit]

According to Finnish Copyright law of 2005 copyright expires for photographs not considered to be "works of art" fifty years after the photograph was taken. Photographs considered to be "works of art" are protected normally for 70 years after the death of the works creator. The difference between a photograph and photographic work of art is not precisely defined. As an example, the (legally not binding) opinion of the Finnish Copyright Council [14] is that this photograph of Paavo Nurmi "-- is despite its historical importance a regular photo of current events. The photograph does not demonstrate original and personal contribution from the photographer and so it can't be considered to be -- a photographic work."

The copyright law of 1991 extended the copyright time from 25 years (according to the 1961 copyright law) to 50 years. However, material already released to public domain according to the 1961 law remain in public domain and therefore all photographs (but not photographic works of art) released before 1966 are in the public domain.

The textual representations of Finnish coat of arms of municipalities, regions and provinces are considered to be governmental decisions and therefore they are not protected by copyright. According to the opinions of the Finnish Copyright Council 1997:11 and 1998:5 also the graphical representation is thought not to meet the requirements for a original work of art and therefore is not protected by copyright. This is also thought to be true for the coat of arms of historical provinces and other historical coats of arms.

Photos of works of art exhibited in public spaces can only be used for non-commercial purposes, unless it is clear that the work is not the main subject in the photo (freedom of panorama). There are no restrictions on photos of general buildings but a single home or yard may not be photographed.

People[edit]

[15]

Photos of people who are of public interest (famous politician, artist, sportsman) and who are carrying out their public duties or work may be published without consent.

Photos of regular people in public places[16] may not be published without their consent unless the person is clearly not the main subject of the image and the picture does not cause damage, suffering or despisal to the person in the picture.

However, if the person can be identified, the image may never be used in advertisement (commercially) without consent.

France[edit]

The relevant laws are in the first book of the Code of Intellectual Property, or CPI (English version). The code includes dispositions transposed from the 1993 European directive on Copyright. France also enforces the Berne Convention.

The normal duration of copyright is 70 years following the end of the year of death of the author (or the death of the last author for multiple authors); if the work is anonymous, pseudonymous or collective, it is 70 years following the end of the year of publication of the work (unless the authors named themselves). See below for important extensions to copyright.

Images from public sites[edit]

Note that French government services often use professional photographers who are not government employees to make official photographs. These photographers then typically sell an usage right to the government. In such circumstances, the government does not own the copyright to the photograph, and thus could not give us a license to use it even if it wanted to.

The rules for protection of works by the government are somewhat fuzzy, and one should assume by default that anything from a government entity is copyrighted. One should refer to:

Laws, decrees, court decisions and other similar government texts (but not the translations or commentaries thereof), possibly found on Légifrance, are in the public domain. This seems acknowledged by Légifrance's copyright terms.

Unless you really know what you're doing, please abstain from copying photos from French government sites to Commons. Thanks.

Wartime copyright extensions[edit]

French law grants extensions to copyright because of the World Wars (see CPI L123-8 and following). The extensions are:

  • 6 years and 152 days for World War I
  • 8 years and 120 days for World War II
  • 30 years for people who died for France (only in World War II?); this includes, for instance, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and Jehan Alain.

Several extensions can be added together.

The European directive on copyright does not necessarily suppress these extensions:

Article 10 - Where a term of protection, which is longer than the corresponding term provided for by this Directive, is already running in a Member State on the date referred to in Article 13 (1), this Directive shall not have the effect of shortening that term of protection in that Member State.

According to the French Ministry of Culture, the legal status of these extensions, adopted when copyright was 50 years after death, was unclear in the context of the new 70-year law; the Ministry called for erring on the side of caution and assuming they are valid. [17]

Note that one should not assume that copyright holders do not try to enforce these extensions. In 2005, right holders demanded payment for a movie where a character whistled The Internationale, whose author died in 1932. (See also Template:PD-Internationale for further information.) On the other hand, the Paris Appeal Court ruled against applying the extensions in 2004 [18], but on 12 October 2005, another section of the same court applied the extension so that the works of a painter who died in 1931 will not enter the public domain before late 2016 [19].

On February 27, 2007, the Court of Cassation, supreme jurisdiction, first civil chamber, ruled in the Hazan case (arrêt n° 280 du 27 février 2007) that articles L123-8 and L123-9, extending the duration of protection to compensate for wartimes, were not applicable to works for which an extended protection period (beyond 70 years) had not started to elapse on July 1, 1995.[20][21]

Wikimédia France is investigating the case.

Works of arts, including architecture, exhibited in public spaces[edit]

The architect of a notable building owns copyright over the representations of that building, including postcards and photographs. For instance, the architect of the pyramid in the courtyard of the Louvre Museum may claim copyright over images of the pyramid. This, for instance, extends to the designer of lighting systems; for instance, the company operating the Eiffel Tower claims copyright of images of the tower when lighted at night.

However, ruling #567 of March 15, 2005 of the Court of Cassation denied the right of producers of works of arts installed in a public plaza over photographs of the whole plaza:

Because the Court has noticed that, as it was shown in the incriminated images, the works of Mr X... and Z... blended into the architectural ensemble of the Terreaux plaza, of which it was a mere element, the appeals court correctly deduced that this presentation of the litigious work was accessory to the topic depicted, which was the representation of the plaza, so that the image did not constitute a communication of the litigious work to the public

The court draws a distinction between depictions of a work of art, and depictions of whole settings of which the work of art is a mere part, and denies the right of the artist over such images.

While architects may have rights to works derived from their work of art, this is not the case of the owners of works of art or buildings, in general. The summary of the conclusions of a May 7, 2004 ruling by the Court of Cassation was:

The owner of a thing does not have an exclusive right over the image of this thing; he or she can however oppose the usage of this image by a third party if this usage results in an abnormal disturbance to him or her."

In this decision, the court excluded that the owner of a hotel, who had made extensive repairs and enhancements to the buildings at high costs, could claim exclusive rights to the image of that hotel: merely demonstrating that the costs supported did not demonstrate that the publishing of images was an abnormal disturbance.

The Court already ruled on June 5, 2003, that the right of property comprised absolutely no right to the image of this property. However, they also upheld the right to privacy of the homeowners: in this case, not only a photograph of a house was published, but also its exact location and the name of the owners. Earlier rulings (May 2, 2001) similarly rejected requests based on ownership without a justification of an abnormal disturbance.

Germany[edit]

Freedom of panorama[edit]

Objects permanently located in public that can be photographed from public (accessible) grounds, without devices such as a ladder, can be used by its photographer for any purpose, regardless of whether they display an artwork/building or not. This right is called Panoramafreiheit (freedom of panorama). However in some circumstances certain modifications (but not usage) of the image can be prohibited by the copyright owner of the object (artist or architect) if the copyright of that object has not expired. A notable exception from freedom of panorama was the wrapped German Reichstag by the artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude since it was from the beginning not a permanent installation.

There are some cases (e.g. images of sculptures by living artists displayed in public) in which there is a discussion on whether they are acceptable on the commons in the future. (See discussion). When in doubt, German Wikipedia might be a better choice for upload.

Official works[edit]

By German law, documents are in the public domain (gemeinfrei) if they have been published as part of a law or official decree or edict, or if they have been released as an official announcement or for public information. The relevant law is section 5 of the UrhG. The first and most important sentence states:

Gesetze, Verordnungen, amtliche Erlasse und Bekanntmachungen sowie Entscheidungen und amtlich verfaßte Leitsätze zu Entscheidungen genießen keinen urheberrechtlichen Schutz.

For more information about German copyright laws, see the meta-page Wikipedia:Bildrechte on the German Wikipedia.

India[edit]

According to Indian copyright law, all pictures published in India more than 60 years ago are in the public domain. [22] Official website

Indonesia[edit]

Translated from Indonesian Copyright Act No. 19, 2002 ([23] in Indonesian):

Chapter II, Section 5, about the limitation of copyright.

Article 14: Not viewed as violations of copyright:

  • Publication and/or distribution of the country's coat of arms or national anthem if there is no modification from the original.
  • Publication and/or distribution of any work that has been published and/or distributed by or in the name of the Government, except if the copyright of the object is stated as protected, either in law or in writing on the work, at the time the work was published and/or distributed.
  • Quotations of news reports, in full or in part, from any news agency, broadcasting agency, newspaper or any other similar source, provided the source is cited in full.

Chapter III, about copyright duration.

Article 29

  • Copyright of books, pamphlets, and all written works; plays and musicals, dance and choreography; all forms of three-dimensional art such as paintings and sculpture; batik; songs and music with or without lyrics; architecture; speeches, lectures, speeches and similar works; display materials; maps and translations interpretations, adaptations and anthologies lasts for the life of the author and for 50 (fifty) years after the author dies.

Article 30

  • Copyright of software, cinematography, photography, databases and engineering products lasts for 50 years after the initial publication of the work.

Iran[edit]

According to the Iranian "Law for Supporting Authors, Composers, and Artists" (قانون حمایت حقوق مؤلفان و مصنفان و هنرمندان), passed on 11 Dey 1348 (January 1, 1970) and published in the official newspaper number 7288 on 21 Bahman 1348 (February 1, 1970), for many images, including paintings, the work is in the public domain if all of its authors have died for at least 30 Iranian years (may be different from 30 Gregorian years by a few days).

As special exceptions, if the work is cinematic or photographic or if the (economic) rights of a work have been transferred to a legal person, the work will become public domain after 30 Iranian years from its publication or offering.

Iraq[edit]

Iraqi Law states that photos are protected for 5 years, starting from the publication date, after which they are in public domain.

Israel[edit]

According to the new Israel's copyright law, works are protected until 70 years after their author's death. Pictures are protected until 70 years after their photographer's death, unless the pictures were taken before 2008 - in which case the pictures are protected for 50 years from the day the picture was taken, unless the pictures were taken by a public authority (the government) in which case the pictures are protected for 50 years from the day of publication. Freedom of Panorama applies: Taking and publishing photos of works of art—if these are permanently installed in a public place – and of architectural works is allowed.

Italy[edit]

In compliance to Italian copyright law term of copyright expires according to law of 22 April 1941 n. 633, revised by the law of 22 May 2004, n. 128 article 87 and article 92, all non artistic photographs enter the public domain after 20 years counted from the beginning of the following calendar year (i.e. as of 2014, prior to the 1st of January, 1994) after they were first published, this rule is valid also for Italian film's screenshot. Artistic photographs enter in the public domain after 70 years.

The theory that the 70 year rule applies to works of the Italian government is unproven and disputed. See Template talk:PD-ItalyGov.

Jamaica[edit]

According to the copyright act of Jamaica copyright expires:

  • 50 years after the death of the author
  • 50 years after publication if the author could not be determined.

Japan[edit]

According to the Japanese Copyright Law, the copyright subsists for the life of the author plus 50 years (article 51). If the work is anonymous or pseudonymous, the copyright lasts for 50 years after the publication or the death of the author, whichever is the earlier (article 52). The copyrights of the works in names of organizations expire in 50 years after the publication, or in 50 years after the creation if the works are not published within 50 years after the creation (article 53). Since June 18, 2003 cinematographic works are exceptionally protected for 70 years, instead of 50 years, after the publication, or in 70 years after the creation if the films are not published within 70 years of the creation (article 54).

In July 2006, a Japanese court ruled that all movies produced in Japan prior to 1953 were to be made available into the public domain. See template {{PD-Japan-film}} for details. (Websites [24] and [25] presents another information. Please verify it on official Japanese websites in official Japanese documents.)

Works correspond to the following are not eligible for copyrights (article 13).

  • The constitution, and other laws and ordinances.
  • Announcements and notifications by the organizations of the national or local governments.
  • Judicial decisions of the law courts.

Jordan[edit]

Jordanian Law states that photos and two dimensional artistic works are protected for 25 years starting from the end of the publication year, after which they are in public domain.

Kenya[edit]

Copyright protection exists during the life of the author and 50 years after his or her death for works other than photographs or 50 years after the first publication for photographs. [26]

Kuwait[edit]

Kuwaiti Law states that photos, films and two dimensional artistic works are protected for 50 years starting from the end of the publication year, after which they are in public domain.

Lebanon[edit]

Lebanese copyright law from 1999 states that works are protected for 50 years after the author's death (#49) and 50 years after publication for anonymous work (#52). Moral rights are perpetual.

Malaysia[edit]

According to the Copyright act of 1987 copyright subsists until 50 years after the death of the author. Copyright for unpublished work subsists for 50 years after first publication. For anonymous or pseudonymous work copyright subsists for 50 years after publication unless the author is made known. According to article 11 works by the Government, Governmental Organizations and International organizations are subject to copyright until 50 years after publication (article 23).

Mexico[edit]

According to the Mexican law (See Art. 29: Ley federal del derecho de autor, critical commentary, in Spanish) a copyright subsists for the life of the author plus 100 years following the end of the calendar year of death of the youngest author or the publication date in case of the federal, state or municipal governments. There is one exception: works that were already in the public domain before July 23, 2003. Generally speaking, that means works created by someone who had died before July 23, 1928 (75 years before).

For a brief guide to Mexican copyright law see User:Drini/Mexican copyright law. Also note works created by the Mexican government do not default to PD, they being protected 100 years after publishing (art. 29)

Morocco[edit]

Moroccan Law states that photos and films are Protected for 50 years starting from the end of the publication year, after which they are in public domain.

Netherlands[edit]

Dutch laws and legal judgments are completely free of copyright (Article 11 of Dutch copyright law of 1912).

In principle all works communicated to the public by or on behalf of the public authorities (government) are not copyright protected in the Netherlands, unless the copyright has been reserved explicitly, either in a general manner by law, decree or ordinance, or in a specific case by a notice on the work itself or at the communication to the public. This is regulated in Article 15b of the Copyright Act of 1912. This implies that all programmes of the Netherlands Public Broadcasting service (they are public authorities just like the Silicose Oud-mijnwerkers foundation, ABRS 30 November 1995, JB 1995/337) are not copyright protected.

Works of individual authors enjoy copyright protection until 70 years after the 1st January following the author's death. The duration of the copyright belonging jointly to two or more persons in their capacity as co-authors of a work shall be calculated from 1 January of the year following the year of the death of the last surviving co-author. The copyright in a work of which the author has not been indicated or has not been indicated in such a way that his identity is beyond doubt shall, or a public institution, association, foundation or company is deemed the author, expires 70 years after 1 January of the year following that in which the work was first lawfully communicated to the public.

New Zealand[edit]

Works are protected for life plus 50 years under the Copyright Act of 1994.

Norway[edit]

Works are protected 70 years after author's death, or 70 years after publication if the author is unknown/anonymous. There is one exception: Photos that are not considered artistic works (i.e. snapshots) are protected until no less than 15 years after the photographer's death and no less than 50 years after publication.

Photos of works of art exhibited in public spaces can only be used for non-commercial purposes, unless it is clear that the work is not the main subject in the photo (freedom of panorama). There are no restrictions on photos of buildings.

Photos of people may not be published without their consent unless either a) the image illustrates a current event of interest the general public, or b) the person is clearly not the main subject of the image (i.e. passers-by may be included unless they fill an unreasonable amount of the image) or c) the image depicts a gathering, an outdoor parade or something which is of interest to the general public. This is part of the Copyright Act, and thus might affect the right to publish an image under a free license, as the person depicted retains the right to refuse use of the image.

There are no such thing as public domain, yet there are a similar notion of works that fall in the free. Exclusive rights will then cease to apply but you still have to attribute the creator and any use should give to creator and work proper "respect". That means the works are in some sort of semi-nonderivative state. You can change it but if any of the heirs object it will be unlawful to use.

Texts of laws and decisions, reports and statements made and published by state or local authorities are not protected by copyright, but images used in such publications may be protected unless they were made specifically for the publication.

Recordings of performances are copy-protected for 50 years[27], after which time they may be used freely (the material of the performance may still be bound by copyright, however).

Norwegian currency is protected by copyright (see Commons:Currency#Norway).

Pakistan[edit]

According to Pakistani copyright laws, all photographs enter the public domain fifty years after they were created, and all non-photographic works enter the public domain fifty years after the death of the creator.

Paraguay[edit]

Paraguay passed a new copyright law in 1998. This law replaced any earlier legislation and was fully retroactive (see artcile 181). Works are copyrighted in Paraguay until 70 years after the death of the last surviving author (70 years p.m.a.; article 47), or for 70 years since the disclosure of an anonymous work. If the author of an anonymous work becomes known during these 70 years, 70 years p.m.a. applies (article 48). Copyright on collections, computer programs, audiovisual works, and broadcasts last for 70 years since the publication or completion of the work, but individual contributions are copyrighted to 70 years p.m.a. (article 49). Moral rights (attribution, integrity of the work) do not expire, and Paraguay has a domaine publique payant (i.e., for uses of public domain works, a fee must be paid top the state; see article 55).

Paraguay makes a distinction between photographic works and simple photographs. Any photograph that is not a work is copyrighted until 50 years since its creation (article 135).

Paraguay does have the "freedom of panorama", i.e., works permanently placed at public places (open-air only) may be freely reproduced by two-dimensional means such as photography, or filming (articles 39(4) and 41(4)).

The term for the neighbouring rights on performances, phonograms, and broadcasts is 50 years since the first performance, publication of the recording, or first broadcast.

The Philippines[edit]

Copyrighted photographs are protected for 50 years after publication. Works by the government of the Philippines are not protected by copyright. However, prior approval of the government agency or office wherein the work was created is necessary for exploitation of such works for profit. (Republic Act 8293)

Poland[edit]

According to the Art.3 of copyright law of March 29, 1926 (valid until 1952) and Art. 2 of copyright law of July 10, 1952 of the People's Republic of Poland, all photographs by Polish photographers (or published for the first time in Poland or simultaneously in Poland and abroad) printed without a clear copyright notice before the law was changed on May 23, 1994 are public domain. Status of those photographs did not change after Polish Copyright Law of February 4, 1994 was enacted. (See: Template:PD-Polish)

According to the Polish Copyright Law of February 4, 1994 (Article 4, case 2) "governmental symbols, documents, materials and signs are not subject to copyrights". However in some instances the use of this image in Poland might be regulated by other laws. It is being debated if postage stamps fall into this category. (See: Template:PD-Polishsymbol)

According to the Art.21 of copyright law of March 29, 1926 (valid until 1952) photographs loose copyright protection ten years after picture was taken. Series of scientific or artistic pictures loose copyright protection after 50 years. According to Art. 27 of copyright law of July 10, 1952 (valid until May 23, 1994) photographs and series of photographs lose copyright protection ten years after publication date. However, retroactive Polish Copyright Law of February 4, 1994 Art. 124, put all those images back under copyright protection, for 70 years since the death of the author.

The copyright act from February 4, 1994 in article 33 point 1 allows to propagate works that are permanently exhibited on the publicly accessible roads, streets, squares or gardens provided that the propagation is not for the same use. The name of the creator and source should be provided if it is possible by article 34. This use is royalty free, provided that it does not harm the legitimate interests of the creator by article 34.

Russia and former Soviet Union[edit]

Copyrights of works created in Russia was based on the Russian copyright law of 1993 and its amendments of 1995 and 2004 (Федеральный закон от 9.07.1993 № 5351-1). Since January 1, 2008, intellectual property rights are regulated by Russian law 230-FL of 2006: Part IV of the Civil Code, together with the Russian law 231-FL of 2006: Implementation act for Part IV of the Civil Code. This new law replaced all previous IP laws in Russia.

The same law applies to the works from the former Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic of the Soviet Union, since Russia is recognized as one of the twelve (12) legal successors of the USSR (as a federation of republics). Copyrights of works originating from other former Soviet republics may be claimed by the corresponding w:post-Soviet states too.

See Commons:Copyright tags#Russia and former Soviet Union for specific copyright tags.

See also:{{PD-Ukraine}}, as one of specific post-Soviet tags.

Note: There was a discussion whether pre-1973 works from the Soviet Union are copyright-free, originating in the period of uncertainty after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. It was concluded that this theory is incorrect; see discussions in en:Template talk:PD-USSR and Template talk:PD-Soviet.

Saudi Arabia[edit]

Saudi Arabian Law states that the "protection period for applied art (handcrafted or manufactured) and photographs shall be twenty five years of the date of publication." Films, sound and artistic works are protected for 50 years starting from the publication date, after which they are in the public domain.

Slovakia[edit]

According to section 27 of the Slovak copyright law, Slovakia has freedom of panorama. Works permanently located at public places may be freely reproduced by drawing, painting, graphics, relief picture or relief model, or by photography or film, and such reproductions may be freely published and sold without the consent of the original author.

South Africa[edit]

The Copyright Act of 1978 is the current law of South Africa governing copyrights. S.3(2)(a) specifies that cinematograph films, photographs, and sound recording are copyrighted for 50 years after their first publication. (Most other works are copyrighted for 50 years after the death of the author.)

Spain[edit]

In Spain the "copyright" is known as "intellectual property". Generally, according to Spanish law, Royal Act 1/1996, on April 12, about Intellectual Property (Spanish PDF), the copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author. If the "intellectual property" of the work isn't owned by anybody, or it is a collective work where individual authors are not identifiable, this work would be on public domain after 70 years since the date of publication. However, works of authors who died before December 7, 1987 are dealt with by the 1879 law, which sets a protection time of 80 years post mortem auctoris.[28]

70-year limits are calculated from January 1, the following year to the date of the death or publication.

Exceptions to this (that may be useful in commons) are:

  • The pieces of work situated permanently in parks, streets, squares and other public ways can be reproduced, distributed and communicated freely by using paintings, drawings, photographies and audiovisual procedures.
  • Legal or ruling dispositions and their correspondent projects, resolutions of jurisdictional organs and acts, agreements, deliberations and reports of public organizations, and so official translations of all these texts are not subjected to "intellectual property".

Sudan[edit]

Sudanese Law states that photos and films are protected for 25 years starting from the publication date, after which they are in public domain.

Sweden[edit]

Photographs published after 1994 are protected for 70 years after the author's death if they have an artistic or scientific value.[3] Photos that lack artistic value are only protected for 50 years after creation. If the photograph was published before 1994, transitional regulations apply—see {{PD-Sweden}}.

Works of art permanently exhibited in public spaces can be used without consideration to the creator of the work of art, eg. freedom of panorama, and there are no restrictions on photos of buildings. (Upphovsrättslagen 24 §)

Governmental laws and ordinances, decisions and statements published by Swedish authorities, and official translations thereof, are not copyright protected. (Upphovsrättslagen 9 §)

An English translation of the Copyright Act is available at sweden.gov.se.

Switzerland[edit]

In Switzerland, copyright is covered in the Copyright Act (Urheberrechtsgesetz, URG, SR 231.1. See also w:Swiss copyright law). Generally, copyright lasts for 70 years after the death of the (last) author. If authorship is unknown, copyright lasts for 70 years after the first publication. However, the increase of the protection term from 50 to 70 years occurred in 1993; since the increase was not retroactive, all works made by authors deceased before 1 January 1943 are in the public domain in Switzerland.

Works not covered by copyright include:

  • laws, ordinances, international treaties and other official acts;
  • currency;
  • decisions, protocols and reports by public authorities;
  • patents and patent applications.

(See also template {{PD-Switzerland-official}} and {{Swiss Government Portrait}})

To be eligible for copyright in the first place, a work must be of individual character, i.e. be an individual expression of thought (Art. 2 par. 1 URG). Many photographs are therefore not protected (see {{PD-Switzerland-photo}} for details).

Syria[edit]

Syrian Law states that photos and two dimensional artistic works are protected for 10 years starting from the production date, after which they are in public domain.

Taiwan[edit]

See #Republic of China above.

Tajikistan[edit]

See: here, copied from [29].

Copyright generally lasts for 50 years after the death of the author. Works not covered by copyright are covered in Article 7.

  1. official documents (laws, court decisions, other texts of legislative, administrative or judicial character) and official translations thereof;
  2. state emblems and official signs (flags, armorial bearings, decorations, monetary signs and other State symbols and official signs);
  3. communications concerning events and facts that have informational character;
  4. works of folklore.

Anything that falls under this description can use {{PD-Tajikistan}}.

United Kingdom[edit]

As with the rest of the European Union the basic copyright term in the United Kingdom is life of the author plus 70 years. There are a number of variations on this however. Works in the United Kingdom fall into two categories for the purposes of copyright duration: government works and non-government works. The former are covered by Crown copyright and Parliamentary copyright and their special duration rules and the latter by ordinary copyright duration rules.

Crown copyright[edit]

Crown copyright works have a basic term of protection of 50 years from date of commercial publication. For Crown works created before the entry into force of the Copyright Act 1956 on 30 June 1957 other rules apply. Crown copyright photographs created prior to 30 June 1957 have a copyright term of 50 years from creation. Published Crown copyright engravings created prior to 30 June 1957 have a copyright term of 50 years from commercial publication. Unpublished Crown copyright engravings of the period come out of copyright at the end of 2039. Crown artistic works other than engravings and photographs created prior to 30 June 1957 have a copyright term of 50 years from creation.

Further special rules apply to Crown artistic works created between 30 June 1957 and the entry into force of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 on 1 August 1989. Published engravings created in this period are still out of copyright 50 years after commercial publication. Unpublished engravings created in this period come out of copyright at the end of 2039 as before. Published photographs are out of copyright 50 years after publication. Unpublished photographs come out of copyright at the end of 2039. Other artistic works come out of copyright 50 years after creation.

For a summary of these times see the flowchart at [30].

Crown copyright sound recordings are much more simple. Copyright expires 50 years after creation unless the work is commercially published during that period when copyright expires 50 years after first publication.

Parliamentary copyright[edit]

Parliamentary copyright was created by the Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1988 and its duration rules are the same as for Crown copyright materials created after 30 August 1989.

Ordinary copyright[edit]

For ordinary copyright works the largest distinction is between those with a known author and those with a pseudonymous or anonymous author. There are also distinctions in copyright term between artistic works and sound recordings. The commencement dates for the Copyright Act 1957 and the Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1988 are also crucial.

If the work was created after 30 August 1989 and has a known author copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author. If the work was photograph with a known author taken before 30 June 1957 then copyright also expires 70 years after the death of the author. If the work is a non-photograph artistic work with a known author which was created prior to 30 August 1989 then several scenarios can apply:

  1. If the work was published during the author's lifetime then copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author.
  2. If the work was published before 30 August 1989 and the author died more than 20 years before publication then copyright expires 50 years after publication.
  3. If the work was published before 30 August 1989 and the author died less than 20 years before publication then copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author.
  4. If the work was not published before 30 August 1989 and the author died after 1968 then copyright expires 70 years after the death of the author.
  5. If the work was not published before 30 August 1989 and the author died before 1969 then copyright expires at the end of 2039.

If the author is unknown then the basic time period to bear in mind is 70 years. If the work has an unknown author and was created after 30 August 1989 copyright expires either 70 years after creation or if during that period the work is made available to the public 70 years after that. If the work is a photograph with an unknown author taken before 1 June 1957 then copyright expires 70 years after creation or if during that period the work is made available to the public 70 years after that. If the work was created before 1969 with an unknown author then several scenarios can apply:

  1. If the work was published before 30 August 1989 then copyright expires 70 years after first publication.
  2. If the work is unpublished and was first made available to the public after 1968 then copyright expires 70 years after the work was first made available to the public.
  3. If the work is unpublished and has never been made available to the public then copyright expires at the end of 2039.
  4. If the work is unpublished and was first made available to the public before 1969 then copyright expires at the end of 2039.

For a summary of these rules see the flowchart [31].

The rules for ordinary copyright sound recordings are the same as for Crown copyright sound recordings.

Typographical copyright[edit]

If scanning a copyright-expired work from a British publication typographical copyright must be borne in mind. This subsists for 25 years from creation of the publication and covers the typographical arrangement of the publication. It does not exist in the United States.

Publication right[edit]

One related right to copyright that must be borne in mind in the United Kingdom is publication right. This applies to ordinary copyright works but does not apply to Crown copyright works. If the copyright of an unpublished work has expired (virtually impossible before 2039) then the first publisher of that work is entitled to publication right over that work. Publication right has the same rules as copyright but only lasts for 25 years. It does not exist in the United States.

Database right[edit]

If scanning material from a publication from 1982 or later database right must also be borne in mind. This right normally lasts 15 years from creation or substantial amendment of the database. Many books count as databases due to their systematic arrangement of information. Under transitional provisions works created from 1982-1997 are also covered by database right until the end of 2012, ie 15 years after the passage of the original legislation. It does not exist in the United States.

Exceptions to copyright[edit]

As with many other countries the UK defines an exception to copyright infringement for artistic works on public display. Section 62 of the Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1988 states that it is not an infringement of copyright to film, photograph, broadcast or make a graphic image of a building, sculpture, models for buildings or work of artistic craftsmanship if that work is permanently situated in a public place or in premises open to the public.

United States[edit]

Anything published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain. Anything published before January 1, 1964 and not renewed is in the public domain (search the renewal records for books and maps here). Anything published before March 1, 1989 with no copyright notice ("©", "Copyright" or "Copr.") plus the year of publication (may be omitted in some cases) plus the copyright owner (or pseudonym) is in the public domain.

Photographic works created after January 1, 1978 are protected for 70 years after the death of the creator. Works created but not published before January 1, 1978 are protected for 95 years from the date they were registered for copyright, or 95 (for anonymous or pseudonymous works) or 120 years (for works by individuals) from year of creation, whichever expires first. (see [32] for more information)

Works by the US Government[edit]

A work by the US federal Government is in the public domain.

  • Images on government or government agency websites are not necessarily public domain; always look for copyright notices or similar. Especially the images on the favourite website "Astronomy Picture of the Day" are in most cases not within the public domain but all rights reserved by their individual authors (so please do not upload images from there to Wikimedia Commons).
  • This does not include governments of the individual states.
  • This does not include government-funded corporations like Amtrak or the USPS. In particular, the USPS holds copyright on all US postage stamps produced after 1978 (older US stamps are all public domain).
  • This also does not include works commissioned by the US Government, but produced by contractors; in this case, the copyright may have been assigned to the US Government (for instance, the copyright of the official Ada programming language manual was assigned to the US Department of Defense).
  • Some US government agencies may work in cooperation with other agencies or corporations; this is in particular the case of NASA, which operates the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in cooperation with Caltech, and operates a number of space projects in cooperation with foreign agencies such as ESA and CNES. Only materials solely produced by NASA will be in the public domain. The other agencies may hold copyright on some material, including material published on NASA sites (there will be copyright notices in that case).
  • Commercial use of some Federal images, such as identifying insignia or identification, is prohibited however. Fraudulent use (such as wearing military decorations without authorization) is also banned.
    • The w:United States Army Institute of Heraldry—the official custodian of ALL United States governmental images has addressed this issue with its Copyright statement, which informs the reader as to how to meet any commercial needs under this statute.

Yemen[edit]

Yemeni Law states that photos and two dimensional artistic works are protected for 10 years starting from the beginning of the publication year. It also states that television screenshots are protected for 3 years starting from the original broadcast date.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. Dessa upphovsrättsliga friheter kan dock vara begränsade av till exempel lokal lagstiftning, varumärkesskydd eller andra lagar som Wikimedia Commons inte kan redogöra för. Wikimedia Commons strävar efter att redogöra för sådana begränsningar på berörda filers beskrivningssidor, men den som använder sig av filen ansvarar själv för att den specifika tillämpningen inte bryter mot några lagar. Man bör vara särskilt uppmärksam på att ett och samma verk kan vara upphovsrättsskyddat olika länge i olika länder. Många licenser som används på Commons, såsom GFDL och Creative Commons Erkännande-Dela Lika, kräver att härledda verk som publiceras lyder under samma licensvillkor.
  2. Se Ets-Hokin v. Skyy Spirits Inc, där rätten fann att Skyys vodkaflaska och logotyp inte var föremål för upphovsrättsligt skydd.
  3. The definition of a photographic work, as opposed to a photo, is not precisely defined. There are still no precedents on this, but in practice "artistic or scientific value" has come to apply only to photos with distinctive originality, not to snapshot-like photos such as press photos.

External links[edit]

Collections of laws:

Copyright treaties:

Other:


[[Category:Commons policies]] [[Category:Commons help]]