Commons:Copyright rules by territory/American Samoa

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Location of American Samoa

American Samoa is an unincorporated territory of the United States located in the South Pacific Ocean, southeast of Samoa.


Under the 1899 Tripartite Convention Germany and the United States partitioned the Samoan Islands. Germany took the larger islands to the west, now Samoa, while the United States took the smaller eastern island group, known as the Tutuila Islands in 1900 and officially Manu'a in 1904. The United States formally annexed the islands in 1902, and in 1911 renamed them American Samoa. American Samoa became self-governing under a constitution effective from 1 July 1967, but is on the United Nations list of Non-Self-Governing Territories.


American Samoa laws are subject to a constitution that became effective 17 October 1960.[1][2] A Constitutional Convention of American Samoa in Fagatogo begun on 26 September 1966 and approved several amendments.[3] These were approved in a referendum in the general elections in 1966, and became effective 1 July 1967.[4]

Of the organized territories, the United States Copyright Office says that: "U.S. federal copyright law applies in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands but not in American Samoa."[5] Title 27 of the American Samoa Consolidated Legislation - Code Annotated (ASCA), related to Commerce and Trade, prohibits import of export of Goods, merchandise or commodities that violate international or U.S. copyright or patent laws, but does not otherwise mention copyright law.[6]

The rules governing copyright in American Samoa are therefore unclear, beyond the standard requirement that material must be must be in the public domain, or available under a free license, in the United States before it can be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons.

Copyright tags[edit]

Further information: Commons:Copyright rules by territory/United States#TAG


Further information: Commons:Copyright rules by territory/United States#CUR

Freedom of panorama[edit]

Further information: Commons:Copyright rules by territory/United States#FOP


Further information: Commons:Copyright rules by territory/United States#Stamps

See also[edit]


  1. Leibowitz, 1980, p. 254
  2. Leibowitz, 1989, p. 420
  3. Leibowitz, 1980, pp. 254-255
  4. Revised Constitution of American Samoa. International Labour Organization (ILO) (1967). Retrieved on 2020-03-23.
  5. Circular 38a: International Copyright Relations of the United States 14. U.S. Copyright Office. Retrieved on 2019-03-14.
  6. American Samoa Consolidated Legislation - Code Annotated (ASCA) : Commerce and Trade [Title 27]. Pacific Islands Legal Information Institute (2020). Retrieved on 2020-03-23.


Caution: The above description may be inaccurate, incomplete and/or out of date, so must be treated with caution. Before you upload a file to Wikimedia Commons you should ensure it may be used freely. See also: Commons:General disclaimer