Commons:Sexual content/2009

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Wikimedia projects are not censored, which in practice means that we permit Sexual content in many areas. This proposal aims to work towards establishing a broad community consensus on what types of images serve the project well in which contexts, and where exactly we 'set the bar' on Sexual content on Wikimedia Commons.

For many reasons, it is sensible to apply rigour in establishing the usefulness of material broadly construed as 'sexual content' within Wikimedia. Any material which on balance serves a useful purpose should be preserved.

Related information[edit]

The Commons policy on censorship is based on the principle that we don't omit anything to protect the readers. This proposal is based on the idea that we might voluntarily choose to develop a clear set of standards relating to sexual content on Wikimedia Commons.

policy / internal 'Wikipedia' pages

pages detailing external considerations

personal views and input

Current Practice[edit]

All media featuring identifiable people are covered by this guideline, which contains some information on 'moral issues'. Media featuring nudity is covered by this guideline. In practice this creates some small cracks, for example a photograph of a naked person from behind, or with the face cropped from the photo, is not currently covered by the 'identifiable people' guideline, hence the 'moral issues' are inapplicable. Further, we warn downstream users of possible 'personality rights' issues, which may restrict the utility of the media, but we don't currently allow this aspect to inform a deletion discussion, except in cases where the subject is clearly identifiable.

Proposal 1 - Sexual content restricted from userspace[edit]

Sexual content is restricted from userspace. Hyperlinking to such material is acceptable.

Proposal 2 - A sexual content flag[edit]

See also w:Wikipedia:Descriptive_image_tagging

The community could support the creation of a 'sexual content flag' - which allows users to choose whether or not explicit content (perhaps judged loosely by the 'safe for work' bar) will appear. This may be achievable through some implementation of the flagged revisions extension, or require further development.

If such a flag were technically feasible, then it may further be sensible to develop a policy surrounding the terms of use - for example inviting users to confirm that they are of a certain age, and that certain material is legal in their jurisdiction etc. - this is similar to the approach taken at Flickr for example.

Proposal 3 - Model ages, releases, and personality rights[edit]

See also Commons:Non-copyright restrictions

It is self-evidently responsible to apply particular rigour in establishing model release, and the age of models in all sexual content. The community may work on proposals to increase confidence that all images are legal, and appropriately released. The uploader, and those wishing retain the image for an encyclopedic purpose, should endeavor to provide some evidence that the content is suitable for inclusion.

Current System[edit]

Assume good faith of uploader - a trust based system. Little specific information outside licensing currently required or invited to be submitted

Additional Measures[edit]

  • Ask uploaders to confirm the age of models in media containing sexual content
  • Delete sexual content tagged with the 'personality rights' template as potentially harmful.
  • Promote the use of the OTRS system to allow some records (for example model ages and releases) to be submitted
  • Delete Sexual content where no information concerning model ages and release is present
  • Clarify existing practice in terms of explicit imagery - what material is desirable, what material is less useful etc.

Further Proposals[edit]

Please feel free to use this space, and the talk page, to develop ideas and further policy work in this area.