Commons:Sources problématiques

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Cette page du projet dans d’autres langues :

Wikimedia Commons n'accepte que les images :

  • qui sont explicitement sous licence libre, ou
  • qui appartiennent au domaine public au moins aux États-Unis et dans le pays d'origine du document.

De nombreuses images provenant de multiples sources correspondent à ces critères. Mais certaines sources, en particulier sur internet, peuvent être problématiques. Elles hébergent des images qui, à première vue, paraissent libres ou être dans le domaine public, mais qui en fait sont protégées par copyright.

Cette page liste des sources potentiellement problématiques.

Catalogues d'images[edit]

Flickr[edit]

Main page: Commons:Fichiers de Flickr.

Flickr est une ressource remarquable qui héberge de nombreuses images sous licence libre. Cependant, on doit faire attention avant d'importer une image de Flickr dans Commons.

  • La plupart des images Flickr contiennent la mention "This photo is public" (cette photo est publique). Il ne s'agit en aucun cas d'une affirmation sur le copyright de l'image. Elle indique juste que l'image peut être vue par quiconque.
  • Le statut sur le copyright est indiqué par une ligne disant soit "© All rights reserved" ("© Tous droits réservés") soit "Some rights reserved" ("Certains droits réservés").
    • S'il est indiqué "All rights reserved", l'image n'est pas sous licence libre et ne doit pas être tranférée sur Commons.
    • S'il est indiqué "Some rights reserved", cliquer sur ce texte (c'est un hyperlien) qui mène à une page de licence expliquant les conditions d'utilisation pour cette image. Si la licence indique quoi que ce soit concernant une utilisation "non commerciale" (non-commercial) ou l'interdiction de travail dérivé (no derivative), il ne s'agit pas d'une licence libre, et l'image ne doit pas être placée sur Commons. S'il est seulement mentionné des conditions de "paternité" (attribution) et de "partage des conditions initiales à l'identique" (share alike), alors l'image est transférable sur Commons.

Même si une image Flickr est sous la licence libre {{cc-by}} ou {{cc-by-sa}}, quelques précautions sont à prendre. Tout le monde peut importer n'importe quoi sur Flickr en y apposant n'importe quelle licence. Certaines personnes importent des documents protégés par copyright en les plaçant sous licence libre, alors même qu'elles n'en sont pas détenteurs des droits. Nous appelons ceci "flickrwashing", ou un "flickrvio". Il est nécessaire de faire usage d'un peu de bon sens. Est-il plausible que celui qui a importé une image sur Flickr en soit réellement l'auteur ? Si ça ressemble à un poster, une photo promotionnelle, un fond d'écran, un économiseur d'écran, une photo de célébrité, une publicité ou autre, c'est suspect. Regardez alors les autres images importées par le même utilisateur. Si d'autres documents du même type sont présents, un prudence supplémentaire s'impose.

Un autre problème rapporté est le fait qu'un utilisateur de Flickr peut changer les licences de ses images, sans qu'il n'y ait d'historique visible de ces changements. Une image peut être sous licence libre à un moment mais être placée plus tard sous une licence plus restrictive ou même sous la mention "All rights reserved" (tous droits réservés). Les images provenant de Flickr importées sur Commons sont donc vérifiées automatiquement par un programme qui tourne sur Commons. Si le programme trouve que l'image est bien disponible sur Flickr avec une licence libre, il enregistre ce fait dans la page de description de l'image. Des utilisateurs de confiance (administrateurs et autres utilisateurs approuvés par la communauté) peuvent aussi vérifier manuellement les licences Flickr. Si la licence Flickr change après cette vérification, l'image sera conservée sur Commons puisque les licences libres ne peuvent pas être retirées.

Le système FlickrLickr peut aussi être utilisé pour importer sur Commons des images de Flickr ayant une licence adéquate.

Projet Gutenberg[edit]

Bien qu'il ne soit pas principalement un dépôt d'images, le Projet Gutenberg inclut aussi ce qui a été publié dans les livres qu'il héberge. Le problème est qu'il opère exclusivement dans le cadre de la loi américaine et considère quoique ce soit publié avant 1923 comme étant dans le domaine public. Il affirme uniquement que ses livres sont dans le domaine public aux États-Unis [1][2].

Les travaux non états-uniens trouvés sur le projet Gutenberg peuvent être hébergés ici sur Commons uniquement s'ils sont aussi dans le domaine public dans leur pays étranger d'origine. C'est un écueil subtil que même les contributeurs expérimentés ne peuvent tout le temps éviter.

Les illustrations des livres de Beatrix Potter, par exemple, sont sous copyright au Royaume-Uni jusqu'à 70 ans après la mort de l'auteur, c'est-à-dire, jusqu'à la fin 2013 (Potter est aussi l'auteure des illustrations). À titre d'exemple, Le Conte de Jeannot Lapin a été publié en 1904 simultanément aux États-Unis et au Royaume-Uni.[3] L’œuvre est dans le domaine public aux États-Unis, mais pas au Royaume-Uni, où elle est considérée comme une œuvre britannique. En tant qu'œuvre britannique, ses images sont aussi sous copyright dans le reste de l'Union Européenne. Par conséquent, les illustrations ne peuvent être hébergées sur Commons.

Other examples are Alice B. Woodward's illustrations in Adventures in Toyland: Woodward was British, died 1951, and the book was originally published in the UK in 1897. Or Edmund Dulac's (d. 1953) illustrations in Stories from Hans Andersen, Hodder & Stoughton, London 1911. Or also most illustrations by Arthur Rackham (d. 1939).

Photographs from Gutenberg e-books may also pose problems. One example are British photographs that appeared in Newcomb, A; Blackford, K.M.H.: Analyzing Character, Blackford, New York, 1922. That book is in the public domain in the U.S. But the photo of John Masefield (Fig. 33), for instance, was done by E. O. Hoppe (d. 1972), a British photographer,[4] and the photo of Henry Hartley Fowler (Fig. 63) was taken by Ernest Herbert Mills (d. 1942), another British photographer.[5]

In some cases, such images can be hosted at the English-language Wikiprojects. The English Wikipedia operates only under U.S. law, and thus considers any work published before 1923 as being in the public domain. See Image:Henry_Fowler.jpg, Image:John Masefield head.jpg, or also en:Category:Edmund Dulac. The correct license tag for such images at the English Wikipedia is {{PD-US-1923-abroad}}.

When can such works be hosted at the Commons? That depends. If published before 1923, the works will be in the public domain in both the U.S. and in their source country (as required by the Commons) once they go out of copyright in the non-U.S. source country. For Potter's works, that's at the end of 2013, Woodward's at the end of 2021, Dulac's at the end of 2023, and Rackham's at the end of 2009.

If first published after 1923, it depends on the effect of the URAA copyright restoration for foreign works in the U.S. (But such works are not (or should not be) hosted at Gutenberg either, since they are copyrighted today in the U.S., too.) Works that were simultaneously published (i.e., within 30 days) in the foreign source country and in the U.S. are treated as both U.S. and foreign works. In the foreign source country, they are domestic works. In the U.S., they are U.S. works, and as such not subject to the URAA copyright restorations. But if the work was first published in the U.S. more than 30 days after the foreign publication, and its copyright was not renewed in the U.S. or the U.S. publication otherwise failed to comply with the U.S. requirements for copyrights, then the work was subject to these URAA restorations. The URAA restored the U.S. copyrights on such works if they were still copyrighted in their foreign source country on the URAA date, which is January 1, 1996 for most countries. (List of URAA dates.) If the U.S. copyright on a foreign work was restored in the U.S., it was restored to the full U.S. term: 95 years since the original publication for works published 1923 - 1977. Such works may be uploaded only if both this U.S. 95-year term and the copyright term in the non-U.S. country (typically 70 years after the author's death) have expired.

For works created and published 1978 or later, the U.S. copyright term is also 70 years after the author's death. For works that were created before 1978 but first published 1978 to 2002, the U.S. has a special rule: such works are copyrighted in the U.S. to the later of the end of 2047 or 70 years after the author's death.

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum[edit]

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) displays a lot of images from World War II. Their sourcing is inadequate; they very often state only who gave the photo to them, but not where the image originally came from and who the photographer was. On many images, they state "© USHMM".

Many of their images are evidently German photos taken by Germans during World War II. These photos must not be uploaded here (yet) even in cases where the USHMM claims the images were in the public domain as they are in general copyrighted in their source country, Germany, for 70 years after the photographer's death. (Or until 70 years after the original publication or the creation, if the author of the photo is truly unknown.) In the U.S. (and in the UK), such photos may indeed be in the public domain due to special legislation concerning confiscated enemy property, but this does not make the images copyright-free in Germany. You may, however, upload such images locally at the English Wikipedia, where their description should include the tag {{Do not move to Commons}}. This applies to all images at the USHMM where a German origin must be assumed (for instance, all images from Nazi calendars). Unfortunately, this means that nearly all photos of Nazi leaders are off-limits for the Commons.

Other images at the USHMM may be fine to upload here under the tag {{PD-USGov}} or one of its subtags. In particular, mugshots of the accused in the Nuremberg Trials and the Subsequent Nuremberg Trials may be assumed to have been taken by U.S. officials as part of their duties, and likewise for images from the courtrooms in those trials. Some such images were also published in the proceedings of these trials, the "blue" and "green series".

Images on which the USHMM claims copyright, either for themselves ("© USHMM") or for someone else ("© any") must not be uploaded at all. Even if the USHMM itself is unlikely to be the owner of the copyrights on all such images, it must be assumed that a "© USHMM" is a cautionary copyright notice indicating that someone still holds the copyright. Maybe the USHMM, or maybe someone else. (Museums and archives frequently do this instead of placing individual copyright notices giving the true owner of the copyright.)

Common cases[edit]

Celebrity shots[edit]

Freely licensed photos of celebrities (actors, football/soccer/rugby/tennis/... players and other athletes, pin-up girls, porn "stars", and so on) are hard to find. Most such photos, even if claimed to be freely licensed, are actually copyrighted, and most copies of such photos that you can find on-line are actually copyright violations (or used on these web sites under a restrictive license or under a "fair use" claim).

For celebrity photos, there are several places where one may check whether the image is such a copyrighted photo:

If an image is listed at one of these sites, it's copyrighted and not freely licensed, and thus must not be uploaded at the Commons. Of course, Google's image search can also help.

Extreme negative example: Commons:Deletion requests/Image:Keira Knightley.jpg.

Fan sites[edit]

Fan sites very often use celebrity photos without caring much about copyright. (A few fan sites may actually have their own photos, but that's the exception from the norm.) For instance, many images found here are actually copyright violations taken from FilmMagic. Furthermore, many such fan sites are notoriously bad about maintaining credits for images. For instance, there is no photographer info at all for the images found here, not even any uploader info. At least some of these images are copyright violations. For instance, this image is clearly the same as image ID 2434227, ©RDiamond/WireImage, 23 Mar 2004.

Photographs from fan sites should therefore in general not be uploaded to the commons. We need precise and correct photographer and location information, and precise and correct licensing information, and the license must be a free license. Because fan sites often do not own the copyright to the images they host, it is futile to ask the operators of fan sites for a permission.

Example: Commons:Deletion requests/Image:BrendaSong Katrina.jpg

Forums and blogs[edit]

Images from blogs should in general not be uploaded to the commons. In virtually all cases, blog authors do not own the copyrights on the images they show, very often, they just hotlink to images hosted on other sites. An image from a blog is acceptable at the Commons only if

  • the image is not hotlinked from some other site, and
  • there's a clear statement by the blog author on his blog that he is the rightful owner of the copyright on the image and that he licenses it under a free license: either that he places the image into the public domain, or if he mentions a specific license explicitly (such as {{cc-by}}, {{cc-by-sa}}, or {{GFDL}}) and that license is a free license, and
  • if there are no indications that the blog author's statement was incorrect. Such an indication would be for instance finding the image on other websites where content is typically not freely licensed (commercial image banks, newspapers, etc.), or also if the image is found elsewhere, and it has a higher resolution or was uploaded earlier at that other website. (The Wayback Machine of the Internet Archive can help to find out when an image first appeared at a particular web site.)

If you contact a blog author to obtain a permission, make sure the permission gets also sent to our OTRS permission archive, and please consider using one of our e-mail templates.

Promotional photos[edit]

Promotional photos or press release photos are copyrighted. Despite common and misleadingly vague phrases such as "may be used freely", publicity photographs are generally provided with the understanding that they will be used in unmodified form for informational purposes in a context related to the subject of the photographs (such as an article about the product, company, or person depicted). Uses of such images are thus restricted to reporting about a particular event or to promoting a product or person. This is essentially a restricted, revocable license, and does not imply that anyone were free to use the work for any purpose (commercial or noncommercial) in modified or unmodified form. Such releases are not a free license.

Promotional photos may be uploaded to the Commons only if there is an explicit release under a free license. Preferrably, that release is also sent to our permissions archive (OTRS).

Professional photographers' images[edit]

Professional photographers' photos are very rarely freely licensed. But some professionals do license some of their work freely, and some even contribute themselves to the Commons by uploading their own work. This is great. But sometimes third parties upload professional photos of others at the commons. To avoid copyright violations, we can accept professional photographers' works only if:

  • The source, photographer, rights owner, and specific license are clearly indicated. (That is actually true for all image uploads at the Commons.)
  • An explicit release confirming the license has been sent by the photographer (or rights owner) or forwarded by a Commons contributor to our OTRS permission archive. The e-mail address is permissions-commons@wikimedia.org.

Sending a release to OTRS is imperative if the images have already been published elsewhere in a book or online. In that case, the photographer/rights owner should also double-check: if he granted someone else an exclusive license to publish the image, he cannot himself freely relicense and upload the image at the Commons. An explicit release sent to OTRS is also mandatory if the image is not uploaded by the photographer/rights owner him- or herself. To request permission, please consider using one of our e-mail templates.

If you yourself are a professional photographer and upload your own photos, you also must send an explicit release for any of your images that already have been published elsewhere. We even strongly encourage sending an explicit release to OTRS for your as yet unpublished own work of professional quality, as it helps prevent future confusions. An additional way of leaving a permanent record (but not a substitute for an OTRS release!) is to put author and licensing information into the EXIF data of the image itself.

You may be actively contributing to the Commons now. But will you do so in ten years? In twenty years? In that time, your freely licensed image may have appeared in countless other places, and the provenance of the image and the fact that it was originally rightfully uploaded here under a free license may have gotten lost. (It shouldn't, but such things happen.) If in ten years some confusion arises whether one of your images was wrongly uploaded and was actually a copyright violation, an explicit OTRS release stored in our archive goes a long way to resolving the matter quickly.

An example of a professional photographer's photo that would have been deleted here had we not succeeded in getting an explicit release is Image:5705 MNA12064 C Recoura.jpg

Images of copyrighted artwork[edit]

TBD. Examples: photos of paintings of recently deceased or still living painter. Again, we need an explicit release sent to OTRS, otherwise not acceptable. Example: Commons:Deletion requests/Image:Peter-Lalor-by-Peter-Graham.jpg.

Sculptures etc.: unless the artwork is permanently installed in a public place in a country that does have "freedom of panorama", we again need an OTRS release by the copyright owner of the artwork shown in the image. Example: Image:Babe Ruth statue.jpg (sculptor has agreed to GFDL for the image).

Particular cases[edit]

Lafayette Studio[edit]

In general, images made by the Lafayette Studio and archived at the V&A Museum are copyright, even though these are old photos and the photographers died more than 70 years ago.[6] The problem with these images is that most of them were never published while they were originally under copyright. The negatives were "lost", then rediscovered in 1968, and then again forgotten until 1988.[7] They were presumably first published in 2002 at the V&A web site, then at [8].

In the EU, there is a so-called publication right. If a hitherto unpublished work is published for the first time after the work's original copyright has expired, the publisher is granted an exclusive publication right on the work for 25 years from the publication date. This is the case with many of the Lafayette photos.

Lafayette Studio photographs may only be uploaded if it can reasonably be asserted that the image was published while it was originally under copyright (details of the earlier publication must be given on the image description page). Otherwise, it must be assumed that the V&A Museum indeed holds a publication right on these images.

Examples: Commons:Deletion requests/Image:Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany (1859-1941).jpg, Commons:Deletion requests/Image:Consuelo Vanderbilt;coronation- 9 augustus 1902.jpg, Commons:Deletion requests/Archive/2006/04#Image:Lafayette 1899 arthur reginald french.jpg

Voir aussi[edit]