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# 💭 Title 💬 👥 🙋 Last editor 🕒 (UTC)
1 Guidance re possible copyleft trolling 131 28 D. Benjamin Miller 2024-04-13 17:24
2 Double categories 7 4 Oxyman 2024-04-12 01:28
3 Help locating photo origin 0 0
4 Making CC BY-SA 3.x/GFDL files available under CC BY-SA 4.0 6 3 Jeff G. 2024-04-09 09:42
5 POV image description 19 12 Yann 2024-04-13 18:50
6 Christian religious art question 5 3 Jmabel 2024-04-09 14:54
7 Discussion about new tool for detecting logos 1 1 Sannita (WMF) 2024-04-09 10:20
8 Potential identification issue with photos from 10 4 Monster Iestyn 2024-04-14 01:14
9 Proposal affecting FoP Chile 76 15 Prosfilaes 2024-04-15 23:32
10 automatically use "Igen|Matplotlib|+|s=|code=" template 0 0
11 Wikimedia Summit 7 5 Ciell 2024-04-14 13:31
12 Why does my PDF have dimensions 0×0? 5 4 Marnanel 2024-04-12 18:21
13 djvu is tiny and in the corner 2 1 Marnanel 2024-04-15 20:48
14 New cats for computer hardware by year 13 6 Oxyman 2024-04-15 23:58
15 COM:FOP in the Netherlands? 8 3 JWilz12345 2024-04-15 05:23
16 Exporting Images at Full Resolution from Website 5 2 Noha307 2024-04-16 01:54
17 How do I import a set from the LOC website? 2 2 Jmabel 2024-04-16 03:53
18 Public interiors in Ecuador 2 2 Юрий Д.К. 2024-04-15 15:38
19 Obvious copyvio patrol bot 4 4 Omphalographer 2024-04-15 18:52
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People of Ngadisan (Java, Indonesia) are filling their cans at the village pump. The old well is defunct and replaced by a water tap. [add]
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March 28[edit]

Guidance re possible copyleft trolling[edit]

This is a continuation of the discussion now on the archive at

I'm unsure of the correct protocols, but I'd asked if this was an appropriate place to raise suspicion about a photographer who may be acting as a copyleft troll and was advised by user Nosferattus to post the details here.

The photographer I suspect of trolling is called David Iliff. As I said above, I can't be sure he's using this as a business model, but there's enough evidence to suspect it.

When Pixsy made a claim against me for one of Mr Iliff's photos, I found the following messages on and took the precaution of copying the text. However I now see that this page was edited on 7th March 2024 and all these items about Pixsy and permissions have been removed, including the Wikipedia links for the people who wrote them. So most of the evidence seems to have been removed, unless you have a way to backtrack?

1) Mary Finchley 6 Feb 2024 - Pixsy asking for £450 for CC image used on website. They ask Mr Iliff if Pixsy genuinely represents him. No reply

2) Mook200 ( ) Jan 2024. Mark Brierly for a musicians charity. Asked Mr Iliff to call Pixsy off. I emailed Mr Brierly. He replied 29th Jan that he hadn't had any reply from Mr Iliff and didn't expect to. (image: Westminster Cathedral)

3) Andrew ( Jan 2024 demand from 'a company' (image: Hereford Cathedral)

 Dear Mr Lliff, I have recieved a letter from a company demanding quite a substanial amount of money for using your image and not displaying your information clearly. In asking the company for more details they tend to respond with quite abrubt unhelpful information. It has meant we have removed the image from our website, which is a shame as it is a stunning image but the last thing we want to do is use an image without permission. As a small company we rely on artists like yourself who are kind enough to allow people to use their images and we are very careful to check licenses to make sure we are using them correctly and would of course correct anything if contacted. Would you be able to confirm if the company contacting us are indeed legitimate as the correspondence does come across a lot like spam. If you do not have any notification of this case and a company acting on your behalf, I would happily open up a discussion about putting the image back on our website in a way which would be of agreement to you.I am sorry to bother you with this and appreciate your time. (No reply)

4) Snbalaji2 ( Jan 2024 re Pixsy. Says Pixsy have not provided evidence they represent Iliff so asking him directly if they do (image: Thames Sunset Panorama)

- We used an image of the London_Thames_Sunset_panorama_ _Feb_2008 for a brief period on our LinkedIn page as a banner, but inadvertently did not provide the correct attribution. We apologise for this oversight. I was not aware that the image is licensed to you and as soon as we became aware, we immediately removed the image. However, we have received an email from Pixy with an extremely large retroactive licensing fee for an image used on a web page which is now archived. We are a small advisory company who gets less than 100 visits per year on our LinkedIn page. Could you please first confirm that Pixy is acting on your behalf and that this is not a spam or phishing email? Pixsy have been unwilling to provide any evidence that they are acting for you in spite of repeated requests. No contracts with you have been shared and that leads me to believe that Pixsy are making a fraudulent claim using your name. The case reference that Pixsy has quoted is 002-203834.

5) Hazel (Hazeom) ( ) 2023 being chased by Fossick for unauthorised use (Fossik is an Estonian company, now in liquidation, which Pixsy cite as being an agent of Mr Iliff)

- Hi We have received a message from a company requesting that we pay a large sum of money for using your Wikimedia image of Joss bay in a post about dog friendly beaches in Broadstairs. We are a small veterinary practice in Broadstairs and were quite alarmed by the letter, as the image is available on Wikimedia which is copyright free. Can you confirm that Fossick pictures is acting on your behalf? 

-6) Alan Foster approx 2021 asking if Fossick represent Iliff

- Out of interest, are you associated with a company based in Estonia called fossick OU as they are claiming to be the license sellers of your images. I notice your images are on here under GNU so just clarifying the copywrite for a fiend
- No reply

7) Martinsimpson being chased by Fossick; image Tower Bridge 2006; Aug 2020; asks if Fossick represents him

 >Hello David, i believe we used one of your images for a blog post back in 2015, the chap that did the blog is no longer working with us so we are not 100% sure where the image came from, but we assume it was from Wiki? The image was used in good faith with no intention of making money. The assumption was that all images on the Wiki commons files were free to use? To the point we are being taken to court by Fossick Picture for copyright infringement. The person taking us to court is a Mr Leopold Kamugyene the company Fossick is not registered in the uk so we dont know if they are fraudulent as they are registered in Estonia with an office in London. They are using your name to make the claim, if you could advise if the image does or does not have any copyright infringements on Wiki please. Sorry for this just we are a small company and we dont know if Fossick are just going around making scam claims on small vulnerable companies. My apologies if the image has copyrights, we assume the image was free to use, see our very basic blog:

The following are additional cases from outside Wikipedia:

8) My own case Jan 2024 - Pixsy claiming £900 for a Wikimedia image of Hammersmith Bridge by Mr Iliff which was CC3. I didn't provide the correct attribution. This is ongoing. (,_London,_UK_-_April_2012.jpg)

9) Reddit discussion ( Claim for Mr Iliff by Fossik . From what I can gather Fossik, an Estonian company, carried out Mr Iliff's claims for CC2 and CC3 lack of attribution before he started using Pixsy. 10) Copyright Aid forum ( Website owner closed down his site after Pixsy demand on behalf of Mr Iliff.

All these instances relate to images available on Wikimedia under CC 2 or CC 3. Mr Iliff has an extensive presence on Flickr with most photos available by CC2 or CC3. His photos are also available on Dreamstime but not the same ones. So it seems the photos in question were only available under CC, not in any 'paid' sites. While I respect the right of photographers to follow up copyright issues, I am aware of the distress caused by companies who act on this way on behalf of photographers and having read plenty about what is called 'copyleft trolling' it seems that these cases fit the description. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Normanlamont (talk • contribs) 16:13, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Normanlamont: It seems that Diliff irregularly archives their user talk page. The last archiving was in this edit 22:39, 19 October 2017 (UTC). All of the archives are listed in the "Archive:" area of the top, as follows:[reply]
Archive 1 - (13th August 2005 to 5th of July 2009)
Archive 2 - (5th of July 2009 to 2nd of July 2014)
Archive 3 - (3nd of July 2014 to 6th of January 2015)
Archive 4 - (6th of January 2015 to 12th of July 2015)
Archive 5 - (12th of July 2015 to 20th of October 2017)
  — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 16:39, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Note that the existence of Archive 3 appeared to defy the timeline.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 16:42, 28 March 2024 (UTC) *until I changed the dates on archives 3 and 4 from 2014 to 2015.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 13:45, 29 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Normanlamont: A quick note: all the messages that you quote are on Diliff's user talk page on English Wikipedia, en:User talk:Diliff, which is why you can't find them on his user talk page here on Commons. --bjh21 (talk) 17:13, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks - that explains it. Normanlamont (talk) 19:38, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]

It would be a pity to have to propose removing such excellent images from Commons, but if User:Diliff is repeatedly threatening lawsuits rather than giving people a reasonable opportunity to correct lack of appropriate credits, and has no interest in changing that approach, that is exactly what I would propose. - Jmabel ! talk 22:30, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Jmabel: I would then concur.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 13:46, 29 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I'm unfamiliar with how this works. Whose decision is it to take action or not? Normanlamont (talk) 19:44, 29 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Normanlamont: to take what action? If you are referring to my comment above, it would be like any other deletion requests. - Jmabel ! talk 20:04, 29 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
How "incorrect" are the credits? Are the users just omitting any credit (as if they were PD?). Enhancing999 (talk) 07:27, 30 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I don't know. In all the cases the image has been taken down as soon as the demand was made,so we have only what people have posted to go on. In my case, after using four images that were public domain, I didn't scroll down on the Iliff image to see that it wasn't, and used it uncredited. My fault, but it doesn't matter to Pixsy whether you didn't attribute it or didn't attribute it exactly as demanded - they invent an amount, in my case £900, for breach of licence. It's the way they operate. The argument is that you have breached the CC rules, so there is no contract, so you should pay what a newspaper or magazine would pay for exclusive use of the image. People always ask them for a breakdown of how they arrive at the amount they demand, and they never provide it. Normanlamont (talk) 17:49, 30 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The 9 cases mentioned above seem to just be the tip of the iceberg: [1][2][3][4]. Nosferattus (talk) 17:07, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I've requested that Diliff's account be blocked at Commons:Administrators' noticeboard/User problems#User:Diliff. Nosferattus (talk) 17:32, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
This is certainly a sad case. Before we ban/block him and delete all his imagery - can we first read about the case from David Iliff himself? When I check the user page, he says he "responded privately" or "responded offwiki". What is his version of the story; how did he actually resolve these various queries? (If I were in his place, by the third or so query on my talk page, I'd have added an FAQ section to my user (or talk) page, in which I clearly outline the general answer to these questions!) --Enyavar (talk) 17:47, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Diliff is certainly welcome to comment here or anywhere else to defend his actions, but I'm pretty sure he won't. Nosferattus (talk) 18:20, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Very difficult issue. First of all, there is some recent precedent with the Marco Verch case here: Commons:Village_pump/Archive/2022/01#Cory_Doctorow_post_on_"copyleft_trolls"_mentions_Commons and here Commons:Administrators'_noticeboard/Archive_88#Proposal_to_ban_uploads_from_client_of_copyleft-troll_company_Pixsy_from_Commons, which resulted in all of a user's uploads being deleted for copyleft trolling.
Diliff, however, has been involved with the Wikimedia movement for quite a long time and it cannot be said that he is here solely in order to grift money from unsuspecting media users.
He hasn't been active in a few years, but I suspect he'd be horrified to learn about someone shutting down their small travel website because of one missing attribution. Of course, I don't know Diliff, but like anyone who's been active at FPC, of course I know of Diliff.
Diliff is a much better photographer than me, but even I've been in that frustrating situation of seeing one of my images in use with improper attribution. Even in high-profile publications like Psychology Today and Business Insider, I've seen my images used with just "Wikimedia Commons" in the credit line. If I were a professional photographer who donated photos to Commons under the impression I still retained the copyright, and I saw that a bunch of big for-profit companies kept using my photos without attribution, I might be inclined to reach out to one of those services which track those companies down, too. The problem is, those companies aren't typically very flexible. They don't gain anything if I say "only enforce this against big for-profit companies and give them a chance to fix the issue first" so they go after everyone. As someone who became a photographer in order to improve free knowledge resources rather than a pro, that would be a non-starter for me. But at the end of the day, we do want people to donate their professionally taken photos, right? We do want to be able to say to them "you retain the copyright, and people who use it have to credit you", right? So what happens when someone doesn't? None of us have the tools or time to watch the whole web for violations, and none of the companies that do so take an ethical approach. So what are we to do? I don't know, but except in egregious circumstances like the Marco Verch case, I don't think we should rush to delete.
Some things to think about: should there be a popup for users who aren't logged in when they click through to the full-sized image? Should there otherwise be a bigger, more obvious notice about how to use this image? Should the Wikimedia Foundation provide legal guidance to protect the interests of its volunteer contributors on matters of copyright? Maybe it's within the WMF's resources to purchase software like Pixsy uses and then pass through a filter to apply it only to big for-profit uses or something? Thoughts... — Rhododendrites talk18:14, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I can't believe that you all want to bend over backwards to make excuses for someone who is clearly apparently exploiting Commons for their own financial gain to the detriment of the project. There is no evidence whatsoever that this copyleft trolling was just a mistake. It's been going on for years and Diliff clearly had many opportunities to see that it was causing problems and to discontinue the use of these services, but he didn't. If Diliff wants to defend himself, he is certainly welcome to, but a duck is a duck and the more we keep facilitating copyleft trolling, the sooner Commons is relegated to the dustbin of internet history, if it isn't already. Do you ever wonder why people pay hundreds of dollars to license public domain images from Alamy and Getty Images? This is why. Nosferattus (talk) 18:36, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I find your comments inappropriate and suggest that you revise or withdraw them. Enhancing999 (talk) 18:41, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
What do you find inappropriate? Nosferattus (talk) 18:45, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Professionals can contribute to WMF sites and photographers are not required to abandon all rights to their images. Accusing them of trolling when not doing so isn't appropriate. Enhancing999 (talk) 18:57, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I agree with you. No one has to abandon the rights to their images. Demanding large sums of money for attribution mistakes, even when those mistakes have been corrected, however, is copyleft trolling, and while it is completely legal it is also unethical and harms our project. Nosferattus (talk) 19:05, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Not attributing the photographer is not a minor mistake. I find your conduct harmful as it may discourage professional photographers who have participated to continue to do so. Accordingly, I suggest you revise or withdraw your comments. Enhancing999 (talk) 19:11, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I've removed the part of my comments about David wanting to make money from Commons as I think this is being misinterpreted. Making money off your Commons photos is fine and that part isn't unethical. I was pointing it out, however, as evidence that David was monetizing his images and thus that it was not implausible that he had taken this to the next level by copyleft trolling. Nosferattus (talk) 19:26, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The term "trolling" is not appropriate for photographers making a living of their art. Please remove. Enhancing999 (talk) 21:46, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for saying so. I feel like this argument wouldn't be made if, say, an author allowed their book (which was for sale in print) to be released to the public in electronic form for free, as long as the author was credited to generate interest in their work, and it wasn't republished by someone else claiming it to be in the public domain or written by the hosting website. There is an equivalence in this to my situation as a professional photographer. It's certainly bad faith and a little offensive that Nosferattus views my actions to protect my work and my source of income as copyleft trolling. Diliff (talk) 23:40, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Um. Making a living? This here left me stunned: Diliff is not the type of superpredator that the author described, he didn't mass-create stock images for a big operation. Yet, the article points out that this is really trolling and nothing else. Trolls lurk under the bridge, and as soon as they hear someone make a misstep, they appear to demand money. The author points out: "If you put a CC license on your work, the message is 'I want you to reuse this', and not 'I am a pedantic stickler for attribution strings and hoping to cash in'". He describes how the business model of the very company that Diliff used for invoices, Pixsy, is predetermined to generate false positives; which does harm; and says that 'you set landmines, so you share responsability'. In general, I have NOT met many users who are involved in Wikimedia projects to generate money, so I do think this is not "fine". However, Diliff, if your interest is in sharing your work AND get the name recognition, you might consider re-licensing under CC4 (instead of CC3, as the linked article points out). Once you do that, I don't see a problem anymore, since the updated license would give everyone involved a 30 days grace period to fix the issue after getting the first notice. Those who don't, are fair game. --Enyavar (talk) 17:06, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I completely agree with Enyavar here. - Jmabel ! talk 20:26, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I think it's not possible to re-license images already submitted (only to place CC4 in addition to CC3 etc.), and it looks like Diliff is not going to upload any further images to Commons. --A.Savin 21:16, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I assume that is due to a technical limitation and not a legal one? Cory Doctorow's article linked above [5], proposes it: "Upgrade in Place: Every repository that hosts CC works that carry pre-4.0 licenses should send an email to every account holder urging them to opt into a process to upgrade them" immediately to the latest license. Julesvernex2 (talk) 21:30, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@A.Savin: typically the case is that the reusers have not mentioned a license, and possibly not even attributed the photo. Since the issue being raised here is to allow reusers time to "cure" a defect in the notice, offering a CC-4 license as an additional license means they have that opportunity. (If they already had used one of the other licneses and conformed to its terms, then Pixsy presumably would not have a case to bring.) - Jmabel ! talk 00:54, 6 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It is not possible to revoke a CC3 license, but it's possible to offer a CC4 license. This means the user, technically speaking, can choose either the CC3 or CC4 terms. D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 17:24, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I've casually seen all this affair. I think it's urgent to have an automatic Google (or other search engine) image search for each image uploaded as "own work" that records the results somewhere. It wouldn't be useful for already uploaded files such as these, but it would prevent that the problem will recur in the future. MGeog2022 (talk) 18:53, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Template:Diliff/Licensing is a normal CC BY-SA license agreement, I'm not sure how it indicates that he is 'interested in making money off of Commons'? It's his own proprietary version of the template but the language of it is entirely compatible with a Creative Commons license. I think what has been happening has surely been distressing for the people on the receiving end of bogus copyright claims, but I see no evidence presented that these companies (one of which appears to have been registered in Estonia) are actually connected with him. Diliff has not been active on this site for years and is not here to defend himself, so when you say he 'had many opportunities to see that it was causing problems and to discontinue the use of these services', I think you need to present some evidence that these actions are actually being taken on his behalf at all. I'm not sure what legal recourse Commons users could possibly have against companies presenting bogus claims on their behalf. Cmao20 (talk) 18:56, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Diliff is still active on English Wikipedia which is where all these inquires about Pixsy and Fossick were posted, going back many years. So yes, he has had many opportunities to deny that these companies were acting on his behalf. Nosferattus (talk) 19:13, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Also, according to one of Fossick's complaint letters:[6] "Fossick OU trading as Fossick Pictures is a rights holder and has the right to act as the authorized agent of David Iliff, including licensing and resolving matters of copyright infringement." Nosferattus (talk) 19:35, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Not so. He has edited only twice in the last year, and not since 2023, when he made a tiny edit to a single sentence of an article on the Fall of Singapore. All these reports from Pixsy came from January 2024, except for one in September 2023, so, since there is no evidence he is regularly checking his user page (he has made one tiny edit since the first of these claims, and before that nothing since May 2023), he has surely had few or no opportunities to do so.
As for the claims from Fossick, these were in 2021 and he removed them claiming that they had been responded to offsite. We don't know what the contents of his response were, but given that it appears this company was registered in Estonia and no longer exists, it is quite plausible that his response was indeed to deny that these companies were acting on his behalf.
Btw, I just tried to set up an account on Pixsy and it asks for no proof that you are indeed the author of the images you claim to have taken. So I think we should assume good faith from a respected member of our community and regard these copyright claims as bogus. It would be very easy for a scammer who wants to make a quick buck to claim to be Mr Iliff, upload his pictures and generate profits from scaring people, seeing that this company seems to be rather unscrupulous and to have a business model that involves sending as many claims as possible and hoping some of them stick. Mr Iliff is one of the most prolific and widely-known photographers on Commons, and has also not been active on the site beyond two tiny edits in the past year and none since September, so his work would seem a prime target for such an activity.Cmao20 (talk) 19:40, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I can offer whatever evidence you want for my case; I can't speak for others. However for mine I was given two PDFs by Pixsy when I first heard from them. They both named Mr Iliff as the photographer, but one called 'Evidence Report' began by saying it was a case between me and David Iliff, but below that said 'Copyright Owner: Owrek Ltd, London, UK'; the other, entitled 'Unauthorised use of image' says 'Pixsy acts on behalf of David Iliff as their authorised licensing and copyright agent. We have been notified by Mr. Iliff that Norman Lamont has been using their imagery without permission or a valid license. Details of the unauthorised use are set out in this letter and the attached Evidence Report.' It gave me a couple of weeks to pay and said 'In the event that resolution with a license fee is not possible, our next steps are to forward this matter to a legal partner in your local area to secure the highest fees recoverable for copyright infringement. These fees include actual damages or statutory damages, and can include legal costs, expenses, costs affiliated with filing a lawsuit, and ensuing litigation. Fees recoverable in the event of copyright infringement typically far exceed the cost of an initial license. Pixsy has a strong history and success in the United Kingdom of bringing cases to the IPEC (Intellectual Property Enterprise Court) small claims court in matters where licensing of unauthorised use was not possible.'
I asked for evidence that Pixsy represented Mr Iliff and what the connection was with Owrek, a company registered in the UK. Mr Iliff is not named in the company documents so it's not obviously his company. Pixsy replied with a PDF document stating that Mr Iliff authorises them as his agent, signed in 2022, not by him but by Fossik OU on his behalf. This is an Estonian company now in liquidation. It was named in some of the other cases on his Wiki page as making similar demands to Pixsy. Their only reply to my point was that 'David Illif is out client and the photographer who took this image, as he works with the agency Fossick OU and Owerk LTD the copyright was signed by them on his behalf.' (They mis-spelled Owrek).
I wanted to believe that they were acting rogue and he was maybe unaware, wanting them only to chase up egregious acts like taking his photos and trying to sell them. But having spoken to someone who has a Pixsy account, I believe any action they take is actively authorised by the photographer, including declining the option to issue a takedown notice. Normanlamont (talk) 19:43, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I cannot help feeling that I want to find out he hasn't authorised this action and is not a copyright troll. I'd love to find out there's another explanation, but I'm motivated by trying to spare others (and myself) the fear of receiving huge demands and legal threats. Normanlamont (talk) 19:45, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I posted links to several inquiries on Diliff's talk page going back to 2020, all of which he removed without on-wiki responses. The Reddit thread is from 3 years ago. This activity definitely overlapped with when David was active onwiki. If these companies were rampantly engaging in fraud in David's name, it seems like he would have mentioned that on-wiki at some point. Nosferattus (talk) 19:49, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, he must be aware of these two(?) companies sending large invoices to "naive" re-users. But there is still some possibility that he settles these cases depending on the cases, giving small businesses or private people the opportunity to just fix their publications while he calls off the invoices; yet still milking larger corporations. He can't do the latter, if he's also making public statements about the former, which may be the reason for him to do it all hush-hush. Ethically, I'd see less of a problem with that, although it is still a predatory behaviour. But this is all speculative: We don't know. So here's the question:
Has he even been made aware about this debate? Neither on his User talk page here, nor in en-WP, can I spot a notification about it; only a single time is his user name linked here (does that still act as a ping?); and he has also not been active in en-WP at all this year; which may well lead to him not noticing this particular debate even if he logs on, say, next week. Have we sent him an old-fashioned email about our concerns? --Enyavar (talk) 19:57, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I didn't try to contact Mr Iliff directly but one of the other people hit with a Pixsy claim on the user page did. I emailed that person privately to ask if he'd had a reply; he hadn't and said he'd tell me if he did get one. He hasn't so far (three months later). Normanlamont (talk) 20:03, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Come to think of it, I also indicated to Pixsy that I was willing to go to the IPO Mediation Service with Mr Iliff to resolve the matter. I would hope that they would have made him aware of that offer. Pixsy ignored it in correspondence with me, not saying they had or hadn't notified him. But you'd think he'd have been made aware. Normanlamont (talk) 20:06, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Mr Iliff has not been regularly active in discussions on Commons since 2017/2018. His edits since then on Wikipedia and Commons appear to have been very sporadic and involve minor edits to articles and uploading/categorising a handful of images, plus removing the copyright claims associated with Fossik on the basis that they had already been answered offsite (we don't know the contents of this answer but they could easily have been a denial that he had anything to do with them. There is no evidence that he is regularly checking his talk pages - the last time he responded to anyone there was in 2019, which was a polite note of thanks.
Normanlamont, it again seems telling that the PDF document is signed by Fossik OU - a company now in liquidation - on his behalf, rather than by him; and that their only claims of authorisation to act on Mr Iliff's behalf include a badly-spelled single sentence in which they spell his own surname incorrectly ('David Illif is out client').
I would also like to draw your attention to this. 'Fossick Pictures' is mentioned as 'an account has spammed a number of Commons photographers offering to act as an agent pursuing copyright claims against commercial users' and has been banned and blocked from Commons. This adds evidence to the idea that Fossick Pictures is the guilty party here, and that they have a familiarity with who the most active Commons photographers are, since they were messaging numerous Commons photographers to harass them (and probably which of them are no longer regularly active and can easily be exploited).
I believe the evidence strongly suggests that this is a scam, rather than that a respected and long-standing user with no record of bans, blocks or uncivil behaviour has suddenly become a copyright troll. Pixsy appears to have a very dubious business model and to accept very low or no standards of identity verification, and it seems to me that if they are willing to accept a PDF document signed by a third-party company in liquidation as proof of standing to act on someone's behalf, then any Commons photographer using his/her real name is likely vulnerable to similar frivolous use of their creative property.
This has surely been very distressing for the people harassed with copyright claims, but I also think the 'ban/delete now, ask questions later' attitude has gone way too far. Cmao20 (talk) 20:10, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for that, it's really interesting. So it's possible that someone using the Fossik name has set up the Pixsy account and could be raking it in, and Mr Iliff doesn't even know? Normanlamont (talk) 20:16, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I left an inquiry on David's English Wikipedia talk page just now asking him to respond on-wiki. Nosferattus (talk) 20:18, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Looking further up his page there's this:
Diliff is no longer active here, and generally does not respond to requests. Attribution is a licensing requirement for all of Diliff's photographs that you can find here, and if you re-use an image without attribution you will be in breach of the licence and will be infringing the photographer's copyright. MichaelMaggs (talk) 10:53, 20 April 2023 (UTC) Normanlamont (talk) 19:22, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Whatever people pay a Pixsy claim, whether out of immediate fear or after months of grinding down, or after court procedures, Pixsy, I believe get 50%. Normanlamont (talk) 20:29, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
If this is as dubious as described above there will be no court cases. They just ask for the money but if they do not get it they will do nothing because they would likely loose the process or even get trouble because of false legal threats. GPSLeo (talk) 20:44, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It's not dubious: The most likely explanation is that when Fossick/Tom Corser was active on Commons, they contacted David and offered to pursue copyright claims on David's behalf for a cut of the money. If this was all a scam, David would have said so in response to the numerous inquiries about this on his English Wikipedia talk page, some of which are still sitting their unanswered after several years and offer no means of contact off-wiki. Nosferattus (talk) 21:00, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
You probably know this already but there's a Wikipedia 'email this user' page for him. He's also on Flickr and Facebook. Normanlamont (talk) 21:09, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Here's the document in which Pixsy say Mr Iliff authorise them. It gives part of his address, but is signed by Fossik. Normanlamont (talk) 21:17, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Just to clarify, Tom Corser isn't the director of Fossik, he's the director of Owrek about whom I know nothing except Pixsy says they're the copyright holder for this particular image. Normanlamont (talk) 21:19, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I wonder if this information will help you ascertain more about the authorisation (or not) of Pixsy by Mr Iliff. My Pixsy document as I said above listed the copyright owner as being 'Owrek Ltd'
Owrek has one director, a Mr Tom Corser. When I googled his name, it came up with a Tom Corser who's a Wikimedia contributing photographer.
If this is just muddying the water I apologise, but it does suggest some connection. Normanlamont (talk) 20:47, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It looks like Tom Corser was likely also a copyleft troll: Notice the absurd restriction "This photo may be reproduced at up to 1024 x 768" and the extremely lengthy attribution requirement. According to [7] Tom Corser is the only shareholder of Fossick OÜ. Nosferattus (talk) 22:41, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Ah - I never made the Corser-Fossick connection! Normanlamont (talk) 09:58, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Cmao20, Yann, Jmabel, and Enyavar: I just heard back from YOTI Sign support and they confirmed that the digital signature on is legitimate. If you want to ask them yourself, it's Document ID: ffc8a8af-55f3-4460-8c5b-d5aea8fd8906, Signing Request ID: 94fd9793-51fe-4c17-9892-4f51465ffe80. So this is not a scam. Diliff is, in fact, responsible for all the incidents of copyleft trolling documented by Normanlamont. And according to Normanlamont's research, Diliff appears to be ignoring people who complain about it rather than actually responding to them off-wiki. Has anyone here tried to reach Diliff off-wiki? He has not responded to my inquiries on his talk page. Nosferattus (talk) 15:07, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

  •  Question Could somebody with technical knowledge on digital signing please explain what exactly this confirmation means? I mean, how does YOTI Sign know that the person who made the signing request is identical with the David Iliff who has created the photographs? Did they see him in person and checked his passport or at least some kind of digital ID issued by some government? Just asking … – Aristeas (talk) 16:25, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  • In my experience digital signing companies typically require sending a photograph of a government-issued ID. Regardless, if anyone still doubts that Diliff is responsible, please email him or contact him on Facebook and just ask him to respond here. I've already been accused of acting inappropriately regarding Diliff at Commons:Administrators' noticeboard/User problems#User:Nosferattus, so I will not be contacting him off-wiki, lest it be regarded as harassment. But I encourage others to reach out to him for comment. Maybe he can just jump in here and say "Sorry, it won't happen again." in which case we can put it all behind us and move on. Without such assurance from Diliff, however, I think we need to assume that this is going to continue and take appropriate actions. Nosferattus (talk) 17:25, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  • If YOTI and Co. sign a document just on the base of a photograph of a government-issued ID, this is a very weak proof. Faking a real passport etc. is very difficult, but faking a photograph of it is easy; even I could fake a photo of a German passport with an arbitray name and photo in about an hour. If signing companies work on such a weak base, we cannot take them serious and nobody should do that. I would happily take the case to court if a company sues me just on base of such a weak ID proof and does not readily provide more serious documents … And even if a real David Iliff gave them their passport, how should we know that this David Iliff is the one who took the photographs? I have a rather rare first name, nevertheless I know that there are at least 3 persons in Germany who share my first name and surname; there are probably more. If signing relies just on passports etc., even worse: on photos of such documents, every single one of us could claim to be the author of every work of every other one. – Aristeas (talk) 06:36, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    • David Iliff, the one with an account here, has had plenty of time to complain if someone is suing on his supposed behalf without authority to do so, and has been communicated with enough here that it is unimaginable that he is unaware of the situation. - Jmabel ! talk 08:31, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
      Thing is, if David’s identity was forged, he would have dealt with it by now!
      I’m someone who believes that re-users need to correctly attribute and when they don’t (after contacting them in forming how CC licenses works), sure take further steps but don’t change excessive amounts! Bidgee (talk) 08:44, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    I think that YOTI's security standards may deserve more credit, since the platform is used across the UK (e.g. to pick-up Post Office parcels and to buy cigarettes at convenience stores, [8]). While it's certainly conceivable that David has nothing to do with this situation, for that to be true all of these things would also need to be true: YOTI's digital signature is false; and despite the multiple contact attempts, David is not yet aware of this situation; and the deleted inquiries Bidgee mentioned above were in fact addressed off-wiki. Julesvernex2 (talk) 08:53, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Nosferattus: Please see Commons:Deletion requests/Files uploaded by Diliff.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 15:43, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Why so hasty, friends? We are still discussing here and far from a consensus. Right now we have to understand and evaluate the newest piece of evidence provided by Nosferattus above. Why do you already start a deletion request? This only means a useless duplication of the discussion. – Aristeas (talk) 16:36, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Aristeas: I was convinced.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 21:45, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jeff G. And just because you were convinced you rush to open a deletion request, slapping all participants of this dicussion in the face, telling us that this discussion and our opinions are not important anymore, just because you were convinced? You know that this could be perceived as a very egocentric and impolite behaviour, don’t you? Best, – Aristeas (talk) 06:25, 3 April 2024 (UTC) — Sorry if my previous comment is impolite, too. It was not my intention to insult you and I apologize if the comment had that effect. But I was really astonished at this behaviour which would be comprehensible from a newbie but is astonishing from a very experienced contributor and administrator. – Aristeas (talk) 06:45, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
On the DR, several of us have said that the DR needs to be kept open at least a month to allow David time to come forward and to allow sufficient time for evidence and discussion. I see nothing at all wrong with a DR moving forward simultaneously with this discussion as long as we allow enough time as not to cut short this discussion. And deletion is never truly permanent. If it were somehow to reach a wrong conclusion, it would still be reversible. - Jmabel ! talk 08:34, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The DR notice on each of the uploads is a warning to any potential re-users, who would’ve otherwise not have known. Bidgee (talk) 08:45, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Aristeas I answered your question. I personally was convinced after reading this section that creation of the DR needed to happen to protect our reusers, as the problem had been going on for months (if not years), and Diliff has done nothing about the claims but delete them from his user talk page and profit. I checked that creating the DR hadn't happened already. I had the VFC tool in my tool box, and I knew how to use it to create the DR. So I took the initiative to be bold and created the DR 15:38, 2 April 2024 (UTC), posting above five minutes later when I was sure the process had finished. I'm sorry if you were offended by the timing.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 10:28, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I agree that this DR is a bit premature, and there are other solutions that deleting these. I would support 1. Blocking Diliff unless he provides evidence that this inacceptable behaviour stopped. 2. Add a big red warning on each file description page informing reusers of the potential issues. Yann (talk) 10:38, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jeff G. Thank you! @Yann: Yes, that would be a simple, effective and fair solution; I would be happy to help with adding the warnings on the file description pages, if necessary. @All: Could we please discuss solutions like this one first before going right to deletion requests? – Aristeas (talk) 11:35, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Aristeas: You're welcome!   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 08:29, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Yann: blocking will accomplish nothing. It will make it more difficult to communicate with him, and will still leave these files out there as a honeypot: he can sue just as easily if he is blocked. If he does not address the matter, I would support a topic ban from uploading photos, but would oppose a block.
Again, the desired outcome is for him to stop bringing aggressive legal action against naive reusers.
I don't think the "big red warning" would help. What is currently on the pages in question is actually pretty clear, but some people just don't look, or they fail to notice that one image they are using has a different license from another. - Jmabel ! talk 12:21, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Two observations from my point of view as a user:
- if nine people apart from myself actually reported the problems they had and tried to contact Mr Iliff, how many more people may have paid up out of fear, or just be living in fear of being taken to court? It's only because I investigated a lot that I became reassured I'm not likely to be bankrupted by this, but lots of other users will have been affected. Not that you have any responsibility for that or Pixsy, but the wider context is important when approaching the photographer
- so I'd much rather Mr Iliff agreed to call off Pixsy's existing cases being chased on his behalf and kept his excellent photos on Wikipedia than lose them; I don't know if I'm the right one to try to contact him but let's hope someone can persuade him on behalf of Pixsy's victims. Normanlamont (talk) 18:05, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
There are more than nine if you look at the talk page history. I imagine this has affected hundreds of reusers, but only Diliff knows for sure. I also hope someone will successfully contact him and convince him to join the discussion. Nosferattus (talk) 18:29, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Has anyone tried and managed to make contact with David Iliff? Normanlamont (talk) 09:45, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

BTW. It seems that some of Diliffs pictures were made with support by Wikimedia UK, meaning that the movement sponsored the production of these images. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 19:59, 2 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

This adds a layer of complexity to this issue. Wilfredor (talk) 23:29, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Suggestions to make license obligations clearer[edit]

I hope nobody minds me separating this content to its own section. Feel free to revert if so. — Rhododendrites talk14:34, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I would be surprised if the company were acting without Diliff's consent. More likely is Diliff said "ok" not realizing the implications (that the company would target not just large and/or for-profit businesses but absolutely anyone). The problem, as I alluded to above, is that the only options for a Commons photographer who cares about proper attribution/usage/licensing are (a) give up all hope, (b) spend all your time looking for violations and pleading with them to follow the terms of the license, or (c) hire an attack dog company like these. There is no such thing as (d) have a company send out letters pleading with people who violate the terms of the license to make a correction and only then take action if they fail to address the issue. This is why I was saying the best fix is perhaps on our end, to improve the interface to make it harder to download anything bigger than a thumbnail without being aware of the license terms. To those who have received letters demanding money, what sort of thing would've made it clearer to understand the terms of using such an image? — Rhododendrites talk21:25, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
If you only target the large reusers and clear license violations by sending a first friendly message and then if they do not act by sending a bill is not that complicated or time consuming (if they are in the same juristiction as you are). Automated crawlers and companies like these are only needed if you want to abuse this. GPSLeo (talk) 21:52, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I totally agree with Rhododendrites on this one. I tried it the friendly way, but about half of the people did not even bother to respond and, of course, many of these are not within my jurisdiction. Someone whom I told about a site that just copied a lot of my images without attribution and which also infringed their copyright told me to go with option (c), which worked for them. I decided against this, mostly because I did not want them to accidentally harass someone who used my photos with my permission, but with a somewhat different attribution which I had allowed. At the moment, I am pretty close to option (a). But my photos are not even closely as good as Diliff's. --Robert Flogaus-Faust (talk) 14:48, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
is not that complicated or time consuming - searching the web every day, finding all of the reusers, determining which are large, determining which are clear violations, figuring out who to contact, sending a message, engaging with replies, and then hiring a lawyer to initiate a case ... is complicated. That's the point. Either you spend your life doing this in order to see it done in an ethical way, ignore all violations completely, or have an agent that does all the legwork but probably won't act ethically. Those are the practical options. When I've stumbled upon violations with my work, I usually don't bother doing anything. Sometimes I'll tweet or email, but then either they comply or ignore me and there's no next step. Part of that is because my motivations for being here are different, but part of it is because there's no easy + ethical way to do anything. — Rhododendrites talk15:33, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
You hit the nail on the head. I have no time or resources to dedicate to this personally, and there is no mechanism to enforce copyright on the internet without resorting to enlisting the help of companies who do have the resources but perhaps not the nuance to fairly differentiate various categories of misuse. And then there is the argument that even if a misuse, after thorough investigation, falls into the 'minor' category, how do you recoup the money spent to reach that conclusion? There is a reasonable argument IMO that you should be able to at least recover those costs, particularly given it has only occurred because of a lack of attention/respect for the licensing and for the copyright holder. It's certainly not my wish to hound minor misusers or extract disproportional fees from them, but I simply don't have the ability to solve the problem better in a way that still protects my rights as a professional photographer. Diliff (talk) 00:01, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
'To those who have received letters demanding money, what sort of thing would've made it clearer to understand the terms of using such an image?' I think that's a really good question; as an 'offender' who had always attributed photos before but was careless this time, I wonder whether just being asked to give your email address and the name of the site you were using the photo on, and being told that you may be contacted if you haven't given attribution, may help? Also I see now that in Google Search if you search for images and filter by Creative Commons there's a flash on mousing over the image that says 'licensable'. I'm fairly sure that wasn't there when I used that image, although I could be wrong. I think asking Google to offer two filters - public domain and attribution required might help as many people think Creative Commons just means free.
IMO the problem with the likes of Pixsy isn't that they tell you you've used an image without attribution, it's that they demand a huge fee, out of proportion to the offence, based on a guess at what the image would cost if privately purchased, and that they actively discourage you from simply adding the attribution by saying you have to pay for the period during which you've infringed the copyright. But even if Pixsy were to reform its practices, which is unlikely, there are dozens of similar outfits operating the same way. Normanlamont (talk) 16:45, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It is complicated and time consuming, even with people who are responsive. I once opened an aviation magazine to discover a three-page spread of my images, none correctly attributed, and most attributed to someone else altogether. I emailed the publisher, emphasizing that I was delighted that they found my work useful, that I was not shaking them down, and that I uploaded them because I wanted other people to be able to use the images. But I emphasized that correct attribution was obligatory, and that the next person might not be so understanding. They were very nice about it (albeit worried), but I felt like they still weren't very clear on the concept. I was also concerned that someone else might have been passing off my images as theirs, but the haphazard attribution (some were attributed to me, but not per CC) didn't make it clear whether that was a valid concern. Acroterion (talk) 12:16, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
And in the early days of my image misuse, that was my initial approach and reaction too. But then I saw it happening all-too-often and in far more egregious situations, and pursuing the cases personally was a waste of time (Apple once used one of my photos in a marketing video for a new feature in MacOS, and ignored all of my communication), as most commercial users simply ignore requests from individuals because they take the view that if it were serious threat, it would be coming via litigation from a legal agent. Unfortunately, just as it is in many other aspects of law, the only time many of us come anywhere close to legal justice is when there are serious threats made. I wish it wasn't that way. Diliff (talk) 00:01, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
What I've experienced is nothing close to that, but then I haven't made my living from photography. I've been approached by ethical publishers who have asked if they can use my images. The most I've received for that is a book with correctly attributed images, but I wasn't expecting it to help pay the mortgage. I'm not comfortable with the idea of monetizing images that I'd previously released under a CC license, but I'd not be indifferent to Apple scraping images for their own use either. I think the issues involve scale and intent - Apple versus a naive reuse. That doesn't make a difference for an agent who is going after a cut of settlements, but I think it argues for care in choosing an agent who appropriately sifts such use.
All that said, what do you suggest to prevent continued incidents going forward? I've suggested a very obvious notice on all images you've uploaded that amounts to "use at your peril." Acroterion (talk) 01:16, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you @Diliff for giving your perspective. Could I ask you please how your involvement with Pixsy works? How much information do you get about the infringements and claims, whether the site actually is commercial, whether a takedown order was given, any negotiation offered? Normanlamont (talk) 10:02, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Also, and I realise this would probably be a massive project for Wikimedia, to tell photographers that CC2 and CC3 are being phased out and everyone should use CC4; after the transition date any not 'converted' would be removed or labeled public domain. I don't know if this is feasible, but just seems like an option. Normanlamont (talk) 16:50, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Change the ToS so anyone who uploads a file after some date agrees to give users a chance to cure.
Put black box warnings on non-CC4 file pages.
Add license metadata to all files that do not have it. It won't help print publishers, but the metadata may satisfy CC license requirements for web publishers.
Glrx (talk) 18:07, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
CC2 and CC3 are not being phased out, CC just strongly recommends the use of CC4. There is also no way CC2 and CC3 can be converted to CC4 or PD.
I do like the ToS idea. Bidgee (talk) 19:32, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
CC2 and 3 are not being phased out - that was my point. As a naive user I wondered why they couldn't be phased out if CC strongly recommends CC4. Quite prepared to be told it's impossible but just asking! Normanlamont (talk) 20:18, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
IMO, you could add a ToS but it would have no effect on the Creative Commons licensing, and a copyright owner could still legally and rightfully pursue misusers for license breaches regardless of what they agreed to in the ToS, as the ToS would not be legally binding. To have any real effect, the Creative Commons license terms would need to be amended and as has been discussed above, would not be retrospective on any existing images already published on other CC versions. Diliff (talk) 00:25, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The ToU already says how contributed text may be attributed [9]. It's my understanding that this was added based on the WMF's lawyers views that it most likely binds anyone who contributes their own text to these terms and so they could not pursue action if some re-user complies with the attribution specified by the ToU that the contributor agreed to when they contributed. Although I doubt it's ever been tested in court so we likely do not know for sure if a court would rule this way. Also even if court doesn't agree, potentially the WMF could pursue action against anyone who agreed to the terms but then violate it given the harms their actions are causing the the good name of the Wikimedia Movement etc, although I'm fairly sure they never would. Still it is a risk anyone who does want to violate the ToU would need to consider. In any case, if some editor did put demand on their userpage or whatever for some other attribution terms which are beyond what the ToU says is acceptable, their would likely be site banned probably even eventually WMF banned because they're in violation of the ToU. So they could no longer make problematic contributions; and we might even delete their contributions made in violation of the ToU. So while this wouldn't affect any contributions before the ToU was made, if we did decide to add something the ToU we'd surely apply the same standard. Any contributor who violated the ToU by demanding some additional terms or attribution beyond what the ToU says on new uploads from the point the new ToU was implemented would be site banned and their new uploads deleted. We'd still need to consider how to handle imports, and older media uploaded before the new ToU. Most likely we'd generally allow them but perhaps with strong warnings. Nil Einne (talk) 09:47, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
In cases like this one, I don't think it is outrageous to re-upload all images in question with a watermark. I am not talking about destructive watermarks that run across the picture, but an unobtrusive notice at the bottom of the image, in legible font that show the license text as required by the owner of the rights. A re-user who cuts away that notice or makes it unreadable in some way, then has no grounds to complain later. Given the size of the images here, such a notice will not be an entire box like here, just a rather small white line that includes the credit text, below the image proper. --Enyavar (talk) 14:09, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
If Dillif is going to continue this pattern of behaviour, then there needs to be clear warnings on all his images that lack of/incorrect attribution could lead to legal action. Hemiauchenia (talk) 16:11, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The subsection below asks the followup question to this: what pattern of behavior is it that is allowed/disallowed here? How is it defined? Lack of/incorrect attribution could lead to legal action for any copyrighted image. This subsection is about how to make those obligations clearer in general, not just for Diliff. He's not the first and won't be the last photographer to actually pursue damages for violations of licenses we have decided we will host. If we want to set limits on how/when photographers can actually enforce CC licenses we support, we need to be clearer about that up front. Diliff is a rare case for another reason -- being someone who is formerly active in our communities rather than someone simply using Commons as part of a business plan. As such, my hope is that we can find a workable solution: to upgrade his licenses to CC4, which has a built in 30-day window to fix attribution problems before legal action can be taken. Maybe it's just the older licenses we need to think about warnings for in general. — Rhododendrites talk16:58, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Rhododendrites, you shared that super helpful article by the creator of the CC license, and how CC4 is better than CC3. Thanks for that, it was an eyeopener. I agree on your suggestion: re-licensing seems the best option for everyone in the community, including reusers.
So in case that this is not already a project that people are working on: We first need a help page that explains the concept of "copyleft trolling" to unsuspecting users (who will most likely only find it after getting stung, but better than no landing page at all) and where people can also go to alert the community about those who do use trolling tactics. Those specific users we then need to convince of switching to CC4 (they may continue engaging with those firms, but with the 30 days grace period observed, I don't see dramatic moral/ethical issues). Those authors/users who we cannot convince of switching and who still file lawsuits, should in my opinion accept forced watermarks, so that people are given proper warning. Best, --Enyavar (talk) 17:28, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Agreed, upgrading to CC4 seems like a good balance between the needs of the reusers (who can benefit from the 30 day grace period), those of the photographer (who can pursue legal action after those 30 days), and those of other uploaders (who may perceive the lack of watermarks in their images as an implied invitation for unattributed usage). Diliff, do you see an issue with converting your Wiki Commons images to CC4? Julesvernex2 (talk) 17:50, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It can't really be "clearer" if reusers don't attribute images at all. The same pattern at uploads inevitably leads to blocks at Commons, so why should it be ok for reusers? Maybe we should limit hotlinking for such reusers and block them from Wikimedia sites. Enhancing999 (talk) 08:52, 6 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

What kind of copyright enforcement is allowed by Commons?[edit]

If we're going to have rules for how copyright owners can enforce the licenses that Commons supports, we should have that documented somewhere as an official policy/guideline. Based on this conversation, some users here have clear ideas about what is/isn't acceptable in trying to enforce the licenses we hold. If Commons is going to impose rules on uploaders that are stricter than the law and stricter than the CC licenses we allow, we need to say that somewhere. IMO this is very tricky business. If we act as though we have clear rules but they're not actually stated anywhere, we risk people misusing Commons, we risk people using images that will no longer be available in the future, and all sorts of other repercussions. This sort of "I know 'copyleft trolling' when I see it" doesn't make for particularly good policy. — Rhododendrites talk14:32, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

A very good point. We need an official policy for this, or at least a best practice description. And it should be mentioned and linked on the upload page as soon/as long as the user has selected any CC license (we can hide it when the user has selected PD/CC-0). – Aristeas (talk) 15:25, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Perhaps state that CC4 is the default licence you should use, unless you have good reason not to. And a statement that in Commons view lack of correct attribution does not entitle one to claim financial penalties against the defaulter. Pixsy's rationale is that since you have breached the CC2 licence, the photographer is entitled to a fee which they are free to set as they like. Sorry for wading in among the experts here but I'm trying to present an ordinary user's viewpoint. This might not deter the hardcore trolls, but it would present a policy which most contributors would read. Normanlamont (talk) 15:37, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I disagree with "And a statement that in Commons view lack of correct attribution does not entitle one to claim financial penalties against the defaulter." If you want that position, then Commons should just host Public Domain materials. Commons hosts materials with free licenses, and some of those licenses require attribution. If someone does not follow the license, then they are violating the agreement. A creator should be able to enforce their copyright, and that can mean taking violators to court.
The problem is that many users are not sophisticated. I've seen many uses that fail to credit the creator or do an inadequate attribution (e.g., "Source: Wikimedia Commons" does not attribute the creator). The copyright troll exploits that lack of sophistication. We do not want unsophisticated people being hurt. The best that we can do is offer advice on attribution, provide prominent warnings, suggest users double check the licensing, add metadata, and try to obtain an opportunity to cure.
Glrx (talk) 18:10, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Agree with all of this. — Rhododendrites talk03:42, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
We should not ban copyright enforcement, we should only ban abuse of accidental license violations. We could simply make the guideline "Sending a bill to first time license violators is only allowed if they were notified on the violation and granted at least 14 days to correct the mistake." GPSLeo (talk) 19:13, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Perhaps state that CC4 is the default licence you should use, unless you have good reason not to.” Commons already has it defaulted but no policy is in place stating own works must be only uploaded as CC4 (something I would oppose).
And a statement that in Commons view lack of correct attribution does not entitle one to claim financial penalties against the defaulter.” I oppose such, if the photographer has taken reasonable steps to cure and the violator hasn’t addressed it, further action should be allowed. Bidgee (talk) 23:02, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@GPSLeo Die cc-by-sa-4.0-Lizenz (die am meisten verwendete Lizenz, und die Lizenz unter der deutlich mehr als die Hälfte der nicht-gemeinfreien Medien auf Commons publiziert sind (und der Anteil wäre noch höher, wenn nicht importierte Flickr- und YouTube-Medien unter einer älteren cc-Lizenz stünden)) gewährt eine Grace-Period von 30 Tagen. Ich finde es nicht sinnvoll (und halte es auch rechtlich nicht für möglich) diese auf 14 Tage zu verkürzen. Davon abgesehen ist es aber angemessen und notwendig, gegen Leute, dich auch nach 30 Tagen hartnäckig die Lizenz eines Mediums verletzen, vorzugehen, insbesondere zum Schutz aller, die Medien unter freien Lizenzen veröffentlichen, und zwar mit finanziellen Sanktionen.
Weiterer Hinweis: Derzeit wird am Upload-Wizard gearbeitet. Ein wesentlicher Bestandteil daran ist die Präsentation der Lizenzauswahl. Wer am Thema interessiert ist, kann sich gerne Einbringen. Irgendwo hier gibt es dazu eine Seite, auf der dem Developer-Team Rückmeldung gegeben werden kann. C.Suthorn ( - (talk) 07:13, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Ach ja: Wirklich sinnvoll wäre mal eine Aktion, Leute dazu zu motivieren, ihre alten Uploads auf die Version 4.0 der cc-Lizenzen upzudaten. C.Suthorn ( - (talk) 07:14, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
There is already a discussion about this happening at Commons:Village pump/Proposals#Prohibit copyleft trolling. Personally, I think it would behoove us to adopt guidelines similar to those used by Flickr. Let's continue the discussion there. Nosferattus (talk) 23:27, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It seems to me that Flickr's guidelines are entirely reasonable. And, yes, they call for judgement. Determining whether someone is a troll always calls for judgement. - Jmabel ! talk 07:35, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
What are Flickr's guidelines on copyright enforcement like? --SHB2000 (talk) 12:37, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply] Normanlamont (talk) 14:52, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
And what part of Pixy's rationale is factually untrue? Wikimedia Commons cannot dictate how Creative Commons licenses are enforced as it is entirely outside their sphere of influence. If Wikimedia Commons and its community aren't happy with the terms of the Creative Commons licenses in use, they shouldn't have decided to support the licenses. I find this discussion about attempting to control copyright enforcement a little crazy to be honest. The community may express its preferences and its ethical worldview with respect to an approach on licensing and copyright but how courts and lawyers handle cases is entirely independent of Wikimedia Commons policy. Diliff (talk) 00:25, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
We can not change the licenses and how they are enforced. But we can decide how community members have to act in relation to the Wikimedia Commons project. GPSLeo (talk) 06:10, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Isn't it just a recipe for disaster to not attribute images by default? Doing that at Commons inevitably leads to a block. Why should we tell reusers that it's ok to do so? Enhancing999 (talk) 12:50, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Nobody proposed that. — Rhododendrites talk13:28, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
So what is the takeaway message for reusers who do that? Enhancing999 (talk) 13:31, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Is CC4 actually a cure for the problem?[edit]

People keep talking about how CC 4.0 is a cure for the problem but is it? And what problem are we referring to? Because I've read both the licence [10] which says "For the avoidance of doubt, this Section 6(b) does not affect any right the Licensor may have to seek remedies for Your violations of this Public License." and the FAQ [11] which says "Note that you may still be liable for damages for copyright infringement for the period where you were not in compliance with the license.". All of these along with the What's New [12] and Enforcement Principles [13] seem to suggest to me CC4.0 does not in any way aim to stop enforcement over actual licence violations. Rather what it does is ensure that if someone has violated the licence, they can regain the licence if they correct the problem. This means their use from when they corrected the problem and regained the licence is now fine, but it doesn't make their historic misuse fine. It's still a violation which the copyright holder could pursue.

This seems significant here because as I understand it, in the Diliff example which lead to this, and earlier ones what normally happens is Pixsy or some other entity subcontracted by the copyright holder finds licence violations generally from incorrectly attributed content or maybe sometimes from failing to specify the licence (or provide the terms of hyperlink) and demands payment for the existing violation (retrospective licencing or whatever). Importantly, as I understand it most or all of the time, the payment isn't so that the the entity contacted can continue to use it. Perhaps sometimes that also arises but most of the time this is only significant for major company or whatever who've used the work in a way which makes it difficult for them to simply delete or update it. So isn't really our main concern here.

What we're mostly concerned about is when some poor shmuck who perhaps has a personal blog or website they're not making money from perhaps they're even losing money already due to hosting charges, made a mistake when attributing images or whatever and receives a demand for payment. They cannot get out of this by deleting or replacing the image not because they don't want to but because it doesn't help with the problem namely their earlier misuse which is what the fee is being demanded for. (I mean working out how remove the image could be a problem too, it's possible the person contacted could be a 70 year old now with dementia who made a mistake 10 years ago, who has major problems understanding what'd being demanded of them. It doesn't sound like the Pixsy etc care about such things. But that seems a rarer concern.)

So how does CC 4.0 help with the problem we're concerned about? Or have I misunderstood CC4 or what people are concerned about?

Nil Einne (talk) 10:55, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

BTW, I was a bit confused by the purpose of 30 day once I came to understood it only applied to regaining the licence rather than helping with the historic violation. But then it occured to me that the older system was quite problematic. For example, if I posted a CC image on my barely known but public website, made a typo in my hyper link or the attributed name or whatever realised it when checking the website, corrected the error in 5 minutes; as I understand the older CC I was actually SoL. I had lost the rights to reuse the CC content with my earlier mistake. So me contuining to reuse the content no matter that I seemed to be in full compliance with the licence was still a problem since I was using the materially without permission from the copyright owner.

Therefore if they ever found out I'd done something like this e.g. there was an archive somewhere, they could pursue me for using their material without permission. If I got lucky, perhaps the courts would decide my 5 minute mistake shouldn't matter, but perhaps not. I think few copyright holders are like this but it was still a problem since if someone made the mistake they'd either need to use some other work, risk being pursued in the future, or contact the copyright holder for a new licence which probably 99.9% of copyright holders would find annoying.

Even more seriously, under the old system potentially a copyright holder could email someone saying you're using my material without permission since you did not attribute properly, you needed to do XYZ as per the licence. Please pay up for your previous error, please note that this payment is exclusively to cover your earlier misuse and does not grant you any additional rights for future use.

Probably most people receiving this notice would just delete the image and move on, but some people may think, okay I've corrected that error. Except that in fact they lost the licence permanently and the copyright holder never granted them any new licence for continuing use. So the copyright holder could send an email a few years later, saying, I see you're still in violation of my copyright. Yes you might have attributed me as my licence said you should. But I DGAF, as you lost your licence from the earlier violation and I never granted you a new one. Please pay up again.

Nil Einne (talk) 10:55, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Good questions. As it happens, the person we've been citing regarding CC4 and the cure provision has a wiki account we can ping. :)
@Doctorow: one of our most accomplished wiki-photographers is fielding accusations about using Pixsy and Fossik to demand money from people who fail to follow the terms of a license. Lots of complicated politics about "the spirit of wiki", the rights of professional photographers who share images here, etc. Following this blog post, some have argued that upgrading to CC4 may be a good compromise between the rights of the photographer and the resusers. User:Nil Einne points out above what the rest of us should've noticed sooner: that the cure provision seems more about restoring rights than preventing you from being sued for violating the terms. Curious to hear what you think. — Rhododendrites talk12:49, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I sent Cory an email at exactly the same time you posted this, hopefully at least one of the pings will go through :) Julesvernex2 (talk) 13:15, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Heard back from Cory, a lawyer from Creative Commons has been looped in and will get back to us. Julesvernex2 (talk) 13:42, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Creative Commons is proposing a call with their General Counsel. I can a) take the call and get back to this group with the answers; b) take the call together with others that wish to participate; or c) hand-over the call to a lawyer and/or someone that can represent Wikimedia in an institutional capacity? In any case, they have kindly offered to address any additional questions we may have besides the 30-day grace period. Julesvernex2 (talk) 13:24, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I don't think I can take part, so let me just place additional questions to be on the safe side: let's say, I change my license like here (an upgrade from 3.0 to 4.0): 1.) Am I even allowed to do that? 2.) If yes to (1): What are the resulting changes for those who re-used the file previously (those with correct 3.0 attribution) and 3.) like (2), but for previous re-users without proper attribution? - That's it. I was pretty sure to find answers in the CC-FAQ, but didn't. Thanks for the organization, Julesvernex. --Enyavar (talk) 14:08, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
This clarification is still worth pursuing, but if updating to CC4 is a fix, this post by Diliff seems to indicate he wouldn't be willing to do so. — Rhododendrites talk16:51, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
100% updating to CC4 or at least making a rule so that anyone who uploads an artwork cant upload it 20 years later under an outdated license that allows copyleft trolls to extort people.

March 31[edit]

Double categories[edit]

Elizabeth line signage

Category:British Rail Class 345s on the Elizabeth line and Category:British Rail Class 345s of the Elizabeth line.

There are many categories such as Category:British Rail Class 345s of TfL Rail, Category:British Rail Class 345s in Elizabeth line livery and Category:British Rail Class 345s on the Elizabeth line wich in practice are all similar.Smiley.toerist (talk) 17:26, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Category:British Rail Class 345 has an overview of the "by"-categories. Enhancing999 (talk) 22:12, 31 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
There is confusion as Class 345 only runs by the operator Tfl (why it is called a BR class train type I dont understand) on the Elizabeth line wich includes the local service parts of the Great Eastern Main line and the Great Western Main line.

It would be more logical to split the Elizabeth line into 4 line categories:

I would start by renaming Category:British Rail Class 345s on the Elizabeth line to Category:British Rail Class 345s on the Elizabeth line (Abbey Wood branch), but I wait for comments first.Smiley.toerist (talk) 10:24, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

It seems to be part of a scheme for all UK. Maybe @Railwayfan2005: can help you. Enhancing999 (talk) 10:31, 1 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I must admit I'm not a great fan of these sorts of composite category, but they seem to be where Commons is at right now. Checking my spotting book, I find that the operator of the trains running on the railway known as the Elizabeth Line is just "Elizabeth Line", so confusingly the only fault I can see is Category:British Rail Class 345s of the Elizabeth line should be Category:British Rail Class 345s of Elizabeth Line. In principle photos prior to 2023 should be in Category:British Rail Class 345s of TfL Rail; TfL Rail then became Elizabeth Line. Going up the tree Category:Trains of the Elizabeth line should become Category:Trains of Elizabeth Line and Category:Trains of the Elizabeth line by line Category:Trains of Elizabeth Line by line. I can request the renamings if it helps. (Historical Note: Physical train numbering in the UK still uses the systems inherited from British Rail, so where you see British Rail Class 345 the British Rail Class bit is just qualifying the numbering system and not refering to the owners, operators or anything else. There must be other examples where numbering systems have long outlived the originator of the numbers.) Railwayfan2005 (talk) 21:52, 7 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Transport for London and previously London Transport always use "line" in their service names and signage, see image Oxyman (talk) 01:28, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 01[edit]

Help locating photo origin[edit]

I would like to upload this photo of Joe Clark which I found at ParlInfo. It states it is in the Public Domain, which is of value for the Commons. However, I have no idea when it was taken or by who. When I reached out to the Library of Parliament Canada, they told me they got the photo from an 'outside source'. Reverse searching gets me a full resolution copy, but still no author or date. Does anyone else out there by chance know anything about it or recognize this photo? Perhaps there is a better sleuth out there then me. Thanks.

April 03[edit]

Making CC BY-SA 3.x/GFDL files available under CC BY-SA 4.0[edit]

Apropos of this discussion I ask myself what I can do to make it easier to (re)use my files and photographs correctly. Some of them are still licensed under GFDL + CC BY-SA-3.0 just because this combination was the suggested default licensing when I uploaded these files. I would like to allow people to use all/most of these files under CC BY-SA 4.0, too. What is the correct way to achieve this? I do not want to remove/replace the old licenses (a) because I guess that would be problematic from a legal point of view and (b) because this would confuse people who already use one of these files under such a license. Can I just add CC BY-SA 4.0 as an additional option, preferrably by using {{self|GFDL|cc-by-sa-3.0|cc-by-sa-4.0|migration=redundant}}? Or is there a legal or technical problem when I add that additional license now? Thank you very much for your input! – Aristeas (talk) 15:42, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

If you are the owner of the copyright to a file you are free to add additional license choices, if you so choose. Your suggested wiki markup is fine. You're probably aware, but for clarity, the reverse is not true. The Creative Commons licenses are irrevocable, you can't, for example, tell a user who previously obtained your file under the terms of CC BY-SA-3.0 that if they want to continue using it they must use it under the terms of CC BY-SA 4.0. —RP88 (talk) 16:38, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
That’s great. Thank you very much for your input, RP88! Yes, I am aware that CC licenses are irrevocable (this is what my loose wording “would be problematic from a legal point of view” wanted to say). – I posted the question here because it was stimulated by the aforementioned VP discussion and I thought that it would be of interest also for other contributors who still have GFDL + CC BY-SA-3.0 or even CC BY-SA-2.x files; sorry if my wording was too vague and personal. Best, – Aristeas (talk) 19:01, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Aristeas: I use the following: I agree to [[w:Wikipedia:Multi-licensing|multi-license]] all my contributions, with the exception of my user pages (which are licensed under the [[w:GNU Free Documentation License|GFDL]] 1.2 only), as described below along with all future CC-BY-SA licenses: :::{{self|GFDL|Cc-by-sa-4.0,3.0,2.5,2.0,1.0|migration=redundant}}   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 23:42, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jeff G.: That’s another excellent solution, thank you very much! So people can choose which solution fits them better.
BTW, I have learned that it is even possible to write {{self|GFDL|cc-by-sa-all}}. This is useful if somebody wants to publish a file explicitly under any CC BY-SA license. Personally I feel a bit uncomfortable about this because it seems a bit odd to me to allow the use even of not-yet-existing licenses; therefore I would prefer Jeff’s code which explicitly mentions the versions of the license. But if one really wants any CC BY-SA license, cc-by-sa-all is the shortest and most general solution.
As a sidenote, Jeff’s code example shows that my lengthy {{self|GFDL|cc-by-sa-3.0|cc-by-sa-4.0|migration=redundant}} can be abbreviated to {{self|GFDL|cc-by-sa-4.0,3.0|migration=redundant}}. This also results in a more compact display: instead of creating a separate box for every version of CC BY-SA, the template geneates a single box which mentions all versions. Best, – Aristeas (talk) 09:34, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Aristeas: You're welcome!   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 09:42, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 04[edit]

POV image description[edit]

A talk page entry at Wikipedia here brings up an issue with a POV image description. Any ideas what to do about this would be appreciated, thank you. IOHANNVSVERVS (talk) 07:31, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I'm just passing through at the moment, but at the very least add {{Fact disputed}}. I believe that the word "terrorists" and its Hebrew equivalent should be removed from that page entirely. I have rarely seen a less appropriate description anywhere. (Probably more to be done than that, but I'm on my way out a door.) - Jmabel ! talk 07:40, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I've now added a "fact disputed" tag with the note, "It should be needless to say that the IDF's characterization of the hospital as a "terror headquarters" is contentious at best, and the notion that everyone killed or arrested was terrorist is absurd." - Jmabel ! talk 08:53, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
remove that bullshit completely and replace it with the description of whats in the image which in this case is the name of the said Hospital and if they persist, then we no longer accept images from them at all. Just because the image is released freely doesn't mean we should use it if its used for their own personal propaganda...we now need to check every images uploaded from that site to see if the description for every image uploaded isn't more propaganda. Wikipedia is supposed to be neutral (even though we aren't but we need to continue with that "facade" or we will no longer be recognized as a neutral and reliable source).... Stemoc 12:58, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for looking into this. The issue extends to the rest of the files in Category:Operation Local Surgery, with the same phrasing used on those twelve files. Richard Nevell (talk) 17:23, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I think this is once more a case showing why we should make "original description/title" like it is used in {{BArch-image}} a standard value of the general {{Information}} template. GPSLeo (talk) 17:48, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
yes. i just wanted to raise this problem.
{{Information}} and com:sdc should have dedicated fields for original accompanying texts provided by the creators of the files.
all texts should be preserved as is. RZuo (talk) 19:10, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Commons does have a NPOV policy, which includes neutrality of description should be aimed at wherever possible. There are a few ways to do so: remove the contentious claims or attribute the claims to the IDF. In this case, I'd be inclined to remove the claims, since they are only there for context and do not actually describe anything in the image itself. In fact, nothing in the description describes the actual image. I see what looks like a tank and a damaged medical building. Oddly, I can't find an image oF Shifa Hospital that looks like that (the curved facade, etc.) -- are we certain that's what's in the frame? There's no caption in the source document. Also, we should probably ping the uploader, MathKnight. — Rhododendrites talk19:31, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
noticed he has been pushing this propaganda (for a better word) for a while now even making such claims on other wikis including enwiki and i can see he is a sysop on the Hebrew wiki thus his bias. I remember we banned a few Russian posters last year when they were doing the exact same thing during the Ukraine-Russia conflict by pushing the Russian agenda and yes a lot of those images added by him have the same biased description. This needs to be fixed ASAP IMO and i generally don't care what the VRT ticket allows because we need to uphold our own NPOV policy first. I'm in favour of blacklisting that website if every description listed on their images is blatant propaganda and bullshit... Stemoc 22:06, 4 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
since the user is still actively editing hebrew wiki and made edits to enwiki even after this discussion was brought up and hasn't posted here, one can assume he doesn't care...I propose we delete the description of every image related to this current war, english and hebrew and maybe start a discussion on blacklisting the IDF website and removing all their images from commons. We can't have 2 standards for when russian editors do this and another set for Israeli ones and also ban MathKnight from commons. We cannot have propaganda pushing people actively promoting disinformation on commons as images here get used across wikimedia wikis... Stemoc 00:43, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Stemoc: I'm about halfway with you. No reason not to accept the images, we can just rewrite titles and descriptions.
He's not required to respond to a discussion on the Village pump, but you can start one at COM:AN/U and notify him accordingly. If he won't agree there to stop POV-pushing then, yes, some sanction is in order (at least a topic ban, maybe more). - Jmabel ! talk 13:59, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Rhododendrites: regarding the building with curved façade, it seems to be located just across the road (31.5236°N, 34.4421°E), but is itself probably not part of the hospital. The vehicle and shed in the foreground do seem to be situated on the hospital grounds. I've added the camera coordinates to the file page as accurately as I could deduce from aerial imagery. --HyperGaruda (talk) 07:09, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
File:Operation-Local-Surgery 2024-03-30 at 18-11-25.jpg also - and several others. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 21:15, 5 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I feel like COM:AN is a more suitable avenue to discuss this than the Village Pump. ReneeWrites (talk) 12:29, 6 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
For the record, we have many descriptions with the Russian propaganda e.g. here. I remember that there were some discussions but I cannot recall the outcome. — Draceane talkcontrib. 21:08, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Possible way to address this[edit]

I think those two edits of mine should sufficiently address the problem, and would suggest doing the same on other files with similar issues (Israeli, Russian, whatever). - Jmabel ! talk 14:40, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I prefer the latter, labelling the "Original description" as such. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:20, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I think the image descriptions should only pertain to what they show. It's an armored vehicle in front of the ruins of a destroyed hospital. You could also mention the Al-Shifa raid the vehicle was involved in, resulting in the ruined hospital. There are no 200 deaths and 500 arrests in that image (numbers that aren't even independently verified).
I'm also iffy on letting the non-NPOV description stand even if it's with a disclaimer; placing undue value on the original uploader's description is not something we do in any other area of Commons, and if we treat this as if it's official policy it's one that's very easy to abuse. ReneeWrites (talk) 18:27, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I just added a disclaimer to all images in that category, pending a better description. Yann (talk) 18:50, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 08[edit]

Christian religious art question[edit]

Can anyone work out what scenes are represented by the two panels here? The full predella might provide useful context, though I doubt it. - Jmabel ! talk 14:54, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Also (tangentially related) I'm sure someone could do a better job than I of adding additional categories to the images in Category:Altarpiece of the Corpus Christi (Vallbona de les Monges), related to what is represented in each panel. - Jmabel ! talk 20:27, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

These are two Eucharistic miracles for which there are numerous versions from the Middle Ages. In both cases, an individual steals a consecrated host to enhance their honey production/fishing. Each time, a miracle occurs: the bees build a church of wax around the host/the fish bring back the host to the priest. Identifying the saint depicted would provide further information. Ayack (talk) 22:02, 8 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Page 84-86 of this document and this website provide some more background. Category:Host desecration or its subcategories seem appropriate. --HyperGaruda (talk) 09:27, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@HyperGaruda: thank you, Category:Host desecration is exactly what I was not finding. It is buried so far from Category:Eucharist that I didn't turn it up. - Jmabel ! talk 14:54, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 09[edit]

Discussion about new tool for detecting logos[edit]

We're having a discussion at the Technical Village Pump about a new tool for detecting logos. Our intention is for you to discuss if it could be of use for the community and then, if consensus is reached, to integrate the tool in UploadWizard, in a way that would be beneficial for moderation workflow. If you're interested in the topic, please have your say! Sannita (WMF) (talk) 10:20, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Potential identification issue with photos from[edit]

From what I'm aware, many pictures of species from James Lindsey's Ecology of Commanster website were uploaded to Commons way back in 2007-2009 or so. These are all listed in the category Category:Pictures by James Lindsey (as well as Category:Nature of Commanster and its subcategories). However, I've been discovering over the last few months that with regards to insects at least, at least some of them in Lindsey's photos have been misidentified: it turns out that Lindsey's website now gives different identifications for these insects, but for the most part they have not been updated on Commons correspondingly. So far that I've seen, some of the new IDs for Lindsey's photos are consistent with other photos ID'd as the same species on external websites and other photos uploaded to Commons, so they seem to be correct as far as I can tell.

Here are some examples of what I'm talking about:

In each case, I found the website's current ID for each insect by simply reverse-searching the images on Google, clicking "Find image source", and looking for a web page that has the same image if its available.

A few other notes I should make here:

  • Because these images are so old, they not only may be the oldest images available on Commons for many species, but they have also often been used as representative images for these species in Wikipedia (regardless of language), Wikidata and Wikispecies. They also may be representative images for genera, subfamilies, families, etc.
  • I believe this issue probably applies to far more than just the dozen or so insects I've spotted misidentifications in so far: the website has a Caveat page warning about identification errors, particularly for arthropods and fungi. This means that the IDs given by Lindsey for some groups of organisms are not reliable, and therefore many of his images of those groups uploaded to Commons could have wrong IDs and need renaming.
  • The Category:Pictures by James Lindsey category includes 5,805 images total, which is far too much for one user alone to sift through.

So, I need other users to help double check photos from uploaded to Commons, correct them if needed, and also fix references to them across Wikimedia. Like Lindsey himself, I don't have any expertise in any field of biology either, not even in insects particularly (despite how often I edit pages to do with them). Monster Iestyn (talk) 16:11, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Monster Iestyn: You might want to cross-post at en:Wikipedia:WikiProject Insects. - Jmabel ! talk 17:57, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel: Thanks for the suggestion. While I did originally make this with insects in mind, half way into writing the start of this discussion I started wondering if this issue goes beyond insects to other arthropods and maybe even plants/fungi, since the photos from Lindsey's site also includes those. Monster Iestyn (talk) 18:26, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Monster Iestyn: I imagine that for each, there is some relevant WikiProject. - Jmabel ! talk 18:30, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel: There, cross-posted at both en:Wikipedia:WikiProject Insects and en:Wikipedia:WikiProject Tree of Life. Monster Iestyn (talk) 18:39, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Do we have a bot that could fix it? It would be easier if the images had an image number and would link directly to the source. Enhancing999 (talk) 19:34, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Enhancing999 Doesn't look like they have numbers, at least on the website. Unfortunately all of these just sourced the website's main page to my knowledge (standards for sourcing may have been different 15 years ago, I have no idea). Additionally, some of the insect photos at least don't seem to exist on the website anymore, or at least Google's reverse-search for images doesn't work as expected for them, e.g.: File:Rhaphium.elegantulum9.-.lindsey.jpg, File:Rhaphium.riparium.-.lindsey.jpg and File:Rhaphium.riparium9.-.lindsey.jpg. Monster Iestyn (talk) 19:43, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The bot would have to load each file and try to to a comparison to the ones here. Enhancing999 (talk) 19:57, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Quite a few of these photos appear as the main image on Wikidata or Wikipedia pages. Those should be our first priority. I'll see if I can throw together a script. Snowmanonahoe (talk) 20:39, 9 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Small update: I've since learned that some of these photos may also be uploaded twice but with different IDs, sometimes placing the insects in the photos in different families. For instance, File:Apteropeda.orbiculata.jpg uploaded in 2007, then was uploaded again in 2009 as File:Olibrus.flavicornis.-.lindsey.jpg (also the ID of the beetle according to [19]). Another example is that File:Crumomyia.nitida.jpg was uploaded in 2007, and was uploaded again in File:Hydrophorus.balticus.-.lindsey.jpg, but I cannot find what the website calls this fly now. In both cases, the image is also used to represent both species on Wikidata. In the case of 2007's File:Crepidodera.aurata.jpg (File:Crepidodera.aurata cropped.jpg is a cropped version) and 2009's File:Crepidodera.fulvicornis.-.lindsey.jpg however, the website now calls the species in the photo yet another name, Chaetocnema obesa, according to [20]. Monster Iestyn (talk) 01:14, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 10[edit]

Proposal affecting FoP Chile[edit]

The proposal, though not yet passed and is still being discussed heavily, may affect Commons' ability to host Chilean monuments (unsure if it would be retroactive or not). Right now, Wikimedia Chile chapter is rigorous in opposing one part of this proposal. (source1, source2)

Informally known as "Balmes law", the proposal has one part (Article 5 according to source2) which makes it mandatory the need for remuneration to artists for images of artistic works found in public spaces that have been used for profit-making or lucrative purposes. Wikimedia Chile opposes this as this will hinder Spanish Wikipedia's ability to illustrate articles of contemporary monuments of Chile. It is uncertain if this could affect architecture too, since the proposal is relatively vague.

Note that I have mentioned this in meta:Freedom of Panorama which I created. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 03:20, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

We should really just revolt at this point and allow for non-commercial licenses since that seems to be the direction a lot of countries are going in with freedom of panorama laws recently. Otherwise we are needlessly screwing ourselves out of hosting images from a large part of the world. --Adamant1 (talk) 03:35, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Adamant1 unsure if that will sit well with many of the peeps within Wikimedia Foundation (I'll ping here @Sannita (WMF): who started major FoP discourse recently, for their inputs). It will be a major overhaul of the policies of both Wikimedia Commons and Wikimedia Foundation. The policies are anchored on the Definition of Free Cultural Works (which essentially prohibits non-commercial content).
Unless, WMF will make a statement about the purported failure of free culture and finally embrace non-commercial licenses like CC-BY-NC-ND and CC-BY-NC. One more far-reaching consequence of this overhaul is to finally force Creative Commons organization that both CC-BY and CC-BY-SA should be invalid in images of all modern architecture and public monuments of no-FoP countries, and that only the NC-type licenses must be used for that. This means, CC licenses can be revoked for images that show these public landmarks of these countries. All of these is assuming we will start embracing non-commercial content. Sounds convincing to stop deletion requests, but may be detrimental to free culture missions by both Wikimedia Foundation and Creative Commons organization. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 04:12, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
At least copyrights laws of majority of post-USSR countries also prohibit mass usage of photos of copyrighted monuments, so it not only non-commercial clause which should be taken into account. --EugeneZelenko (talk) 15:03, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@EugeneZelenko ah yes. It seems one nuisance in restricted FoP laws. If the quoted text at COM:FOP Kazakhstan is correct, then it also means non-commercial images of their copyrighted monuments and buildings are also not allowed to be freely disseminated (note the conjunction "or" instead of "and", separating non-commercial condition from the main object condition). Ping @Adamant1: for attention. Also, a substantial number of countries lack FoP altogether, such as our country as of now, Burma/Myanmar, Indonesia, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, Oman, Yemen, Qatar, Kuwait, Palestine, and Afghanistan from our continent. No FoP makes legality of very wide distributions of images, regardless if there is commercial intent or not, questionable too, IMO. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 16:12, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Adamant1, I think I may not agree – for now – the possible proposal for a far-reaching policy change for both Commons as well as WMF. Embracing NC FoP and allowing NC licenses may complicate several things. This is in addition to possible conflict with the free culture movements that both WMF and CC orgs promote. It may also open up one critical question: "What is the purpose of Wikimedia Commons, if their licensing policy is now similar to Flickr and other stock media sites?" That is, assuming we are now embracing NC-type licenses. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 16:28, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
CC-BY and CC-BY-SA are not invalid for photos of structures in countries with noncommercial FoP. The photographer's license release allowing commercial use is still valid; it is merely encumbered by additional restrictions from the architect. -- King of ♥ 16:09, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@King of Hearts at least from a major critic of Wikimedia as well as most American social media sites (ADAGP of France), those two licenses are not legally compatible to French buildings and monuments. Refer to their presentation to the EU Parliament in 2015, which includes harsh litanies against Wikipedia (they do not differentiate Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons, seemingly lumping both projects as a single community). JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 16:18, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
By the way, I may want to add that there are few instances of photographers getting entangled in lawsuits against commercial reusers. Former Marine John Alli, who was the author of the photograph of the (in)famous Korean War Veterans Memorial, got dragged in the Gaylord v. United States case. Unlike US Postal Service, though, a settlement was immediately reached between the Alli and Gaylord, in which any further sales of his images would always include 10% royalty to the sculptor. (source) JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 16:37, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@King of Hearts: It is same case as Commons:Derivative works - architects/sculptors are primary creators of copyrights in this case, not phototgraphers.--EugeneZelenko (talk) 16:24, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345 and EugeneZelenko: All I'm saying is that a photographer may choose a license like CC-BY or CC-BY-SA, and it will have the same effect as CC-BY-NC or CC-BY-NC-SA respectively. In other words, I'm saying that JWilz12345's statement that "only the NC-type licenses must be used for that" is incorrect. A CC-BY or CC-BY-SA license on a noncommercial-only structure is valid in the sense that the photographer cannot sue a reuser for use in line with the CC license (no matter if the use is commercial or noncommercial), though of course the architect can sue for commercial use. -- King of ♥ 16:51, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@King of Hearts: If Diliff takes a CC-BY photo of a building with no commercial FOP and a hypothetical reuser reuses that photo for commercial purposes without attribution, both Pixsy and the architect can sue that reuser.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 17:26, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Correct, but Diliff being able to sue is due to the lack of attribution, not due to the noncommercial nature of the building. -- King of ♥ 17:29, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Adamant1: What would become of COM:LJ and Foundation:Resolution:Licensing policy?   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 16:34, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jeff G.: I don't think they would necessarily have to conflict with each other as long as we are up front about it through proper licensing templates and whatnot. Regardless, there's a difference between the project as a whole following a certain standard or philosophy and how we treat individual files. Its not like there aren't any restrictions on reuse already either. For instance attribution requirements. You could argue the same applies the instance of this being a censorship free platform but still not hosting certain that violate the law. Say I'm a person who wants to use an image of a monument as part of a school project in a country that doesn't allow for commercial usage, which would otherwise be totally fine. How are the project goals or my needs being met by Commons not allowing for non-commerical licenses? I'd argue that's probably most of the reuse on here to BTW. --Adamant1 (talk) 17:04, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Source-country copyright is actually a made-up Commons-internal rule. The WMF does not specify where content must be freely licensed (other than the US for legal reasons). So there is no reason why, from a legal and WMF policy perspective, Commons can't just be like English Wikipedia and follow only US law. -- King of ♥ 17:32, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I would support using US law only for FoP issues. That would at least allows us to have pictures of buildings and pre-1929 art worldwide, whatever is the local law. Then each project can decide to use the pictures or not. There would be nothing really new here, only an enlargement of current policies. Some projects already don't use Commons in some cases, and apply stricter rules (German language WP doesn't use Mickey pictures and films, etc.). Yann (talk) 17:53, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Yann: What US law has to do to monuments and buildings located in other countries? And also this double-edged sward - what about countries where freedom of panorama is less restrictive then in US? --EugeneZelenko (talk) 21:34, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
> And also this double-edged sward - what about countries where freedom of panorama is less restrictive then in US?
It's not actually a double-edged sword, because what Commons does now is unlawful. Commons is hosted in the US, and thus US copyright law must be respected, always. The fact that Commons allows for FOP uploads on the basis of non-US law has no real basis, legally. It's copyright infringement.
The current position of Commons on FoP in non-US countries can be summarized as follows.
  • Where the country is stricter than the US (no FoP), prohibit adding FoP images.
    • This is totally legal, but, in my opinion, a bad restriction.
  • Where the country is more lenient than the US (allows for FoP with non-building items), ignore US law and allow uploads of these items.
    • By allowing this, Commons (hosted in the US) is breaking US law.
All images that aren't free in the US cannot legally be hosted on Commons. There's no exception for "foreign freedom of panorama" in US copyright law. You seem, @EugeneZelenko, to accept the assumption that @JWilz12345 argues for — that this is a choice about whether we will be bound by the source country's law alone or US law alone.
But, as @King of Hearts and @Yann point out, this is not the choice we have. We must apply US law, and we have chosen to apply other laws on top of, not instead of, US law.
We can adopt standards that are stricter than what US law allows, but we legally cannot adopt more liberal standards. The fact that this means South African or Brazilian or German campaigners' work "goes to waste" is perhaps unfortunate, but we cannot just choose to ignore US law. D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 21:54, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345: @D. Benjamin Miller: "Commons (hosted in the US) is breaking US law." you seem to be making the assumption that use here on Commons is commercial, which it is not. If we publish an image of (for example) a modern statue in Germany, it is likely that it could not legally be commercially used in the U.S., but our own hosting of that image would almost certainly be considered fair use for an educational purpose, even if our site doesn't explicitly make that claim on each such page. Most online fair use for educational purposes in the U.S. is not explicitly called out on the relevant sites, but that doesn't make it any less legal. - Jmabel ! talk 00:09, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel I did not make such statement. It was D. Benjamin Miller who made such statement. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:15, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, I got confused in the shuffle. - Jmabel ! talk 00:57, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I'm not saying that Commons is commercial. But the US has no "non-commerical" freedom of panorama provision. Sure, some uses will be justified by fair use, but that depends on the specific use. It's hard to believe that at least some of those examples are not fair use. Most online "fair use" is not actually really fair use, but just a case of copyright not being enforced. In any case, Commons doesn't accept fair-use rationales, and doesn't accept "the copyright isn't being enforced" as a justification to host something either. D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 01:29, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

US FoP-only or US law-only proposal[edit]

  • @King of Hearts and Yann: I would rather oppose immediate overhaul of Commons' FoP policy to only respect U.S. law just because Wikimedia Foundation's main servers are in the U.S. (even if there are also servers in Singapore and elsewhere), in an identical rule as being enforced on English Wikipedia (although the practice on enwiki is not yet an official policy). This matter was brought up by @D. Benjamin Miller: at FoP talk page before. See Commons talk:Freedom of panorama#Ideas wanted to tackle Freedom of Panorama issue for the very looooong debate involving me and D. Benjamin Miller. WMF representative Sannita (WMF) themself is cold on the idea of applying U.S. law blanketly on Commons while disregarding all other countries' laws, and for a good reason (Commons will potentially face trouble in front of French authorities and anti-Wikipedia group ADAGP). Other than that, I do not agree to a premature change to U.S. law-only policy sitewide, because:
  • This may impact Wikimedians in countries with adequate FoP like Singapore and Brazil. Images of Christ the Redeemer statue and Merlion statue may become major targets of mass deletions as these are unfree in the U.S.. Expect stiff opposition from Wikimedians in U.K., Singapore, Brazil, and other 70+ countries with adequate FoP including sculptural monuments.
  • This may put all FoP efforts by Discott and other South African Wikimedians to waste as the soon-to-be-implemented South African FoP may become invalid on Commons; the only motivation for them to pursue FoP advocacy is for Commons to be able to host post-1990 monuments of Nelson Mandela and other monuments connected to South African culture and post-colonial history.
  • This may discourage FoP movements globally including an initiative that both Reke and Buszmail plan to commence, for "ESEAP" Wikimedia region (East, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific), since there may be no more reason for such movements if only U.S. FoP would be followed by Commons.
  • We here in the Philippines are monitoring for the progress of copyright law amendment bills here (three lower House and one upper House/Senate bills containing FoP clause), see meta:Pilipinas Panorama Community/Freedom of Panorama#Recent developments; admittedly, our government is too focused on matters irrelevant for Wikimedians like the proposed revision of the country's Constitution, but we are still hopeful that one day (maybe in 2025 or 2026) FoP will finally be implemented here.
  • And lastly, limited scope of Wiki Loves Monuments photo contests, which will be undesirable.

_ JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 19:24, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@JWilz12345 Your point about South Africa doesn't make much sense to me. All uploads on Commons already have to follow US copyright in addition to their country of origin, no? They couldn't upload the statues here either way, because they will be copyrighted in the US. PARAKANYAA (talk) 21:26, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@PARAKANYAA: Theoretically (i.e. in terms of what the law prescribes) yes, but practically (i.e. in terms of what is actually followed on Commons) no, as D. Benjamin Miller describes above. -- King of ♥ 23:24, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Really? Huh. PARAKANYAA (talk) 23:29, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@PARAKANYAA kindly look at dozens of Merlion statues here. The famous icon of Singapore is legally not free in the U.S.. Still, a mass deletion of 99% of those images (perhaps 1% may be de minimis) is a dagger at the hearts of Singaporean Wikimedians and Wikimedians who shared images of the monument here. Are you in favor of totally nuking out all of non-incidental Merlion statue images? JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:01, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345 Considering that, unlike the reverse, it is illegal for us to keep doing that, yeah? I mean that's kind of unrelated. PARAKANYAA (talk) 01:27, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Like what Jmabel said, Commons itself does not make profit from the images (technically, not illegal). It is the American reusers' possible commercial use of the images of post-1928 Singaporean/Brazilian/German (and in the future, South African/Philippine) monuments that may be illegal, and this is alleviated by the tag that you called "dubious". But Commons is aimed to be multilingual and international and is aimed for all users and netizens globally, not just American users and netizens, notwithstanding that WMF is hosted in the U.S. (but in fact, WMF is not wholly hosted in the U.S.). JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 01:53, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It aims to be, but is (commons at least) hosted in the US. That is the legal reality. And IIRC the non commercial clause with FoP doesn't apply in the US. PARAKANYAA (talk) 02:09, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Regarding South Africa, should Discott et. al. succeed, the images of Nelson Mandela statues can be hosted here, all slapped with {{Not-free-US-FOP}}. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:51, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The license in that is dubious. Commons is hosted in the US and therefore the highest priority is obeying US law. PARAKANYAA (talk) 01:28, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@PARAKANYAA so, in your POV, no nelson Mandela statues from South Africa could be hosted here even if South Africa finally implements FoP? Note that the tag is a result of a similarly-heated discussion: Commons:Requests for comment/Non-US Freedom of Panorama under US copyright law. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 01:45, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345 Well it's illegal. The project could get sued for that. I'm not going to suggest we mass delete every file but it is an issue, yeah.
And again, it's irrelevant to the problem. Hypothetically making it so we ignore FoP rules that are higher than America's does not, strictly speaking, mean we have to ignore that which is lower. Theoretically we could do both. It's not bending the rules any more than we already are. PARAKANYAA (talk) 02:07, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  • I really doubt this will happen, but I would support applying US law only for FoP issues, and just put a warning like the German projects use. We already do that with PD-Art stuff. PARAKANYAA (talk) 21:28, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @PARAKANYAA if you want to have U.S. copyright law as the only law to be honored here, then applying it only to FoP does not make sense. It only creates inconsistency as other works, like PD-government works of other countries, are not legally OK to be hosted in the U.S.. You may want to apply it to all other copyright-related areas like works of foreign governments. For sure, the PD or copyright-free provisions for government works of certain countries (like the Philippines: {{PD-PhilippinesGov}}) will become invalid here as those government works are eligible for U.S. copyright (see w:Wikipedia:Templates for discussion/Log/2024 March 30#Template:Non-free Philippines government). But again, I do not favor a sitwide imposition of U.S. law only policy for areas like FoP and copyright, without proper consultations with Wikimedians from 70+ countries with full FoP up to monuments as well as with Wikimedians from countries that do not copyright their government works. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 02:38, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    It's already inconsistent, though. From a legal point of view we have to follow US copyright. It is not an option. Anything else is secondary. PARAKANYAA (talk) 02:51, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @PARAKANYAA so (even if this is not FoP-related but relates to U.S. copyright intervention), what are your thoughts on public domain works of foreign governments like the Philippines? Per Geni at the templates-for-discussion forum at enwiki (who happens to be the creator of the template I nominated), Philippine government works do not benefit PD-USGov as the Philippines is no longer a U.S. dependency or overseas territory, even if those are PD here in the Philippines. In the event of sitwide U.S. law-only imposition, are most {{PD-PhilippinesGov}} files going to be "sentenced to death penalty" because of possibly not in PD in the United States? JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 03:06, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Hi all, sorry to be late, but I was out yesterday for personal reasons. I just wanted to point out I'm not "WMF representative", but a Community Relations Specialist, i.e. a community liaison for Wikimedia Foundation. My positions are not to be intended as WMF official positions, those come from people who have this kind of power, like the CEO or any of the Directors of WMF departments. Anyway, I noticed relevant people at the Foundation about this discussion, and will let you know if there are news. Sannita (WMF) (talk) 23:08, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Sannita (WMF) I stand corrected. I thought you are a representative because of the suffix in your user name (WMF). Any way, the FoP matter should be treated seriously and thanks for reaching it out to the higher-ups of WMF organization. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 23:56, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345 Yes, I work for WMF and sometimes I speak on behalf of the teams I assist, like the Structured Content team for the UploadWizard improvements. For this kind of discussion, I keep in touch with other teams, which usually deal with these kind of things. Sannita (WMF) (talk) 10:40, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Sannita (WMF) noted. Again, thanks for bringing the FoP matter to the higher-ups in WMF. Mandating U.S. copyright law-only policy on Commons can have far-reaching consequences, even if Wikimedia servers are based in the U.S.. Not only it affects images of many monuments in countries with full FoP like Singapore, Brazil, Thailand, and India, but also PD government works in the Philippines (PD-PhilippinesGov is not synonymous to PD-USGov; U.S. law will treat all post-1990 Philippine government works as copyrighted in the U.S., as per Geni at the enwiki template discussion forum I mentioned above). JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 03:59, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  •  Support Proposal for using US-only copyright law here. We gain incomparably more than we lose if it will happen. Tons of files with buildings from Arabian and post-USSR countries, France, Italy, Bulgaria, Romania and more and more will be restored. Yes, images with modern monuments will probably be deleted, but number of these files are much smaller than with buildings ones. I am filtering a large number of high-quality photos when uploading via Flickr due to FOP problems (90-99% - architecture-related files). FOP in South Africa and the Philippines will probably never be realized, or it will be like in Ukraine, where, despite the numerous efforts of Ukrainian Wikimedians, the government of this country has "pleased" us with "provided that such actions do not have independent economic value" (see COM:FOP Ukraine). Even if it will be introduced, it is not a guarantee that it will last long. Over the past 20 years, only 6 countries have introduced FOP and 0 1 (small Timor-Leste) in the last 7 years. It the other hand, FOP has been abolished in 9 countries over the past 20 years and in 5 over the past 6 years. FOP in Australia and in Chile is now under pressure. What will be next? Abolishment/restrictions for FOP in most (if not in all) of remaining FOP-countries? Юрий Д.К 20:53, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @Юрий Д.К. if you want a massive change, you may want to open a formal COM:RfC in a similar way as Commons:Requests for comment/Non-US Freedom of Panorama under US copyright law. This is just a general discussion.
    IMO, while the impact of "nuclear-bombing" all of non-DM images of monuments from those 70+ countries may be insignificant for Wikimedia Commons, it could adversely affect Wiki Loves Monuments by only restricting to pre-1929 monuments, defeating the purpose of the photo competition that Dutch Wikimedians began more than 10 years ago (I think that was in 2011 if I read that correctly). Unless WLM should be axed altogether and replaced with a nicely-named "Wiki Loves Architecture" that is more binding with U.S. law. Do not expect participants to follow filtered lists of monuments in WLM submissions. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 21:46, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @Юрий Д.К. but you seem to forgot that Timor-Leste introduced FoP in 2023 (see COM:FOP East Timor), coinciding wit h their very first copyright law. Following Portuguese model and not the model of Indonesia (which has no FoP). JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 21:55, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Yes, thank. I have updated my statement. But still 5-1 in favor to FOP-abolishment in the last 6-7 years. Unfortunately, Timor-Leste is a very small country and it can't give to as many photos of buildings and monuments... Юрий Д.К 22:03, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @Юрий Д.К. perhaps a user involved in East Timorese images may disagree (ping @J. Patrick Fischer). JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 22:06, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Pros and cons of mandating U.S. copyright law sitewide[edit]

I'll try to list down advantages and disadvantages of mandating U.S. copyright law as the law to be followed by Wikimedia Commons sitewide, with some references to discussions or inputs if applicable, excluding the possible negative implications to the Wikimedia movements in 70+ yes-FoP countries should U.S. law be implemented as the only law to be respected by the media repository. The list also excludes the possible legal consequences Wikimedia may face in countries known to have anti-FoP and anti-Wikipedia groups like France.

  • Commons could be able to host works of architecture from 100+ countries with no FoP, even from the likes of France where commercial licensing of images of French buildings is deemed illegal and prosecutable. Thousands of deleted images could be restored, such as those of Burj Khalifa (🇦🇪), Louvre Pyramid (🇫🇷), Verkhovna Rada (🇺🇦), Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (🇬🇷), and Lotte World Tower (🇰🇷), since these are free to be exploited commercially under U.S. law. (Refer to: Commons talk:Freedom of panorama#Ideas wanted to tackle Freedom of Panorama issue).
  • Pre-1929 works of art worldwide could be hosted on Commons (sculptures, etc.).
  • U.S. threshold of originality sets a high bar, so perhaps dozens of logos, title cards, movie posters, and license plates from the likes of U.K., Switzerland, Singapore, China, and the Philippines could be undeleted/hosted.
  • Simplification on cases of old images: only U.S. terms (using COM:URAA if applicable) would now be considered and longer terms of Mexico and Jamaica could be ignored.
  • A.I. art from U.K. and China could be hosted here because U.S. does not recognize A.I. as copyrightable artworks.
  • Since the U.S. law does not allow FoP for non-architectural monuments, perhaps images of thousands of public sculptures and monuments of 70+ countries built or installed from 1929 onwards could face deletion requests, as these are only free in their countries but not in the United States. (Countries like Singapore, Thailand, India, Bangladesh, Brunei, Malaysia, Timor-Leste, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, U.K., Ireland, Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Poland, and Israel.) This would not only impact copyrighted monuments of those countries, but also monuments that are already PD in those countries but still copyrighted in the U.S. due to COM:URAA. This could negatively affect the scope of Wiki Loves Monuments in those countries. Should FoP implementation in South Africa become successful after the radical change in copyright policy of Commons, then it is virtually useless as Nelson Mandela statues of that country would no longer be welcome here. Also to think of: images of Armenian, Belgian, Albanian, and Moldovan monuments that were restored after FoP was introduced in those countries during 2010s.
  • Using the logic and based on Geni's opinion at w:Wikipedia:Templates for discussion/Log/2024 March 30#Template:Non-free Philippines government, then possibly most photographs made by foreign governments like the Philippine government would have to be deleted as the U.S. copyright law does not appear to grant public domain rights to works of foreign governments. {{PD-PhilippinesGov}}, long-debated in the past, would face "death sentence" as PD-PhilippinesGov is not synonymous to PD-USGov as the Philippines is not a U.S. overseas territory. May similarly affect photographs licensed through the likes {{PD-IDGov}} and {{PD-NorwayGov}} too. This excludes foreign government works that are explicitly under free-culture CC or copyright-free licenses, like works of South Korean and Japanese governments.

The pros and cons are not exhaustive though. My compilation of the list does not, in any way, change my stance: my opposition to sitewide U.S. FoP or U.S. copyright law-only suggestion still prevails. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 07:58, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I added one pro-reason. In many cases, we have kept content made by governments if they are in the public domain in the country of origin. Yann (talk) 09:34, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Yann regarding FoP, I still insist that no sitewide copyright policy change should be made, without proper consultations. I forgot one more: WMF must be consulted first (and I think Sannita (WMF) has already aired the FoP concerns to the higher-ups within WMF). That is, alongside consultations with representatives of Wikimedia chapters and user groups that come from 70+ yes-FoP countries. It seems harsh if Wikimedia Singapore peeps suddenly receive notice or news that dozens of non-de minimis images of their famous monument (1960s Merlion) are going to be expunged off the media repository because of suddenly needing to comply U.S. law. It is also reasonable to consult with Wikimedia South Africa first, as they are heavily involved in trying to have adequate FoP introduced in their country, and their motivation to have FoP introduced is for their Nelson Mandela statues and other monuments connected to modern South African history to be finally be hosted here. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 10:28, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Sure. Such a change needs a wide consultation and vote. Actually, I am on the fence here. Yann (talk) 10:34, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Allowing FoP images of buildings by applying the more lenient US law (rather than whatever stricter law exists in the building's country) is an appropriate question for a vote. It's wholly inappropriate, however, to vote on whether or not we can just choose to ignore US law — that is really only a matter for WMF Legal. D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 20:42, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Both of your listed disadvantages make no sense.
  • Whether or not US law applies is not our choice. It does apply. It always applies. We must follow US law on Commons. This is a US-hosted website. (The fact that some visitors come from elsewhere does not remove any obligation to follow US law.)
    Within the context of US law applying, @Jmabel argues that US law allows for (most? some?) pictures of monuments to be posted within the context of Wikimedia Commons for non-commercial use on the theory that this is fair use as long as it's not commercial. Jmabel is arguing that these are non-free media in the US, but that their use is nevertheless justifiable. I find this highly dubious (especially as a blanket position), but it's at least an argument. Note also Wikimedia Commons has no Exemption Doctrine Policy as required by WMF policy, and the FoP "ignore US law for anything that isn't in the US" policy is far too broad to qualify as an eligible EDP.
  • Your point about public domain works by non-US governments makes no sense (and has nothing to do with this issue).
    • US copyright laws categorically exclude works by the US Federal Government from copyright protection. Therefore, if a work is by the US Federal Government, we can say that it's in the public domain under US law.
    • US copyright laws don't categorically exclude works by foreign (or state) governments from copyright protection. Works by foreign governments can be copyrighted in the US. But that doesn't mean they always are. Foreign and state governments can disclaim copyrights, and when this is done, these items are in the public domain in the US. They just enter the US public domain effectively by being dedicated to the public domain.
D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 20:40, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@D. Benjamin Miller: you seem to be ignoring my remark immediately below, posted almost six hours before yours. I don't think this is the first time you have confused the matter of what is legal for Commons to do and what is legal for non-educational, commercial use in the U.S. Of course we are not saying it is optional as to whether Commons obeys U.S. law. As an non-commercial educational site, U.S. law gives us enormous latitude for "fair use". Our policy has been not to use that latitude, but choosing to do so would be perfectly legal (though not necessarily advisable). - Jmabel ! talk 23:23, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
You are not saying that following US law is optional, but the way that Jwilz12345 has discussed the issue implies that. If not, then there would be no need to pit "advantages" against "disadvantages" because the choice to allow for FoP based on US law for buildings in stricter countries would not be tied in any way to restricting FoP for items not covered by US FoP.
In any case, yes, some (or even most) of these uses on Wikimedia sites may be fair use in the US context — but, as with everything related to fair use, it depends on a bunch of factors. Even with WMF projects being non-commercial, this doesn't mean that every use is necessarily fair use. At least some of these uses are bound to be infringing.
In any case, the WMF, as a rule, wouldn't allow for a fair use exemption this broad (which, to be clear, is a matter of WMF policy and not just US law). So this sort of change would require a change to WMF policy on fair use of non-free content. The merits of such a change can of course be debated, but I just want to make it clear that expanding fair use justifications and allowing for PD-US content to be posted aren't bound together.
D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 01:50, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@D. Benjamin Miller regarding "some visitors", I don't think so. In this link provided by now-blocked 4nn1l2 here, there are more visitors outside the U.S. combined than U.S. visitors. Here are the number of visitors from top 22 countries (with at least 1M visitors) as of this writing:
21M - United States of America
17M - Germany
6M - France
5M - United Kingdom
3M - Russian Federation
3M - Italy
3M - Japan
3M - India
3M - Canada
3M - Spain
2M - Poland
2M - Netherlands
2M - South Africa
1M - Brazil
1M - Australia
1M - Austria
1M - Korea (South)
1M - Czech Republic
1M - Switzerland
1M - Ukraine
1M - Ireland
1M - Iran, Islamic Republic of
USA - 21M
Yes FoP - 41M
No complete FoP for sculptures - 20M
It is disadvantageous to most of our visitors (majority from yes-FoP countries) to completely shift to U.S. law just because of the legal obligation as being hosted in the U.S.. Note that the figures given by 4nn1l2 were as of January 2022. (USA: 20M and Germany: 14M) As of this time, new 3M visitors from Germany were added, as opposed to just a million from the US. Assuming the trend continues, this may indicate sometime in the future German visitors will overtake American visitors, making Commons a U.S. media repository site whose majority of its visitors aren't even from the U.S.. (And just an addition, per Hostinger, the most-visited non-social media site in the U.S. is the Amazon, not Wikimedia platforms or even Wikipedia).
Not to mention that majority of legal literatures on FoP are from the Europe, and the 2015 FoP debates and discourse in the EU Parliament were the reflection of it. Completely shifting to U.S. FoP only will ignore the efforts by Wikimedians from UK, Netherlands, Germany, and other yes-FoP EU countries to defend their states' FoP in terms of allowing both buildings and monuments here. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:06, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Sure, the "some" visitors who are not from the US can be most of the visitors on the site. But even if almost none of the visitors to Wikimedia Commons were in the US, we'd still have to follow US law.
Let me give you another example. As you point out, there are millions of visitors from Germany. There are a lot of things that are in the public domain in Germany (because the author died over 70 years ago), but which aren't in the public domain in the US. For example, something published in 1951 by someone who died in 1953 is in the public domain in Germany, but not the US. Some of these things would be wonderful for German viewers to look at, and would be perfectly legal to host in Germany. But we can't just host such things on the German Wikipedia — even if they'd be great illustrations for Germany-based viewers — because the German Wikipedia is hosted in the United States. If the German Wikipedia were hosted in Germany, there would be no problem with such files.
Would it be better (for Germany-based users) to be able to see that wonderful item that's PD-DE but not PD-US? Sure! I totally agree! But it cannot be hosted on a US-based site. D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 01:55, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@D. Benjamin Miller regarding German Wikipedia, they actually host full resolutions of copyrighted monuments of countries with no-FoP. They do not follow the lack of U.S. FoP for monuments. Examples: w:de:Datei:Chicago Big Bean1.JPG (2560x1920px, which is a substantial resolution no longer fair use under U.S. law) and w:de:Datei:Korean War Veterans Memorial 1171.JPG (2592x1944px). Just like enwiki applying lex loci protectonis thru U.S. law, dewiki applies that too. Not U.S. law though, but the more lenient German law, and German FoP allows images of copyrighted monuments (w:de:Vorlage:Panoramafreiheit). Sure dewiki is not hosted in Germany but in U.S., but dewiki is not made to serve the interests of U.S. visitors, but visitors from Germany as well as most German-speaking countries (many of them, like Austria and Switzerland, have identical liberal FoP for monuments). So your assumption that all Wikipedias should comply with U.S. law is not true in reality. Blindly enforcing U.S. law to these wikis to finally comply their FoP policies to U.S. law may lead to some conflicts within Wikimedia community, which may hinder Wikimedia movements in countries with full FoP for monuments as well as FoP movements in South Africa, Georgia, Ghana, and others where FoP introduction is being discussed, lobbied, or tackled. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 03:06, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The German Wikipedia must follow US law. Whether or not they actually do is not relevant to whether or not they must.
Also, fair use has almost nothing to do with image resolution, especially in such cases as these. The "low-resolution" rule is an example of (English) Wikipedia being stricter (in some ways) than the fair use doctrine.
When receiving a DMCA takedown notice, including for images of sculptures in "FoP" countries, WMF Legal removed those items. They endorse the idea of changing US law, but, as they say: " While it is true that some of the sculptures in question here are located in countries whose copyright regime conflicts with the U.S’s regime, current U.S. conflict of law principles indicate that U.S. copyright law would apply in evaluating the scope of a copyright holder’s rights." D. Benjamin Miller (talk) 05:03, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@D. Benjamin Miller so in your POV, should dewiki be compelled to overhaul their existing FoP policy to align with U.S. FoP (even if they don't serve U.S. visitors' interests)? For sure, several images of copyrighted sculptures locally hosted there would not fit to the U.S. fair use standards, since those images can be freely used commercially, and those uses are out of dewiki admins' control.
And lastly, should Wikimedians in those 70+ countries be compelled to accept that thousands of non-de minimis images of their post-1928 monuments would be taken down through this proposed U.S. law-only policy in the name of legal compliance to the copyright law of the United States, even if this may frustrate and dishearten them or may trigger some loss in enthusiasm in conducting Wikimedia movements on (especially on monuments and heritage) in their respective countries? Should the upcoming South African FoP be disregarded too even if that was the legal exception Discott and other South African Wikimedians fought for (since around 2014/15) just to allow hosting of recent monuments of South Africa on Commons? JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 07:36, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
FYI, French language Wikipedia doesn't the same. It hosts French works of art if the pictures are under a free license, as there would be FoP in France. Yann (talk) 08:11, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I have never been able to fathom why the German Wikipedia follows German law, and not that of other countries with German-speaking populations, such as, say, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg or Namibia. Or even the United States, where there are over a million people who speak it as a first language. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:16, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Pigsonthewing: Germany, Austria, Switzerland (not sure about Luxembourg) have generally harmonized their laws in copyright matters, including FoP. So the vast majority of the German-speaking world is under pretty much the same laws on this. - Jmabel ! talk 19:39, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Pigsonthewing: The official de.wp policy, going back to ca. 2010 with similar rules before that, is to follow German, Austrian and Swiss copyright law, and if they differ from each other, the most restrictive one of those (de:Wikipedia:Bildrechte#Wikipedia richtet sich nach DACH-Recht). Though that is not entirely true, because Austria's very low threshold of originality (as evidenced by several court decisions involving logos) is effectively ignored. --Rosenzweig τ 22:00, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
So what you're saying is that it is okay for a US website to violate copyright on a work of art, provided the text besides the picture is in a language not in English (which is neither native nor official)? Or that they target a country where it's legal (like Sealand or South Sudan, which I pretty sure most torrent sites exclusively target?)--Prosfilaes (talk) 22:48, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Prosfilaes I am not saying that the U.S. website violate the copyright on the work of art. What I'm saying is that Commons can retain status quo by hosting monuments of 70+ countries where uses of monuments in copyright is legal (note that {{Not-free-US-FOP}} is in English because it is for U.S. reusers). Commons is a U.S. website in legal terms only but it is an international site in terms of reach and so it should also be able to use FoP of 70+ countries. It will not fulfill its service to majority of our visitors (from 70+ yes-FoP countries) if it were to only comply U.S. law because of legality issues. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 23:00, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Above you mentioned the Chicago Bean and the Korean War Monument, not monuments of FOP countries. Commons is a US website in legal terms; therefore it should have to follow the laws, including FoP rules, of the US. If that means it will not fulfill its service, then its service is not legally fulfillable. Moreover, early works by Picasso are legal in the US and the life+50 world (and more than half the world's population is in countries with shorter than life+70 terms); how does it fulfill our service to those parts of the world to not host those images, just because Europeans can't see them?--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:50, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Prosfilaes they are hosted in full resolutions on German Wikipedia, however. And despite dewiki is hosted in the US (not Germany or Austria or Switzerland), they are following their local-exemption doctrine by allowing unfree sculptures of countries like the U.S.. Those images are in reoslutions that are exceeding usual U.S. fair use standards.
As for Picasso works, those are only legal if the works are in the U.S.. Picasso works outside the U.S. may be at mercy of COM:URAA, unless a work is simultaneously published in the U.S. too (which remained to be seen if those Picasso works outside the U.S. were also simultaneously published in the U.S. too to deny URAA extensions).
Re: service of hosting: it is the hosting of other monuments of Netherlands, Germany, Armenia, Singapore, and other post-1928 monuments of those countries. For sure, some (if not all) Wikimedians in those 70+ countries will resist any attempt to completely shift to U.S. law just to please legal obligations. The impacts on Wikimedia movements in those countries as well as enthusiasm to participate in WLM photo contests are also to be considered. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:07, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I don't understand why we spend so much time worrying about the law, stuff like that Mickey Mouse and Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha aren't free in Germany, and then decide not to worry about following the law that legally restricts Commons. It's a farce.
All works published (by Picasso, or anyone else) before 1929 are in the public domain in the US, and all works of Picasso are public domain in China and other life+50 countries.--Prosfilaes (talk) 00:29, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Prosfilaes you may have confused. Following D. Benjamin Miller's arguments, all Wikimedia sites, inclusive of Commons and German Wikipedia, should be obliged to follow U.S. law as the law of the WMF servers' host country.
German Wikipedia already hosts many modern monuments that are infringements to U.S. copyright, applying their local EDP which states that only German FoP is to be followed by the wiki site. The Cloud Gate and KRVM images that I were referring too are full-resolution images hosted on dewiki (in direct conflict with the U.S. law).
Regarding Commons, should FoP policy be radically modified to only follow U.S. law, then Picasso's post-1928 public domain works in other countries may need to be deleted, as these are not yet in public domain in the U.S.. Read again the suggestions for Commons to only follow U.S. law and disregard the copyright laws of other countries.
Again, I maintain that the current status quo on FoP policy be unchanged, as this is a very unnecessary debate to begin with. Only following U.S. copyright law in the name of the legal obligation is a disfavor for Wikimedians of 70+ yes-FoP countries pursuing increased coverage of monuments on the media repository; more so, it is a direct insult to South African Wikimedians who were already fighting for FoP to be introduced in their country to finally allow Nelson Mandela statues and other monuments of recent South African history to be hosted here. It is also an insult to Filipino Wikimedians who are trying to have FoP introduced here (yes, here in the Philippines) so that not only buildings can now be hosted but also dozens of Philippine sculptural monuments built after 1970s. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 00:44, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I am not confused. The WMF is a US non-profit, running a website in the US. That is the law that it must follow. Cry insult all you want, that doesn't give you immunity from the law.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:32, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

One amendment to the above: in terms of the U.S. side of this (vs. the country of origin), it is not a matter of us following only U.S. copyright law, with which I believe our current policies conform. It is a matter of hosting only files that would be OK to use commercially in the U.S. (& FWIW I'd oppose making this large change at this late date.) - Jmabel ! talk 14:46, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I'm skeptical that non-commercial fair use completely subsumes FoP. That's practically saying we can host photos of any and every painting or artwork, since the fair use rules are pretty disjoint from FoP. That would cut into the commercial value of a book collections of a painter's work, which deeply hurts fair use.--Prosfilaes (talk) 00:01, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

So... how big is our lobby in the USA, pushing for a redesign the USA FoP to a more inclusive one? Serious question: many other countries have been doing this for years, some more successful than others. What is the USA community (not WMF, but all users from the states, and the Chapter and UG we have there) doing?

One BIG downside I see when Wikimedia Commons would change it's policies to US-only, it the move of files back to the local projects - which is already happening for some cases because the Commons-admins way of enforcement of the URAA is changing. I became a Commons admin when all our locally hosted image files were moved to Commons back in 2008, and our local upload function has been (sort of) closed ever since: we direct people to Commons to do their uploads, so their images can be used globally without interference from our side. Commons over the course of the last 15 years has build a lot of experience, knowledge and documentation on all sorts of copyright laws, and the information pages may not always be perfect, but at a higher level and if you know where to look, you will be able to navigate between all the necessary information. This can never be done in a similar way on local projects.
My prediction is that opening the local projects for local uploads again (as we will have to do when the Commons community decides it needs to be US-law-only -of which I am yet to be convinced), instead of collecting all (or: most) files in one Wikimedia Commons, will lead to Commons being less central for all projects, less used by local wiki's, less traffic, less volunteers, bigger backlogs. Local wiki's on the other hand will struggle with which copyright policies to apply and make their own rules - either out of ignorance or because Commons-US-law does not allow for their uploads. Duplication of files will be all around again, copyright knowledge will get scattered, copyright violations will increase. All in all a decision like this is bound to damage our work, damage the good name we have established and lead to way more work - and maybe also more legal complaints and increased forced take-downs, when you look at it from the point of view for the complete Movement instead of just the one project of Wikimedia Commons.

Please, without a legal ruling on a case before the courts: let's not. Ciell (talk) 16:16, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

A lot of that experience can go away if Commons is US-only. A whole lot of knowledge about random copyright laws is simply superfluous in that case. Note that that the proposal is not for Wikimedia Commons to change its policies; COM:L has said "Uploads of non-U.S. works are normally allowed only if the work is either in the public domain or covered by a valid free license in both the U.S. and the country of origin of the work." since at least 2010, and it seems to be merely a clarification of what the 2007 page said.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:32, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

automatically use "Igen|Matplotlib|+|s=|code=" template[edit]

I have a bunch of things uploaded with ```python ... ```, like

I recently noticed that I can do {{Igen|Matplotlib|+|s=|code= ... }}

How do I do the conversion automatically? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cosmia Nebula (talk • contribs) 21:20, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 11[edit]

Wikimedia Summit[edit]

Reminder that the Wikimedia Summit in Berlin begins a week from now, with the intention of adopting the meta:Movement Charter. I'll be there to represent Cascadia Wikimedians but I have their permission to represent concerns from the Commons community, so if anyone has something they want me to bring up, please let me know.

The main concern I intend to bring on behalf of Commons is that (1) the proposed governance structure is overly tilted toward affiliates and hence is almost guaranteed to under-represent those whose participation is strictly online, which I believe is the case for the majority of Commoners. The other concerns I intend to bring up (a bit more peripheral to the formal agenda, but I believe that a lot of the people to whom this concern needs to be brought will be there) are that (2) WMF's technical support and development priorities for Commons have too often been driven by what someone at WMF thinks would be nifty and too little by what the Commons community actually wants or needs and (3) the development approaches of that team have been insufficiently agile, not even approaching the agility of our volunteer developers. On that last, it seems that no feature, no matter how trivial, can happen with less than half a year elapsing between request and completion, and that even simple bug fixes can take months. Also, that when it becomes dead clear that they are going the wrong way (e.g. the ill-fated "suggested edits" on the Android app [and, by the way, I see that page has not been updated to indicate that this was a failure and has been turned off]), it can take literally years for them to turn around, not to mention multiple person-months of paid staff time to perform a formal study to come to confirm the Commons community's uniform feedback that this "feature" was a liability.

Are there other concerns I should equally be bringing in? Does anyone strongly disagree with any of these three? - Jmabel ! talk 19:11, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Your points are very valid. Another issue is that is does not seem like anybody from the technical team is formally assigned to go through items like the "Village pump/Technical" on Commons. Questions can remain unanswered for long periods of time. Cheers Rsteen (talk) 03:30, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
About (3): a request to WMF can be answered with: "this is not in the budget of the current business year, we have to wait for the next business year". Maybe there should be an accrual for unexpected software projects.
I have learnt that WMDE has 160 paid employees and I feel a discrepancy between the high number of employees and the little visible results of their work. I don't know the figure for WMF, but maybe it's similar there? C.Suthorn ( - (talk) 03:41, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Allegedly WMF had ~700 employees at the start of 2023 (however they laid off some since then. Possibly they also have not been replacing some of the turn over so it might be lower now). I don't know if i would say lack of agile is neccesarily the problem - teams are reasonably agile within their assigned domains. The part that is problematic is anything between the cracks of assigned domains is utterly ignored, and the cracks are very large. Bawolff (talk) 21:21, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Hi Jmabel,
as member in the drafting committee I will also be in Berlin next week, and I would be very happy to talk through the concerns you see in the current Charter draft - and maybe those of others here in the Village Pump as well - and see how we can improve the Charter. As it is proposed now the minority of the Global Council will come from affiliates, and even in affiliates there are a lot of volunteers that come from the projects and hold board positions, but that does not mean there isn't room for improvement and an even better representation from across the communities and online projects. Looking forward to have our conversation in person! Ciell (talk) 16:04, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Ciell: I very much look forward to having a chance to talk. I'm arriving Wednesday, roughly mid-day. When are you arriving? Can we set up a time to talk? Feel free to contact me more privately (you can email through my account here). - Jmabel ! talk 19:43, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel: I will be arriving on Tuesday because the MCDC has 2 days of preparation in Berlin ahead of the Summit. We are all in the same hotel though, and will walking around throughout the Summit to answer questions and hear your feedback, so I am sure we'll have plenty of time to talk. Wishing you safe travels! Ciell (talk) 13:31, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Why does my PDF have dimensions 0×0?[edit]

I uploaded File:De proprietatibus rerum - deproprietatibu00bart.pdf the other day. Why does it show as having dimensions 0x0 with no thumbnail? It works locally. Marnanel (talk) 23:48, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Typically this means the pdfinfo command line tool has trouble reading the file. Bawolff (talk) 00:45, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
It does show dimensions and thumbs (at least now). It has a large number of pages and a large number of meta info entries. Maybe it took unusually long to update? C.Suthorn ( - (talk) 03:27, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
OK for me now. Yann (talk) 08:46, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Thanks all! Marnanel (talk) 18:21, 12 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 13[edit]

djvu is tiny and in the corner[edit]

I have just uploaded File:De proprietatibus rerum.djvu using the IA-upload bot. All the page images are tiny and in the lower left corner of each page. Did I do something wrong? Marnanel (talk) 21:10, 13 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Fixed manually now. If anyone knows what the problem was, I'd still like to hear! Marnanel (talk) 20:48, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 14[edit]

New cats for computer hardware by year[edit]


I thought about creating cats like "Microprocessors by year (of release)" or "Video cards by year (of release)" to make it easier to find processing units in less or more recent years. Does it make sense to create those cats (with subcats like 2024 microprocessors etc.).

Thanks! --PantheraLeo1359531 😺 (talk) 09:17, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

In my opinion this makes much more sense than many other categories we already have. -- Herbert Ortner (talk) 09:35, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
You could just create Category:Microprocessors by year. I don't think the "(of release)" thing is neccesary. That's not how we name other "by year" categories for products anyway. --Adamant1 (talk) 10:12, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
But there should be a warning template to only place photos of objects released in this year. GPSLeo (talk) 10:27, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I think the "of release" is necessary based on the other year categories we have on this site, you will end up with cats full by date taken, template or not Oxyman (talk) 14:09, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Oxyman: Which other categories are you talking about? If you look at similar "by year" categories for products no one thinks they have anything to do with dates the pictures were taken. Just to point out a few, Category:Postcards by year, Category:Films by year, Category:Video games by year, Etc. Etc. No one is confused that an image of a postcard in Category:1947 postcards was scanned or photographed in 1947 instead of it being the presumed year of publication. --Adamant1 (talk) 08:52, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I notice that in the examples you give the we are just recreating original artwork (by scanning etc) rather then creating new images, I have a preference for a reasonably descriptive cat name, But I am prepared to concede I may be wrong on this occasion, I'm not overly concerned about this, so go ahead and do what you think best Oxyman (talk) 23:58, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I did some research and the year is usually linked with the year of completion for buildings, and films by year for example refer to the date when they were shown in cinemas. TLoZ: Tears of the Kingdom and Breath of the Wild were developed over 6 years or so. Similar cases are in Category:Introductions by year, Category:Buildings by year of completion. I assume that people will look in "2023 microprocessors" for CPUs that were released in 2023 (and available in markets, shops etc.; similar to the cases mentioned above). If we want to pick up "different years", then they could be added to the category name. --PantheraLeo1359531 😺 (talk) 16:43, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Category:Productions by year covers cameras, game consoles and smartphones by year, linked availability to the public --PantheraLeo1359531 😺 (talk) 16:50, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
You'll need to be pretty specific about what "year of release" means here. Does it mean:
  1. The year that the exact microprocessor seen in the photograph was manufactured?
  2. The year that the manufacturer first sold microprocessors with that part number, speed, and package?
  3. The year that the manufacturer first sold microprocessors with that part number?
  4. The year that any manufacturer first sold that microprocessor?
  5. The year that any microprocessor in the overall family was first sold?
  6. The year that any microprocessor using that CPU architecture was sold?
For example: here is a photo of a Rockwell R65C02J3. According to its date code, it was made in 1987. Rockwell produced the R65C02 starting in 1983; for the sake of argument, let's also imagine that they only produced the J3 variant (3 MHz, plastic PLCC) starting in 1985. The 65C02 is a variant of the 6502, which was released in 1975. Given all of this information, what would its "year of release" be?
Omphalographer (talk) 20:57, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Omphalographer: Thank you for this hint! I would suggest the year where the product came into the markets/shops, because it may be easier to find out. The Threadripper 7970X as a recent example has "© 2022" written on its heatspreader, but was released in November 2023 for customers, so I would suggest 2023 as date here --PantheraLeo1359531 😺 (talk) 07:53, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Is there any reason that information can't just be a note in the category itself instead of being included in the name of the category though? Generally we are suppose to following naming conventions for other categories, and as I've pointed out already other category names don't contain "(of release) or whatever and seem to get along perfectly fine without it. --Adamant1 (talk) 08:52, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I am okay with both cases --PantheraLeo1359531 😺 (talk) 13:47, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

COM:FOP in the Netherlands?[edit]

I was reading up on FOP in the Netherlands, which allows photos in "public spaces", and specifically excludes interiors of museums. Yet almost every Dutch museum has an interior subcategory that all taken together contain thousands of photographs. Am I missing something here? Shouldn't those pictures be deleted? — Preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:29, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

If the objects are public domain and if the photographs of public domain 3D objects are freely licensed, I don't see an issue. Although sometimes things just fall through the cracks so if you find a particular object that isn't PD, feel free to start a DR of that file. Abzeronow (talk) 20:43, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Abzeronow@ if the radical change in FoP proposal (as seen in the thread above) pushes through, then the Netherlands FoP is going to be disregarded (only U.S. FoP now), so this question on Dutch museums is pointless now. Some artworks in those museums may be P.D. in the Netherlands but must be deleted because they are still copyrighted in the U.S. (those post-1928), so again the IP user's concern may be of no use very soon. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 21:50, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345: You seem to be arguing that because some people are having a discussion that shows no sign of reaching consensus, and hasn't even reached the level of a formal proposal, it is pointless to concern ourselves with current policy for a matter that would be unaffected by the outcome of that discussion. It would be unaffected because this matter has nothing to do with FoP (there is no indoor FoP in the Netherlands) and both under the current policy and the proposed policy, when FoP doesn't come into play we don't host artworks that are copyrighted in the U.S., regardless of their status in the country where they were photographed. And, yes, that is hard to follow—in fact, it adds up to nonsense—but I think it is an accurate paraphrase of what you said. If you think I'm wrong here, please be specific about how. - Jmabel ! talk 02:26, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel just one expression of my apparent frustration on what is happening here, that the status quo that has kept the project's FoP policy relatively intact and favorable to more visitors (more visitors are from countries with FoP than those with no FoP) is going to be shattered into pieces in an instant, by the desire to comply legal obligations and the desire to use "shortcut" approach in hosting Burj Khalifa pictures and other images of buildings from no-FoP countries. In fact, the events here may force me to recalibrate my Philippine FoP advocacy, because even if it becomes introduced here (let's say around 2025 or 2026), Philippine FoP is going to be disregarded by Commons anyway. Even Philippine-language Wikipedias cannot benefit Philippine FoP (following the arguments of D. Benjamin Miller) because those are not hosted here, but in the United States. My apology if I made some comment on this thread out of apparent frustration. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 04:01, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345: I'm (relatively) glad to hear that is mostly just frustration, but I really can't imagine why you think a position advocated by about three people (at least one of whom apparently can't distinguish between what is legal for Commons and for a commercial site), is assured of carrying the day, especially when it would represent a change from a policy that has stood for just shy of two decades. Please, when people come here with a question about current policy, don't confuse them with the fact that things might change. Things always might change, in any direction, but this was really more of a "help desk" type of question, and should have been handled accordingly. - Jmabel ! talk 04:26, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The WMF has (rather good) lawyers. If they believe major, longstanding Commons policy were illegal, we would long since have heard that from them. - Jmabel ! talk 04:27, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel noted. But I would rather not post at Help Desk. I would rather let a major RfC page (standalone page just like the debate that eventually led to the creation of {{Not-free-US-FOP}}) be started and I would reiterate my stance there. WMF peeps may also chime in on that potential RfC. Not appropriate to post at Help desk at this moment since I am aware of "forum shopping" infraction. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 04:32, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@JWilz12345: no, no, I was saying that's question was basically a help desk question, and we should not confuse people who ask for simple help with a bunch of meta-issues. - 04:34, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jmabel noted. JWilz12345 (Talk|Contrib's.) 05:23, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Exporting Images at Full Resolution from Website[edit]

Apologies if this is the wrong place, but does anyone know how to export International Image Interoperability Framework images from a website at full size and resolution? I would like to upload a booklet titled USAF and Installations and Master and Plans from the David Rumsey Map Collection website, but cannot figure out how to obtain a full-resolution, non-tiled image. I can achieve one, but not both at the same time. (e.g. Full-resolution, but tiled; low-resolution, but untiled) I studied the IIIF URL formatting, but there doesn't seem to be a parameter for resolution.

To address two potential questions:

  • Even though it was not strictly necessary as the booklet is public domain as a under contract for the US Air Force, I contacted the website and they confirmed "my use is permitted". (Further, note that the maps are also available directly from the USAF, but they are unfortunately even poorer quality than the downloaded images mentioned below.)
  • Even when the largest size option on the image page is selected via the export function it does not appear to download a full resolution image.

Alternatively, since there are 269 images in the album, if someone knows an easy way to batch upload the images using a script (or something like that, I'm not really familiar with it) and could do that, it would be greatly appreciated. (My plan was to download, potentially slightly crop to remove whitespace, and upload them.) –Noha307 (talk) 22:44, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Noha307: Do you have proof that this document is no longer RESTRICTED?   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 03:52, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
As per the USAF page linked above: "The entire collection was declassified in accordance with official guidance by the Air Force Historical Research Agency (AFHRA)." –Noha307 (talk) 19:34, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Noha307: Allrighty then, I have uploaded File:Burlington Municipal Airport Preliminary Master Plan v52-2.jpg for you using the dezoomify extension with standard IIIF support, and the GIMP v2.10.0 to convert from png to jpg format.   — 🇺🇦Jeff G. please ping or talk to me🇺🇦 22:21, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Jeff G.: Excellentǃ Thank you so very muchǃ
A question: Why did you convert to JPG format? I work in the museum field and always understood that best practice is to avoid using it (at least for non-access) due to the risk of artifacting and other problems caused by lossy compression. I presume it is because the file is so large that PNG (or TIFF) would be unwieldy?
Lastly, I really appreciate you pinging me. It makes it so much easier to keep track of these conversations. –Noha307 (talk) 01:54, 16 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 15[edit]

How do I import a set from the LOC website?[edit]

Normally I would ask User:Fae to do it for me, but he has retired from contributing. See: for the set. --RAN (talk) 02:34, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ): you should probably make a request at Commons:Batch uploading. - Jmabel ! talk 03:53, 16 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Public interiors in Ecuador[edit]

Do I read the policy correctly that public interiors are covered by FoP in Ecuador? Specifically, I have photographs of frescoes of a living artist which are located inside a city hall building in one of the cities of Ecuador. The building is accessible for everyone at no charge (during the hours it is open). May I upload them on Commons? I am pretty sure if the frescoes were on the outer facade of the building the answer were yes. Ymblanter (talk) 07:29, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

  • I see no explicit restriction in Ecuador FOP for public interiors like in German FOP: For works of architecture, this provision shall be applicable only to the external appearance. So, OK in my opinion for Ecuador public interiors here. Юрий Д.К 15:38, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Obvious copyvio patrol bot[edit]

seeing File:Barbie Headshot.jpg, i think a bot, which screens new uploads that fulfil certain criteria, will be good for commons copyvio detection:

  1. exif contains phrases like getty, Shutterstock, No use without permission, all rights reserved...
  2. wikitext contains such phrases
  3. uploads from users who are newly registered or have low edit counts.

RZuo (talk) 13:46, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Does Commons file upload reject a file whose metadata specifies an incompatible license? Metadata is often missing licenses or is otherwise a mess, but sometimes it will clearly specify a license URL. Glrx (talk) 15:20, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
No. For better or worse, file metadata is treated as informational only. Omphalographer (talk) 18:52, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
There used to be one, operated by User:Krd, tagging files copied from elsewhere without a valid license. Yann (talk) 15:23, 15 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

April 16[edit]

Categorisation - this discussion needs wider input[edit]

Hello, I recently protected File:X, 1980.jpg due to counterproductive edit-warring after the issue was reported on AN. There is an ongoing discussion at File talk:X, 1980.jpg#Category discussion which requires your input. A reasonable outcome of this dicussion would most likely solve this issue and we won't be having same issues again and again. Please do participate in the discussion and share your thoughts. Best regards, ─ Aafī (talk) 08:34, 16 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Should some images have huge margins, so they look right in wikiboxes?[edit]

one of may square election maps
longest side set to 100px with 100x100px

I just came across the claim, that some images with vertical motives should be square rather than vertical, "so they can look right in the wikiboxes". (Talk page and file history for context.) I think that can not be right. This idea probably refers to templates, that set the image width, although the intention is to set the longest side of the image. I would say, the obvious solution is to use the correct formatting in the template, and not to add left and right margins to vertical images. Any opinions? --Watchduck (quack) 10:25, 16 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]