Commons:Village pump/Copyright

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Welcome to the Village pump copyright section

This Wikimedia Commons page is used for general discussions relating to copyright and license issues, and for discussions relating to specific files' copyright issues. Discussions relating to specific copyright policies should take place on the talk page of the policy, but may be advertised here. Recent sections with no replies for 7 days and sections tagged with {{section resolved|1=~~~~}} may be archived; for old discussions, see the archives.

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Please note
  1. One of Wikimedia Commons' basic principles is: "Only free content is allowed." Please do not ask why unfree material is not allowed at Wikimedia Commons or suggest that allowing it would be a good thing.
  2. Have you read the FAQ?
  3. Any answers you receive here are not legal advice and the responder cannot be held liable for them. If you have legal questions, we can try to help but our answers cannot replace those of a qualified professional (i.e. a lawyer).
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This breakfast is only sold in "MyWarmDay". Can I upload it to Wikimedia Commons?[edit]

Take a look at this photo: "[1]". As you can see, it is a breakfast without product packaging. My question is: This breakfast is only sold in "MyWarmDay". I'm not sure if "this photo" can be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons?--Kai3952 (talk) 07:27, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

If you still don't know what is "MyWarmDay", then you can look at "File:Qidu Lucky Qiaosi Store, My Warm Day Cafe & Brunch 20161005.jpg".--Kai3952 (talk) 07:33, 15 June 2018 (UTC)
Food isn't copyrightable. --ghouston (talk) 09:45, 15 June 2018 (UTC)
That's right, food is not copyrightable, and the photo as such has been published under a free licence. So it can be uploaded to Commons. De728631 (talk) 00:03, 22 June 2018 (UTC)[edit]

Based on what I see at "COM:FOP#Taiwan", not OK for indoor works and outdoor 2D artistic works. I'm not sure if I can upload "this photo" to Wikimedia Commons?--Kai3952 (talk) 11:03, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

@Kai3952: Not without the permission of the artist or artists who painted the mountains, water, and tree until 50pma per COM:CRT#Republic of China (Taiwan).   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 13:34, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
So what do you mean?--Kai3952 (talk) 14:23, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
@Kai3952: Some person or persons painted that artwork on a flat side of a structure in Taiwan. Obviously, that artwork was published as soon as the public could see it. They hold copyright on that artwork until 50 years after their death. If you can get their permission via OTRS, the file can be uploaded upon approval. Until then, please do not upload it until their copyright expires.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 15:05, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

File:Looking up the exterior of Taoyuan Public Library Lunggang Branch.jpg[edit]

"File:Looking up the exterior of Taoyuan Public Library Lunggang Branch.jpg" was submitted for deletion. What I want to ask is: Please take a look at "the original version". It is a bulding, and not 2D art-work. Why would it need to be deleted for?--Kai3952 (talk) 13:22, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

@Kai3952: You had not yet blurred it.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 13:36, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
Please tell me, where do you want me to blur it?--Kai3952 (talk) 14:15, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
✓  Done Old version hidden, DR closed. Yann (talk) 14:55, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
@Kai3952: You already blurred it, no problem.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 15:08, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

File:Entrance sign at Datun Nature Park in Sanzhi.jpg[edit]

I don't understand why this file("File:Entrance sign at Datun Nature Park in Sanzhi.jpg") was submitted for deletion. Is it because there is a logo on the entrance sign?--Kai3952 (talk) 14:43, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

@Kai3952: Yes, but Yann wrote that the logo is DM.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 15:10, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
Could you explain more clearly what "DM" means?--Kai3952 (talk) 16:26, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
It stands for "de minimis". This is explained at Commons:De minimis. --bjh21 (talk) 16:32, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

What is the correct method to upload an image of an artwork, when I am the author of the image and I have also collaborated on the art work?[edit]


upload of an image I have taken was recently rejected.


For the proof / source (in the permissions letter) I sent the url, where my name is mentioned and the same image that I have taken is displayed.

The copyright of the art work is owned by Juha van Ingen, but I have of course his permission to share the image, and I helped to create the displayed piece.

Do you need to have the written permission from Juha van Ingen, or from me, in order to store that image on Wikimedia Commons? Or should Juha upload the image and then have the permission from me to have the image on Commons??? I understood the wording of the permissions letter that it's enough for me to give you the source for the image, along with obvious credentials displaying my name as one of the creators of the piece.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Jsrkel (talk • contribs) 14:53, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
Hi, I restored the file, as there is a {{OTRS pending}}. Regards, Yann (talk) 14:57, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

File:Eduardo Txillida.jpg[edit]

File:Eduardo Txillida.jpg appears to be a photograph made by someone other than the uploader (Xabier Armendaritz), with no clear justification for the {{cc-by-sa-3.0}} licence. The source webpage does not indicate that this is a free image. However, the website conditions of use (in Spanish) may allow us to keep this image.

  • La persona usuaria manifiesta expresamente que dispone de las autorizaciones necesarias para la obtención, tratamiento, uso y explotación de la imagen de terceras personas, en caso de que éstas consten en las fotografías. Y que dichas autorizaciones han sido efectuadas sin limitación territorial ni temporal, permitiendo en cualquier caso la reproducción, total o parcial, la comunicación pública y distribución de las imágenes, con los únicos límites previstos en la Ley Orgánica 1/1982, de 5 de Mayo, de Protección Civil al Derecho al Honor, la Intimidad Personal y familiar y a la Propia Imagen y la legislación sobre propiedad intelectual.

Google Translate renders this as:

  • The user expressly states that they have the necessary authorizations to obtain, process, use and exploit the image of third parties, if they are included in the photographs. And that these authorizations have been made without territorial or temporal limitation, allowing in any case the reproduction, total or partial, public communication and distribution of the images, with the only limits provided for in Organic Law 1/1982, of May 5 , of Civil Protection to the Right to Honor, Personal and Family Intimacy and to the Own Image and the legislation on intellectual property.

The website appears to be published by the w:es:Diputación Foral de Guipúzcoa, which is a part of the regional government. Is this sufficient to keep the image, and if so which licence tags should be used? Verbcatcher (talk) 16:03, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Extent of {{GODL-India}}[edit]

Can {{GODL-India}} be applied to any of the following scenarios?

  1. Pictures tweeted by official handles of Indian government agencies or organizations such as Indian Navy. Attribution is not always provided in these cases [2] [3], so the sourcing may be unclear. However, attribution for pictures sourced from elsewhere seems to be provided [4] [5].
  2. Pictures from archived versions of Government of India websites such as [6]. As far as I know, there is no date of entry into force or a cut-off date for GODL-India.
  3. Pictures from Government of India websites without a sentence similar to "Material featured on this site may be reproduced free of charge in any format or media without requiring specific permission" in their copyright policy, such as DRDO or websites without an explicit copyright policy such as Sainik Samachar. Both the agencies are funded by the Government of India through the Ministry of Defence.
  4. Pictures from other websites with an attribution provided to an agency of Government of India, such as this article with photo attribution to en:DRDO.

Gazoth (talk) 19:16, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Hi, I would be quite wary of using this for pictures from Tweeter, unless it is really obvious that only the government could have made them. Regards, Yann (talk) 20:32, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
I understand, the lack of attribution might make it more trouble than it is worth. —Gazoth (talk) 23:14, 18 June 2018 (UTC)
Unlike OGL, GODL-I is not a website/provider specific license. It applies to all government works just like work of the United States government. So whatever terms they mentioned in each site is not relevant and mostly outdated. You're right; there is no date of entry into force or a cut-off date for it. But we should be careful as it is difficult to separate own and third-party works from their twitter and similar accounts. We can find original source files in their PIB or department level sites. For "Pictures from other websites with an attribution provided to an agency of Government of India", it is better to find the original source and upload from there. Jee 10:46, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
Thank you. —Gazoth (talk) 14:55, 19 June 2018 (UTC)

Copyright Confusion[edit]

Hello, I recently uploaded many pictures on Wikimedia Commons, but some of them have been nominated for deletion. Those pictures are all screenshots from a Youtube video which shows that it is under Creative Commons 3.0. The text on the video says "Do Not Re-upload" but it is released under CC 3.0 so I'm confused now. Clicking on the license under the video takes one to this page where it says "By marking your original video with a Creative Commons license, you are granting the entire YouTube community the right to reuse and edit that video." The other videos on the Youtube channel also show the same Creative Commons licencing so this cannot be a mistake. Hence, shouldn't I be allowed to upload screenshots from the video onto Wikimedia Commons since it has been released under CC-BY-SA? Jesstan01 (talk) 00:45, 19 June 2018 (UTC)

Forbidding reupload is a direct contradiction of the Creative Commons license and actually sounds more like an "All Rights Reserved" type license. While Creative Commons license are irrevocable this type of conflict indicates that the person never fully understood what they were doing when they clicked the "Creative Commons" box in their settings (it is a one-click and done option which explains why all the videos are like that). When there is a direct conflict between copyright licenses and we don't know which is correct a precautionary deletion of the file is generally the course we take. --Majora (talk) 00:58, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
@Majora: I spoke to an Agent from BugabooTV and he told me that it was okay to upload screenshots from the video. Proof 1, Proof 2, Proof 3. Does this perhaps clear the confusion? Jesstan01 (talk) 23:35, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
Well no. First of all, all copyright releases like that would have to go through our COM:OTRS system. And second, "for use on Wikipedia/Commons" is not an acceptable release. There is obviously a language barrier there but they explicitly said the video was copyrighted and only implied that it could be uploaded without any indication as to a license agreement or what is acceptable and what isn't. How many screenshots? Are there further restrictions? Can the screenshots be modified? There are a host of questions there that were not answered and ample evidence that there are large problems with the images (ie. "we do not allow it because it is copyrighted ch7"). If you want to go down this road we would need a release form that explicitly states what parts are being released and under what license sent into OTRS. Sorry, I know that seems like a lot but that is standard procedure around here. --Majora (talk) 23:40, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
@Majora: But wasn't the confusion regarding whether the channel understood what they were doing when they clicked the Creative Commons box? The Agent clearly said that this video can be uploaded. If you see the chat again, he said the "we do not allow it because it is copyrighted ch7" about full-length videos, which this is not, since he confirmed it twice that this video can be uploaded. I quote "If it is a short video, we are allowed. This video you can upload." I've uploaded many other screenshots from videos released under CC and it's never been an issue. This video has been released under Creative Commons and based on the chat, it's obvious that the CC license wasn't incorrectly put there since he said that the video can be re-uploaded. Why is anything more required? Jesstan01 (talk) 00:25, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
But it is not a Creative Commons license. Disallowing the complete reupload of the material is in direct contradiction to the CC terms. They can't have it both ways. The entire thing is either CC or none of it is. If they want to explicitly release specific frames of the video that is their prerogative but they would have to do that in a verifiable manner, via our OTRS system. --Majora (talk) 00:28, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
@Majora: But the Agent never said that complete re-upload of the material is not allowed? He said "This video you can upload" about the video I had used. The entire thing is CC. He never said that only specific frames can be used. The video link which I had sent him in the chat is the same video link that I sourced in those images uploaded on Commons. So we have both the CC license of the video as well as confirmation that the CC is valid. Is that not sufficient? Jesstan01 (talk) 01:39, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
If it is a full video, we do not allow it because it is copyrighted ch7. That statement could not be any clearer. If you don't think that says what it clearly says then you obviously linked me to the wrong conversation. Listen, I already told you that there is enough ambiguity there to cause problems. I already told you how to rectify those problems. Continuing to argue the other way isn't going to change my opinion on the matter. --Majora (talk) 01:43, 20 June 2018 (UTC)
@Majora: He wrote that statement at the same time as when I sent that link. He was not referring to my video link when he said “If...”. He literally said “This video you can upload” right after that. Did you perhaps miss that? He confirmed that the video was available for use under the CC license. There is a CC license and a confirmation for that license. Your last statement shows that no matter what I say, you’re not willing to consider it. You’ve already made up your mind. For my own satisfaction, I’ll contact them again. Jesstan01 (talk) 03:02, 20 June 2018 (UTC)

Angeline Stickney[edit]

Hi, I was wondering about the image of Angeline Stickney Hall (died 1892) found on the navy website is it a free image? or can I use the image from this book which is said to be in the public domain? what license should I use? thanks Golan's mom (talk) 20:38, 19 June 2018 (UTC)

The book was published in the US; use a PD-1923 license on it.--Prosfilaes (talk) 20:43, 19 June 2018 (UTC)
אמא של גולן: I've uploaded File:Angeline Stickney.jpg from the book An astronomer's wife; the biography of Angeline Hall for you. Ww2censor (talk) 10:15, 20 June 2018 (UTC)


Can Commons keep this photo of 2018 World Cup mascot en:Zabivaka? The Commons file is being shadowed by the non-free en:File:Zabivaka.jpg, which would no longer be needed if the free version is OK. The Commons were a photo of the mascot imagery, and it doesn't seem to be a case of COM:DM. It also might be possibly seen as a photo of a 3D work of art, though I think the installation is only temporary and likely to be removed once the World Cup has ended. I think the photo can be released under a CC license, but not sure whether the mascot image can. -- Marchjuly (talk) 20:16, 20 June 2018 (UTC)

File:Prothonotary warbler (Protonotaria citrea).webm[edit]

Such cases always confuse me. This is work of an US Gov. agency, so shouldn't {{cc-by-2.0}} be removed? I know the concept of multi-licencing, but IMO mixing a free, but non-PD licence (well, actually any non-PD licence) with a PD licence just doesn't make sense. --jdx Re: 17:20, 21 June 2018 (UTC)

PD licenses aren't necessarily PD world-wide. US government works have a slightly unclear position outside the US; back in the 1970s, the US asked an international group how they would treat an attempt to enforce US government copyright (on works PD-USGov in the US) outside the US. The rule of the shorter term is not as universal as we'd like, so except on a very old, not PD-Art, work, a proper free license (or even semi-free license) could help in some cases.--Prosfilaes (talk) 22:00, 21 June 2018 (UTC)


This Image is marked as own work, but it's actually just a slightly of File:Carina_Nebula.jpg
— Preceding unsigned comment added by Das wollige Wollschwein (talk • contribs) 18:08, 21 June 2018 (UTC)
✓  Done Deleted. Yann (talk) 00:21, 22 June 2018 (UTC)

File:BBFC 15.svg[edit]

I'm wondering if this symbol is really too simple to be eligible for copyright protection per COM:TOO#United Kingdom. I'm also curious about the copyright mark (c 2002) being show in the symbol. File:BBFC 15 2002.png is listed as another version of this file, but I think there is quite a big difference in the complexity of design when considering the UK's TOO, so not sure they should be treated the same with respect to copyright status. See Commons:Deletion requests/File:BBFC 18.svg for what appears to be a similar file deleted for this very reason. -- Marchjuly (talk) 00:54, 22 June 2018 (UTC)

File:BBFC_15_2002.png is almost certainly below TOO even in UK. On other hand File:BBFC 15.svg is probably above. Ruslik (talk) 19:33, 22 June 2018 (UTC)

Old public domain images on Pixabay[edit]

While reviewing Pixabay uploads, I came across File:Vintage image of steam train.jpg, which certainly looks too old for the Pixabay user to have created it. After a bit of searching, I found this, which indicates the image was originally published in the US in 1870. Would it be appropriate to replace the Pixabay tag with {{PD-1923}} and add the original source info, or should I just review it as-is with {{subst:PBLR}}? clpo13(talk) 18:41, 22 June 2018 (UTC)

The original source should be added with {{PD-1923}}, but the modification is quite substantial, so {{subst:PBLR}} would also be good. Regards, Yann (talk) 18:53, 22 June 2018 (UTC)
The original is by Nathaniel Currier (1813–1888) and James Ives (1824–1895). It was published in 1870 so it is in fact PD. I doubt that a monochrome version is enough of a derivative to spark a new copyright, so {{PD-old-100-1923}} should be ok. De728631 (talk) 18:59, 22 June 2018 (UTC)
Thanks Yann and De728631. There's another monochrome version from the Library of Congress at File:The express train LCCN92520194.jpg, so I tagged this one with {{PD-1923}} and put the correct author information. clpo13(talk) 20:39, 22 June 2018 (UTC)
Checkmark This section is resolved and can be archived. If you disagree, replace this template with your comment. clpo13(talk) 04:09, 25 June 2018 (UTC)

Upload Picture, that a person has given me for Wiki Commons[edit]

Hi there, everyone!

I am writing an article about a professor and asked him, whether he could give me a picture of him that I could upload to Wiki Commons, under a CC-License. He gave me the picture and said that he would be fine with the license. Now I have tried using the upload assistant, but I am not sure, how to go about the process, as the questions asked don't match my case. What can I do? Is there some way of proving that I have the consent of my professor?

Many thanks in advance! --StapelChips (talk) 10:29, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

Hello, having the oral authorization of your professor is not enough, he needs to go through the OTRS system to prove he's the author of the picture and that he releases it under a CC-BY-SA (or CC-BY) license. Regards, Skimel (talk) 13:51, 23 June 2018 (UTC)
Hey StapelChips. As Skimel said, usually you need to have the permission sent by the author (photographer), not the subject. The author should send his permission letter to out ticketing system. See OTRS and Email templates for more info. --Mhhossein talk 13:54, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

File:86thStreet- Chuck Close, Subway Portraits (31374025090).jpg[edit]

Is just the permission of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority of the State of New York sufficient for this to be accepted as licensed or is the permission of the artist who painted/created it also needed? It does appear that Chuck Close did this for the MTA [7], but it's not clear if he retained copyright over the various works. The MTA Flicker license might apply to photos taken by it's employees, but at the same time it might not cover any copyrighted images being photographed. -- Marchjuly (talk) 11:15, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

Thanks for bringing this up. As the uploader of this image I didn't notice the exception in COM:FOP#United States earlier. Upon closer inspection, it seems to indicate that copyrighted buildings and structures like subway stations are allowable under copyright law. But the artworks inside these buildings are not allowed by copyright law. If Chuck Close didn't give all his rights to the MTA, I think this image will also need Chuck Close's permission as well. epicgenius (talk) 13:39, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

Hamagelarai's uploads[edit]

Could any one double check the works uploaded by Hamagelarai? They're mostly small files with no meta data. Regards. --Mhhossein talk 13:49, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

Pictogram voting comment.svg  Comment User blocked. Indeed many files from Facebook, and a last warning was previously given. Yann (talk) 13:56, 23 June 2018 (UTC)
Thanks Yann. --Mhhossein talk 05:55, 25 June 2018 (UTC)

Copyright infringement File:Baby Smile.gif[edit]

I suspect that that the uploaded of File:Baby Smile.gif is NOT the copyright holder despite her/his declaration. The description seems to indicate the picture came from Google Images. Bit of research and it seems to be from Shutterstock admittedly royalty free. I am not the copyright holder either but is it reasonable for me object (if so how) and ask for deletion? Or should I try to contact Shutterstock or the true copyright holder and see if they object to it being on Wikimedia?

--Headlock0225 (talk) 16:19, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

@Headlock0225: Copyvio of, tagged as such.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 16:49, 23 June 2018 (UTC)
JFTR “royalty free” means only that you don’t have to pay per use or according to the exposure your publication will give the image. It implies that the work is under a claim of copyright and that a liberal (but not free) licence is available for purchase.—Odysseus1479 (talk) 19:58, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

Very interesting...many thanks Odysseus1479 and Jeff G--Headlock0225 (talk) 20:54, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

@Headlock0225: You're welcome.   — Jeff G. ツ please ping or talk to me 23:11, 23 June 2018 (UTC)


It is a work by the contributor himself, but several image files older than the creation date can be found[8][9]. I also wonder if it falls under the Creative Commons license. It is not a photograph taken by an ordinary person but it can only be seen as a clip of a magazine or a profile picture of an office.--CODE1999 (talk) 16:46, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

This probably needs a WP:OTRS confirmation. Ruslik (talk) 19:36, 23 June 2018 (UTC)
I marked it as needing permission. seb26 (talk) 03:40, 24 June 2018 (UTC)
Thank you very much.CODE1999 (talk) 12:57, 24 June 2018 (UTC)

File:Taipei Bridge Station Public Art.jpg[edit]

Does this picture violate copyright?--Kai3952 (talk) 17:55, 23 June 2018 (UTC)

COM:FOP#Taiwan (Republic of China). There's freedom of panorama in Taiwan for outdoor 3D works, but not for indoor or 2D works. clpo13(talk) 19:40, 23 June 2018 (UTC)