Commons talk:Licensing/Archive 4

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"Photographs of normal people who have not given their consent".[edit]

Are there exceptions for crowds at e.g. protests. I took these photos and want to upload it to commons for w:February 15, 2003 anti-war protest. -- Jeandré, 2006-05-07t09:19z

Initially I'd say it's ok because it is not any person that is the subject of the photo, but the crowd. Most people are also slightly disguised with sunglasses/caps (except one notable exception of the girl on the bottom right). If your photos have a much higher resolution, I'd suggest decreasing it into a size not much greater than the one on the linked page. So upload it. Possibly someone will nominated it for deletion afterwards, but we'll deal with that then... / Fred Chess 09:48, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
I would say it's 100% fine at any res. If you're choosing to participate in a rally, you're choosing to make yourself a public figure. pfctdayelise (translate?) 11:28, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
Yes in this case you're really safe uploading this picture in any resolution (so upload as high resolution as possible) as in case of a demonstration you're almost automatically a temporarily important person for the duration of the demonstration (another example would be if you save the life of another person people are allowed to publish pictures about that without your consent). In Germany for example this term is accurately called "relative Person der Zeitgeschichte" and is explicitly written down in laws. I very sure that very similar law terms exist in many other nations. Arnomane 12:01, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
Can we add "People protesting" under Commons:Licensing#Checklist Questionable, may or may not be OK:, and add ", unless at a protest" to "Photographs of normal people who have not given their consent" under Definitely not OK? -- Jeandré, 2006-05-21t10:41z

I've uploaded an image that I wonder if it might be a problem: Image:CommonGroundLow9t10Jan06A.jpg While the people were not intended to be the subject of the photo and it was taken from a public street, the faces of two people are visable and I did not get any explicit permission to use their images. Should I delete this image, and perhaps reupload it with the figures at the right cropped out? -- Infrogmation 11:11, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

I'd call it a borderline case - the faces are small and dark, and if this is some type of "domonstration", the image would be ok anyway. Also, images taken in public in the US are generally ok, even if faces can be recognizable, afaik (the EU has tricter rules). But anyway - maybe just ask? -- Duesentrieb(?!) 11:23, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

Consent: do we need the subject's consent in writing? Rklawton 02:34, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

What about public performances? I never considered performers to be "normal people"... On a related note, I'd list "People protesting" under the "street performances" category. Also, I think the privacy laws in the U.S. are really minimal. Rklawton 02:42, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

Russia: the rules listed for Russia seem to apply to government produced material. What are the rules regarding public/private property/people? Rklawton 02:42, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

Are the "no private people" in public rules really that strict in the U.S.? I thought the U.S. had a pretty much "all is fair" policy for any person (private or otherwise) appearing in a public place. Can someone point me to further reading on this? Rklawton 02:42, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

I read the external link to Krages' page on photographer's rights, and it seems that in the U.S. private people can be photographed in public places (restrooms, etc., do not count as public places). I realize this significantly differs from the EU. The policy regarding "normal persons" without consent appears unnecessarily restrictive - at least as far as the U.S. goes. Is Wikimedia setting a higher standard, or is this just an oversight? Rklawton 03:13, 31 May 2006 (UTC)
  • I think this part of the policy is overly strict. I do not know the laws of all countries around the world, but in the US (where our main servers are based), you may photograph any person in any public place at any time, without any consent from them. I would like to remove this line from the policy. Johntex 15:11, 8 July 2006 (UTC)

Soviet images[edit]

Please see Template talk:PD-Soviet... Lupo 09:09, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

Image:Wilson opening day 1916.jpg[edit]

When reading given link to congress page and rights link there is says:

"The Library of Congress is providing access to these materials for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other rights holders (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use or other statutory exemptions."

So no for commons? But image is quite old, does it belong to {{pd-old}}?

Those terms of use are clearly not compatible with commons policy. It could be PD because of age, if the photographer has been dead for more than 70 years (PD-old), or it has first been published in the US before 1923 (PD-US); the latter seems likely, but PD-US has come under debate time and time agin, because it's unclear if works that are in the public domain in the US, and where first published in the US, are automatically PD world wide. For one such debate, see #Which_copyright_law_applies? above. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 15:05, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
If published in the United States before 1923, "PD-US" is appropriate. I presume the LOC disclaimer is their standard text for their collection of photos of various ages. When an image such as this is already in the public domain, the association of the image with such text does not change the PD-US status of the image. -- Infrogmation 18:35, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
This particular image is OK. If you go to the LoC's image description page, you'll see that they state "no known restrictions on publication", which is their usual way of saying "we've looked at this item's copyright status and we think it's PD". Tag as {{PD-LOC}} (which needs rephrasing, though; see its talk page). Lupo 11:44, 30 May 2006 (UTC)
To Düsentrieb: pre-1923 images are PD in the U.S., but not necessarily in other countries. For instance, Germany has had a bilateral treaty with the U.S. governing copyright since January 15, 1892. That treaty, which is still in effect, defined that a U.S. work was copyrighted in Germany according to German law irrespective of the work's copyright status in the U.S, and it did not contain a "rule of the shorter term". In one case, a German court therefore decided that a U.S. work that had fallen into the public domain in the U.S. was still copyrighted in Germany in 2003. (That case is about a post-1923 work, though.) Lupo 11:44, 30 May 2006 (UTC)
Just to clarify: I believe U.S. works that were published before 1923 are in the public domain in other countries where the rule of the shorter term applies. The problem with Germany is that apparently that rule does not apply there (despite §7(1) of the EU Copyright Directive) because that old bilateral treaty is still in force. I don't know what other bilateral copyright treaties of the U.S. with other countries defined. Lupo 13:24, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

Questions: attributions and commercial use[edit]

  • I'm having a hard time determining with any degree of certainty whether any of the Commons-compatible licenses require original author attributions for all derivative works. If I'm forced to use a free license, I'd at least want attributions for derivative works that substantially resemble the original. (i.e., I don't want somebody to make barely noticeable changes and then claim the work for themselves.) Does “Attribution share alike 2.5” do this?
  • The commercial use requirement doesn't make much sense to me, frankly. I'd prefer to license my images for use on Wikipedia and for Wikipedia-specific related projects only. For example, a license that allows for Wiki print editions and non-English Wiki use, but does NOT allow a commercial travel agency to use my images in brochures or other marketing material without my explicit permission. What's the rationale for requiring completely free licensing, as opposed to a license that allows for Wikipedia and related entities only?

Thank you -- moondigger 01:02, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

Quite a few sites flat out copy Wikipedia's content. Once these sites figure out how to copy images while maintaining attribution and licensing information, many will do that as well. The idea is to contribute to human knowledge for use in any way. Limiting use to Wikipedia would defeat that purpose. At least, them's my two bits. Believe me, I ain't doin' this for the love of JimBo. Rklawton 04:14, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
Moondigger: Attribution ShareAlike would suit you, yes. Or GFDL. GFDL explicitly requires a history of revisions to be kept. But I personally recommend Creative Commons.
To understand the importance of allowing commercial use, I suggest you read this post by Jimbo: [1]. pfctdayelise (translate?) 05:27, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

Rklawton and Pfctdayelise: Thank you for your replies. A few points in response.

I'm in total agreement on the "contribute to human knowledge..." idea. Heck, that's why I'm willing to license my writing on Wikipedia under GFDL. I have deep knowledge on some topics and shallow (but useful) knowledge on many others. Much of that knowledge was obtained for free, and I have no qualms about giving back. However, when it comes to my photographs, things are a little different. First, because in most cases they aren't really 'rote knowledge' per se; they're artistic expressions. Second, because quite frankly it isn't the poor that will benefit from free commercial licensing of them; it's unscrupulous, already 'rich' (by most standards) established businesses that are most likely to grab them and throw them into a brochure or advertisement that serves not to increase human knowledge, but to effect maximum profit without fair compensation to the creator of the image.

Now, if this all seems just a little bit cynical, I apologize. My cynicism is based on real-life considerations.

In the end I realize that the Wiki policy requiring free commercial licensing of photographic images will not be changed simply because I want it to. But because of that, the photographs I contribute will be considerably lower resolution than my originals. They'll serve perfectly well as visual illustrations on the articles they adorn, but I'm sure-as-heck not going to make it easy for somebody to build a full-page ad out of one.

Thanks again for your input. --moondigger 06:10, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

Bingo. I do that and use the ShareAlike license (2.5). I either get free advertising, or I get paid. Rklawton 07:52, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
while we of course prefer high resolution images, you aproach is perfectly legit. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 08:43, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
At first. Licenses like CC-BY-SA require to name the authors. That said if someone absolutely wants to make a bad modification to some image of you he has to state all authors (also himself) and that way people can see that it is not you who is responsible for that bad image.
The next point is if Mr. Foobar wants to print your images on a magazine everyone is allowed to do the same and of course he also needs to give every interested person a digital copy of that very content. I am sure that normal magazine people don't want such a deal. They ask for "usual conditions" and "how much $".
And of course who makes the best reuse of Wikimedia content? I'd say commercial projects rooted in the community. The German Wikipedia DVD and topic books out of de.wikipedia content were only possible because some enthusiastic people including an enthusiastic company just wanted it. See de:Wikipedia:Wikipedia-Distribution and de:Wikipedia:WikiPress. For example I have compiled a book about the solar system, see de:Wikipedia:WikiReader/Sonnensystem (full PDF version is downloadable there of course too). So I really see the high value of free modification that gives me the power of creativity doing something cool which wasn't initially anticipated.
And of course there's one central sentence "Assume good faith"... Arnomane 09:25, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
I very much agree with Moondigger here. Many able photographers won't publish under a totally free licence, because they are either on principle against others making a profit from their work, or, more likely, want to have a share if profit is being made from their work. As a result the quality of images (and works in general) on the commons suffer because of that insistence on always allowing for-profit use. Jensbn 12:29, 8 September 2006 (UTC)

But noncommercial images seem to be allowed now: See Template:Deletion_requests#Image:Vigeland_stampvoetend_jochie.jpg - this image can not be used commercially, but is still kept at Commons. Does the keeping of this NC image imply that NC images now are allowed at Commons? Kjetil_r 18:28, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

The problem in this case is: where does this restriction come from? Does the creator of the sculpture have a right to the image? If yes, we can not vote about it, we have to ask him. If not, where comes the restriction from then? We need more information about local law. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 20:18, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
Also - a questionable image that was kept after debate does not signify a change in policy. -- Duesentrieb(?!) 20:19, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
Information about the local law? We have. It is linked to from the debate. The use of such an image can not be commercial unless the crator agrees - and he has not agreed.
Why does not this keep signify a policy change - the arguments of the users wanting to keep it were like "I didn't think Wikipedia was commercial?" and "Images on Wikimedia projects are not 'supposed' to be used for commercial purposes". If this debate is ended now with the outcome "kept", it will indirectly say that NC material is allowed. Kjetil_r 22:04, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
I have now raised this issue at Commons:Village_pump#the_keeping_of_a_photo_which_can_not_be_used_commercially - we should discuss it further there. Kjetil_r 23:13, 3 June 2006 (UTC)


See Template:SocEur. The template claims that (some of) the images from can be used freely, but the website does not mention this. There is a dodgy permission at en:Template talk:SocEur, but I do not really belive that «Mehdi» holds the copyright to the images. Should I list this template and the images using it at Commons:deletion requests? Kjetil_r 00:41, 25 May 2006 (UTC)

That permission is very unclear, since this is very clear:

"Use of images for commercial purposes is strictly prohibited.".

The template must be redirected to {{noncommercial}} Sanbec 09:02, 25 May 2006 (UTC)

The wikipedia user claims to be the webmaster of, and he does write that some of his images can be freely used.
But I frankly do not belive that he is the sole copyright holder of these images. He refuses to reveal the sources of the images, so I do not think we should accept his images in Commons because of the lack of evidence. Kjetil_r 10:08, 25 May 2006 (UTC)

Goddard Space Flight Center photos PD?[edit]

I'd like to upload some of these pictures on coral bleaching from the Goddard Space Flight Center: for use in the wikipedia coral bleaching and GBR articles. Do these photos fall under {{PDNASA}}??

Follow the "Help" link in the header of the site you mentioned, then click on "Information on using information from this site", and then on "Copyrights and Credits". There, you find the following copyright statement: "Some SVS images produced in collaboration with other labs have distinct copyrights. For those instances, the copyright notices are noted on the page with the image. For all other images obtained from this site, please give credit to: NASA - Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio." No other lab is mentioned on the pages with the images you are interested in, so I assume them to be NASA-PD. --Vesta 07:29, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Taken from inside train stations in Germany[edit]

Recently some images from within train station in Germany were kept. But I'm not confident about it, and would like more comments. Here is the deletion debate:

This deletion debate is now closed. Please do not make any edits to this archive. You can read the deletion policy or ask a question at the Village pump. If the circumstances surrounding this file have changed in a notable manner, you may re-nominate this file or ask for it to be undeleted.

Image:Berlin Hauptbahnhof pano 06.jpg[edit]

Es liegt keine Genehmigung der DB AG vor Marcela 20:45, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

Translation: No permission was given by the German Railway. Shaqspeare 10:10, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
  • Update: I now do have permission (in fact a release for the image) from Deutsche Bahn AG. Ideally Deletion Request should be terminated, but I guess people are coming up with new reasons every day. I requested a release from the architects. Let's see if they can be bothered to answer, with all the media attention they got. --Dschwen 16:11, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
  • It's a public building (open to the general public), no permission is needed from Deutsche Bahn. Keep. Angr 22:07, 4 June 2006 (UTC)
  • Warum sollte man dafür eine brauchen? Keep 06:05, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
  • It's an interior of a private building, not a public space (Öffentlicher Raum) as understood by German law. So it isn't a subject of Panoramafreiheit. It's only proper when you stand on public ground. Deutsche Bahn is a company (though still owned by the state). Shaqspeare 10:10, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
    • Still, we can ask for permission.Shaqspeare 11:11, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

Fotos von Bahnhöfen (innen) unterliegen nicht der Panoramafreiheit 13:56, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

  • Genau, Bahnhofsbilder dürfen nur nach schriftlicher Genehmigung der Deutschen Bahn veröffentlicht werden. Die Meinung, das ein Bahnhof ein "Öffentlicher Platz" ist, ist falsch. Bahnhöfe sind nicht öffentlich, sondern gehören der DB, somit darf (wie in einem privaten Garten) nur nach Genehmigung des Besitzers fotografiert werden. Delete --RvM 06:55, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
  • If this and the above case really are a violation of Deutsche Bahn's copyright, then we need a general policy at Commons, not just a vote on these two images. There must be hundreds of photographs of the insides of buildings that will have to be deleted if these count as copyvios. Just to take some examples from the gallery of the nominator, User:Marcela: if these pictures of Berlin Hauptbahnhof are copyvios, then so are the following pictures of his:
  1. Image:Sekt-im-supermarkt.jpg
  2. Image:Obst-supermarkt.jpg
  3. Image:Kaese-supermarkt.jpg
  4. Image:Fleischtheke-supermarkt.jpg
  5. Image:Fett-supermarkt.jpg
  6. Image:Bier-im-supermarkt.jpg
  7. Image:Spirituosen-im-supermarkt.jpg
  8. Image:Obst-im-supermarkt.jpg
And indeed virtually every picture taken indoors. Angr 20:58, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
Yes but the supermarket interior is a kind of "trivial work". The station isn't. Shaqspeare 21:22, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
I don't see that the supermarket interior is any more trivial than the train station. Angr 22:13, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
It is. The way of displaying cheese in the supermarket isn't a subject of copyright in most cases. A photo of it is not recogniseble for both the author and location of what it is depicting - that's why its subject should be classified as trivial. Anybody in any place can put some cheese together in a cupboard. A photo of whole supermarket interior would be of course just the same as the photo of the station. The foto of some cheese is just like a photo of some part of the regular track. Shaqspeare 23:50, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
What about the REWE logos and the merchandise lables? They sure are not free and there certainly is no "Panoramafreiheit" in a supermarket. --Dschwen 07:04, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
The REWE logos etc. are a matter of trade marks (Markenzeichen), not copyright. That's an entirely different thing. We're talking about copyright here. And you're right, there is no Panoramafreiheit inside buildings. All German speakers, please read de:Panoramafreiheit and de:Wikipedia:Bilder von fremdem Eigentum before closing the discussion. --Fb78 12:44, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Trademarks (Markenzeichen) are copyrighted, so they are relevant to this discussion. Photographs of the REWE trademarks and other trademarks are copyvios, regardless of whether they are photographed indoors or outdoors. Angr 22:06, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Trademarks != Copyright, Angr. Please read some basic information about the topic. --Fb78 10:50, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
Für die Bilder im Supermarkt liegt eine Genehmigung der Geschäftsleitung vor. Yo tengo permiso por los fotos dentro del supermercado REWE Marcela 14:14, 22 June 2006 (UTC)
Keep. This request is close to frivolous. Kph 09:04, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
Keep---Nina- 10:21, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
I formally requested permission now. Would have been nice to be notified of this deletion-request in advance anyway... --Dschwen 16:56, 6 June 2006 (UTC)

Please do also consider the architect's copyright in this case. This should be our biggest concern. --Fb78 19:37, 6 June 2006 (UTC)

Keep, await the reply to Dschwen's permission request. (I assume it will be granted) In my opinion there is no further need for discussion as we will doubtlessly have to accept the decision of the DB. ASM 09:53, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

The architect's copyright are the drawings of the building. Buildings are free to photo and this are a pubilc building too. ---Nina- 10:23, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

It's obvious you don't know what you are talking about. Buildings are not "free to photo". A building is treated equal to a sculpture or any other work of art: You always need the creator's permission to distribute photos of it. Any architect does hold the copyright to the building created from the plans. See the Louvre Pyramid discussion, see the Atomium discussion. Do you get that?
Now there's one exception to the rule, called de:Panoramafreiheit in German. This exception allows you to publish photos of permanently installed works that are taken from public grounds.
In this case, the picture was not taken from public grounds, but from inside the building, which is private property of the Deutsche Bahn AG. No matter what the Deutsche Bahn AG says about taking pictures of train stations, it is a violation of the architect's copyright. If you say it isn't or just wish it weren't so, you simply don't know what you're talking about. --Fb78 12:39, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
In my country, Norway you are free to take pictures of buildings: Lovdata § 24. Byggverk kan fritt avbildes. And there are no limitations taking pictures inside the building. But i would put the name of the architect in the photo page. You have the same CONSOLIDATED ACT ON COPYRIGHT 2003* 24.–(3) Buildings may be freely reproduced in pictorial form and then made available to the public.---Nina- 13:26, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
OK, but the picture was taken in Germany, not in Norway. German UrhG §59 says: "Zulässig ist, Werke, die sich bleibend an öffentlichen Wegen, Straßen oder Plätzen befinden, mit Mitteln der Malerei oder Graphik, durch Lichtbild oder durch Film zu vervielfältigen, zu verbreiten und öffentlich wiederzugeben. Bei Bauwerken erstrecken sich diese Befugnisse nur auf die äußere Ansicht." My translation: "It is allowed with the means of painting, graphics, photography or film to copy, distribute and publish works that are permanently installed at public streets, roads or places. For buildings, this is only vaild for the exterior view." See also de:Panoramafreiheit. --Fb78 13:40, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
So does this in fact mean that no photographs taken indoors in Germany can be used on Commons unless the architect has been dead for at least 70 years? That's going to be a lot of pictures to delete, I think! What about Image:Green-eyed cat.jpg and Image:Angr.jpg? They were both taken indoors in Germany, and I don't know if the architect has been dead for 70 years. Do these images violate the architect's copyright under German law? Angr 22:10, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Of course not, please use some common sense. The pictures you mentioned do not show the architecture, but a person and a cat. We're talking about pictures that are intented to show the architecture itself. And they're only a problem if the architecture is actually creative enough to be copyrightable. FMany buildings are probably not copyrightable, but the Berlin Hauptbahnhof certainly is. Its architect, gmp, is currently suing the Deutsche Bahn for making changes to their architectural plans - that's a copyright violation as well. --Fb78 10:52, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
So I don't have to worry if I just say the intent of Image:BlnHauptbahnhof34.jpg is to show a large number of people, a dog, and a train? Angr 15:26, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
That's not something you decide. If the photographer is sued by the architect, the judge will have to decide whether the image intends to show the architecture or something else. All you can do is guess. Or look for older verdicts that can be used as a reference. Wikipedia is a pretty good start for some basic information on copyright. --Fb78 15:53, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
I am the photographer of Image:BlnHauptbahnhof34.jpg. Angr 19:56, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
That doesn't matter. The judge won't care what your intention was, she will decide from the picture if it shows copyrighted material or not. --Fb78 10:50, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
  • I just got a friendly mail from Deutsche Bahn AG: zu Ihrer u. a. Anfrage erteilen wir Ihnen hiermit gern die Freigabe. Bitte melden, falls Sie darüber hinaus noch ein besonderes Dokument benötigen.. Translation: we happily grant you a release/clearance. And they offer to provide it in writing. Now I'm happy with this email as far as it was DB property I took the picture on. The next mail will go Meinhard von Gerkan. Lets see how he replies. --Dschwen 12:38, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
Permission is irrelevant, isn't it? As I understand it, Wikimedia projects can't use copyrighted images "by permission". An image at Commons has to be completely free, not used by permission. Angr 09:20, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
You are interpreting. Neither did I use the word permission nor did I state it was for Wikimedia Projects exclusively. --Dschwen 16:02, 8 June 2006 (UTC)

I am in doubt that Bahn AG has the right to allow to use the work of the architect to everyone by allowing putting a picture on commons. --Historiograf 20:09, 9 June 2006 (UTC)

Fb78, are you sure that this image counts as an indoor image? I consider it to be outdoors and I wouldn't consider this to be a building -- more like a construction.... Is it a building because it has a roof? Then a bus shelter would be a building. / Fred Chess 11:07, 15 July 2006 (UTC)

Kept. — Erin (talk) 08:58, 18 July 2006 (UTC)

Fred Chess 11:57, 4 August 2006 (UTC)


According to According to Law of 22 April 1941 n. 633, revised by the law of 22 May 2004, n. 128: Article 11 State ownership of copyrights

  • Italiano: "Alle amministrazioni dello stato, [al partito nazionale fascista], alle provincie ed ai comuni spetta il diritto di autore sulle opere create e pubblicate sotto il loro nome ed a loro conto e spese." [2]
  • English: "Copyright in works created and published under the name and at the expense of the State, the Provinces or the Communes shall belong to them."
(Source: Unesco translation of 2003 version of the statute)

Article 29 concerning duration of copyright for 1) Italian state, province or commune, 2) National Fascist Party, 3) Public Cultural and non profit companies:

  • Italiano: "La durata dei diritti esclusivi di utilizzazione economica spettanti, a termini dell'art. 11, alle amministrazioni dello stato, al partito nazionale fascista, alle provincie, ai comuni, alle accademie, agli enti pubblici culturali nonché agli enti privati che non perseguano scopi di lucro, è di vent'anni a partire dalla prima pubblicazione, qualunque sia la forma nella quale la pubblicazione è stata effettuata. [3]"
  • English: The duration of the exploitation rights belonging, under art. 11, to the State, the provinces, the communes, the academies or public cultural organizations, or to private legal entities of a non-profit making character, shall be twenty years from first publication, whatever the form in which publication was effected."
(Source: Unesco translation of 2003 version. Note however that the 2004 version now also includes "al partito nazionale fascista"- the National Fascist party.)

Regardless of the contract with the photographer, so long as a work was created under the name, and at the expense of the State, the copyright is property of the Italian Government, not the photographer. Persuant to Article 29, the duration of that copyright is 20 years.

Since the PD-Italy template covers non art images, it is not correct for government images that are over 20 years old. For this reason I have created Template:PD-ItalyGov. Non profits might be included, but the ownership is not as clear in Article 88 as it is in article 11. This means in the case of non profits and the somewhat vague set of academies and public cultural organizations, an anally robust defence would require documentation that the artist had not retained some rights in their for hire contract. For this reason, I only mention the Italian Government. If there are no objections, I shall add suitable language to the Italian Copyright section of the Commons:Licensing page.

--Mak 05:51, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Read on: Article 32-bis extends the general 20 year period for works in general to 70 years p. m. a. for photos specifically.
  • Italiano: "I diritti di utilizzazione economica dell'opera fotografica durano sino al settantesimo anno dopo la morte dell'autore."
  • English: "The exploitation rights in photographic work shall lapse at the end of the 70th year following the author’s death."
I don't see how these images could have evaded the EU copyright harmonisation. They are not PD and the tag should be deleted again.
--Wikipeder 11:04, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

To drag in my favorite subject :-), would that mean that postage stamps from more than 20 years ago are all PD? They are government works of art, not photographs, although as fiscal instruments, laws sometimes handle them specially. Stan Shebs 14:21, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Yeah Stan- it looks like according to Wikipeder, EU harmonization has to do only with photographs.
Wikipeder- Seriously though- your trump card is nothing of the kind. You would have to explain all the other cases where a 20 year limit is in place- for example the one currently allowed in PD-Italy for simple photographs.
The fact of the matter is that there is wide variance from country to country as noted in the Licensing page. The logic (if there is any) of EU political machinations doesn't matter. What matters is the law on the books in the countries. The law says the author has no exploitation rights in article 11. Author has no standing, no rights to extend from 20 to 70 years.
Additionally, Article 22 emphasizes that "The rights referred to in the preceding Articles shall be inalienable." Article 11 establishes that the State has the copyright. A duration statement in Article 32 cannot be interpretted in taking that copyright away from the state.
Show me where I have erred. -Mak 16:25, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Mak is writing nonsense. Ask Lupo he is the best expert in this field. All authors in the EU have the right that their works are protected 70 years p.m.a. That's the only fact of relevance for us concerning works in the EU countries --Historiograf 19:15, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Ahhh- the old Appeal to authority fallacy. Hey- arguments are unnecessary, we don't have to think or read! Let's just abdicate to self appointed "authorities". Historiograf, I encourage you to educate yourself on this logical fallacy. If you are swayed by fuzzy thinking rather than logic and consideration of law, I observe that Lupo has been debating PD-Soviet for something like a year now. Still it stands as a template. Hmmm.
Nonetheless, you will notice on Lupo's talk page that I invited him to comment on this template about 2 minutes after I created it. I respect him and his input. Respect is a good thing, and you know something? A person cannot run out of it by being generous with it.
Have a nice day. -Mak 19:59, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Mak, you asked me to explain the 20-year limit, suggesting it conflicted with the EU directive:

It's simple photographies that are protected for 20 years in Italy. The EU directive and the Berne Convention only regulate photographic works. There are only a few countries that even make the difference (e. g. not the US, not 20 of the 29 EEA states), in all the others Italian simple photografies are fully copyrighted (70 years p. m. a. in the EEA). Of the few countries that know simple photographies, the threshold is of very different height. In Germany e. g. probably none of the tagged images would even qualify as a simple photography. The 20-year period is an exclusively Italian thing for simple photos, any other, normal, photos are photographic works and are governed by the EU directive and Berne.

The vast majority of images tagged PD-Italy, however, are not even at all documentary images lacking any creativity or other input of the author, which would be required by Italian law to qualify as simple images. They are wrongly tagged. The ones that indeed are simple photographs according to Italian interpretation will still be copyright protected outside of Italy and thus need to be removed from the Commons because they could only be used on the Italian WP. See also here.

You seem to mix up these two fields of legislation when you claim that copyright of the Italian state, non-profit organisations etc. were not regulated by the EU harmonisation. This is not so: It's simple photographies that are not. Normal photographic works—about which this template is—are copyright protected until 70 years after the author's death, no matter who holds the copyright, be it the author, the state or whoever. That's what Art. 32 is saying, but we don't even need that thanks to the EU directive. --Wikipeder 09:01, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Who holds the exploitation rights on Italian state created works after 20 years? Show me where in article 32 the Italian law transferred those rights from the state to the author. I am afraid your position is nonsensical. You are stating there exists exploitation rights that no one- not the state, the author or the public is entitled to exercise. Show me where I have erred.
That would be 8 lines above, your understanding of the second last sentence of my post. --Wikipeder 19:42, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
The EU directive magic wand: Think about what your are saying. You believe your EU directive magic wand means that the laws of countries don't matter. You like Lupo can make the case that Italian law is wrong. Hey, that's pretty bold. More power to you. Write a letter to the Italians and straighten them out. While you are at it, tell them all the other places they are doing things that are not in keeping with UN charter and resolutions. When you are done with that, you can write the various state and provincial legislatures and tell them what laws you feel are unconstutional. That nonsense has no standing here. Here, we go by laws and caselaw. This EU thing is not a law, but the Italian statute on copyright is Law, Italy has jusidiction, and Italian authority, not EU authority is appealed to on Commons Templates. I am unaware of a single PD template on commons that refer to rulings of EU bureacrats overriding local law. Good luck trying.
We are endeavoring to understand which of us is confused. Repetitious points about simple photographs simply adds noise. We are discussing PD-ItalyGov, not PD-Italy. Article 11 gives rights to all works by the state to the government. Article 29 says their copyright expires after 20 years. All this noise about simple photographs has not changed those facts.
-Mak 17:26, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Mak, I'm afraid we're not getting anywhere like that. EU legislation is binding on the member states, however hard you find this to grasp. And, yes, your magic wand metaphor is quite accurate. This actually is what many people in the EEA and candidate states find irritating about the Acquis Communautaire, too. Come on, you can read that in any one-page introduction to the EU. --Wikipeder 19:42, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Under the laws of Italy, what I have stated is correct. Do you agree with that? I ask because you had no response concerning the absurdity of your assertion regarding the Italian statute. I am perfectly happy to add some additional text saying that the validity of the law of Italy is disputed- even noting that it is you and Historiograf disputing it if you prefer. Would that be satisfactory?
EU directives have no legal force until they are implemented by the member countries, or until the European Court of Justice makes a ruling. Due to the highly controversial nature of this directive, it is anyone's guess what the court will rule. But the notion that a directive has any legal force is a recent and is itself highly controversial. Even with a ratified constitution the outcome of such a case is highly speculative. This controversy on legal force of directives is noted in the article on w:European Union directive.
At the base of it, you are making the argument that the law of a sovereign state is not valid, and that your argument would prevail in the European Court of Justice. You are stating that Italy has not correctly implemented the EUCD. That may or may not be. Two wikipedia articles state that Italy has implemented the EUCD (Copyright law of the European Union, and EU Copyright Directive. Why don't you take your arguments there? Until then, the only document with legal force is that of Italy's government. Sorry, but your magic wand is just that and it is pointless trying to wave it in people's faces. If you want to change the law, write Italy or sue Italy or take it to the Court of Justice. Change the wikipedia articles. Raise heck. But there's no telling what defence Italy would muster should such a case challenging the state's right to hold and release copyright after 20 years or who would prevail. Maybe you are right. Maybe you are wrong. Who knows. Maybe all gun control laws will one day be ruled unconstitutional. It is all guesswork until we see some caselaw.
Until then, what we have is the Italian copyright laws and they say state works are PD after 20 years.
Period. -Mak
A Google search will find you the Italian law implementing the EU directive in two seconds:
Decreto Legislativo 9 Aprile 2003, n. 68: Attuazione della direttiva 2001/29/CE sull'armonizzazione di taluni aspetti del diritto d'autore e dei diritti connessi nella societa' dell'informazione. (GU n. 87 del 14-4-2003 - Suppl. Ordinario n.61), [Legislative Decree of April 9th, 2003, no. 68: Implementation of the Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society]. Download the original and an English version here.
--Wikipeder 23:06, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Exactly. They have implemented the EUCD. We have been discussing the Italian law that implements the EU directive. That is the Italian copyright statute quoted in PD-Italy and PD-ItalyGov. Note the date of the revised statute we have been discussing. 2004. As far as the Italians are concerned, article 11 and 29 are in line with the EUCD. Those two articles make State works PD after 20 years. I am quite happy to have you support my argument, but I don't think that is what you intended.
  • I ask you again, do you or do you not agree to my proposed compromise stating that Italian law is possibly invalid according to EUCD? -Mak 23:37, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Mak, you are discussing a single law. Worse, you are discussing isolated paragraphs of a single—and by the way, outdated—version of a single law. There is far more to it.
Art. 11 and 29 are in line with the EU directive because these articles mean something else than you think. The term of copyright protection in Italy is 70 years p. m. a. Within that period and under certain conditions, certain institutions have the right to exclusively exert certain rights of the author for 20 years: the economic rights, but apparently not the moral rights (for the difference etc see e. g. it:Diritto d'autore).
Suggesting that this is not so but that instead Italy is breaking EU law, unnoticed so far except by you, is exotic but not too convincing. The latest volté in your argumentation—that the EU directive actually said something very different than is commonly understood—isn't either, ground-breaking that it, admittedly, is.
In any case, you seem to keep falling for the same old misunderstanding. It is not Italy's implementation of the EU directive that matters to us on the Commons but the rest of the world's. The directive's terms are valid in all EEA states and e. g. the US via the Uruguay Round Agreements Act. Now there are two scenarios:
  1. Italian laws are in line with the directive. Then copyright expires 70 years p. m. a., the tag is nonsense.
  2. Should for some inconceivable reason Italian law in fact be incompatible with the directive as you suggest, the tag and all images tagged with it would need to be deleted since these images could only possibly be used in the Italian WP and thus had no place on the Commons.
--Wikipeder 12:59, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Wikipeder, this is not a rebuttal. I have cited the passages in the italian law that prove you are wrong. You offer nothing in return except to repeat your personal interpretation of something that is not a law. Copyright for Italian works expire in 20 years according to article 29.
  • I have pointed out the absurdity of your assertion, concerning article 32, you decline to respond.
  • You continue to assert that passages 11 and 29 mean something different to you, but have not explained where the law states what you assert it states. Sorry, but unsupported assertions are not convincing.
  • You point out a further revision to the code after 2006, have cited the former 2004 version in your argument. If there is something in the 2006 revisions that support what you say, then let's hear them. Further, the PD-Italy template also points to the 2004 version, and when you modded the template, you did not update the link to the latest version, so it must not have been too important to you either. You have shown nothing in the 2006 revisions to support your claims.
  • You refer to the Italian copyright statute as a single law, as if it is overriden by something else, yet you have pointed to no laws or caselaw that overrides the Italian copyright statute. Again you only stamp your feet about the directive which has no legal force.
Since you have offered no substantive argument to support your claims, I am removing the warning not to use this template. The statements in it are correct. YOu are making a very speculative argument that the Italian law is written incorrectly. Fine. If the courts agree with you, we can deal with that then. Personally I doubt they will. Further, it is my intention to ammend the closing statement of PD-Italy since it is false concerning the 70 year limit. The statute very clearly states that this is not the case for State works as well as certain other works by non profit and Fascist party organizations. I will agree to the insertion of "Dispute text" for either of these templates depending on the choice of wording. -Mak 16:54, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Let me first say that I appreciate your non-offensive style of debate. This is not so common.
I'm sorry you could not be convinced. Frankly, I am pretty astonished how you can get such a different interpretation. You did not manage to get any substance to your claim how on earth your reading should be compatible with the EU directive. And, well, after all, Lupo and Historiograph do quite know what they are talking about.
I don't see a basis for further debate as long as you absurdly deny the relevance of the EU directive as implemented in any EEA state's and the US' law.
About the tags, though, beyond the question what Italian law might be: We can't have them on the Commons, and not any images that fulfil their criteria either. Please reconsider: There is no place on the Commons for images that can exclusively be used in a single country, here the Italian WP, but are copyrighted anywhere else. The tag needs to be deleted.
PD-Italy is a completely different thing. Images there are not normal photographic works but inferior, uncreative images. Whatever you feel Italian law might say about images taken for the state or non-profit organisations, it has nothing to do with this obscure class of images. Do not add this irrelevant sentence there.
If we cannot agree on the facts of European copyright law, you should at least adhere to Commons policy.
--Wikipeder 18:10, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Specifics Wikipeder. You need to rest your argument on specifics in Law and caselaw. You rely only on generalities, and your magic wand. The assertion that the Italian government only owns copyright for their works in Italy is absurd. Were we to believe this, we would believe that the US may release release US military images into the public domain in the US, but that PD status in invalid outside the US. It's silly. If any entity legitimately owns the copyright to a photo, they may release it into the public domain, and this release is valid in Europe as well as the EU. But you assert that the Italian government somehow does not own the copyright on their works. Article 11 asserts they do. Should we just take your word for it that they don't? Then you state the Italian law cited on both the Italian templates is wrong or somehow that there is some other "legislation" that is pertinent. That overrides what the Italian copyright statute states.
Without going into any specifics whatever, you point vaguely to "other legislation" and a website containing this "other" legislation. This is further evidence of the lack of substance to your assertions Look at the legislation number and date. Legislative Decree No. 68, of April 9, 2003. Look at the header for the Unesco translation we have been refering to. Sound familiar? It should, because it is the legislation as ammended by Legislative Decree No. 68, of April 9, 2003. So you are just going around in circles and return to the Copyright statute that we have been discussing all along. Only problem is, you didn't bother to check your facts so you didn't even know you were going in circles.
You refuse to point to Law to back up a legal assertion you are making. Well, all I can say is good luck, but I can't see how you can expect anyone to take your controversial assertions seriously if you don't rest your arguments on law. You do not contest my assertion that EU directives do not have legal force because they don't. The assertion that they do is highly controversial as noted in The wiki articles I cited on the subject. You have no response. So this endless chatter about the EU directive is irrelevant. What is relevant is how they are expressed in law.

So my question over and over to you has been- where is the law to back up your assertion? You refuse to point to anything other than article 32. But to believe you, we would have to believe that no one owns exploitation rights for 50 years. No answer from you.
Feel free to nominate the template for deletion. All you have convinced me of is that there is a lot of fuzzy and tribal thinking going on in consideration of copyvios. -Mak 21:09, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Look, I'm not going to expand this increasingly pointless debate into a referenced lecture on the workings of EU, US and international copyright. It's no shame to not know much about this, but I find it rather tedious that you don't seem prepared to read e. g. en:Wikipedia:Public domain or other texts experts wrote, let alone trust their judgement (as you pointed out above).
In very short words: A state can only release works into the public domain on his own territory. In each country the national copyright laws apply. The EU directive has been implemented in the national law in all EEA countries and the US. As a result, in all these countries the copyright protection of photographic works, those of Italian origin included, expires 70 years p. m. a.
The situation with images that specifically the US government releases into the public domain is different to that of EEA countries, because the EU accepted the Berne Convention's Rule of the shorter term, which the US did not. Within the EEA, however, the Rule of the shorter term doesn't apply either, but the EU directive instead.
As a result, if US law makes images PD earlier than EEA law, the images will automatically be PD in the EEA as well. If the Italian government, however, released photographic works to the PD earlier than other EEA countries, they would thus still be copyright protected everywhere in the EEA and US. Additionally, this would be an Italian violation of the EU directive.
In the end, we don't even have to bother with what Italian law exactly says and if it might violate the EU directive, as your reading implicitly assumes but what hasn't ever been claimed elsewhere. Whatever the situation in Italy, these photographic works are copyright protected 70 years p. m. a. virtually anywhere else, which doesn't make them free, so we can't have them on the Commons.
--Wikipeder 09:24, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Pardon me? Only what the law and caselaw says matters. Please try to understand. EU directives are not regulations- they are not self executing and have no legal force until they are expressed in law. I am not requesting you to expand your wild speculations, I'm just asking you to stop being evasive and support them. I made my specific citations of Italian law when I began this thread. Endless words from you later, you have yet to cite some law or caselaw that overrides what it says. The only thing pointless is your stubbornly refusal to support your statements. So we are left with what? That we should take your word for what you claim is the omnipetence of the EUCD? Come now. The EUCD is not law, and has no legal force until it is implemented in the local countries. The Wiki article on EU directives explains this very clearly and you do not dispute it.

Yet we now are surprized to learn from you that the EUCD has been implented in the US as well. Heavens to betsy- that's some magic wand you have there. Show me where US law recognizes 70 year pma over works that were pd in the country of origin on January 1, 1996. In 1996, under articles 11 and 29 of Italian law, all works of the Italian government that were more than 20 years old were public domain. There was no other law on the books in italy that overides that law then, and there isn't now. Under US law, all works that were public domain in their country of origin on January 1, 1996 were public domain in the US. And that is very clearly stated in the en:Wikipedia:Public domain article. So this locality nonsense is just that.

Of course, I can imagine all sorts of disingenous responses, such as that the EUCD was binding on Italy in 1995. Clever wording, no? Binding, yes, but isn't that interesting: with no legal force. Read the labels. The bottle at the store said Cherry drink. Ooops wait- they didn't say juice. How long does it take to read the label? "High fructoce corn syrup and water, with cherry flavouring." Similarly, all these splashy claims about what the EUCD says don't matter. Nothing else matters in court except facts, the law, and caselaw. This is a question of law, so we ask: were those works legally public domain in Italy on January 1, 1996? You might speculate all sorts of things- that someone might have been able in 1996 to use the principle of en:Direct effect to enforce a copyright they had in Spain for a work that was PD in Italy, but so what. No one did. So, as of January 1, 1996, in the absence of any Law or ECJ ruling to the contrary, we must conclude the answer is yes- those works of the Italian government were PD in Italy.

You make a lot of noise about that only being true for Italy, but nowhere else. Really? Take a look at the Uruguay Round Agreements Act changes reflected in US copyright Law- Title17, 104A h6b.[4] Since they were PD in the country of origin (Italy), copyright is not restored to EUCD levels in the US. No magic wand. This is true for any other works which were PD in any other EU country of origin that had not yet implemented the EUCD on January 1, 1996- which was just about everyone. Specifically, in the case of Italian government works published 20 years or more ago, this means the Wikipedia foundation is entitled to keep them on their servers in the US. Certainly I can see that some European making commercial use of such an image might get sued by a publisher from France attempting to claim exploitation rights over public domain Italian government works. No telling how the ECJ would rule though. There are EUCD articles supporting the other side of the argument as well.

So yeah, you can stomp your feet that the Italian law is wrong but at the end of the day we realize that Luxembourg is not the US, and these wild EUCD directive arguments won't wash in a US court. The US courts will look at what the Italian law said at the time, because that is what US Copyright Law (104A h6b) tells them to look at. Nowhere is mentioned the EUCD. Have fun speculating on what future EU court cases might rule in the future, and how the highly controversial question of legal force of EU directives might evolve in regards to copyright law interpretation. But that is just empty speculation and has no bearing on the legal status of the Italian government works in 1996. Instead of speculation, we have to go with what the law and caselaw says, not what we guess caselaw will say in the future.

If you do not care to support your assertions with facts and reference to specifics in the law, I do not see how you can expect me to be convinced of the truth of your assertions. If you are correct, you have not given me the opportunity to be convinced.

Since you have declined to provide any supported argument that the PD-ItalyGov template is invalid, I shall use the template and promote its use. I am not an advocate of breaking or bending copyright law- I have nominated images for deletion in the past and will continue to do so. I am interested in protecting the rights of the author and the public, whatever the law says those rights are. I am interested in following what the law says, not wild and unsupported speculations about what the EUCD might mean in some future court cases. -Mak 07:52, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

You are some wild debater! I find the answers to all your questions in the text above and the links I supplied.
Meta-debate: If you come up with a suggestion and others raise some grave concerns about your plans, it is your job to dispel these. Dismissing respected experts as ignorant, flatly declaring the basis for reservations non-existent and refusing to read and acknowledge information that is not in line with your view does not really achieve this.
--Wikipeder 10:40, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Now now. I have cited the specific passages supporting my argument. It is you who have declined to provide any legal support for your so called grave concerns. Show me where I called anyone ignorant. Notwithstanding your high opinion of particular advocates of particular points of view of law, you are making an appeal to authority- a fallacy of logic. You fall into this same trap as Histriograf so I should probably expand for you.

There are highly respected advocates of legal positions who sincerely believe their interpretation is the correct one. William Jennings Bryan was a highly respected and accomplished lawyer and served as Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson. He made legal arguments in a court of law that Darwinism should not be taught in schools. The judge agreed, as the judges in the appealate courts did. They were not fools, and coherant legal argument based on law were made. The appealate court judges weren't fools either and knew law better than you or I do. Yet they did not strike down the Tennessee law that forbade the teaching of Darwinism. Not until 1968 did the courts rule correctly that these ignorant laws favored a particular religions point of view and was unconstitutional.

Were there such a law forbidding articles on Darwinism in the state of florida, notwithstanding our respect for our advocates (such as Clarence Darrow), and the rightness of our position, we would have to remove them from the Wiki servers, or move the servers elsewhere. We conform to what the law says, not what we think it should say, or how we speculate it will be overriden in the future by some higher court. That is precisely the argument being made here and in the WP public domain article. The fight for establishing uniform code among the quarrelsome nations of Europe is a laudable one, and one that will benefit her economically and socially. It is a laudable political goal you have there. There are also extremely motivated intellectual property rights holders that would like to see a drastic curtailing of the growth of free information found in the Wiki's. At the end of the day, it doesn't really matter what people's hidden agendas, reputation or the rightness of their social goals are.

What matters is what the law says.

We are discussing the law today, as it is written today. In response to my specific citations, you have done nothing more than hand me references to entire documents and say your answer for me is there. Well sorry, but even an elementary school teacher would not accept such a reference in an essay. When you get it more sorted out where the support for your argument is, please provide the specific passages of law that support your statements. -Mak 18:56, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Since PD-ItalyGov has survived deletion request and judged valid (for the time being), it is time to update the Italy section to reflect a summarization of the current wording of the Italygov Template. Any objections? -Mak 06:22, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

Aerial Images[edit]

I have constructed some Hi-Res aerial images, made up of multiple images stiched together. They are sourced from Virtual Earth, which I understand are originally sourced from the USGS. I assume that as a US Govt Department these images would be classed as PD. can you confirm if this is correct and if they may be uploaded, and if so under what licensing. Richard Harvey 06:52, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

What is Virtual Earth? pfctdayelise (translate?) 10:49, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
MIcrosoft Live.local. Similar to Google Earth with extra features
See:- Virtual Earth explaination of Virtual Earth
Also:- TerraServer-USA Forerunner of Virtual stating Aerial images supplied by USGS.
It comes as a free attachment to the Microsoft Autoroute Programme that has a GPS Antennae included.
This example image on Wiki/en is constructed of several images stiched together:- Yarrow Reservoir Richard Harvey 17:33, 2 August 2006 (UTC)