Commons talk:Non-copyright restrictions

From Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository
Jump to: navigation, search

New page[edit]

Every once in a while someone will argue that materials are not free enough for commons because they are subject to some law unrelated to copyright. Most established folks on Commons and other Wikimedia projects don't suffer confusion or concern over this subject, but some people do. For the benefit of these people I propose that we bless this page an the official explication. I believe this fairly represents the understanding of this issue across all of Wikimedia's projects. --Gmaxwell (talk) 23:18, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support --Gmaxwell (talk) 23:19, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Of course. I've actually referenced this in a DR. I think it is good to have. --ShakataGaNai Talk 23:29, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support this as an explanatory essay of policy. It should not be policy for the sole reason that we don't want to turn into Wikipedia, with a suffocating and byzantine mass of rules that aren't really necessary. Lewis Collard! (lol, internet) 23:33, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
    • Agreed. I don't see any way this even could be policy now that I think of it. --ShakataGaNai Talk 02:09, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
      • Careful: You're going to start sounding like enwp in pretending there are these 'policy' things and 'not policy', etc. Better to just say "This explains the commons project position." Who cares if we call it policy or not? But first we need to know that this actually explains the consensus position. --Gmaxwell (talk) 04:19, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
        • Sniffle, I'm hurt. Claiming me sound like en.wp. So I changed it to say "position" instead of "policy". In the end it is neither. It is just a page that helps explains image re-use for the users. In the unlikely event they ever find it. I think someone should go post about this on COM:VP or COM:AN and see what the rest of the crew thinks. Personally I like it. --ShakataGaNai Talk 04:35, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
On Commons, it doesn't matter too much what you call it. We have help pages that are treated like policies, and "official polices" that are usually ignored. I prefer the collective term "Common(s) practices" :) Rocket000 (talk) 06:59, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
 :) Well once it's clear that I'm not being a rogue agent I'll link it from all the related templates... some people will find it. ;) I'll now commence with the spamming.--Gmaxwell (talk) 15:36, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
In that case, let me add another one these Symbol support vote.svg Support. Rocket000 (talk) 11:39, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg Support. I was the one who started this page (and also, where's my edit history? I DEMAND MY EDIT HISTORY AS REQUIRED BY DA GFDL!!!111) after a little dispute over on the English Wikipedia over Trademarks being considered non-free per the definition. Alleviates confusion about this stuff. ViperSnake151 (talk) 22:41, 19 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support. Better late than never. Kaldari (talk) 03:03, 24 July 2011 (UTC)

This has been around long enough. I have converted to a guideline. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 20:49, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Imported&merged history from en:[edit]

After complaints about GFDL violation by User:ViperSnake151, I imported the revision history from en: and merged it. I hope everyone is happy now. --Mormegil (talk) 09:07, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

For the record: All revisions until 18. 6. 2008, 21:05 (UTC) have been imported from Wikipedia, all revisions since 18. 6. 2008, 23:15 (UTC) have been created here normally. --Mormegil (talk) 09:11, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Non-copyright restrictions that affect Commons[edit]

Shouldn't this say that we only take non-copyright restrictions that make hosting the image on Commons itself illegal into account? Obvious as that is, the page now implies that uploaders do not need to care about personality rights, which is quite misleading. --Tgr (talk) 17:40, 28 August 2009 (UTC)

What do you mean with “The most important such restrictions are personality/privacy laws which do not allow Commons:photographs of identifiable people which were made in a private place, unless the depicted person gives permission.” You believe this very specific restriction is illegal in all (most?) countries? Or that this is against some specific Commons policy? Commons:Photographs of identifiable people is (intentionally, I believe) not too specific (“is often needed”, “Normally not OK” etc.), because the rules and laws are complicated and differ in various states. I don’t think the formulation should be this strict, especially the combination of this sentence with the preceding about child pornography is almost ridiculous (“the most important”? More important than those child pornography laws??). --Mormegil (talk) 20:34, 6 September 2009 (UTC)


It should be mentioned that such restrictions are ignored even they are part of the national copyright law --Historiograf (talk) 11:42, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

Good idea, I dont think that the claims are important here and Commons all the time ignored them, e.g. paintings photographed in Italian museums or Egypts architectural heritage, but reusers from that country or companies operating world wide should pay attention to it and not use - random example - artwork inspired by aztec works on coffee cups ;) We alredy mention such restrictions in Commons:Image_casebook#Antiquities with a link to here, but it is not explained. --Martin H. (talk) 12:33, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

Altered trademarks[edit]

I can see the merit in hosting trademarks, and leaving it up to the people who use the trademark to make sure they don't use it in an illegal manner. However, if a trademark is altered in a way that it, in effect, puts words into the mouth of the trademark owner, it is unethical to host such an altered image. One example is File:WRCBarnstar.png, which implies, by combining the Geneva cross with a Wikipedia barnstar, that the various Red Cross organizations endorse Wikipedia editors or vice versa. Jc3s5h (talk) 19:44, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Database right[edit]

I think we should add Database rights to the list of examples. There is a lot of confusion and discussions about it. I think it should be something like:

Database rights. Since 1996 European Union has so called database rights laws on the copying and dissemination of information in computer databases. A database right is considered to be a property right, comparable to but distinct from copyright, that exists to recognize the investment that is made in compiling a database. Database rights are not part of US law and US is not part of any treaties that requires it to honor European Union database rights.

Anybody with more knowledge of the subject please jump in. --Jarekt (talk) 18:22, 23 June 2011 (UTC)

This sounds great. We could add further explanation, but I like keeping it concise. I would support adding this exactly as you have proposed. Kaldari (talk) 20:10, 23 June 2011 (UTC)
I am not sure if this emphasizes the important part. We host trademarked files on Commons not because trademark would not be honored in the US. We host them because this restriction does not limit the image per se (it is a “non-copyright restriction”). Similarly, the most important fact about database rights in the context of COM:NCR is that the fact that somebody extracted an image from a database protected by such right does not affect the image (its copyright status and possible further use), even though the extraction might have infringed on the database rights. (Also note that generally, the Commons rules are not “US law prevails”, but “in at least the United States and in the source country of the work”.) --Mormegil (talk) 09:07, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
May be we should have very short mention of Database rights in this Policy and longer "essay" about it somewhere else, like Commons:Database rights. Than the last sentence of the above paragraph would be replaced by "* See Also Commons:Database rights."--Jarekt (talk) 13:04, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
I added a note to the page which is mostly based on Jarekt's suggestion, with an extra sentence added to address Mormegil's point above. Kaldari (talk) 03:04, 24 July 2011 (UTC)

Publication rights[edit]

Per this discussion, publication rights are considered relevant to Commons. Per this page, "non-copyright related restrictions are not considered relevant to the freedom requirements of Commons or by Wikimedia". This is contradictory and either A is incorrect or B should be corrected. If the latter, the same would apply to the database rights. --Eleassar (t/p) 10:21, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

Conflicts with the Definition of Free Cultural Works[edit]

A contributor has brought up a potential conflict between our internal policies and the Definition of Free Cultural Works, which the usage terms of all works uploaded to Wikimedia Commons must comply with. He specifically cites this:

"The work itself must not be covered by legal restrictions (patents, contracts, etc.) or limitations (such as privacy rights) which would impede the freedoms enumerated above."

Unfortunately, under a strict interpretation of the Definition, all images covered by COM:PEOPLE, or taken in locations with restrictions on photography, must be deleted, because the work is covered by legal restrictions and limitations which would impede the freedoms. Any thoughts? ViperSnake151 (talk) 00:44, 3 June 2014 (UTC)

I think "the work itself" excludes such interpretations: in short, the definition is meant to avoid tricks by the copyright holder, not to force the release of third party rights or laws which are not intrinsic to the work of the author. Otherwise, for instance, even a public domain political essay would not be "free" just because some laws on the protection of reputation prevent me from publishing a derivative where I change sentences into their opposite and attribute the opinion to the original author. --Nemo 19:30, 4 June 2014 (UTC)


See Commons_talk:Logo#Which_page_discusses_the_use_of_logos_on_Commons.3F. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 02:50, 30 July 2014 (UTC)

Moral rights[edit]

{{edit protected}} I think section about moral rights, added in 2013 for some reason, does not belong here. It isn't a "non-copyright restriction". Instead it's an essential part of civil law copyright laws and common copyright licenses applicable here deal with moral rights (e.g. attribution terms). 08:00, 30 October 2017 (UTC)

I suggest removing the section along with mention in lead section. 07:37, 5 November 2017 (UTC)

 Not done I think this section belongs here as it describes additional restrictions that my apply to works for which economic copyrights have expired. However I agree that we might want to clarify that those do fall under copyright laws of many countries. --Jarekt (talk) 19:25, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

Am i working in His name we love His jovenile Negative numbers are an important set of numbers they can and should they can and should be expored befores thet are encountered in agelebra in fact students almost every day either have some interaction wth naggative or experience a Befores discussing how models are used to explain the operation ir is worth pointing out that the rules procedural knowledge for operation on the integers are ally easier simply to give to students than explanation with a model are the conceptual explanations do not make the model are the conceptual explanations do not make the rules easier to use and it is never intended as they practico continue to think in terms of these models as they practice integer arithmetic Rather it is important that students not view the procedural rules for manipularing intergersas not trary and myterious Here then is a casewhere we must remember to make students responsible for rhe —Preceding unsigned comment was added by 2800:370:9F:9EC0:A885:282F:C8BD:9AB5 (talk) 18:42, 6 April 2018 (UTC)