Wikipedia:Media copyright questions

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Article Writer dcw2003----Please Help[edit]

Dcw2003 (talk) 19:43, 22 May 2015 (UTC) I am currently in dire need of learning more about copyright statuses of sports photos from the 1920-1940 period. I was forwarded an online copyright listing for this period, but it is of little use, since photos are not listed by subject, and no link to the photo itself is included.

I am familiar with the use of library of congress photos, and have access to their website, but they seem to have little on file, except for their newspaper listings, which I also have access to but I am rarely able to capture them, although I have used a few. Photos of boxers in LOC are not frequent in their newspaper listings, since photos in newspapers were not common prior to 1923 anyway. After 1923, how does one know for sure if a newspaper photograph can be used. For instance, you might be able to tell is a copyright was renewed, but how can your research to find that a copyright was NOT RENEWED?

Any suggestions would be enormously appreciated. I would love to find online repositories. Large papers like the New York Times or Los Angeles Times are available to me, though not easy to get to. (Of course they are digitally captured with search capabilities and reside in only a few select libraries which I have used). A person cannot subscribe to these services as an individual, however. I would of course prefer for convenience online digital repositories where copyright information is available to obtain newspaper photos. I do know the names of most of these services but after 1923, how does a person know if the photos are usable?

How does one search for an expired copyright of a single photo from a newspaper, book, or magazine? Thanks.

Any ideas? I know this is a broad topic.

Previous section was entered by dcw2003

Dcw2003 (talk) 19:35, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

I don't know about any specific online image repositories (Have you checked Wikimedia Commons?). But I can tell you a bit about copyrighted works in the US. You might already know that any works published in the US before 1923 are out copyright anyway, so very early sports photos from the US can readily be used. For your period of interest, ie 1920-40, photos needed to be published with an explicit copyright notice to be effectively copyrighted. See this chart for details. If you know the name of the photographer and the year of publication of a photo, you can check the relevant copyright catalogue here, to see if it was ever registered for copyright. With all the required provisions and the need to publish a copyright notice, chances are high that many of your photos are actually out of copyright. De728631 (talk) 19:50, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
However, be careful because unpublished photos by unknown photographers, which your images may well be from looking at your uploads, are copyright for 120 years from creation in the US or 70 years pma where the photographer is known. You may want to carefully read the United States section of Copyright rules by territory on the commons. Other countries have different rules and commons images must be freely licenced in both the US and the source country. Good luck. ww2censor (talk) 23:21, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

I have published a new article on Wikipedia using a Chart also published at the, which I am also the author and Chairman. I have removed all copyright references from the Is that sufficient for the Chart, which was uploaded as Commons, now to be published at Wikipedia? Bbosramek (talk) 02:24, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

deleted images[edit]


I have uploaded three images to be included in the article "Stanley Pranin".

The images were kindly given to me by Mr Pranin to be included in the article. Unfortunately, in the uploading process the copyright and permissions became very confusing and I think I filled out the wrong section. The long and short of it is the images were deleted.

I have been trying to get the problem sorted out for months now but no one has yet taken it up.

I would be very grateful if someone would.


File:stanley-pranin.jpg File:Stanley-pranin-with-kisshomaru-ueshiba-1978-tokyo-sec.1-2.jpg File:stanley-pranin-morihiro-saito-1988-san-diego.jpg — Preceding unsigned comment added by Trowbridge Aikikai (talkcontribs) 13:37, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

@Trowbridge Aikikai: Before you start to upload an image, you first need to determine who the copyright owner is and what license that person grants for use of the image. For a photograph the copyright owner is almost always the photographer; so unless the image is a selfie, Stanley Pranin is probably not the owner. The license must allow reuse by anyone for anything. —teb728 t c 07:11, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

"Fair use" from third party as opposed to official sources[edit]

(Discussion moved from Village Pump)

Given that a truly free image to illustrate the John Menzies retail outlets can't be found after a reasonable amount of searching, is there any preference in the "fair use" policy to using a non-free image from the company's own official material ([1]) as opposed to one presumably taken by an unrelated a third party (e.g. this person's website).

My gut instinct would be that the former is preferable, but I've no idea if that has a basis in legal fact and/or WP policy...? Can any one clarify this?

(I should make clear that while Menzies still exists as a newspaper distribution and aviation business, the retail side- which was widespread and very well-known (particularly in Scotland)- was sold off in the late 1990s, and any accurate representations of them intact would by necessity be archive images. I've been unable to find free photographs of Menzies shops in their original state.)

Ubcule (talk) 19:50, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

@Ubcule: I would say the preference would be for no illustration. The policy is, "Non-free content is used only if its presence would significantly increase readers' understanding of the article topic, and its omission would be detrimental to that understanding." I can't imagine how an image of a retail outlet would significantly increase readers' understanding. —teb728 t c 06:49, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Given that Menzies was a significant retail presence in its day, and the photo illustrates an example of that in a way that words couldn't entirely... I'd have to say that if this falls below the level deemed "significant" (and it can be argued that according to the strict wording of the policy it does), then I'd guess the vast majority of fair use images also fall below it.
Not saying that this excuses it, but if so, I'd like to see that policy applied consistently.
At any rate, I'd also appreciate an answer to my original question, as it's something I'd already wondered previously- is it acceptable to use a third party image in preference to a first party one if neither are free? Ubcule (talk) 17:20, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
  • In general, as long as you can properly attribute the copyright owner, I don't think it matters which non-free source you use. It would probably come down to quality of the image for the intended purpose. I suppose (broadly speaking) a random internet photo could itself have been pirated from the true owner, so by using the "official" one, at least there is no question as to ownership. CrowCaw 17:30, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the analysis. All the best, Ubcule (talk) 17:32, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
Wouldn't it be preferable to use an image from the company? While we aim to be as strict as we can with WP:NFCC, we ultimately can never know how a court will rule (not that it is likely to get to that). It seems that it would be far more difficult for a company to claim any loss (or effect on their ability to exploit the value) when we are just using the image to show what their shops looked like in an encyclopaedic article and licencing images of their shops to people who just want to show what they looked like in an article probably isn't a business focus (although I guess there could be cases where it is). If the image found on a random website really belongs to someone else, and what's being depicted is rare, the person's primary interest in that image could very well be licencing it. Nil Einne (talk) 17:13, 28 May 2015 (UTC)


I've been working -- possibly to the point of distraction -- on the Norman Dike page. I want to use one or two images:

The first is this one of Dike and his English girlfriend at Littlecote House in 1943. (If the book doesn't open to the right page, search for Norman Dike.) The photographer was John Reeder, who was serving as a lieutenant at the time. Reeder, if I have the right guy, died in 2010. I think that the picture is in the public domain 1) by now based on the old rules or 2) from day one if Reeder was on duty when he took it (I can't tell from the context). I couldn't find the image on line so I did a screencap and cropped it; it's resting "comfortably" on my local machine. If I can use it as public domain or fair use, am I ethically obligated to mask the girlfriend (Dike was married at the time)?

The second is this one of Dike in a group on page 99; he is second from the right in the first row. I couldn't find a copyright or masthead in the magazine, although I'm sure there must have been one. This picture's primary value to me was to verify Dike's identity in the first image. I'd crop this one. Is this one out of copyright under the old rules or can I claim fair use? I haven't done the screencap yet.

If I've been overly fuzzy, let me know.

Thanks in advance,

--Jim in Georgia Contribs Talk 13:06, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Under US copyright rules, a picture dating from 1941 would be out of copyright only if it was published and the copyright was not renewed. If it was never published, or if the copyright was proeprly renewed, it would still be protected. A picture taken by a soldier would be PD only if taken as a part of his assigned duties, a personal photo would still be under copyright even if he was on duty. If UK rules apply, then i'm not sure, but I suspect a similar outcome. DES (talk) 01:41, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. I decided to crop the first image and upload it as File:Lieutenant Norman Dike (1943).jpg, claiming WP:Fair use. Comments on that one are welcome.--Jim in Georgia Contribs Talk 14:28, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

jelly belly candy company gift shop image[edit]

Shows the Gift Shop sample bar at the Jelly Belly Candy Company in Fairfield, CA

This image is posted on the Jelly Belly Candy Company website image gallery to be used as needed for non-commerical reasons. I am not sure what tag should be added to the image so it can be posted on the wiki page.

Source: Tours



Jelly Belly Candy Company


(Reusing this file)

mnighbor — Preceding unsigned comment added by Mnighbor (talkcontribs) 16:34, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Exactly which image are you referring to on the two pages you linked to? Some appear to be Flickr images but we don't know which one so we can try to find the source and see if it is freely licenced. If not then we cannot use it. We do not accept images with non-commercial restrictions. ww2censor (talk) 20:46, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Google n-gram chart[edit]

1. I uploaded a Google n-gram chart ( :File:Paternoster etc ngram.jpg) to use in the discussion at Talk: Esperanto grammar #Patro nia. I couldn't find any license information on it or any discussion of usage permissions or restrictions, but the fact that Google provides embed code for it makes a pretty strong case for unlimited use.

I wrote that argument into the file description, but I couldn't find an item on the licensing dropdowns to describe it accurately. Naturally the upload interface, which can't read text, threw up the appropriate forest of warning flags, including a takedown date of June 1. What should I do?

2. I'm composing this question in a text app on my smartphone. The instructions for this page say

1. To ask a new question hit the "Click here to ask your question" link above.

Ain't no such link via the Beta Mobile Front End, so I'm gonna hafta send this file to my laptop & post it from there. [PS: Gonna posted a bug report on Phabricator.]

To discuss any of this, please {{Ping}} me. --Thnidu (talk) 02:36, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

@Thnidu: Sorry, but there is nothing in the existence of embed code that undoes Google's copyright in their product and its results. --Orange Mike | Talk 02:21, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Neil Perez.jpg and June Macasaet[...].jpg[edit]

I proposed the File:Neil Perez.jpg and the File:June Macasaet Winning at the Manhunt International 2012.jpg to save the images to my own work it is related to the images of the article thanks.MarkHerson (talk) 17:12, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

@MarkHerson: Don't just start a new subject at the end of a Talk (or other) page. That made your paragraph part of the discussion on my post "Google n-gram chart". This is how it looked; look down at the bottom.
I've inserted a section header to separate it, but the easiest way to start a new topic is to click the "New section" button at the top of a regular Talk page, or the link "Click here to ask your question" in the header of this or any other "Wikipedia:(blah blah)" question page. --Thnidu (talk) 04:20, 29 May 2015 (UTC)
So what exactly is your question? Are you asking why the images are likely to be deleted? Neither of them have a filled in {{information}} (click to see the full details you will use) template with all it necessary details such as the description, source, author and date, so we don't know who took the photo and where it came from. Also, there is no copyright tag so we don't know how it has been licenced by the copyright holder even if that is you. If they are your own images you must freely licence them by adding a tag such as {{Attribution}}, {{PD-self}} or {{cc-by-sa-4.0}} or similar appropriate free ones found at WP:TAGS and WP:ICT/FL. You may find it useful to read my image copyright information page. ww2censor (talk) 10:01, 29 May 2015 (UTC)


I'm putting a picture on my Wikipedia page and it's not letting me do it. It says that you can't use the picture without permission from the person who it on the internet, but it is on my user page where no one but me can see it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by WWEFan1926 (talkcontribs) 18:35, 29 May 2015 (UTC)

  • Everyone can see and edit every page here, for the most part. Copyrighted material is not allowed anywhere, as it states above every edit window and you agree to by hitting the Save button. CrowCaw 18:41, 29 May 2015 (UTC)

add poster viva film[edit]

it is matter to uploaded proposed of making the poster File:BoyGoldenShoottoKilltheArturoPorcunaStoryPoster.jpg said Philippine ip watching Boy Golden: Shoot to Kill, the Arturo Porcuna Story in official metro manila film festival 2013 happened? Oripaypaykim (talk) 03:20, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

This is incomprehensible (NO ONE CAN UNDERSTAND IT). --Thnidu (talk) 04:06, 30 May 2015 (UTC)