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Wikipedia:Mirrors and forks

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Mirrors and forks of Wikipedia are publications that mirror (copy exactly) or fork (copy, but change parts of the material of) Wikipedia. Many correctly follow the licensing terms; however, many others fail – accidentally or intentionally – to place the notice required by these terms. Such pages are listed in subpages grouped alphabetically – see section § How to list new mirrors below. If you find such links, please add them here. In July 2020, the subpages listed a total of 1030 mirrors and forks of Wikipedia.

Things you need to know[edit]

Using these mirrors and forks on Wikipedia
Copies of Wikipedia are not reliable sources and not acceptable external links in articles per the verifiability policy. Articles that use a republished work as a source should be edited to either remove the work or to tag the source with {{Circular-ref}}. Leave {{backwardscopy}} on the article's talk page to identify Wikipedia as the original source.
Copyright status of mirrors and forks
Every contribution to the English Wikipedia has been licensed for re-use, including commercial, for-profit websites. Republication is not necessarily a breach of copyright, so long as the appropriate licenses are complied with.
Effect of non-compliance with licenses
If the license is not complied with, then the republication is a copyright violation. You own the copyright to your contributions, not the Wikimedia Foundation. Legally, the Wikimedia Foundation is in the same position as the republishers (except that the WMF always complies with your license terms), because the WMF is republishing your copyrighted content under your license. If someone violates the terms of the license, then enforcement needs to come from the copyright owner. Consequently, complaints about violations need to be made by a person who actually wrote part of the improperly republished material. See #Non-compliance process for one typical method for dealing with publishers who violate your copyright. If your own copyright has not been violated, then you may contact one or more of the editors who own the copyright for the material in question, and suggest that they follow the steps in the suggested process. The Wikimedia Foundation and the community cannot do this on behalf of the copyright owner.

How to list new mirrors[edit]

List new mirrors in the appropriate alphabetical section:


Also include them on the CC BY-SA Compliance (most sites) or GFDL compliance pages (if they say they comply with that license).

Use this form to add new ones:
{{Wikipedia mirror
| name = <name of the webpage> (not url)
| url = URL
|description = its scope, what features it has, differences with WP, innovations, etc.
| sample = URL
| rating = "High", "Medium", or "Low/None" compliance with CC BY-SA (matches Wikipedia:CC BY-SA Compliance) (compare against GFDL if they choose that license).
| compliance = Describe details of compliance or lack thereof. List violations here.
| contact = E-mails, phone numbers, contact form URLs, etc. of admin and ISP.
| action = Actions taken (if any) to attempt to make the website comply.

Archiving mirrors[edit]

If a mirror link is permanently offline, it should be copied to the archive page. A site is permanently offline if the domain has expired or the domain has been transferred to a new owner.


Wikipedia's main license, the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License (CC BY-SA), requires that any derivative of works from Wikipedia must be released under that same license, must state that it is released under that license, and must acknowledge the contributors (which can be accomplished with a link back to that article on Wikipedia).

As of 2009, most Wikipedia text is also dual-licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. However, this will gradually change as CC BY-SA text is imported. Thus, it is not safe for most reusers to use the GFDL. Pages identified to use imported CC content are included at Category:Articles with imported Creative Commons licensed text. The GFDL can still be used indefinitely for pages without CC BY-SA only content. Generally, the GFDL imposes requirements that are similar to the CC BY-SA but more stringent.

For details about Wikipedia's interpretation of the CC BY-SA and GFDL, see Wikipedia:Copyrights. However, always remember that only the CC BY-SA and GFDL themselves are legally binding.

Note that all notices and/or links must be visible to all users who can see the content. Thus, CSS and JavaScript-only links and/or notices are not acceptable if the Wikipedia article is plain HTML.

The license does not apply to materials in the public domain or that is used under fair use. Also, material can be used under other terms if and only if all contributors have approved them.

The websites listed on the "compliance" pages below use content original to Wikipedia as a source for at least some of their content. Wikipedia itself is not included.

Dealing with mirrors and forks[edit]

In some instances, it is clear that two pieces of text (one on Wikipedia, and one elsewhere) are copies of each other, but not clear which piece is the original and which is the copy. "Compliant" sites that copy Wikipedia text note that they have done so, but not all of our re-users are compliant.

In such cases, check the talk page to see if there is a note regarding any "backwards-copying". If not, try to identify any possible problems with the text. Does the website have a record of unattributed copying of articles (use the list below)? Did the content show up on Wikipedia all in one piece, inserted by a single editor? If you don't see good evidence that Wikipedia had it first, file an investigation request by following the instructions for listing at the Copyright Problems page.

If you confirm with certainty that the content originated from Wikipedia, please consider adding {{backwardscopy}} to the article's talk page with an explanation of how you know.

Non-compliance process[edit]

This section describes the steps that might be taken on discovering a new site that uses Wikipedia content without properly complying with the license.
Note that Wikipedia does not give legal advice. Contributors retain their own copyright for submitted work.

If you do contact a website about infringement relating to work originally submitted to Wikipedia, please note it on the relevant subpage listed above. Doing this will help coordinate activities in helping other websites become compliant with our licence, without webmasters feeling harassed by lots of angry non-compliance notices.

You may want to consider using a disposable e-mail address for this; since many of the websites listed here are built for advertising purposes, spamming is a possibility. Also, if the owner is planning to shut down the webpage, or remove the Wikipedia content as a whole, suggest to them that they use robots.txt or meta tags so we can remove and prevent future search engine indexing and caching for those websites. Also, if the owner is reachable, suggest that they update their Wiki with the latest database dumps to keep up with recent changes.


This is not an official guideline but a tool you can use for dealing with infringement. Continue the series below as long as the site is non-compliant. Note that you must choose only pages for which you hold (partial) copyright. These steps only work for dealing with infringement on websites in the United States.

  1. If the text is licensed under CC BY-SA only, send a standard CC BY-SA violation letter to the site owner. If it is dually licensed, send a standard license violation letter. You can use a whois lookup to get contact info if it is not otherwise available.
  2. One week (or more) later, send a follow-up reminder.
  3. Three weeks (or more) later, send a final warning, noting that continued infringement will result in a DMCA takedown notice being sent to their ISP.
  4. Two weeks (or more) later, send a DMCA takedown notice to the ISP, enumerating articles that infringe your copyright. Note separately that the site also violates the copyrights of others. To find the appropriate address, first search the ISP's website. To find the ISP, you can: enter the domain name in the DNS search at http://dnsstuff.com, then click the IP. First search the ISP's site for a legal address. If that doesn't work, try to look them up at https://dmca.copyright.gov/osp/. If they're not in the directory, send the notice to the abuse address. Note that sites are not legally required to accept DMCA notices. If they don't, the only recourse is legal action.

Remote loading[edit]

Some mirrors load a page from the Wikimedia servers directly every time someone requests a page from them. They alter the text in some way, such as framing it with ads, then send it on to the reader. This is called remote loading, and it is an unacceptable use of Wikimedia server resources. Even remote loading websites with little legitimate traffic can generate significant load on our servers, due to search engine web crawlers.

If you suspect a website is remote loading Wikipedia content, you can report it at meta:Live mirrors.

The appropriate way to run a mirror is to download a dump of the compressed 'pages-article' file and the images from http://download.wikimedia.org/, and then use a modified instance of MediaWiki to generate the required HTML, along with above mentioned copyrights information. Please use Articles, templates, image descriptions, and primary meta-pages (pages-articles.xml.bz2) for mirroring purposes.

Copies of this list[edit]

A separate list of sites that utilise Wikipedia content is maintained at the OpenFacts site: Copies of Wikipedia content. This list consists primarily of complete copies of all Wikipedia articles. It is intended to show readers where they can get Wikipedia content when Wikipedia itself is down.

See also[edit]



Other online encyclopedias (some are forks of, or are based on Wikipedia, the rest are competitors or colleagues)