Wikipedia:Media copyright questions

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How to add a copyright tag to an existing image
  1. On the description page of the image (the one whose name starts File:), click Edit this page.
  2. From the page Wikipedia:Image copyright tags, choose the appropriate tag:
    • For work you created yourself, use one of the ones listed under the heading "For image creators".
    • For a work downloaded from the internet, please understand that the vast majority of images from the internet are not appropriate for use on Wikipedia. Exceptions include images from flickr that have an acceptable license, images that are in the public domain because of their age or because they were created by the United States federal government, or images used under a claim of fair use. If you do not know what you are doing, please post a link to the image here and ask BEFORE uploading it.
    • For an image created by someone else who has licensed their image under the GFDL, an acceptable Creative Commons license, or has released their image into the public domain, this permission must be documented. Please see Requesting copyright permission for more information.
  3. Type the name of the tag (e.g.; {{GFDL-self}}), not forgetting {{ before and }} after, in the edit box on the image's description page.
  4. Remove any existing tag complaining that the image has no tag (for example, {{untagged}})
  5. Hit Save page.
  6. If you still have questions, go on to "How to ask a question" below.
How to ask a question
  1. To ask a new question hit the "Click here to ask your question" link above.
  2. Please sign your question by typing ~~~~ at the end.
  3. Check this page for updates, or request to be notified on your talk page.
  4. Don't include your email address, for your own privacy. We will respond here and cannot respond by email.
Note for those replying to posted questions

If a question clearly does not belong on this page, reply to it using the template {{mcq-wrong}} and, if possible, leave a note on the poster's talk page. For copyright issues relevant to Commons where questions arising cannot be answered locally, questions may be directed to Commons:Commons:Village pump/Copyright.

Screenshot of a table from a journal article[edit]

Hi. I have a question. I would like to use a screenshot of a table in this academic journal article on this article talk page to help editors understand what the source is saying. Is that possible? I don't want to use the screenshot in an article, if that makes any difference. Cordless Larry (talk) 18:26, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

First of all, I'd say that tables can always be reproduced without having to take a screenshot. I.e. you can add a coded table to any Wikipedia page. As to the copyright situation, to my knowledge simple tables aren't original enough to be copyrighted even if the source paper as such is protected. But to be on the safe side you should just use a small excerpt on properly quote the source. De728631 (talk) 18:58, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
For reasons that are quite specific to the debate going on on the talk page, I would prefer to use a screenshot rather than reproducing it by making a table here in Wikipedia, so that it appears exactly as in the source. What licence would I need to give the file if that is allowed? Cordless Larry (talk) 19:45, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
You should use both {{PD-ineligible}} and {{PD-USonly}} and upload the file here at Wikipedia. According to the University of Michigan tables and charts of data are in fact not copyrightable in the US [1] but the publisher Taylor & Francis is based in the United Kingdom where copyright law is a bit stricter. That's why we should keep the file locally at the US-based Wikipedia server and not at Commons. De728631 (talk) 21:29, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, De728631. That's brilliant. I've uploaded it using those licences. Cordless Larry (talk) 23:00, 8 February 2015 (UTC)
The chart and paper are copyrighted. Taylor and Francis indicates as much on its website ("We are the owner or the licensee of all copyright, trademarks, design rights, database rights, confidential information, or any other intellectual property rights (together the "Intellectual Property") in the Site, the content and the Materials. The Materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws and treaties around the world. All such rights are reserved." [2]). Middayexpress (talk) 16:08, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
As De728631 notes, "charts of data are in fact not copyrightable in the US". Further advice would be appreciated on this though. Cordless Larry (talk) 16:44, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
That makes no difference. Charts like this are deleted all the time for violating copyright. The deletion template explains that "this file may meet Wikipedia's criteria for speedy deletion as this file is copied from, which does not have a license compatible with Wikipedia". Tandonline is the actual copyright holder, and it clearly indicates that the "materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws and treaties around the world", and that "all such rights are reserved" [3]. Middayexpress (talk) 16:51, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
{{PD-USonly}} is there for a reason and has so far been used extensively for content that is copyrighted elsewhere (especially in the UK) but would not be copyrightable in the United States. Please see also the disclaimer that states specifically that the work is copyrighted in the source country. So again, in such cases we'll have to distinguish between US copyright law and the local situation in the country of origin. Likewise, the UK does not allow for full fair use but we do that all the time at Wikipedia with the servers being based in Florida. De728631 (talk) 18:15, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
Hmm. Well, the image has just been deleted by RHaworth. Cordless Larry (talk) 18:18, 9 February 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── That's why I just asked him to weigh in. De728631 (talk) 18:23, 9 February 2015 (UTC)

Great - many thanks. Cordless Larry (talk) 18:26, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Easiest thing is to upload it to your own website and link to it from the talk page. — RHaworth (talk · contribs) 22:44, 11 February 2015 (UTC)
Yes, that's a possibility, but it would be better for it to appear on the talk page without editors having to leave Wikipedia. Cordless Larry (talk) 07:51, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
I'm still wondering why you deleted the file. Unless it contained copyrightable text the situation should have been quite obvious given the licence templates. De728631 (talk) 20:46, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
Can I formally request that the deletion decision be reviewed? Cordless Larry (talk) 20:36, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
You can do so at: Wikipedia:Deletion review but read the "Purpose" section and as it advises, you should firstly discuss it with the deleting admin. ww2censor (talk) 22:36, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. RHaworth, can I request that you reconsider your decision to delete the image, in light of De728631's comments about the use of {{PD-USonly}}? Cordless Larry (talk) 17:25, 16 February 2015 (UTC)
  • I can summon up no interest in this topic at all. If you can find another admin willing to restore, I shall take no action. — RHaworth (talk · contribs) 17:30, 16 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. De728631, are you willing and able to do this? Cordless Larry (talk) 16:16, 17 February 2015 (UTC)
Restored - but I change the license to {{PD-text}}. Taylor and Francis cannot own any claim on the numbers as they are clearly marked as from the UK Gov - Department for Education. I agree there is probably just about enough "sweat of the brow" to maybe make it copyright over here, therefore the {{PD-USonly}} is good. Ronhjones  (Talk) 22:31, 18 February 2015 (UTC)
Many thanks Ron. Much appreciated. Cordless Larry (talk) 00:18, 19 February 2015 (UTC)
Yes, thanks a lot, Ron. De728631 (talk) 01:10, 20 February 2015 (UTC)

Need Help with picture rights[edit]

Hi I represent this company and I uploaded this picture File:Open Loop New York hop on hop off tour bus 2014.jpg

i'd like to change the licensing to copyrighted, for non commercial use. Help! I need to submit proof by Feb 15th.

Thank you Doug — Preceding unsigned comment added by Douggeenyc (talkcontribs) 18:29, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

Hello, Douggeenyc. We cannot accept permission for noncommercial use only. While this site is not-for-profit, part of our mission is about freedom, including commercial freedom. We accept copyrighted material in limited cases, but they do not apply here.
Please do consider allowing commercial use, if you would. You (or your company) will still receive credit for the photo.
Anon124 (+2) (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 22:02, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

@Anon124: Thank you Anon124, ok how can I make it for commercial use? Thanks for your help!

Hi again, Douggeenyc. To do that, go to this page and find the form letter to send by e-mail. (Please do not follow the large link at the top or the link to Wikimedia Commons.)
The e-mail should be sent from an address that ends in, or one that is listed as an official contact address on the website or social media.
(Please sign your messages with the four tildes ~~~~ at the end. This is also required for notifying me.)
Anon124 (+2) (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 17:55, 12 February 2015 (UTC)

@Anon124: Done, I emailed it , thanks for your help Douggeenyc (talk) 20:45, 13 February 2015 (UTC)

@Anon124: Hi again, the photo was taken down, automatically perhaps even though I emailed the form before the deadline. How can I get it back up? Perhaps the admins have yet to read the email? Douggeenyc (talk) 21:27, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Hi, Douggeenyc. The process is not automatic, but the time limits are observed. Yes, most likely the e-mail has not been read; there is a backlog. The photo can be restored when the e-mail is received in its turn. Anon124 (+2) (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 20:23, 18 February 2015 (UTC)

Logo copyright[edit]

Is a logo copyrighted? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Noraresearchsupport (talkcontribs) 11:07, 18 February 2015 (UTC)

To Noraresearchsupport: Many logos are copyrighted, but those that consist only of text and simple shapes may not be. More information about this issue is at Threshold of originality (on Wikimedia Commons). Anon124 (+2) (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 20:26, 18 February 2015 (UTC)
Assuming that you are refrerring to File:Science and Technology Policy Research (logo).jpg, you need to realise that the UK has a very low threshold of originality, so the ligature style U & S combo may well be considered copyright. If it was a US logo it would for sure be {{PD-textlogo}}. The fair-use rationale looks fine as it is but needs to be reduced in size so I'll tag it for reduction. ww2censor (talk) 17:45, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

copyright of image Queen'sBeasts1953 copy1.jpg[edit]

The original photograph of the above image was made in 1953 by Studio Swain, Glasgow, a company that went out of business and can no longer be contacted. The family of Alison Geissler, the artist who made the engraving, and who placed the order for the photograph, possesses several prints of it, but not the original negative. In their opinion this image is an important example of Alison Geissler's work. Under these conditions, is there an acceptable way of including it in the entry ? Thanks for your help and advice.Kreutzbruder (talk) 17:02, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

In this case we would need the heir that owns copyright on the engraving and photo to send written permission of a release under a free license using the procedure in WP:PERMIT. You said cc-by-3.0 was the license so the heir should include that in their email. We can assume that they own copyright on the photo as well as a work for hire. Is it still possible to take photos of the work? If not and a free license is not forthcoming, then it may be able to be used under fair use. The text will have to have commentary on the work, and fair use rationale prepared for the image. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 19:48, 21 February 2015 (UTC)

Thanks Graeme Bartlett! Your explanation was very helpful. The first solution looks by far the best.Kreutzbruder (talk) 15:10, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

Image upload[edit]

Is this Wikipedia Commons image appropriate for upload? How to I cite it? I used the correct format for entering a thumbnail. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Alchavers21 (talkcontribs) 22:49, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

If you are referring to the image you added to Battle of Cumae, it's fine but you should not force the image size per WP:IMGSIZE and "right" is the default so is unnecessary extra code. ww2censor (talk) 00:33, 20 February 2015 (UTC)

Giving copyright[edit]

How Do You Give Copyright to images? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Metalworker14 (talkcontribs) 22:53, 20 February 2015 (UTC)

Hi, Metalworker14. I'm guessing you're referring to tagging images with their copyright status. A list of tags is here. In your case, you should check out the "copyrighted non-free/fair use" tags. Go to the page, and add the code that applies by editing the image page.
If you want to make the process easier in the future, you can use the File Upload Wizard.
Anon126 (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 17:07, 21 February 2015 (UTC)

Salvador Alvarado[edit]

I am working on an English presentation on Salvador Alvarado. Only one of the images on his Spanish page is in commons, but is there something that must be done so that the other images are available for the English language Wikipedia? Or do I just upload the photo again as I would for fair use, since he is dead? I hardly understand the rules for US copyright, much less the ones for Mexico. Thank you for your help. The images are here [4] SusunW (talk) 16:45, 21 February 2015 (UTC)

To SusunW: The Spanish Wikipedia has disabled local uploads, so all images that appear there are on Commons. So, they can be used here on the English Wikipedia without any extra work. Anon126 (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 17:00, 21 February 2015 (UTC)
Yay! Thank you! SusunW (talk) 22:45, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

Willard Libby[edit]

I don't understand whether the tags on File:Willard Libby.jpg would allow me to use it in radiocarbon dating, which I'm planning to take to FAC. It looks like it's under copyright, so I assume I have to put in a FUR, like any other copyrighted file. I asked another editor who knows more than I do about images and they said they thought the image meets {{PD-URAA}}, but suggested I ask here and at commons. Any advice? Thanks. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 13:33, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

This has been answered on commons; it appears too little is known about the original publication to allow this to be treated as PD. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 16:39, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

Logo copyright[edit]

Hi! I recently uploaded File:Bohol Wisdom School logo.png but I was not able to include a fair use rationale or a copyright tag, and it was already deleted. I need some assistance with the fair use rationale and copyright tag. Thank you! — MG (talk) 06:29, 24 February 2015 (UTC)

To Marvgabo:
Symbol question.svg Question: It is not deleted, and the rationale seems fine. Was there another problem you had? Anon124 (+2) (notify me of responses! / talk / contribs) 20:33, 24 February 2015 (UTC)
Hi, Anon124! Thank you for your response. I mistakenly uploaded this on Commons, which I had previously used for the article. I realized my mistake only after the file has been uploaded. As of now, I guess the file has been okay, awaiting for a robot to resize its resolution. — MG (talk) 02:57, 25 February 2015 (UTC)

Person who took the photos wants me to upload them[edit]

I have two photos sent to me by a popular music group on Wikipedia, taken by a photographer they hired. I thought I had proper permissions, and uploaded them, but they were taken down. Since then, the photographer himself has emailed me asking why the photos are not on Wikipedia. What do I need to do to "officially" have permission to upload the photos. The artist and the photographer all want the photos here, but for some reason, they were removed. Chas (talk) 16:35, 24 February 2015 (UTC)

This is easy when you know how. Upload images to our sister project Wikimedia Commons, then they will be available to all our projects. See : [5] in order that we know we have the photographers permission and there will then be no more issues. Just takes an e-mail from photographer to us. See:Email templates Any more questions, then come back here.--Aspro (talk) 19:54, 24 February 2015 (UTC)
Dan the Man might be able to help also, as he has done a OTRS successfully. It appears in the info box for his image under Permission File:Danprestup.jpg. --Aspro (talk) 20:12, 24 February 2015 (UTC)

Placement of attribution and license statment[edit]

Hello: If a book contains several articles from Wikipedia, should the attribution and license statement be placed as a footnote at the beginning of each wiki article, or should all attribution/license statements be placed in a separate section at the end of the book? Prsaucer1958 (talk) 20:06, 25 February 2015 (UTC)


Hi, I've been blocked on wikimedia because of copyright violation. I was oblivious about it: all images that are available on internet are not free. Would you kindly unblock me?? I want to upload a poster (which is availabe on google image) can I do that without violating copyright?? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Suman420 (talkcontribs) 13:50, 26 February 2015 (UTC)

I would suggest you read and become familiar with Free_content & Wikipedia:Copyrights. Then you should know how to upload images to Wikipedia without violating copyright. Then you will be able to explain why you consider 'this' poster is OK. Then we can reconsider the block.--Aspro (talk) 19:45, 26 February 2015 (UTC)