Wikipedia:Media copyright questions

Media copyright questions

Welcome to the Media Copyright Questions page, a place for help with image copyrights, tagging, non-free content, and related questions. For all other questions please see Wikipedia:Questions.

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:File 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 an acceptable Creative Commons or other free 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.; {{Cc-by-4.0}}), 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 Publish changes.
  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 start a new discussion" link below.
  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.

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Image Licensing for Heather Zurich Wikipedia PageEdit

I have received an email stating that there are issues with the images I placed on the Heather Zurich page back in the 2009/10/11 time period. All three images were properly submitted to the permissions email and accepted by the permission department at Wikipedia. I still have the email responses. Two of the images were third party provided with their permissions and the third was a picture I created myself. What is it that is being asked for now? Your help would be appreciated.

Jrnhoops (talk) 15:50, 26 January 2023 (UTC)

Hi Jrnhoops. Assuming you're asking about the images currently being used in Heather Zurich, I don't see any indication where they've been nominated or otherwise tagged for deletion. I don't know who sent you that email (please don't post that information here per WP:OUTING), but File:HZurichWC5.jpg, File:HZurichAA.jpg and File:Heather Zurich (2).jpg seem OK, at least to me. Perhaps you're mistaking the deletion notice at the top of the article for something related to the images used in the article? The article has been nominated for deletion, but the reasons why have nothing to do with the licensing of the files being used in the article. Since the three files were uploaded to Commons, there's not much that anyone here on English Wikipedia can do about them anyway; however, since there's nothing posted about them at c:User talk:Jrnhoops and nothing to indicate they've been nominated or tagged for deletion on their respective file pages, I don't think you need to worry about them. You might, though, want to take a look at MOS:CAPTION because that's one thing related to the files that is pertinent to their use in the article. It's not a reason for deleting the files, but it's certainly something that can be fixed. -- Marchjuly (talk) 01:53, 27 January 2023 (UTC)
I must apologize. The three issues stated in the c:User talk:Jrnhoops page were indeed dated 2009/2010/2011 when the images were posted and thus I took care of them then. Seeing them again (along with the new nomination for article deletion) confused me into thinking it was something new. Thanks for putting me straight. Jrnhoops (talk) 16:31, 27 January 2023 (UTC)

Helen Hooker imageEdit

Hello, that person's article: contains this image: Helen_Hooker.jpg

In response to GA feedback, I added it to the 'Ernie O'Malley' (her husband's) page to lessen the effect of a "wall of prose":

But a bot has removed it from there on account of no fair use rationale.

How can it appear on one but not the other?

Someone, not me, uploaded it previously. Is it not suitable for use on Wiki?

Thanks, Billsmith60 (talk) 21:46, 26 January 2023 (UTC)

@Billsmith60 As the fair-use rationale on the image page says, it's use is acceptable in the article on Helen Hooker. That doesn't mean it's use anywhere else is ok unless you can establish it meets all 10 criteria of WP:Non-free content criteria. The English Wikipedia non-free content policy is deliberately harsh to keep the amount of non-free content to a minimum. It's very unlikely you could make a case for including the image on the page about O'Malley as readers can click through to the article on Hooker if they want to know what she looked like. Nthep (talk) 21:58, 26 January 2023 (UTC)
Hi Billsmith60. I agree with the assessment given above by Nthep in that it would be quite harder to justify an additional non-free use of this image in the article about O'Malley. For reference, the bot that removed the file did so for non-free content use criterion 10c reasons. As explained in WP:NFC#Implementation and WP:NFCCE, a non-free file requires two things: (1) an appropriate copyright license and (2) a separate, specific non-free use rationale for each use of the file. In most cases, a single copyright license is sufficient for policy reasons, but a rationale needs to be provided for each use of the file, regardless of whether the file is used multiple times in the same article or being used in different articles. That's what that particular bot looks for and removes files from articles lacking the required rationale. The bot, however, can only determine whether there's a rationale and not whether there's a valid rationale. That's where human file reviewers enter the picture. A rationale needs to satisfy all ten WP:NFCCP: just satisfying one or some isn't sufficient per WP:JUSTONE. So, even if you added a rationale just to stop the bot from removing the file, it's unlikely a consensus could be established to allow this type of non-free use and the file would eventually be removed by an administrator, and it would make no difference as to whether the O'Malley article eventually is upgraded to GA-status as explained WP:ITSGA. So,if you're looking for images to eliminate some white space in the article, you will either need to use some freely licensed or public domain (PD) images from Commons or find a non-free one that clearly satisfies all ten NFCCP. One thing about Helen Hooker is that she was born in 1905 which means you might possibly be able to find an image of her that has already entered into the PD. As explained in c:COM:HIRTLE, all photos created by a known author which were first published prior to Janaury 1, 1928, are now considered to be within the PD. So, if you could find such a photo of Hooker, then not only would you be able to use it in the O'Malley article, but it could replace the non-free one currently be used in the Hooker article. If the description of the non-free one currently being used is accurate, that photo will also become PD in a few years, but one that's currenty PD would still be better for Wikipedia's purposes. -- Marchjuly (talk) 02:18, 27 January 2023 (UTC)

  You are invited to join the discussion at Talk:Attack on Paul Pelosi § Adding the 911 call recording and bodycam video to the article. – Anne drew 16:44, 28 January 2023 (UTC)

Official portraits of elected officials in BotswanaEdit

Would I be able to use the official portraits listed on the Parliament of Botswana website in the articles for each individual? To my knowledge, there is no copyright exception in Botswana for government works. A few already have other images in their articles, but for the rest, could they be used with a fair use rationale? I have virtually no experience uploading or using fair use images. Thebiguglyalien (talk) 01:43, 30 January 2023 (UTC)

Hello, Thebiguglyalien. According to WP:NFCI #10, use of non-free images is not permitted for living people. Cullen328 (talk) 01:53, 30 January 2023 (UTC)
Thank you, that answers that. Looks like they'll have to exist faceless on Wikipedia for a while longer. Thebiguglyalien (talk) 02:00, 30 January 2023 (UTC)
Hi Thebiguglyalien. Fair use content and Wikipedia's version of it called non-free content are not exactly the same, and Wikipedia's non-free content use policy is much more restrictive. Wikipedia's policy pretty much never allows non-free content to be used in cases where freely licensed or public domain content which can be used for essentially the same encyclopedic purpose either already exists or can be reasonably expected to be created if it doesn't already exist. For this reason, non-free images of still living persons are pretty much never allowed per non-free content use criterion #1 (see also WP:FREER and item of 1 of WP:NFC#UUI because it's almost always considered reasonable to expect that a freely license or public domain image can either be created or found to serve the same encyclopedic purpose as any non-free one. Even if a free image doesn't already exist, it's reasonable to expect that one could be created at some point by taking a new photograph of the person. So, if any of those parliment members are still living, a non-free image of them is almost certainly not going to be allowed. If they are deceased, then the possibility of using a non-free one does increase, but it still needs to be demonstrated that the use of the file satisfies all ten non-free content use criteria each time the file is used anywhere on Wikipedia. Finally, as for the other images you mentioned being used in other articles, not all image uses are exactly the same and it's hard to assess them without know which images you're referring to and how they're being used. In many cases, particularly for non-free images, a file might be being used in a way that doesn't comply with relevant policy, but nobody has noticed that yet. -- Marchjuly (talk) 02:06, 30 January 2023 (UTC)

Photo of Rafael NadalEdit

I don't know how to put a license, please help — Preceding unsigned comment added by Gyroscopical (talkcontribs) 06:33, 30 January 2023 (UTC)

Hi Gyroscopical. Are you the photographer who took that particular photo of Nadal or for some reason own the photo's copyright? If the answer to each of those questions is "no", there pretty much no way for this photo to be hosted by Wikipedia and you should simply just let it be deleted in a few days. In other words, there's no copyright license that anyone could add to the file's page that it would make it OK to use anywhere on Wikipedia without first obtaining the WP:PERMISSION of the copyright holder of the photo. -- Marchjuly (talk) 07:30, 30 January 2023 (UTC)
deleted as copyvio. Nthep (talk) 16:30, 30 January 2023 (UTC)

Bot removed book cover written by the author that is already in Wikipedia!Edit

JJMC89 bot

Removed WP:NFCC violation(s). No valid non-free use rationale for this page.

Bot is removing image from gallery of the author's book (cover). The image is already published on Wikipedia. New Goloplo (talk) 08:52, 31 January 2023 (UTC)

@New Goloplo the bot is doing precisely what it is set up to do. Wikipedia has a very strict non-free content policy designed to keep the amount of non-free material as low as possible. Just because an image meets the criteria for use in one article is not carte blanche for its use anywhere else. Every separate use requires a separate rationale to show that the specific use meets the criteria. The book cover File:The Carnivorous Plants (1989).jpg has a rationale explaining its use in the article on the book but lacks a rationale explaing it's use in the article on the author. That is why the bot removed the image. Nthep (talk) 09:21, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
@Nthep thank you. Any way to add the book cover to the Author article? I will try to take a photo of the cover, I think this should be accepted.New Goloplo (talk) 11:58, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
@New Goloplo Doubtful for the same reasons that the use of File:The extraordinary story of the apple.jpeg and File:The story of apple book.jpeg in the Barrie Juniper are being disputed - the context isn't being established; the reader doesn't need to see pictures of the book covers to know he wrote the books.
Taking a picture of a book cover won't get around the issue, the photograph may be yours but the subject of the photograph is still a copyrighted item - so it's still non-free content. Nthep (talk) 12:35, 31 January 2023 (UTC)

Berkshire Black BearsEdit


The file File:BBBearslogo.png currently only has rationale for the New Haven County Cutters article, but I wanted to use it for the Berkshire Black Bears article. What would be the best way of extending its rationale so that it may be used in the Berkshire Black Bears article?

ATechnicalDifficulty (talk) 01:20, 2 February 2023 (UTC)

Hi ATechnicalDifficulty. If Berkshire Black Bears is the same team as New Haven County Cutters#Berkshire Black Bears, then there some good news and some bad news depending on your persepctive. The good news is that it should be OK to add the file to the main infobox of the stand-alone article about the Bears. Just add a new non-free use rationale for that particular use to the file's page, and then add the file to the main infobox. You can use the template {{Non-free use rationale logo}} to do this if you want.
The bad news (at least in my opinion) is that there's no realy justification for using the file in the Cutters article per WP:NFC#Number of items and WP:FREER, particularly since if it's going to be being used in the article about the Bears. The rationale for that use isn't really valid and the file should be removed from that article. FWIW, the same could also be said for File:MassachusettsMadDogs.png being used in the article about the Cutters, but for slightly different reasons. Even though no stand-alone article about the Mad Dogs currently exists, there are problems with the file's non-free use related to WP:NFC#cite_note-4 and WP:NFC#CS. If these problems can't be resolved, a consensus in favor of using the file in that way is going to be hard to establish. -- Marchjuly (talk) 01:37, 2 February 2023 (UTC)


Based on the precedents at c:Commons:Threshold of originality#United States would not this and this iteration of the Press Your Luck logo fall under {{PD-textlogo}}? — Fourthords | =Λ= | 16:08, 2 February 2023 (UTC)