Wikivoyage talk:Non-free content

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Old discussion[edit]

Swept from

This is my first draft of the non-free content policy. Please review. Note that WMF is happy to help projects with their EDP so we may want to get their input. LtPowers 00:07, 9 September 2012 (UTC)

Your writing is clear. However, what I would like to know is whether this policy might expose Wikimedia to a lawsuit. This is the part that concerns me: you cannot take a free photo of the Cloud Gate sculpture in Chicago, because U.S. law allows an exception only for works of architecture, not works of art. The only non-free content allowed on the English TRAVELSITENAME is as follows:
   Brief textual excerpts from copyrighted media for illustrative or informative purposes
   Photographs of copyrighted artwork and architecture 
So we're allowing something forbidden by US law. Is "fair use" the basis for such an exemption? If so, that rationale should be included. If not, what is the basis for the exemption? (WV-en) Ikan Kekek 04:05, 9 September 2012 (UTC)
Yes, "fair use" is the basis for the exemption. I will attempt to make that clear. LtPowers 12:16, 9 September 2012 (UTC)
  • I think this looks great. We should have a WMF rep look over it, of course, but the most important thing is that it allows us to do what we really need to be able to do, and explains why. The how part seems to me the least important honestly ;) --Peter Talk 15:42, 9 September 2012 (UTC)
  • Support: I am no lawyer, but the proposed policy looks very reasonable and clear. No doubt some hidden problems will show up later, they usually do, but I would say this is good enough to go for now. Nice work. • • • Peter (Southwood) (talk): 05:31, 12 September 2012 (UTC)
  • Support: I am anything but lawyer, yet from my perspective the text is clear and appropriate for our goals. Atsirlin 11:39, 12 September 2012 (UTC)
  • Support: I also support this proposed policy, on the same basis as Peter and Atsirlin (I also am not a lawyer). (WV-en) Ikan Kekek 13:59, 12 September 2012 (UTC)
  • I just added a new clause; fairly minor, but I need to point it out. Acceptable? LtPowers 18:43, 12 September 2012 (UTC)
Looks alright, as far as I can tell. (WV-en) Ikan Kekek 02:51, 14 September 2012 (UTC)
I'm OK with the "contains" but is it always applicable to add free license for the rest of the image? Perhaps a standard licencing statement requiring the non-free content to be defined, and licensing the rest CC-by-sa would do it. Maybe this is what you meant. • • • Peter (Southwood) (talk): 05:35, 14 September 2012 (UTC)

"Fair use"[edit]

  • I've made a small change to the beginning of the paragraph explaining fair use exemptions, because it was not strictly correct before. The corresponding exemptions go by different names in other countries, e.g. w:fair dealing in the U.K., and can be much more limited in what they allow. And U.S. law is what matters here, since the WMF is based in the U.S. --Avenue (talk) 04:41, 14 November 2012 (UTC)
    • The text did not say the exception was called "Fair use" in all countries. It said that many countries have a fair use exception, which is true. LtPowers (talk) 14:31, 14 November 2012 (UTC)
      • Most English-speaking countries have freedom of panorama for artworks. It seems from the policy that the unfree images only will be unfree in two English-speaking countries (the United States and South Africa) and free in all other English-speaking countries. I don't see why a reference to fair dealing is necessary as a UK reuser wouldn't have to depend on fair dealing; photos of statues are permitted under UK freedom of panorama. --Stefan2 (talk) 19:38, 14 November 2012 (UTC)
        • I didn't insert any reference to fair dealing, and I don't think anyone has suggested doing so. My point was that the previous reference to many countries' law allowing fair use was arguably incorrect, mainly because what's allowed elsewhere is often much more limited than in the U.S., and that it's better to just mention the only law we need to concern ourselves with, i.e. U.S. law. (FWIW, Namibian law allows limited fair dealing but not freedom of panorama, for either architecture or artworks.) --Avenue (talk) 01:21, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Works which are free in the United States[edit]

Sometimes, a work is free in the United States but unfree in the source country. For example, buildings are not protected by copyright in the United States if they were completed before 1 December 1990, and artworks are not protected by copyright in the United States if they were installed before 1923. So for example the Centre Pompidou in Paris or the little mermaid statue in Copenhagen are in the public domain in the United States although they are copyrighted in their source countries. Also, United States provides freedom of panorama for architecture, but the law doesn't say anything about the location of the buildings, so it seems that you can take a photo of any copyrighted building and use the photo in the United States as long as the building is ordinarily visible from a public place. English Wikipedia allows such works in unrestricted quantities using w:Template:FoP-USonly and w:Template:PD-US-1923-abroad, but Commons doesn't accept the images because Commons only accepts images which are free in the source country. Would Wikivoyage also accept such images in unlimited quantities, or would the images still have to comply with the non-free policy? --Stefan2 (talk) 19:38, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

I'd vote yes, just out of personal preference. I think we'd all like to get away from image management as much as possible, so I don't see any reason to allow uploads that don't comply with the non-free policy. If you can't upload an image to Commons, and you can upload it here under our non-free policy, that's fine, but if it doesn't meet the policy, what use would we have for it? LtPowers (talk) 20:43, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

PROPOSED CHANGE: Replaceable media[edit]

The Foundation's resolution says: "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose...." I neglected to consider this when I drafted the policy, because our EDP is limited to photos of artwork and architecture -- works where the value is inherent in the item being photographed, and can't be replaced by a free equivalent. I failed to consider the possibility of artwork that serves a useful purpose in our articles, such as maps. A photograph of a copyrighted map is replaceable, because we can reasonably expect someone to upload a free map that serves the same purpose.

As such, I propose the following item be added to the EDP:

  1. Photographs of copyrighted artwork (such as maps) should not be uploaded where free images or text can serve the same purpose.

Please comment and approve the wording.

-- LtPowers (talk) 14:17, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

  • Support. The wording works fine for me. Texugo (talk) 19:15, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Support. Sounds reasonable. I'd tweak the language very slightly, to use "when" rather than "where," but to the same effect:
    1. Photographs of copyrighted artwork (such as maps) should not be uploaded when free images or text can serve the same purpose.
    Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:31, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
    • What about "if" as a compromise? Powers (talk) 22:12, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
      • "If" is totally fine. Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:25, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Support. -- Ryan • (talk) • 19:54, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Support belatedly. --Rschen7754 19:59, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

This has been done, but feel free to continue to weigh in. Powers (talk) 14:53, 16 February 2014 (UTC)


Pursuant to implementing this policy, I've created Template:Non-free image (and a helper template, Template:No license specified). I've placed the template on File:Sign Mammoth Hot Springs YNP Wyoming USA.JPG so you can see how it works. I welcome any and all improvements.

In addition, I think we need an additional template for use on these pages. It would be used to provide what information we have on the copyrighted work's name, creator, copyright holder, date of creation, date of publication, location, etc. If there is more than one copyrighted work in the photo, we can include the template multiple times. Per our policy, I am proposing we create such a template. Let me know if there are any objections.

-- LtPowers (talk) 21:11, 19 November 2012 (UTC)

Non-free userpage images[edit]

We have previously allowed userpage images, in particular "profile self-pics," to be uploaded without a free license. (There is some sense in that, as you might not want to see your face used to sell hygienic products or something like that.) Commons does not. Should we add an exemption for this? File:184156380.jpg is an example. --Peter Talk 00:23, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Use of a personal image in hygiene product advertising would still require a model release, so I don't think that's a reason to allow personal images with non-free licenses here. I think we should have as few images uploaded locally as possible - Commons has the tools and users to manage images better than we do, and we can better focus on travel writing when we're not policing image licensing. A user page image is a perk for those who want it, so asking someone to use a free license on the image doesn't seem at all unreasonable to me. -- Ryan • (talk) • 00:41, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
wmf:Resolution:Licensing policy says that "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose, such as is the case for almost all portraits of living notable individuals". Thus, it seems that the licensing policy explicitly disallows unfree user photos until the users die. To avoid a new rush for suicide, I propose that we also disallow unfree userphotos for deceased contributors. --Stefan2 (talk) 01:15, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
That sounds humane and prudent ;) --Peter Talk 03:58, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

License template[edit]

Recently, MGA73 created duplicate templates such as Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 (non-free). The only difference between this template and Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 is the category into which images tagged with the license are placed; it keeps non-free files from being categorized with free ones. I have a couple of concerns, however.

First, did we ever come to a consensus to categorize images by license in the first place?

Second, as near as I can tell, we shouldn't have any uploaded images that aren't non-free, so why do we need to keep separate free- and non-free categories? Shouldn't Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 be unused so long as we have Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 (non-free)?

Third, even if we did want separate templates and separate categories... can't the Template:Non-free image automatically add the "(non-free)" to the name of the license template being referenced? I don't think users are going to know to add the "(non-free)" themselves.

I'm just a bit confused here; can anyone help clarify? LtPowers (talk) 15:16, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

We are hosting some images locally that are free—I'm not sure if everyone agrees with that, though. The first example is DotM banners for the new main page, which are more convenient to host here because we can use our local admin rights to protect them during a feature (to prevent penis insertions) and to delete ones that need deleting. The second is Wikivoyage screenshots, which I suppose we should/could upload to Commons instead. Man, is it ever faster to upload files here, though... --Peter Talk 15:46, 16 March 2013 (UTC)
I duplicated the license because I'm trying to clean up images. Some are uploaded here and some are only description pages for files hosted on Commons.
I've tagged almost 600 files for speedy deletion but we still have a lot of files to check. If someone could help check and delete files in Category:Files with the same name on Wikimedia Commons it would be nice.
As I understand it the plan is only to host non-free files and by moving the non-free files to another category it is easier to see how many free files we have.
If someone can tweak Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 so it sends file to one category if is is inside the non-free template and another if it is not then it would be much easier. --MGA73 (talk) 17:12, 16 March 2013 (UTC)
I reviewed and deleted everything in Category:Files with the same name on Wikimedia Commons. -- Ryan • (talk) • 19:38, 16 March 2013 (UTC)
Thank you. Now we should go through all subcategories of Category:Wikivoyage files by copyright status one by one and check the files. --MGA73 (talk) 18:19, 17 March 2013 (UTC)

EDP must be minimal[edit]

The wmf:Resolution:Licensing policy says that "3. Such EDPs must be minimal. Their use, with limited exception, should be to illustrate historically significant events, to include identifying protected works such as logos, or to complement (within narrow limits) articles about copyrighted contemporary works.".

The current EDP says that "Photographs of copyrighted artwork and architecture must materially contribute to the quality..." but perhaps we could make it even more clear that the use of non-free files must be minimal.

I think it would be a good idea to ask the uploaders of non-free files to add a rationale to why it is important to the article to use a non-free file instead of a free one. If it is not possible to add such a rationale then we probably do not need the file.

Also I think that we should avoid non-free files in templates and banners. Example File:Chicago-banner2.jpg. --MGA73 (talk) 17:49, 15 May 2013 (UTC)

Our policy is already far more restrictive than en.wp. The same rationale applies to every image that is acceptable on Wikivoyage: That the copyrighted work contributes materially to the depiction of the destination in our travel guides. There are only so many different ways to say that, and it's silly to make people copy+paste it when they upload. Any image for which that rationale doesn't apply doesn't belong on Wikivoyage. I'm afraid I don't understand the rationale for avoiding photos of non-free works in banner images. In some countries, that would leave virtually nothing that could serve as a subject. LtPowers (talk) 19:17, 15 May 2013 (UTC)
I'm not native English but I agree that there may not be a big difference in "contributes materially" and the terms on English Wikipedia "its presence would significantly increase readers' understanding of the topic". But English Wikipedia also have a paragraph about "No free equivalent" (can't we find free images to illustrate the same?) and "Minimal extent of use" (use low res instead of high res).
If we take Chicago as an example. Do we need to see a photo of a copyrighted work to understand what Chicago is? If you look at the article on Wikipedia w:Chicago (and the one on Wikivoyage: Chicago) then I think that most readers should understand that Chicago is a city in the US, where in the US it is located and it's history etc. and I doubt that many readers would need a photo like File:Chicago-banner2.jpg before they understand.
If we take w:Eiffel Tower then it would be hard to understand without a photo or a drawing and the article of Paris is ofcourse much better with a photo of the tower. But if the tower was still copyrighted then I think that we could do without a photo of the tower in the article about Paris. --MGA73 (talk) 09:17, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia has to talk about free equivalents and minimal extent of use because they allow many more types of non-free content than we do. For example, they allow book covers. Since book covers are a two-dimensional work, showing high-resolution images of them in the encyclopedia could negatively affect the commercial value of the book or cover. So Wikipedia asks that the resolution be only just high enough to be able to read the cover clearly. But a book cover can only be used on an article about the book; they don't want people using them to illustrate other topics (like a math book cover being used to illustrate a mathematics concept). So they put in a rule about free equivalents -- you can't use a copyrighted poster or painting or drawing when it's possible for someone to convey the same concept with a free image. Likewise, there's no excuse for using a copyrighted image of a living person when someone can just go to a public event, take a photograph of the person, and license the photo freely.
None of this is an issue for Wikivoyage. We don't allow pictures of identifiable people. We don't use pictures of book covers or CD covers or movie posters. The only purpose of our EDP is to allow us to illustrate the important sights of a location the way any other travel guide does. Go to the store and look at a Chicago guidebook. Do you think they paid royalties to Anish Kapoor in order to publish a picture of Cloud Gate? No. They are using it under a fair use exemption for editorial works, and there's no reason we cannot do the same. We cannot have world-class guidebooks without having images showing copyrighted artworks and copyrighted architecture.
We would have to be careful with photographs of two-dimensional artworks -- making sure that they're not too high-res -- but those are very rare in our guides. Our main concern is with sculptures and buildings, and the "minimal use" provision is much more easily met (since a single photo is rarely enough to comprehend the entirety of a three-dimensional object).
I hope this answers your concerns. -- LtPowers (talk) 13:19, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
[edit conflict] The Bean in Chicago is one of the cities most famous and prominent attractions, despite only having been around since 2006. (That said, the particular banner you are referring to is not in use, so it can be deleted per our EDP.) The Eiffel Tower is obviously the principal symbol of Paris, so a travel guide without a picture of it would just be bizarre. Our mission is different from Wikipedia, and I realize that some Wikimedians think it's less important, but a travel guide does need to have pictures that show the city's main attractions. --Peter Talk 13:22, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
I think that Wikipedia's low-resolution requirement mainly is meant to prevent replacing the original market role of the work. For a 2D work, such as a painting, the original market role may include distributing high-quality copies of the work. However, for a 3D artwork, I think that the original market role mainly is distribution of high-quality 3D copies of the work, and public inspection of the 3D copy which is permanently installed. Wikivoyage only distributes 2D copies of 3D artworks. I would argue that distribution of 2D copies is part of the original market role of some very famous 3D artworks (such as the mermaid statue in Copenhagen) but that distribution of 2D copies of other 3D artworks is very uncommon. For a 3D artwork, the need for a low resolution may depend on the artwork.
Whether the EDP is minimal or not is another question. It is certainly minimal in that it doesn't accept certain kinds of works such as book covers.
I think that it is a good idea to compare Wikivoyage's EDP with that of Japanese Wikipedia (w:ja:WP:FOP). Japanese Wikipedia only accepts photos of certain artworks (the ones covered by a non-commercial restriction per Commons:COM:FOP#Japan), so in that sense it is very similar. There is a resolution requirement which says that the image should have at most 310,000 pixels. This is more than what is usual on English Wikipedia, but on the other hand, a photo of a statue obviously also shows some of the surroundings (meaning that not the entire image is unfree), so it makes sense to allow photos of statues to have a slightly higher resolution. The minimal restriction is very simple: it seems that Japanese Wikipedia doesn't have more restrictions than saying that any single article mustn't have more than three non-free images and that non-free images mustn't be used outside the main namespace (although the latter de facto doesn't seem to be enforced). --Stefan2 (talk) 13:54, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
I do not think that we could use arguments like "Others use it without paying..." :-)
You are right that a travel guide is different than Wikipedia so I guess it would be hard to avoid showing copyrighted works. But I still think it is a good idea to add a rationale on the photos and the rationale could be something like "The Bean in Chicago is one of the cities most famous and prominent attractions therefore it is important for Wikivoyage to show a photo of it.". That way we should limit the use to a minimum (asuming that photos of things that just look nice would not be acceptet).
As for the resolution I think we should set a max to avoid super deluxe mega high res photos. Perhaps we could also use panorama photos instead of close up photos to show the copyrighted works. --MGA73 (talk) 15:00, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
Fair use is partially about whether the use does any harm to the copyright holder, but the definition is a bit ambiguous, so it can differ a lot from case to case. I don't know whether the EDP of this project, or the EDP of English Wikipedia, follows the copyright law of the United States in all situations.
It says that an image "must materially contribute to the quality". If you list a rationale for the inclusion, then it is easier to tell if that is the case. I note that some projects, such as the English and Chinese Wikipedias, use rationales, whereas other projects, such as the French and Japanese Wikipedias, don't use rationales.
Another special thing with the minimal part of the EDP is that although these images are unfree in the United States, they are free in most other English-speaking countries such as the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, so the EDP is also minimal in the sense that the content only is unfree in some of the countries from which the content is accessed. --Stefan2 (talk) 15:52, 22 May 2013 (UTC)
The EDP states that users must justify the image's inclusion if challenged. I don't see any reason to pre-emptively require this justification. The result of doing so would be to have a bunch of images all with essentially the same rationale: "<name of work> is one of the city's most famous and prominent attractions therefore it is important for Wikivoyage to show a photo of it." Whom does that help? LtPowers (talk) 17:32, 22 May 2013 (UTC)

[outdent] This is a side issue, but LtPowers, please explain what you mean by "We don't allow pictures of identifiable people." Do you mean we don't allow pictures of internationally recognized celebrities? Because we certainly do allow many, many photos that include identifiable images of people in them - if the viewer knows who the people are. The only prohibition on images with people in them seems to be of snapshots that are posed photos of tourists in a particular setting. You took part in a recent discussion of a posed photo of a Zimbabwean witchdoctor in Talk:Africa, and here is the main point you made:

"Wikivoyage:Image policy only requests that we not include snapshots of tourists posing in front of landmarks and the like." Ikan Kekek (talk) 00:37, 23 May 2013 (UTC)

I was just trying to simplify things here. LtPowers (talk) 01:25, 23 May 2013 (UTC)
I think we shouldn't oversimplify things. Because I had read previous statements of that kind, I was under quite a mistaken impression of what the actual Wikivoyage policy toward people in images was, for quite a long time. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:49, 23 May 2013 (UTC)
This discussion was not about people in photos, so I didn't see the need to go into great detail. I was also misremembering our current policy, as the old policy on WT was subtly different: see here. I'm sorry that very little I do lately meets with your approval, but I ask you to be patient as I try to figure out what you'd like from me. LtPowers (talk) 14:48, 23 May 2013 (UTC)
Please don't take things personally. We disagree on some things and agree on others, but none of it is personal. All my best to you. Ikan Kekek (talk) 21:12, 23 May 2013 (UTC)

I'm not a law expert, but it does seem like we apply the fair use provisions too broadly. As far as I understand it, and the way Wikipedia applies it, is that fair use can only be called upon if there's critical commentary of the copyrighted artwork involved. For example, Chicago/Near West Side#Do shows a piece of artwork that is a nice illustration to the article, but there is no critical commentary of the artwork in question. The prose doesn't mention the name of the artwork and doesn't explain why it's interesting. The text can easily be read and understood without the image, so we can't place it based on fair use. And this is just one example, we have so many others (e.g. Baltimore#By_train)

The same applies to banners—we use banners as a nice illustration, but they generally miss a critical commentary of the copyrighted artwork in question. Fair use shouldn't be called upon just because it's a nice illustration, but should be complementary to the text. Because of their placement and purpose (far from text at the top), banners are generally unsuitable for fair use. Also, they can easily be replaced by a free image, so fair use does not apply here. Wikipedia states "Non-free images that reasonably can be replaced by free/libre images are not suitable for Wikipedia."). Globe-trotter (talk) 22:30, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

To your first point, Wikipedia's non-free use policy is more strict than the law requires. Ours is as well, but in a different way. We are a travel publication, not an encyclopedia, and so our purpose is more editorial than critical. Either editorial or critical use can be acceptable under fair use exemptions, to the best of my knowledge (though I am also not a law expert). To your second point, I'm afraid you've completely misunderstood what is meant by "replaceable". It doesn't mean "you can substitute an image of something else because the article doesn't need an image of this particular work"; it means "you can substitute a different image that achieves the same purpose". And in these cases, the purpose is to illustrate the work in question... thus, substituting an image of a different item doesn't achieve the same purpose. LtPowers (talk) 23:40, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

What about something like "While the use of fair-use images in banners is not impossible, it generally does not occur since freely-licensed images can generally be found that represent the area in question well. Note that copyrighted architecture, including city skylines, is covered under freedom of panorama legislation in the United States (where the Wikimedia servers are hosted) and in several other countries, and can be freely licensed." ? --Rschen7754 06:31, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

I'm not sure that makes a clear statement. If your position is that fair-use images should never be used in banners, please propose that as the new policy, especially in view of the discussion at Wikivoyage:Travellers' pub#wmf:Resolution:Licensing policy, which links to the WMF's policy on non-free content. Right now, your new language is merely an observation plus a clarification of "Freedom of panorama." Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:49, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
What about adding something along the lines of it being harder to come up with a sufficient legal rationale to use a non-free image for banners? Or is that still too weak? --Rschen7754 06:53, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I think that in order to know what form of words you should propose, you need to answer for yourself the question of whether you believe it could ever be justifiable under existing WMF policy to use a non-free image not covered by freedom of panorama in a pagebanner. Or, briefer version: You need to know clearly how you feel in order to tell others. Compromises can always be worked out later, if necessary, but say your piece. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:25, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, I don't think that fair-use images should ever be used in banners, and I can't think of a scenario where that would be necessary. But I'm skeptical of the community going for it, and I'm trying not to alienate people from the getgo, so I'm not proposing that right away. --Rschen7754 08:57, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I cannot endorse policy wording that encodes this incorrect interpretation of the "no free equivalent" provision. The "no free equivalent" provision of the Foundation resolution is intended to block scenarios like the following:
  1. I need a photo of Madonna. She has photos on her website, photos that look good and are professionally taken. Since they're made available for publicity purposes, I can take one of them to use in an article about the 2014 Grammy Award telecast, since she appeared on that telecast.
    • In this case, a "free equivalent" would be a freely licensed photograph of Madonna. It would not be a freely licensed photograph of Taylor Swift, even though they both appeared at the Grammys.
  2. I need to use a graph to illustrate the global warming trend. One of the most talked-about graphs is the "w:Hockey stick graph" from Mann, Bradley & Hughes, so I can take their graph from their paper and use in the article on global warming.
    • In this case, a "free equivalent" would be a newly constructed graph of the same data. The new graph displays the exact same information, but without infringing on the copyright of the original authors, so it's preferred and using the original is prohibited.
  3. I need to illustrate Cloud Gate in Chicago's Millennium Park because it's an iconic sight that tourists expect to see. Since Cloud Gate is copyrighted, and sculptures are not subject to the U.S. FoP laws, there's no way to take a free photo of it, so I can take any nice photo I want from the Web and use it under fair use.
    • This might be allowed on Wikipedia! But it is not allowed on Wikivoyage, because we consider an otherwise-freely-licensed photo of a copyrighted work more free than a copyrighted photo of a copyrighted work. Our EDP specifically says that "[t]he only non-free component of the photograph must be the copyrighted artwork or architecture in question."
I have not seen any evidence that the "no free equivalent" provision applies to accomplishing a similar purpose with an image of a completely different subject. A photograph of some other (free) sculpture in Chicago is not a substitute for a photograph of Cloud Gate, certainly not to the level of being considered "equivalent".
-- Powers (talk) 14:12, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
What does this have to do with banners? --Rschen7754 18:29, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
It speaks directly to the wording in your proposal: "since freely-licensed images can generally be found that represent the area in question well". Powers (talk) 20:09, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but your comments are pure speculation and soapboxing, and have little to do with the proposal at hand. The first two of your scenarios have nothing to do with writing a travel guide, anyway. --Rschen7754 01:09, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
The third one does. Please address it. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:26, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
I fail to see how the third one is relevant to my proposal. It seems like you're trying to read something into it that isn't there - just because I steal a photo from the Internet that happens to include the Eiffel Tower doesn't make it freely licensed, and I would expect everyone to know that. --Rschen7754 01:29, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
You didn't read the case of the Cloud Gate photo? Address that, please. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:30, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
I fail to see how the third one is relevant to my proposal. It seems like you're trying to read something into it that isn't there - just because I steal a photo from the Internet that happens to include Cloud Gate doesn't make it freely licensed, and I would expect everyone to know that. --Rschen7754 01:29, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
I'd like to think you aren't deliberately ignoring the issue: "I need to illustrate Cloud Gate in Chicago's Millennium Park because it's an iconic sight that tourists expect to see. Since Cloud Gate is copyrighted, and sculptures are not subject to the U.S. FoP laws, there's no way to take a free photo of it....I have not seen any evidence that the "no free equivalent" provision applies to accomplishing a similar purpose with an image of a completely different subject. A photograph of some other (free) sculpture in Chicago is not a substitute for a photograph of Cloud Gate, certainly not to the level of being considered "equivalent"."
Well, should it be used in a banner, no. Should it be used elsewhere in the article? Possibly, but that's not relevant to my proposal. --Rschen7754 02:03, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
And the reason why it shouldn't be used in a banner is that you assume the existence of an equally good substitute image for the purposes of a banner? Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:06, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
Yes, because it's Chicago, and because we actually have a banner for it. Now, do you have an actual scenario of a real Wikivoyage article where we need to use a fair-use banner? --Rschen7754 02:18, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
You still have not made a case for treating banner images differently from other images in the article. Powers (talk) 14:55, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
Can you please answer my question? --Rschen7754 18:52, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm sorry I don't have an encyclopedic recall of all of the banners on Wikivoyage. Browsing Special:NewImages, I see there's one on Baltimore/Midtown. Powers (talk) 01:49, 30 January 2014 (UTC)
Wikivoyage:Votes for deletion#File:Baltimore pennstation banner.jpg. --Rschen7754 03:55, 30 January 2014 (UTC)
I see. Silly me, I thought you were interested in discussing the issue rather than simply trolling for images to delete. Unfair play on your part making me do your searching for you. Powers (talk) 01:49, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I feel uncomfortable with this, too. You (Rschen) challenged people to find examples of copyrighted work not covered by freedom of panorama in banners, supposedly for the sake of discussing the issue, when all you really intend to do is delete all such instances without further discussion of what this site's policy is and why. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:58, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, if it was a legitimate use, I wouldn't have nominated it for deletion. And "without further discussion" - so Votes for deletion is not a discussion? If I really wanted "without further discussion", I would have deleted it with my admin tools - which I might have been justified in doing as a copyright violation, but I didn't think it would be uncontroversial. Finally, I think it would be more productive to bring the issue to a wider audience, besides the three of us; votes for deletion is a good way to do that. --Rschen7754 04:52, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
As I understand it, Vfd is not supposed to be the place for new reasons for deletion that are not part of consensus policies to be thrashed out. Furthermore, you've made clear that you don't believe there is any legitimate use for non-free items not covered by freedom of panorama in pagebanners, and it now seems that the only reason you challenged us to find any was not in order to show that there might be a reason to use such images in pagebanners, but merely so that you could nominate such banners for deletion, while you have yet to show to the satisfaction of some people you're in a discussion with that there is a clear policy difference between pagebanners and other photos in articles on this site. Do you see why that looks like bad faith on your part? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:35, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, if you had provided a compelling example, then no, I wouldn't have nominated it for deletion. On reflection, my nomination may have been hasty (though it might have ended up there eventually anyway), but in my defense, I have felt like I am being stonewalled by the same two editors (and surprisingly no more than two - interesting that nobody else has jumped into your defense, if your views are really community consensus), and gotten little rationale besides "because we say the image is essential as a banner to the article, thus it is fair use." Sometimes, one has to go big or go home. Do you understand why I nominated it? --Rschen7754 05:44, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
What you're saying is that you nominated it because it's not a compelling example, but I also doubt you'd find any example compelling, because you don't think any non-free items not covered by freedom of panorama should be in any pagebanners. I'm offended if you're saying I'm "stonewalling" you. Are you really making that kind of derogatory claim? If so, I don't think you understand how I work. I am not sure what my opinion is, but I also still don't really understand your opinion, which is why I argue - to draw you out, and also to draw LtPowers out about his opinion. Why would you consider it OK for non-banner photos of non-free items to be in articles and not OK for them to be in pagebanners? Maybe all photos of non-free items should be banned on this site? Why or why not? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:58, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, my opinion could be changed if you did provide a compelling example, of a place where virtually the only option was a non-free image, or go without a banner at all. But so far, "because we say the image is essential" doesn't cut it - subjective, for one. What is a place? What is a city? Is it the city hall? Is it the top attraction? Is it the major infrastructure? I could go on and on. And your intentions may not be to stonewall, but that's just what it's coming off to me as - if that is not your intention, then I apologize. "Maybe all photos of non-free items should be banned on this site?" is not something that I am advocating, and I would be reluctant to advocate for such a blanket rule without careful examination of the non-free images here. My concern about the article whose banner is now at AFD is that the article does not even talk about the statue itself, and the station is only 2-3 sentences of the actual article. Why is the banner of Penn Station? Why is it not of the Washington Monument, or the Francis Scott Key Monument? Was the choice of this image actually discussed anywhere, or was it deemed to be "essential" to the article by a "consensus" of one editor? In my opinion, Penn Station is a bit of a strange choice for the banner, even if the statue was completely out of the picture. If Penn Station really is the heart of Baltimore/Midtown, then maybe the article needs to be rewritten to reflect that.
Digging around last night, I did also find a similar picture in Baltimore. The inline use there makes me a little bit uncomfortable, as the statue isn't really mentioned in the text there either, but at least it is next to the snippet about Penn Station, and we are not trying to pass it off as the banner that represents Baltimore, when there are several other valid choices, and that some may even be better. --Rschen7754 06:12, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
My feeling is that it's worth having this discussion and understanding what we're doing and why. My purpose is not to "stonewall," and not much time has elapsed so far since you brought this topic up in the Pub. So getting back to the issue at hand: Your feeling is that if any other banner is possible, no non-free image not covered by freedom of panorama should be used for a pagebanner. Why would you not apply this same guideline to all other photos shown on Wikivoyage articles, thereby prohibiting all non-free images? What, from a policy standpoint, is the fundamental difference between a pagebanner and any other photo? Please answer both questions, so that I can understand your line of thinking, because I have yet to really understand it. Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:22, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, some Wikimedia sites do actually prohibit all non-free images, and disable local uploads entirely, because of the hassle they create. But can you respond to the points I have made about this particular article in question? My answers are contained in there. And honestly, this continual "What does policy say? What does policy say?" thing is unproductive; we're trying to change policy here, so using policy to prevent changes to policy is circular. --Rschen7754 06:27, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
You want to focus on a particular article, whereas I want to focus on the global policy, the rationale behind it, and then the ramifications of it. Because I don't think this particular article is the point at all, as you are simply opposed to non-free banners as a matter of policy, regardless of the specifics of the article in question; moreover, I wasn't the one who found the banner in question, nor do I have a clear opinion about it. So let's please focus on what you think should be allowed and why. Under what circumstances do you think non-free images should be allowed on this site? And when I ask you for a policy basis, please refer to the WMF policy on non-free images that you linked to in the thread in the Pub. Is my line of questioning making sense to you now? Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:40, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm trying to use this example to prove my point, and you are derailing the conversation. --Rschen7754 06:47, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I don't accept that this is a practical discussion about a single article. You want to change the rules of this site in such a way that you believe they will be more in compliance with WMF rules, as you understand them. I am very much open to that idea, but I don't think you have fully explained the basis for the distinction you're making between pagebanners and other photos. If you do, I think that following that, it would be great if a lot of people participated in a discussion of how to interpret these words: "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose." Perhaps your point of view is that an entirely different image has the "same purpose," since it's a pagebanner, too, but that a photo that specifically illustrates a non-free image can't be substituted by a photo of something different, because that would have a "different purpose." However, correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think I've seen any such argument from you, and therefore, it makes perfect sense for me to try to find out how far you'd like to extend your proposal, and on what basis. If you are unwilling to explain what your overall point of view is and why, and prefer to call my somewhat Socratic method of discussion "stonewalling" and "derailing," I will bow out of this discussion, but I think that would not be to the benefit of the site, if it's as urgent to deal with this issue as you think it is. Goodnight. Ikan Kekek (talk) 07:05, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I have now asked you three times, across several pages, to defend your claim about how objectively a train station can be considered to be the most important part of Baltimore/Midtown, as an example of how banners are chosen, and gotten no response. If that's not derailing, I don't know what it is. Rather than repeat myself for the next few days, I'm just not going to answer. --Rschen7754 07:09, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Show me where I made any such claim. Ikan Kekek (talk) 07:12, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
[1] While you may think transportation is important, a lot of people hate trains, and all forms of transportation, and wouldn't think a train station is more important than a means to an end. That's the whole point here: What is Paris? why must the Eiffel Tower be more important than the Louvre in Paris? What is Washington D.C.? Why must the U.S. Capitol be more important than the White House? All choices of a banner are subjective. And when it's subjective, it becomes awfully hard to fulfill "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose." That is the difference between that and an inline image of the Louvre, when we spend paragraphs talking about it and where it would be remiss to not include such an image. (And I have no clue on the copyright status of any of these buildings; I hope you can see the overall message.) --Rschen7754 07:18, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
[Edit conflict]To be precise, I said why it is an important image. I have never expressed the point of view that it is or is not the most important image. However, in your last post, you finally make a distinction that is clear to me. OK, so User:LtPowers, please explain how Rschen's argument isn't persuasive. Ikan Kekek (talk) 07:25, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm not comfortable with this being a two-party discussion with a go-between. My arguments on this site as of late have been notoriously and consistently unpersuasive; I'm wary of doing my point of view more harm than good. This really needs a wider discussion. Suffice to say that I feel Rschen is treating the "purpose" of the pagebanner to be "portraying the most important sight of the destination", while I feel a more accurate interpretation of the word is to suggest that the purpose of any image is to portray precisely what the image portrays. That may seem tautological, but it's not; a non-free chart can be replaced with a free one that serves the same purpose (because it displays the same data), and even a non-free photograph can be replaced by a free one showing the same subject, but if the photo is non-free because of the subject, there is no free alternative possible (because a photo of a different subject would not serve the same purpose). Powers (talk) 16:43, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Your point of view is also clear. I agree: We need a wider discussion. I would suggest that we start a new discussion by presenting precisely these two interpretations of the WMF policy language, and solicit wide comment. I'll take care of reframing this issue in a new thread and posting to "Requests for Comment" and the Pub later, if someone else doesn't do it first. Ikan Kekek (talk) 16:58, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

Distillation of the argument[edit]

Background: The issue at hand relates to how to interpret aspects of the wmf:Resolution:Licensing policy — specifically, the following language: "An EDP (Exemption Doctrine Policy, allowing images of copyrighted sights to be on pages of a website) may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose." (For more background, see discussions further up this page, but this would apply, for example, to photographs of copyrighted outdoor sculptures.)

Question at hand: The question is, in the case of pagebanners, does substituting an entirely different image serve the "same purpose," or is the "purpose" of any photo actually the depiction of the particular subject depicted therein? Or, as User:LtPowers summarizes above:

I feel Rschen is treating the "purpose" of the pagebanner to be "portraying the most important sight of the destination", while I feel a more accurate interpretation of the word is to suggest that the purpose of any image is to portray precisely what the image portrays.

What do you think? Given the language in the WMF Licensing Policy, is it necessary or appropriate to prohibit the use of images of copyrighted sculptures and the like based on User:Rschen7754's argument, or should pagebanners be governed by the same fair use argument we use for all other images, as User:LtPowers argues? Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:23, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

I'm in favor of restricting usage of anything where there are legal concerns to the greatest extent possible without compromising the utility of our guides, and thus would prefer not to see banners using images that could in any way be viewed as restricted. It's one thing to say that an image of the Bean is required to properly illustrate Chicago/Loop#Parks and monuments, it's another to say that an image of the Bean is required for a page banner of the same article since there are numerous images that would suffice to represent that area. We don't want to put re-users or uploaders in a position where they are going to have to deal with copyright concerns, and thus should stay as far away from those issues as possible without compromising the utility of our guides. -- Ryan • (talk) • 18:55, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm with Ryan on this.
In fact, I'd have no strong objection to a policy that said only Commons images could be used here, punting the whole question of legal restrictions, including fair use arguments, to the specialists. Pashley (talk) 22:41, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Me too. I also think the legal base for us as a /travel guide/ to use non-free content is relatively small, smaller than for Wikipedia or Wikinews. The simple truth is that the purpose of the large majority of our images is decorative; to give a feel for the location, to give an extra touch to our other content. That's especially true for a banner. I imagine there are a few instances where a particular image seems vital to understanding the guide. However, I really can't see much legal merit in an argument that a banner must have it, when we use a wide array of banners, in cases also rather abstract details etc. For me it's first of all about the free content spirit (I think we shouldn't want this) but of course we have to think about the legal implications too. I'm with Ryan and Pashley on this: I see no compelling reason to not stay clear of non-free content where-ever we can. I'd be perfectly happy with a general agreement not to use non-free images in banners, and would support a very reluctant use of non-free images elsewhere. JuliasTravels (talk) 22:46, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
For purposes of comparison, es.wikivoyage, like most other Spanish-language wikis, has only Commons images allowed. I have no idea how it works out for them though, and that's not necessarily something that I'm advocating. --Rschen7754 23:21, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

For transparency, I have asked for a WMF staffer from the legal department to comment, but it may be until next week before we have a response. [2] --Rschen7754 03:54, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Same arguments can be applied to any image uploaded under "fair use". There is no binding argument to include any image of copyrighted artwork into a travel guide (Lonely Planet is a good example of a successful travel guide having no pictures at all). Next step would be not to mention copyrighted artwork in the text, because it is copyrighted, and I think we are not too far from this "smart" decision. --Alexander (talk) 04:54, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Actually, my Lonely Planet guides all have pictures, even if they are in the color inserts to save money... --Rschen7754 05:28, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Early versions never had pictures. Neither electronic version has pictures, I guess. --Alexander (talk) 06:27, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, Alexander, I can't make out if you're being ironic or serious? Not mentioning copyrighted artwork in text? JuliasTravels (talk) 09:46, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
I don't know. Ask WMF legal-) And remember that the whole Wikivoyage project is a "trademark infringement"... --Alexander (talk) 10:33, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
If you could phrase your comments in a more constructive manner, that would be appreciated. --Rschen7754 10:38, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
I can think of one possible exception; the logo of a bus or metro company is something many travellers will need to recognise but it will generally be copyrighted. Including a photo of such a logo in a city's "get around" section would make perfect sense and I think that would be fair use or fair dealing under many legal systems. Pashley (talk) 13:56, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

There seems to be a misconception above: do you realize that prohibiting local uploads would prohibit us from using fair-use images at all? That means no pictures of Cloud Gate, no pictures of the Eiffel Tower at night, no pictures of Animal Kingdom's Tree of Life, no pictures of any modern buildings in countries without FoP protections?

For an example of a pagebanner that would almost certainly need a non-free image, how about Disneyland Paris. There's no FoP in France, so any photograph of just about anything in the park is going to have copyrighted elements in it.

We have the legal right and authorization from the Foundation to use these images, just like every other travel guide on the market. Why would you want to cripple our ability to depict a destination to the reader by removing the ability to use non-free images?

-- Powers (talk) 15:57, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

I can't address legal arguments, but from a practical point of view, this argument is clear and very good, and I hope those who have weighed in against using non-free images in pagebanners, or even in regular photos, will all address this.
What would you think of a compromise, whereby there would be a higher bar to using a non-free image in a pagebanner than there is now - a general agreement (not necessarily unanimous, but a supermajority consensus, as we're understanding the meaning of that now) that the image is essential to show what the place in question is like, and that any free image would not represent that place adequately? Or some other form of words that would make it more difficult but by no means impossible to use non-free images in pagebanners? Perhaps that isn't a higher bar, though? Ikan Kekek (talk) 16:11, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
I agree with this view. Whilst I don't think we should be banning anything at this point, I think a general tightening of the way that we use these images (particularly for 'non-essential' purposes) would be desirable. We need to make sure that our usage of such images is justified and based on more than just aesthetic concerns. --Nick talk 18:06, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Do you think that consensus on a talk page has any importance from the legal perspective? --Alexander (talk) 18:11, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, my opinion remains that if there is legal ambiguity we should err on the side of caution. The "legal right and authorization" from the WMF has the caveat that it only applies when we cannot expect someone to upload a freely-licensed alternative. The fact that people disagree about whether such an exemption should apply to page banners indicates that there is enough ambiguity that we are creating possible legal risk. A legal opinion one way or another would resolve that uncertainty, but absent that I believe we should not be using images where there are concerns. -- Ryan • (talk) • 18:24, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Which might mean no pagebanner for Eurodisney, et al., right? Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:26, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Not at all. The community here is more than creative enough to come up with a banner that doesn't include a copyrighted building or character - the nightly fireworks display, a Disney garden, a crowd at a parade, etc. The supposed choice between "non-free banner" and "no banner at all" is a false one - the actual choice is between the best banner we could possibly make or a lesser banner, but I think that is the constraint imposed on us in a world where copyright has perhaps become overly broad and lawyers overly aggressive. -- Ryan • (talk) • 18:38, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Ryan, I have mentioned that Wikivoyage itself is not unambiguous from legal viewpoint. We all did the right thing, but someone else decided to bring the case to the court. If we are so much afraid of legal risks, we should all sit at home and refrain from even going online. The legal risk related to any of the fair-use images is so minor that it never resulted in a single DMCA notice (at least, I did not find any). Even thousands of such images uploaded to Commons (against policy) are fine with everyone beyond a handful of picky users. Why should we bother? --Alexander (talk) 18:55, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
A propos: Commons:Category:Cloud Gate. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:02, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Most of those should be deleted. Powers (talk) 19:38, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Fireworks and garden displays are arguably copyrightable, especially in France where the lighting designer claims copyright over the lights on the Eiffel Tower. A crowd shot is pointless. What no one has made a case for is for treating banners differently from any other image in our articles. Why would we do this? Powers (talk) 19:36, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Regarding Ikan's compromise: current policy is that any use of a non-free image must be justified if challenged. Doesn't this requirement satisfy the desire to make sure that we're only using them when we need to? Powers (talk) 19:38, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
It seems somewhat general. It might be better to state that a non-free image may be used in a pagebanner only when there is a consensus that this image is necessary for an adequate depiction of the place in question.
In terms of the Commons photos and whether they should be deleted, nevertheless, it seems quite telling that there is an entire Commons category of Cloud Gate images. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:47, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
This one is even better. A category full of pictures and a warning saying "pictures in this category are not allowed". Few people on Commons have some (ambiguous) understanding of what is copyrighted and what is not. Most uploaders simply ignore this issue, and I am fully on their side. By the way, I know many banners that are stored on Commons, although they show copyrighted artwork (original pictures have been on Commons for years). So this discussion is quite funny from the very beginning. --Alexander (talk) 20:11, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Well, nothing is stopping people from nominating it for deletion and/or starting a discussion on Commons about it... --Rschen7754 20:26, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Well, we can always justify something by saying "I like it", but that does not mean that it would stand up in court. --Rschen7754 19:49, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
"I like it" is not the same as my proposed language of "a non-free image may be used in a pagebanner only when there is a consensus that this image is necessary for an adequate depiction of the place in question." That said, if WMF Legal says something that affects our policies, we will obviously need to follow their guidance. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:31, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
Well, I'm just saying that what we would need some guard against people saying that it is necessary just so that it can be considered fair use, when it is not actually necessary. --Rschen7754 04:48, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
Right. But the guard would be that in suspect cases, we can solicit wide comment with a posting to the Pub and Requests for Comment. We could even start an expedition to find and pass judgment on non-free images in pagebanners (and that might be needed regardless of the outcome of this thread). Based on the remarks in this thread, I believe that if we did adopt my proposal, it would be very hard indeed to achieve a consensus to support pagebanners composed of non-free images. However, it would not be impossible, and unless WMF Legal rules that in no case may a pagebanner be non-free, I don't think we should be more restrictive than we need to be. Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:18, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
I'm not sure where we talked about prohibiting local uploads? In any case that's not what I was thinking about. I think Ikan Kekek is on the right track here. Personally, I just think we should avoid non-free images where-ever possible for both principal and legal reasons. Ryan's argument about re-users is also a very valid one. Non-free material should be a real exception. However, if there are compelling reasons (a proper rationale) and no real alternatives, it should of course remain possible to include a few. Some Disney pictures in a whole travel article on Disney Land should easily qualify as fair use, also for us. I haven't looked into it, but pictures of the park itself (buildings etc.) are not even tagged as Fair Use on Wikipedia and are available on Commons as well. There are other relevant arguments as well: general rules of conduct for example (Disney is widely known to be lenient about their copyright as long as it's not used commercially, and it's common practice for travel agencies to use some images of their parks) and a proper response mechanism (if a copyright owner would object, we should be well-willing in addressing and replacing it). So yeah, reluctant and cautious remains the way to go as far as I'm concerned, but there's no reason to stop using them altogether. As for the banners, I find it a difficult call. I don't know US law enough to know if picture sizes make a difference (they do under several European ones). If you'd argue banners are no more decorative than other pictures, that might stand. I must say though, I'd be far more okay with a Disney banner (very hard to find a free alternative with the same effect) than I'd be with a train station in some suburb. We may not be able to expect someone to upload a free image of that copyrighted building, but we cán expect to find a free, alternative image of another object to complement the article. JuliasTravels (talk) 17:48, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes, Disney parks might be one of the few exceptions where a fair-use banner might have to be used. --Rschen7754 21:12, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
JuliasTravels, we already largely avoid non-free images; as Rschen has pointed out, such cases where we can only illustrate an important site with non-free photos are relatively rare. But we need to have the flexibility to do so. Fortunately, Foundation policy and U.S. law both grant us that flexibility.
I am reluctant to switch from our previous standard of needing to justify a use only if challenged, to requiring pre-clearance. The latter would slow down the development of our travel guides, and potentially allow a small contingent of editors to block any non-free use at all. (There are indeed editors within the movement who oppose any non-free use on WMF projects.) Powers (talk) 14:20, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
If we're really talking about a few exceptions only, I don't see how it would seriously "slow down the development of our travel guides". Making it a bit of extra trouble to use a non-free image does keep it from being the easy way out ;-) I'm not particularly hung up on pre-clearance though, as long as we're all in agreement that it should be a last resort and will intervene when people start taking it too lightly. The other proposal that started this thread is to require a (short but clear) rationale when uploading. That seems like a good idea too and would address some concerns. JuliasTravels (talk) 14:49, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
I wasn't proposing pre-clearance as such. Under my proposal, it would be possible for someone to post a non-free pagebanner, but it wouldn't remain up if no consensus developed that the image is necessary for an adequate depiction of the place in question. And while you might prefer current policy, Lt, if the alternative is to prohibit non-free pagebanners in all conceivable situations (and some that perhaps we haven't even conceived yet), perhaps you'd concede that my proposal is better. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:27, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Actually, to keep things clear: does anyone still want to make a case for an all round prohibition of fair use banners? As far as I can see we've all been convinced that there are indeed a few instances where fair use images might be needed, so I think we can take that ghastly alternative out of the equation ;-) I would still advocate a more narrow use though (Disney okay, e.g. a copyrighted trainstation image where there are other landmarks that could illustrate a place (even when they're slightly less photogenic: no). I also think we should require uploaders to provide a rationale, in order to adhere to WMF policy and the law. Any thoughts on that? JuliasTravels (talk) 23:58, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
+1 --Rschen7754 01:34, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
That sounds fine to me. Is there any objection to requiring a rationale from uploaders from anyone? If so, what is your objection? Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:10, 4 February 2014 (UTC)

Yes, I do have an objection. A one-fits-all rationale is as follows: "No free alternative available". And a similar counter-argument is "No, there is free alternative available". This is how the whole discussion about Baltimore banner goes. In my opinion, everyone concerned about fair-use banners must provide an alternative. Not vague words, but a real banner that can be weighed in. This will guarantee that an article gets a new banner rather than endless discussions on a talk page. --Alexander (talk) 07:49, 4 February 2014 (UTC)

No. Not having another banner available, where one could conceivably be found, does not absolve us of our legal responsibilities. --Rschen7754 08:09, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes, and this is a one-fits-all argument against any fair-use image, because a "conceivable alternative" is to have no image at all. --Alexander (talk) 08:29, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
@Alexander, first to clarify, which are you proposing now to be our general rule? An all round prohibition, or an obligation for anyone with objections to a fair use image to provide an alternative? JuliasTravels (talk) 09:37, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes, first find an alternative, then start a discussion. --Alexander (talk) 10:00, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
This moves in the entirely wrong direction. We should not be using "but you didn't fill out all the paperwork!" to shut down a discussion about whether an image is not a valid fair use rationale. --Rschen7754 10:07, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
The WMF resolution says "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose". I don't reasonably expect someone to upload the replacement unless this replacement is already available. --Alexander (talk) 10:20, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I understand. However, although I can see why that would be an easy way of dealing with the issue in individual cases, this cannot serve as the general rule since it doesn't live up to both the legal and the WMF terms of fair use. In theory, it would allow anyone to just quickly upload a whole bunch of copyrighted images and then saying: well too bad, if you don't like it, spend you day creating free alternatives for all. Reasonable expectation of a free alternative is an issue we can discuss, also per case; this is part of the rationale. But as far as copyright infringements go, all Wikimedia projects (including us) always put the burden of proof on the one who uploads. For good reason: the rationale is a requirement, first of all, and second: if someone uploads a copyrighted banner that doesn't meet the criteria for fair use, the fact that I cannot make banners does not take anything away from the legal problem that uploader ánd the WMF are facing. All if this is apart from the fact that -imho- this stand goes rather against the spirit of a free licensed travel guide. JuliasTravels (talk) 11:37, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I appreciate both sides of this argument. Alexander's point is very practical: If there are objections to a pagebanner, but no-one has created a possible alternative, if the decision is to delete, the result could be that an article would lack a banner for a long time. I don't think the creation of multiple non-free banners at once is the likely opposite case, as that would likely be quickly judged to be a series of nuisance or otherwise misguided edits and reverted en masse. It seems to me, once again, that we would want to take a middle path, which might mean leaving a non-free banner up for a few days while there is a search for a suitable alternative. I don't see this as a huge problem if (a) it doesn't last a long time and (b) it's highly unlikely that legal action will occur in the near term. Ikan Kekek (talk) 12:05, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I do appreciate the want for nice banners - I support it. I don't think it a huge advantage for that non-free banner to be up for a few days, but I could live with that in most cases, to allow discussion and help a search for alternatives. Where such an alternative exists, this is a de facto solution for that case. The point however remains, that whether or not an alternative free image can be found in the short run, is unfortunately legally irrelevant. The fact that no alternative is readily available alone does not make a non-free image okay - not for the law, and not for the WMF. It's only okay if the image itself lives up to both the reasonable expectation clause ánd the proper rationale for using it. So while it's fine to make this part of the case to case dealings around non-free banners, it cannot be the general rule. JuliasTravels (talk) 12:25, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Julia, I don't know how you decide what is legal and what is not. I simply read the resolution, clause 3. It says, "EDP must be minimal... An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose". If anyone uploads 10 images of the same copyrighted artwork, we kindly ask him/her to keep one. But this one image can stay here until an alternative is found. This is the current requirement from the WMF.
Next, US law gives no strict definition of fair use. Everything might be considered "fair use", unless the court decides it is a copyright violation. If you want to avoid this legal ambiguity, avoid fair-use images altogether. If you are bold, do whatever is best for this project. To the best of my knowledge, images of copyrighted artwork have never caused any legal problem here. --Alexander (talk) 12:40, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I agree that requiring a rationale from uploaders is pointless. The rationale for every non-free image we use is the same: "The copyrighted subject of this photograph is an important sight in <destination> and it helps the traveler to see what it looks like." Powers (talk) 13:48, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Let me rephrase, as I don't want to determine anything at all (leave alone legal matters ;-)). Yes it's a law with a lot of ambiguity and leeway for judges, and there are many factors that play a role. To the best of my knowledge, the question whether or not someone who objects to copyright infringement is personally able to provide a direct alternative is not the determining factor, usually. In any case I do object to that idea here, as it would simply silence anyone who's not able to crop good banners themselves. Whether a free alternative can be found is of course a factor, but still only if other requirements (a proper rationale, notably) is met. I'd be fine with avoiding them altogether though, especially in banners, but valid counter arguments have been raised. I'm not quite sure why you would only want to choose between those extremes. And again, besides any legal or WMF issues.. I still think we should only want non-free images if our guides would be significantly less useful without, also for the sake of re-use. For me, policy should reflect a wish to not use, with a few exceptions, rather than a careless "it's fine, unless there's a free alternative available". (@Powers, you're right - images need a rationale, it doesn't have to be written by the uploader and can be a standard text as long as it's valid). JuliasTravels (talk) 14:20, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
If you have a good picture and need someone to crop the banner, I will readily do it for you, Julia=) This takes 15 seconds. Finding a suitable picture may take hours, and someone has to take responsibility for doing that. Regarding the "wish to not use", I thought that this policy conveys it quite well. If you want to challenge a fair-use image, do it, but do it in a constructive manner, which for a page banner means offering an alternative. --Alexander (talk) 14:42, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I'm a bit disappointed you think me not-constructive on this :-/ In any case, although a friendly offer (and one I shall take you up on! ;-)) I find it beside the (general policy) point really. However, it's clear that you are happy the way things are. In my eyes it just doesn't address any of the issues that have been raised. JuliasTravels (talk) 16:11, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, I mean that this discussion was not very constructive from the beginning. And it becomes even more strange when people without first-hand knowledge of a destination discuss how its banner should look like. --Alexander (talk) 18:29, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Considering that thousands of pages currently have no banner, having one more won't break the site. --Rschen7754 19:06, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I think that a justification should be given at the time (or shortly after) a non-free banner is uploaded. It is much easier to note why something is at the time rather than pondering later. For instance Tokyo 2020 currently has Olympic flag Wikivoyage banner.jpg, which is on Commons. But this is the sort of image that might need to be stored locally, and I think would be easy to justify, especially today when I expect that many of the venues have yet to be built. But if this image is challenged in five years time, there might be a good selection of other images. We should only use non-free images for banners when there is a strong case for them, and the hurdle of having to provide a justification may deter some more doubtful use. If a strong justification (maybe several paragraphs long) is visible, then this may deter some copyright owners from raising objections, and gives something that can be sent straight back if the WMF receives an objection. It also is unreasonable to expect people objecting to banners on non-free grounds (rather than artistic grounds) to suggest alternatives. AlasdairW (talk) 23:17, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
As long as we're asking for justification, how about justifying singling out banners for this discussion? Powers (talk) 00:37, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
This has been explained ad nauseum on several pages by now. If you disagree with parts of the argument, or need further explanation, then please say so, but don't just say "this hasn't been justified", because it certainly has. --Rschen7754 01:20, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
I must have missed it. It certainly hasn't been addressed to the point of nausea. Above, I only see an assertion that there's a difference between a page banner and a picture of the Louvre placed inline next to its listing. What if the page banner showed the Louvre? Powers (talk) 18:12, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
Please see my last comment in the section preceding this one. --Rschen7754 18:42, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
I already did; why do you think I mentioned the Louvre? Powers (talk) 02:17, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
Well, then I shall ask why you do not think that the comment explains why banners should be treated differently than inline images? --Rschen7754 04:26, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
It seems to be based on discussion of the item pictured, but as I asked yesterday, what if the page banner showed the Louvre (on an article that discusses the museum farther down, one in which you would find an in-line image to be acceptable, and again stipulating that the Louvre image is necessarily non-free). Powers (talk) 13:12, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
No, because we do not have to use a picture of the Louvre to represent Paris, as there are certainly several other landmarks in the city that are iconic (such as the more well-known Eiffel Tower). Not even Paris/1st arrondissement uses a banner of the Louvre. --Rschen7754 20:01, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
I think that there are a couple of reasons for treating banners slightly differently from other images.
  • A non-free image will normally be next the listing for the site that it depicts, but it can be harder to see the link between the banner image and the feature of the city that justifies a non-free image.
  • If we have a listing for a sculpture, then there is not much choice of images to illustrate it - there is unlikely to be a free alternative image that makes the same point. But for a city banner there are often several potential subjects that would give usable banners, so if only one of these subjects would require a non-free image then we should record why it is the most suitable. AlasdairW (talk) 23:23, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
I believe current policy requires justification for such uses if challenged, but that applies to all non-free images, not just banners. So I guess I don't see the problem. Powers (talk) 17:56, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
I think what people are saying is that there needs to be a more tailored justification for the use of fair-use banners. --Rschen7754 21:05, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
More tailored than what? Since instituting the policy I'm not aware of any request for justification under the policy, so we'd be blazing new territory whether it was a banner or not. Powers (talk) 21:42, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

Non-textual material[edit]

Chinese train ticket.jpg

I think this definition in the current text may need broadening to include things that are not text or excerpts.

"Brief textual excerpts from copyrighted media for illustrative or informative purposes."

For example, the illustration to the right is used at China#Train_tickets. It is clearly useful to travellers and I think it is probably fair use, but it is not clear that current policy covers it. Another example would be the logo for a city's metro company, almost certainly copyrighted but something we want to provide for travellers and probably fair use. Pashley (talk) 13:36, 15 February 2014 (UTC)

I agree. If we couldn't fairly use these kinds of images, our ability to serve the traveller would be seriously damaged. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:35, 15 February 2014 (UTC)

wmf:Resolution:Licensing policy[edit]

Swept in from the pub

Just found this on foundationwiki, and it addresses the fair use issues discussed earlier. --Rschen7754 07:39, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

The Licensing Resolution was taken into account when our EDP was drafted. Powers (talk) 14:52, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
It certainly does not allow the use of fair-use images in banners, however. --Rschen7754 18:36, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Taking into account the unique nature of travel guide writing, which was not on the horizon when the resolution was drafted, I believe our EDP meets the spirit of the resolution. Your opinion that it does not has been well documented, but I'm not sure your continuing to harp on it is going to be very productive. Powers (talk) 00:37, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Why do I care so much and "continu[e] to harp on it?" Because it violates general Wikimedia policy. "An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose." Can you please explain how you cannot reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose? --Rschen7754 00:48, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Is there any possibility that we could get an exemption from that policy? It would suck to have to avoid the skyline of Doha and the like in pagebanners. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:42, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
A Doha skyline appears to be hosted on Commons (File:Doha montage.jpg) without issue, and Commons does not allow fair use at all - so I think that's fine. But no, in general we cannot ask for exemptions from something decided by the WMF Board (which governs even the WMF staff). --Rschen7754 01:57, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
As you well know, Rschen, the explanation lies in our different interpretations of the word "purpose". If you see the purpose of our banners as "decoration", then obviously there are any number of ways to decorate our pages with free content. But the purpose of our banners goes beyond that. In fact, I don't see any reason to make a distinction between the banners and any other image in our articles. Just like any image in our articles, the banner images present important sights and locations relevant to the destination for purposes of identification, illustration, and/or commentary. The same rationales that apply to all of our non-free images apply just as much to non-free banners. You have yet to make any sort of case for why we should treat them differently based solely on where on the page they're located. Powers (talk) 02:41, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
So now it's okay to change the definition of words to suit our purposes?
There are many possible valid choices of relevant images to use for a banner. I see no reason why we have to choose banners that are fair use images. --Rschen7754 02:48, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
It sounds to me like Commons let one get through the cracks. That said, Rschen, I think that since you are so concerned about this, it might be good to communicate directly with a member of the WMF Board and see if that member could spare the time to make a comment here, since it seems like that may be necessary to convince other Wikivoyagers (whether it should be necessary is another question). Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:03, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Definitely more than one: commons:Category:Skylines by city. And I agree that having to contact WMF or WMF Board should be unnecessary: "This policy is approved by the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees to apply to all Wikimedia projects. It may not be circumvented, eroded, or ignored by local policies." --Rschen7754 03:13, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I think there's a logical flaw in your approach. You cite the fact that Commons allowed fair use banners as a reason they're OK, but you figure that Wikivoyage is in violation. It seems to me that both sites are in violation. I don't like this policy, but if it's binding, it's binding on both sites. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:20, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
The flaw is that you're assuming that skylines are under copyright. --Rschen7754 03:21, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
One or more buildings is under copyright, but is allowed as part of the image per fair use. Do I have that wrong? Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:27, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Not exactly - see commons:Commons:Freedom of panorama. That generally covers all buildings in the US, but not sculptures, for example. --Rschen7754 03:31, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
[Edit conflict]Also, I'm not sure your argument about the language in the linked policy is fully convincing: "As of March 23, 2007, all new media uploaded under unacceptable licenses (as defined above) and lacking an exemption rationale should be deleted." This site has an exemption rationale. I think your argument turns on the meaning of "minimal" here:
"Such EDPs must be minimal. Their use, with limited exception, should be to illustrate historically significant events, to include identifying protected works such as logos, or to complement (within narrow limits) articles about copyrighted contemporary works. An EDP may not allow material where we can reasonably expect someone to upload a freely licensed file for the same purpose, such as is the case for almost all portraits of living notable individuals. Any content used under an EDP must be replaced with a freely licensed work whenever one is available which will serve the same educational purpose."
We indeed addressed this in discussions of our EDP. Part of the argument is that the replacement of pagebanners not containing copyrighted sights which define a place indeed does not serve the same educational purpose. And as I recall, the argument was that this was "minimal" (as in the sense of "the minimum possible") to illustrate a place.
Maybe you should go back to the original thread and make the argument in context, if indeed it's a new one (and I think it is not new).
P.S. based on your new edit: Doha is not in the US. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:36, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, the WMF servers are located in the US, and of course you have to abide by the copyright laws of your own jurisdiction, but beyond that, even if Qatar believes that it's a copyright violation, not much Qatar can do. And I don't think the URAA would apply here. So I think that some of your definition of "fair use" here can justifiably be considered to be free content.
What I am referring to is using copyrighted artwork, or a certain statue, etc. as a page banner, and that is what is problematic. --Rschen7754 03:51, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Please explain the policy basis for your distinction between pagebanners and other images on pages. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:06, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I already have; we have a lot of images to choose from to come up with a banner, thus failing "minimal". At Wikivoyage talk:Non-free content I also see several concerns from Commons regulars, which leads me to thinking that this project is not correct in its application or definition of fair use. --Rschen7754 04:10, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I don't think that explains how a pagebanner is fundamentally different from any other photo in an article. What do you consider the policy difference to be? Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:30, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, if we're discussing a certain statue in a section, there's really not a way to get a freely licensed picture of it without invoking fair use. If we did articles on statues, then it might be an appropriate article to have the statue as a banner. But we don't Apparently some Wikivoyages do have them on individual sites, which I think is a mistake, but that's a tangent.... I honestly can't think of any articles where a fair use banner would be the only justifiable solution. We've handled the skyline issue, and in Paris the Eiffel Tower is well out of copyright anyway. Ditto with the famous monument in Lucerne. --Rschen7754 04:38, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I still don't think you've clearly explained the policy difference between having a thumbnail of such a statue or other copyrighted image in the body of an article vs. having one in or as the pagebanner. What is the policy difference? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:07, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I've explained it several times by now; I just don't think that you agree with it. If we're discussing a famous statue in Paris that happens to be under copyright at length, then it makes sense to include a picture of it right next to the description. But to use it as the banner for Paris? Why, when there are plenty of other choices? Keep in mind that a thumbnail is low-resolution, whereas a banner is not. --Rschen7754 05:13, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
OK, the differences in resolution could be a policy issue, and that's the first thing that's seemed to rise to the level of policy to me, as I don't think claims that "any other banner could do just as well" are very persuasive, as banners tend to be picked specifically because they're for any number of reasons the best lead photo for a given article.
Your turn, User:LtPowers and anyone else who disagrees with User:Rschen7754's interpretation of the linked policy in regard to pagebanners, specifically. Please explain why he's wrong. Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:34, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, perhaps you can answer a question for me: is there any article that either uses a fair use image as a banner, or should be using a fair use image as a banner? Keep in mind that freedom of panorama is not fair use, and is actually freely licensed. --Rschen7754 05:36, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I don't know, and if there is no such article, why are we even having this discussion? If you just want to change the wording of the policy and it's not urgent because there is no current deviation from your proposed new policy, why didn't you just suggest it in the preexisting thread? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:40, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

(outdent) That's my point: there really is no scenario where we would actually do this. Thus, I don't know why we keep insisting that using fair use images in banners is allowed, when we would defacto never do this. As to why it came up, it came up when admin(s) insisted that fair use banners were perfectly acceptable during the Wikidata banner discussion. --Rschen7754 05:45, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

I get it. So now that I, at least, get your point, why don't you propose a change to the language at Wikivoyage talk:Non-free content? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:58, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Done. I've tried to stay fairly neutral on this, not cutting off fair-use images in banners entirely if we ever do discover a scenario where that is the only reasonable option. --Rschen7754 06:33, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps too neutral, but we can continue this discussion at Wikivoyage talk:Non-free content. Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:50, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

Just for the record, but the reason the Doha skyline (and other skylines in countries without FoP protections) is allowed on Commons has absolutely nothing to do with the U.S. Freedom of Panorama provisions. Commons policy is to require that the media be free both in the U.S. and in the subject country. The rationale Commons uses to allow skylines is de minimis. Since each building pictured in the skyline has its own copyright, and each individual building only occupies a small portion of the full skyline image, the infringement on any individual copyright holder is minimal. That's why skylines are allowed on Commons, not because of U.S. law. Powers (talk) 13:55, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

Actually, according to commons:Commons:Licensing: "The "country of origin" of a work is generally the country where the work was first published." --Rschen7754 18:33, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Yes, and in the case of buildings, that's usually the country in which they're located, don't you think? Powers (talk) 20:05, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

[Unindent]: I have attempted to summarize the argument at Wikivoyage talk:Non-free content#Distillation of the argument. Right now, it has been just an argument between the opposing positions of User:Rschen7754 and User talk:LtPowers, with discussion also from me. We need much wider participation in this discussion, because on the one hand, if we restrict our fair use too much, that could have adverse effects on the site, but on the other hand, if we are really out of compliance with fair use, we could expose ourselves to legal action. Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:28, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

I don't think there's any question that non-free banners can be justified under United States fair use exemptions. The question at hand is whether they meet the spirit and/or letter of the WMF's non-free media resolution. Powers (talk) 15:19, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
What makes you so confident about the state of fair use law? Ikan Kekek (talk) 15:51, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
The simple fact that other travel guides do it without consequence. Powers (talk) 19:31, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
If so, that does constitute evidence. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:49, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Just because other people break the law and don't get caught doesn't mean that we should do it too... --Rschen7754 19:51, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Any basis for the allegation that they're "breaking the law"? A mass-market printed guide would likely check everything before going to press in order to avoid having to pulp tens of thousands of paper books later. K7L (talk) 20:18, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
Or that they're publishing these fair-use images in the first place. --Rschen7754 20:26, 1 February 2014 (UTC)
A copyright not enforced ceases to have legal status as such, so the fact (if it's a fact) that no-one is going after claimed fair use on this kind of site could easily be seen as indicating a lack of claim of copyright violation. Copyright law is not independent of enforcement of such through lawsuits, if I understand the law correctly (and as I'm not a lawyer, I might not). Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:25, 2 February 2014 (UTC)
"A copyright not enforced ceases to have legal status as such" - says who? I think you may be confusing trademark and copyright law. It certainly doesn't work that way here in New Zealand. --118.93nzp (talk) 17:13, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps I am indeed confusing copyright with trademark, as what I had in mind was Kleenex in the US. Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:52, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Kleenex™ is a different beast... it's not an abandoned trademark due to non-use but a w:genericised trademark, where the term has been used so widely that it has become the dictionary word in the English language generically - pretty much an opposite extreme. Trademarks also have to be renewed at fifteen-year intervals (length may vary by country), a requirement which no longer exists for copyright. Conversely, a trademark can live forever just by repeatedly renewing it, while copyright outlives the work's authors by a fixed number of years. There are problems with copyright law creating "orphan works" (the authors are nowhere to be found, but the copyright lives on so no one can use the content) and copyrights on out-of-print materials. It gets particularly annoying when a length of copyright term intended originally for literary works is applied to computer software, where the product is abandonware and without the programme the obsolete hardware cannot run. K7L (talk) 21:40, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Can I add the 'Mascot' and 'Commemorative Coin' of Pyeongchang 2018?[edit]

Swept in from the pub

In Olympic page, it would be better to add some mascot or commemorative coin which represent this big event. It could be interesting for someone who has an interest to Pyeongchang2018 and has a hobby to collect memento. There are some introduction of these on Official Pyeongchang 2018's site. I want to know about other people's thought to this idea.--Oh Joonseok (talk) 07:36, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

Sure, as long as the image used complies with creative commons license. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 09:02, 10 October 2016 (UTC)
Yes, thanks to our Exemption Doctrine Policy, which allows "fair use" of otherwise free photos of some non-free artwork (and architecture). Such images cannot be uploaded to Commons, but have to be uploaded locally on Wikivoyage, unless the mascot or coin is free, which I doubt. --LPfi (talk) 10:50, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

Can I copy the images from this to wikivoyage? --Oh Joonseok (talk) 07:45, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

That page says "Copyright by The PyeongChang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games" so I would assume not. Reading through their brand protection page seems to suggest even fair use is not allowed. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 09:18, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
Fair use should be allowed regardless of the copyright owner. The brand protection page seems to be about trademark rights, which are unrelated to copyright. Essentially the law and the linked page want to ensure a page of ours is not mistaken for an official Olympic Games page – and we should anyway not use the symbols in such a way.
However, WMF and our EDP (linked above) require that the photo itself be free, and any material on the official pages are unlikely to be (except possible historic images). Somebody has to take a good photo of the mascot, the coin or whatever symbol we want to use, and publish it under a free licence (and there should be a note about the underlying unfree work).
--LPfi (talk) 11:25, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
LPfi, thank you for your excellent explanation of our EDP. I was afraid I had written it so poorly no one else could understand it. =) Powers (talk) 20:43, 13 October 2016 (UTC)