Today we got a nice new image on the English Wikipedia--see [[Dennis Johnson]], a star of the NBA, who died recently. The image has a story, and the story has a moral. I want to tell it.
The creator is an established sports photographer who has worked for the NBA professional as a photographer. He is also one of the many thousands of uknown (to us) fans of Wikipedia who visit teh site regularly. When Johnson died, he went to the article, and noticed there was no picture, so he decided to donate one that he took. He called the office to ask how to do it.
After speaking with him briefly, I realized that we have a potential treasure trove of FREE images here, which he was willing and eager to share with us, from the NBA and many other areas. I asked Greg Maxwell to speak with him about licensing, and the rest is history. He selected an image and released it under the GFDL license. Hopefully, there will be more to come.
As for the moral of the story: we were missing an image, and someone decided to release one of his own--a high quality professional image at that. As for now, I can only wonder at the argument that we keep fairuse images until we find free ones. The fact that we did not have an image encouraged someone to "fix the problem" and provide a free one. There will likely be many more to come.
So, I just want to say thank you to the photographer, who understood the value in what we are doing, and to Greg Maxwell, for spending time with him and explaining the free license philosophy. And I also want to thank all the contributors who did NOT rush to post a fairuse image. Because of that, a magnificent image is now free.

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