[Foundation-l] Czech Wikipedia's EDP and WMF's licensing policy
wiki_tomos at inter7.jp
Wed Dec 19 16:38:09 UTC 2007
Hi, please be warned first that I am no legal expert. And since you are asking
the intent of the Wikimedia Foundation, I believe the best answer comes from
someone from the Foundation speaking in their official capacity.
That said, I have two-part answers. First, the board resolution is not
limited to the issue of fair use/fair dealing issues alone. In copyright
laws of many countries, there are other provisions limiting or restricting
the scope of copyrights. For example, I see an English translation of
the Copyright Law of Czech Republic. It has some such provisions (3 and 29-39,
are the ones I noticed.) Does Czech Wikipedia allow images of street arts
and architectural works? Under the U.S. law, it seems that images of
architectural works could be posted to a Wikipedia when the photo is
taken from a public space based on sec. 120. The U.S. law just does not
grant such right to the architect. But works of public art is a different
story, it seems. (sec. 113 covers it, and there is a case Leicester v Warner
Bros. on the distinction). Czech Wikipedia might want to allow images of
works of public art based on 1) U.S. law's fair use provision and 2) sec. 33 of
the Czech Copyright Act. In that case, EDP should specify what kind of
conditions must be met for a Wikipedian to post such an image.
An EDP of a wikimedia project is a policy on just how much non-free
(but legally okay) images and other non-text media should be
accepted on the wiki. We want only free-licensed contents, but EDP
defines an exception to that principle, as Klaus Graf pointed out in his post.
Second, if you ask copyright holder/author's permissions for use, and if
the images are free-licensed, I see little need for EDP. It is an explicitly
licensed use of the work, as opposed to use based on provisions on
limitations and restrictions of copyright defined by the law.
Hope it helps.
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