[Foundation-l] Clearing up Wikimedia's media licensing policies (some important points)

Ray Saintonge saintonge at telus.net
Fri Feb 9 03:57:34 UTC 2007

Marco Chiesa wrote:

>Gregory Maxwell wrote:
>>***Your claim that Italian copyright law does not permit fair dealing
>>is incorrect: ***
>>Under Italian law you are permitted 'abridgment, quotation or
>>reproduction of fragments or parts of a work for the purpose of
>>criticism or discussion, or for instructional purposes.'
>>(see Italian Copyright Act Article 70; Nimmer and Geller (1998-),
>>Italy, §8[2][a])
>IANAL, but I'm not sure this can be applied to works of art, photographs 
>and all the non-text things we're talking about. Last months SIAE 
>(Italian Society of Authors and Publishers) enforced copyright on an 
>amateurial art website which was showing contemporary paintings. The 
>website was describing and commenting these works, so the use of the 
>pictures was "to illustrate what it was talking about". Still, this is 
>copyright infringement under the Italian Law. Instructional purposes 
>means that a teacher can distribute N copies of a copyrighted media to 
>his/her students, but if you print a book well you have to pay the 
>copyright owner his/her fair royalty.
It's in the nature of artists' societies to act aggressively, even when 
their rights are uncertain.  Did the owners of the website even try to 
claim fair dealing?  We don't know what would happen if somebody with a 
reasonable case called their bluff.  Just like a poker game.

>Fair use is NOT a license. 
That's what we've been saying.

>It's a way to defend yourself when challenged 
>about copyright infringement. 
More than that, it's a positive defence.  You can apply it before you're 


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