[Wikimedia-l] [Commons-l] The British Library releases 1 million images

Andrew Gray shimgray at gmail.com
Mon Dec 16 08:36:02 UTC 2013

Remember that while US caselaw is clear on this point, it is less clear-cut
elsewhere. We at WM tend to take a clear line that 2D reproductions are
ineligible, but it's not a guaranteed absolute truth, particularly in the
UK! We can predict how a court might rule... but they haven't yet, and
claiming copyright is a legally defensible position in many cases.

("Legally defensible" is not always "correct", of course...)

As a result, an explicit declaration is a positive thing and definitely
should not be discouraged.

On 16 Dec 2013 04:57, "Robinson Tryon" <bishop.robinson at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Sun, Dec 15, 2013 at 8:36 PM, Gnangarra <gnangarra at gmail.com> wrote:
> > its more legal/copyright descriptive, that necessitates the wording than
> > just release them to the public which can still indicate they have
> > restrictions
> I guess I was just concerned that it was sending the wrong message re:
> the images, suggesting that the British Library had to put the images
> into the Public Domain because they (or some other entity) could still
> hold copyright to them.
> If it is unclear to the public that slavish reproductions of
> out-of-copyright 2D works are not themselves eligible for copyright,
> then perhaps we should work to improve that understanding. It's
> difficult for a member of the public to exercise his rights unless he
> knows to what he is entitled!
> --R
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