Talk:Terms of use/Creative Commons 4.0/Archives/2016-10

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Warning! Please do not post any new comments on this page. This is a discussion archive first created on 01 October 2016, although the comments contained were likely posted before and after this date. See current discussion or the archives index.

Other changes to the ToS being considered

  • User:JSutherland (WMF) , why do you say "Other than the changes below, Section 7 will not change."? What changes are being considered for other sections of the ToS? Where are they being discussed? I think some other changes are badly needed and should be considered. --Elvey (talk) 17:25, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
    Hi Elvey - The only section with changes proposed is section 7. I apologise for the poor wording there; I'll fix that now. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 20:48, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Cool. :This section was archived on a request by: Elvey (talk) 04:02, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Also, when we create 2 headings by category 'For' or 'Against' it compartimentalizes the discussion. But overall good process: nice ad to bring me here, information about the issue, possibility to read the verbatim, then everybody's free responses... those are all good things to keep. Also btw I'm for the change :) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk)
    Hi - this dicussion's format attracts quite a lot of general support/oppose comments, so while it'd be ideal to stick to discussion itself, it's necessary for ease of navigation and discussion to separate these out. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 20:48, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

I don't see any reason why it's not a good idea yet, but then again I've only read this page and haven't done much of my homework in this area. ^Have to agree with Meg a poll Yes/No/Abstain would be better, at end of time stick one up and let everyone vote.


I contribute to Wikipedia mostly for this reason: Its information is freely available to all, and can be reproduced by anyone. I am not clear about the details of the proposed changes. If the new revision improves upon this feature of openness, I'm all for it. If the proposed revision undermines openness, I'm against it. If it goes beyond a certain point and undermines the concept of a free market of ideas, I'll have to find another hobby and stop contributing to Wikipedia. Brachney (talk) 20:59, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I think the differences table linked to above explains very well the differences between license, including openness and others: [1] - you can make up you own mind if the new license is as free as you want.--Strainu (talk) 21:10, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Compréhension - Understanding

Hello all. Je ne suis pas sûr de bien comprendre l'intérêt de ce changement. Désolé.
I'm not sur to really well understand the interest of that change. Sorry. Gerardgiraud (talk) 21:51, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Will the new terms apply to existing articles?

Does changing the license affect the terms for existing content licensed under 3.0? For example, could the new provisions explicitly allowing URLs as valid attribution be used for articles already licensed under 3.0?

If not, are we going to have to track extra licensing information for every piece of content, and show a different license per article? --Yair rand (talk) 22:06, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

  • The first question is no, but the problem for me now is about the "how-to-mark-the-articles-in-a-way-that-is-neat-enough" question...--1233 | Questions?| Tools | He left the message at 01:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Late joiner here :( Just to ask has the ? of is the issue of sole rights and prop etc. been hit on yet . Upspeed me pls? This is a large topic to me as well, as a writer. Gary P. Wolfe 22:39, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Scope of License and Purpose of this discussion?

As I read through this proposal, I get two things I don't understand: You list impact to Wikinews and Wikidata. How does this affect Wikipedia / should I understand that Wikipedia content will thus be licensed under 4.0? ETA: Now I am seeing the banners on WP, so I assume it does affect Wikipedia - that should be clearly spelled out in the FAQ, though. (And, for example, I do not upload anything to Commons but all my work seems to get ported for inclusion there by others.... So if this has anything to do on Commons or Commons-only, then I'm not all that interested except for any potential differences in what I upload to WP. If this affects Wikipedia, why isn't there announcements on Wikipedia about this discussion - or did I miss something?) Second: I'd have questions about the impact of 4.0 "enabling more anonymity" provisions and how those might apply to WMF projects..... but honestly, if this is a, "Yep, it's going through and this is our last chance to give you buy-in, but we won't change anything at this late phase of adoption no matter what," then I think I'm just wasting my time here.... Not saying I am or I'm not, as there's nothing to indicate what this 'feedback' will do in terms of adoption. LaughingVulcan (talk) 23:35, 5 October 2016 (UTC) Edited by me: 00:50, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi LaughingVulcan, the most recent version of the terms of use was prepared after a thorough discussion in 2012, so we plan to listen to the feedback and discussion here and revise the proposal accordingly. I think Wikimedia's policy documents like the Terms of Use benefit greatly from close review. Thanks for taking the time to provide feedback.
On your first question, we can modify the question and answer section above the explain how this will affect Wikipedia. On your second question, the current Terms of Use explains attribution will be provided according to your username that appears in the revision history in an article. Removing this material is technically difficult for Wikipedia, so we will need to see if this is possible if the case comes up. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 01:49, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the answers. First question, I think there may be other Wikipedians dropping by who will wonder, so thanks for that. The feedback, thanks for replying to that point. The second question, I think what I was wondering was since the anonymizing customizations are one of the differences linked in a 4.0 change document I saw here, I was wondering if anything would be changing based on that new feature. I don't mind having my identity associated with what I contribute at all, but wondering if WMF has any plans to tell other mirrors and copiers "Yeah you can copy, don't involve the WMF or Wikipedia's name in it so it looks like we approved your copy." Again, thanks for the answers! LaughingVulcan (talk) 02:50, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

A more enforceable license

I share concerns from some of the earlier comments concerning mainly the lack of enforcement of existing licenses. Clearly time and effort has been expended regarding the "upgrade" of licensing rather than enforcement of existing licenses. However, some of the more egregious license violations I've encountered have appeared on non-English sites. With official translations under 4.0, I expect the license to be more enforceable internationally to potentially combat these violations. Also, I appreciate the clarification regarding the right to cure. In practice, many violations are unintentional, and I expect that some reusers will respond better to a request suggesting they cure a violation during the cure period rather than a notice that they must cure or legal action could ensue.

Utilizing the new license appears to be a good next step. If adoption is coupled with more enforcement (even if such enforcement is informal), I believe it's a step in the right direction.PolicyReformer (talk) 01:03, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@PolicyReformer: We agree that the more international licenses will help with enforcement, and I'm glad to hear that you and several others are interested in the issue. As I mentioned above, I'd encourage people to contact WMF Legal about these enforcement issues, especially if you find some bad ones. We can't fix all of them, but we can definitely help with some of the worse ones and we can sometimes direct you to helpful resources for how you can help with enforcement as a volunteer (because a lot of the time, just letting somebody know that there's a problem can lead it being fixed). -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 01:36, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

I don't undersand why we need this at all

Aren't Wikipedia and Wikimedia just a platform for all of this information from other places? I don't understand why we need any licencing at all if the information isn't originally from here and we have (almost) everything cited.

Hi there. Wikipedia is written using references from many places, but the text of the articles is original work by all the volunteers contributing worldwide. The licenses are there to help provide credit to all the awesome work that everyone is doing, to make it possible for other people to reuse that work to help spread knowledge around the world without needing to ask permission, and to promote the free culture values that underlie Wikipedia by ensuring that others who adapt and remix things from Wikipedia have to provide the new knowledge they're creating to the world too. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 01:26, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Creative Commons - By

I wonder why don't wikipedia just adopted CC-By, not CC-By-SA

We use CC BY-SA because it helps promote the values of free culture. If the license were just CC BY, people would be able to freely use content from the Wikimedia projects for any purpose, but if they made changes, they could put those changes under regular copyright and forbid others to use them. The ideal is to make the world's knowledge available for everyone, and part of the way we strive towards that is by using a license that makes sure contributions to that knowledge remain available for everyone. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 01:31, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Patronize the Creative Commons 1.0 version

CC 4.0 should be allowed to bring the creators to upload their works. That secures a big amount of works. But Wikipedia should always campaign for the Creative Commons 1.0 version to patronize the concept of (literal) open-source.--Bluemel1 (talk) 05:59, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Infographic request

I request that a very straightforward infographic be created explaining the key differences between this version of CC and the previous. I was alerted to a helpful licensing tutorial infographic during a discussion on Facebook where several editors (including myself) bemoaned the inscrutability of photo licensing requirements to the average person. Funcrunch (talk) 21:56, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I like the idea of providing an infographic, but I'll need to see if anyone at the Foundation is able to work on something like this. Over the long term, I do agree that it would be helpful to have more simple and plain explanations of our licensing terms. I think that Creative Commons provides a good overview of what's new in CC 4.0, although it isn't quite an infographic. This would be a good project to discuss as part of our copyright strategy. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 01:29, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
That infographic is awful. The problem is the information is false. It's clear and easy to understand. It falsely states, for example, that these logos were all improper uploads!--Elvey (talk) 00:10, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

La licence à utiliser devrait prohiber tout usage mercantile,

Personnellement, je pense que nos contributions devraient se faire sous une licence d'usage non commercial : en effet j'apprécierais assez peu qu'une agence dite de communication s'appropriât mon travail pour un usage commercial. Il en de même pour les livres non téléchargeables gratuitement. Je ne remets pas en cause le droit de courte citation mais il est inadmissible qu'un livre soit du copier coller d'un article de Wikipedia sans créditer l'auteur et que l'éditeur menace toute personne qui recopierait le livre en question (qui est une contrefaçon) de plusieurs années de prison. Il serait temps que la Wikimedia Foundation se réveille et au contraire exige qu'une contrefaçon de Wikipedia devienne libre d'accès et téléchargeable. Cela serait une excellente punition car l'éditeur voyou n'aurait plus que ses yeux pour pleurer. Malosse (talk) 01:29, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Bonjour, La licence libre est l'un des 5 principes fondateurs de wikipédia :édia:Principes_fondateurs cependant cela ne veut pas dire que la réutilisation est en full-open : une copie doit mentionner : d'après/copie de Wikipédia, sous licence xxxx, et encore mieux la liste des auteurs. Un plagiat d'élève pour un exposé, s'il ne mentionne pas la source est illégal, de même qu'un livre plagiant de Wikipédia le serait. En ce qui concerne votre proposition d'obliger une modification à être publiée sous la même licence, je ne suis pas sûr qu'elle soit légale partout.Tpe.g5.stan (talk) 07:09, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Reasons for staying neutral for this change of Terms of Service

There are a few problems that needs to be sorted out before considering a transition to the CC 4.0. First of all, there are few problems when you want to transit to CC 4.0:

  1. How can one knows the page uses 3.0 license or 4.0 license directly from revision?
  2. Will there be a phrase out of the 3.0 license (gradually transit to a 4.0 license before DD/MM/YY )?
  3. If yes for the question above, are there any time span? If not, why? Using two licenses will affect readers and different institutions using the WIkipedia as source, as it creates legal problems.
  4. When will the change be in effect if the terms of use is passed? Immediately or there will be a buffer period (such as the change will take effect on 1 Jan 2017)
  5. Who can vote for the change of the ToS?


--1233 | Questions?| Tools | He left the message at 01:57, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

I'd say the answer to #2 should be no. From a technical point of view, it is much simpler to just have a cutoff time: from then on, any changes are under v4. There will be a (long) transition period in which many articles will not see any edit, but my understanding is that reusers can still use the v3 text under the newer license, so it makes sense to say that the whole Wikimedia project that made the change is under CC v4.--Strainu (talk) 06:57, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


Is there any problem like it was in GFDL? Is there any serious problem in redistributing, blah blah? If not, this just seems unnecessary. — regards, Revi 01:59, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

My main problem is that we can't import CCBYSAv4 text into Wikipedia right now. As more and more websites move to v4, we'll have difficulties getting outside content.--Strainu (talk) 06:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


I'm sorry, but I do not agree nor do I really see the need to move to Creative Commons 4.0. A lot of us have gone through a lot of trouble researching and photographing places and events with the intention of sharing our knowledge. Therefore, I believe that the right thing to do is thst those who want to use the work in Wikipedia is to at least give credit and state from where said information was obtained. Marine 69-71 (talk) 02:35, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This is just for text. You can already post CC 4.0-licensed images on Commons and post them on Wikipedia. What's the actual problem? ViperSnake151 (talk) 15:35, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Commons media repository licenses

This plan towards CC4.0, if implemented how would it affect the media on commons? Are you proposing forcing a license update on all existing CC licensed media or will commons media files be able to retain their current license version? Offnfopt (talk) 02:45, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This is only about the text content. Commons has already allowed content to be uploaded under 4.0 licenses for a while now. ViperSnake151 (talk) 15:36, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


I think the main page should clearly link to Creative Commons License Versions (big bold text) because the very first thing readers will want to know is what is the difference. Instead, we get text explaining why the differences are better, but really it is best if people read the differences for themselves objectively before they read your rationale for the change. In fact, the rest of the FAQ that's on this page should really be on the main page, as all of those points are important.

Although this proposal affects "default license for text" many people on this talk page have expressed concerns about images. The last FAQ entry merely states you "can" use CC4 for images. What would be a more useful FAQ is "What about images and other non-text contributions". And your answer would be that this proposal only covers text. Also you should state that the default licence on Wikimedia Commons for new uploads via the Upload Wizard has been CC4 since XXXX-XX-XX (can't remember the date, but a while ago now) though Commons has always accepted and continues to accept wide range of licences and licence versions for non-text media. In fact, stating that Wikimedia Commons has been using CC4 as default (though not mandatory) licence for many months might be worth including in the main text.

Perhaps you need a FAQ entry on retaining the -SA aspect. Fundamentally, the project is stuck with -SA since it cannot drop it while reusing existing content under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence. That's aside from any desire to force reusers to keep the content free.

And btw, I support the change to CC4. -- Colin (talk) 07:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

And old ones? And GFDL? And logos?

Some communities, for some weird reason, not even have the cc-by-sa 3.0, for example n:pt, you will also bring them to 2016? Here we still have "and you irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 3.0 License and the GFDL", we will remove the GFDL? And as we already updating the license, why we do not release our logos under a free license?????? We are a free Movement, with a proprietary "flag", and this is a shame. Rodrigo Tetsuo Argenton m 09:29, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

The logos - notably the Wikipedia 'globe' are already freely-licensed, since 2014. Wittylama (talk) 10:38, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Will this step have any impact on other Mediawiki installations using Commons?

I created a Wiki, installed Mediawiki and chose cc-by-sa 3.0 to be compatible with Wikipedia. I also use Instant Commons. Do I have to change my Wiki licence now? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 2016-10-06T13:08:00

You will continue to be able to load images from Instant Commons. Wikimedia Commons currently has some images under CC 4.0 which can be displayed in articles that are released under CC 3.0. The amendment to the Terms of Use will affect text on Wikimedia sites. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 22:25, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

What is "Project"?

What is "Project", as used in TOU, Sec7a: "The only exception is if the Project edition..." and "facts you contribute to the projects may be..."? I think you mean "sister projects", like Wiktionary or Meta-Wiki, but you might mean WikiProjects. Or something else.

If the word is not defined previously in the TOU, you might add a definition or substitute "all Wiki projects" to the TOU text in section 7. Like "facts you contribute to all Wiki projects may be...". By the way, what is a "Project edition"? --RoyGoldsmith (talk) 13:26, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Project refers to a distinct top level URL. For example, German Wikipedia (de.wikipedia) is a different project than French Wikipedia (fr.wikipedia), which is different from Wiktionary. But everything on en.wikipedia is part of the same project, even if there are plenty of different subdivisions. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 18:40, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Waive moral rights, as well as personality and privacy?!

The page says "Version 4.0 asks an author to waive their moral rights, as well as personality and privacy, to the extent that is legally allowed". Does this hold true only for the given edit, or do I waive my rights against the whole project and will therefore be unable to e. g. sue against insults on "my" wiki page (assumed that this page would exist)? If this is the case I'm against the change and happy to live in an country which does not allow such paragraphs. Jev12 (talk) 15:13, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi Jev12, the terms of CC4.0 only require waiver of these rights "to the limited extent necessary to allow [Wikimedia] to exercise the Licensed Rights, but not otherwise". In other words, these rights would only be waived for your edits and other content you upload to be used on WP. They wouldn’t affect rights exercised generally (including in relation to other wikis and the WMF). TKrishnakumar (WMF) (talk) 18:22, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I'm concerned whether, with this baked into the license, it is even possible to upgrade the licence. EU-law is very strict concerning such rights, and since it was not specified in the original licence it might not be possible (even if the wording of CC-3.0 allows it). Do we really need a case before the EU-court for what is at best a hypothetical improvement (we can't even police the licence breaches that exist today). CFCF 💌 📧 20:39, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
It's still possible to upgrade. 4.0 doesn't actually stop the assertion of moral rights in those places such as some European countries where it's not possible to waive them. The moral rights waiver is there to provide as much freedom as possible for content that's designed to be changed, edited, and remixed without needing to consult the original author. In addition, the CC 4.0 license has what's called a severability provision in section 8 at the end of the legal language. What that says is that if one part ends up not working (like the moral rights waiver), the rest of the license still keeps on applying as much as possible. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 00:22, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Support (don't vote in this section)

Sensible move to clearly superior license, although as BethNaught mentioned there are some slight subtle changes - a slightly less dense version of the changes is available here. Wikipedia should be a universal encyclopedia freely available for everyone around the world as far as possible and I believe the changes made in relation to creating a international license help Wikipedians reach this goal. Domdomegg (talk) 21:09, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I agree --Sargoth (talk) 08:45, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Domdomegg - I agree, that page should be linked to from the FAQ or announcement page. But the place to vote support is here, not here, Sargoth. Changed section title so we don't have two with the same title. And fixed link. --Elvey (talk) 21:28, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Well why would I expect user guidance in a wiki? SMirC-mmm.svg thanks, Elvey --Sargoth (talk) 08:36, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
:-) --Elvey (talk) 23:14, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

(Back)compatibility of licenses

Maybe my thoughts are related to the previous section. I received a dataset together with some copyrighted material under the CC BY-SA 4.0 licenc, and I was very happy. Then I realized (if I am right), I cannot use neither in Wikipedia under CC BY-SA 3.0 (or in Wikidata under CC0), because the license is not back-compatible. If most of the Wikimedia projects move to 4.0, many third party sites cannot use the content under 3.0 license version. While Wikipedia will be able to use their 3.0 licensed content (I would be happy to see a confirmation for this). Samat (talk) 21:58, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Samat, yes, you're correct. Just like we could use v2 content from, say, Flickr, we will be able to use v3 content from now on.--Strainu (talk) 06:38, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi, I'm no legal pro, so I'm always a bit in the dark with reusing loops. The evolution around data-mining and data-bases do not help me in shedding some lights on the matter. There is a very wide range of licences and be only discussing v3 to v4 seems quite limited to me. I keep checking w:Comparison_of_free_and_open-source_software_licenses and w:Permissive_software_licence and yet I haven't this big meta-picture in mind yet. As I'm always balanced between virality and full liberty, so it's not always clear to me what option I consistently prefer.

Fig.A A license compatibility chart for combining or mixing two CC licensed works.

Couldn't we elaborate some frame (2D or cube, or hypercube) with planes such as this picture Fig.A. Some arrows could be added to complete directional compatibility ([from Licence-x to Licence-y]OK ; [from Licence-y to Licence-x]Not OK), or we could agree on a reading direction (lines toward columns), bringing a non-symmetric matrix. Thinking while striking the keyboard I think a table would be more appropriate for the time being (and the delay for the decision). Not-OK marks could be associated with 'footnotes'

Line VS Column Cc-zero.svg Cc-by-nc-nd icon.svg
Cc-zero.svg 0 OK
Cc-by-nc-nd icon.svg Not-OK (1) 0

With explanations linked:

(1) With <ref> One can produce content to be sold and modified from 0-licenced content... but the source must be open... + links toward permissive licenses (opposition between copyleft and copyleft) <- Do correct me cause I'm not even sure. What I'm sure of is there are, in wikipedias, passionate and expert persons quite up to the job (almost rand pinking, in fact from 'view history' and editor statistics.). Shaddim, Wickey-nl, Farmer21, Yug, Cantons-de-l'Est Does the proposal appeal to you or any friends ? (1) explanation dots may need to be -> (expl) linked to [[w:Confronting licences#CC confrontations#Cc-zero VS Cc-by-nc-nd]] for more complete documentation.

By the way a code for folding tables would be great (show - develop columns), cause it's gonna be a wide one. Folding CCs and GPLs and BSDs, or categories by rights and so on, would help reading in my opinion. No idea how to wikicode that however. (same pinking) Whatamidoing (WMF) any idea ?

In anyway, this would be the occasion to complete and improve some pages in the wikipedias.

Hope it might help the debate. --RP87 (talk) 10:01, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Tables such as the design in w:en:Template:Navbox with collapsible groups – on some wikis, for most users. However, collapsing content (including, but not limited to, tables) is an accessibility problem, because it hides things from some people (e.g., anyone using Command+F to find the collapsed content on the page). Also, it doesn't work if your web browser and/or the local wiki doesn't support it (almost certainly more than 10% of WMF wikis, and probably much more than 10% of them). So it's possible, but I don't necessarily recommend it. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 16:14, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This is an important point desiring a legal answer. We may find ourselves in the egly position to force others to change their licenses, which would not be nice. --grin 08:20, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi, I'm willing to join a license discussion regarding compatibility and compatibility chart representation. Regarding the chart with specialized column vs row interpretation, I thought about something like that myself. Separating colum-row into source and destination license makes sense. cheers Shaddim (talk)

Can we outline the drawbacks please?

I think We have enough information about the advantages of this upgrade. Can we point out some of the disadvantages on the other hand? We need those information from different perspectives and viewpoints related to law related, user experience and many more. Can someone provide some examples if we switch to the new license regarding how it will affect most of the users?

Agreed, that's fair. Suggest someone chooses two of the strongest drawbacks identified on this page and adds them, after the advantages bullet points at Terms_of_use/Creative_Commons_4.0, as "Concerns".--Elvey (talk) 03:57, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

FeralOink has a version compatibility question

I have two thoughts to share, the first is the less important. I like this part of the 4.0 license, which is explicitly different between version 3.0 and 4.0 (although I don't know if it is even relevant in the context of Wikipedia):

"Version 3.0 included a provision allowing a licensor to request that a licensee remove the attribution from an adaptation, if she did not want her name associated with it. Version 4.0 expands that provision to apply not only to adaptations but also to verbatim reproductions of a work. Licenses now account specifically for situations where licensors wish to disassociate themselves from uses of their works they object to, even if their work hasn’t been modified or published in a collection with other works."

This is the second thought, to which I attempted to refer as a"Version compatibility question" in the subject line of my comment.

All things equal, it would seem easier to just stick with Creative Commons 3.0. My only concern is that by NOT changing to CC 4.0, we won't have the most current version. Is it possible that the older versions (e.g. 3.0, 2.0) might not be valid anymore and thus we wouldn't be using any licensing at all? I don't think that that is how Creative Commons licensing works now, but based on analogy with, say, Microsoft Windows, and other licensed software products, older versions aren't supported, aren't upward compatible and so forth. Is there any basis for such a concern, if we choose to remain with CC 3.0 given that there is now a CC 4.0 available? --FeralOink (talk) 02:41, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

@FeralOink: A license is like a contract and doesn't go obsolete, so there would be no need to worry about that. The reason we want to make a change, though, is that we think that the advantages of going to 4.0 outweigh the bit of extra work that will be needed for a transition. 4.0 helps a lot with clarity and consistency among jurisdictions, and the international translations will make the license more accessible to people around the world. Even though there have been a few changes that have caused some worry in the comments here (like the discussions on moral rights and database rights), we think that on balance the improvements make it worth our while to do the upgrade. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 23:36, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Consultation misinformed and out of time

The Wikimedia Foundation is not playing fair in the consultation.

  • First. The statement of the consultation is not true.

“Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects have been available under a Creative Commons license since June 2009, when the Wikimedia community expressed very strong support for using version 3.0 of the license.”

Wikimedia community did not express a very strong support for using version 3.0 of the license. Community expressed support for using a Creative Commons license instead of the GFDL, as you can see here [2] .

In 2009, v.3 was the current CC license, that is the reason because that version was adopted, nothing special.

  • Second. WMF Must advice about changes in Creative Commons license more than in the changes of the Wikimedia Terms of Use.

If the consultation is about an upgrade in the license, should be more important to understand the change in the scope of the license than in the text of the WM Terms of Use.

  • Third. Version 4 of CC licenses was released in 2013. Why we are discussing the upgrade now?

Common sense dictates that is preferable to be covered under the latest version of the license than in a former version. That is not truth always but more of the times. I guess (and I hope) there is a discussion thread about the upgrade of the license in 2013 or 2014. But again, here is not an explanation or context about why 3 years later of the release of the CC BY-SA license version , the WMF team decides to start a discussion about the upgrade.

Why Wikimedia projects have not benefited by the CC v.4 since 2013? Someone was clueless, I guess.--SirWalter (talk) 07:44, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

@SirWalter:: I can address a couple of your points. While I wasn't at the Foundation in 2009, my understanding of the upgrade process is that BY-SA 3.0 was the only option available for the switch at the time, so the strong support of the community was for that license. My knowledge there is secondhand though, so I'm not the best source for it. For your second point, we tried to provide both if you take a look at the legal note linked from the top. That discusses the changes in 4.0. There are also a number of resources from Creative Commons that compare the two licenses such as What's New in 4.0. Third, the delay was in large part getting things in order to do an upgrade. One of the big advantages of 4.0 is the improved international accessibility, but much of that was not available until this year because it took time for the licenses to be translated to other languages. We're going ahead now because we think this is a good time to make the change and that with the versions of the license currently available and more to come soon, the whole Wikimedia movement see a lot of those international advantages with the upgrade. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 23:44, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

trademarks in Commons

Hi, I read the comparison between 3.0 and 4.0, according to CC website:

Trademark and patent explicitly not licensed
In the 4.0 licenses, trademark and patent rights are expressly mentioned as not among the rights licensed.
No CC license version licenses patent and trademark rights along with copyright. These rights are treated separately and are not covered by the   license. In 4.0, this was made explicit to avoid confusion. However, in all license versions, implied licenses may come into play where these rights  would interfere with exercise of the rights granted by the CC license.

if someone in Wikimedia commons make his work (photo or video) that contain his trademark or copyrighted logo as CC, or make his trademark or logo as CC, is this unacceptable in 4.0 ? could someone explain this point ? -- Ibrahim (talk) 10:20, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi Ibrahim.ID - this consultation and proposed changed in license is for text content only. Images and videos are not covered and will continue to be licensed under their varying licences. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 17:25, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
That said, yes, you can place your trademarked logo under a 4.0 CC license. What it would mean is that the image could be reproduced under the terms of the CC license if it was being used in ways that did not require permission under trademark law. (For example, using the logo as an artistic picture in a book of designs or as part of a collage, so long as it was clear that the company was not endorsing the usage or connected with the art.) For uses that did require permission under trademark law, such as placing the logo on a product for sale, that use would require a trademark license from the trademark holder even though the copyright of the image was licensed under a 4.0 CC license. Kat Walsh (spill your mind?) 20:02, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Warning! Please do not post any new comments on this page. This is a discussion archive first created on 01 October 2016, although the comments contained were likely posted before and after this date. See current discussion or the archives index.

Фред-Продавец звёзд

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Да что тут думать - переводите, и всё тут! Если некоторые будут упираться - вспомните про редизайн ВК: такой шквал недовольства был, потому что "привыкли", а потом поняли, что старьё не нужно, и успокоились. Привыкайте к хорошему, отвыкать не придётся. Фред-Продавец звёзд (talk) 20:17, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

  • хоть один минус новой лицензии приведёте - тогда я буду за неё.--Saramag (talk) 20:39, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
    • какие могут быть минусы у небольшого косметического обновления, слегка перефразировавшего пару слов? Была версия 3.0, стала версия 4.0, тут даже не требуется отвлекать ресурсы сообщества на подобный многокилобайтный флуд. Фред-Продавец звёзд (talk) 05:50, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

The link in the first paragraph, under the words "expressed very strong support", rather obviously goes to the wrong place. Revent (talk) 21:00, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I fixed it, I think. It went to Wikpedia by mistake, instead of Wikimedia, where there is an article. "Wikipedia:Licensing update" (no such article) → "Licensing update" --A876 (talk) 21:05, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks a lot! Sorry, that was my error. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 21:08, 5 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

escribanlo en español

Una traducción española es disponible aquí. --LMixter (WMF) (talk) 21:50, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
LMixter (WMF), no se dice "traducción española", se dice "traducción en español". --Zerabat (discusión) 15:06, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
@Zerabat: Muchas gracias, no hablo español bien. -LMixter (WMF) (talk) 21:47, 10 October 2016 (UTC)
LMixter (WMF), no se dice: "no hablo español bien", se dice: "no hablo bien español" 12:16, 12 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

The CCBYSA4.0 license will help us in our efforts to collaborate with the World Health Organization. So in that way it is a good thing. The 3.0 held people to national jurisdiction the 4.0 does not. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 22:42, 5 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Pas touche ! Ne touchez pas à mon WikiPedia !! Ne touchez pas la ruche !!! Are we going to be paid like the youtubers ???
Les nombreuses vérités sont déjà citées et donc déjà sous une protection quelconque : le droit de citer n'est pas questionable.
WikiPedia n'est pas une personne morale mais un lieu virtuel qui regroupe en un centre, comme une bibliothèque, la connaissance collective.
WikiPedia n'est pas une école, un culte, un organisme, un journal ou un média en soi car elle ne reflète aucune opinion : elle n'est pas suggestive.
- @Z3itG3izt Maât Lab
PS: Si vous faites ça, vous supprimez la moitié de mes 21000 tweets ...
C'est quoi ? Ça va prendre "un permis" pour inscrire de l'information ici ? Donc l'information va devenir plus rare ?
23:25, 5 October 2016

about licensing in general

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I find all the various licences annoying. More so than most other things about media.
I've always subscribed to the need of 4 licenses and not a single more.
Free: do whatever you want
free with attribution: do what you want with credit as due
paid for commerce:pay to get paid
and finally
pay period:you use/access/etc you pay.
All these various licences and the incompatibility they cause makes me have to recompile software almost daily to add in an incompatible this or that which was removed for licensing reasons, to add that feature back. Everything I've ever coded on my own has been given away under my made up free software as in free license. And I don't care what anyone does with my postings. I think the open movement and copy LEFT is becoming as much of a joke as the copy RIGHT industry. Apache, cc 2, 3, 4?, open, share alike; give me a break!!!! Lostinlodos (talk) 23:27, 5 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

CC4.0 DOESNT have to be obligatory, because The WikiMedia Proyects are "Free and accesible for everyone" and this "everyone" includes all copyright, copyleft, CC, GNU, PubDom(CC0), ect. Understood?

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia is doing a wonderful job. Any cynicism about Wikipedia is to be termed illegal thoughtless and biased. Governments initiating illegal activities are to be condemned worldwide. Superior power should have superior understanding of their action. Commons version is warmly welcomed. Personally I have benefited from Wikipedia immensely. Any punitive action against Wikipedia members is condemnable. Independent and people friendly ideas are always welcome. BRAVO WIKIPEDIA. LONG LIVE WIKIPEDIA. ALL MY SUPPORT..WHOLEHEARTEDLY. PLEASE KEEP GOING. HEARTY THANKS.



This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

"Share alike" is so much more clear for borrowers of content. But it is also clearer and more helpful for donors of content. When you donate content, you let go of it. The extent to which you let go is not always clear, which can be unpredictably problemmatic down the line. Sylviatoyindustries (talk) 00:23, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Does this newer 4.0 really effectively upgrade current foggy situation?

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I am not sure it is really well covering and coordinating the all the possible legal situations of creative commons materials in relation to broader public usage situations. Maybe if they managed few professional lawyers write their arguments here that how this new update is good and how it is bad and let the members clarify those different arguments and making their opinions would be more effective public debate that based on professional filtration. Orgio89 (talk) 01:53, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I support this as the admin of a wiki ( which already made the same transition a while back. Another benefit that I didn't see enumerated is that the CC BY-SA 4.0 license explicitly protects your work from application of "technological measures" which would constitute DRM, such that it should become forbidden to create a locked-down eBook version of Wikipedia, for example. As an opponent of DRM, that's something I support equally as much as the other positive aspects of the license upgrade. --QuasarTE (talk) 03:30, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This exists in the 3.0 licence as well. CFCF 💌 📧 20:57, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Strong support

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

As a long-time user and editor of Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects, I strongly support this proposal. As a writer, artist and photographer myself, I've licensed my own works as CC BY-SA in the past, and have upgraded those to the 4.0 version because of the international support. I also join the comment just above mine in celebrating the preventative measures this license takes against DRM of our collective work. Let's keep this information free. --QuixoticLife (talk) 04:16, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

The clause forbidding DRM exists in version 3.0 as well. CFCF 💌 📧 20:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

if you are improving the licence, why you even ask for comments or advice its fine do it. 04:32, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Because, as you can see here, not everyone agrees with it.


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia is, “A free encyclopedia that anyone can edit" - AKA - A fairly steady grouping consistant with that of Facebook, Twitter, etc … I stopped using this forum because people were not attributing licensed work- And info was inaccurate, sloppy, & very bias. Careful observers will note that much “Wiki" information is through outdated media & articles…and ironically - The Internet. I’m Shocked that this is even up for discussion quite honestly.-Even in professional photography cases, “Attribution Rights” are not a given. We have a new generation of teenagers & young adults who cannot even read cursive anymore, yet demand credit for RE-BLOGGING. ??? Do you really want to contribute to knowledge? - Or is this Facebook 2 - where everyone thinks they own information and history? Good Luck and I hope you all get over your egos and start doing this for the right reasons

What do you have against authors claiming credit for their own work? That's hardly fair. Qzekrom (talk) 06:05, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

No need to use the Creative Commons 4.0 licensing for Wikipedia!

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

United States Supreme Court opinion EXCLUDES Wikipedia from any and all licensing requirements under FAIR USE doctrine!

This discussion is merit less!

I rather see Wikipedia totally liquidated as there is to many non senses and predatory abuse of Wikipedia administrators vandalizing the work of others!

The cross references in many foreign languages are contrary, misleading and in many cases completely false, while highly politicized by the prevailing political regimes in a native languages especially from the EX Eastern European countries.

Suggestion for improved clarity

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I support the new terms of use because they improve international usability and because they are clearer. IMHO the suggested new text should be further improved: I suggest replacing "that are compatible with CC BY-SA" by "that are compatible with CC BY-SA 4.0" in c. Importing text. Adding "4.0" avoids a potential ambiguity. --Stefan Weil (talk) 09:45, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I strongly support this proposal. Some websites and wikis have already upgraded to BY-SA 4.0 and because we are still on an older version, we cannot import content from them. stranger195 (talkcontribsguestbook) 10:31, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

I support the proposal. The concern mentioned above has been discussed at wikipedia:Wikipedia talk:FAQ/Copyright#CC-BY 4.0 compatibility?. Summarizing that discussion, possible content sources for Wikipedia, including wikipedia:PLOS, have migrated to Creative Commons 4.0 and are not compatible, as per wikipedia:Wikipedia:FAQ/Copyright#table, if they utilize CC BY-SA 4.0. The proposed upgrade would solve that problem. RobbieIanMorrison (talk) 11:18, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

A somewhat neutral opinion

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

According to what I understand, 4.0 requires you to define what you've changed from the original file. But, I don't think it is a problem at all. --ഏത്തപഴം (talk) 11:10, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Something else: But, it has more language translations than 3.0. --ഏത്തപഴം (talk) 11:13, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Article squaters

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I don't like how various editors "squat" on an article and revert "good faith" additions by other editors because they don't like the fact of the information existing and therefore don't want it documented on Wikipedia - even if their policy claims for reverting aren't supported by actual Wikipedia content policies (e.g. notability). If the upgrade to CC 4.0 is going to reduce this "squaitting" or bullying behavior, I'm all for it. More information exposed enables other people with varying perspectives to clarify the information available.

There is no connection between our chosen license and any reverts not caused by copyright issues. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 04:27, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Format Update Suggestion

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

As a person who had used Wikipedia many times, over and over, I think that if Wikipedia is making this change, they should make some other changes in their formatting. This website has become old and frail, and it is still used, but if Wikipedia wants to stay 'alive' it needs to change its layout. Now what I'm talking about does sound drastic, and I sadly can not help it (for I am no developer or professional programmer) but this website needs something a little more modern. It has been scientifically proven that people who think something is pleasing to the eye, will be more likely to stay on that page. It doesn't have to start out drastic, unless it wants too, it can just take "baby steps" towards its new beginning. People that don't want the new layout can vote on it. All that I'm saying is that Wikipedia needs to step up its game into the future.

                                                                                                 - Anonymous


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I suggest that Wikipedia/Wikimedia should remain with 3.0. It's too early to go with 4.0. There is some vagueness in some of the terms, that needs to be addressed. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by ZAchaboi (talk)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

No no no no. Horrible error to limit PUBLIC DOMAIN material with any kind of license. Either public domain exists, or it does not. If it exists, leave it be and let people use it freely, as it was meant to be used. There is no benefit of a CC license except to confuse people or worse, discourage them from using public domain works. Nobody understands CC licenses anyway, and the most common one demands you not profit from your work in any way. So, if your aim is to thwart creativity (new art, especially) put a license on it. Absolutely horrid idea. 20:05, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

To be clear, we already use a CC 3.0 license. This proposal is to move that to 4.0, not to implement it in the first place. Samwalton9 (talk) 22:03, 6 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I think it is a good idea. Creative commons can help many people, but maybe confirm with the user that wrote it before making it creative commons.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I would conditionallysupport for upgrading the license, Following conditions should be met to ensure you don't violate privacy of user and organisation both, for the benefit of both. 1) You must allow [edit] options to only those users who are expertise in that particular field, the reason is Wikimedia is known for information and is equally known for fake information.This will make Wikimedia an authentic free research website. 2) Include different kinds of events, this will help for advertisement and will enhance people to take interest to your website. This step should be thought of since creative common license will give you more scope and future to your website using this step. 3) Make your website dynamic, else creative common license will give nothing to the website. What do I mean by dynamic?? See google, it has constant changing environment with changing needs of user and adaptable environment with improved technology, from last decade, wikimedia has not even updated its logo, how would the people accept. Have changes like improving website appearance and much more, What has it to do with creative common license? well the license is for covering every field, so you must have experts from each field in that proportion itself. 4) Without loss of generality, improvement will help and license is just an "Cherry on the cake".

I would strongly oppose Wikipedia if it does not even read this content. Bonjour en ce qui concerne l'adoption de cette licence,c'est bien parce que il n'est pas sans savoir aujourd'hui que tout le monde court vers l'utilisation des logiciels libre. Une idée très sérieuses pour permettre à chaque rédacteur d'article de disposer des licence gratuit au fins de fuir des licence couteux par cette certaine organisations.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

This proposal has no impact on educational topics but it gets kinda of vague when it comes to more political and social topics. Who decides what sources are valid and arn't. This to me seems like a way to censor one of the last free and open sources of information made for the people by the people. This in a way is a violation of my first amendment rights, if this goes trough I would not be surprised if you get sued for this except reason. This is dangerous territory you getting into here. I warm you that what this would allow will change the way internet works and it will not longer be a safe place to share and learn about new ideas only the ones approved by you.

Licensing Lunacy

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Internet is a FREE public media, and let's keep it free.

Where the ATTORNEYS or any LEGAL LANGUAGE RESTRICTIONS are imposed, that is the end of our perpetual freedom!

Wikipedia shall be also FREE as a public domain without ANY restriction and licensing.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:14, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

It will be a good idea, but for the people who made the content available, not wikipedia, since it's not the employee who create content

French contributor

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

I didn't understood the argument for change ; i complain that i didn't find a french translation of ccv4. I support the idea that free contributions shouldn't be licensed for free-commercialization. I consider that Gfdl gives a better respect for what users attempt to be considered: the "author-ship" of anyone over the plain community along time. Less CC licenses, more respect for editors ; please. --Youni Verciti (talk) 12:00, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Bonjour, Youni Verciti. La licence est disponible en français - Thatkitten (talk)
Even when the page is translated in French, French-speakers still complain, unbelievable. --Thibaut120094 (talk) 13:03, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
What's your problem with French people? They have every right to complain about licences not being available in their language. Thatkitten (talk) 07:08, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
This is still better than 3.0: there is no French-language translation—or any official translation at all—of the 3.0 licenses! There is a ported license for France in the French language, which is not exactly the same as the international license (it contains pieces that are specific to French law); a few other jurisdictions also have ported licenses that are available in the languages most widely spoken in those jurisidictions. But these are not the same as official translations of the license designed to work in any jurisdiction.
(I know the French translation of 4.0 is in progress, but it looks like it hasn't yet been completed. Making the translations of these licenses is very difficult, though—they have to make sure that the text makes sense for the language and legal context of all of the Francophone countries and that it corresponds as closely as possible to the original text in English, so that the legal meaning is not changed.) Kat Walsh (spill your mind?) 07:39, 7 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

If it remains under the 3.0 Creative Commons license it can be reused by projects using either the 3.0 or 4.0 or future versions of the license. But putting it under the 4.0 version of the license would make it so projects using version 3.0 of the license could not use it. So this makes Wikipedia content available to less projects and reduces the license compatibility and reusability of the content elsewhere. I am for a license that maximizes the reusability of the content and has downstream compatibility with the most licenses, in particular something that would be at the very least GNU GPL-compatible would be good because there is some source code on Wikipedia and it ought to be usable in open-source software. I suggest instead we should be using the CC0 Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication on Wikipedia, but if that is not something other people agree with, at the very least we ought to stick with the current license instead of switching to one that has even less downstream compatibility with other licenses so I oppose this suggestion. Anything available under a 3.0 Creative Commons license, according to the license terms, is already also available under 4.0 and later versions of the same license, so this move accomplishes absolutely nothing productive whatsoever and I oppose it completely and suggest other people do the same. For the same types of reasons, when it comes to software currently licensed under GNU GPL 2.0 or later, when people suggest switching to GNU GPL 3.0 or later I always oppose that too, it limits downstream license compatibility if you "upgrade" to the latest license version which means less people can reuse your work. Just stick with the current license or better yet switch to a less restrictive one that is either public domain or is closer to public domain. Switching from CC BY-SA to CC-BY and getting rid of the ShareAlike restrictions would also be good, and the earlier the version of CC-BY the better, if you can't agree to CC0 license 1.0 or later, I would suggest having everything licensed under CC-BY version 1.0 or later, and by 1.0 or later I mean people will be able to reuse the content under version 1.0, 2.0, 2.1, 2.5, 3.0, 4.0, etc. of the license, whichever version they choose, I am not suggesting we use some later version of the license than 1.0, 1.0 would be best. And yes there were 2.1 and 2.5 releases of the Creative Commons license suite but I suggest "downgrading" to version 1.0 for maximum compatibility, doing the exact opposite of this move, and also getting rid of the ShareAlike restrictions.

EDIT: For examples of projects that would be adversely affected by a move to Creative Commons 4.0 from 3.0, just look at any other wiki that uses Creative Commons 3.0 licenses and uses Wikipedia content. They would have to update their license to Creative Commons 4.0 too and some of them might not want to do that for some reason, but if Wikipedia moved to 4.0, anyone reusing it under the Creative Commons license rather than the GFDL would have to upgrade their Creative Commons license to 4.0 as well. Since there is a lot more content originally contributed to Wikipedia and later used on other wikis than content originally contributed to other wikis and then later used on Wikipedia, I am particularly thinking how this move would negatively impact all the other wikis on the Internet that reuse content on Wikipedia currently. As someone who is an admin on several of them I think it is best not to cause problems for other wikis, other wikis have enough trouble to deal with already with vandalism, hosting, etc., and then introducing this license version incompatibility problem to the rest of the wikis on the Internet besides Wikipedia, a large portion of which reuse Wikipedia content, is just creating more trouble than any good that it does. At least it causes trouble for other wikis besides Wikipedia and I think Wikipedia should be as generous as possible in sharing information with the rest of the wikis on the World Wide Web, and this move would be counterproductive for many existing wikis. --Yetisyny (talk) first posted 12:14, 6 October 2016 (UTC), last updated 20:51, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

public domain

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

all content should be completely free, reusable with no strings attached. creative commons is a private initiative which should be barred, public domain is the way to go!

In an ideal world, possibly yes. We're not even close, unfortunately. --grin 08:48, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Any change that shifts power from the individual to the state is part of the agenda of centralized global control.


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

I think using the CC BY-SA 4.0 as the new license of the Wikipedia is good.

As the Wikimedia had already using the CC BY-SA 4.0 for uploading media, Wikipedia should not still using the old version of CC BY-SA license.

Although [10] disagreed that any version of CC BY-SA license using in Wikipedia are legal in U.S.A., they are STILL LEGAL in other countries, excluding any evidence that can prove that the country/region disagreed that the CC BY-SA licenses using in Wikipedia are legal.

So I support the license change of Wikipedia.

Sanmosa (常安者)Sanmosa的留言板 ‧ 請多一些贊賞 — 維基百科不是「罵人中心」 • 請勿「葵芳邨芳齡8年」 13:08, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

JS Matthew Regarding a New Translation Language (Khmer Cambodian)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

I have noticed that although over the last few years we have expanded to several different language translations, one language that is now becoming used and is growing in the United States in particular, is the Language of Cambodia, or Khmer. I would be interested in networking both online and with some of my local peers to try to apply language translations to pages in the Khmer Cambodian Language. I am just not sure how to get started and also how the new licensing (CC 4.0) would be affected, if at all. Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated. Otherwise, I support the upgrade to the 4.0 version of Creative Commons License. JS Matthew

There's a Khmer language Wikipedia at - and you're just in time for Wikipedia Asian Month which is November, where contributors can receive a postcard from a number of Asian projects. Orderinchaos (talk) 02:10, 8 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

As far as I'm concerned. Under the C.C. It would be more up front with little more hindrances than before. With pages that have an inclined given Feel suffice to say with cited sources, instead of having some overhead re:revision there needs to be utmost transparency without the usage of opinions or underlying tones given. (I.E. Feminist cited pages which are widely in dispute, edited by feminists on wikipedia.) Concern of contribution where things are of public use but decided or ruled out in favor of another's submitted is a selection process whereas when compiling with a lack of bias, most everything is without a history or colored back round aside from contextual or past, present, future basis. In other words, it limits the potential in further beyond extents, though furthermore grounds in legal fluidity.

The Creative Commons 4.0

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

I oppose the move to Creative Commons 4.0

1. The licenses have already been written, signed for and accepted. 2. The licenses have already been spoken and accounted for. 3. The licenses are in use.

4. A Creative Commons 4.0 publication of media based on the above is unacceptable.


Memebership only linkage usage acceptance

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

Thank you for letting me know the common licensing of Wikipedia discussion. I like Wikipedia acitivites of all materials with supporting of highly sophisticated motivation of wikiphilic people. I would like to suggest the linking in or using wikipedia matrials should join the member of annual pay with the fair money reflected of the national average income. Memberships should be included 1)protecting fair usage without slandering someone or something and maintain observatory documents with reference and citation based materials. Thank you


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

Having just gone through hell trying to obtain the right - free of charge - to reproduce copyright images for a number of illustrations in my new book 'Vehicles of Asgard', I believe the rules vary too widely from country to country. There needs to be an international convention on "fair use" of limited content extracted from copyright works for legitimate publications such as mine. I therefore strongly support the Wikipedia initiative.

"Politically correct" vandals

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

Not in favour. I see no fix for the systematic vandalizing of entries like what is being done to Rupert Sheldrake's page. His page is rewritten with "correct" information based on ideological beliefs by the same group of vandals time and time again and WP does nothing to punish them. Until that situation is addressed, the rest is, frankly, moot, regardless of attached hoopla.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

I support the upgrade in the interest of veracity and ongoing dissemination of accurate information. Please use the mandate to edit out lies and propaganda. I would also appreciate it if you were to distance yourself from the various "wiki" alikes and particularly from "wiki leaks" which seeks to propagate propaganda and disinformation and supports the egregious Assange in his campaign of self promotion.


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 01:24, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

What is the worry? You wont get attribution? Big deal. Name your files right and people can always find the author with a Google image search.

Do great work, shoot iconic photos and your work wont be confused with anyone elses.

Just get rid of the mandatory commercial requirement...that opens up a lot of new material for donation. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Danielteolijr (talk)

Warning! Please do not post any new comments on this page. This is a discussion archive first created on 01 October 2016, although the comments contained were likely posted before and after this date. See current discussion or the archives index.

Proposal page is blatantly biased

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

The proposal page is clearly biased mentioning only "improved clarity" and "more international" and assumes passage by stating "Once the final change is made". It does not mention any details of the differences between versions 3 and 4 which are listed in detail here. I hope this information will be provided in the upcoming legal note but this should be more prominently displayed and not on a subpage. BethNaught (talk) 09:45, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

We'll post the legal note later today when the discussion opens, and it will include more details on the change along with links to the Creative Commons resources. Thanks, Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 16:11, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I agree, thanks for the extra information. No point in a discussion if not all the points are given. CaptainGummyBearz

I agree too. BethNaught, please edit the proposal to make it neutral; so far it sounds like spin from Thelikesof Facebook.--Bassilois (talk) 11:20, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

We posted more information on license changes in the legal note along the questions and answers above. If you have any other good resources on the 4.0 version of the license, please let me know and I'll gladly incorporate them. Thanks for joining the discussion. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Big reusers that cannot move?

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

In principle I support the move, as I consider v4 much clearer and with many important new "features", such as the database rights. However, it seems natural to ask if there are any big reusers that will not be able to move with us and will be hard hit by the change? If anyone can name such a case, it should clearly be investigated in depth, to see if we can help, including with legal device or delaying the move.--Strainu (talk) 21:13, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

We don't see any major re-users that would have trouble complying with the new version of the license, but this is an important point to consider. Reusers will benefit from the clear language in the license. Creative Commons is encouraging platforms to offer CC 4.0 as the default license, so we will likely see more adoption around the web. As for our responsibilities to reusers, we should ensure that we provide notice when content is available under the new license, and provide updated resources on the new license's terms. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 21:52, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
The only real issue here, probably, is other wiki-type websites; and the more sites migrate, the more motivation the other sites will have to do the same. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 12:46, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

agree that

I think it's should change it to make sure more people use wikis. The new one is easier to read. Suchichi02 (talk) 00:14, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

CC0 is the best

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

It does not matter what is the license if it is so good as CC0. It is very bad if WIKI images in the most cases cannot be used in a small commercial projects. Grand everything in WIKI to everybody for any purpose! CC0 must be set as the default rule for each new upload. (sory my bad english) PavelSI (talk) 22:19, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

@PavelSI: You can use works licensed under BY-SA 3.0 or BY-SA 4.0 in a commercial project. What you have to do, though, is to give people attribution under BY-SA, which isn't required under CC0 (there's also the bit about relicensing derivative works, which I discuss in reply to a few other people below). We think it's good to have that attribution requirement so that everyone who contributes to the Wikimedia projects receives acknowledgement for their awesome work. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 02:09, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
@Jrogers (WMF): the problem with every other licence is that you need to interpret its limitations to see if they apply to your case. for example attribution. what is proper attribution? there always will be borderline cases. who should i attribute to? what if i don't have author's name, and i have to research first? i should be vigilant not to cross any lines. with cc0, there are no lines to cross, and using the information is as easy as possible. therefore, cc0 is superior to all licences. that said, i don't think that wikipedia should enforce cc0, because it will exclude some contributors who insist on other licences. but setting as default or recommended is not a bad idea. Krisztián Pintér (talk) 09:05, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
People does not use WIKI data in commercial projects because it is too much work for maintenance all the references to the WIKI and attribution. It work only in theory, practically NOT. PavelSI (talk) 18:24, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I think it's a fair balance for people to be giving attribution for their commercial projects, but still be able to use things in most cases. While there can be borderline cases, one of the things that is helpful about CC4.0 is that is uses more clear language so that hopefully more people will understand the attribution requirement and get it right while still being able to use all this material. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 18:32, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Jrogers (WMF). So I don't support the proposed move toward CC0 licensing. (The "Where you own Sui Generis Database Rights covered by CC BY-SA 4.0, you waive these rights..." language). (See #Elvey.)--Elvey (talk) 23:59, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
The point of this change in license is that the new license defines what proper attribution means. ChristianKl (talk) 14:23, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
I strongly disagree with CC0, since it would enable commercial projects to do anything with your content, even brand or re-sell it under a different name. So the SA and the BY ensure that commercial projects do mention their sources and give something back to the community, at least. Correct me, if I'm wrong. -- LukeLR (talk) 22:10, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Existing articles cannot be relicensed under CC0 without asking every single contributor first. -- 2001:4DD0:FF00:1407:0:0:0:2 18:03, 8 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

PLEASE do not include Share-Alike in this upgrade. Doing so entirely guts most commercial uses. CC0 whenever possible, please, or at least CC4-BY, but just say NO to share-alike. A lot of small businesses are trying to survive on the niches that CC-BY and CC0 allow us. Share-Alike requires us to share, instead of sell, our labours.

I strongly oppose this. Free content should stay free and there should be no backdoor to monopolize it. Chaddy (talk) 00:14, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
In addition to the point from Chaddy, there are a couple reasons why the Share-Alike part is needed here. There's license compatibility. Going from the current BY-SA 3.0 to BY-SA 4.0 is compatible and therefore can be done just by upgrading the terms of use and editing articles, as the legal note explains. Upgrading to BY, on the other hand, would not be compatible with existing articles and would require some kind of really difficult to implement split where older contributions are still under 3.0 BY-SA and only new changes would be on BY. I think that's probably messy enough to just be unworkable. On top of that, the values of the Wikimedia movement have been supported by having BY-SA. It's still possible to use any content licensed under By-SA commercially, for example by drawing upon it in a larger work. The SA part means that if you take the CC licensed content and change it, your new adaption has to be freely licensed, which prevents people from copying part of a Wikipedia article, improving it, and then claiming that nobody is allowed to access or reuse their version of it. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 02:05, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I agree with the other replies. Strong support for including share-alike. It's a key part of the Wikimedia ecosystem and the community that has developed. --QuixoticLife (talk) 04:11, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I agree with the anonymous OP philosophically, but I agree with the other users that it would be impractical if impossible. Emir of Wikipedia (talk) 11:04, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Yes tough luck OP it really should stay share-alike imho... That's the whole idea of it in the first place, that's what makes Wikipedia work and spread the love. That's one of the reasons many contributed. Perhaps there are other data/knowledge bases for other uses you can tap from ? Perhaps you can change your product to include proper links and open its content and still do the buisiness of providing it ? By facing those obstacles we keep knowledge free and its spread free too. It's important is the reason.

I strongly disagree with the Share-Alike provisions. I believe its against the wikimedia spirit for the free sharing and dsitribution of information. Copyrighting under CC with a mandatory share alike actually IMPEDES the free flow of information. As a contributor on Wikipedia I want this info shareable freely, and that includes the ability for people to take this information and make use of it freely for commercial purposes or own purposes. By right all information on Wikipedia articles should be PUBLIC DOMAIN and not copyrighted at all. BaronVonchesto (talk) 10:07, 12 October 2016 (UTC)

Non-starter. It's totally impossible to switch to CC4-BY or CC0. To do so would be to be stealing the intellectual property of our editors. --Elvey (talk) 01:31, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

Oppose CC BY-SA on Wikinews

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

It should be updated to CC BY 4.0, not BY-SA. Because I hate re-using online news only according to the original license. --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 00:56, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Jrogers (WMF), are you (the WMF folks including you, not just you singular) trying to force Wikinews to replace their current cc-by license with the more restrictive cc-by-sa? If you're not, this is a simple but significant typo; if you are, this is a disingenuous move that deserves to be announced widely to the Wikinews community whose content will become less useful for many potential reusers. Nyttend (talk) 01:48, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
You are correct, Wikinews can upgrade to CC 4.0 and continue to use the CC BY license. I have updated the FAQ to reflect this point. Can you help clarify this point with the Wikinews community? I am curious to hear if there is interest in CC BY 4.0 on Wikinews. Best, Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 02:05, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Curious, who is reusing Wikinews content, and where? It's a positive thing if it's happening, but I'm just a little surprised. -- Zanimum (talk) 12:30, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Just saying yes to the proposal not to move to the -SA licence. --Okino (talk) 12:44, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

HirnSpuk – About sui generis stuff and commercial use

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

I would strongly recommend thinking about the example: "As an example, this means facts you contribute to the projects may be reused freely without attribution." Excuse me? Then, why all the fuss about the license anyways? Or am I misunderstanding something? What qualifies as a "fact": A word? A sentence? A paragraph? A page? An image? I for myself do not understand, what's the matter with this latin database stuff... I'm no lawyer and I'm not going to become one. This should get some clarification.

Second, above, some guys asked, why they can't use the stuff commercially, but as far as I understand, they should (otherwise the License would be nc?), right? HirnSpuk (talk) 00:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@HirnSpuk: Let me go in reverse order. Yes, both the current BY-SA 3.0 and the proposed By-SA 4.0 allow for commercial use. There's an attribution requirement though, and if somebody makes a remix, they have to freely license it under the same or an equivalent license (that's the SA part, and we have it because there has been consensus from early in the movement that it would be bad for people to take parts of Wikimedia projects, improve them, and then lock them up so people can't access them). As far as the database rights thing, it is a bit complicated, so I'll try to do my best to explain. If you're really interested, we have a wikilegal post about databases that goes into more detail. The short version is that under copyright law, facts can't be copyrighted. A "fact" for this purpose is some true statement about the world, like the date of a historical battle or the chemical composition of a material.But in some places that have these database rights, the limitations on reusing the database can go beyond just copyright. Facts are an example where database sometimes hit that copyright doesn't, and we wanted to explain that we have that waiver language to make sure that things like facts that aren't covered by copyright aren't limited by database rights either. That said, if you think the example sentence is more confusing than helpful, I'd be curious to know that, as we could change it or take it out. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 01:46, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@Jrogers (WMF): So they may sell it as long as they attribute the author and include the license, right? Concerning the database: Thanks for the link, I suppose the problem is with waiving the rights. If we interpret the ideals of wikimedia extremly strict (which is exactly what is done in german wikibooks, where the statement "we are only accepting verifiable knowledge" is always referred to as an absolute not discussable statement, that needs to be followed under all circumstances) every information within the database of wikimedia-projects could be considered a fact. So if we consider every information in the wikimedia-project-databases being a fact and if a contributor waives all the rights for facts, there is actually nothing left, that the license could be applicable to. In this regard, yes I think it's really confusing. But I think the problem is with the rights-waiving not the example itself. If it is really clear, that sui generis database rights are only and solely concerned with the database in total, or with compiling large portions of a specific database, than I'll agree it's fine (so nobody needs to attribute every contributor of wikimedia projects, if he/she is just doing statistics or something). But as far as I'm understanding it, with the new sentence "Where you own Sui Generis Database Rights covered by CC BY-SA 4.0, you waive these rights. As an example, this means facts you contribute to the projects may be reused freely without attribution." means: somebody makes a dump. Everything in the dump are facts → no license needed, no attribution needed, go for it and sell it. I would expect something like: where you own specific Sui Generis Database Rights you waive these rights in favor of the Wikimedia foundation. I don't know if I was able to clarify, because I'm not a native speaker. And I'm totally unsure if I even understand everything correctly. I just wanted to point out, that Wikimedia or whatever should be needed to be attributed and nobody can dump the database and say: well you just waived all your rights of the database and it's just mere facts, so you can't complain (as the example-sentence could be understood in my opinion). Regards Axel --HirnSpuk (talk) 02:52, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@HirnSpuk: I think maybe taking out or rewriting the facts sentence would be good. Most of what's on Wikipedia isn't "facts" in the copyright or database legal meaning of the word. Specific bits are facts, say the date of birth of Alexander Hamilton for example. But a paragraph about Hamilton's early life is creative because it contains a particular way of expressing many facts about Hamilton's life and there are many different ways those same facts could be laid out. One could not copy and sell that whole paragraph without proper attribution, but one could take a fact (the birthdate) and use that without attribution. In places without database rights, one could even take a lot of facts, say the birthdates of every major figure in the American revolution, and compile them from Wikipedia without needing to include a thousand different attribution links (extra edit: even in countries with database rights, you might be able to do this without attribution, depends on the database and whether you've taken a "substantial" portion of it, which is a word nobody knows the meaning of here). I think that's a good thing, myself. Copyright is meant to protect creativity, it stops someone from copying a whole Wikipedia article verbatim and pretending that they wrote it. But someone who puts together a list of dates, or a table of molecules for a school report shouldn't be forever obligated to include hundreds of different links and license text with it.

So that's what the database rights waiver is doing. It's not giving up huge chunks of Wikipedia at all. In the example you give, the purpose who copied the data dump would need to attribute Wikipedia properly. What the waiver is doing is giving up this small right in the overall organization or structure of a database that only exists in some places and not others. We think it makes sense to do that because it means that Wikipedia will be consistent worldwide (instead of people needing to check what country something came from for how they can use it), and it will keep consistency with how data has been used under 3.0, which does not mention database rights. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 03:37, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@HirnSpuk: When asked about database rights, I always mention census data. Now, census data is not under copyright in most countries, simply because it's not creative work, but a series of facts. However, European Union countries protect that data by database rights for 15 years from the date the database structure is "finished" (which is very slippery IMO, but whatever". Say that a single wikipedian collects all the historic census data from the beginning of censuses to 1995 for all countries in the world. He might say that this is a new database and that it is protected by this Sui Generis rights. What the license says is: you're giving away this right, so if company X only copies that data (and not any surrounding text, which might be protected by copyright), it can do so freely.

@Jrogers (WMF):: I don't think taking out the fact sentence would be good. The users need to know even of the most obscure corner cases of this license. More examples would probably help.--Strainu (talk) 06:52, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@Strainu:: I suppose a "good" lawyer could change your opinion about what is a "fact" ;-). Especially regarding the "threshold of originality".

@Jrogers (WMF):: I agree with Strainu. With a clarification, what a fact is in this regard (maybe even how it is normally stored), and a clarification, that database-entries containing creativity are not in focus, it would be fine. Regards Axel --HirnSpuk (talk) 09:54, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Change my mind? Not really likely. Force a court decision in the direction he wants, possible, unfortunately. :) It has happened before and will happen again.--Strainu (talk) 09:57, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

As for "facts": in OpenStreetMap (which is the "wikipedia of maps") a "fact" is something which can be known by people without intervention or help of other people, and when many people get to know the same fact that result is the same, or very similar knowledge. When they reach the same conclusion from the same fact suggests (and most often implies) that there was no subjective or creative process involved, since everyone have reached the same result. Examples are the color of a column, the name of a street [seen on a street name plate], the temperature on a given day, the amount of windows on a building. Apart from this very simplistic definition there are facts which are data involve human processing but not creativity, like the area of a country, the salinity of a water body or the amount of planetoids of a given size range in the solar system; gathering these facts require human efforts but not [subjective] creativity. These facts are not copyrightable. Sui generis db right does make it possible to lock down such non-copyrightable facts if they are in a special environment, collection ("database"), leaving in uncertainity how much of the database is protected, usually resulting debates and copyright-like claims about non-copyrightable data. (For example we had pretty heated arguments a decade ago with a legal entity publishing non-copyrightable law text in a database, and they argued that even one text body of a law violates their sui generis database right and we should immediate remove the text or face the untold consequences, lawyer signature follows.) --grin 08:37, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Effect on Wikidata

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

FAQ mentions this question, but just in a way, that Wikidata keeps CC0. Significant part of the content of Wikidata comes from Wikipedia, and the data transfer between Wikipedia and Wikidata is continuous and bidirectional. It can work until Wikipedia is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0, because it has no regulation about database rights (although I always felt concerns of this data transfer from CC BY-SA 3.0 to CC0, in some countries it is strongly questionable). But what happens after Wikipedia is under CC BY-SA 4.0 with explicit database rights? My understanding is, that extracting datasets from from Wikipedia to Wikidata won't be legal anymore. Is that right? Samat (talk) 07:04, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi @Samat: This issue is one of the main reasons we have the sentence about waiving database rights. Even without that waiver, the upgrade to 4.0 shouldn't significantly change the process of importing from Wikipedia to Wikidata. Database rights are a small right in the overall organization or structure of a database, and they exist in some countries but not others. (You can read more in the Wikilegal post on this if you're curious.) What the clause in the 4.0 license does is clarify that those database rights, if they exist, are included in the CC license terms. The waiver language we added makes sure that copying facts to Wikidata doesn’t have the CC 4.0 limitations anywhere, so that bits of data can freely be copied over and put under the Wikidata CC0 license. Note that the way that articles are written and information is presented on Wikipedia was protected by copyright before, and still will be under CC 4.0. It’s just that the kind of copying to Wikidata that focuses on facts (in the copyright meaning of the term, which Jrogers (WMF) discussed in a couple of replies), like dates of historical events or chemical compositions of material, still cannot be copyrighted, and can be imported into Wikidata. - LMixter (WMF) (talk) 23:23, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Effect on Wikivoyage

Wikivoyage is historically CC and has never supported GFDL - apparently the reasoning in the distant past was that GFDL required that the work include a copy of the license and Wikivoyage destinations were intended to be printed as individual hard-copy pages for one city and brought as carry-on baggage?

The Wikidata issue could also affect Wikivoyage - there are a few infobox-style templates like voy:template:quickbar with data fields that are being migrated from WV to Wikidata. In theory, voy:template:listing could also be a future migration target (a huge quantity of database-style records for individual venues).

What are the implications of the differences in license (WP is GFDL/CC-BY-SA, WV is CC only, WD is CC-0 public domain) - any pitfalls here? K7L (talk) 15:06, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

@K7L: There shouldn't be any impact on how Wikivoyage works in transitioning from 3.0 to 4.0. Wikidata being CC0 means info from there should be freely usable, and the waiver in the terms of use gets rid of any ambiguity about migrating things to Wikidata, although even without that waiver it's unlikely that copying a template would be enough to invoke database rights. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:22, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

Database rights at Wikiquote

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Insofar as Wikiquote may be considered a database (a compilation as described at Wikilegal/Database Rights), does the waiver of Sui Generis Database Rights covered by CC BY-SA 4.0 effectively waive all rights to the Licensed Material and render the License Conditions (BY, SA) inapplicable? ~ Ningauble (talk) 13:27, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

@Ningauble: No, the database waiver wouldn't render the license conditions inapplicable to Wikiquote, which isn't relying on database rights today either. Rather, copyright, just regular normal copyright, can exist in lists and compilations when there's some creativity in layout and organization. So somebody copying a whole page off Wikiquote would need to comply with the license conditions. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:01, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks Jrogers, I think I understand the intent. I realize that under CC 3.0 we have been relying on copyright alone, and that Sui Generis Database Rights are in a jurisdictional muddle. However, if database rights eventually become more widely and uniformly recognized we could be hamstrung by having already waived them.

I had wondered about this for a couple reasons.

  1. Wikiquote has itself run afoul of Sui Generis Database Rights, as I understand it, when the entire French Wikiquote was taken down in 2006 after it was claimed to have extracted a substantial part of another quote database.
  2. Some of the leading quotation sites appear to be routinely crawling the internet for quotations and extracting data wholesale without attribution, including data from Wikiquote, not to reproduce the pages per se but to create Adapted Material.
In that context, I wonder whether relying on copyright alone is sufficient to protect the right of attribution of the project's community of contributors. ~ Ningauble (talk) 12:52, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

7.D. non-text copyrights

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 23:02, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

I believe this section is about images. This section should include a sentence explaining that the images have their own copyrights which are visible when you click on the image. After you click on the image, click on "More Details", and the copyright instructions, the institution or individual who either owns the original image and/or who uploaded the image, and a description are available in a box below the image.

CC BY-SA 4.0 would increase compatibility with other licenses

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 23:02, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Just throwing this quick thought in here: Upgrading to CC BY-SA 4.0 would allow one-way compatibility with GNU General Public License, version 3 only (GPLv3-only) and Free Art License 1.3. CC BY-SA 3.0 is not compatible with any version of the GPL or FAL.[1] 06:32, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

  1. "Compatible Licenses". Creative Commons. Retrieved 2016-10-07. 
I don't think we should still accept GFDL-only images, the sources of such images can be taken by another licensed images, and by GFDL, when re-using, you must fork a LICENSE file within your images, which could fire your memory disks. -- 03:20, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

Publicity and Privacy rights - Example

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 23:02, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

The Creative Commons 4 license reads

Moral rights, such as the right of integrity, are not licensed under this Public License, nor are publicity, privacy, and/or other similar personality rights; however, to the extent possible, the Licensor waives and/or agrees not to assert any such rights held by the Licensor to the limited extent necessary to allow You to exercise the Licensed Rights, but not otherwise.

Moral, publicity or privacy rights are not granted by the license, but the contributor waives these rights to allow licensees to exercise the licensed rights (the right to reuse). If the right to reuse clashes with privacy rights, those privacy rights are waived.

Waiving these rights are a bad idea, particularly for images. In 2007, Virgin Mobile took a CC licensed work, an image of an Asian American minor - plastered it with derogatory text and used to it to advertise their service in Australia.[11] Virgin were sued for violation of privacy rights, the case was eventually dropped due to geography, and not because it was without merit. Lawrence Lessig wrote about the case, acknowledging that CC licenses did not deal with privacy rights, and for those concerned about these rights to consider using CC noncommercial licenses.[12]

Wikipedia is text. Other media on the project are separately licensed. I find it difficult to think of an example where Wikipedia text could violate the privacy, publicity or moral rights of the contributor. But I'm also not a fan of proliferating licenses that waive privacy and publicity rights, which is why I opposed the license migration above. - hahnchen (talk) 10:50, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia is text, but it is being used as bait to lure new contributors into uploading images onto Commons under terms which arbitrarily allow their automated harvest for virtually-unlimited commercial re-use for purposes which have absolutely nothing to do with making an encyclopaedia. The scheme works as follows: a user finds an article on some seemingly-innocuous topic like w:boy scouts, uploads a photo of his scout troop, then someone on some advertising-laden commercial site "re-uses" that free image to illustrate erotic spanking - on some other website which has nothing to do with Wikipedia. Maybe they have a boy scout fetish, who knows. (Wikia actually did do this to us once, the "boy scout controversy" ended with the wiki in question moving to another webhost, but waiving personality rights would leave us *wide open* if the issue were ever to come up again.)
For that matter, "reusable by anyone" would include the KKK, the mafia, whomever. It can also be abused to infer that the subject is endorsing a commercial product. Waiving personality rights can therefore be a very bad idea. K7L (talk) 16:26, 7 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

In the ultimate analysis, we are all one. You have done a great job in making knowledge free and future generations will thank you for doing this pioneering work. Knowledge leads to truth and truth sets us free. In such a world, there is little or no violence and people share rather than hoard. You must know that your work is leading to that unified world and with great success. More and more people all over the world are learning everyday what is wrong with the lives that we lead and are working towards a better world. If we restrict the flow of this learning, it can only slow down the real progress of mankind.

Therefore, I am of the opinion that there should be no restrictions whatsoever. In fact, people should be free to use any material available in any which way they want. Actually, the restriction should be on the people who do not want others to use their material: they should not be allowed to put restricted material anywhere in Wikipedia/Wikimedia. Acknowledgement of the source should be voluntary and should come as a result of gratitude to the source and not as a legal requirement. In ancient India, sages and philosophers did not attach any importance to their authorships since the thought was that it is nothing but pride and ego. Nevertheless, those who wrote sensible things became famous anyway and are acknowledged and quoted even today. If I quote Shakespeare, I am quoting him more for my association with a famous person than for Shakespeare's needs. So, the fear of original authors is not very well founded because if they have said or written anything meaningful, they will anyway get known and acknowledged.


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Actually, I agree because all with depth of knowledge can help widen a discussion on any issue, which I think is important. There is no one right answer to anything in life. Yes, there are irrefutable facts, but what remains is always room for growth of knowledge in articles or discussions of interest to people. As a teacher I am a casual user for notes only.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Its better to go through Creative Commons because there will be a better clarity of the information and easier access to information. Additionally, its better when we have the details of so many things at an international level, it helps in better co-relation Therefore, I say Yes to the Creative Commons 4.0 16:47, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

i think whatever that you want to do don't make things complex and keep things simple as they have been for us as a user. Thanks for providing information at times when we really need it. And in future whatever you want to do keep this in mind that your text is lifeline for students and teachers as well for whole world. so i think you guys are responsible enough to understand this and i hope that you will keep doing this noble job that you guys do for us. Once again i want to say Thank you for providing this much help.

Internet Wikimedia

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

As long as we've enjoyed the internet for all of these years, it's an astonishing refreshment to be able to participate in feedback to 'Wikimedia'. The litigious aspects of posts & dissemination of information is, at best, understandable hurtles to acquire pertinent data. We enthusiastically applaud all efforts to keep this data true & reliable. The new Creative Commons appears to be on course with validation & corroboration, hence this ability to express bottom line approval & encouragement. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mike Won Aus (talk) 22:01, 9 October 2016‎

Agree. Chicbyaccident (talk) 17:19, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

It's time to drop GFDL

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

As the GFDL is compatible to the cc by-sa branch, I propose to drop the legacy of dual licenses and abandon the GFDL licensing. I don't think it is useful to touch the license twice so the switch to cc 4 is the time to update both aspects. h-stt !? 11:26, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Wiki-"eyerything" is truly about the only mass platform left for the free posting & exchange of info which may be heavily scrutinized by one's peers...which is a good practice. Having been on i-net since we were entering strings of numbers to travel around between databases (ARCA) I have witnessed wiki & the commons doing a stellar job. New license (4.0) still does not have actual' teeth' with which to bite offenders however, we all know, only deep pockets & a slew of lawyers can accomplish that. Spend $$ on the system not the lawyers. I say to all...onward & upward...not to mention, good job to the hundreds of thousands of contributors, the back-end crews and new converts. Such people provide a huge 'gift' to both the online & real world. Without this platform to exchange (learn, share or provide) information the world's masses will eventually suffer from an overload of organized propaganda - which, on a daily basis, is generously filtered out to us all. For both the old & the new children on this platforms are about the only place they can clearly learn more, think more and move forward more. Kudos to all involved. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 12:15, 10 October 2016‎

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Imagine just how far the evolution of knowledge would be today had this, "my-new-idea-should-profit-me-as-I-expand-upon-the-ideas-of-those-who-went-before-me", mentality existed in the past? So, fundamentally human greed seeks to eventually own every aspect of all human knowledge. Whether this knowledge be written, spoken, infered in some manner, ect; and we should then only debate at what point can we no longer avoid stepping on someones elses copyright, and once we do what percentage of any royalties should go to whom among all who claim a piece of it? Instaed of asking the question that has been asked here, maybe you should ask, "At what point must, and do we stop being liable for the use of the human capacity of speech, learning, and symbology ?" Geez!... —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 18:01, 10 October 2016‎


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi, I'm a lifelong photographer and I am planning on contributing a ton of photos to wikipedia but not if I have no choice but to have my pictures only have one choice of usage. I need to be able to contribute without giving away everything. And I LOVE wikipedia!

Creative Nonsense 4.0 - Who cares?

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

My Mom always dare to say:

"There is nothing that stupid, that doggedness couldn't worsen it" ..

Since (ever) Wiki(whatever) is NOT independent at all, same like copyrighted user-content is NOT protected, this discussion is foolish, to say it in a nice way.

As long as content-creators (i mean those diligent ones with indeed independent thoughts) are subverted by "content-responsible persons", Wiki(whatever) is perverting itself to be absurd.

I just feel sorry for the creators i described above for their wasted power.

Its true, i use to consult Wiki(whatever) relatively often as it's easy accessible, but the content - especially if its political - is to validate of its truth by further investigation.

That content in the world wide web is widely restricted does not make it easier.

Freedom in this world needs people with courage, not paper-shuffler.

For sure i dont mean to attack Wiki(whatever), but just want to make clear, that nonsense will stay to be nonsense without matter of its version ;-)

Sorry for my bad english. Keep searching and running true. Best regards. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 21:55, 10 October 2016‎


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Yes!This is super idea!New CC?--Zemljaglupanija (talk) 06:46, 11 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

obviamente que é um celente tópico —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 13:29, 11 October 2016

BarryDennis Creative Commons Universal Use

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:40, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

My support of Creative Common Usage and Wikipedia in general is related to my desire that Wikipedia be incorporated into WikiUniversity as part of The Syllabi Project, which I proposed some time ago. In the Syllabi Project, credentialed and curated Wiki Editors would collaborate to create a syllabus for each and every subject necessary for a college degree program. WikiUniversity (or an institution established for this purpose) would offer a Degree Program based on Online education through the Syllabus established specifically for that purpose. This Online education project would be a non-profit organization, funded by donations from individuals, foundations, governments and business. The availability of accredited educational degrees through (The World Free University?) would serve multiple purposes, the most necessary being the recognition that worldwide education offers paths to worldwide problem solution, participation in self-government through education, and a recognition of the necessary and developing interdependence among all humans.BarryDennis (talk) 23:31, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

BSD-style license?

I propose the following:

Some rights reserved.
Redistribution and use in human- or machine-readable forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:
* Redistributions in human-readable form must retain the above copyleft notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer. * Redistributions in machine-readable form must reproduce the above copyleft notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution. * The documentation of all redistributions must contain the following acknowledgement:
This product includes content from a website hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation.
The views and conclusions contained on the websites are those of the contributors and should not be interpreted as representing official policies, either expressed or implied, of the Wikimedia Foundation.

KATMAKROFAN (talk) 03:18, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

There are 2 major issues with this. Firstly, the contributors do retain the righyt for attribution - that is that no one may reproduce the content without acknowledging its authors. Secondly, we can't legally migrate to a new license unless the conditions of the old license allow it. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 16:36, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

We have a question :

why you use to ignore Attribution + Noncommercial + No Derivatives option / advantage ? if it is possible try to make it possible for all three reasons. Yes, we also think that a licensed & authorized personnel should keep in charge to remove bad & porn advertisement. 12:32, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

RENZOVALLADOLID (SI o NO, simplemente)

Como en un referendum, deberian de simplificar la solicitud de ayuda: "SI" o "NO". Si Wikipedia me pide el "SI" ..... yo voto por el "SI". Asi de contundente debe de ser la pregunta, pues asi de contundente sera la respuesta. Para muchas personas, leer todos estos escritos es disponer de tiempo. Conclusion, lo que me pida votar Wikipedia se lo otorgare. Saludos cordiales. RENZOVALLADOLID (talk) 17:02, 9 October 2016 (UTC)


  • Here's why I !voted to tentatively oppose the ToS changes. I'm (still!) not convinced that the social behavior that free software licenses are meant to encourage is encouraged more effectively by requiring all wikipedia editors abandon their SGDR, (underlining indicates an edited comment) though I am OK with a move to CC BY-SA 4.0. CC BY-SA 4.0 fixes a problem in earlier licenses with respect to sui generis database rights (SGDR) that the proposed ToS changes UNfix! I read the justification at Luis Villa's blog (linked to from FAQ Why do the proposed amendment to the terms of use mention sui generis database rights?, above), and notice that there are no examples presented to back his claims. I don't buy it. The fact is, it's common for software subject to several different licenses to be combined into one product. macOS. iOS. Windows. Linux. Each of these OSes combine software subject to many different licenses into one product. The same is true for the most widely used software packages on these platforms, like M$ Office. Yet Luis says, "Most software is either under a very standard and well-understood open source license, or is produced by a single entity (or often even a single person!) that retains copyright and can adjust that license based on their needs." This just isn't true.
    What could convince me to change my !vote? A real or realistic example where straight CC-BY-SA-4.0 is a problem, but this weird special version wouldn't be, that I would actually want to support.
  • Also, if protecting Sui Generis Database Rights in free content is such a bad idea, why did Creative Commons decide to start doing it with v. 4.0?
  • Another (relatively minor) problem is that with this new clause, The Attribution section (b) and Re-use section (g) are now misleading. They would need a
iv. Not at all, when it comes to your Sui Generis Database Rights.
not to be misleading.
Again, to be clear, the new clause that concerns me is this:
Where you own Sui Generis Database Rights covered by CC BY-SA 4.0, you waive these rights. As an example, this means facts you contribute to the projects may be reused freely without attribution.
  • Also the proposed ToS changes are presented very poorly. First comes this unclear sentence, which doesn't even use the term diff! (a familiar term to all active editors):
A more detailed breakdown of these changes is available here.
It's followed by the entire ToS section, 95% of which is unchanged!
It would make much more sense to reverse this - include the entire new ToS section via a link, or collapsed, rather than cluttering the page with it, and include a diff showing the changes in-page.
--Elvey (talk) 23:42, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Hey, User:CFCF, The 3.0 license already allows distribution under the terms of 4.0 (per the "a later version of this License with the same License Elements as this License" language. So your stated reason for opposition doesn't make much sense.--Elvey (talk) 00:19, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

See point 4 below. CFCF 💌 📧 00:24, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Hi @Elvey: I tried to give an example in one of my earlier replies, and I'll use a similar one here. We're worried about a few things with the database rights. First, there's the consistency. Database rights only exist in some places and not in others. A person in the U.S. could copy a huge amount of data from Wikipedia (example, the birthdates of every single person born in the 20th century) and not run into any problems at all under either 3.0 or 4.0. On the other hand, the same thing done by a person in some countries in Europe might run into trouble under database rights. We think it makes sense to be able to share data freely from Wikipedia if it's not covered by normal copyrights, so having the database waiver makes sharing and reusing data work the same way no matter where the person using the data is located. A second problem is that it's unclear when database rights would apply. Two people in a European country with database rights might copy the same data set with one claiming they need to provide attribution under the 4.0 license and another claiming they don't and it would be really hard to say which one was right because people will disagree on what a "substantial" portion of the database is. We hope with the waiver to avoid that confusion entirely and let people know that if data isn't covered by copyright, they're free to reuse it. Third, citations for Wikipedia can get really crazy really quickly under database rights. The example I gave above was to imagine that someone writes a school report where they pull the birthdates of every major figure in the American revolution. If that were substantial enough to trigger database rights, that report might require hundreds of citations for that single table. Similar issue if, say, something tried to collect the chemical formulas for a large group of compounds that all have Wikipedia articles. They'd need pages and pages just dedicated to citation information in their report. I think that's not a good result. That sort of information, which is not covered by normal copyright law because it is all facts (in a copyright law sense of the word "facts") should be freely available for anyone without having to worry about attribution requirements that can quickly become very difficult to meet. Lastly, the waiver is important for Wikidata, which takes bits of information (like the birthdates in my example) and copies them from other projects to Wikidata which is under the CC0 public domain license. We think that's just fine under either 3.0 or 4.0, but the waiver helps eliminate any possible doubt and makes sure that Wikidata can keep operating the way it is now everywhere in the world. As a final note, the attribution clauses in the Terms of Use don't conflict with the waiver, the attribution just doesn't apply to something that isn't covered by copyright law. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 00:42, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for replying. (Your point about consistency is valid, but doesn't change my view.) Your examples aren't "A real or realistic example where straight CC-BY-SA-4.0 is a problem, but this weird special version wouldn't be, that I would actually want to support." We allow attribution by URL reference already - I can use an image from commons and linking to commons is adequate for meeting the -BY clause. I can copy an entire article and just link to the article history- which often includes hundreds of contributors. Right? It's certainly common practice. (If not, please let me know - I can make a ton of money suing Facebook for publishing articles I've contributed to and doing that. :-) I promise to share the wealth. ) Besides which, in your school report example - straight CC-BY-SA-4.0 wouldn't make pulling analyzing and publishing an analysis of the data forbidden. I can't think of why the raw data would belong in the report either. Or why, even if it did, attribution by URL reference wouldn't work.
Also, if protecting Sui Generis Database Rights in free content is such a bad idea, why did Creative Commons decide to start doing it with v. 4.0?
Lastly, I can find no text in the section to back your claim that "the attribution just doesn't apply to something that isn't covered by copyright law"; (b) and (g) aren't subsections of (a). But it's not worth arguing over.
I'll stop replying for a while; let's see what others have to say.--Elvey (talk) 02:10, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
@Elvey: Speaking to your point about database rights: CC decided to start addressing database rights with 4.0 because between the drafting of 3.0 and 4.0 it became clearer that the existence of these rights and how to handle them was creating confusion—no one knew whether they should be assumed to be licensed or not (there were some jurisdiction ports that addressed database rights, but the existence of these ports in addition to the international license created its own confusion). We debated for some time whether or not to make the license terms apply to database rights as well or whether it made sense at all, and for a long time we were thinking that they should not. CC could not simply make database rights stop existing by failing to acknowledge them: the choice was only whether to say they were included within the scope of what was licensed or to ignore them and let the same uncertainty continue. We decided to clarify that the database right was included within the scope of the license (to the extent that these rights exist at all for any given materials), and should be licensed no more restrictively than the copyright, so that database rights did not prevent a use that would be permitted by copyright. My personal opinion is that Wikimedia is making the right decision by specifying that they should be waived--it is not clear in these case even who the database rights would belong to, if anyone, for massively collaborative data sets (we asked several EU lawyers and got answers that boiled down to "no one can be sure"), and for free content it only adds an additional layer of confusion and difficulty in reuse without providing much benefit (especially given the multitude of situations and contexts where data might be used, and what even counts as a data set subject to these rights anyway). The CC wiki has a section on 4.0's treatment of database rights.
(I think many of us at CC held the opinion that the database rights as separate from copyright were a terrible idea, but that since they existed we had to do something to acknowledge them.)Kat Walsh (spill your mind?) 03:14, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
And replying to my own post: specifically, I don't think copyleft for data makes any sense. (Even separate from the idea that I don't think protection under any IP regime for uncopyrightable data makes much sense.) Putting it in the license that way was a tradeoff: introducing an additional layer of complexity by having two layers of licensing with two different sets of terms, or leaving both layers with the same terms with the result that some of it could end up with uncertain results. I'm not convinced that the choice to leave both layers the same was the right decision, but one mitigating factor was the knowledge that individual entities could choose to waive or otherwise address database rights in the cases where they might apply. It is dubious whether anyone has any database rights to speak of in the Wikimedia projects (the WMF is in the US, which does not have database rights, most contributors outside the EU do not have them, and to the extent individual contributors are in jurisdictions which have them, their contributions are only part of a much larger set). Stating explicitly that the rights are waived probably has little to no practical effect, but it reduces uncertainty for reusers, who know that they do not need to account for them, particularly when making use of uncopyrightable material as data in ways that does not make full compliance with the terms of the copyright license reasonable in their context. (I do think that for reasons of courtesy, good practice, reproducibility, academic integrity, etc.,etc., that data users should acknowledge the sources of their data, but this is not the same thing as insisting that the specific attribution conditions of a copyright license be legally mandated.) Kat Walsh (spill your mind?) 20:18, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for this additional reply.
I followed breadcrumbs to find a hint: at it's noted:
"The treatment of sui generis database rights in the 3.0 licenses continues to be a show-stopper for many, including governments in Europe. This fosters an environment in which custom licenses proliferate"
The reasoning there is entirely different from the reasoning you gave.
(Also, for others reading this: Kat Walsh worked for CC. Knowing that makes the discussion easier to understand.)--Elvey (talk) 01:15, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
Just to reply to your original post, Elvey - I was the one who drafted the text you point out at the end of your post:
Also the proposed ToS changes are presented very poorly. First comes this unclear sentence, which doesn't even use the term diff! (a familiar term to all active editors):
A more detailed breakdown of these changes is available here.
It's followed by the entire ToS section, 95% of which is unchanged!
It would make much more sense to reverse this - include the entire new ToS section via a link, or collapsed, rather than cluttering the page with it, and include a diff showing the changes in-page.
The word "diff" was deliberately not used here, because while it is a commonly understood term for active editors, it is likely to be virtually unknown to a lot of readers, who would also be affected by this change. We include the full section 7 beneath this sentence for a couple of reasons:
  1. It is much easier to translate than the "diff" view, as it doesn't need to make use of templates or styling as we used there; and
  2. It enables us to, should this change go ahead, import these translations much more easily into the Terms of Use itself.
I hope this makes sense. Thanks for your thoughts! Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 20:56, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
It does, Joe. I figured that was the thinking behind non-use of the word 'diff'. The large number of unsigned, mis-placed, and nonsensical comments makes clear that keeping things as simple as possible is important. But making it easy for people to get informed so that those that can provide useful, valuable feedback are likely to do so is extremely important. That is (or should be) the main point of the endeavor. Not window dressing. So I still think the word 'diff' should be used. I was looking for the diff and couldn't find it because the word diff hadn't been used. I almost didn't see it in the first place. So I understand why you didn't, and still think we should add the word 'diff', and collapse (using {{cot}}?) the text, which shouldn't interfere with translation. Do you object to both of those? What would be better than, say:
A more detailed breakdown of these changes is available here in a diff showing the exact changes.
? --Elvey (talk) 22:56, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
No reply for 3 days. Making it so. --Elvey (talk) 17:53, 10 October 2016 (UTC)

@Elvey: I don't understand you: we are talking about the "CC By-Sa 4.0 International and not only "CC By 4.0 International" withou copyleft. -- 14:48, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
I misused the word copyleft. Let me rephrase: I'm not OK with abandoning attribution and share-alike requirements for data. In other words, I'm (still!) not convinced that the social behavior that free software licenses are meant to encourage is encouraged more effectively by requiring all wikipedia editors abandon their SGDR. (and I moved your comment here to the to the discussion section)--Elvey (talk) 23:14, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

Sui generis database rights make the interaction between Wikidata and Wikipedia more complicated. ChristianKl (talk) 13:47, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
So you say. Again, I invite you to explain exactly why - why straight CC-BY-SA-4.0 is a problem, but this weird special version wouldn't be, with a specific, real example. Specific enough that folks would be able to understand it well enough to actually want to support. --Elvey (talk) 16:37, 5 November 2016 (UTC)

Waiving moral rights means waiving right of attribution

I have a number of issues with the proposed change, and I hope they are not too far fetched to merit an answer:

  1. Seeing as attribution is a moral right — does that not restrict the attribution of CC-BY-4.0 licensed content to rely solely on contract law and not copyright law for its implementation? And seeing as many jurisdictions deem breach of contract as punishable primarily as weighed against loss of earnings — does that not essentially void any action against a party which violates CC-BY-4.0 by improper attribution?
  2. Licence agreements in the form EULA:s have previously been deemed unenforceable in EU court of justice cases, begging the question whether it is possible to include a clause waiving moral rights if they legally can not be waived? If a German citizen is able to waive his rights in the United States (or to the extent anyone in the US can consider such rights waived) — could that not potentially void the entire contract in Germany?
  3. By waiving moral rights and relying entirely on a licence agreement do we not end up in a situation where there is potentially a loss of enforceable licence entirely if any part of it is deemed void?
  4. Cannot the situation you are trying to avoid: creators asking for their content to be removed arise on the basis that they object to the transfer from 3.0 to 4.0? Is not waiving any previous moral rights in fact in violation of those rights?
  5. Assuming any of the above issues hold sway — what purpose does waiving rights in certain jurisdictions serve? Does this not simply add a level of complexity when assessing whether a piece of content can be used that does nothing to help editors, readers, or others who choose to use the content? CFCF 💌 📧 00:16, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
@CFCF: Let me see what I can do for these questions.
  1. The moral rights waiver doesn't affect what you can do if somebody breaches the license. If the license is breached (and the person doesn't take advantage of the new 30 day window to fix it), then the whole license is voided, so you could assert your moral rights along with any other claim you wanted.
  2. Couple things on this one. First, it's pretty likely that the CC licenses are enforceable based on how they're being used on the Wikimedia projects. They're not just shown as a click through once, but rather appear every time someone makes an edit and at the bottom of every page. There's also a human readable version that helps people understand what they need to do. So it's a good chance the license under either 3.0 or 4.0 works just fine and the new moral rights section should not change that. Second, the license has what's called a sever ability clause at the end, which I just mentioned in one of my other replies as well. What a sever ability clause does is it says that if one part of the license doesn't work correctly, the rest of the license still works and applies as much as possible. So in this case, even if the moral rights clause caused problems, the rest of the license would still apply normally the same way as 3.0 does now.
  3. Same answer as 2. We think it works, and even if some part doesn't, that can be ignored while the rest of the license still works due to the sever ability clause.
  4. I don't think there's a moral rights violation of any kind by asking to upgrade the licenses, so it wouldn't be possible to make that kind of request. I'm also hopeful that having this consultation will help make sure that we have consensus about the change before we do it.
  5. It might be impossible to totally avoid the complexity, unfortunately. Moral rights are highly variable by jurisdiction and users in different places may be allowed to do different things. The ideal of the waiver is actually to create international consistency by making it so that works can be shared and remixed freely with as few jurisdiction-specific limitations as possible. I'm not sure it quite manages to achieve that ideal (some places make it impossible to waive moral rights no matter what), but it at least gets closer than it would be without the waiver, which is why it was added. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 00:55, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Jrogers with respect to points 1 thru 4. Not sure about 5.
@CFCF:I'm confused why we're not understanding each other WRT point #4, which you've directed me to. Let me try to explain differently / as questions to find where / why we're not in agreement. 1)CFCF, did you read the part of the license containing the text I quoted? 2)Do you understand that 4.0 has already been rolled out? 3)That it already exists in its final form? 4)That all content licensed under 3.0 is already available under 4.0? Faith accomplice, unless something is ruled unenforceable, which I agree with User:Jrogers, is very unlikely. 5)That the ToS change we're !voting on would only change what NEW contributions are licensed under? --Elvey (talk) 02:29, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

@Elvey: — That isn't entirely accurate. Jrogers (WMF) I'm grateful for the above response, and quite assured that the change is possible in most cases — but I am still under the impression that it may cause unforeseen issues. They're unlikely to arise on Wikipedia (though not impossible), but changing precedent here may cause others to apply the change to Commons as well. It would be good to have a discussion before this happens since there are some clear examples of images where personality rights issues exist — forcibly waiving these rights in a licence upgrade may not be possible, even if the text clearly allows it. Upgrading or changing licences can make them no longer enforceable (thankfully, only the new parts if I understand your comment correctly), if it can be argued that the waiving of certain rights was never implicit when signing the original agreement. My best example is from the discussion here: en:wiki:Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Medicine/Archive_70#Patient_with_Marfans — I think we would have a hard time waiving personality rights on this image, and it is quite important to note that these rights may never have been the authors to waive anyhow (but if they were, could they still be waived?).
Also please see Grants_talk:PEG/Wikimedia_New_York_City/Development_of_a_model_release_process_for_photos_and_video. So my concern is once again, does this change not risk adding complexity while not leading to any benefit for the end-user: the editor? Best, CFCF 💌 📧 07:36, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

@CFCF: Commons is actually one of the easier ones to do because it's flexible in how uploads are handled. Commons actually defaults to 4.0 already. It's important to understand that the 4.0 license isn't suddenly removing all rights though. Rights like the personality rights of a photograph subject won't change between 3.0 and 4.0. Old photos can also stay under 3.0 unless the author chooses to change them, and unlike text, it's not a problem to keep them that way because each photo in Commons can have its own license with no problems. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 23:31, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Thank you Jrogers (WMF), that answers most of my questions. I will likely change my oppose vote to support — with the cautionary note that it should not be applied indiscriminately. It won't close the loop-hole where users try to withdraw donated materials, but as at it won't aggravate the issue either, any other benefits outweigh those risks. CFCF 💌 📧 16:41, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
I'm astonished. CFCF, Jrogers (WMF) ("Old photos can also stay under 3.0"): You both dispute that the 3.0 license already allows distribution under the terms of 4.0 despite the "a later version of this License with the same License Elements as this License" language in the 3.0 license? SRSLY? --Elvey (talk) 01:22, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
Following your argument Elvey there is no reason to have version-numbers at all because we could always default to the newest version. However, things aren't that simple, and as I've mentioned: if waiving such rights wasn't implicit in the initial licence the clause can be declared void in court. Creative Commons is very well aware of these types of issues, and this is one of the reasons why older versions aren't simply deprecated. You can argue that the rest of the 4.0 license applies, but tagging such content as 4.0 risks confusing editors who risk using the content in a way that makes them liable to violation of such moral rights. CFCF 💌 📧 16:41, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
CFCF - There's lots of content under GPLv2 only; people are free to release content under a license without or "later version" language like that. Version numbers serve a purpose. I concede your bolded claim is possible, but farfetched. We agree that we mustn't tag 3.0 content with 4.0 licenses; you are mistaken if you believe I think or implied otherwise or that this proposal would do or allow that.--Elvey (talk) 17:49, 10 October 2016 (UTC)


I do not view the "opportunity to correct license violations" as an advantage. People already abuse, misunderstand and ignore our license quite enough already. I have great distaste for automatically giving them their rights back even if they do fix their use. Likewise the "updated attribution" should be described as "loosened attribution".

All that aside, as long as the WMF does not support the community with the resources to chase license violators, who cares? Why not give away more of our rights as contributors, since nobody respects them anyway? BethNaught (talk) 20:36, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

@BethNaught: The opportunity to correct the licenses is something that should make it easier to correct problems if somebody misunderstands or ignores the licenses. If a reuser can correct without getting in trouble, there's more incentive for a person who has made a mistake to fix that mistake. In our experience, most people do want to comply with the licenses, and the challenge has been that people get confused or make mistakes, rather than intentionally abusing them. I would also encourage you to report instances of someone improperly reusing Wikimedia content to the legal team. While we, unfortunately, don't have the resources to provide support in every case, there are some cases we receive (especially in combination with trademark abuse) that we're able to fix. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 21:15, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

A reuser who fails to comply with the license is already in trouble, even under v4, where legal remedies still appear to be allowed for the violation period. While I recognise that you may be able to help in some cases, my "who cares" feelings stem more from my experiences at Commons where I uploaded a few dozen images to help illustrate Wikipedia. One of my images was illegally reused here and here without any attribution or indication of license whatsoever. Another example (of someone else's work) is ArsTechnica. Their treatment of CC is inconsistent but doesn't always link, sometimes it attributes images to "Creative Commons" and not the author. Even in this comparatively good example, they use a BY-NC-SA image from Flickr (despite being a commercial outfit), without any on-page mention of the license, where there is enough space on the page for the reasonability clause not to kick in. For big automatic reusers of WP, yes, maybe they care, but for Commons images, it seems that if you want to contribute there and have your rights respected, you have to be open about your real-world identity and be prepared to take legal action. I know WMF legal doesn't have the resources or standing to support uploaders, but it's a sorry state. I guess you know this already, but I've typed this now. BethNaught (talk) 22:00, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

The proposal covers text only. Wikimedia Commons has used CC4 as default licence for the Upload Wizard for some time already. However, users have always been and always will be able to choose from a variety of free licences and licence versions when they upload non-text media. You can carry on using CC3.0 for images if you prefer. For text that has been collaboratively edited, like Wikipedia, I'm not sure there are effective mechanisms for those author(s) to sue copyright violators -- neither WMF nor CC own the text so I don't think they can take a case to court (IANAL). The 30 day forgiveness period seems entirely practical for genuine mistakes that are quickly fixed. Surely WMF should be spending its time encouraging folk to property attribute content rather than participating in court cases for petty sum of money. How much is a paragraph of text worth suing for? -- Colin (talk) 10:37, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

If you share it with the public, it will be misused regardless of license. Intellectual property is simply a tough concept for people to grasp. I don't blame them. Your BY-NC-SA flickr example is makes this point. However, as they say laws (=licenses) aren't for the law breakers. Free licenses only help those of us that respect them. If you don't want the rest to use your work, don't share it period. 2601:243:C203:2220:2DD2:2602:9E95:1567 09:04, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

Looks like have credited you properly now, on their site, at least, BethNaught, and google plus has a report copyvio function here you can use. Have you used it?--Elvey (talk) 19:18, 5 November 2016 (UTC) [replying to prematurely archived discussion. Restore to main page if that bothers you. Don't simply revert.]

CC 4.0 Denied

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:30, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

To be honest, all this talk about the CC 4 is pointless, I see no use in the new copyright license except for the more widespread contributions Wikipedia will make and other miniature stuff about copyright, more languages and whatnot. There really are no major changes and I really doubt it would make much of a difference. However it doesn't sit well with me. Wikipedia is a website for learning, not copying and distributing information, that is what news sites does, perhaps educational institutes. There is no use of this license when Wikipedia is already free. There is no such thing as "more free" that it already is. Besides, what of all the hard work everyone has done to contribute, all these information for countless years? It's not really the best sensation. Moreover what's the point of more languages when everyone is starting to unite under the universal banner called English for communications? For me, it make more disparity than common knowledge. I started learning English from scratch just so I could use the internet and be a more global person. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Enguun2020 (talk) 13:25, 10 October 2016‎


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

I think it would be great if Wikimedia moved their content to the Creative Commons 4.0 ShareAlike standard. Not only will this reduce possible unintended or punish copyright infringements that would have otherwise gone unnoticed despite the Berne Convention. Go for it, and please open a voting thing so we can decide what you can do!

By posting a copyright on someone's work, it does limit use. However, if the author can choose what level of CC protection they want and enforce it, the world would just be a better place. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Kdoggie770001 (talk) 02:45, 12 October 2016

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

I would like to see Wikipedia stay as is. I use this on a regular basis & find it extremely helpfull.


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)


there is absolutely everything wrong with wikipedia being licenced, the wiki is supposed to be a community compilation and this will change it. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 2016-10-13T13:02:07‎


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

I have contributed to and edited a number of entries of central interest to my life for quite a few years on the basis that Wiki provided a reasonable world view with ability to intervene where I felt or KNEW the writing was incorrect. I am happy to have MY work attributed but not happy to hand away MY rights to MY writing. I would support the elimination of known trolls and unethical editing (to try to enforce a specific religous, political. ideological opinion). This begs a more robust refereeing of input. Basically, I feel that version 3.0 serves its purpose well and 4.0 should be put on a back burner. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Southockendon (talk) 17:43, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Anonymous comment - Simple, if the new organization has plans for censorship upon "Misinformation", I wouldn't feel so obliged to want to see these people run Wikimedia. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 18:20, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

I would agree that license and Freedom does not go together

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

It is another gimic that would only help some people say.. You violated the Wiki License and create more trouble... —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 21:12, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Make it clear, simple, and unbiased

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

I would like to see a very clear graph of positives and negatives to this change of license. The proposal sounds extremely biased and wordy. If you are looking for true support, then make a simple, clear, and unbiased layout. Anything but just makes you look as though your lying about something.

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Considero que es una buena idea, gracias por preocuparse por los usuarios,mantener el contenido disponible en varios idiomas y adaptar las normas las veces que sea necesario para brindar un mejor servicio. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 02:32, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

wiki is a great and fantastic tool over internet. i learned and enjoyed many things. wiki is the only media which helps me in debates. so i strongly suggest that it should be upgraded default copyright license for wikimedia to creative commons 4.0 18:13, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Have to be neutral on this

This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

I've never felt the need to protect my "intellectual property," I'm much more interested in freely available information with the protection for rights of those who need them. I'd be inclined to support the proposal, but until I get a better sense of what Copyleft licenses protect and don't protect I'll have to stay neutral. I trust the Wikipedia community will make the best choice. Mahnut (talk) 23:56, 14 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:18, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Today, I am going to lecture you specifically on what is over the horizon with intellectual-property laws for the sake of your understanding.

Sincerely, solobranca —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Solobranca (talk) 17:42, 15 October 2016 (UTC)


I gave up on you guys long ago after you deleted 200+ of my photos from Wiki Commons. They were deleted cause I only licensed them for non-commercial use. What a waste of time. Many of my photos were not available anywhere else and were the best of their respective category. But greedy Wiki only wants commercial images. I suggest you offer a number of licenses like Internet Archive does. They offer commercial and non commercial licenses. This is the license I use

It is international, non commercial, don't change the image and give credit where it is due. Very simple and fair license.

You can also offer some type of award to encourage commercial donations. I'd also look at how commercial is defined. Just because a photo is used in a book it does not make it commercial for me. I'd say commercial is used in advertising where a model release is needed. So, even if I say no commercial use, my photos can be used for books that are sold where they are made for educational or art reasons and not used as advertising.

Beside my own photos I have a huge, huge archival collection of rare antique / found photos as well.

Look how the Internet Archive does it and learn some lessons Wiki.

Dan —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Danielteolijr (talk)

If we allowed more restrictive licenses, re-users would have to check every single image in an article to see if any of them were non-commercial. That's impractical and unfair. LtPowers (talk) 02:00, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
That's already the case in the english Wikipedia due to the use of "fair use" images, or because of trademark restrictions or personality rights, or different copyright laws (pma for example) in different countries. And it's not unfair to check if I've got the right to use anothers work before doing so, nor is it impractical to check 10 images in an article if they are properly licensed. That's just 10 new tabs with 10 clicks and you've got the image details right in front of you. -- DerBuddybär (talk) 07:39, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
We're talking about Wikimedia Commons, though. Commons is for free-use only. Wikipedia allows "fair use" images, as such copyrighted images are only uploaded to Wikipedia and not Commons.
Wikimedia Commons only accepts free-use images, meaning all images on Commons can be used for either commerical or non-commercial usage, and all images can be edited. Let me quote this page: " files that are not subject to copyright restrictions which would prevent them being used by anyone, anytime, for any purpose." Any purpose includes commerical usage and edits. The licence you're using on the Internet Archive prevents both of those usages. Also, if you "gave up" on "you guys" why are you still here? Thatkitten (talk) 07:19, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
The fact that you yourself don't see usage in a book as commercial usage doesn't mean that the law sees things the same way. ChristianKl (talk) 14:37, 9 October 2016 (UTC)

Yes, I want the reuser to check the correct licence for every piece they want to use. And I would like to have a another pool of "not so free" images hosted by Wikimedia to be used under more restrictive licences. Many companies are willing to contribute their content, but not under our licences. The problems of reusers are not our problem. --Eingangskontrolle (talk) 20:05, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Was soll das denn ?

Ich bin sicherlich weltweit nicht der einzige Mensch, der in WP mitarbeitet, dessen Kenntnisse der englischen Sprache jedoch nicht gut genug sind, um das alles zu verstehen. Mit derartigen unüberlegten bzw. schlecht vorbereiteten Aktionen trägt man nicht gerade zu einer Verbesserung der Enzyklopädie bei.--M@nfred 06:16, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Wenn sich der Herr Pensionist aus der niederösterreichischen Pampa nicht sattelfest fühlt in Englisch, dann soll er sich halt nicht an Diskussionen auf einer amerikanischen Website beteiligen. So einfach. --2A02:1206:45B4:590:916B:71BA:3CD8:23C6 09:15, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Wenn der Herr Pensionist aus der niederösterreichischen Pampa hierher verlinkt wird, dann kann er doch auch nur hier und nicht anderswo etwas von sich geben. So einfach. --M@nfred 10:31, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Der Herr Pensionist aus der niederösterreichischen Pampa könnte in Erwägung ziehen, einfach gar nichts zu sagen. --2A02:1206:45B4:590:582F:7247:A9E:314F 18:28, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Hallo IP, 1. Commons ist ein mehrsprachiges Projekt! 2. Jeder darf sich an dieser Diskussion beteiligen. Manfred und andere hier ist die deutsche Version.
Danke für den Hinweis, aber leider muß ich nach wie vor feststellen, daß diese Umfrage überaus schlecht vorbereitet ist. Über den angegebenen Link komme ich zwar auf die Projektseite auf Deutsch, aber die weiterführenden Links enden wieder auf Seiten in Englisch. Das bedeutet, daß alle Wikipedianer mit fehlenden oder mangelhaften Englischkenntnissen (die ja bereits bei den verwendeten Fachausdrücken beginnen) von dieser Befragung ausgeschlossen sind. Das Ergebnis kann daher nicht aussagekräftig, oder wie man es hier wohl besser formuliert "nicht relevant sein". Schönen Sonntag und freundliche Grüße an alle die so wenig Deutsch können wie ich Englisch. Have a nice day!--M@nfred 06:39, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
Wir mit fehlerhaftem Englich sollen ja auch ausgeschlossen werden, wir stören nur. --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 12:12, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
@Ralf Roletschek: Wie relevant ist eigentlich das Ergebnis einer Umfrage, an der sich weltweit nur Leute beteiligen können, deren Englisch so perfekt ist, daß sie auch Fachausdrücke beherrschen? Und wenn man dann noch als "Herr Pensionist aus der niederösterreichischen Pampa" bezeichnet wird, der besser Erbsen zählen sollte, dann frage ich mich wirklich, Was soll das denn ?--M@nfred 10:45, 12 October 2016 (UTC)
Qui impose sa langue impose sa pensée. Wikipédia facilite la diffusion de la culture anglo-saxonne 12:27, 12 October 2016 (UTC)

Das das hier eine Farce ist, wissen wir doch alle. Ihr glaubt doch nicht im Ernst, das dieses schöne Projekt durch eine Abstimmung aufzuhalten ist. Massive Änderungen an bestehenden Verträgen sind das. --Eingangskontrolle (talk) 20:14, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Migrate to Peer Production License

CC-BY-SA 4.0 is too permissive in that it allows non-contributors to exploit this work of the commons for their own gain. Instead of reforming around the overly permissive CC license in the proposal, we should migrate to the Peer Production License, or something similar, to help prevent exploitation and compel for-profit entities to help sustain Wikimedia and the general commons. --L3lackEyedAngels (talk) 15:51, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Why there is no more a "Simplified Chinese" (= Official National Chinese) (简体中文) translation available?

[citation needed] --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 23:06, 14 October 2016 (UTC)
I think you may try this link. --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 03:03, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

Flickr still uses Creative Commons 2.0

I've been on flickr for about 10-years, uploaded many of my pics and others have uploaded some of them too. All my pics are Attribution (CC-BY), if you click where it says "some rights reserved" or the CC symbol you will see what I mean by the 2.0 license. How will this 4.0 license affect uploading flickr pics? Raquel Baranow (talk) 16:38, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

The proposed change affects only text; I understand that images can already be uploaded under any CC-BY or CC-BY-SA license (including 4.0) at the copyright holder's choice. -- HarJIT (talk) 19:26, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
Thats not true - you have only a very limited choice of licences. And you have to pick at least one or the upload will not work.
It is true. You can upload images to Commons using any of the many free licenses listed on commons:Commons:Copyright tags, including CC-BY-2.0 and several other old CC-BY and CC-BY-SA licenses. You will need to use an upload form (not the Upload Wizard), leave the licensing dropdown as the default (None selected), and include the relevant template in the Summary field. The Upload Wizard only allows a limited choice of licenses, but that is not the only way you can upload your work. --Avenue (talk) 10:13, 16 October 2016 (UTC)


CC 4.0 is fine, as long as everyone respects the source (owner/writer/photographer), but many users/visitors ignore this. It's the same as viewing T&Cs, EULAs etc. - scroll down, scroll down, click "I agree" and then contravene the rules.

It's the reason I stopped contributing photos, and more recently, stopped contributions entirely.

Best of luck. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mjforbes (talk) 18:33, 16 October 2016 (UTC)

Y'a un os ma poule ! A l'adresse "", tu me demandes de donner mon avis :

"Conformément à notre engagement dans la Section 16 des Conditions d’utilisation, nous recevons pendant 30 jours les commentaires de la communauté au sujet de cette proposition d’amendement avant la discussion de la version finale par le Conseil de la Fondation. Des traductions des Conditions d’utilisation amendées sont disponibles en allemand, français, espagnol, russe, arabe et quelques autres langues. Nous vous invitons à contribuer à la traduction dans d’autres langues si vous le pouvez.

Comment pouvez-vous aider ?

   Exprimez-vous sur la proposition de modifications des Conditions d’utilisation.
   Traduisez l’amendement et d’autres documents dans d’autres langues, si vous le pouvez.
   Une fois le changement définitif complété, améliorez la présentation de la licence Creative Commons 4.0 dans les documents et les pages Wikimedia."

Sauf que j'arrive à une page en anglais...

Je ne vais pas t'accabler mais juste te poser deux questions. Tu parles de bon sens et ça m'a fait plaisir. Et juste après, t'as parlé de droit. Mais de quel droit ? Le Chinois ? Le Russe ? L'Américain ? Le Sud-Africain ? Comment valider et verrouiller un projet international en dehors de l'ONU ou de traités bilatéraux ?

Ca me ferait plaisir d'avoir ton opinion sur le sujet.

Fidèlement tien. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 23:50, 16 October 2016 (UTC)

What's the point?

We're like the kid at school with the latest toy, always wanting a better one. Can we please, for the love of G-d, pick a license and stick to it? It's hard enough to understand the licenses already, without you keep changing them! Sunil The Mongoose (talk) 22:53, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

The license hasn't been changed in over seven years. Back then, CC 4.0 didn't exist. — Earwig talk 23:22, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

It makes things easier. (at least i think)--Sam Brown (talk) 10:14, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

I just want to add to the comments here. The new license mostly works like the old one, same types of reuses and in most cases exactly the same attribution. The changes are about making the license easier to understand and use internationally, and a few technical things like the issues of database rights and moral rights discussed elsewhere on this talk page that help remove barriers to reuse in niche cases. We think these changes will lead to a better experience for both contributors and reusers of the Wikimedia projects. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:04, 17 October 2016 (UTC).


Going forward, fine, but does the CC v4 pose any problems with the GFDL? I remember the discussions around the time we moved from GFDL to CC, it wasn't backwards compatible (I think). Won't we have to stop using GFDL content? Is CC v4 backwards compatible with GFDL? Oaktree b (talk) 23:55, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Is CC v3 backwards compatible? I don't think so, but I'd be interested if you know of a discussion stating otherwise.--Strainu (talk) 06:44, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Even if you are correct about it not being backwards compatible what content do we use that use the GFDL? Emir of Wikipedia (talk) 11:02, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Legacy content, that was written before the big migration to cc. --h-stt !? 11:22, 10 October 2016 (UTC)
@Oaktree b: This change doesn't affect GFDL. That change was done previously and content is dual-licensed under CC and GFDL. In other words, a reuser can comply with either CC or GFDL, and the two are separate. This change affects which CC license applies, but doesn't touch the GFDL part. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:25, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

This is embarrassing to admit; I do not understand the legalese at all. I use/support Wikipedia but I am in the Medical field. Is there a Creative Commons 4.0 for Dummies?

Here you go, a simplified version of the proposed license that is being discussed: To deepen your understanding, click the links, keep reading, talk to people about it. You will understand eventually.--Rainer (talk) 14:14, 17 October 2016 (UTC)


In 1979 Cindy Gale Harrigill was the first female to enlist in the United States Navy as a mother of two small sons, and changed history for mothers with more than one child forever. She was inducted into the Navy in Dallas, Texas. The Seventh Area Fleet Admiral, Thomas B. Hayward approved her entry and stated, "Now Navy Regulations must be changed to approve your entry for all females." I am Cindy, now at 65 years old. I am a US Navy Veteran and a mother of four amazing sons.

FemaleNavyVeteran (talk) 20:44, 16 October 2016 (UTC)
In the context of this page, I read this as "Sometimes, rules must be changed to keep them appropriate." True. Whether CC4.0 is better than 3.0 is still up for debate, though. --Rainer (talk) 14:35, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Include a link to GFDL

Probably a minor concern, but flow-wise it would be good to include a link to GFDL. You already have a link to Creative Commons, just add the link to GFDL. Billclawson 00:53, 18 October 2016 (UTC)


By definition, Wikipedia & Wikimedia commons are edited by a limitless number of 'civilian' authors, are they not? - In order to self-correct and capture 'group progress' towards worldwide knowledge. Therefore full and accurate trace-ability of sources is impossible for any one page (e.g. thousands of people may have edited it, potentially under pseudonyms, with unknown reliability). Full attribution would require listing them all...

Thus just as your personal knowledge and reasoning need not be cited when writing academic or other material, this 'group' knowledge surely should not? (An exception being, of course, data tables, figures, photos or quotes with specific known and stated sources within Wikimedia/Wikipedia).

To attempt to reference accurately the Wikipedia/Wikimedia mixed-authorship content would be highly impractical, and could engender a slippery slope to extremely excessive referencing and citations. Further, I feel that, where the human populous is the true source, attributing the citation/reference to 'Wikimedia/Wikipedia' specifically (as is required by some academic institutions including my University) is actually inaccurate and attributes excessive weight to the organisation as an entity - an ethical question results. I believe this is why most academic bodies strongly advise against using Wikipedia/Wikimedia (except for images) at all. Which is, in a way, sad, thought understandable due to questionable provenance.

Anya, UK. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 2A02:C7D:5DEF:2F00:B190:FB45:BAE4:C0B2 (talk) 16:04, 18 October 2016 (UTC)


This section was archived on a request by: Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 22:45, 28 October 2016 (UTC)

what I want to say is the aim of Wikimedia is providing us with a platform to communicate with each other and share knowledge,and then enrich an app,any version of it is impossible to be perfect.I believe upgrading the default copyright license for Wikimedia can offer a more convinent environment for us to,I agree! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by TRIZWISDOM (talk) 00:09, 28 October 2016 (UTC)

Do we plan to allow unedited articles and media to remain under CC 3.0 indefinitely?

We have a number of images that haven't been updated in years, and I imagine that there is other media, and maybe even articles, that are the same. Do we plan to allow these to remain under CC 3.0 indefinitely? Will they still be under this license 5 years from now? Or will we at some point in the future migrate all remaining content to CC 4.0? -Thunderforge (talk) 06:33, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

This issue needs to be addressed. Is it not possible to upgrade all Wikipedia articles simultaneously and automatically instead of waiting for an edit to occur? Having Wikipedia licensed under two different Creative Commons license versions dependant on its edit history seems clumsy at best. RobbieIanMorrison (talk) 11:24, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Any version of any article was released under a specific license, and remains under it forever. The fact that later the web site migrates to a new license doesn't change the license on any content already present before the migration. The site can only migrate in accordance with the previous license; and the migration affects all new content on the site, including derivatives of the old content with copyrightable changes. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 18:51, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
It is, unfortunately, a bit clumsy, yes. But it will be possible to give clear info on each page about what license it's under, and new contributions will all be 4.0 licensed. I also think that period of transition doesn't outweigh the benefits of making the change. Separately for images, there's no issue with having them under many different licenses and keeping them like that. Commons has been doing it for years, and people just have to know to click on images to see the licensing info. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:19, 10 October 2016 (UTC)
It should also be noted that all text content on Wikipedia can already be used under CC-BY-SA 4.0, as the terms of CC-BY-SA 3.0 allow it; this fact is the only reason we can migrate in the first place. So the fact that older versions are under CC-BY-SA 3.0 actually grants extra rights, as opposed to detracting from them. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 13:01, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Only the "new" text ist available under the "new" licence. The "old" text was released under the "old" licence and has to stay there for ever. The use of bots to change all articles with one additional blank space in order to upgrade is looming at the horizon. George Orwell would be pleased. --Eingangskontrolle (talk) 20:20, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Such a bot would neither be necessary (the terms of CC-BY-SA 3 allow individual reusers to use the upgraded license, the only reason we are allowed to migrate without permission of every single author here) nor sufficient (You could certainly use any old source material under the old license, provided that you know you aren't possibly adding any new content in it; ad the only changes which count are copyrightable changes - and adding blank space doesn't count as copyrightable). עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 13:13, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

Can we also update the license of MediaWiki to GPLv3 or later?

I think GPLv2 is also old. -- 00:40, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

Maybe ask at Project:Support desk or RFC instead? --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 08:55, 14 October 2016 (UTC)
GPLv3 is not just upgrade to GPLv3, but it also has deep changes. --Marqin (talk) 16:52, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

Yes we should upgrade

Hi, I think that, just like we improve Wikipedia regularly, we should also use improved licences. Best regards. Lionel Allorge (talk) 13:06, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

My same feeling. Alberto Salvia Novella (es20490446e)

GUN Creaiticve Commos

I am a third-seat GUN Creaiticve Commos. It is still like in the enlightenment activities of WIKI administrator gentlemen. First of all is the fact that an understanding of the Creative commns. It is still want it to, "devoted to.--Nkinkade- (talk) 01:53, 20 October 2016 (UTC)


You should put more photos and give a brief description about it, as it stays as an example. Thanks. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 11:24, 20 October 2016 (UTC)


维基百科 最好能分辩 原创人 发布人 转发人 三者权限 —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 13:12, 20 October 2016 (UTC)


I did not see any Asian languages in the list of languages it will be translated into. At least Mandarin or Cantonese should be added, or possibly Hindi, because of how many people speak these languages as a first or second language. Viviane Carstairs (talk) 23:41, 20 October 2016 (UTC)


The last time there was a licensing change a poll of users was held. Will the WMF consider holding one this time? As others have pointed out, CC 4 involves some non-trivial changes. BethNaught (talk) 18:49, 21 October 2016 (UTC)

Before voting is better to reach as much consensus as possible. Alberto Salvia Novella (es20490446e)

"Creative Commons 4.0"

I support this change and will note reasons in the support/oppose/neutral section above. But I really dislike naming the proposal "Creative Commons 4.0". There's no such thing. Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 or CC-BY-SA-4.0 is the license up for discussion. Mike Linksvayer (talk) 00:07, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

is this going to change wikipedia?

It will change the license under which Wikipedia text content is published. See the FAQ above for more information. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 03:29, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

How can information be free if it is bound to a license?

CC 4.0 says the following:

"...we require that when necessary all submitted content be licensed so that it is freely reusable by anyone who cares to access it..."

If the intent is to make the information free, why is a license required? Requirement of a license binds the information to the license. How can information be free if it is bound to a license? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Dbudge1 (talk) 19:16, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Your understanding of licenses is backwards. Intellectual property without a license is generally "all rights reserved" by default. You need a license to make something "free". Licenses never take away rights, they can only give people rights. If you value "free" content, one of the most important rights not given away is the the ability for others to re-assign the license status. This ensures others cannot assume ownership of the material themselves by publishing it with a more restrictive license. Jason Quinn (talk) 12:51, 15 October 2016 (UTC)
Also, if a person published a modified version of a Wikimedia page but prohibited other from modifying it, that would be a restriction of freedom too. That's why we require licence conditions. --NaBUru38 (talk) 20:42, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

When Wikipedia first came out, I did not think it was a credible source, because so many people contributed. It turns out that all those contributions have made the site one of the best research tools around. All the items are cited, and things can be changed or updated. Now, I start my research with Wikipedia, and go from there. I have found the historical stories wonderful, and well written. I am a Historian, and Wikipedia makes research a dream. It might not be perfect, but it is an excellent research tool. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 04:49, 22 October 2016 (UTC)


When Wikipedia first came out, I did not think it was a credible source, because so many people contributed. It turns out that all those contributions have made the site one of the best research tools around. All the items are cited, and things can be changed or updated. Now, I start my research with Wikipedia, and go from there. I have found the historical stories wonderful, and well written. I am a Historian, and Wikipedia makes research a dream. It might not be perfect, but it is an excellent research tool. I am all for any changes to make Wikipedia better for everyone. Have a great day! 08:48, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Permalink to archives

1. I refer to the presentation of Dr. Clemens Rehm at Kornwestheim (Wikicon2016 Germany; subject: Enter the archives !) As an archivist he demands permalinks for the reproduction of online documents. Is it possible to insert a field for permalinks in the licence to show the owner of the documents ?Nina Eger (talk) 18:01, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

2. I prefer German copyright. There´s a copyrigt since 1965 and a copyright at the beginning of 20century. --Nina Eger (talk) 18:01, 22 October 2016 (UTC)


The proposal does not mention some major changes in 4.0:

  • "Under 4.0, a licensee’s rights are reinstated automatically if she corrects a breach within 30 days of discovering it." Currently, a CC license terminates when a licensee violates the license terms.
  • "The [4.0] licenses explicitly permit licensees to satisfy the attribution requirement with a link to a separate page for attribution information." This does not reflect global jurisdiction.
  • "The 4.0 license suite uniformly and explicitly waives moral rights held by the licensor where possible to the limited extent necessary to enable reuse of the content in the manner intended by the license. Publicity, privacy, and personality rights held by the licensor are expressly waived to the same limited extent."

We work for free; everybody can use our work for free; our only "pay" is a simple attribution. 4.0 reduces these few rights even more. Oppose Strong Oppose. --Martina Nolte (talk) 04:40, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Not sure, but I have more or less the same conclusions. I can probably accept point two, but point three worries me. It is also the question about what will be relicensed, Licenses on non-collaborative content should not be changed, that is files uploaded with a specific license. — Jeblad 05:35, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Same here. Oppose Strong Oppose. -- Pratyeka (talk) 11:56, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I just agree with everything that Martina Nolte just wrote, so I don't agree with this change.
I still don't like the real life situation of honest facts are removed or hidden on this site every single day. I don't agree with this change either.
I totally agree with Martina: Oppose Strong Oppose, even after having read the response from WMF Legal. Obviously an aggravation for contributors of content whose position is already bad.--Mautpreller (talk) 18:23, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
I also oppose the new version and would like everything to remain exactly the same. Us Wikipedians only have a few rights here on Wikipedia, and I would like to see those rights stay. I didn't know where to comment, that's why I'm commenting here. I hope that's ok. Anyways, very strong oppose. I don't want this change.

Oppose Strong Oppose --Infopage100 (talk) 03:51, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

  • Oppose Strong Oppose Fully in agreement with this, all three of these "improvement" severely detract from the rights of authors, while any benefit is at best hypothetical. CFCF 💌 📧 20:33, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Why are these opposes not in the main oppose section? SpinningSpark 15:44, 14 October 2016 (UTC)
    • Hi Martina Nolte, Jeblad, Pratyeka, Mautpreller, Infopage100, and CFCF: I wanted to invite you to join an office hour chat with the legal team on 19:00–20:00 UTC on Friday, October 21 in #wikimedia-officeconnect on IRC. If you are able to join, I think it would be helpful to discuss these points in more detail. Thank you, Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 23:53, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
      • I simply don't understand why you don't elaborate on this subject here, on this talk page. I don't use Echo and I don't participate in chats on IRC. I prefer a publich debate on a public site, easy to access and transparent for everybody.--Mautpreller (talk) 20:45, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Beware: you are totally losing your moral rights!!

Totally agree with Martina Nolte; all the legal blah-blah tries to hide the fact that they want to strip out ALL our moral rights, even if someone tries to harm one's reputation or honor. Check the text: "The moral right of integrity may provide creators with a source for redress if an adaptation represents derogatory treatment of their work, typically defined as “distortion or mutilation” of the work or treatment that is “prejudicial to the honor, or reputation of the author.” [...] "The CC licenses are intended to minimize the effect of moral rights."[13] Oppose Strong Oppose. Schoenstater (talk) 15:15, 6 October 2016 (UTC).

Strongly oppose. Mannanan51 (talk) 15:03, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

I too strongly oppose this for the same reasons above - Moral rights and also Share Alike provisions which I disagree with as Wikipedia articles should be freely shareable and thus Public domain not copyrighted. Creative Commons is increasingly more restrictive and against the spirit of free sharing of information BaronVonchesto (talk) 10:09, 12 October 2016 (UTC)

Not a good situation, see for example this decision to stop contributing in response to loss of moral rights. However, I don't think that 4.0 makes that situation any the worse; it was bad before. This collaborative effort has backed itself into a corner, ridden roughshod over whomever, particularly in Commons, where there is little discussion (I believe the multilingual nature hampers discussion) and effectively no recourse against someone determined to edit war and insult contributors or others affected by contributions. The wiki concept may have reached a dead end by going in this direction. Sminthopsis84 (talk) 16:21, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Seems that your complains aren't about this particular license, but about the spirit of copyleft in the first part. Alberto Salvia Novella (es20490446e)

Forget point 3

I have been editing in the Wikipedia and its sibling projects since its very beginnings many years ago. Not big changes, but every now and then small corrections, links added, and so on. Actually many hours of my life are gone into it. And you know what? I have never registered as a user! I do it for others, I do it for my future self, I do it for the sake of it. Yes, it is nice if users of your work recognize your effort, it makes you feel like humanity slowly rises into a better race, and you feel part of that too. An attribution note also gives Wikipedia more visibility (which it doesn't need anyway). But are you seriously suggesting that the lack of that attribution represents some personal insult against you? I need no personal reward and I dare to suggest you to learn to live without that as well. Be humble to be great. Give freely what you get for free. So forget your point number 3. Your moral rights live within you. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 09:41, 06 October 2016 (UTC)

I'm sure I don't comprehend all the issues being raised, but I contribute for the same reasons as that user, not for any personal recognition. For instance, all the figures I have added to are licensed as CC0 (Universal Public Domain Dedication). So I am happy to "forget point 3" and support the transition from CC-by-sa 3.0 to CC-by-sa 4.0.--Bob K (talk) 12:56, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Seriously, if you do something good you should not think about "recognition' and "attribution". A good deed only counts when it is humble. Nevertheless, Thanks to everyone who contributes! I may not know your names, but I have you in my heart.

Response from WMF Legal

Hi @Martina Nolte: I can reply to all three of your points. I think that it is not as bad as you're worried about in all three cases, and I hope I'm able to address the concerns.

I. We want to encourage people to reuse WP content while ensuring compliance with license terms. In the cases we have seen, non compliance is usually innocent and comes from lack of awareness of the terms of the applicable license. CC 4.0 goes a long way towards being clearer and more readable and gives such good-faith users a chance to remedy their non-compliance before it amounts to a breach. Users who fail to remedy these issues in 30 days will still be subject to enforcement as is presently the case. Also, as I mentioned above, we would encourage you to report instances of someone improperly reusing Wikimedia content to the legal team at the Wikimedia Foundation. While we, unfortunately, don't have the resources to provide support in every case, there are some cases we receive (especially in combination with trademark abuse) that we're able to remedy, and we can offer direct you to helpful resources even in the cases where we can't help directly. We think the changes in CC 4.0 will put Wikimedians (and the legal team at the Wikimedia Foundation) in a better position to encourage more compliance with the terms of the license.

II. For the second point, while it is true that different jurisdictions have not agreed about the proper method of attribution for the CC 3.0 licenses, this does not affect the Wikimedia projects. This is because the existing terms of use allow attribution through a link as part of contributing to the projects under the 3.0 license, so there will be no change in that regard when going to 4.0. We think this make sense for the Wikimedia projects in particular because the many contributors to an article make it difficult to provide accurate and up to date attribution, whereas a link to the article allows a reader access to all the attribution information by going through that link and reviewing the information on the projects.

III. For the last point on moral rights, first, it’s worth noting that the license states that it waives moral rights where one is legally allowed to do that, so it does not remove all moral rights. It’s also important to be aware that the issue of moral rights varies considerably by jurisdiction. People in some countries see them as so important that they cannot be waived, whereas other countries have very weak moral rights and believe that the ability of others to change and remix content, even in ways that might insult the original author, is actually an important right for the public. You'll also see this reflected differently in the policies of different language projects. We see the role of the legal structure for the Wikimedia movement as one that creates as much opportunity as possible for contributors of different cultures to collaborate, remix works, and add to the world's knowledge. People contributing to the projects can then choose to set more strict policies for themselves as they wish, such as German Wikipedia choosing not to allow images that might be legal under U.S. fair use law, as one example.

Here, the moral rights waiver helps to preserve the structure of WP as an open and freely usable portal of knowledge that is consistent worldwide. Waiving moral rights where possible ensures that contributors (in certain jurisdictions) are limited in their ability to seek removal of content that is legal in many countries. This is consistent with how the Wikimedia projects have handled moral rights issues to date, and this waiver helps to preserve the status quo and ensure that the projects support the freedoms of users around the world. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 17:50, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

But you're not "preserving" contributors rights, CC 4 licenses ask contributors to waive more than just their copyrights. Works released in the public domain retain their moral, privacy and publicity rights as can be seen in the CC-Public Domain Dedication, works released as CC4 do not. - hahnchen (talk) 10:09, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Hi @Hahnchen: The CC0 license, if you look at the official legal code actually does waive moral rights, publicity rights, and pretty much anything else the author of the work could conceivably waive. The idea is that somebody who finds the work can just use it for free, however they want, without the need to ask permission. The Wikimedia projects aren't going that far because it's still important to give credit to contributors and to help make sure free knowledge stays free with the SA requirement, but the changes to include a moral rights waiver helps (emphasis helps, it's still not perfect) allow people to use the content on the Wikimedia projects freely without running into unanticipated trouble later. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 19:15, 10 October 2016 (UTC)
The CC 4.0 licenses only waive moral rights to the extent that they prevent others from reusing your work in ways that already violate the license. They don't waive your moral rights completely. Qzekrom (talk) 03:15, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

No narrative exists to support informed commenting

TLDR: The lack of a primer on the context of this proposal lowers the legitimacy of this community comment process. Part of the solution probably includes more WMF investment in doing basic documentation of topics when seeking community input.

This is a complicated issue. I am happy that discussion is started. I appreciate what the WMF has drafted on the proposal page because it is concise and easy to understand. I still wish to complain a little bit that I feel that the WMF does not provide enough community documentation to encourage informed decision making in community comments.

The point of discussions like this proposal to change copyright license is to encourage thoughtful conversation. When the WMF calls these discussions, they attract a lot of interest and community attention. Many people who would comment are eager to learn about the issue, and read how the situation came to be, and what has happened in the past. When the community discusses the past and proposals for future changes, that process builds community culture and increases the likelihood of thoughtful comments. When the WMF collects many thoughtful comments, those perspectives establish the legitimacy of community-wide changes like this one.

I regret that the WMF organizes these discussions while avoiding investment in educational materials which would help the community to understand how to comment on discussions like this. In this case, the educational materials that I would want is a rough post-mortem on what has happened in the past. Reasons why the WMF avoids creating documentation and educational materials include the risk of misspeaking, the fact that creating documentation increases liability, in general people doing projects dislike making documentation, and the difficulty of determining when it is and is not appropriate to create documentation. However, if the WMF does not create documentation, then the burden to gather the necessary information to become informed falls to the community. Some people have a fantasy that crowdsourcing solves everything, and that if a problem does not get a crowdsourced solution, then it never mattered anyway. In this case that is not so. This case is special because it attracts the attention of thousands of people, it already has received thousands of comments, the interest in understanding the issue is huge, and it is implausible to imagine the body of discussion can be organized without dedicated staff to outline where more information can be found. If the WMF is confident that it needs to summon hundreds of hours of brain power and community engagement to focus on an issue, then the WMF ought to be confident that the issue merits hiring a technical writer to draft a narrative which can give enough background information to create a possibility of informed commenting among those who read the background narrative. If the background narrative does not exist in an accessible way, then the validity of the discussion process and outcome is lowered.

Here is an example of the diversity of links which are likely to be of interest to anyone who tries to understand the issue:

It is not feasible to expect many people to jump among all these necessary background documents to come to understand the story. They should be summarized in one place, with links, and the WMF should use staff labor to do that especially when demanding comments on a schedule.

I am not aware of a coherent narrative in existence which presents the story of our licensing, and gives a timeline, and provides links to all of these critical pieces of information. If any individual wants to know the story, they would need to jump around as I did and compile their own narrative. I am publishing a little bit here, but what bothers me is that internally WMF staff must have also compiled a narrative to make the case among WMF legal and others. Why does WMF not share? Surely WMF has the best compiled narrative, because whatever story the WMF has was good enough to convince internal staff. There is no historical narrative linked from the proposal page. Anyone who does not have memory from 2007-2010 will be lacking access to important aspects of this proposal.

Overall, I support the proposed changes but I challenge WMF to do better documentation. There is some documentation which is so complicated and boring that volunteers are unlikely to start it, but if the WMF would invest in staff to help compile boring outlines with links and simple narratives, then crowdsourced volunteers can build on that to make the educational tools which encourage informed commenting in proposals like this one. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:26, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

Does Stallman need to give permission?

Do we have to ask en:Stallman for special en:GFDL compatibility permission again? The last time, he said, "Second, this permission is no longer available after August 1, 2009. We don't want this to become a general permission to switch between licenses: the community will be much better off if each wiki makes its own decision about which license it would rather use, and sticks with that." Do we still need Free Software Foundation permission to make license changes? Can anyone get a comment from Stallman about this? I would feel better to have his comment. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:26, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

No. No, we don't. We don't need input from him, though of course he's welcome. Reading your big comment above, I think you misunderstand what this change to section 7 entails. All the content that was GFDL-only has already been irrevocably dual-licensed. (Perhaps some guidance making it clearer that this is the case is needed?) I strongly suspect it's already at one or more of the links you provide, but you just need to read 'em. Did you look at the diff? Please consider removing or striking the GFDL-related parts of your comments, User:Bluerasberry. --Elvey (talk) 17:37, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Confirming his permission is not needed here--the only consent needed here is from the Wikimedia community. This proposal is not for a relicensing of old material; it is choosing a new default license for new material, which will be compatible with all of the existing material under previous versions of the license. (FWIW, I am an FSF board member and a copyright lawyer.) Kat Walsh (spill your mind?) 00:59, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for confirming, Kat Walsh. Please respond and consider removing or striking the GFDL-related parts of your comments, User:Bluerasberry.--Elvey (talk) 23:14, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
@Mindspillage and Elvey: I fail to understand what you both are saying. Can you please talk me through this? Imagine a Wikipedia article from 2015. Someone edits it in 2017 after a this proposed license change, adding a paragraph. The new text has three licenses - GFDL, CC3, and CC4.
Since text after the proposal will be triply licensed for as long as pre-2017 text exists, is it not correct that all three licenses need to be intercompatible? And since Stallman had to agree to make CC3 and GFDL intercompatible, is it not also necessary to get his permission that GFDL and CC4 should be intercompatible? A paragraph with 2015 and 2017 text will have 2015 and 2017 licensing, correct? If someone modifies 2015 text under a new license, old CC licenses do not go away, but rather all copyright holders of the previous text retain their rights and new contributors layer an additive new license to it, correct?
What happened previously that required special permission to make CC3 and GFDL interchangeable, but which is not happening now to require GFDL and CC4 to be interchangeable? When CC4 sentences are mixed throughout a CC3/GFDL work, is it correct that the entire work gets an additive CC4 license over it all? Blue Rasberry (talk) 12:35, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

@Bluerasberry: We added a bit to the FAQ about why we use the CC BY-SA license at all, which I hope addresses some of the documentation. We might like to get more into the history as well, I think it's a good point to raise, though at least initially we weren't thinking about it from the perspective of earlier licenses, but rather from the perspective of improving the existing CC license to a better version. The reason for thinking about it that way might also address the further comments in this part of the discussion. That is, there isn't a need to look at GFDL compatibility here. The Wikimedia projects (barring a few with custom licenses) are dual-licensed CC BY-SA and GFDL. What that means is that a reuser can comply with either, and they're two separate things. Changing to a different version of CC that improves clarity and international understandability doesn't affect the GFDL part or interact with it at all. GFDL was affected originally because it was the only license there was at first and getting to any kind of CC license required permission from GFDL. But once you have the dual-licensing in place, as we do here, there's no further GFDL interaction, it's just a change to the CC part as allowed under the CC license itself. I hope that makes sense, it is a series of license interactions and permissions that makes this all possible, and if there are still questions, I can try to address them and clarify. But the TLDR version is that it works. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 20:23, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Think of an article as a river. Initially, it was just the GFDL. Then, thanks to a short gap in the bank, a portion of that river split off to become the CC-3.0 stream, following the path of another which is also fed from other sources, while the original GFDL continues. The CC-3.0 stream goes under a bridge, and comes out the other end as the CC-4.0 stream. You can drink from either source - either GFDL or CC-3.0 upstream of the bridge, or GFDL or CC-4.0 downstream - and it tastes much the same because they are mostly fed from the same source, and any new rain landing between the streams flows equally into both of them. But you cannot make water flow backwards under the bridge; nor is it likely that the two streams will combine later on. Each stream can create rivulets of their own; but they stick to either side because of the land dividing the streams. GreenReaper (talk) 05:06, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

@Elvey, Mindspillage, Jrogers (WMF), and GreenReaper: Thanks for talking with me. I put more thought into the issue and had more conversations, and I am supportive of the change without reservation anymore. The diff of proposed changes seems right for me, and although I had uncertainty about what was going on and fear of what might be lost, I came to believe that this really is not such a big deal.
I would like to voice the experience that I had about being confused and feeling like I ought to spend time researching the issue. I did - I talked with a lot of people, and emailed Stallman, and I even spread my own doubts to other people by starting conversations when I myself was so unsure.
Originally I was concerned that Wikimedia's relationship with the GFDL would become weaker with this change. That was my mistake, but still, it was a fear that I could not quickly reconcile and I wish I could have corrected it sooner. Now I am not able to see how I got that original mistaken idea. As I noted above, I would like the WMF to continually strive to communicate better on complicated policy issues like this one. Now that I understand better, it already seems simple enough, but at the start of this, I did not know how I should feel or how to understand this. The learning experience was useful for me but I wish I could have come to this conclusion sooner. I marked my calendar to remind myself to do more research. I know that I am one of many who feel protective of the integrity of Wikimedia projects and want to understand and give good comments.
Thank you so much for talking things through with me. You have my support. Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:47, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia would give rights to Licensees that contributors did not give to WP

I state the above as a fact, without judgment. By agreeing to CC3.0, contributors gave Wikipedia (and anyone else) the right to do the above.

In layman's terms (IANAL), contributors gave WP specific rights. One of these rights is to give others the same rights. Now, one of these rights is very special: 3.0 states in section 4 "Restrictions", subseciton b) that the licensee may redistribute the work under a different license. Quote from CC-BY-SA 3.0:

"You may Distribute or Publicly Perform an Adaptation only under the terms of: (i) this License; (ii) a later version of this License with the same License Elements as this License; (iii) a Creative Commons jurisdiction license (either this or a later license version) that contains the same License Elements as this License (e.g., Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 US)); (iv) a Creative Commons Compatible License."

This gives CC the power to add rights to or remove rights from future versions of the license. This is what happens here, 4.0 adds rights in comparison to 3.0. (Of course, for versions already published, removing rights would not be effective, since licensees may simply opt for the lower license version. ) Surprisingly, this can allow Wikipedia, together with the license authors, to give rights to the licensees (the reusers) that the contributors never explicitly gave to Wikipedia. With this power comes responsibility, to at least properly explain what these rights are.

  • Clearly explain each legal difference between 3.0. and 4.0, in terms that contributors can easily understand.
  • Clearly explain the issues that the change is supposed to resolve, with practical examples.
  • Clearly explain potential drawbacks of the change, with practical examples. If the drawbacks are necessary to achieve any gains, explain which ones.
  • As of 2016-10-17, the waiver of moral rights is not adequately explained.
  • 4.0 bundles uncontroversial changes (international applicability, ease of attribution for example) with controversial changes (waiving of moral rights). Prefer to unbundle these.
  • If need be, WP should roll its own license. In cooperation with CC, a CC 4.1 might be an option.
  • In my view, this change is big enough to justify a representative ballot.

--Rainer (talk) 16:02, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

I just want to point out that those rights are not given by Wikipedia, they are given by CC. Anyone can already use a 4.0 license with content from Wikipedia, they just can't upload it to Wikipedia with said license. Also said "controversial changes" only apply to the author of the modified work; i.e. the original authors' moral rights are not waived. I do agree that Wikimedia should give people more information about this things because, for example, I believe if more people understood more about what moral rights really are and why they are waived, less people would be against this proposed change. --OscarAbraham (talk) 09:49, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

What is the ROI

That’s my question : what is the return on investment ? I think it is negative --ArséniureDeGallium (talk) 20:02, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Check this section to see what's really lost and gained from this proposed change: --OscarAbraham (talk) 09:33, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Official translations

What on Earth do You mean with official translations on Wikimedia? Made by an authorized translator having payed fee and taxes? --Höyhens (talk) 08:15, 18 October 2016 (UTC)

The meaning is that the license has official translations, each of which is considered a valid expression of a single license; rather than separate licenses which say much the same thing in different languages, but which may have slight differences due to the details of a particular jurisdiction. It is nothing to do with translating Wikipedia's content, it is just to do with ensuring the license can be understood by everyone and works everywhere. GreenReaper (talk) 04:16, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

What's really the issue here

For all the comments about the extra permissiveness of CC-BY-SA 4.0, these rights aren't the issue to be discussed here; these rights are already effective, ever since CC-BY-SA 4.0 came out. There are primarily 2 issues here which do apply:

  1. The rights of other people to reuse Wikipedia content on sites which still use CC-BY-SA 3 - by migrating to the new license, we make this no longer legal for new content.
  2. The rights of our editors to incorporate text licensed under CC-BY-SA 4, or other licenses compatible with this but not with CC-BY-SA 3.

I would tend to think that #2 is more important for us to consider, and that over time #1 will be less of an issue and #2 will be more. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 13:07, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

Yes! I'm surprised that none of the materials or comments besides this one so far mentions #2 (though I've only skimmed). Mike Linksvayer (talk) 23:59, 21 October 2016 (UTC)
Or #1. The only way to fix both for all is for CC to make CC-BY-SA-4.0 donor compatible with CC-BY-SA-3.0. Mike Linksvayer (talk) 00:19, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
For the sake of a complete argument, could you please mention some sites that require CC-BY-SA 3 that are not part of Wikimedia? Thank you :-) --OscarAbraham (talk) 09:03, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Commercial use

I'm happy with CC Attribute/sharelike as the appropriate licence for Wikipedia content (and publish all my own content under this). However I also agree with previous commentor that unrestricted commercial use should be disallowed, which you can do by making it Attribute/sharelike/nocommerce. This doesn't ban commercial use, but mandates that they seek permission from Wikipedia, which either deters casual exploitation, or at least provides legal remedy against the most egregious abusers. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Afonka Bida (talk) 09:50, 20 October 2016 (UTC)

It means they would have to seek permission from each individual contributor to any article they wished to reproduce, not "Wikipedia"; a license is not a copyright assignment. Contributors agreed to release their work under a compatible license as defined by Creative Commons. CC-BY-NC-SA would not be considered compatible for relicensing existing content because it takes away a freedom granted by the original licensor: to use work commercially. It's best to think of this ias a "what license shall Wikipedia et. al. use going forward, which is compatible with everything that's already here?" The choices are basically "stick with CC-BY-SA 3.0" or "go to CC-BY-SA 4.0" (although the GPLv3 or the Free Art License are also technically options, being compatible licenses). GreenReaper (talk) 04:37, 23 October 2016 (UTC)
Isn't it ok already for now? asking others for permission from known/unknown "contributors" might cause problems since you don't really know who exactly made that and when they would reply. ------------- LoveGG
Well, exactly - we don't want to go asking everyone, so we want to go with an option they have already indicated is acceptable (using a "later" version of the same license). GreenReaper (talk) 19:02, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

The waving of moral rights is not a big a deal

I just want to put my two cents about this matter:

First, it is important to consider that all Creative Commons licenses are written in legalese. That means that some expressions do not mean what they might mean to us in a more common situation. Some things that are very important might seem redundant and unnecessary to the common eye, while some others that are vital for the purpose of the document might seem dangerous and unwanted.

Second, it might help to imagine the general mechanism that a knowledgeable person would use when writing an international license of this kind. Copyright law is a very complex labyrinth that varies a lot from place to place and that has a lot of stuff open for interpretation. It's so complex, that the best way to deal with it is to get as close as possible to rewrite it from the scratch. That means that the writer of the license would have to do two things, generally: One, to assert and stress the conditions under which a work might be copied, and two, to renounce as strongly as possible to every other imaginable right that the authors might have over their work.

Now, taking into account this information, I want to say that moral rights might be the most unnecessary part of copyright law. I think anyone that reads about it, at least the Wikipedia page about it, can see that it leaves a lot of room for subjective thought and interpretation. It can be used in a lot of manners contrary to a free culture, such as censorship and ransom-like practices. The only useful part of moral rights is the right of attribution, and that right is unequivocally already demanded by this license. Other parts, especially those concerning denigration of the author, should be covered by other parts of the law of each country; for example, privacy and anti-defamation laws. The right to publish something anonymously should be a matter of privacy, not of copyright. The extent of how and how much someone might be legally denigrated, by their work or by others' work, shouldn't have anything to with copyright.

I don't want to get too deep into this matter because it's not the main point of this discussion; but I want to underline that moral rights are a very subjective and unimportant part of copyright, even if the term has the word "moral" in it. The function of copyright law is supposed to be to benefit the public by encouraging intellectual creation by making it easier for an author to receive an economic compensation. Do not worry about this so called "moral rights", your moral being is protected by other parts of the law. OscarAbraham (talk) 08:57, 23 October 2016

Subsequent contributions by others are above in another section about moral rights. Sminthopsis84 (talk) 16:24, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

Change of licence to existing texts?

I think, that all granted licences become invalid as soon as you change the licence later. The foundation has made the same mistake once, taking advantage of a loophole in the text, which allowed another version of the GFDL-licence, but with a completely different "spirit" and text. --Eingangskontrolle (talk) 20:39, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I think so too! That's only a red tape game. Bestoernesto (talk) 00:32, 25 October 2016 (UTC)

I'm not sure I understand. Section 4b of CCBYSA3.0 states that one can distribute an adaptation under the terms of the license or of a later version of the license with the same License Elements (so CCBYSA4.0). This is why WMF can change the license and our reusers can still reuse previous content under CCBYSA4.0. The only thing that changes is that reusers can no longer distribute newer versions under CCBYSA3.0. GFDL2CCBYSA was a big change and the way it was done, by introducing the loophole with dedication to Wikimedia, was repulsive, for me as well. Upgrading the version number does not seem to come anywhere close to that.--Strainu (talk) 21:10, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

It does state that the license will apply only to new articles and articles edited after the introduction date. I assume that a bot can be used to place the licensing information on the relevant articles. However, with the occasional outlier that will remain unedited until the end of time, I think it's safe to assume that in a reasonably short space of time, most - if not all - of the old articles will be updated. This is more an issue for derivative content (any content derived from an older 3.0 license may be distributed under 3.0 [EDIT: pretty sure the license still stands on derivative content from 3.0 content, whereas as you say, 4.0 could not be distributed under 3.0, which IS more restrictive[EDIT #2: in that 3.0, depending on jurisdiction, may not cover sui generis databases]] or newly under 4.0 - a "not more restrictive license", as per the terms of 3.0). But then the onus for retaining and stating the license is on the creator of derivative work as per the Attribution-Share Alike terms, which require derivatives to display the appropriate license anyway. Benjitheijneb (talk) 23:02, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

To put it simple: If the terms of trade are changed by a company, i can cancel the contract. I have never agreed to the changed terms. If I edited a text in 2007, I have never agreed to use this text under a licence enforced later. So you have to delete all of my content. --Eingangskontrolle (talk) 19:51, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

@Eingangskontrolle: There are a couple things going on here that allow for the upgrade, which the users who already replied ably covered. First, as Strainu explains, the licenses themselves have an upgrade provision in them that allows for derivative works to be relicensed under a later version of the work. So, by editing text on Wikipedia, each editor agrees to allow for relicensing in the limited cases allowed by the existing license, and going from CC BY-SA 3.0 to CC BY-SA 4.0 is one of those cases. Second, as Benjitheijneb explains, older contributions are not immediately changing, rather articles need to be edited for the license to change to 4.0. The combination of the two means that an upgrade would not be a change to the terms of trade from 2007 and would not cancel the agreements made by users who provided older contributions. I hope that makes sense. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 18:54, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

BSD for the win

BSD style license. Free should be free. Commercial, non-commercial, academic, any use. If it's posted here, it's public domain, but adding the BSD license will indemnify the Wiki foundation.

Zaki cadani Sakariye mohamed (talk) 19:42, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

I disagree, the best way to really support freedom is to spread it. -- Martinkunev (talk) 13:34, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Martinkunev. Otherwise people just leech your work.
Support BSD license. All share-alike licenses are pretty much the same anyway. 17:04, 24 October 2016 (UTC)
Unworkable suggestion. Non-starter. It's totally impossible to switch to BSD (or CC4-BY or CC0). Why: To do so would be to be stealing the intellectual property of our editors. --Elvey (talk) -- as already stated 01:31, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

How will this re-licensing affect impartiality in Wikimedia?

It's very simple: given the many diverse biases in the media, How will this re-licensing affect media impartiality in Wikimedia? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 2602:301:77fb:8100:c965:4a35:6271:7494 (talk) 04:10, 23 October 2016 (UTC)

It will only affects the usage permissions of the content, but not its impartiality. Alberto Salvia Novella (es20490446e) 12:41, 24 October 2016 (UTC)

Copyright is taken too seriously here. 14:51, 26 October 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia should stay public

I think, wikipedia should stay public. It was made from people to people so there should be no restriction of use, even the main idea of Wikipedia is "The universal distribution of knowledge" so it would make no sense to make it private. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 11:23,2 November 2016 (GMT)

Whenever work is published on the internet, the owner automatically retains copyright of this work under US law. It is required to release at least some of those rights to make it more free than the default. Hopefully that makes sense. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:17, 28 October 2016 (UTC)

Olivier Hammam

plutôt Neutral Neutral, non que ça ait grande importance, dans des cas de ce genre la logique veut que le changement rallie une large majorité parce que le nouveau est majoritairement ressenti comme préférable à l'ancien. Disons que je n'ai pas d'opinion sur cette question, sinon que la licence choisie permette de diffuser librement les contenus que j'ajoute au projet, de ce point de vue la licence actuelle, celle précédente et celle future se valent. Pour moi, ce que je verse dans le projet qui provient d'une source externe et dont je suis l'auteur est systématiquement mis dans le domaine public... Olivier Hammam (talk) 09:57, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

@Olivier Hammam: Je l'ai déplacé vos commentaires sur cette page afin que l'équipe juridique pourrait répondre. / I have moved your comments to this page so that the Legal team might respond. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:09, 28 October 2016 (UTC)

{gobbledygook , get it right.

I am an average person and have read this over. WOW. You guys need to try for a "for dummies" version of the legal speak. Seems like this is not in the best interest to keeping your site the way it was intended. I would say to screw the other places that are insisting for a change to make it available to their people. Change it for them and their accessing and editing but with the stipulation that THEY are the one's with limited access to add/edit and that all added or edited materials from Them will revert to OUR licensing requirements to be shared with us. The ONE thing I can Count on is that these pages can and are added to and edited by everyday common people. Yes, I want factual stuff but even that should come with a grain of salt. Everything should be subject to ridicule and knowing that going in is a bonus NOT a minus.It reinforces critical thinking and insist the reader 'not stop' there but to verify through more than once source the validity of something. I do not like the way the licensing is written and it seems as if it is more confining and restrictive. I am not for that. I see something that is slowly changing to just another thing we will have to pay for down the road when it gets to a place where everyone else did the work and now someone else will profit from. I am sure I probably got most of this wrong but if you really wanted us to understand it would already be that way. gobbledygook and legal speak should be disallowed. Laws and licenses should be written for the common reader that they are intended for. ENOUGH. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 12:32, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

In terms of legal speak 4.0 is little different from 3.0. Yes the licenses can be pretty legal jargon heavy but that is in part because they are trying to get copyright to do something it wasn't really originally designed to do.Geni (talk) 18:40, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

An example?

I have asked Jameslwoodward to also contribute on this page since he knows a lot about copyright issues and this sounds like some very legalistic and technical stuff. But, if someone could provide an example of how this proposed change would play out I think it would be helpful for the rest of us. Thank you!Monopoly31121993 (talk) 12:55, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

On my talk page at Commons, I have said that I think there are better uses of my time than wading through 11,000 words (so far) of argument, much of it misinformed. The only change here that I view as significant is the clarification of the attribution requirement, which I like. Far too many of our contributors read the V3 requirement to mean attribution in a form that is so impractical for print media that it amounts to no license.
Much of what is said above about moral rights above is based on an incorrect premise -- the only release of moral rights is to ensure that the free license of the copyright is accomplished. The moral rights release is purely technical and will not affect anyone who truly wants to release the copyright irrevocably to anyone for any use anywhere as long as attribution and share alike is correctly done.      Jim . . . . Jameslwoodward (talk to me) 13:47, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

Hello all, +1 vote to "Please an example!" --Krauss (talk) 20:51, 29 October 2016 (UTC)


As long as Creative Commons 4.0 Protects the original creator as being the original creator of their works and creations. And is Internationally recognized not subject to Jurisdictions! Channel247 (talk) 12:42, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

"If it ain't broke don't fix it" – "Never change a running system"

Oppose Strong Oppose--Ciao--Bestoernesto (talk) 11:39, 30 October 2016 (UTC)

I agree with Bestoernesto. Runny systems shouldn't be changed.

No German license text

As long as I can't find an authorized German translation of this license I don't know what is exactly stated there. (Like the most Non-Native-English-Speaking-Editors I guess) I'm not able to full understand such a tight formal juridical English. Hence there is no German license text, I'm not longer able to contribute. As simple as that. --Stepro (talk) 22:22, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

That's realy true!--Ciao--Bestoernesto (talk) 11:43, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
CC itself notes that the Deed used by other version (3.0 or before) is unofficial, and the country derivative is also not the same to generic one). While CC is trying to compile an authentic (not porting) German CC4.0 translation, they stalled so far. -- 08:02, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

As a parasite of Wikipedia, i think it should be given the license because it has earned the most "reliant library" badge among the people worldwide. Furthermore Wikipedia should make strong constitution to prevent misuse of copyright articles by sharing them with a statutory warning. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 18:32, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

Reuse for commercial gain

The fact that (as I understand it) people are allowed to sell content that they have copied verbatim from Wikipedia for their own personal profit is a disgrace. Many casual contributors probably have no idea that this loophole exists. If one thing about the licensing needs fixing, this is surely it. 08:57, 20 October 2016 (UTC)

Unfortunately, many users have released their copyrightable content only on condition that it may not be distributed except under a license that permits this. We can't chnge the license in this way without getting aproval from literally every user who has contributed any significant piece of text to the wiki. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 19:42, 20 October 2016 (UTC)
I think it is pretty safe to assume that nobody actually wants their Wikipedia contributions to be taken and sold for profit by other people. I cannot imagine that there will be many protests from contributors if this is now forbidden, as it clearly should have been from the outset. 01:29, 21 October 2016 (UTC)
To be fair, there is a catch: If you sell Wikipedia content, you are doing so while allowing the buyer to re-distribute the text - without your knowledge or benifit. Thia makes it less likely that some one will use the content comercially. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 18:11, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

"It is pretty safe to assume that nobody actually wants their Wikipedia contributions to be taken and sold for profit by other people"

No, it's not safe to assume it. --NaBUru38 (talk) 20:52, 22 October 2016 (UTC)

Well, it is at least safe to assume that those people who, for reasons I cannot imagine, submit content to Wikipedia actually wanting someone else to take it for their own profit are outweighed by the thousands of people who devote their time and effort, in good faith, to improving Wikipedia, often, I would suggest, without any knowledge that this outrageous loophole exists, and certainly not condoning it. The rights and protections deserved by the latter group must take precedence. 22:44, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
I don't think that's true, either. Wikipedia's content has always been open to commercial use, and information about this 'loophole' has been linked from text above the "save changes" box for at least a decade. The mission talks of a free license, which includes the freedom to sell a product using that content. Without that option, you would not see Wikipedia content showing up on search engines, or Facebook, because these are commercial operations. This would ultimately makes the content less useful to society. Ask yourself: "do I lose anything just because others might gain?" And really, since anyone can do this, do you think they'd be able to extract much value beyond what they add on top? If you tried to sell a Print Wikipedia for $5,000,000, you'd be undercut by someone doing it for $500,000. GreenReaper (talk) 04:06, 23 October 2016 (UTC)
Also, there are many ways an author personally benefits by allowing commercial use. I believe a lot more people would be in favor of it if they knew them. Most, if not all, uses that we would consider undesirable are already prevented by the "share alike" clause; no huge evil company is going to want to re-appropriate your work. If you're contributing to a wiki, you probably want more works to be open. For example, if someone makes a book about butterflies and includes some photos you took, his whole book has to be open too. Now, if he/she wasn't allowed to sell copies of his/her book, it might have never existed, but, because it is allowed, you can now read and reuse a new work about what might be your favorite topic. Also, said book has to credit you in a way that other people can find you, augmenting your own curriculum, popularity, and giving you paid opportunities you would not have otherwise. If you are already using a share-alike license, you should allow commercial uses, you have nothing to lose and a lot to gain. --OscarAbraham (talk) 07:53, 23 October 2016 (UTC)
It's actually not correct that "if someone makes a book about butterflies and includes some photos you took, his whole book has to be open"; only those photographs need to be. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 03:04, 26 October 2016 (UTC)
The way I understand it, the whole book can be considered a derivative work when concerning copyright law. Thus, as a derivative work of a photograph with a share alike license, it has to be shared alike with the same open license. Am I not right? EDIT: Well, thinking about it, wouldn't it depend on the question of if the book is a mere collection of photos or if it makes some creative use of them? --OscarAbraham (talk) 13:38, 30 October 2016 (UTC)

@OscarAbraham: I think that GreenReaper is exactly right on the theory part of this question. It's surprisingly hard to distinguish commercial and non-commercial uses of copyrighted content and part of the world's knowledge being free is having it be free for any purpose (as long as people still get credit). With regard to the derivative works thing, well, first I'm going to shrug a bit. There isn't a single, obvious answer that all courts worldwide agree on as to the definition of a derivative work. A collage could be a derivative work, for example, though typically people are thinking of edits or additions to the actual work itself when they're talking about a derivative work. The legal analysis might look at how close together different parts of a work are, where I use "close together" in an abstract mental conception kind of way. So, to look at the butterfly example, a book about butterflies that uses one picture of a butterfly on one page probably is not a derivative work of the picture, it's just a copyrightable text that happens to use that picture. So the book could be copyrighted and sold without anyone being allowed to copy it for free, but the image would need to remain free to copy and reproduce. On the other hand, if one were to make a collage with bits and pieces of many butterfly pictures including lots of bits from the CC BY-SA butterfly, it's possible that the whole collage would be held to be a derivative work and would need to be licensed freely because it's not really possible in the collage case to pull out just the CC licensed bits separately. As I said though, I'm shrugging as I answer this, and speculating on the analysis, as I don't think there's one consistent way of figuring out this derivative work question. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 23:48, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

Good or Bad move for Wikimedia?

I never understood why colleges did not want to accept research from Wikipedia.

I very all information to the best of my resources and the info seems more than valid.

Can anyone give feedback on this. NickwilsonSB (talk) 07:15, 27 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi NickwilsonSB - I'm not sure how this relates to the upgrade to Creative Commons 4.0. That said, I'd recommend using the sources within the article as references rather than the article itself. Joe Sutherland (WMF) (talk) 00:15, 28 October 2016 (UTC)
What's the difference. When did the information change? TheSelectFew (talk)
@TheSelectFew: It's a matter of 'reliability'... Wikipedia is not a reliable source, but it's supposed to 'use' reliable sources. Wikipedia content is well-known to be sometimes biased, incomplete, or (in rare cases) a complete hoax. There is no peer review of Wikipedia articles before publication. Revent (talk) 06:51, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

A few issues

I assume we are going through with this because frankly using a different license to the rest of the free content world is a pain in the neck. That said there are a couple of issues with the license. The first is that the status the official translations is mentioned in the FAQ but not supported by the text of the license itself (unless I've missed something). That means that if the norwegian translation turns out to allow something the English version does not and someone does that thing under the terms of the English license I have a reasonable prospect of successfully suing them however the FAQ would suggest otherwise and the norwegian user has no obvious way of realising that the risk even exists.

I don't like the look of the BY-SA Compatible License stuff. Its got to much in common with creative common's history of gimmicks like the Developing Nations License. I don't entirely trust creative commons not to claim that the popular license of the week is BY-SA Compatible. It also creates the problem that in order to understand how the license works I now need to read the Free Art license 1.3 and GPLv3. Additionally given the scale we are now operating on I don't think we should be using the Definition of Free Cultural Works given its far from clear status. In general though this further shows how reliant the license is on supporting documents for explaining what will happen under certain conditions.

The term "3b3 You may not offer or impose any additional or different terms or conditions on, or apply any Effective Technological Measures to, Adapted Material that restrict exercise of the rights granted under the Adapter's License You apply." does I feel risk creating issues for less technical users. For example I doubt the average person cares about DVD encryption at this point but its still there. I'm also not sure how this would work with some of the features in say snapchat. Also how does this work with things like Crusader Kings II which uses wikipedia text but then sell their game on steam (which has DRM?).Geni (talk) 18:38, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

I think they both are very good points. The first one, about license compatibility has always bothered me in every license. It also means that the future protection of works that use this license is not only in the hands of CC authorities, but also the people behind compatible licenses; that's too dangerous IMO. About the second point you make, Steam does not force DRM on games, only supports it. Many games on Steam do not have any DRM and, if they have it, they can stop using it at any time. Yet, I think your preoccupation is still very valid; a good example is streaming services like Spotify, which do force DRM on authors. Still, I kind of understand why this was added to the license: Normally DRM wouldn't matter a lot because, sooner or latter, someone hacks it; but in recent years, in some countries, it has been made illegal to circumvent DRM. That makes a legal loophole to circumvent copyright licenses like CC-BY-SA (which is one of the most absurd paradoxes I've ever seen). --OscarAbraham (talk) 13:30, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
@OscarAbraham:@Geni: Let me see if I can address these points. First, while it's impossible to eliminate every possible issue with translations, CC has a really solid process for making official translations that ensures major problems will be caught and fixed before an official translation goes live. Second, as mentioned in our FAQ, the BY-SA part is there for a number of reasons. Partially historical, in that it's the only license we have the option of easily using now, and partially because we have it in the first place to support free culture values. Third, while DRM can present an issue, it's not an insurmountable one. Compatibility with this is determined by experts looking at different license terms and ensuring that they're basically the same. It's not a question of CC making a bad decision or forcing you to read every possible compatible license, rather it's that people who know the law really well have gone over these different licenses and determined, as a factual matter, that they work together without a problem. Lastly, using some Wikipedia text in a game like Crusader Kings doesn't mean that the whole game is CC licensed now, just the parts around the text. So the game can still be under DRM as long as they comply with the license when using the text and allow people to download or copy the text from the game (along with any modifications they make to it). -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 00:34, 2 November 2016 (UTC)

Translations and Unintended Interpretations/Consequences

I have several concerns, but one of the primary concerns is in the translation of the license into numerous different languages, each subject to their own nuances in interpretation. As an attorney personally, and as WMF legal should know well, lawyers can argue over statements as simple as "The light was green." even when the language, or different interpretations thereof, or translations of the statement, are not at issue. Who will be the final arbitor, and what will be the official language basis, of how a particular term or phrase is to be interpreted? Especially when a term or phrase can mean something different between two different translations of the same text. This seems to create the potential for more disputes, rather than promoting the free re-use of information. It makes far more sense to have the license kept in a single language, and make translations available for information and guidance purposes only. Then you get to the next question of, "Who is actually pushing for this change? and ... Why?" I don't see much that cannot be done under the current Creative Commons license that CCv4 will cure. Am I missing the main point?

--Drankinatty (talk) 06:55, 30 October 2016 (UTC)

@Drankinatty: It's true that there will always be interpretation issues in the law, but that happens whether there is one license in English or many licenses in different languages. Our thought is the translations are much more helpful than any minor harm caused by different interpretations. The courts of different countries can interpret the license differently even if it's all in English, but having the translations means that people around the world can have a much easier time understanding the license and therefore accessing all the works in the commons. As far as pushing for the change, we're initiating it because we think this license is better and we've had time to review the license since its release, do the legal analysis in the legal memo included with this discussion, and concluded that it would be an improvement to the projects overall, even if in practice it doesn't change too much about the actual way somebody goes about reusing an article. -Jrogers (WMF) (talk) 23:07, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

URGENT: clarification as to what will change is URGENTLY needed

URGENT: clarification as to what will change is URGENTLY needed here!! Until that's done, people don't even really know what they're voting for. --Elvey (talk) 09:04, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

@Elvey: See here. For most Wikipedia contributors, this will make absolutely no difference.... the biggest changes, really, are that the common practice on wikis, of 'attribution through linking', is now more explicitly allowed; that an author can now request that they 'not' be attributed in an adaptation that that they disapprove of; and that a licensee has a 30-day window to fix violations once they are notified. None of this will make the slightest difference to most Wikipedia contributors. Revent (talk) 07:25, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
The only 'practical' difference for a Wikipedia is that this license will require that a contributor to an 'old version' of a article will effectively be able to 'require' a later revdel to remove their attribution from the page history. Revent (talk) 07:28, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

CC-BY-NC-ND is the best

Back to the roots: CC-BY-NC-ND is the best for the Wikipedia! I don't like to work for our commercial sharks for free. --Alchemist-hp (talk) 20:44, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

  • If we apply a NoDerivs license to wiki content, we wouldn't be able to create derivative works, i.e. edit pages. Don't think it's gonna happen, but it would certainly cut down on some of the discussion on this page! BrentLaabs (talk) 01:46, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
    • So-called "yes", and we can just ©2000-2017 Wikimedia Foundation, because it's most commonly used on Internet, isn't that? --Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 11:27, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
      • Additional the license CC-BY-SA-NC or CC-BY-NC is also possible. --Alchemist-hp (talk) 15:08, 9 October 2016 (UTC)
        • I like NC, but I feel that if someone makes it derivative or provides commentary/review about it they should be able to sell the finished product in like in Fair Use.--Frederika Eilers (talk) 23:43, 12 October 2016 (UTC)
        • It is not feasible because existing contributions can only be re-licensed under a compatible license; CC-BY-NC is not CC-BY-compatible because it does not preserve the rights granted in the original license (to commercially reuse the work). GreenReaper (talk) 04:43, 23 October 2016 (UTC)
I find it very unfortunate that in the development of the CC 4 licenses these miserable NC and ND variants have been kept. -- smial (talk) 08:08, 13 October 2016 (UTC)
  • With a non-commercial licence, a person would not be allowed read an article aloud and publish it on a commercial video website. --NaBUru38 (talk) 20:39, 22 October 2016 (UTC)
  • I don't like to work for free when other people are allowed to earn money from this work, what, in my ideas, looks like slavery. I would prefer CC-BY-NC-ND. --Ambre Troizat (talk) 19:11, 31 October 2016 (UTC)
  • So you are OK working for free as long as it can't be used by others? 2601:602:C303:C670:A87D:A958:6379:B134 08:18, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
  • Wikipedia has been one of the world's most important web projects for a while. Why can't we create a license of our own, one that fits our needs? We would get access to a lot more material if we'd allow commercial use only in an encyclopaedic context. We don't need to be a source for poster shops and newspapers. We don't need to ruin professional photographers if all we want to do is create an encyclopaedia. --Sitacuisses (talk) 13:53, 5 November 2016 (UTC)

Consolidate objections (!) and add standard explanations

I am supporting, and I think that it is easier to support... So, it is important to listen the opposition votes... How to listen them?

  1. consolidating the most frequent objections in the #Opposition list.
  2. explaining (in simple and "standard"/consolidated terms) and perhaps showing didatic examples for each relevant objection, to everybody (not only license-experts) understand the point.

--Krauss (talk) 21:01, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

Consolidating objections

Consolidating objections of the #Opposition list, the most frequent topics of objections:

  1. Upgrade problem: not see a significant "reason for the upgrade", "Don't fix what's not broken", "Stay with 3.0", "Why changing when what we have is enough", etc.
  2. Waiver of moral rights: CC-BY-SA-v4's waiving of moral, personality, and privacy rights, the moral rights as defined by the Berne Convention. "I do not want to signoff my moral rights", etc.
  3. Waiving database rights: CC-BY-SA-v4's waiving of of sui generis database rights
  4. ... any other "frequent"? ... please add here ...

Note: other comments are about the old choice of CC-BY-SA (instead CC-BY or CC0), so it is not the scope of the main discussion (perhapes need separate a plebiscite or referendum about that). -- Krauss 21:24, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

this is wrong; CC BY-SA 4.0 doesn't waive sui generis database rights, the proposed amendment to wikimedia terms of use do: Terms_of_use/Creative_Commons_4.0/Diff
the views from opposition are:
3. upgrading and waiving sui generis database rights should be decided separately.
3.1. specifically, i support the former and oppose the latter. 08:41, 4 November 2016 (UTC)
(please use your login) Unfortunately, as exposed in the note above, we need focus in a formal process, discussing and voting one topic at a time ... Perhapes need separate a plebiscite or referendum about "change BY-SA to other". --Krauss (talk) 20:25, 5 November 2016 (UTC)


Some concepts are not consensus, but have some consensual explanation and fundamentals:

  • Waiver of moral rights: may be split in three parts...
    1. Attribution, which is preserved by CC-BY-SA,
    2. the right to anonymous or pseudonymous publication, also explicitly preserved, and
    3. the right to "the integrity of the work", which is incompatible with the ability to create derivative works.
    The point in objection is only item 3, "integrity". Wikipedia, as the product of collaborative editing, in inherently incompatible with that last 'moral right' (the integrity)... your contributions can be modified by later editors. Material released under CC-BY-SA-3.0 'implicitly' waives that last moral right, it's just more explicit in the newer license.
  • Waiving database rights: ... upgrading and waiving perhaps be decided separately ...?


@Krauss: "Moral rights", themselves, are in three parts... 1) Attribution, which is preserved by CC-BY-SA, 2) the right to anonymous or pseudonymous publication, also explicitly preserved, and 3) the right to 'the integrity of the work', which is incompatible with the ability to create derivative works. Wikipedia, as the product of collaborative editing, in inherently incompatible with that last 'moral right'... your contributions can be modified by later editors. Material released under CC-BY-SA-3.0 'implicitly' waives that last moral right, it's just more explicit in the newer license.
That rather goes to the first objection as well... most of the changes to the newer license are to simply adapt the 'intention' of the older license to the changing legal situation in various countries... it's simply more explicit about what was always presumably intended. Under 3.0, a large number of 'national' versions existed, that were (in the technical details) somewhat incompatible... the newer license compiles those 'points' of national difference into a single document.
As far as 'database rights', that's rather a moot point, as the WMF (which operates under US law) is not legally obligated to honor that right, since US case law specifically disallows it's existence... it applies to large 'compilations' of individually un-copyrightable facts, and such large data imports would (in the modern era) be to wikidata anyhow... the licensing of wikidata is unaffected by this. Revent (talk) 07:11, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
In the US Moral Rights rarely ever hold up in court for anything other than limited runs of 'fine art' so as that is where wikipeadia operates from waving it doesn't really change anything. 2601:602:C303:C670:A87D:A958:6379:B134 08:05, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
Hi @Revent:, thanks a lot. I took the liberty of adapt and reuse your words to the "Explanations" subsection. Please edit, you or anybody that want to help. --Krauss (talk) 12:16, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

Waiving the Sui Generis Database Rights

Dear @LMixter (WMF): thank you for your answer in the (already archived) Effect on Wikidata section. The license change not only CC-BY-SA 3.0 to CC-BY-SA 4.0, but there will be an extra waiver about the sui generis database rights. My problem is with the waiver clause (“Where you own Sui Generis Database Rights covered by CC BY-SA 4.0, you waive these rights. As an example, this means facts you contribute to the projects may be reused freely without attribution.”), that it makes practically impossible the cooperation with most of the data owners in my country. In Hungary (and as I know, in most countries in the EU) Sui Generis Database Rights interpreted strictly: almost everything is covered by these rights and we need a permission to use these contents or any parts of them (according to the local legislation). Some owner are open to give a permission, but only a very few publish them under free license. I spent my last years with many-many discussions with GLAM institutes or with governmental entities, and in some smaller, pilot cases we (Wikimedia Hungary) were able to sign a contract with a promise: we will attribute the (original) owner and the source of the data: this was the price to import them to Wikipedia. If we will use these data without attribution or we require at the future contracts that they have to waive all their rights, they will answer simply NO, and all efforts building up good relations and pilot projects were waste of time. Samat (talk) 20:38, 26 October 2016 (UTC)

It is mostly just bringing the license in line with how it already works in the US, which is where WMF operates out of and the laws that they follow, and since there are no Sui Generis Database Rights in the US it means that once the data is transfered to US jurisdiction the rights are null anyway. 2601:602:C303:C670:A87D:A958:6379:B134 08:14, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
Hi Samat, I can see how this is difficult to negotiate, so thanks for raising the example. I wanted to clarify two points about database protection. First, while database protection may cover some works that are ineligible for copyright, there are still some limits to what counts as a database. Database protection covers works where there has been some substantial investment in creating the database. Second, database rights cover using (utilizing or extracting) all (or a substantial portion) of a database, so it's possible to use a non-substantial portion of the database without permission. Terms like "substantial" create some ambiguity around what is protected under database rules. This is especially true for an international project where some users are in jurisdictions where facts are free for the public to use. If Hungarian GLAM institutions expect that their factual data will be protected by CC BY-SA, they may not be pleased if other users believe that their database contains facts that may be released under CC0. The goal of the waiver in the Terms of Use is to make the standard more clear and consistent for people. You could still come up with a solution to provide attribution generously to partners (through a template on the talk page, for example). The best solution is to find common ground outside of the pure legal terms. Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 00:13, 2 November 2016 (UTC)
Dear Stephen LaPorte (WMF), thank you for your informative and helpful answer. I agree with it and of course I understand the goal of the waiver. But the situation is not easy: in the last years we had many missed possibilities because of this problem, for example we couldn't join to Wiki Loves Monuments, because the list of the protected objects is not even public, we couldn't join to Wiki Loves Earth or Wiki Loves Public Art, where the lists are already public, but we didn't get permission to use them under free licences, and these are only the well-known examples. I would like to underline (and partly answer to the anon above) that we can be successful locally only if we try to cooperate with partners with good faith and don't try to trick them (our servers are in the US, so we could use the database as soon it is public): it can happen only once, and then we won't be able to find anybody in the next decade who would like to work with us. (Side note with an already different topic: WMF would be safe in this case under US law, but individual editors can be sued according to EU law.) Samat (talk) 21:44, 4 November 2016 (UTC)
Stephen LaPorte (WMF), you said, The best solution is to find common ground outside of the pure legal terms. That is false, and completely against the point of Creative Commons licenses. The primary aim of CC licenses is to avoid the need to negotiate common ground between licensors and licensees, and thereby eliminate the time-consuming, unstandardised step of a (potential) licensee having to seek permission from a (potential) licensor before using the latter's work. Larry Lessig was very clear about this at Wikimania 2006. Please reconsider your statement, and do not dilute the excellent progress that CC has brought about. If a (potential) licensee isn't satisfied with the terms of any particular CC license that the licensor has used, then they should simply not use the licensed work, rather than hassling the licensor. Zazpot (talk) 16:19, 8 November 2016 (UTC)


I know that this consultation is more about the upgrade from CC 3.0 to 4.0, but I am wondering why do we still keep double license with GFDL for new content? It would be an easy moment to remove this section of the Terms of use in the frame of the upgrade. In my understanding if I have permission to use a content under CC-BY-SA 3.0, I cannot use it in Wikipedia, because I have to have CC-BY-SA 3.0 AND GFDL. Samat (talk) 20:58, 26 October 2016 (UTC) the latest

Wikilegal should respond to this, but 'till they do: I think you CAN do that. (What you can't do is use content solely recently licensed under the latest GFDL.) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Elvey (talk) 08:59, 31 October 2016
@Samat: It's not a matter of 'both'... when material is available under more than one license, the reuser can choose. "Old" Wikipedia content is under both licenses (per the original license, and the transitional version of the GFDL), but anything recent is solely under CC-BY-SA-3.0. When material is added to Wikipedia, now, it's only required to be under CC-BY-SA-3.0... that's what you agree to when you add it, not the GFDL. The mention of the older license is just to make it clear that some old content is available under the GFDL as well, but the GFDL included an 'and later versions' provision that allowed all GFDL content on Wikipedia to be later dual-licensed, due to a revision of the GFDL that said so.
Material that is 'solely' under CC-BY-SA-3.0 can be added to Wikipedia, as 'current versions' are only guaranteed to be under that license... it's only 'old versions' that might also be under the GFDL. Revent (talk) 06:48, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
Hi Samat, under the 2009 license migration from GFDL to CC BY-SA 3.0, you are allowed to import content from third parties that is solely under CC BY-SA 3.0. We will continue to keep the GFDL dual license, and you will continue to be able to reuse new content under the CC terms if you choose. If you wish to take newer content from Wikipedia under the terms of the GFDL, it may be practical to comply with both CC BY-SA and GFDL at the same time. Thank you for the question! Stephen LaPorte (WMF) (talk) 23:26, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for both of your answer. I realized that the question was my misunderstanding/misreading of the Terms of use. I remembered from 2009 that it is possible to import solely CC-BY-SA content to the projects, but in "Text to which you hold the copyright" section I read that it will be double licensed and re-users can choose between the licences; in fact, the section "Importing text" is relevant here. But still: finding out that an article or a particular part of it is under GFLD or not is not easy at all. Samat (talk) 22:13, 4 November 2016 (UTC)
Right, so, to nitpick: What Revent said is not quite true: On every wikipedia edit page "By saving changes, you agree to the Terms of Use, and you irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 3.0 License and the GFDL." So not always true: "When material is added to Wikipedia, now, it's only required to be under CC-BY-SA-3.0". (Not to mention the fair use exception; that material generally isn't CC-licensed either!) But Revent is right, if it's someone else's content, you're allowed, per Stephen's link above, to submit it if it's CC only - it's not "your contribution". Gotchas like this drive home the need for the prep work I've been pushing for. I just noticed that the " You may import any text from other sources that is available under the CC-BY-SA license, even if it is not available under the GNU Free Documentation License" doesn't seem to exist on wikipedia or here anymore; the wording much have changed, w:Wikipedia:Copyrights has similar wording: "If you want to import text that you have found elsewhere or that you have co-authored with others, you can only do so if it is available under terms that are compatible with the CC BY-SA license." Stephen LaPorte (WMF), is the plan to change the text on every wikipedia edit page to "By saving changes, you agree to the Terms of Use, and you irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 4.0 License and the GFDL." That is just s/3.0/4.0/ ?--Elvey (talk) 05:16, 8 November 2016 (UTC)
@Elvey: I actually forgot that the actual 'edit' page text says 'CC-BY-SA and GFDL'... I'm just used to seeing the "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply." in the page footer... I rather have a tendency, however, to assume that nobody would 'choose' the GFDL if a CC license is available, since complying with the GFDL is awkward, and we could really choose to simply forget that any text was 'ever' under that license, as all the originally 'GDFL-only' text is now dual licensed.
However it is worth pointing out that the CC-BY-SA-3.0 license includes an 'and future versions of the license' clause, just like the GFDL does. It's in 4(b)(ii). This means that ANY Wikipedia text can already, as things stand, be used under a CC-BY-SA-4.0 license. It also means that we could just migrate to using only that license, if desired, as all 3.0 material is also 4.0 (and 5.0, and so forth). Revent (talk) 05:36, 8 November 2016 (UTC)
Just as a further note, though... at least on English Wikipedia, content that is 'imported' only under CC-BY-SA (and not GFDL) is supposed to be clearly marked. Since it's an obscure point, and purely CC-BY-SA material is 'acceptable', I have no doubt there are large amounts of imported material that is not truly under the GFDL. Revent (talk) 05:39, 8 November 2016 (UTC)