Help:Copyrights

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For information on database rights and copyright see Wikidata:Open data publishing


Wikidata offers several properties and qualifiers for storing copyright information, this page's goal is to explain how to use them. Many laws might restrict the use of various works and materials in addition to copyrights, for example laws related to trademarks, patents, personality rights, authors' moral rights, etc. This page covers only copyrights.

The aim of copyright data model is to allow works to have multiple copyright statuses for different jurisdictions (use applies to jurisdiction (P1001) qualifier), based on different principles (use determination method (P459) qualifier) and time periods (use start time (P580)/end time (P582) qualifiers). That is accomplished by using copyright status (P6216) as an anchor property with additional qualifiers bundled within. An example might look as follows:

copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 100 years pma or shorter
determination method 100 years after author's death
▼ 0 reference
+ add reference


+ add value

Qualifiers for different types of work[edit]

Property copyright status (P6216) in great majority of cases will take only two values:

Qualifiers for copyright status (P6216) differ for copyrighted and public domain works. Whereas public domain works need qualifiers that help confirm the public domain status of the work, the copyrighted works need qualifiers that help determine the copyright holders and future public domain date.

Public Domain Works[edit]

Use copyright status (P6216) public domain (Q19652) with following qualifiers

Qualifier Possible values Explanation
determination method (P459) (required) See example items below. justification why work is in Public Domain.
applies to jurisdiction (P1001) (required) See example items below. stating a country or countries, where copyright applies, with default being worldwide.
laws applied (P3014) Items: justification why work is in Public Domain linking it to specific law. In many cases laws applied (P3014) should be a property of items linked through determination method (P459) property.
start time (P580)
end time (P582)
Dates start and end dates when statement is true. end time (P582) should not be used except for rare cases where PD works become copyrighted again.

Copyrighted works[edit]

Works with copyright status (P6216) copyrighted (Q50423863) will fall into two broad categories: works released under a license, like one of Creative Commons licenses, and works for which All Rights Reserved is stated or assumed. Copyrighted works should use the following qualifiers

Qualifier Possible values Explanation
determination method (P459) (required) See example items below. How do we know the work is still copyrighted?
applies to jurisdiction (P1001) See example items below. Country or list of countries, where copyright applies.
copyright license (P275) See example items below. Examples: GPLv2, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International.
public domain date (P3893) Date When will the copyright expire and work fall into Public Domain?
start time (P580)
end time (P582)
Dates Start and end dates when statement is true. start time (P580) should not be used except for rare cases where PD works become copyrighted again. end time (P582) should be used after work falls into public domain and statement is no longer true.
copyright holder (P3931) Items, person/organisation, untraceable copyright owner (Q60711924) for orphan works copyright holder (P3931) is meant to store the copyright owner or the copyright representative of the work if known. Copyright ownership can be uncertain as copyright can be sold or transfered. The copyright owner can be a person, a collective right organisation, fund, or abstract like heirs (Q29902355). The copyright owner or representative of an author might be mentioned if known for the entry of that person with copyright representative (P6275).
Wikimedia OTRS ticket number (P6305) 16 digit number Identifier linking file with email exchange stored in OTRS database confirming the validity of the license.

Additional allowed qualifiers[edit]

Additional qualifiers that are useful for both public domain works and copyrighted works:

Qualifier Possible values Explanation
author (P50)
creator (P170)
Items specified as qualifier for the copyright statement if there are multiple authors/creators and we are tracking copyrights of each one separately.
applies to part (P518) Items: allow us to specify copyrights of works current work was derived from, objects in the photograph, sound and video part of a movie, composer and performers, etc.
comment (DEPRECATED) (P2315) Free text Free text explanation of whatever can not be explained through other means. Should not be used much.
statement disputed by (P1310)
statement supported by (P3680)
Items
sourcing circumstances (P1480) disputed (Q18912752)

Helper items[edit]

Items linked through applies to jurisdiction (P1001) qualifier[edit]

The property applies to jurisdiction (P1001), used as a qualifier of copyright statement should link to either:

  • Lists of countries with copyright terms based on authors' deaths (post mortem auctoris or pma)[1]:

Items linked through determination method (P459) qualifier[edit]

See list at Help:Copyrights/Copyright determination method

Property determination method (P459) is used to express how do we know work is in public domain or still copyrighted. Each jurisdiction has unique copyright laws, but they follow broad trends except for contemporary works. Differences between jurisdictions are often most visible in how they treat older works and for example United States law is so complicated it has it's own section below. You can see what determination method (P459) properties are currently in use on Wikidata if you use this SPARQL query.

copyright determination method (Q61005213) Based on authors' deaths (post mortem auctoris or pma)[1]:

Based on publication date:

Government works:

Other:

Works in the US[edit]

US copyrights are explained at Wikidata:Hirtle chart. You can see what determination method (P459) properties are currently in use on Wikidata if you use this SPARQL query.

The below helper items are created specifically for categories of works that are in the public domain based on either creation date or publication date.

Based on creation date[edit]

Based on publication date[2][edit]

until 1924

between 1924-1963

between 1964-1977

Based on creation date[2][edit]

Other[edit]

Items linked through copyright license (P275) qualifier[edit]

All the items linked through copyright license (P275) property should be of they type (or sub-type):

In case of public license (Q7257461) items, ideally they will come with the following properties :

Below is a list of some standard licenses. The list was generated with this SPARQL query.

Creative Commons Licenses[edit]

Short list of Creative Commons Licenses
License associated template
CC0 (Q6938433) Template:Cc-zero (Q5271108)
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (Q20007257) Template:Cc-by-4.0 (Q15243503)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (Q18199165) Template:Cc-by-sa-4.0 (Q15243492)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 4.0 International (Q36795408) Template:Cc-by-nd-4.0 (Q26089788)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (Q34179348) Template:Cc-by-nc-4.0 (Q15924707)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International (Q24082749) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-4.0 (Q26089790)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (Q42553662) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-4.0 (Q26074637)
Full list of Creative Commons Licenses
License associated template
Creative Commons Attribution
Creative Commons Attribution 1.0 Generic (Q30942811) Template:Cc-by-1.0 (Q6022067)
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (Q19125117) Template:Cc-by-2.0 (Q5888213)
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 South Korea (Q44282633) Template:Cc-by-2.0-kr (Q26108158)
Creative Commons Attribution 2.1 Japan (Q26116436) Template:Cc-by-2.1-jp (Q42551238)
Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Unported (Q18810333) Template:Cc-by-2.5 (Q5641179)
Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Sweden (Q27940776) Template:Cc-by-2.5-se (Q47461721)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (Q14947546) Template:Cc-by-3.0 (Q5901616)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Germany (Q62619894) Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Germany (Q62619894)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia (Q52555753) Template:Cc-by-3.0-au (Q6866800)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Netherlands (Q53859967) Template:Cc-by-3.0-nl (Q60895873)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States (Q18810143) Template:Cc-by-3.0-us (Q6866807)
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (Q20007257) Template:Cc-by-4.0 (Q15243503)
Creative Commons Attribution Intergovernmental Organizations licence 3.0 (Q26259495) Template:Cc-by-3.0-igo (Q47461707)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 1.0 Generic (Q47001652) Template:Cc-by-sa-1.0 (Q6480992)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (Q19068220) Template:Cc-by-sa-2.0 (Q6058246)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 South Korea (Q44282641) Template:Cc-by-sa-2.0-kr (Q15061613)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada (Q24331618) Template:Cc-by-sa-2.5-ca (Q6866841)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Generic (Q19113751) Template:Cc-by-sa-2.5 (Q5831909)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Netherlands (Q18199175) Template:Cc-by-sa-2.5-nl (Q6866858)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 Sweden (Q15914252)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (Q14946043) Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0 (Q5614379)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Germany (Q42716613) Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0-de (Q6866872)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 IGO (Q56292840) Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0-igo (Q60920501)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Netherlands (Q18195572) Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0-nl (Q60920048)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States (Q18810341) Template:Cc-by-sa-3.0-us (Q60920252)
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (Q18199165) Template:Cc-by-sa-4.0 (Q15243492)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 1.0 Generic (Q47008966) Template:Cc-by-nd-1.0 (Q26087352)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (Q35254645) Template:Cc-by-nd-2.0 (Q26087340)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.5 Generic (Q18810338) Template:Cc-by-nd-2.5 (Q26044447)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported (Q18810160) Template:Cc-by-nd-3.0 (Q26015726)
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 4.0 International (Q36795408) Template:Cc-by-nd-4.0 (Q26089788)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 1.0 Generic (Q44283370) Template:Cc-by-nc-1.0 (Q26087349)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (Q44128984) Template:Cc-by-nc-2.0 (Q26044341)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 Generic (Q19113746) Template:Cc-by-nc-2.5 (Q26001706)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported (Q18810331) Template:Cc-by-nc-3.0 (Q8858704)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (Q34179348) Template:Cc-by-nc-4.0 (Q15924707)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 1.0 Generic (Q47008926) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-1.0 (Q26086887)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (Q47008927) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-2.0 (Q26001456)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Generic (Q19068204) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-2.5 (Q26044454)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported (Q19125045) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-3.0 (Q26015733)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported (Q19328005)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International (Q24082749) Template:Cc-by-nc-nd-4.0 (Q26089790)
Creative Commons Attribution–NonCommercial-ShareAlike
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 1.0 Generic (Q47008954) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-1.0 (Q26087347)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (Q28050835) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-2.0 (Q23497871)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Generic (Q19068212) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-2.5 (Q14408375)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (Q15643954) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-3.0 (Q19849272)
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (Q42553662) Template:Cc-by-nc-sa-4.0 (Q26074637)

Free Software Foundation Licenses[edit]

Short list of Free Software Foundation Licenses
License associated template
GNU Free Documentation License, version 1.3 or later (Q27019786) Template:GFDL-1.3+ (Q60993963)
GNU General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27016754) Template:GPLv3+ (Q25970720)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27016762) Template:LGPLv3+ (Q50932481)
GNU Affero General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27020062) Template:AGPL v3.0+ (Q50932455)
Full list of Free Software Foundation Licenses
License associated template
GNU Free Documentation License
GNU Free Documentation License, version 1.1 (Q26921685)
GNU Free Documentation License, version 1.2 (Q26921686) Template:GFDL-1.2 (Q6355095)
GNU Free Documentation License, version 1.3 (Q26921691) Template:GFDL-1.3-only (Q60993619)
GNU Free Documentation License, version 1.3 or later (Q27019786) Template:GFDL-1.3+ (Q60993963)
GNU General Public License
GNU General Public License, version 1.0 (Q10513452)
GNU General Public License, version 1.0 or later (Q27016750)
GNU General Public License, version 2.0 (Q10513450) Template:GPLv2 only (Q15715142)
GNU General Public License, version 2.0 or later (Q27016752) Template:GPLv2+ (Q6809928)
GNU General Public License, version 3.0 (Q10513445) Template:GPLv3 only (Q60907375)
GNU General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27016754) Template:GPLv3+ (Q25970720)
GNU Lesser General Public License
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 2.0 (Q23035974)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 2.0 or later (Q27016756)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 2.1 (Q18534390)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 2.1 or later (Q27016757) Template:LGPLv2.1+ (Q6867532)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 3.0 (Q18534393) Template:LGPLv3 only (Q60997871)
GNU Lesser General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27016762) Template:LGPLv3+ (Q50932481)
GNU Affero General Public License
Affero General Public License, version 1.0 (Q27017230)
Affero General Public License, version 1.0 or later (Q54571707)
Affero General Public License, version 2.0 (Q54365943)
GNU Affero General Public License, version 3.0 (Q27017232)
GNU Affero General Public License, version 3.0 or later (Q27020062) Template:AGPL v3.0+ (Q50932455)


Other Licenses[edit]

Short list of Other Licenses
License associated template
Adaptive Public License (Q4680711) Template:APL (Q51433063)
Apache Software License, Version 2.0 (Q13785927) Template:Apache-2.0 (Q46044420)
Apple Public Source License (Q621330) Template:APSL (Q51433048)
Artistic License 2.0 (Q14624826) Template:Artistic-2 (Q51432971)
3-clause BSD License (Q18491847) Template:BSD (Q6595879)
Beerware (Q10249) Template:Beerware (Q50932511)
CeCILL (Q1052189) Template:CeCILL (Q60997839)
Free Art License (Q152332) Template:FAL (Q5912469)
MIT license (Q334661) Template:MIT (Q8117901)
Mozilla Public License, version 2.0 (Q25428413) Template:MPL2 (Q61013691)
Open Database License (Q1224853) Template:ODbL (Q55669982)
Open Government Data License (Q47001673) Template:OGDL (Q29650284)
WTFPL (Q152481) Template:WTFPL v2 (Q50932405)
Full list of Othern Licenses
License associated template
AROS Public License (Q4653881)
Academic Free License (Q337279)
Affero General Public License (Q28130012)
Against DRM license (Q1905513)
Aladdin Free Public License (Q979794)
Angband licence (Q26701938)
Apache License (Q616526)
Apache Software License, Version 1.0 (Q26897902)
Apache Software License, Version 1.1 (Q17817999)
Apache Software License, Version 2.0 (Q13785927) Template:Apache-2.0 (Q46044420)
Apple Public Source License (Q621330) Template:APSL (Q51433048)
Artistic License 1.0 (Q14624823) Template:Artistic (Q51432997)
Artistic License 2.0 (Q14624826) Template:Artistic-2 (Q51432971)
Attribution Assurance License (Q38364310)
BSD licenses (Q191307)
1-clause BSD License (Q19292556)
2-clause BSD license (Q18517294)
3-clause BSD License (Q18491847) Template:BSD (Q6595879)
4-clause BSD license (Q21503790)
Beerware (Q10249) Template:Beerware (Q50932511)
BitTorrent Open Source License (Q4918693)
Boost Software License (Q2353141)
CDDL-1.1 (Q26996804)
CERN Open Hardware Licence (Q1023365)
Carnegie Mellon University License (Q2939745)
CeCILL (Q1052189) Template:CeCILL (Q60997839)
Client access license (Q1100998)
Code Project Open License (Q5140041)
Common Development and Distribution License version 1.0 (Q26996811) Template:CDDL v1.0 (Q51434104)
Common Public Attribution License (Q1116195)
Common Public License (Q2477807)
Copyheart (Q5169203)
Cryptix General License (Q5190781)
Data licence Germany - Zero - Version 2.0 (Q56064789)
Design Science License (Q2352806)
Dominion Rules Licence (Q5291073)
EPICS Open License (Q27096218)
Eclipse Distribution License (Q26245522)
Eclipse Public License (Q1281977)
Eiffel Forum License (Q17011832)
Erlang Public License (Q3731857)
European Union Public Licence (Q1376919)
Expat license (Q18526198)
Fair License (Q22682017)
Flora License (Q5460320)
Frameworx License (Q5477987)
Fraunhofer FDK AAC Codec Library for Android license (Q47524122)
Free Art License (Q152332) Template:FAL (Q5912469)
BSD Zero Clause License (Q48271011)
FreeBSD Documentation License (Q2033808)
GNAT Modified General Public License (Q1486114)
German Free Software License (Q5551105)
Giftware (Q10289473)
Hacktivismo Enhanced-Source Software License Agreement (Q5637395)
Historical Permission Notice and Disclaimer (Q5773924)
Honest Public License (Q3139999)
IBM Public License (Q288745)
ISC license (Q386474)
ImageMagick License (Q27676327)
Intel Open Source License (Q6043507)
Interbase Public License (Q3153096)
Italian Open Data License (Q16566743)
Italian Open Data License 1.0 (Q26805816)
Italian Open Data License 2.0 (Q26805818)
Jabber Open Source License (Q1149006)
JasPer License Version 2.0 (Q47524112)
Java Research License (Q6165015)
LaTeX Project Public License (Q1050635) Template:LaTeX (Q60997900)
Libpng License (Q6542418)
Lucent Public License (Q6696468)
MIT license (Q334661) Template:MIT (Q8117901)
MPICH2 license (Q17070027)
Mozilla Public License, version 1.0 (Q26737738)
Mozilla Public License, version 1.1 (Q26737735) Template:MPL 1.1 (Q14401238)
Mozilla Public License, version 2.0 (Q25428413) Template:MPL2 (Q61013691)
Matplotlib license (Q30222888)
Microsoft Imagine (Q909738)
Microsoft Public License (Q15477153)
Microsoft Reciprocal License (Q1772828)
MirOS Licence (Q1951343)
NASA Open Source Agreement (Q6952418)
Nethack General Public License (Q20764732)
Netscape Public License (Q2306611)
Non-Commercial Government Licence 2.0 (Q58337120)
Norwegian Licence for Open Government Data (Q18632926)
Open Audio License (Q627693)
Open Content License (Q4398755)
Open Data Commons (Q2025635)
Open Data Commons Attribution License (Q30940585)
Open Database License (Q1224853) Template:ODbL (Q55669982)
Open Directory License (Q4045888)
Open Game License (Q1752744)
Open Government Data License (Q47001673) Template:OGDL (Q29650284)
Open Government Licence (Q17016921)
Open Government Licence - Canada (Q56419952)
Open License (Q3238028)
Open Publication License (Q1412537)
Open Software License (Q777520)
Open Web Foundation Agreement, Version 0.9 (Q28554579)
OpenLDAP Public License Version 2.8 (Q25273268)
PHP License (Q376841)
PostgreSQL License (Q18563589)
Public Documentation License (Q492916)
Public Domain Dedication and License v1.0 (Q24273512)
Python License (Q5975028)
Python Software Foundation License (Q2600299)
Q Public License (Q1396282)
RealNetworks Public Source License (Q7300815)
Reciprocal Public License (Q7302458)
Ricoh Source Code Public License (Q7332330)
Ruby License (Q3066722)
SIL Open Font License (Q1150837)
SLUC (Q7391010)
SSLeay (Q20972134)
Server Side Public License (Q58531884)
Simple Public License (Q38351460)
Simputer General Public License (Q7521185)
Sleepycat License (Q2294050)
SugarCRM Public License (Q3976707)
Sun Community Source License (Q7638252)
Sun Industry Standards Source License (Q635577)
Sun Public License (Q648252)
Sybase Open Watcom Public License (Q7659488)
University of Illinois/NCSA Open Source License (Q2495855)
Unlicense (Q21659044)
Vim license (Q43338605)
Vovida Software License Version 1.0 (Q38349857)
W3C Software Notice and License (Q3564577)
WTFPL (Q152481) Template:WTFPL v2 (Q50932405)
X.Net, Inc. License (Q38346089)
XCore Open Source License (Q8041726)
Yahoo! Public License (Q16948289)
Zope Public License (Q3780982)
curl license (Q33042394)
doujin-mark (Q17229293)
eCos-2.0 (Q26904555)
freemium (Q1444631)
gSOAP Public License (Q3756289)
open source license (Q1156659)
volume licensing (Q4016359)
wxWindows Library License (Q38347878)
zlib License (Q207243)

Properties relevant to copyrights[edit]

Those might relate to the same item, but are not qualifiers of copyright status (P6216).

Legal geographical aspects[edit]

Legal date aspects[edit]

Legal authorship aspects[edit]

The following creator properties include possible copyright owners in copyright laws:

see also modeling Commons discussion on authorship properies

Relevant copyright properties on authors[edit]

RightsStatements[edit]

RightsStatements.org is an international effort among major cultural heritage institutions to create a global standard for rights statements for works. It has already been implemented by major repositories such as Europeana and DPLA, and many others. A work might be assigned one of a dozen possible statements, which can be stored on Wikidata using RightsStatement status according to source website (P6426) property.

As discussed and agreed during the Property Proposal, this property may ONLY be applied to Items about copyrightable works for which the organisation that owns the original work has itself placed one of the official RightsStatement.org labels in the metadata.


As of the date of approval of this Property there are 12 such Statements. Furthermore, only some of those 12 Statements are applicable to be modeled in Wikidata and Wikimedia Commons due to the policies of those projects.

The table below indicates which of the RightsStatements.org statements can be applied to the works' Wikidata item (if the above criteria is met) or Structured Data on Commons. The table is partially based on RightsStatement.org blog post clarifying the scope of each statement.

Icon Meaning
Wikidata-logo S.svg May be used on a Wikidata item
Commons logo.svg May be used within Wikimedia Commons Structured Data information and the file very likely meets Commons Licensing policy
Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg May be used within Wikimedia Commons Structured Data information; however, the file will have to be individually evaluated to determine if it meets Commons Licensing policy
RS.org Statement + QID Statement refers to:

the original work or
it's digital reproduction

Permitted to be used on:

Wikidata and/or
Commons

In Copyright (Q47530729) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg
In Copyright - EU Orphan Work (Q47530688) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg
In Copyright - Rights-holder(s) Unlocatable or Unidentifiable (Q47530802) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg
No Copyright - United States (Q47530911) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg+ Commons logo.svg
No Known Copyright (Q47530955) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg+ Commons logo.svg
Copyright Not Evaluated (Q47530926) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg+ Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg
Copyright Undetermined (Q47530946) original + reproduction Wikidata-logo S.svg+ Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg
No Copyright - Contractual Restrictions (Q47530853) reproduction Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg
No Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Only (Q47530884) reproduction Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg
No Copyright - Other Known Legal Restrictions (Q47530902) reproduction Commons logo.svgDYK questionmark icon.svg
In Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Permitted (Q47530780) reproduction
In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted (Q47530757) reproduction

Examples[edit]

item copyright statement Explanation
Paul Gauguin 126.jpg
Woman of the Mango (Q18357854)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 100 years pma or shorter
determination method 100 years after author's death
▼ 0 reference
+ add reference


+ add value
Copyrights have expired 100 years after author's death. Woman of the Mango (Q18357854), is a painting by Paul Gauguin (Q37693) who died in 1903, or more than 100 years ago. Such work would be in public domain in all the countries where copyright expires some number of years since author's death (Latin: Post mortem auctoris or pma), since there are no jurisdictions where that period is longer than 100 years[1]. Equivalent to template:PD-old-100 on Wikimedia Commons.

Copyright situation in the United states is less clear, and depends on information if the work was published with approval of the copyright holder or not. If a reproduction of this work was published more than 95 years ago than the work is in Public Domain in the US. Same if it was never published, since than copyrights have expired 70 years after author's death. However if the first authorized publication occured less than 95 years ago than there is a chance that this work is still copyrighted in the US[2].

Little Johnny Jones.jpg
Little Johnny Jones (Q6650560)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method published more than 95 years ago
▼ 0 reference
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Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 70 years pma or shorter
determination method 70 years after author's death
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Copyrights in US have expired in the US 95 years after publication (before 1925).

In the US Copyright term is calculated based on date of publication. Since author George M. Cohan (Q563017) died in 1942, the musical is in Public Domain in most of the world. Equivalent to template:PD-old-70-expired on Wikimedia Commons.

Google 2015 logo.svg
Google logo (Q1764530)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method ineligible for copyright protection
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Google Logo is protected by trademark laws, but it is not copyrighted. The reason copyright laws do not apply to Google Logo is that you can not copyright a word, typed using standard Sans-serif font and primary colors (plus yellow)[3].
Nagasakibomb.jpg
Atomic Cloud Rises Over Nagasaki (Q55437339)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method work of Federal Government of the United States
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Works prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Government as part of that person's official duties are in in the Public Domain in the US. Equivalent to template:PD-USGov on Wikimedia Commons. Since the photographer Charles Levy (Q55437350) died in 1997, this work might not be in Public Domain in other jurisdictions.
Copyright rules chart 2014 - Peter B. Hirtle, Cornell University.pdf
Hirtle chart (Q61196189)
copyright status
Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
copyright license Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported
determination method stated by copyright holder at source website
stated as © 2004-2019 Peter B. Hirtle. [] Use of this chart is governed by the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
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Copyright rules chart by Peter B. Hirtle was released under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.
Grapes of wrath cover.jpg
The Grapes of Wrath (Q215983)
copyright status
Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method 95 years after publication with notice and renewal
public domain date 1 January 2035
▼ 0 reference
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Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 70 years pma or longer
determination method 70 years after author's death
public domain date 1 January 2039
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The grapes of wrath novel by John Steinbeck is still copyrighted in the US and in most of the world
Anna Frank - Het achterhuis.jpg
Het achterhuis (Q14624856)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 70 years pma or shorter
determination method 70 years after author's death
start time 1 January 2016
author Anne Frank
▼ 3 reference
Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
public domain date 2047
determination method 95 years after publication with notice and renewal
▼ 0 reference
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Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 70 years pma or shorter
determination method 70 years after author's death
end time 2050
author Otto Frank
applies to part compilation
statement supported by Anne Frank Fund
sourcing circumstances disputed
applies to part disputed
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In case of 1st edition of Anna Frank diary Het achterhuis (Q14624856) the copyright should be straight forward:
  • Anna Frank died in 1944, so her works are in public domain in all the countries with 70 year pma or shorter[1]
  • In the US Het achterhuis (Q14624856) is still copyrighted since US protects copyrights for 95 years since publication for works published through 1977[2].
  • Copyright in Netherlands also expired in 2016, but for more complex reasons. For details see article in English Wikipedia.

However, the case become more complicated after, Anne Frank Fund the foundation that held the copyrights to the book, made a claim that Anne Frank's father, Otto Frank was not just the editor of the book, but also a coauthor. That would extend the copyrights to 2050, 70 years after Frank's death. This claim is disputed.

Richard II (1921) Yale.djvu
The Tragedy of King Richard the Second (Q59570050)
copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method published more than 95 years ago
▼ 0 reference
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Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 100 years pma or shorter
determination method 100 years after author's death
applies to part body text
▼ 0 reference
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Normal rank copyrighted Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 70 years pma or longer
determination method 70 years after author's death
applies to part front and back matter of a book
public domain date 1 January 2046
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How to add Copyright statements?[edit]

Copyright statements are a bit clunky to add by hand, as they always require multiple qualifiers. In the future we should build tools for easily adding a some of the most often used statements. Below are some of the existing tools which might be useful.

moveClaim.js[edit]

MoveClaim is a very useful tool designed for moving and copying statements from one item to another. Installation tips can be found at Wikidata:Tools/Edit items. In case of Copyright statements one can use it to copy statements from one item with properly set up copyright statements to another. All you need is an item number of the destination item. Use this SPARQL query to find exemplar items for different cases.

QuickStatements[edit]

QuickStatements is an excellent tool for adding statements to batches of items. See Help:QuickStatements to learn how to use it. QuickStatements can be used without issues when adding single new statement to an item without any. However it has some unexpected behavior when one wants to add multiple statements. For example, importing the following V1 commands:
Q70784 P6216 Q19652 P1001 Q30 P459 Q47246828
Q70784 P6216 Q19652 P1001 Q60332278 P459 Q29940705

should have resulted in

copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 100 years pma or shorter
determination method 100 years after author's death
▼ 0 reference
+ add reference
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction United States of America
determination method published more than 95 years ago
▼ 0 reference
+ add reference


+ add value

However QuickStatements currently produces

copyright status
Normal rank public domain Arbcom ru editing.svg edit
applies to jurisdiction countries with 100 years pma or shorter
United States of America
determination method 100 years after author's death
published more than 95 years ago
▼ 0 reference
+ add reference


+ add value

You can get desired effect by using

Q70784 P6216 Q19652 P1001 Q30 P459 Q47246828
Q70784 P6216 Q15687061 P1001 Q60332278 P459 Q29940705

which uses public domain (Q15687061), a permanent duplicate of public domain (Q19652). All public domain (Q15687061) are automatically replaced with public domain (Q19652), see {{Autofix}} template at Property talk:P6216. When using QuickStatements always inspect the output of small test runs before doing any larger batches.

See Also[edit]

References[edit]