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Copyright discussions

This page hosts discussions on works that may violate Wikisource's copyright policy. All arguments should be based entirely on U.S. copyright law. You may join any current discussion or start a new one.

Note that works which are a clear copyright violation may now be speedy deleted under criteria for speedy deletion G6. To protect the legal interests of the Wikimedia Foundation, these will be deleted unless there are strong reasons to keep them within at least two weeks. If there is reasonable doubt, they will be deleted.

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Index:Civil Rights Movement EL Text.pdf[edit]

2014 work that has been sitting tagged as having insufficient licensing information since 2016. The issue was raised with the uploader at the time, and an alleged email from the author was provided on their talk page, but the OTRS procedure was not apparently followed. The work as such is clearly in copyright, both by the author and by other contributors (cover design etc.), so the question is whether we consider the (unverified) emailed statement on the contributor's talk page sufficient.

e-mail from John Duley to Willl Loew-Blosser 10/9/2014

"Will: Thanks so much for following up on this. The answer to your two questions at the end of your email is yes--​ I would be pleased to have it widely circulated so do not intend to copyright it and would be willing to have it published as you suggest. John"

e-mail to John Duley from Will Loew-Blosser 10/4/2014

"Hi John,

Leslie and I have were very pleased to learn so much of East Lansing history from your monograph. As we mentioned at breakfast I’m looking into putting your monograph entitled "The Civil Rights Movement in East Lansing and Edgewood Village” onto wikipedia. There is a section of wikipedia called wikiSource that holds original works that may be then used in the encyclopedia articles as a source material.


The first question is about copyright. WikiSource does not accept copyrighted works. You do not have a copyright notice on the title page but there is no explicit permission to reproduce or republish either.

My view is that iff we were to accept this as a valid {{CC0}} {{PD-author-release}} dedication, which we would then move to Commons, the chances of it avoiding deletion there would be slim. We need proper verification through OTRS for these cases, not least in order to ensure that the copyright owner understands all the consequences of PD dedication or free licensing. --Xover (talk) 12:21, 1 September 2019 (UTC)[reply]

  • I think that the release into PD is clear, and the work could be tagged {{PD-author-release}}. I do not think {{CC0}} can be used because the copyright holder did not explicitly link the work to the Creative Commons Zero deed and legal document. I would perhaps have accepted the notice on the talk page if the editor who posted the notice was themselves the copyright holder. However this is not the case and I am inclined to disallow it without proper OTRS. Is it at all possible to contact Duley directly? —Beleg Tâl (talk) 12:46, 1 September 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    In 2014 the situation was that The author is in his late 90's, quite poor health, and has stopped using e-mail. so I hold that unlikely. And if no followup was forthcoming in 2016, I would tend to think that for internet people to now intrude on an old man with copyright questions would border on being immoral. At least my take is that we have to decide this issue based on the information we already have. --Xover (talk) 12:58, 1 September 2019 (UTC)[reply]
  • Symbol keep vote.svg Keep I also understand it as a clear release into the public domain. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 20:11, 6 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    @Jan Kameníček: If this document was tagged {{PD-author-release}} it would be eligible to be moved to Commons. Pragmatically, how do you rate its chances of surviving a deletion discussion there? --Xover (talk) 06:10, 9 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    @Xover: I have almost no experience with deletion discussions there, but if we are afraid that it will not survive there for some reasons, we can keep it here. Or, if we move it and they decide they do not want it, we can move it back here then. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 09:20, 9 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    @Jan.Kamenicek: The question was meant to probe the logic behind your conclusion, specifically in terms of the standard of evidence we apply. If we are confident that the available evidence is sufficient to conclude it has been released into the public domain, then we should also be confident that it will survive a deletion discussion at Commons. Since I am not confident that is the case absent confirmation through the OTRS process (and neither is Beleg Tâl based on their comment above), I wanted to check whether you deliberately wanted to apply a different (lower) standard of evidence or whether there was some confusion behind it.
    In practice, in these circumstances, if the consensus is to keep this as {{PD-author-release}}, I would not personally transfer this to Commons because I believe it would be against policy there and would be deleted. But another user very well might move it to Commons at any time, unless we used {{do not move to Commons}} to mark it to keep local. But if we do that we are essentially saying that we do not believe this is properly licensed (i.e. that our {{PD-author-release}} tag is a lie). This is unlike the typical situations where a file is PD in the US but not in its home country: in that case there is a genuine difference in policy between Commons and enWS. In the case at hand the policy is ostensibly the same on enWS and Commons, but we are (I suspect) applying a different standard of evidence.
    And if we are doing that then we should be very conscious and clear about that fact. It sets precedent for future such cases, and it impacts the risk to our reusers, so it is something we should approach with deliberation and eyes open. --Xover (talk) 10:10, 9 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    Well, neither our nor Commons discussions are legally binding, they are in fact both just lay opinions and it is no wonder that our lay opinion can be different from their lay opinion. As written above, I have almost zero experience with these discussions in Commons, but often heard others saying that they are sometimes trying to be more Catholic than the Pope... So by not moving it we are not saying that we are lying about the license, we are simply saying that our lay opinions about some border cases are different than theirs. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 10:26, 9 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
    Ah. Thanks! --Xover (talk) 10:50, 9 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]
yeah, i would keep it as PD-author-release, here. commons would view failure to follow OTRS as a deletion rationale. i.e. [1]; [2]; [3]. Slowking4Rama's revenge 16:29, 3 December 2019 (UTC)[reply]

Kerry vs. Pickens[edit]

These are by a sitting Senator, but the whole swiftboat thing with Pickens and the SBVT are hardly obvious parts of his official duties. Kerry was at this time a candidate for the Democratic nomination (he hadn't yet dropped out and endorsed Obama), and the SBVT attacks targeted Kerry personally, so these are pretty obviously him acting as a candidate and not a Senator.

On the other hand, we've traditionally given waaaay wide latitude to what we consider to fall within the scope of a Senator's duties (way too much, and I think we should tighten that up going forward).

In this specific case I'd be comfortable with deleting under the former rationale, or tagging them as {{PD-USGov}} under the latter, but I'd like to hear where the community sits on this. Xover (talk) 13:00, 27 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Symbol delete vote.svg Delete I'd definitely agree that these letters were not within (or even remotely discussing) his official duties... they are completely irrelevant to, and don't even discuss the topic of, any legislation that was under consideration at the time. The SBVT thing was purely political theatre, on both sides. Given that I see no way in which these letters would be any different if Kerry had been a candidate who was not in office at the time, it seems obvious that it's not exempt. Jarnsax (talk) 17:25, 28 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The whole SBVT thing was asking about his service in Vietnam which was part of his official duties as a Navy Officer. If it were written at the time as an officer it would count no? If he were an admiral coming up for senate confirmation would we reach the same conclusion it wasn't part of his official duties? MarkLSteadman (talk) 21:26, 28 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@MarkLSteadman: The exemption is specifically for "works of the United States Government...prepared by an officer or part of his official duties." This implies a 'work for hire' (it's a corporate author), so we can also pull in "a work prepared as an employee as part of his employment."
  • Kerry was no longer a serving officer at the time, and thus had no "official duty" to comment about his previous service. While he was still serving, the work would still have to be explicitly "part of his official duties," so something that he was actually obligated to prepare.
  • An officer seeking confirmation from, or testifying before, Congress, would do so only under direction from the Commander in Chief, so it's part of their duty. As the law currently stands (getting into untested ground a bit, here, but as it seems to stand in the US) an Officer of the United States (and thus part of the Executive Branch) they cannot be compelled by the Legislative to testify when it relates to their official duties, as when carrying out those duties they are using "a portion of the Sovereign Power of the United States" delegated to them by the President and are thus eligible for qualified immunity from contempt of Congress for refusal to testify.
  • There is no exemption under statute law for works of Members of Congress.. they are neither officers nor employees of the United States Government (specifically prohibited from being so by the Ineligibility Clause of the US Constitution)
  • The relevant exemption for Congress is instead from the common law, is for "edicts of government, broadly construed" and dates back to an 1830s court case, but was addressed quite recently by the Supreme Court

    For purposes of the Copyright Act, judges cannot be the “author[s]” of “whatever work they perform in their capacity” as lawmakers. Because legislators, like judges, have the authority to make law, it follows that they, too, cannot be “authors.” And, as with judges, the doctrine applies to whatever work legislators perform in their capacity as legislators, including explanatory and procedural materials they create in the discharge of their legislative duties.

    —Georgia et al. v. Public.Resource.Org, Inc. (2020)

  • The definition of "law" in this case in extremely broad (this is a principle of the common, not statute law).... "non-statute" materials prepared by Members in the course of drafting legislation, that could be used by judges to construct the meaning and sense of Congress behind the words actually enacted, are "law" in the sense intended, as is the 'administrative law' in the Code of Federal Regulations. The concept is that "actus reus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea" - essentially that you have to be able to know what the law is to commit a crime. Jarnsax (talk) 15:58, 29 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks. My main question was thinking through this in a more rigorous way given that it all seemed a bit wishy-washy. My inclination was that it didn't apply and I was pushing to nail down why it doesn't apply. For example, that {{PD-US-Gov}} is not for legislators. MarkLSteadman (talk) 17:05, 29 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, I kinda took it as a request to try to really explain the reasoning behind it... it's why the Constitution starts "We the People" though we know what specific people actually wrote it: because our representatives, when acting as the legislative, are essentially us, we (as a people) are the collective authors of the works it creates, that we give our implicit consent to when electing congresscritters. WE are the swamp, lol. Jarnsax (talk) 17:57, 29 July 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • Jarnsax: “There is no exemption under statute law for works of Members of Congress”—actually, that’s not true. “Copyright protection under the Copyright Act is not available for ‘any work of the United States Government.’ … This includes works created by the President; Congress; the federal judiciary; federal departments, agencies, boards, bureaus, or commissions; or any other officer or employee of the U.S. federal government while acting within the course of his or her official duties.” (From the Compendium.) TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 02:30, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@TE(æ)A,ea. You're arguing with the Supreme Court (see quote above, or look up the case). What you are missing is that Congressmen are not Officers (or employees) of the Unites States Government. First sentence of w:Officer of the United States... "a functionary of the executive or judicial branches of the federal government of the United States..." I mentioned above, the Ineligibility Clause... "no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during his Continuance in Office." They are not "employees" because they are not hired or fired, it's an elective office not a 'job'. The reasoning goes way off into too much depth for here, but 'law' is ineligible for copyright due to a lack of authorship as defined by the Copyright Act. In the specific case, the Georgia Legislature is denied copyright in 'non binding annotations' that were published along with the actual statute. Jarnsax (talk) 02:53, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Jarnsax: This work was published after Public.Resource.Org was decided; it references that case in the paragraph I quoted. Here is the full quote:

“[T]he bar on copyright protection for federal works … applies to works created by all federal ‘officer[s] or employee[s],’ without regard for the nature of their position or scope of their authority.” Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, Inc., 140 S. Ct. 1498, 1509–10 (2020). This includes works created by the President; Congress; the federal judiciary; federal departments, agencies, boards, bureaus, or commissions; or any other officer or employee of the U.S. federal government while acting within the course of his or her official duties. It also includes works prepared by an officer or employee of the government of the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or the organized territories under the jurisdiction of the federal government.

@TE(æ)A,ea. Now read the very next section of the Compendium regarding government edicts, 313.6(C)(2). It tells you the same thing I just did. Jarnsax (talk) 03:24, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
To explain a bit more, when it mentions "Congress" in (C)(1) it is referring to Officers and employees of the legislative branch (i.e. Congress) like the w:Architect of the Capitol, who are not Members of COngress and have no legislative authority. Jarnsax (talk) 03:32, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Since this is probably going to go here anyhow, actual "laws" (passed by both houses, and signed by the president) are edicts of Government, as are "rules" (i.e. administrative law) written by agencies with rulemaking authority delegated by statute (like the EPA). That they are not copyrightable is a "principle", it's not written in the statutes, it's common law (England does copyright laws, but they actually passed a law post-revolution to make it that way). Congress can also (and does) create "works of the United States Government" when they do things like pass a simple resolution in the House to express condolences after a former member dies, and those are not copyrightable under (C)(1), but they are also not legislation. Jarnsax (talk) 04:50, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Jarnsax: This discussion is interesting, and can have far-reaching consequences for how we treat works by congressmen on the project. I have always been unclear on what exactly the copyright situation for these are.
The executive branch are fairly clear as {{PD-USGov}}, and the judiciary are usually fairly clear as {{PD-EdictGov}}. And Congress as such is normally also producing works that fall under EdictGov, especially after PRO.
But we get a lot of works by individual congressmen that can be anything from speeches on the floor, to press releases, speeches to the electorate, town halls and Q&A sessions with constituents. We have historically given wide latitude to keeping these under the theory that PD-USGov was in effect, and a congressman's "official duties" includes various kinds of schmoozing with constituents. But if there is no PD-USGov exemption for congressmen, that means only PD-EdictGov controls the issue; and EdictGov (even after PRO) will only apply in those narrow circumstances where whatever work somehow bears on a law or other edict of the government. That would eliminate a wide swathe of texts that we currently host.
In other words, this is an issue I believe it is worthwhile spending some time and effort to get right. Xover (talk) 07:56, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Xover Yeah, "employees" is obvious, and it's fairly easy to define an "Officer of the United States"... nominated by President, confirmed by Senate, has a physical paper commission, swears an oath to the Constitution.
What's kind of odd is the case to watch right now [4] isn't actually a copyright case, but probably will go towards the point here... if a congressman speaking at Trump's Jan 6th rally was 'acting in the scope of his duties' by addressing the public at a political event. There have been other, similar cases (like Murtha), but I think they are generally more about the Westfall Act (tort law) which has it's own definition of 'employee' that is much broader.
All the copyright compendium really says about "edicts of government" is citing cases where courts have agreed that since the Copyright Act doesn't explicitly create a copyright in them (doesn't mention them at all) then there isn't one (and people have been calling BS on Georgia for years). We're just left with that it should be 'broadly construed' in the public interest. Jarnsax (talk) 09:33, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

So, after some more digging around, I tracked down the 11th Circuit's decision in Georgia v. PRO here. [5] What's interesting about it is they get to the same place starting from first principles, and essentially create a three part test:

Because our ultimate inquiry is whether a work is authored by the People, meaning whether it represents an articulation of the sovereign will, our analysis is guided by a consideration of those characteristics that are the hallmarks of law. In particular, we rely on the identity of the public officials who created the work, the authoritativeness of the work, and the process by which the work was created. These are critical markers. Where all three point in the direction that a work was made in the exercise of sovereign power -- which is to say where the official who created the work is entrusted with delegated sovereign authority, where the work carries authoritative weight, and where the work was created through the procedural channels in which sovereign power ordinarily flows -- it follows that the work would be attributable to the constructive authorship of the People, and therefore uncopyrightable.

This test (which the SC did not adopt, so it's only precedent in the 11th Cir.) excludes a lot of Congress-proximate stuff. Jarnsax (talk) 11:09, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • Jarnsax: This is a test for whether a work is an edict of government, not if a work is a work of the U.S. government made by Congress (or a member thereof). “It tells you the same thing I just did”—it mentions the edict-of-government exception, yes; but it also, separately, mentions that the works of “[the] President [and] Congress” are “‘work[s] of the United States Government,’” which seems to imply there are non-EdictGov works by the President and Congress which are still USGov. In addition, I would say that all resolutions passed by Congress are edicts of government, and fall under that exception (rather than the more general government-work exception). TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 12:25, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@TE(æ)A,ea. Wrote a bunch, and wiped it, because I think I know the difficulty here. You are looking at and referring to the Copyright Compendium, which is useful, but does not have the force of law.
From 17 USC §101, the actual statute, "A “work of the United States Government” is a work prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Government as part of that person’s official duties." That is the sum total of the definition. Actual elected officials are neither Officers of the US nor employees (employee is not defined, so law dictionary meaning. Who is their 'boss' that directs them how to do their job? Not employees.) The Compendium has to be read in context of what the law itself says, it is explanatory of USCO practice, but not 'proscriptive'... in context, they are trying to make clear that they are talking about any officer or employee of any part of the federal government whatsoever, but the restriction "officer or employee" cannot be expanded upon by anything but a revision of 17 USC by Congress. Officers of the United States are created through the w:Appointments Clause, and Members of Congress are prohibited from being an Officer by the w:Ineligibility Clause. Jarnsax (talk) 14:10, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Jarnsax: While engaging in this discussion, I have come to agree with the concerns raised in your position. However, we are neither judges nor legislators, and so (in my opinion) for Wikisource purposes the Compendium is dispositive, regardless of any such potentially serious errors. Unless the authors and editors of the Compendium decide to rewrite it to reflect this concern, or some new law or court case declares it so, we must follow the “leading law” (as much as the Compendium is that) in this case. The introduction to the Compendium gloats about how it has been cited in court cases as “highly persuasive,” and we cannot say that a judge will absolutely disagree with the Compendium’s finding, so, until such a change happens, I say we should follow the Compendium. (Also, because it supports my opinion.) As for your comment evincing a different interpretation of the Compendium, I disagree; I believe the catch-all clause at the end (“any other officer or employee of the U.S. federal government”) would cover officers and employees of Congress whether or no the sentence mentioned “Congress” separately; and I don’t think that the reference to “Congress” was meant to refer to “the officers and employees of Senators and Congressmen but not the representatives themselves”—a distinction they could have made. Regarding the 11th Circuit’s opinion, while it is not a nationwide standard, absent a Supreme Court ruling, I see no reason why Wikisource should not (in a general manner) adopt the finding as interpretive policy for EdictGov, as being more specific than the Supreme Court’s ruling. (By the way, as a separate matter, this discussion should probably be moved to a more general forum; but that can happen later.) TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 15:06, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@TE(æ)A,ea. Yeah, I was happy to find the 11th Circuit ruling, also they do a really good job explaining why edicts are a matter of 'authorship', even though that admittedly sounds completely nonsensical on the surface. Regarding the Compendium, though, it does also state (in the intro) that it doesn't override any statute and isn't even binding on the Registrar... it just has the 'force of argument', and doesn't set precedent. We may disagree, but I'm pretty sure applying PD-USGov to anything not authored by an 'officer or employee' would be doomed to fail (though in reality they are probably written by staffers and USGov as works for hire anyhow). I think it's the boundaries of deviant congresscritter behavior (Murtha, anyone?) and what is 'campaigning' vs 'legislative' that's more likely to be an issue. Jarnsax (talk) 15:46, 8 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

(as a quick interjection, cases like Murtha - under the Federal Tort Claims Act - are irrelevant to us, because the FCTA has it's own, extremely broad, definition of 'employee'. The criminal case about Jan 6th I linked above is going to hang on if it was part of the MoC's 'official duties', not his 'employee-ness') Jarnsax (talk) 01:42, 9 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@TE(æ)A,ea. It might be helpful to look at the two relevant templates over on Commons, c:Template:PD-USGov-Congress and c:Template:PD-USGov-POTUS. Both (correctly) attribute the works they apply to as those of 'employees'... of Congress on the one hand, and the 'Executive Office of the President' on the other. Works of the United States Government created by employees of "Congress" are works for hire, and per 17 USC § 201 (b) "the employer or other person for whom the work was prepared is considered the author for purposes of this title"... so, the 'author' of works created by employees of Congress is Congress "itself" (as a corporate body) for purposes of copyright. The same logic applies in the other case.. they are employees of the President, so their 'works for hire' are works of the "President" (as an 'office', a 'corporation sole', not personal property ofc). Parsing 313.6(C)(1), they actually say "works created by the President; Congress; the federal judiciary; federal departments, agencies, boards, bureaus, or commissions; or any other officer or employee of the U.S. federal government". All of the items listed before the semicolon are 'corporate bodies' (for instance, it does not say 'judges', but 'the federal judiciary'...stuff like the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure). Jarnsax (talk) 03:20, 9 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • @TE(æ)A,ea.: By my count you're outnumbered 3:1 on this one; but I don't like closing these on mere majority vote, and especially not for a delete outcome. Would you be very strongly opposed to closing this as delete now and then let the issue of the possible primacy of the Compendium shake out over time in other copyright discussions? Testing the reasoning against different facts and situation often leads to better conclusions and better elucidates an issue. --Xover (talk) 11:09, 28 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • You are mistaken; I have come here to discuss copyright, not to argue for deletion or not. I have not, until after this comment, looked at the actual text in dispute here. I would think that the materials here relate more to then-Senator candidate-for-President Pickens, and thus not be relevant to the general dispute regarding what constitutes the work of a Senator. (Supposing these to be deleted, the Wikipedia page should be updated to reflect that, and also the 10-year-old discussion that deleted the other letters.) TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 13:39, 28 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
      @TE(æ)A,ea.: Hmm. Thanks for the clarification. However, while I am somewhat prone to extended discussions in abstract myself—as you may have noticed :)—the primary goal of these discussions on WS:CV is to reach a practical resolution for the text in question. In that light, can I assume that if you do not express a direct !vote through {{vd}}/{{vk}} you are discussing abstractly rather than arguing any particular way for the specific work? I want to stress that your input is both helpful and (very much!) appreciated, but I need to try to balance the concerns so the backlog here doesn't grow any longer than it already is. Xover (talk) 06:58, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Translation:Judgment of the Supreme Court of Justice No. 6083/2546/Syllabus[edit]

A syllabus (summary of a judgment) is not covered by the license {{PD-TH-exempt}} as tagged.

As it is a work created under the government's control, its copyright will expire after 50 years from its creation or first publication (according to section 23), which is around 2053.

The work does not appear to have otherwise been released into public domain.

--Miwako Sato (talk) 11:20, 11 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@Miwako Sato: Syllabi are usually authored by the court. Is there any reason to presume that this one wasn't also? The license tag is in any case wrong: this should be tagged {{PD-EdictGov}}. Xover (talk) 16:04, 11 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
This one is, indeed, authored by the court (as its heading says that its author is "Supreme Court of Justice's Bureau of Judge Trainees"). But a syllabus (summary) of a judgment is not the judgment itself, and {{PD-TH-exempt}} only applies to judgments. I think {{PD-EdictGov}} applies in the same way too, because it says it applies to "decisions", not their "summaries". --Miwako Sato (talk) 16:36, 11 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
EdictGov is much wider. It'll apply to explanatory material etc. as well so long as it bears in some way on the law or its interpretation. Xover (talk) 17:26, 11 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Xover Remember that Thailand isn't a 'common law' country (re w:List_of_national_legal_systems#Common_law), so we can only look at the statutory provisions in their positive law, and the treaties they are a part of (Berne and TRIPS). A work can be 'edictgov' and denied protection in the US while still copyrighted at home, UK law being an example. It's similar to how the US states that PD-USGov only applies in the US... that they reserve the right to enforce copyright claims on such works in other jurisdictions. (ce: see ) Jarnsax (talk) 17:23, 19 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Miwako Sato The scope is wider than just judgements, per 1(1)(7)(4) of the Thai copyright act. The exemption is for "judicial decisions, orders, decisions and official reports". Since the syllabus appears to have been published by the court together with the rest of the decision, they are one work as published, and it appears to be clearly official. Being published as 'the judgement' (i.e. decision) should place the whole work (since the syllabus was written 'under direction', presumably, and so is a work for hire) in the PD.
Basically, it's not up to us to second-guess the publisher. If the Thai government owns the copyright in the syllabus, and publishes it as an integral part of a work that is ineligible for copyright (and I am making assumptions here, but presumably there is not some other "more official" version of the full judgement that does not include it) then they are placing the syllabus in the PD "as" part of the judgement. Jarnsax (talk) 16:05, 19 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Jarnsax: The full judgment is available on Wikisource (both Thai & English). The syllabus was not published together with or as part of the judgment. The judgment (file at Commons) does not contain the syllabus. The syllabus is part of a separate book, whose title translates Supreme Court Judgments of the Year 2546 BE (Thammasat University library). Moreover, like I said above, a work created "under direction" of a Thai government agency is copyrighted for 50 years from its creation or first publication, according to the Thai Copyright Act, section 23. --Miwako Sato (talk) 16:30, 19 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Miwako Sato Ok, that's a different situation than I assumed was going on, and changes things drastically (I was assuming this was published similar to US cases, where an 'official syllabus' is often published as the introduction to the case in the judgement itself.)
With it having been initially published separately, it's status is going to be that of the book it was published in (I see a BY-NC-ND license, but can't see the copyright page or colophon). I would assume, just from that, that you are correct we can't host it.
I'm not disagreeing about section 23, or the term. It would just have been 'overridden' if the government had published that copyrighted work as an 'integral part' of a work that was ineligible (the judgement). That not being the case, you can disregard my objection as a misunderstanding of the situation. Jarnsax (talk) 16:43, 19 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
FYI (US Govt) is an example of what I was assumed was going on... where the syllabus is a 'work for hire' by the Reporter of Decisions, but placed in the PD by it's publication by the court as part of the official decision. (ignoring PD-USGov as irrelevant for the example.) Jarnsax (talk) 16:54, 19 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Miwako Sato: The linked website appears to be unavailable currently. Who is the author and the publisher of Supreme Court Judgments of the Year 2546 BE? If it is an entirely unrelated entity (person, university, company, etc.) then it will presumably be in copyright. If it is like similar records published in the US, the notional author is the "reporter" of the judgement and includes things like the syllabus. Xover (talk) 13:57, 27 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Collection Court Judgment
Title Judgment of the Supreme Court, B.E. 2546, Volume 11
Contributors Suwan Trakanphan, Editor
Keyword Supreme Court verdict
Description Judgment of the Supreme Court, B.E. 2546, Volume 11
Publisher Office of the Court of Justice
Date 2003
"Judgment of the Supreme Court, 2003, Volume 11 is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 Thailand License ."
(from translated by Google) Jarnsax (talk) 18:02, 27 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks. For some reason I can't access that website. Considering it is published by the Publisher Office of the Court of Justice my conclusion in the absence of contrary evidence is that this falls within similar exceptions as the equivalent SCOTUS material would. I've not been able to track down relevant info on สุวรรณ ตระการพันธุ์ (Suwan Trakanphan) so I am open to the possibility that their affiliation may point in the direction of this being an independent work, despite the publisher, but absent that I'm leaning in the direction of {{PD-EdictGov}}. Xover (talk) 11:20, 28 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

General interest (not about a specific file)[edit]

While Googling around copyright matters I found this interesting article [6].... The title "Simultaneous Internet Publication and the Berne Convention" expresses what it's about pretty quote, "This Article recommends that works of foreign origin should still be included in the definition of “United States works” when the copyright holder actively solicits customers in the United States via the Internet" and justifies it pretty well IMO. Seems like the argument (or at least points from it) could be enlightening here....I vaguely recall an Australian case (regarding slander, I believe) hinging on this. (c.e. I seem to be unable to copy a working link.... Google it, its in the "Santa Clara High Technology Law Journal.") Jarnsax (talk) 18:28, 30 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Yeah. I don't see where it makes any difference for us, though.--Prosfilaes (talk) 19:42, 30 August 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The Net of Faith[edit]

c. 1443 Czech work by Peter Chelčický (c. 1390 – c. 1460), that claims to have been "translated in 1947 as part of a Bachelor's of Divinity thesis at the University of Berkeley." The source is however specified as, which specifies no licensing. The translator is given as "Enrico C. S. Molnár", who appears to have either died in 1999 or may still be living.

@Jan.Kamenicek: I think possibly you may be interested in this work. Xover (talk) 12:52, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • Xover: That source is spurious, and a later attribution; that “edition” may be found on IA here. This would be PD-US-no-notice for the thesis, right? TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 13:05, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    The source ( was probably right because the IA scan is also a 2006 reprint by What is more, as an IA contributor they mention Tom Lock who runs and with whom I cooperated when saving On Spiritual Warfare by the same author. I agree that we can assume {{PD-US-no-notice}} for the 1947 thesis (if not, then {{PD-US-no-renewal}} is a certainty). If the edition available from the IA is found satisfactory, I will be happy to proofread it. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 14:40, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @Jan.Kamenicek: Unlike On The Spiritual Battle, which is listed as being translated by Lock and Enns, The Net of Faith is listed as being translated by an "Enrico C. S. Molnár" (whose identity I haven't been able to establish with any certainty in a quick bit of googling, but is once listed with vital years 1913–1999). Thus Lock and Enns do not have the power to license this work, barring some form of copyright transfer from Molnár. Xover (talk) 15:06, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @Xover: Of course, I know. I wrote about it only to show how I know that Tom Lock is connected with and that the contributor who added it to Wikisource could really have as their source (because above it was doubted as spurious). --Jan Kameníček (talk) 15:37, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @TE(æ)A,ea.: A thesis submission is just limited publication. In order to be published for copyright purposes some further action must take place, for example if had gotten a license from Molnár or his estate to publish it that would then constitute general publication. Xover (talk) 14:54, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @Xover: Is there any official ruling that explicitely states that thesis submission is not considered fully published? I have found two sources which seem to state otherwise: Copyright and Publication Status of Pre-1978 Dissertations, p.825 (it deals primarily with dissertations, but in principle it may IMO apply to any university thesis), and especially Copyright and Cultural Institutions, p. 230). --Jan Kameníček (talk) 16:31, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @Jan.Kamenicek: I haven't (re)read Hirtle 2009, so it may contain something of relevance (Peter Hirtle is generally a good source for such things), but last I heard his stance was that general publication could not be assumed for dissertations. Clement and Levine 2011 is an interesting approach, but the article suffers from methodological problems and confirmation bias. For example, they quote a commercial microfilm distributor assuring university publishers that works distributed on microfilm, as a format, are eligible for copyright protection (through fulfilling the deposit requirement iff deposited with the LoC) in order to argue that the works in question can not be protected by copyright.
    But mostly, Clement and Levine do not really make a legal argument (they're mostly doing digital humanities, not law) and consequently ignore Estate of Martin Luther King. In that case the 11th Circuit found that King's I Have a Dream, which was performed before a crowd of thousands, broadcast nationally on multiple networks, and where they handed out the text of the speech in a press tent at the event, didn't constitute general publication. The court sets the bar pretty high and establishes several factors that must be present in order to find that a general publication has happened, not the least of which is that the publication has to be authorised (cf. also Diversey v. Schmidly, 738 F. 3d 1196 (10th Cir. 2013)).
    The bottom line is that while there are circumstances under which a pre-1978 dissertation could have ended up in the public domain, it cannot be assumed; and determining the actual status with any certainty would require specific knowledge of the circumstances of the particular dissertation in question. Xover (talk) 19:05, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • Xover: Diversey dealt with a university stealing a student’s dissertation before it was finished, making copies, and distributing those copies in the university’s library. The case also deals specifically with (unauthorized) distribution. The language in this case (which is newer, and thus may carry more weight) implies that once the dissertation was placed on the library’s catalog, where anyone could view it or check it out, it becomes published for copyright concerns. (See p. 13.) [The library can’t claim fair use for distributing copies of a work that was not legally published; by inference, a dissertation is published when placed in the library’s catalog for viewing, a claim substantiated elsewhere in the opinion.] In Estate of Martin Luther King, Jr., the issue was that his dramatic reading of his (prepared) speech was a performance, not a publication; although I may be misremembering, as I haven’t read it recently. If my memory is correct, Estate applies with less force here, and Hotaling is more relevant. (Also, thinking about this, these important and discussion-relevant cases should be scan-backed here.) TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 19:45, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    The MLK case says:
    We emphasize the summary judgment posture of this case, which necessitates that we disregard evidence that may be important or even dispositive at trial. In other words, in this summary judgment posture, we consider only the evidence with respect to which there is no genuine issue of material fact. This evidence includes only the fact of the oral delivery of the Speech to a large audience and the fact that the sponsors of the event including Dr. King sought and successfully obtained live broadcasts on radio and television and extensive contemporary coverage in the news media. In this regard, we do not consider at this stage of the litigation two potentially important pieces of evidence brought to our attention by CBS. First, an advance text of the Speech was apparently available in a press tent on the day of the speech. According to an eyewitness affidavit submitted by CBS, members of the public at large—not merely the press—were permitted access to the press tent and were given copies of the advance text. However, the Estate has proffered affidavits which contradict the statements of the CBS witness, and suggest that access was controlled by the SCLC within reasonable means. Moreover, the Estate argues that much of the content of the Speech was generated extemporaneously by Dr. King and was not contained in this advance text—an argument that we do not consider but that can be explored by the district court.
    So the court said that if the text of the speech was available to everyone, then that might change things. Since a University library offering works via ILL does make it available to everyone, that clearly distinguishes this from the MLK case. The crowd and broadcast parts are irrelevant for this; it's understood that's not publication. In general, if a dissertion was completed at a US university and a copyright notice-free copy was given to the university for their library, to be distributed to a general audience, I'd say that's a clear case of general publication without notice.--Prosfilaes (talk) 00:50, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    That they don't rule on those points does not mean they don't consider the associated issues in their reasoning for what they do rule on. They go into significant depth on what factors would be necessary in order for a general publication to have occurred, and as I recall (I'd have to re-read it to be sure), that includes the need for the publication to be authorised.
    Which bears on this case in the sense that consensus in the area appears to be that mere deposit in a university's archive is not sufficient even if a given university is willing to distribute it through the ILL, because 1) ILL may be sufficiently restricted in who can use it and through access agreements, and 2) deposit is required in order to get your degree (I think some places they even specify the number of paper copies you have to submit) but not necessarily agreement to publish beyond academic fair use and archives exceptions. Even Clement and Levine (who, as mentioned, suffer from too much wishful thinking) found that their most optimum selection of "community of practice" saw a significant difference between microfilm distribution (which, AIUI, was a commercial service) and deposit with possible ILL access.
    If you want to persuade me that this particular thesis is PD through some path involving a general publication without notice I am happy to entertain the argument; but that all pre-1978 US thesis and dissertations can be ipso facto presumed PD is a couple of bridges too far. In addition, it would be nonsensical for us to adopt such a crude presumption that directly conflicts with what US university libraries and archives' own practice and guidance is. Xover (talk) 06:59, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • The publication of a dissertation is authorised, because the writer of the dissertation chooses to go to university, enter a program requiring the submission of a dissertation, write a dissertation, and submit it for approval, &c. It is, in sum, the writer’s choice to enter the dissertation program, and thus they must allow (and legally authorise) the publication of the dissertation once written and formally received. “ILL may be… restricted,” but there is no indication here that they are so restricted. That university libraries are more difficult to access than other libraries is not relevant, so long as the library is not a private (whether business or personal) one. Really, I would be more inclined to consider the deposition of dissertation copies as the method in which dissertations are published, and thus released to the academic community. I don’t think that such a policy is in such great disagreement with (then-)contemporary university library practice, either. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 18:28, 6 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    I tried to contact Tom Lock but did not get any answer. However, I still think that this work is in public domain, per above. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 21:58, 25 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Xover: Looking through the Compendium, I find some choice quotes, which I believe rather dispositive: “[P]ublication occurs when one or more copies … are distributed to a member of the public who is not subject to any express or implied restrictions concerning the disclosure of the content of that work” (§ 1905.1). “Lending, renting, or leasing copies of a work constitutes publication of that work” (Ibid.). “[P]ublication occurs when copies … are distributed to the public by means of a sale or other transfer of ownership … . Likewise, publication occurs when copies … are distributed by means of rental, lease, or lending” (§ 1905.2). Similarly, from here, “a work is ‘published’ if one or more copies … embodying it are distributed to the public—that is, generally to persons under no explicit or implicit restrictions with respect to disclosure of its contents—without regard to the manner in which the copies … changed hands” (p. 138). The Compendium also discusses how limited a distribution must be to qualify as “limited”—a key, recurring requirement is that the number of people is limited, which is not the case for a book placed in a library’s catalog. It seems quite clear to me that all thesis publications would fall clearly under this definition of “publication.” In addition, the Compendium clearly distinguishes Estate, which was publicly performed, not publicly displayed. Such a difference does not apply, and could not apply, to a work placed in a library’s catalog for loans. Thus, it seems clear to me that all dissertations released into university library systems (and ILL systems) were published, as there is an initial presumption against giving copies of a book to a library for further distribution being somehow a “limited publication.” (The Compendium also discusses offering a work to others, in what would be limited publication, being a general publication when the offer is made “‘for purposes of further distribution, public performance, or public display’” (§ 1906.1, citing 17 U.S.C. § 101). TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 03:09, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

My Homeland[edit]

The lyrics of the Iraqi national anthem, originally written c. 1934 as a poem by Ibrahim Touqan (1905–1941). Touqan was Palestinian, and the work was published during the British Mandate. During this period the term was pma. 50, and it does not seem subsequent laws were made retroactive (until the Israeli law took effect in 2007), so that copyright expired in 1991. Palestine is not, so far as I can tell, a signatory to Berne or a WTO member, mainly because neither the UK nor the US recognises them as a sovereign state. Neither, for the same reason, does there appear to be any bilateral treaty on copyright between the US and Palestine. In other words, so far as I can tell this work has no copyright protection in the US. However, if by some miracle the US should recognise Palestine and they join the WTO, the URAA would kick in and might restore a pub. +95 copyright (until 2030) for it (probably not, but if all the right esoteric variables shook out just wrong it just might).

So the original is public domain enough for Wikisource purposes, at least currently. But how in the heck do we tag this?

And then there is the issue of the translation, for which no source is provided, and given its popularity in the relevant region pinning down first publication for a given translation is going to be… challenging. Xover (talk) 15:31, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • Wikipedia provides two references for the translation. The first eventually links back to Wikipedia, and the second is a completely different translation. See this edit, which added the first translation; aside from the line breaks, it is nearly exactly what we have here. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 16:30, 3 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • It would have a restoration date on the date of accession no, not the 1996 date? So it would have to have Palestine decide to keep it copyrighted (e.g. via pma + 100 or something) so it would not be PD in Palestine when it joins but that doesn't seem likely (even if was in a different non-Berne signatory).
(2) The “date of restoration” of a restored copyright is—
(A) January 1, 1996, if the source country of the restored work is a nation adhering to the Berne Convention or a WTO member country on such date, or
(B) the date of adherence or proclamation, in the case of any other source country of the restored work.

MarkLSteadman (talk) 03:32, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

It is exceedingly unlikely to happen, yes. For all practical purposes we can ignore the possibility until there is a US-recognized Palestine (or the opposite) with copyright relations for which we can make an assessment. --Xover (talk) 07:28, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I would just tag it as in the public domain on the URAA restoration date. MarkLSteadman (talk) 13:18, 4 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Decision of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Concerning the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution[edit]

The text is the English translation of the Decision of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Concerning the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. However, it is believed that the text fails the requirement of {{PD-PRC-exempt}}, which doesn't exempt Chinese Communist Party documents from copyright. Though Chinese case laws once did ruled that CCP Constitutions and CCP National Congresses Reports can be treated as works with administrative, legislative and judicial properties, the text itself clearly don't fall under the two kinds of work (see also s:zh:Template:PD-PRC-CPC, which sums up the current consensus on Chinese Wikisource. The issue on whether CCP Constitutions and CCP National Congresses Reports fall under Chinese public domain is still controversial there).

The text is created in 1966, which enters Chinese public domain in 2016 (1966+50=2016), and fails the URAA date of 1996-01-01. The text is therefore not in US public domain, and fails the ordinary copyright requirement for English Wikisource works.廣九直通車 (talk) 07:32, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Also please refer to the corresponding deletion request on Commons.廣九直通車 (talk) 08:38, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
And the corresponding text on Chinese Wikisource, in which its copyright tag confirmed that the original text itself doesn't fall under Chinese official-work public domain.廣九直通車 (talk) 13:51, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Just so y'all know, I truly hate everything to do with copyright. All the issues and especially the 'laws' are quite beyond me. Your pointing out URAA and then my cursory reading of it and the discussions only confirms my hate for copyright. Blech! Oh well, the work was an interesting read. I suppose the chairman could never have been satisfied as a copyright lawyer - not evil enough (but almost). Shenme (talk) 09:40, 7 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
If it stresses you out, anything published more than 95 years ago is public domain in the US. You can also worry about life+50 for China if you need but that's not a concern for us. That keeps it nice and simple, without misidentifying works as PD when they're not.--Prosfilaes (talk) 04:08, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Václav Havel's 1990 speech in Congress[edit]

I am considering adding the speech of Czechoslovak president Václav Havel from the joint session of the U.S. Congress on 21 February 1990. This speech was performed in Czech and simultaneously translated into English. The English version was published in the Congressional Record of that day, pp. 2601–2109. Do I judge it right that it is in the public domain in the U. S.? --Jan Kameníček (talk) 21:32, 23 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@Jan.Kamenicek: Mere publication in the Congressional Record doesn't affect copyright (public record vs. public domain). But let's see… Your reasoning is that {{PD-CzechGov}} functions like {{PD-USGov}} and covers Havel's speech, and the simultaneous translation is most likely either an "official translation" covered by {{PD-CzechGov}} or an authorised one made by Congress staff and covered by {{PD-USGov}}?
Most copyright laws have {{PD-EdictGov}}-type exceptions (roughly: "things which are laws") rather than {{PD-USGov}}-like exceptions (roughly: "things which were made by the government"). A quick peek at c:COM:Czechia and c:Template:PD-CzechGov suggests it may indeed have {{PD-USGov}}-like exceptions (but I wouldn't want to be too emphatic on that without further research). If that's the case then I would say the reasoning above holds. Xover (talk) 15:02, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Xover: Originally I thought that it could be PD in the U. S. based on the fact it was first published by the U. S. Congress in the Congressional Records. So I was probably wrong in this.
As for {{PD-CzechGov}}, it is something between {{PD-EdictGov}} and {{PD-USGov}}. It is not as general, as PD-USGov, but it is broader than just laws. It specifies several explicit exceptions in the first five points (none of which covers presidential speeches) and then it adds one more point for "other such works where there is public interest in their exclusion from copyright protection". There is no official ruling stating whether presidential speeches fall under this, but e. g. Czech Wikisource decided to include speeches of Czech presidents. Could we do it, based on this, too? --Jan Kameníček (talk) 17:18, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Jan.Kamenicek: I couldn't tell you definitively based on my research so far (which is, admittedly, cursory). The best I can offer is that if such a text was properly sourced, scan-backed, and tagged roughly with the license tags above I would definitely not speedy it and it is unlikely I would bring it to WS:CV absent some external reason. I'd be more concerned with hosting the scan on Commons where the Precautionary Principle (uncertainty = delete) is a pretty bright line in policy. Xover (talk) 19:46, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The ransom note by Leopold and Loeb (1924)[edit]

Leopold and Loeb's ransom note for Bobby Franks.jpg

@Billinghurst: because you transcribed a work on this murder case in the past. I was going to enter a transcription of this notable ransom note by Leopold and Loeb, which is on Wikimedia Commons. However, it would almost certainly qualify as an unpublished work, so the rules may be different. According to c:Template:PD-US-unpublished, 1.) This work wouldn't apply to the death pre-1951 rule, because while Loeb died in 1936, Leopold died in 1971, which is after 1951. 2.) A pseudonym is used, so I guess it'd actually apply to the third note, which is that it should have been created before 1901. It wasn't.

So my unfortunate conclusion is that this note is not in the public domain in the US. Unless its publication of the note in newspapers and the like counts as publication...but I don't think that Leopold and Loeb themselves endorsed any of that, and I don't know that the newspapers in that case could be considered the copyright holders per se of the note. What do you think? If this is determined here to be still in copyright, we should bring the discussion to Wikimedia Commons and have them delete the image file. PseudoSkull (talk) 14:56, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • It was as well printed and reprinted to have found its way to The Loeb–Leopold Case (1926); which, being published after the trial, prints public record material. Criminals cannot claim their illegal acts as legitimate for infringement (counter)claims, anyhow. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 16:54, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@PseudoSkull: I have transcribed a lot of works for myself, and others in passing, over the years so expecting me to remember little things that I did can be pushing my recall.

The upload comment on the file mentioned says "Chicago Daily News" so I am guessing it was printed at the time. It is one of those works over which I wouldn't normally fuss about copyright. The heirs can submit a DCMA request, and see how it goes with WMF legal, IMNSHO. — billinghurst sDrewth 23:05, 26 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Some of the notes by the Author:Zodiac Killer were uploaded under {{PD-Disavowed}}. Not sure this template applies here (or even if we want to encourage use it on enWS) but could be worth knowing about? —Beleg Tâl (talk) 14:48, 27 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Beleg Tâl: I placed the template on the transcription of the ransom note. However, I agree something else should preferably be used. Would you say that enforcing a copyright on a work that was made illegally in the first place is virtually impossible? If so, we might want a template like Template:PD-illegal-act which explains the ginormous unlikelihood of a work made as a criminal act having any copyright enforced on it. (It might be appropriate to have this be a proposal in the Scriptorium because I feel like it's a discussion with a lot of legal nuance.) PseudoSkull (talk) 18:27, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I am not sure that illegal acts are not copyrightable, see Eldar Haber’s treatise published by Yale Law School. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 22:11, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Indeed. The copyright could conceivably be confiscated, as could any actual proceeds, by a court; but there is no general copyright exemption for a work based on its legality or lack thereof (unless we get into terrorism and national security: there are… special cases to consider there). And {{PD-Disavowed}} is nonsense in legal terms, and should not be used except in extremely exceptional circumstances (and I can't think of a good valid example off hand). That a suspected author has disavowed a work simply makes it anonymous, and follows the copyright rules for anonymous works; and if they have acknowledged authorship then they are the author and needs to make a legally valid and binding dedication to the public domain or release the work with a compatible license. {{PD-Disavowed}} tries to pretend that the mere assertion that someone is the author is sufficient to make it so, and that their denial ("disavowal") of authorship is the same as a valid dedication to the public domain.
Oh, and enforcing a copyright on a work that was "made illegally" (I presume we mean "produced in the commission of a crime" or "which is evidence of a crime") is neither impossible nor even particularly difficult. If the crime was notorious you may have trouble because fair use reduces the market for your copyrights, but otherwise all you have to do is sue infringers or enter into licensing contracts. Typically after you get out of jail, but that's unrelated to the validity or enforceability of the copyright. Xover (talk) 13:09, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Has it ever seen publication authorised by the authors? If not then it is unpublished (newspapers get fair use exemptions, and public records are accessible, but none of that affects copyright). That it was published under a pseudonym isn't really relevant since the real authors are known and have been since shortly after it was written. Xover (talk) 15:16, 30 September 2021 (UTC)[reply]
"Specifically, publication occurs when one or more copies or phonorecords are distributed to a member of the public who is not subject to any express or implied restrictions concerning the disclosure of the content of that work." Copyright Compendium III, 1905.1 Distribution to the Public. There was no restrictions included in that note regarding its disclosure, nor is it reasonable to read implied restrictions into something like a ransom note. Having it published is a normal reaction, and if Leopold or Loeb wanted to use the force of the law to stop that, I'd think they were obliged to say so.
Also, cf. "DANJAQ LLC MGM UA v. Kevin O'Conovan McClory". They've had 95 years to object to the continuing exploitation of this note, and we are at great disadvantage due to what agreements Leopold or Loeb may have made, informally or formally.
Finally, we're putting in a lot of argument for something that's been published for a long time, that has no economic worth, and de minimis non curat lex.--Prosfilaes (talk) 08:03, 1 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Much as I hate to disagree with you on matters like this… While you can make an argument based on level of risk versus amount of effort expended, claiming de minimis specifically here is stretching the concept when we're using all of the work and not as an incidental part of our own creative contribution. And why in the world would we assume any more "intent to publish" for a ransom note—documenting a criminal act—than any normal letter? The doctrine of laches is an affirmative defence, so the mere assertion of it presupposes and admits both the existence of a copyright and our infringement of it. Planning in advance to make use of a laches defence thus makes the infringement wilful, and unclean hands is a bar to a valid laches defence even if it would otherwise meet the criteria. Which this wouldn't, because the clock doesn't start until the owners of the copyright become aware of the infringement, which, barring a lawsuit I'm unaware of, has not yet happened. There is also no reasonable argument to be made that the owner's delay prejudices us in any measurable way, neither evidentially nor economically. But even worse is that, as an affirmative defence, much like fair use, latches would protect us but not our re-users. Even in Danjaq v. McClory there is no question as to latches invalidating or otherwise affecting the copyright itself, only McClury's ability to gain equitable relief for the alleged infringement of it, for the specific alleged instances of infringement by the specific named parties. Xover (talk) 12:47, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
It's not about intent to publish. It's about "distributed to a member of the public who is not subject to any express or implied restrictions concerning the disclosure of the content of that work." The receiver of the note was under no express restrictions about disclosure, and notices like this are regularly published, putting to doubt any claims about implied restrictions. I'd feel that any demand or threat to a hostile party would lack that "implicit restriction", and certainly one which public policy would against prohibiting the publication of. That's not a full-throated PD-Illegal; just that if you get a note about an illegal act, the implication should be that you should publish it, not hide it, and the copyright law read at the time that if there was no implication the receiver should not further distribute it, it was published.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:48, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Laches may not apply to us, but note that Danjaq v. McClory was clearly not limited to past infringements; laches were applied to the 1999 movie The World Is Not Enough, for which this litigation, started in 1997-1998, was clearly timely. That ruling didn't leave any door open for McClory to sue Danjaq for future infringements.--Prosfilaes (talk) 23:48, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I would expect that while sending the letter doesn't convey copyright ownership, it does convey an implicit license to publish it since there is no expectation of privacy in this context as would affect a personal letter. It would seem similar to me as sending to a newspaper editor or magazine, we wouldn't say that a letter written in 1910 to a newspaper wasn't published because we can't find a written agreement conveying the right to publication. So Leopold and Loeb gave an implicit right to publication and the copyright would then have expired without the registration / renewal after it was published. MarkLSteadman (talk) 23:36, 3 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Basically, I agree with the analysis above. Mailing a note to members of the public causes publication because no implicit restrictions (such as a pre-existing relationship), and unlike other examples, such a mailing a manuscript to a publisher covered by "limited distribution": "to a definitely selected group and for a limited purpose", any purpose here is criminal and not a valid purpose and therefore ineligible for limited distribution protection. MarkLSteadman (talk) 17:39, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]


As mentioned in a previous discussion on this page, this template is pretty much legal nonsense. Is there any way to fix it and retain the affected works? The works primarily affected by this template are Instruction and Advice for the Young Bride, a work that purports to have been written in 1894 but which is believed by many to be a 1964 hoax; and the writings of the Zodiac Killer (fl. 1968-1969) whose identity is not known. —Beleg Tâl (talk) 13:24, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The Zodiac Killer letters are all scan-backed and have various licenses on Commons; they might be hostable under {{PD-US-no-notice}} since they were published before 1977. I have no idea how this would be affected by the fact that the letters were published in newspapers and police files, and not all of them with the consent of the author. —Beleg Tâl (talk) 13:28, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • The Instruction falls under this restriction quite readily; for the Zodiac Killer letters, they are probably considered “published;” but are likely under this doctrine, as well. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 13:35, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • I don't understand the "published without consent of the author." They were sent to newspapers with the clear intent to be published, but were not published with the correct copyright notice / registration. For more recent works where registration isn't an issue we can get into this debate when it happens, but I don't understand why we would say a letter to the editor printed in 1905 is under copyright because the author didn't consent to have it published when he or she mailed it to the newspaper by signing an explicit consent to publish statement. You mail letters to newspapers to have them published! MarkLSteadman (talk) 16:35, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Beleg Tâl: I can see the argument for "implicit consent" in the sense that if you're going to commit a serious crime like that, you probably know full well that if you ever get caught and evidence is obtained, the evidence will be published in news reports and the like, because the news reports on that sort of stuff all the time; it's their primary source of income. I'd think that's just common sense; even for the most insane of criminals I'd expect they know this. That's not necessarily a legal argument on my part, but just a comment on the psychological bit of it that I'd like to leave here. PseudoSkull (talk) 17:25, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Oh yes for sure, and I have no moral qualms about disseminating these works freely online; but I also have to uphold our copyright policies, and I don't understand the legal ramifications of such a circumstance well enough to determine whether Wikisource can be the place where such texts are hosted. Fortunately, most of the works in question should be well handled by lack of copyright notice. —Beleg Tâl (talk) 17:35, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Deletion. Instruction and the Zodiac letters to the newspapers / public officials should all be tagged {{PD-US-no-notice}} since they were published pre-1989 with no notice or registration within 5 years. Any remaining works we should discuss individually. MarkLSteadman (talk) 17:15, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Comment: According to what we have transcribed at Instruction and Advice for the Young Bride (assuming it is correct; it is unfortunately not scan-backed), this would fall into the public domain for one of two reasons: 1.) It was actually published in 1894, and therefore is in the public domain for being so old. 2.) It was published in 1964 without a proper copyright notice—assuming in this case it is a hoax, the copyright notice of 1894 doesn't count since it is decades off the actual publication date. To retain a copyright, it would have needed a stated copyright date of 1964. PseudoSkull (talk) 18:59, 4 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The Inevitable Revolution[edit]

The link to the page on archive says copyright Robert Sampson 1981. Given it is an anarchist publication it may have been released under a license... MarkLSteadman (talk) 09:01, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]


The uploaded file provides contradictory data (the file says "2010" while the publication date of 1910 is likely the original Russian.) With no author or license in the file. So although they may have meant to release in the public domain AFAICT they haven't actually so I am not sure it is usable. It is not a very long work so it might just be easier if someone here speaks Russian to translate it under a clear license. MarkLSteadman (talk) 09:16, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Symbol delete vote.svg Delete The source of the text is here. Looks like EarthlyFireflies uploaded a lot of Tolstoy translations to IA which are all over the Internet (I bet we have more of their versions here). Their website is a mess but it looks like these are semi-original translations based on other existing translations. They uploaded their translations to IA with a PD release, so they are within our copyright policy provided that they are truly original translations - but at the same time if they are truly original then they are self-published and fail WS:WWIBeleg Tâl (talk) 17:32, 5 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Sir Charles Grandison[edit]

First published in 1980. No evidence provided that it was not copyrighted. Languageseeker (talk) 05:18, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Ugh, why does the USA have stupid rules for posthumous works. Jane Austen wrote this over 200 years ago, surely it's PD somehowBeleg Tâl (talk) 21:07, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Beleg Tâl: This work is likely copyrighted, but it would be helpful to know where it was first published. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 22:39, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Copyright David Astor 1981. Jubilee Books, Burford Oxfordshire. Which implies UK copyright until 2032 and in the US until 2048... MarkLSteadman (talk) 23:20, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
One of the ways to work around this for all of Austen's Juvenelia would be to proofread the original manuscripts that are in the PD. Languageseeker (talk) 23:29, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Languageseeker: This is not true. The publication did not give copyright to merely editorial changes, but also to the entire content of the manuscript. We could as legally host manuscripts of novels which are recently published; the copyright of a published work supersedes that of the unpublished manuscript from which it derives. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 23:38, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • MarkLSteadman, Beleg Tâl: Assuming the above 1981 publication is the original, and assuming also U.K. (no U.S.) publication, it is copyrighted. Under the same rules as the below case, it is copyrighted in the U.K. until January 1, 2032. This means it was copyrighted in the U.K. on the relevant date for URAA restoration, meaning copyright was restored in the U.S. According to the usual chart, the U.S. copyright expires on the later of December 31, 1887 and December 31, 2047, which is the latter; thus, U.S. copyright expires January 1, 2048. In short: this work is copyright in the U.K. until 2032, and in the U.S. until 2048. This is all predicate on the released edition being published with the consent of Austen’s estate, of course; without such consent, this work was published illegally, and copyright protection would not start until legal publication occurred. If it was not legally published before 2003, it is in the public domain. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 23:34, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • It's at times like these where I really miss Wikilivres. :/ —Beleg Tâl (talk) 13:15, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The Beautifull Cassandra[edit]

Source states that this was published in 2018 by Princeton University Press. Should be a clear copyvio. Languageseeker (talk) 05:20, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Quite possibly some of the content in this is still in copyright, but even if it wasn't, the version we have is inherently incomplete (it's at least missing the intro) and if we were to complete it it would end up being a copyright violation. Plus, you don't know whether anything in this edition was changed in a manner which could make it copyrightable. So I think we should Symbol delete vote.svg Delete this one and scan back the original, or at least a pre-1926 version, or one otherwise in the public domain. PseudoSkull (talk) 10:37, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Comment: Unfortunately, a little research I've done into this piece of juvenilia indicates there may very well not even be an "original" to scan from, and therefore may have been unpublished until 2018. However, since the version we have was published after 2004, I think the base content could still be considered in the PD (although, I don't recommend trusting the version we have is even accurate, since we don't have it scan-backed to anything usable by our standards). PseudoSkull (talk) 10:42, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Symbol keep vote.svg Keep We can use {{text removed}} for copyrighted introductions, annotations, etc. I unfortunately can't find a scan of any published editions, though there seem to be a 1933 and a 1954 edition of the Works of Jane Austen that include it. Also, there is a scan of the original manuscript of Volume the First (the unpublished collection that this work is from) available here. —Beleg Tâl (talk) 20:48, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
This 1933 is the first published edition of Volume the First, and if we can get a scan of it that would be perfect. (Assuming that a 1933 posthumous work is PD in the US, which it should be?) There's a copy for sale at AbeBooks for US$42 if someone with a scanner is interested. —Beleg Tâl (talk) 20:52, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
There is a fight about that... see the discussion about the Adams letters [7]. However it is very likely no-notice / non-renewal. Note that an unpublished, posthumous work is copyrighted until 2040 in the UK [8]. MarkLSteadman (talk) 21:23, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Beleg Tâl: The Google Books scan shows Oxford as the location of publication. Assuming no other publications (which would allow for U.S. law to take hold), we must first determine whether the work is copyrighted in the U.K. According to Mark’s flowchart, the work’s copyright in the U.K. expired in 1984, and was thus not restored by the URAA (and is PD-1996). If the work is considered a U.S. work, it either had a notice and was not renewed (and is thus PD-US-no renewal) or was published without a notice (and is thus PD-US-no notice). This assumes the 1933 publication was the first authorized publication of Volume the First, and (for ease) the first authorized publication of all the works which constitute Volume the First. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 22:39, 7 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • A quick search through the Project Gutenberg renewal listings show no renewal for Austen from around 1933.--Prosfilaes (talk) 03:08, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Index:Down And Out In Paris And London (IA DownAndOutInParisAndLondonGeorgeOrwell1933).pdf[edit]

Work is explicitly listed as renewed on relevant author page. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 09:57, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The renewal is for the US. As Orwell died in 1950, works that were not renewed are however potentially, PD-old-70 in some other jurisdictions. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 10:09, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
His works are PD in (most?) places outside the US. It's possible some of his works that aren't 95 years old are PD in the US, but it seems likely they're either renewed or not first published in the US.
Note, before anyone gets in, this has nothing at all to do with the URAA. It's being treated as US work under US law and never needed restoration.--Prosfilaes (talk) 11:19, 8 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
what is the date of first US publication? Slowking4Farmbrough's revenge 01:38, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
1933 (HathiTrust) with (Renewal: R265227) MarkLSteadman (talk) 01:47, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
You can see a scan of a 1933 New York edition here and a 1933 London edition here. Symbol delete vote.svg Delete MarkLSteadman (talk) 02:02, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Undelete Luceafărul[edit]

Previous discussion: WS:CV#Luceafărul.

This is a 19th-century Romanian poem by Mihai Eminescu (1850–1889), translated into English by Petre Grimm (1888–1944), and by all indications (but no hard evidence) first published in Bulgaria at some point before Grimm's death. I have also been unable to find hard evidence of, but choose to accept Carl Lindberg's assertion in the previous discussion, that Bulgaria was pma. 50 until their 1996 revised copyright act. That means the Bulgarian copyright on the translation expired at the end of 1994, and it was thus in the public domain in its home country on the URAA date (1 January 1996). Since there is no evidence (or reason to suspect) the translation was published with the requisite US copyright notice, nor any record of registration or renewal, it is {{PD-US-no notice}} or, at worst, {{PD-US-no renewal}}.

There are uncertainties here, so your personal risk tolerance will be the decisive factor for whether we undelete it (the previous delete was precautionary rather than based on evidence of copyright, and was coloured by the existence of Wikilivres as an "easy out"). Under c:COM:PRP it probably wouldn't fly, but for etter or worse enWS doesn't apply PRP. If someone could pinpoint first publication of this translation, and preferably find a scan, we could eliminate all the uncertain factors.

Pinging contributors to the previous discussion: Prosfilaes, Beleg Tâl, Clindberg.

PS. I have not undeleted the page for this discussion, since I don't think that's needed, but I can do so if an issue comes up. Xover (talk) 13:58, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • Xover: Don’t you mean PD-1996? The other templates don’t apply to non-U.S. works. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 14:20, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    Yes, that's probably exactly what I mean. :) Xover (talk) 15:12, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    Technically they do -- if a foreign work was published with notice and (if published before 1964) filed U.S. renewals, then their U.S. copyright was never lost, so there was nothing for the URAA to restore. Outside of books, this hardly ever happened, so for most works we assume they were published without notice. Books were often different, though. On the other hand, book renewals are very easy to search for given Stanford's book renewals database. I don't find anything by Grimm or Eminescu there, so I don't think that can be an issue here. Carl Lindberg (talk) 15:32, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • The original discussion was about Romania, not Bulgaria -- for Romania's situation, please see the note at w:Wikipedia:Non-U.S._copyrights#endnote_tab_romania. (Bulgaria was also 50pma, but not sure how that is relevant here.) I'm not sure we ever found any publication information for this. Luceafărul (poem) does not mention Grimm's translation; it mentions another from 1978 being the first English translation, which is obviously wrong given the one we had from Grimm. There was a 1938 Romanian book published in English by Cartea Românească called Poems. No idea if this poem was in there, but seems likely. If that is indeed the source of the translation, then U.S. copyright was lost by no renewal (if there even was a notice in the first place), and (being PD-Romania in January 1996) was also PD-1996. The only way U.S. copyright still exists is if it was first published with notice between 1964 and 2003, or without notice between 1989 and 2003. Or, I guess, if it was first published earlier in a country other than Romania which had longer terms in 1996. Symbol support vote.svg Support, I think. Carl Lindberg (talk) 15:32, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Google Books Claims a 1992 first publication date for the Grimm translation in Poems pf Mihai Eminescu - A Bilingual Edition by Kurt w. Treptow, and Google Books specifically says that it wasn't in the 1938 collection. MarkLSteadman (talk) 22:38, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • A 1992 date is almost certainly wrong, since it was published or at least quoted in a 1964 volume of Rumanian Review.--Prosfilaes (talk) 09:15, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
      • The 1964 Rumanian Review sounds pretty good if we can get scans of it since it then would then be clearly PD-1996... 11:49, 10 October 2021 (UTC)
        • I'm not seeing the Rumanian Review in Google Books today, but a random couple of lines ("The water in that very spot Moves rolling many rings") is bringing up Lirica românească: Antologie bilingvă de poezie (1972), Luceafărul Hypérion: Lucifer Hyperion (1964) and Volume 1 of Poezii: echivalente eminesciene in limbile engleza, franceza, germana, rusa si spaniola (1971) I'd like scans and a positive source here, but the text we have was clearly published before 1992 in several sources.--Prosfilaes (talk) 12:52, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
          • Here is a link to the Rumanian Review Google Books. MarkLSteadman (talk) 13:12, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
            • That contains clauses from all throughout the poem, with the exception of several stanzas in the area where Prosfilaes' search came from -- I'm guessing there was a problem with the scan and/or OCR on one or two pages. So that sure seems like the entire poem. Unsure if there was a copyright notice on it -- but no match for the term "copyright". I have not been able to see if that publication cited a further source. Carl Lindberg (talk) 16:14, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Undelete Dettmer v. Landon (799 F.2d 929)[edit]

This is not, as claimed, redundant; the deleted case was the appellate court decision, and the original case was from the district court. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 16:33, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

I am not sure why the proposal was made among the copyright discussions, as copyright was not the reason of deletion. However, it really seems that it was some mistake. The page was deleted with the rationale "Redundant to Dettmer v. Landon". Having a quick look at both texts I would say that they are really different and so it does not seem to me that the deleted one is redundant. Besides that, there are several pages linked to the deleted page, including Dettmer v. Landon. So I guess it must have been a mistake and I have undeleted the page for this reason. Just for sure I am pinging User:Hesperian who deleted the page to check it. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 20:59, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Thanks for the ping. I did thousands and thousands of X v Y disambiguations at that time, so probably it was just a lapse of attention on my part. Hesperian 23:16, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

USA publication, no copyright notice[edit]

I have a book. Published in Philadelphia, by Lippincott and no London or Edinburgh or etc on the title page. The author, a Brit. (1830-1894). The artist, also a Brit. (1867-1939). No date anywhere in the book, just a print notice on the back of the title page.

So, then I have another book that contains the artists bibliography which claims this book was published in 1933.

I looked around at the copyright stuff here (which was nice and easy to read and mostly about published works, so thanks for that) and I am pretty sure I can put it here, at least and probably on the commons also.

I am just making sure before I go through the work and start to upload. Thanks--RaboKarbakian (talk) 21:30, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

@RaboKarbakian: If the book was originally published in the US, it wouldn't matter to us if it were written by British people; US laws apply completely there. However, things might be more complicated if your version was not the original edition, in which case I'm pretty sure that for US law to apply, it would need to have been published in the US only 30 days after the UK publication, which, for works that are this old, is extremely difficult and sometimes impossible to prove. Note that pretty much everything published in the UK after 1925 would be protected in the US because of the URAA agreement—1926+70=1996. PseudoSkull (talk) 21:46, 9 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
It always helps to mention names and titles to let us help look up fine details.
It's largely theoretical, but it's possible your volume is missing a copyright notice that virtually all copies has. I'd check the copyright renewals for books, and possibly (but much more tediously) the illustration renewals, which if they existed, might indicate your copy is a legally irrelevant exception.
Short of such renewal, the author is irrelevant; the text is PD in the US and UK. The illustrations, if they were first published in 1926-1933 outside the US, are likely copyright in the US. If they were first published before 1926 (or 1927 in two months) or were first published in the US, they won't be.--Prosfilaes (talk) 04:29, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Prosfilaes: It is Goblin Market by Christina Rossetti, illustrated by Arthur Rackham. All of the pages that are not blank are there. If you would like to look it up, it will be good to know. Without the library book with the bibliography, I would not have known the date at all and I thought to keep it hypothetical because, the rules should apply regardless. But, you are right about being able to look it up and such. So, I thank you.--RaboKarbakian (talk) 04:46, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I see no renewals. On the other hand, some part of me guesses that's because it wasn't a licensed publication. w:Goblin Market shows UK publications about the same time, so arguably we should wait until 2029. But it sounds like the type of thing certain people around here have been able to research as to a more precise publication date.--Prosfilaes (talk) 08:28, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Maurice, or The Fisher's Cot[edit]

Another one of these annoying, possibly unpublished works until recently so having copyright... "The manuscript was lost until Cristina Dazzi discovered it in the summer of 1997 in the home of the Dazzi family" so it may have a first publication date of 1998 and hence copyright until 2048.... MarkLSteadman (talk) 03:26, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • The 1998 publication only counts if it was with the permission of the author or her literary heir. I haven’t looked over the records too closely, but assuming the literary rights of Mary Shelley passed with her husband’s title (as a rough guide), the presumed literary heir in 1997/1998 (and presently) is the viscount de l’Isle. It does not appear to me (although I have not taken a look at the published edition) that this book was published with his consent, or with the consent of the appropriate heir. Thus, this work was not legitimately published before 2003, meaning it is PD-US-unpublished. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 03:43, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • Hence the annoying piece... It was published with the curator of the Keats-Shelley house, biographer etc. so they may have been able to track down the requisite permission ... MarkLSteadman (talk) 03:58, 10 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Index:Calends of Cairo.pdf[edit]

A UK work published 1933 by an author who died in 1935, and hence not PD in the US until 95 years from publication.--Prosfilaes (talk) 01:47, 11 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Symbol delete vote.svg Delete. Although I am not sure about the 1933 (The page itself says the work was published 1931 which is probably derived from a prefaced note dated by that year), it is definitely still copyrighted and so should be deleted. --Jan Kameníček (talk) 10:16, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment This was previously discussed at commons:Commons:Village pump/Copyright/Archive/2021/10#File:Calends of Cairo.pdf. I don't have an opinion on whether the index should be deleted, but I figured it was worth dropping a link. —CalendulaAsteraceae (talkcontribs) 19:33, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]


This work is tagged as a pre-1926 translation but the author pages says 1930 on the translation so we should at least tag the translation correctly. It is certainly possible that it was in the public domain if first published in the USSR on the URAA date, but as Emile Burns was based in the UK I suspect that it was published in the UK (e.g. record here), and not in the public domain on the URAA date. MarkLSteadman (talk) 11:23, 12 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • The Burns translation was made from the 1894 edition, but was not published in that year. From what I can see, this is the first edition, and it was published c. 1935. There is no copyright notice, meaning it is PD-US-no notice (for the translation). TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 13:22, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • Note that it was published in the Handbook of Marxism (1936) (IA) where it says Martin Lawerence Ltd. 1935 and it has a copyright renewal notice (Renewal: R400606) with US publication data of 1939 MarkLSteadman (talk) 14:30, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

File:Majulah Singapura.pdf[edit]

The file is a stave of Majulah Singapura, the national anthem of Singapore composed and written by Zubir Said, who died on 1987. Per Singaporean copyright law, the song is copyrighted for at least 50 years after his death (As Singaporean copyright protection was extended to 70 years pma in 2004). This means the song remains locally copyrighted on the URAA date of 1996-01-01. The file is therefore copyrightable in the United States, and fails the copyright requirement for English Wikisource works.廣九直通車 (talk) 09:57, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

One should also note that Section 197(3)(b) of the Copyright Act, which is mentioned in {{Legislation-SGGov}}, only cover government works. As Zubir Said is not a government official or employee, the section (along with {{PD-EdictGov}}) do not apply.廣九直通車 (talk) 10:49, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
  • Keep. This is PD-EdictGov. It was enacted into law as the Third Schedule to the Singapore Arms and Flag and National Anthem Rules, and was likely enacted earlier (although I could not find good on-line sources to 1960s Singapore law). Whether or not it was included then, it is included now, and is thus in the public domain. TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 13:22, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    • Withdraw Many thanks for your explanation, so you mean an edict that contains works created by non-officials still fulfill {{PD-EdictGov}}?廣九直通車 (talk) 13:41, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
      • 廣九直通車: The wording of the template needs to be updated (in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Georgia v. PRO, but, yes, when once a work becomes a law (or schedule to a rule, in this case), it is an “edict of government,” and thus in the public domain. (As an example, in the U.S., many laws are not written by the officials who pass them, but by interest groups who want the laws passed; and these groups cannot claim a copyright interest in the laws if they are past, because they are “edicts of government.”) TE(æ)A,ea. (talk) 14:11, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    I originally uploaded the document under PD-EdictGov for the reason stated above by TE(æ)A,ea. I must agree though that the upload of the sheet music alone would raise some concerns.
    Perhaps to ensure we don't have this confusion, we could instead upload the full document of the Singapore Arms and Flag and National Anthem Rules and proofread it as such? I can keep the transcription for my own reference in transcribing the sheet music within the document. Dafatskin (talk) 01:30, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    Yes check.svg Done uploaded.廣九直通車 (talk) 07:59, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
    @Dafatskin: Transcription finished. I'll be grateful if you can help with proofreading the text, thanks!廣九直通車 (talk) 08:43, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Pennsylvania Department of Corrections v. Yeskey[edit]

Nominated for speedy deletion by TE(æ)A,ea. with the rationale "copyrighted summary of case, not actual syllabus", but I think it might be better to discuss it here. I have found the text e.g. at . --Jan Kameníček (talk) 10:07, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Whether One May Flee from a Deadly Plague[edit]

Translation of a work by Martin Luther, done by Carl Julius Schindler (1901–1996). Published in the US in 1968 with copyright notice, putting the US copyright term at 1968 + 95 = end of 2063(!) :-(

Unsure if this translation is new for this work, or if it's a reprint of an earlier translation. Schindler appears to have more than one unrenewed book in his oeuvre, so if the latter, we may be in with a chance.

Courtesy ping @Dafatskin: sorry! Inductiveloadtalk/contribs 15:32, 16 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

  • Agree, unfortunately there is no sign of an earlier uncopyrighted edition of the translation, so unless we discover some, it will have to be deleted :-( --Jan Kameníček (talk) 08:32, 17 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]


One of the authors is - Author:Frank Ezra Adcock (1886–1968) So this is not PD-UK, The license at Commons claims this is PD-US, but I am disputing the rationale on the basis of [[9]] which claims "All rights Reserved", CUP is a UK publisher, and also on the basis of [[10]] which claims this was the 1928 reprint in Great Britain.

The work MIGHT be PD-US one the basis of publication date however, as this seems to be a 1928 reprint of a 1924 work. It's not clear if there was any substantial revision done for the reprint. The ideal situation would thus potentially be file localisation here, but these scans seems to be missing pages (a non copyright issue). ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 08:06, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

If there was substantial revision, it would be an edition, not a reprint. Reprint generally just means they either fed the stereotype plates (if they invested in a set) back into the presses, or, if they failed to predict the demand and didn't have the stereotypes, either reset the type (£££) or photostatically reproduced it (which only was invented in ~1906). So I'd be happy to call it 1924 for the purposes of copyright.
Furthermore, ResidentScholar also concluded at File:Thecambridgeancienthistoryvol1.djvu that this was PD in the UK in 1996 due to it being "work for hire", since CUP doesn't defend the copyright. I'm not sure I'm completely convinced that presence on the IA is enough to make that call, and also I think the work for hire term is still PMA+70, it's just not the author who holds the rights So if you're employing a writer and want to get the max copyright for your buck, go for young, healthy ones!. So I'm not really sure that's a "safe" conclusion.
Nevertheless, if there are worries, maybe Index:The Cambridge Ancient History - Volume 1.djvu would be be a better bet, since it's 1923, and under a US publisher. Inductiveloadtalk/contribs 12:26, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]


Identifed a cover image in good faith here :-

but subsequently found more information on the artist,, The cover image is not necessarily PD-UK, so a removal of the relevant edit made in good faith appreciated. I'll leave redaction of the scans to an admin's discretion. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 10:34, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

This is an 1898 work (the cover image is even dated '98), so it's clearly PD in the US. Does it need localising (as a joint London/NY publication)? Inductiveloadtalk/contribs 11:34, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Localising for a single cover image seems to be the best option. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 11:43, 18 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Index:Multilevel algorithms for nonlinear optimization.djvu[edit]

1994 Contractor report for NASA, license at Commons is incorrect. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 10:17, 21 October 2021 (UTC)[reply]