Fair use images

Quicker deletion of non-compliant images proposed

The long-awaited arrival of image undeletion (see archived story) is already leading to new developments in Wikipedia policies. A proposed policy amendment is now up for discussion in an attempt to push for better compliance with image use policy, especially with respect to fair use.

The proposal was presented as an amendment to the fair use criteria by Ta bu shi da yu. Originally suggested back in February, it would shorten the time period for deletion of newly uploaded images if they claim fair use but fail to satisfy the criteria or provide a supporting rationale. After being dormant for some time, the idea got renewed momentum now that image undeletion is possible, so that erroneous deletions can easily be fixed.

Currently the proposed amendment would provide that non-compliant images can be deleted 48 hours after giving notice to the editor who uploaded the image (if the situation is not corrected in that time). At present the speedy deletion criteria call for a waiting period of seven days before deletion. The amendment would only apply to newly uploaded images; earlier images would still be subject to the current procedure.

A discussion about the proposal is being conducted at Wikipedia:Fair use criteria/Amendment/Consensus. A number of supporters cited the availability of image undeletion as a reason to step up removal of inappropriate images, with a few adding their distaste for relying on fair use images at all in a free content encyclopedia. Some concerns were raised about the time period, pointing out that an image might get deleted if the uploader was merely away for a weekend and didn't see the notice. Jamesday opposed the proposal and argued that virtually all uses on Wikipedia would legally qualify as fair use. In response, Carnildo disputed whether legality alone was the issue, pointing to a number of Wikipedia's criteria for fair use as creating additional restrictions based on policy considerations. Discussion of the amendment is scheduled to continue through 13 July.

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