Guild Wars Wiki talk:Copyrighted content

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Fair use[edit]

Emily recently posted a clarification on the fair use issue, so I suggest we add a short line about it in this policy, to further clarify. There have been quite some discussions about fair use material, so I think it would be good to mention it here now that we have an official statement from Anet. My suggestions would be to change

Content from other, non-GFDL fansites to
Content from other, non-GFDL sites. This also includes non-Guild Wars content under fair use

or add a new bullet under that first heading, saying something like

Non-Guild Wars content under Fair use

Any other/better suggestions? - anja talk 17:21, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

  • Content from other, non-GFDL sources.
  • Content from any source under Fair use, except content owned by ArenaNet or NCsoft.
poke | talk 17:25, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I think Anja's first idea is clearer. -- User indochine dsk tree.png Indochine talk 17:33, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I have a problem with that, Guild Wars content would also be something like Fanfics, and even if that Fanfic is not GFDL we could use it under Fair use - according to the first suggestion, but that would be wrong. And as other GFDL sites maybe allow content under Fair use, it would be wrong to say that we can copy anything from there as it is a GFDL site. poke | talk 18:00, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I know people often don't treat it this way, but "fair use" is really tied to the usage context rather than just the content. So I suggest something like: Content from other, non-GFDL sites (regardless of whether fair use applies). --Rezyk 18:08, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
replace "sites" for "sources" (to include non-websites) and I'm fine with it :) poke | talk 18:14, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I really like Rezyk's suggestion. More clear, and more correct probably, than mine :) - anja talk 18:35, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
implemented. poke | talk 20:54, 3 July 2008 (UTC)


moved from Guild Wars Wiki talk:Policy

Due to legal issues involving attribution and the GFDL, I think we should have an explicit policy on merging. -- Gordon Ecker 03:33, 26 July 2008 (UTC)

I don't know if we need a policy or not, but a document telling how a correct merge is supposed to be done would definitely be good. With examples. - anja talk 07:50, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
This sounds like what is needed is gww:how to merge, not a merging policy. --Xeeron 12:08, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
We can't. We're not a sovereign entity. No matter what we deside, we still have to follow the copyright rules. Backsword 12:55, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Has any wiki anywhere ever had any drama over copyright issues? I mean people tried to claim copyright when GW was taken over and that went no-where. I don't even recall someone complaining about someone breaching copyright on any of the content on the wiki. 14:14, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Is any other wiki hosted by a company which uses the wiki in a commercial project like Guild Wars?
Most wikis are created by communities only without having the problem of needing to be that strict about copyright, but as ANet gives us the rules about copyrighted content, we simply have to stick to it. poke | talk 14:33, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
If it needs to be in policy form, it belongs at GWW:COPYRIGHT; I doubt a separate policy is needed. Then, if necessary, we can have a "Help:Merging" page to show how it should be done. --User Brains12 Spiral.png Brains12 \ talk 16:00, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Guild Wars Wiki:Copyrights isn't a policy, it's a legal notice, however we could have a copyright policy (or a copyright guideline, or both) which would provide rules and procedures in order to prevent and deal with copyright issues. -- Gordon Ecker 04:22, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
GWW:COPYRIGHT goes to Guild Wars Wiki:Copyrighted content, which is policy. - Tanetris 05:47, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
Expanding that policy should be more straightforward, unless this new policy can have a greater scope than just on merging. -- User Sig.png 01:31, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
Oh yeah, I forgot about that one. I think we should take this discussion there. -- Gordon Ecker 04:49, 31 July 2008 (UTC)


Is cc-by-sa compatible with GFDL? --User Brains12 Spiral.png Brains12 \ talk 00:21, 19 August 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia says no, but i would ask a lawyer instead :).--Fighterdoken 00:24, 19 August 2008 (UTC)
Well that's where I got my 'information' from when I was checking up on a possible copyvio on some Tango icons, but Aiiane and Poke told me on IRC that it is compatible. :/ --User Brains12 Spiral.png Brains12 \ talk 00:28, 19 August 2008 (UTC)
This article makes clear that items cannot be ported from GFDL to cc-by or cc-by-sa. CC-by to GFDL was allowed, though.
This article mentions that cc-sa or cc-by-sa has not been compatible with GFDL up to this point. I think it's safe to say that cc-by-sa 3.0 allows compatibility, but i got a headache after all the legal mumbo-jumbo that appears on the second article, so i will leave for someone else to check it.--Fighterdoken 01:51, 19 August 2008 (UTC)
I read the full text of the GFDL, and it's basically saying the same things as the cc-by-sa 3.0 licence.. Whether they're compatible I don't really know - cc-by-sa 3.0 does say that "You may Distribute or Publicly Perform an Adaptation only under the terms of: ...snip... (iv) a Creative Commons Compatible License" (Section 4b), but however, this page says no licences have been certified as CC-Compatible. Best to ask the lawyers to look at this one... -- User indochine dsk tree.png Indochine talk 13:55, 19 August 2008 (UTC)
I believe it would be incompatible due to the cc-by-sa 3.0's stricter attribution requirements. -- Gordon Ecker 01:14, 20 August 2008 (UTC)
Gordon is correct. Attribution is the fundamental point of that license, and it is not compatible with ours. Backsword 17:28, 20 August 2008 (UTC)
So, when did you earn your law degree? Lord Belar 16:50, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

Changing incompatible content sources[edit]

What does the community think about changing it to: Content from other, non-GFDL sources (regardless of whether fair use applies) This includes most images from search engines and commercial websites.. It makes it longer, but if people actually read this page they may understand that they can't post any random image here.
I'd like to hear thoughts on this- as I think it may be useful but do people read this page? -- User indochine dsk tree.png Indochine talk 18:23, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

I think the problem is that people don't bother to read this policy, not that they fail to understand it.. poke | talk 21:58, 2 September 2008 (UTC)
Agreed, plus that wording excludes public domain and GPL sources :).--Fighterdoken 22:04, 2 September 2008 (UTC)


I am unsure of the way the changes of license from GFDL to CC-BY-SA that is happening in the Wikimedia world would affect the validity of some statements of this page. TulipVorlax 06:01, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

CC-BY-SA is one-way compatible to GFDL poke | talk 11:32, 21 June 2009 (UTC)
Are you sure? According to the previous discussion, content from CC-BY-SA cannot be incorporated into a GFDL work due to the GFDL's looser attribution requirements. -- User Gordon Ecker sig.png Gordon Ecker (talk) 10:42, 15 November 2009 (UTC)

General question[edit]

I have been wondering this for the last day. If for example I take this image, and in Paint add a smiley on the weird kid's face, as I have edited this photo, it doesn't violate copyright. Or is it the overall content of the content that matters? I'm asking this not because it is only for discussion, but because people can actually use this to take images from everywhere, put their name in a shadow that nobody notices, and claim copyright. Titani User Titani Ertan Sig2.jpg Ertan {{Snappy the Turtle}} 11:21, 25 August 2009 (UTC)

You cannot remove someone else's copyright by slightly changing the work yourself. When you edit something copyrighted, you have to check if the author even allows others to edit it and it isn't alone your work after it either. The original author still owns his parts of the image. poke | talk 15:28, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
See Wikipedia's derivative work article for details, particularly the section about derivative works in American law. -- User Gordon Ecker sig.png Gordon Ecker (talk) 19:31, 25 August 2009 (UTC)


Hi. I've been contacted multiple time by many users if I could release the image I took for gwiki under gfdl so they can reupload them here. I know I can't since Anet don't want that content under gfdl and I personally don't want to take the time to reupload them here under the proper liscense. Do I even have to give permission for someone else to reupload the images since they ( in my mind ) belong to Anet? --Aratak 15:32, 28 September 2009 (UTC)

If they are screenshots or something from the game, than yes, you don't own the images and as such cannot rerelease them. However everything else, such as content and graphical elements not taken from ANet are your property and you have to rerelease them (or explicitely allow them to be used). poke | talk 15:36, 28 September 2009 (UTC)

Guild wars 2 wiki?[edit]

can we use info that's posted on the guild wars2 wiki? i ask because some of the articles there have a lot of good lore that could be used in the articles here like the Mursaat vs Mursaat - User Zesbeer sig.png Zesbeer 01:03, 22 October 2009 (UTC)

Yes, the 2 wiki's are compatible. -- Wyn User Wynthyst sig icon2.png talk 01:05, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
thanks wyn. - User Zesbeer sig.png Zesbeer 01:07, 22 October 2009 (UTC)
You'd still need to provide attribution for the edits you're copying over, which is usually done by linking to the source article('s history page). If you want to be more specific than that, say for only copying one or two edits, link to the edit diffs themselves. That can be done in the edit summary, and I think it can also be done on the talk page.
Copyright details aside, be sure that the information you're copying over is relevant to this wiki - some Guild Wars 2 stuff is irrelevant to Guild Wars, which is what this wiki is for. -- pling User Pling sig.png 13:01, 22 October 2009 (UTC)

Update needed due to Wikipedia's switch to CC-BY-SA[edit]

Wikipedia switched to the CC-BY-SA license on June 15th, 2009, so any versions of Wikipedia articles after that date may not be compatible. Many newer versions of articles are also licensed under the GFDL, but some are not, so Wikipedia should no longer be used as an example of a purely GFDL wiki, however it could be used as an example of a GFDL wiki with non-GFDL content like GuildWiki. -- User Gordon Ecker sig.png Gordon Ecker (talk) 10:51, 15 November 2009 (UTC)

CC-BY-SA is one-way compatible to GFDL; so this is not really an issue, unless we want to say something about Wikipedia using our content. poke | talk 15:14, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
Have you got a source to back up that claim? According to Wikipedia's GFDL article, there is one-way compatibility from some versions of the GFDL to the CC-BY-SA 3.0 license, I haven't found anything on going from CC-BY-SA to GFDL. -- User Gordon Ecker sig.png Gordon Ecker (talk) 01:05, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
One way would be to read both licenses, but here is a link that might be enough: [1] "CC-by is one-way-compatible with GFDL - meaning that CC-by content can be used in GFDL work, by not vice-versa.".
Now the ShareAlike part of CC-BY-SA says "[...] you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one." - Given that GFDL basically requires the same things (just is more stricter on the sharing part and includes more detail on printed media), it is one-way compatible. poke | talk 08:07, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
May be worth to note, though, that as per CC-BY-SA 3.0 compatible licenses should be certified first. As of right now, it appears that no license has been certified yet, meaning that compatibility would still be on question.--Fighterdoken 01:08, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
Poke, it was one way, but that had a ending date. As it is, you can't copy from CCBYSA to ours, as the former has much harsher attibution requirments. Backsword 11:12, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
That one with the end-date was a limited offer by GFDL to be able to switch to CC-BY-SA; that offer was made for Wikipedia to switch and they used it to do it. However that doesn't affect the other way. poke | talk 11:14, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
Which is why it's not possible for us to use it. Backsword 11:29, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
Reading a bit deeper, the important part of the legal mumbo-jumbo is the definition of "compatible license", which CC states requires:
  1. Being listed on the page linked above.
  2. Being certified by CC as being simmilar.
  3. The license must work the same way as CC-BY-SA.
  4. The license allows relicensing under CC-BY-SA or compatible.
Since GFDL no longer allows relicensing, this should be enough for saying that we can't take CC-BY-SA content here.--Fighterdoken 02:45, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Well, that is some kind of recursive definition of a compatible license. If you say, GFDL applies to #1-#3, then you could argument that GFDL is compatible and it is enough, that you can relicense the stuff as GFDL - a compatible license - again.. poke | talk 07:14, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
Not really. GFDL states specifically that (and i quote): "You may copy and distribute a Modified Version of the Document under the conditions of sections 2 and 3 above, provided that you release the Modified Version under precisely this License...". As such, GFDL content can't be released under a new (simmilar) license, and thus is not compatible with CC-BY-SA.
Content cannot be relicensed, either, since the lapse for that procedure ended on August.
In resume, GFDL is specific on not allowing the relicensing of content. As such, is not compatible with CC-BY-SA, and due to this CC-BY-SA content cannot be ported to GFDL either.--Fighterdoken 07:55, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
So then the policy should be edited to reflect this, right? I'm currently working on a draft to clarify a few other things and would appreciate input on how to word the above change, as well as other things. If there are few enough problems with it I'll be moving it to a subpage of the policy within the week, hopefully. Thanks --Kyoshi (Talk) User Kyoshi sig.png 04:24, 20 January 2010 (UTC)


I have been questioning here whether there is good reason, through any policy of GWW, that a Creative Commons-licensed picture should be up for deletion because of copyright violation. I am aware that attribution wasn't given, and that can be fixed quickly; however, this dispute concerns whether it would still be up for deletion under current policy, if attribution was given (or edited in by another party than the uploader, as the case may be). The section about excluded content is rather vague about this: "...content from the following resources cannot automatically be assumed okay to copy..." The way it's stated, it sounds like basically a warning that copyright infringement is wrong. If this is meant to mean that non-GDFL-compatible content is strictly banned (which seems unlikely to me) then it should be clarified. Could someone explain how this applies, please? --Kyoshi (Talk) User Kyoshi sig.png 00:50, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Even if it sounds strict, you got the interpretation right. Anything that is not GDFL compatible (or, alternatively, owned by ANet) is not allowed. Since we do not have fair use, nor cc, our policy in that regards is a good bit stronger than, say, wikipedia's. However, since we almost exclusively deal with ANet content, it rarely shows. --Xeeron 12:43, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Hmm, okay. I think the policy ought to be clarified, then. Why would it say "...the following resources cannot automatically be assumed okay to copy..." when "...resources incompatible with GDFL cannot be copied..." is so much clearer and more concise? Maybe it's not as simple as I'm seeing it? --Kyoshi (Talk) User Kyoshi sig.png 16:44, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Because everything that is owned by ArenaNet is not GFDL, but is still allowed (and actually wanted) here. poke | talk 20:46, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Then maybe "...resources incompatible with GDFL, excluding content owned by ArenaNet..."? It just sounds like there are more exceptions than that to me, the way it's currently written, and it doesn't seem to explain it the way you just did. --Kyoshi (Talk) User Kyoshi sig.png 21:52, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Seems like a minor (but likely uncontroversial) change. I suggest you add it at Guild_Wars_Wiki:Policy#Currently_proposed_policy_changes to get some comments. --Xeeron 14:07, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Will do, thanks. --Kyoshi (Talk) User Kyoshi sig.png 15:11, 3 January 2010 (UTC)


I figure we should have a section on this page about the Feedback namespace, since it has different licensing. Something like:

  • Original content (which the contributor holds the copyright to) may be used freely on the wiki (etc etc)...
  • For suggestions submitted to the Feedback namespace, an unconditional license is granted to ArenaNet for use and distribution of the suggestion. (This allows ArenaNet to implement submitted feedback.) From there it is automatically re-licensed by ArenaNet under GFDL, effectively the same as any other permitted submission to the wiki for the purposes of users.

Is this necessary or am I paranoid? --Kyoshi User Kyoshi sig.png (Talk) 17:54, 25 June 2010 (UTC)

It's the wrong place. This policy only deals with what to do with copyrighted content (when "importing" it). See Guild Wars Wiki:Copyrights instead. poke | talk 06:31, 26 June 2010 (UTC)
It's possible to "import" copyrighted/incompatible content from within this own wiki, so that should be explained as well - copying from non-Feedback to Feedback, for example. -- pling User Pling sig.png 12:19, 26 June 2010 (UTC)
@Poke: I figure this policy should deal with everything GWW:Copyrights does, since it's a policy entirely made to explain that license. Also, GWW:Copyrights is maintained and edited by ANet, so if we don't explain here what it says about the Feedback namespace, where should we put it? --Kyoshi User Kyoshi sig.png (Talk) 14:52, 26 June 2010 (UTC)

Content changing request[edit]

I would like to propose to change "Please note that while information on GuildWiki is not registered under a GFDL-compatible license by default, some of its users have licensed their contributions under GFDL, and contributions by these users may be moved word-for-word to Guild Wars Wiki and used freely. A list of such contributors can be found here." from that to Please note that while information on GuildWars@Wikia and GuildWiki are not registered under a GFDL-compatible license by default, some of its users have licensed their contributions under GFDL, and contributions by these users may be moved word-for-word to Guild Wars Wiki and used freely. A list of such contributors can be found here for GuildWars@Wikia and here for GuildWiki. Thoughts? Kaisha User Kaisha Sig.png 17:10, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Clunky links, but possibly a solution til you get the fix from the wiki side of anet. but you can use the interwiki link for the wikia one at the moment here--File:User Chieftain Alex Chieftain Signature.pngChieftain Alex 17:22, 10 May 2011 (UTC)
I know that, but I prefer both to show as external links, until the interwiki of guildwiki is fixed. Kaisha User Kaisha Sig.png 18:30, 10 May 2011 (UTC)