Policy Talk:Images


Speaking only for myself, I really hate having the thumbnail images that just float around part of the article. Drives me absolutely insane.--Mbear 11:54, 6 April 2010 (UTC)

I can live with that (your insanity). Personally, when well-done, I do like them. That's why I move some to better fit next to the item they visualize. And don't think I didn't notice that you brought this up minutes (minutes!) before I was announcing the new policy. --Revanche (talk|contribs) 12:00, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, I figured you were OK with me going nuts. I tried to remove the floating thumbnails by encouraging the use of a gallery, but oh well.--Mbear 14:37, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
"If it weren't for those meddling kids..." Seriously, though, I'm gonna go live with the policy here shortly and if we had wanted (which this we doesn't) to cut out thumbnails, we should have said just that. But, with so many Wikipedians here, I think you'll find people who favor thumbnails as informative visuals. The gallerys seem like a good place for "Oh, by the way, here are some more images of a Warhammer". --Revanche (talk|contribs) 15:30, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Those are all good points. Like the Capellans say, "You can't win them all." Smiley.gif--Mbear 15:39, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Are you sure they say 'all' in that phrase?--Revanche (talk|contribs) 17:57, 6 April 2010 (UTC)

Providing sources[edit]

I don't know if this belongs to this policy or not (please discuss), but we obviously need to stress it more that pictures need to have their source stated upon uploading (preferably in the comments section on the file page). This appears not to be the case for a great many pictures uploaded so far, and citing sources is very important for the credibility of this wiki - all the more considering that fan art is positively allowed here, so me must be extra cautious to provide full references. Frabby 17:31, 6 April 2010 (UTC)

Nutshell #2 & Guideline #5 state just that. Maybe we need a user warning template aimed at the user who has uploaded images past the policy's unveiling. I'm loathe to hit every image uploaded in the last 3.5 years with a tag, especially as they wouldn't be seen as easily as {{cn}} is in an article.--Revanche (talk|contribs) 18:01, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Should teach me to read before I write - plainly overlooked this at first glance. Well, as it turns out the entire image gallery was apparently ripped from an unsourced site that took its pics from various computer games (= apocrypha) and all over the internet otherwise (= default to Fanon). Putting aside the question whether or not having pretty pictures for no particular reason (and bar any BT-related information or context) is in itself desirable on BTW, I fear this just proves that we *do* have to tag each and every picture from the past 3.5 years. Quality over quantity... Frabby 18:08, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Well, Wikipedia does it, so...
Ahem, [cough, cough]...will you be building the template? I'll be glad to assist however I can and can review the wording, if you like. --Revanche (talk|contribs) 18:24, 6 April 2010 (UTC)
Image files are a different animal from articles, because they are typically uploaded only once and never modified/edited by others. Past experience also shows that often a single editor will upload a load of images in a short timeframe as personal project of theirs. So the "right" way to address this would be a friendly reminder on the editor's talk page for all of "his" images together. Not sure if/how a template would be of use here.
My proposal is to change the Upload File special page in some way to the effect that a file will not be uploaded if you don't enter text into its "Summary" box, and make it clear in the text on the upload page that BTW wants (requires) a primary source to be stated with every image file upload. (I think we need NicJ to do that tough). Frabby 09:31, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
I think that is something that can actually done by Admins, with CSS. I'll pull Ebakunin into this. Oh, and I like this idea better than another template. --Revanche (talk|contribs) 11:07, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
What I can do is embed code for a template into the textarea of the upload page. That way, going forward, the uploader will need to fill out the template before uploading the image. The template will look something like the summary section of this page: http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/File:Viper_probe_droid.jpg. However, I can't go back and apply the template to older pictures. --Ebakunin (talk|contribs) 14:46, 16 April 2010 (UTC)
Excellent, Ebakunin. Thanks!--Revanche (talk|contribs) 11:36, 17 April 2010 (UTC)
Done. You can see an example here. Go to the Upload a file page and you'll see the template in the textarea, ready to be filled out. If you have any questions or suggestions ask away. Thanks.--Ebakunin (talk|contribs) 21:22, 17 April 2010 (UTC)
It looks great and provides an easy format for the uploader. Great turnaround time, too. Thanks. Is there anyway to prevent uploading when the format is not used? --Revanche (talk|contribs) 23:27, 17 April 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but it will take a while to code. When I have some free time I'll take a look into it. --Ebakunin (talk|contribs) 00:49, 18 April 2010 (UTC)
Never mind. It was easier then I thought. Tongue.gif --Ebakunin (talk|contribs) 03:22, 18 April 2010 (UTC)
Sure? i just tested it and had no problems uploading it? Or did you not yet build in the code?--Revanche (talk|contribs) 06:09, 18 April 2010 (UTC)
As in I already added the code. If you try to upload a new image without using the image template you should get an error notice and be prevented from finishing the upload process. --Ebakunin (talk|contribs) 17:23, 18 April 2010 (UTC)
Got it. The template is required to be in there, but we can't make them fill it in. It 'inspires' them to provide the necessary information. Can we also put a statement into the template that says something like: "The uploader bears the responsibility of assuring the use of the image falls under the terms of Fair Use." Maybe have a link to the WP article on it? --Revanche (talk|contribs) 18:25, 18 April 2010 (UTC)


I would like to suggest a clarification to the second clause in Guideline #2 regarding usage in articles. I would like to propose that text be added to clarify that an article that is simply a gallery of images does not qualify as "an article". I would submit:

BTW is not an image repository. Just as you write high quality article text, include high-quality images. Each uploaded image shall be used within at least one article (or its talk page). "Articles" consisting solely of images do not qualify.
--Scaletail 00:25, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
Agree with your point, although I'm not sure if the policy really needs to be written any more clearly. Plus, brevity is also important in policies. I do suggest, however, to replace the "should"s with "must"s in the text just to be absolutely clear. Frabby 10:55, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Fair Use[edit]

A couple of points came up on the CGL forum that I think need to be discussed. This policy predates me, and it's not something I've ever taken an interest in, so I'm not sure what the history is, but here are the things that came up:

1. ColBosch highlighted here: http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=56773.msg1305322#msg1305322 that the Sarna policy on Fair Use is out of step with US copyright law. Assuming that Sarna's hosted on servers in teh US, I think someone with more understnading of US law than me is asked to review the policy and confirm if we're adhering with US law or in breach of it, and propose any changes that need to be made if the latter is the case.

2. Adrian Gideon/Ray highlighted here: http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=56773.msg1305405#msg1305405 that he doesn't think either anything PGI related or any PGI-related imagery (I'm not completely clear on which) should be mixed in with the articles on Sarna. Given his position with CGL and expertise, I think that should become a rule/policy here, and I think it should be clarified whether he's referring to imagery or everything PGI-related.

Thoughts? BrokenMnemonic (talk) 14:35, 17 March 2017 (EDT)

To begin with, I don't think we're in any trouble at all because the commercial IP owners know of and tolerate this wiki, which anounts (at the very least) to free advertising for their products and a community service for their customers. Sarna thus doesn't rely on Fair Use. That said, I actually think Fair Use would apply - but my grasp of US or international IP law is weak. I feel it's a non-issue.
Ray's comment, as I understood it, was simply meant to say you shouldn't mistake PGI content for CGL content, as only CGL can define canon. Frabby (talk) 15:59, 17 March 2017 (EDT)
Personally I think Ray is correct and PGI content should not be mixed with canon articles Dark Jaguar (talk) 17:25, 17 March 2017 (EDT)
Well yes, PGI content (except Hero 'Mech fluff...) is apocryphal and needs to be marked as such, to clearly segregate it from canonical content. But beyond that, it's not "less apocryphal" than other official-but-not-canonical content. It does fall under our Policy:Notability and under Sarna BTW's purview. Frabby (talk) 02:59, 18 March 2017 (EDT)
Yes it is apocryphal, but the inclusion of that material type has also never sat that well with me. Always thought it should have a separate article. I know the problems with that, it's just me wanting to see more of a separation between content somehow. I don't have a huge problem with it. On that matter the "apocryphal article marker" is fine, but I personally think the in article "Contents starts" marker is way too big and distracts from the overall article completely. Dark Jaguar (talk) 06:43, 18 March 2017 (EDT)
With regards full separation of video game items, so do already have some with the MechCommander items; BattleMechs in MechCommander 2 and its mods for example. Another option aside from separation is something akin to Game Rules tagging

like so, to make apocryphal content visible without so "aggressively" breaking up the page as the current start/end tagging does.

Cyc (talk) 07:03, 18 March 2017‎ (EDT)
I like that idea, although it probably should be discussed elsewhere - perhaps the apocryphal information could be displayed like this? Dark Jaguar (talk) 11:45, 18 March 2017 (EDT)

The following information comes from apocryphal sources; the canonicity of such information is uncertain.

All information could then go into the box itself?

1: We have CGL's current art director, Brent Evans, contributing to the site, including uploading the Incubus II image. (Assuming someone didn't start an account with his name.) Does that show some sort of implicit permission?
2: A less intrusive "Content Starts" marker would be a good idea if we're keeping the video game content combined with the BattleTech content, and perhaps a separate "Apocriphal Image Gallery" below the BattleTech gallery? I wouldn't mind seeing the video game content completely separated. I don't consider the MechCommander 1/2 content truly separated, though. There is separate data but the links to the 'Mechs take us right back to the BattleTech entry. Any images are combined with the BattleTech content.--Cache (talk) 11:48, 18 March 2017 (EDT)
I'm open to a discussion about improving the apocryphal tags. But that belongs into Template talk:ApocryphalContentStart instead.
As for CGL people using this wiki, that's cool. It certainly reinforces my impression that the site is positively toleratd, and thus not in any legal troubles (real or theoretical). But it cannot be construed as any form of endorsement. Sarna is and wants to be an unofficial fan project only, and doesn't seek any official ties or responsibilities to the IP holders. This works both ways and protects the IP owners from Sarna hosting unseen art or third-party stuff.
So, at the moment, the situation is:
1. We're not actually complying with US copyright law on fair use, so we shouldn't adding the fair use icon to every image, and
2. We're operating in a space where we haven't been asked to remove the art, but we can't ask to use the art because that will almost certainly result in the answer being no (as I'm guessing whatever distribution rights CGL paid for when they bought the art didn't include third-party distribution) so we really don't want the question to be asked.
It sounds to me as if our use of the fair use tag is incorrect, and they should be removed from the images, and discussing the use of art on Sarna anywhere on the CGL forums or within hearing distance of someone senior in CGL is asking for us to be told to cease & desist. BrokenMnemonic (talk) 18:44, 18 March 2017 (EDT)

"edit or modification to an image"[edit]

Looking for guidance on this specific policy line: "Please note that any edit or modification to an image technically constitutes fan work, requiring attribution to the last editor (usually in addition to the original artist) and eliminating the image's canon status."

I ask this because of this:
Original canon

Colorized non-canon

Present Articles

Gruese introduced me to Flamestalker, a member of a fan BT art team on Discord. Flamestalker makes colorized versions of canon unit insignia, based upon the existing canon artwork and with the descriptive colors. He was seeking someone here to discuss adding his fan creations. I was skeptical of what he was planning on uploading until he showed me these examples and what he intended. We went thru the policy and I felt the above quote--specifically the last part ("...requiring attribution to the last editor (usually in addition to the original artist) and eliminating the image's canon status), as well as the line "Unless it was specifically created for BTW to improve an article, the relevance of fan work is generally questionable"--allowed the original b/w art to be replaced by his art. I gave him the guidance, "improve canon art, not create it out of whole cloth" and instructions on how to upload to Sarna.

Frabby has pointed out that fan-art needs to be labeled as Apocryphal (though that is not discussed on the policy page). I feel the policy does allow for this art as an improvement to an article, but I'm not certain tagging it as apocryphal, within the article itself, is beneficial.

My suggestion to Flamestalker was that when he upload a new version of a file, he add "colorized by Flamestalker" to the summary line, so that the original art attribution remains. I've also tested the Apocryphal tag to the image and it seems to work well there; when a person wished to find the attribution for the image, they are notified the image (as displayed) is apocryphal (and my summary indicated that applies to the colorized version).

Feedback?--Revanche (talk|contribs) 11:24, 6 February 2019 (EST)

Personally, I don't like the idea of putting anything fan-created in with the canon articles. Folks tend to not pay enough attention to see the apocryphal tags (or whatever other notation) and they could inadvertently influence canon. But, this isn't my site and the policy is set. That being said, I think tagging of the images as you have shown in the examples is the best we can do without making a page look bad. (MWO images should be tagged the same way!) I would like to see the colorized notation in the infobox on the file page, but I can't think of a good way to do it. It should not be placed in the artist field because that will remove it from the missing copyright information category. Also, if the artist is using colors based on canon descriptions, those descriptions (with proper references) should be added to the parent article so users can verify on their own. If there is no specific source, the colorization is a new creation and not an improvement, so I don't think it belongs here.--Cache (talk) 18:10, 7 February 2019 (EST)
"this isn't my site and the policy is set." Correction, Cache: your opinion does matter; this is how policy is set or updated. Admins work with Editors to achieve consensus. Your response is helpful/critical to that process.
Clearly, I think the articles are improved with such well-crafted art as in my examples, especially over the original b/w images, so I won't belabor that point. I do agree with you that the colorization should be based on canon descriptions of the insignia, with references on the file page or in the summary.
Would you please clarify, just as a test of a possible policy update: if the two examples above did not have reference to the color source, would you prefer the original b/w images instead for the respective articles? --Revanche (talk|contribs) 10:14, 8 February 2019 (EST)
Yes, I would prefer a b/w image to a colorized image not based on a canon description. If the unit logo colorization is not based on a canon description, and multiple fans wish to show their stuff, how are we to determine which fan-colored image is (most) appropriate? If the green and yellow coloring of the LXX Corps logo doesn't suit me (assuming those colors are not canon) and I wish to make it purple and blue, then who is correct? What if those colors are canon but I would like to alter it with different shades of green and yellow? There are amazing colored images of TRO units done by fans that look better than the plain b/w images, but we don't allow them, right? Why is that? The more I type, the more I talk myself out of allowing even colorized images based on canon colors. --Cache (talk) 12:36, 9 February 2019 (EST)
Reasonable argument. And if the insignia's colors are described, but only the b/w image exists, how do you feel about a fan-created image?--Revanche (talk|contribs) 13:54, 9 February 2019 (EST)
It feels bad to condemn such fan work. But we have to draw a line somewhere, and canonical b/w illustrations being colored by fans does cross the line for me. Even if there is a canonical description of the color(s), details like the exact shade and composition would still be totally arbitrary. And I'm always concerned about possible accusations of "jumping to conclusions" on Sarna - like the recent Arms of Thor crest discussion over at the BT forum. Allowing any fan-made content opens up our flank to that kind of thing. (And Mendrugo is one of the community's best data miners/analysts - normally you can simply take his word for BT facts.) Frabby (talk) 14:05, 9 February 2019 (EST)
Ah-kay; I know when I'm beaten. If interest in setting up "agreeable standards" develops, I'll pick up the banner again, but in the meantime, I'll ask Flamestalker to stand down.--Revanche (talk|contribs) 16:47, 9 February 2019 (EST)
I don't intend to restart the discussion on this topic. I ran across some examples of what I believe are acceptable additions of fan art, and I wanted to put them here for any future discussion (as I will likely forget where they are).
They're both recreations of color canon images where there really isn't any guess-work involved. In my opinion, those are acceptable additions of fan art. The FWLM Rank images were labled as Fanon years ago, and I am about to add it to the Kali Yama image. I believe that is more appropriate than Apocryphal.
--Cache (talk) 19:24, 19 March 2019 (EDT)

Image Source Requirements[edit]

The policy states that "Images must name their source," under Image Tenets. Then in the Uploading Guide further down the page is asks for the page number, when possible. Template:Image_summary/doc adds one more requirement: "The source of the image. Should include the book name and year from where the picture was taken." Would it not be appropriate to specify source, year, and page in one location within the policy? I believe it also would be appropriate to provide a link to the template in the policy and repeat those requirements in the template.--Cache (talk) 17:15, 25 August 2020 (EDT)

I haven't worked with images much, but I'm always in favor of having clear policy statements like the one you suggest, and aligning tools and templates with policy. Tosta Dojen (talk) 11:58, 26 August 2020 (EDT)