Wikivoyage talk:Image policy

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I've seen some WebP images uploaded to the Commons, so is there any discussion for this file format? --Great Brightstar (talk) 17:06, 30 August 2020 (UTC)

At the moment there appear to be very few WebP files on Commons (a search revealed a total of 2,500 files compared to 3 million .png files). Can you give an example of a WebP image on commons which you think would be useful here? AlasdairW (talk) 20:19, 30 August 2020 (UTC)


I know that we don't allow images with watermarks to be used on this site. Wouldn't it be easiest if we stated that explicitly and clearly on this page? Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:41, 18 September 2020 (UTC)

Is it that we don't allow them or that we don't use them? I though it was the latter. I have never seen anybody claim they are not allowed, but if I see one I try to find one without, if an image is needed, in the same way as when I see a blurry or otherwise bad image. –LPfi (talk) 07:52, 19 September 2020 (UTC)
A watermark can of course be seen as giving credit to the photographer (or an organisation) in a way not given to other photographers providing photos under CC-BY or CC-BY-SA, both requiring equal credit. Seen that way we cannot use them without violating the licence. –LPfi (talk) 08:05, 19 September 2020 (UTC)
I don't think there's a distinction between not using them and not allowing the use of them. How about this language? Images with watermarks of any kind cannot be used on this site." Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:10, 19 September 2020 (UTC)
I don't know about "any kind". There might be times we want the watermark included – banknotes? "Images with watermarks cannot be used on this site, unless the watermark is an essential reason to choose that image"?
We could also have a remark on bylines: "We do not use bylines. Photographers are credited on the file description page, and giving some photographers more credit than others violates the CC BY-SA licence used for many images. The author can be mentioned in the caption of historic images, paintings and the like, when it is supposed to be of interest for the reader."
LPfi (talk) 08:29, 19 September 2020 (UTC)
Looks good to me. Ikan Kekek (talk) 09:13, 19 September 2020 (UTC)


Wikivoyage:Image_policy#Attribution_and_watermarks includes the text "giving some photographers more credit than others violates the CC BY-SA licence used for many images." I'm not a lawyer & it has been some time since I read the license, but the statement looks false to me.

I want to delete it. What do others think? Pashley (talk) 17:57, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

I don't know whether that violates the license or not, but the point is that it's manifestly unfair and against site policy. Maybe that's enough to state? Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:12, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
I remembered a bit wrongly, the licence reads:
"The credit required by this Section 4(c) may be implemented in any reasonable manner; provided, however, that in the case of a Adaptation or Collection, at a minimum such credit will appear, if a credit for all contributing authors of the Adaptation or Collection appears, then as part of these credits and in a manner at least as prominent as the credits for the other contributing authors."
I had not noticed the "if a credit for all ...". I think the requirement of fairness is enough for requesting equal credit also absent such a list, but my interpretation (IANAL) is I have been wrong. –LPfi (talk) 19:13, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

People in photosEdit

Swept in from the pub

Our upload form says "Avoid people in photos, unless you have their written permission". I do not know from where that comes. At least our image policy does not have any corresponding wording in People in photos. I suppose we don't want to have images that show deserted roads when visitors will see them crowded (and you wouldn't get the written permission of a crowd). Sometimes also having somebody look out over a landscape makes a better photo than the landscape alone. Commons' guideline Photographs of identifiable people is quite lenient.

Can we simply remove the wording from the upload form, should we have a link to the relevant section in our policy, and perhaps a link to the Commons guideline, or is there any reason we would want the present language to stay in some form?

LPfi (talk) 07:40, 11 February 2021 (UTC)

I concur. This policy has always struck me as unnecessary. Perhaps in the Wikitravel days, before we were affiliated with the WMF, it made sense because as a small independent wiki, we would have been less able to finance a legal defense in case someone sued (regardless if such a case had merit or not). But we're in a different situation now. First of all, in the vast majority of cases we're supposed to source our media from Commons, with local hosting remaining appropriate in only a narrow range of special cases which mostly exclude any context in which you'd see images of people. Secondly, LPfi correctly points out how much more lenient Commons' "photographs of identifiable people" policy is than ours; as a sister project whose entire purpose is to serve as a repository for copyleft-compatible media, they presumably know better than we do what passes legal muster and what doesn't, so it's perfectly sensible to follow their lead in determining where the boundary lies. Thirdly, in the infinitesimal chance that we do miscalculate and find ourselves in legal trouble for allegedly violating someone's privacy in a locally-hosted image, WMF Legal is a resource we now have at our disposal that we didn't before. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 20:56, 11 February 2021 (UTC)
On the other hand, we don't really want people uploading photos of themselves posing in front of the attraction. A crowd of people or a few incidental people in the background, but I don't think we want photos that feature identifiable individuals prominently. WhatamIdoing (talk) 19:34, 12 February 2021 (UTC)
True, but if we want written permissions, that is easier to get from your own company – the wording furthers exactly that kind of images. The wording in our image policy, on the other hand, discourages exactly such selfies. –LPfi (talk) 21:11, 12 February 2021 (UTC)

Former policy ca April 2006 (text by Evan and WTjk44)

In general, photos of people will be removed from Wikitravel. There are two reasons for this policy:

  1. A photo of the Taj Mahal is useful for travellers; a photo of your girlfriend in a funny hat standing in front of the Taj Mahal is not. In general, we don't really want pictures of travellers or other people in Wikitravel. Some exceptions might be for particular sports or activities or crowd scenes or illustrating some costume or uniform.
  2. In the United States and elsewhere human beings have privacy rights, that is, a right to control the use of their own image, even if they didn't create the image. Image creators need to get authorization from human subjects of photos to publish the images. See for a description of why and when a model release is required. A general rule of thumb is that if an image contains a subject that is identifiable, a model release is needed.
"Avoid people in photos, unless you have their permission to publish their image" was present in the very first revision of the Upload page, written by Evan. At the time that was written, our image policy read as seen here. For convenience, I've put the text in an infobox. Powers (talk) 00:37, 23 February 2021 (UTC)
There are times where a person is convenient to give a sense of scale, or just to identify that rockclimbing, snowboarding or skiing etc actually take place there. I'm uncomfortable with doing so in ways that make those people identifiable. WereSpielChequers (talk) 09:51, 14 March 2021 (UTC)

Sound filesEdit

Please see this edit for background. Apparently current policy explicitly allows sound files only in phrasebooks. Wikimedia Commons already has pronunciation clips for every municipality in Portugal. They're used in Wikipedia, and I believe that they would be very useful to our travellers, saving them the embarrassment of massacring the pronunciation of Portuguese place names. Beyond here, such pronunciation files will be helpful in other countries as well (including for many places in the Anglosphere that have counterintuitive pronunciations). Our made-up pseudo-pronunciations are inadequate, not as straightforward as we would like to think, and barely less complicated than IPA.

I, therefore, recommend that we expand our policy to allow sound files in destination articles for place name pronunciation in addition to the current allowance of using such files in phrasebooks. I do not wish to replace pseudo-pronunciation as our principle pronunciation help; I want to supplement it for the benefit of our travellers.

@Ikan Kekek

--Nelson Ricardo (talk) 23:43, 5 July 2021 (UTC)

I'd support this change, but let's see what countervailing points are brought up and give it 5-7 days or so. Ikan Kekek (talk) 23:45, 5 July 2021 (UTC)
Seems reasonable to me. —Granger (talk · contribs) 06:57, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
I'd support it. Dunno about rest of the world, but Australian names are hard to pronounce. (e.g. Tjuntjuntjura, Wooloomooloo, Balranald, Oodnadatta etc.) SHB2000 (talk | contribs | en.wikipedia) 07:01, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
Those Australian names aren't phonetic (choon-choon-choorah, woo-loo-moo-loo, bahl-rahn-ahld, etc.)? Ikan Kekek (talk) 07:23, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
Some are, some aren't and have a completely different pronunciation. SHB2000 (talk | contribs | en.wikipedia) 09:13, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
  • Comment. I will support the proposal, but I'd first like to have a guideline on how they'd be used. "Place names" sounds like at least the place an article is about, and I suppose the pronunciation link should be close to the boldface place name with link to its official tourism web site. But what should the link look like? Should a pronunciation parameter also be added to the listing templates? Perhaps pronunciation links could be included inline elsewhere. I don't think we are ready to allow someone adding a link everywhere they deem it suitable. –LPfi (talk) 09:12, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
    I believe that the top of the Understand section is the best place to put it. Please see this old page version for an example. I don't think we want to clutter up the lead with pronunciation info. We're not Wikipedia.
    By the way, policy was changed last year to place the official tourism site toward the end of Understand section rather than in the lead. Wikivoyage:External links#External link usage. Nelson Ricardo (talk) 09:42, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
  • Support. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 11:25, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
  • Support. I agree with putting it in Understand. I think adding (/ˈgɾɐ̃.du.ɫɐ/, GRUHN-doo-luh) to the lead paragraph is a bad idea as it makes Wikivoyage look encyclopedic and unappealing when only the first couple of lines show up in a search engine result. We should not, however, include them in Brazilian articles as no English-speaker is ever going to be able to pronounce Brazilian Portuguese anyway. (I'm joking, of course. Maybe it's just me.) Ground Zero (talk) 11:33, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
@Ground Zero: that's me as well. Especially with the r's. SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 11:38, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
Some of us have more difficulties than others. Regardless of how one's pronunciation ends up, it is nice (and often useful) to know the local pronunciation, or at least recognise it. Even for me in Sweden, some local pronunciations are surprising (cf the Anglosphere comment in the original post). –LPfi (talk) 12:28, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
tbh, I've never heard a tourist say an Australian indigenous name properly. Even I myself find pronunciations quite surprizing. SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 12:32, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
"Regardless of how one's pronunciation ends up, it is nice (and often useful) to know the local pronunciation, or at least recognise it." I agree. I also agree on the guidelines proposed above: Put or link the audio file in "Understand" and restrict it to the name of the destination the article is about, not the umpteen "See" listings, etc. Ikan Kekek (talk) 17:23, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
I agree with Ikan Kekek's description of the guidelines. Ground Zero (talk) 17:52, 6 July 2021 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── It looks like consensus will be to allow place name pronunciation audio files. I propose we edit the end of the Wikivoyage:Image_policy#Other_media section as follows after we close this discussion.

--Nelson Ricardo (talk) 19:57, 6 July 2021 (UTC)

I support the addition of destination pronunciation, and the words above look good. It will be a welcome addition, and in many cases the files have already been recorded for WP. I would also suuport their use in the Talk section of articles (essentially mini-phrasebooks), but this can come later. AlasdairW (talk) 20:06, 6 July 2021 (UTC)

About a week has passed without opposition. I'll go ahead and add my edits to the policy. Thank you for your support. --Nelson Ricardo (talk) 20:53, 11 July 2021 (UTC)

Upright image sizesEdit

I recall vividly that these are against Wikivoyage policy and that that led to long, acrimonious edit wars with Frank, but where is it actually stated that you are not allowed to use them? Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:49, 10 August 2021 (UTC)

No comments? Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:14, 18 August 2021 (UTC)
Do you mean portrait-oriented (taller than wide) pics vs. landscape-oriented (wider than tall) pics? I have no idea, but clarifying may jog other contributors' memories. Nelson Ricardo 2500 (talk) 20:24, 18 August 2021 (UTC)
No, it's not about orientation. Have a look at this edit. Where it says "upright=" is the issue. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:34, 18 August 2021 (UTC)
Why is it an issue and what difference does it make to the image? --ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 21:55, 18 August 2021 (UTC)
I think it may have been a policy, and was much discussed in Wikivoyage:User_ban_nominations/Archive#User:W._Frank, but I don't know where it is stated. It is notable that "upright=" isn't mentioned in Wikivoyage:How_to_add_an_image#Sizing. Using "upright=" does make it harder to have a set of images of the same width in the right column, which might be a reason for forbidding it.
I also note that it does allow editors to put large images on a page without it being visible in the source. If an edit changes [[File:picture|thumb|caption]] to [[File:picture|thumb|900px|caption]], I can immediately see the change in a diff, and would probably hit undo. However if the change is to [[File:picture|thumb|upright=2|caption]], I have to look at the page to see if the edit is ok. AlasdairW (talk) 22:01, 18 August 2021 (UTC)
The claim was that since proportional sizes will look very different on different browsers, they can be user-unfriendly. I never had a personal beef with them, but since they were the occasion of years of knock-down, drag-out fights with W. Frank/Alice, yet I can't see where any policy about them is actually on a policy page, it would be good to make a decision about them. Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:18, 19 August 2021 (UTC)
I don't understand. "upright=2" is explicitly making the image double the normal size. Why would one have to look at the rendering to see that? And why is it harder to have a set of images of the same width when they are "upright=1.3" than when they are "320px"? The parameter is just for changing image sizes in relation to the user's default image size, instead of in relation to what the editor has on their screen. The difference between the two ways of changing image sizes concerns only those users who have chosen a default image size themselves – and specifying a bigger size in pixels, those users may actually get a smaller version of that image. With different browser window sizes you won't get the same layout anyway. –LPfi (talk) 04:13, 19 August 2021 (UTC)
I think the argument was that we should use the default size almost all the time and that if we specify a different size, it's somehow more predictable to use numbers of pixels than proportions. If that's not true, it's not true. As I said, I don't care greatly, but I think we should resolve the issue. Maybe there are some longtimers who have a better memory than I of why this question was important. I do remember ultimately seeing their point, but for the longest time, I favored Frank's argument (though not his behavior in the face of a consensus against his point of view on that and other things). User:Pashley, User:Inas, User:Jpatokal, Powers, User:AndreCarrotflower, do you guys remember why Frank always lost the argument on proportional image sizes and it was considered important enough not to concede on? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:04, 19 August 2021 (UTC)
If you say 320px, the image will predictably be shown at about 320px. It might, though, show smaller rather than larger than an image at default size, for users who have changed their default size. To have all images show at predictable sizes – in pixels – you have to override the user preferences for all images by providing px sizes. You still don't know how big they will be in inches. A user with extreme resolution will get relatively small images, as you override their large preferred size, as will a user who just prefers large images. If you don't use px sizes the user gets their preferred size (or WMF's default). With upright= you can still make some images larger, relative the user/WMF default. I was never involved in the Frank dispute, and I don't know those arguments. –LPfi (talk) 05:56, 19 August 2021 (UTC)
Sorry, Ikan, I avoided those arguments whenever possible. Powers (talk) 01:20, 20 August 2021 (UTC)
A very wise decision! Ikan Kekek (talk) and 01:25, 20 August 2021 (UTC)
Hi Ikan, do you mean this discussion? I didn't participate in the original discussion, but the point about maps/graphics makes sense to me (it's toward end of the discussion). I make maps to a specific size usually to ensure readability, although it's probably not a problem if the map ends up bigger than intended. -Shaundd (talk) 02:23, 20 August 2021 (UTC)
That's a relevant thread; thanks, Shaundd. I guess the question is, is it still enough of an issue that either (1) everyone has a different default width for thumbnails or (2) anyone is asking Wikimedia to change the default size of thumbnails and they might actually change that? Part of the problem is, if we do decide to uphold a ban on upright image sizes and note that on this page, it will be really annoying for User:Travelwriter1000, who's been really helpful in adding quality images and pagebanners and uses upright image sizes all the time. I'd be content to leave well enough alone, but considering how much trouble previous arguments over this policy caused, it seemed to warrant a discussion. Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:49, 20 August 2021 (UTC)
hard to see
takes up way too much space
I actually switched to the upright option because I thought I was supposed to avoid using the #px option 😅. Upright solves the problem of having a default width to all thumbnails, which is highly relevant for pictures like these of Qeshm Island and the Empire State Building. In other words, having all images display at the same width isn't actually a good thing.
I just dug up the way to change the default thumbnail width of 220px (which is just way too small) at Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-rendering, but probably only the most diehard users would ever find that. For what it's worth, I look at this site mostly for the pictures, since it's usually a little better at giving me an idea what a place looks like than Google or Wikipedia, so it's nice to have the images big(ger) and beautiful. The travel information isn't too relevant these days, since COVID has screwed up travel 🙄. Travelwriter1000 (talk) 14:39, 20 August 2021 (UTC)
Thanks for your input. There's no question that some thumbnails shouldn't be presented in default size. It seems like no-one really cares greatly about upright image sizes anymore. Would anyone object to just leaving well enough alone, or should we state that it's OK, recommended or not recommended to use them? Ikan Kekek (talk) 00:08, 21 August 2021 (UTC)

[outdent] It is really a pity that WMF doesn't allow changing the default image size. I think that would solve most problems, and I think that is what eventually has to be done. One possibility would be to just ignore the possibility of choosing your own default size. If only "the most diehard users" do that, we might regard the layout for other users as more important. For those who haven't set it, default size and 220px are equivalent, as are "upright=1.2" and 264px. With upright= we can change relative sizes, which works well with portrait/landscape, and the lead image if we want it bigger, but we should not have a default of "default + 30%". The only way to cleanly get bigger images all over is by specifying sizes in pixels.

We could change the image policy to recommend 400px (or whatever) as default. If we do this, we should use a size from the list of possible preferences. For the servers it will not be worse than every article being read by one user with 400px as preference, with images at default size (the thumbnails would have to be generated for that user, and will then be cached). Still, this is voiding the WMF decision not to allow different defaults in server settings; I don't know how (or whether) they'd react.

LPfi (talk) 06:12, 21 August 2021 (UTC)

Return to the project page "Image policy".