Image sizeEdit

Regarding image size, I suggest the following rule: images appearing in side-bars (on articles about persons, planets etc.) should have a width of exactly 200px. It shouldn't be more than that, because the readability of the article suffers. Also, bigger images can be viewed by clicking on the 200px 'thumbnail'. It should be exactly that, to avoid having a unique size for each image. -- Cid Highwind 19:20, 31 May 2004 (CEST)

That is already an un-official rule, but I do think we ought to make it official. -- Redge | Talk 14:14, 16 Aug 2004 (CEST)
Since the software now resizes the images on demand, is there any reason for this restriction? Commodore Sixty-Four(talk) 19:54, January 11, 2010 (UTC)
Since this is another old discussion brought back to life... and since the changes have already (long since) been made... oh, and since there's no mention in the policy page... here is the policy in current use:
Images on articles should not have a px size at all, except on list articles when it should be 150px. For sidebars, use the {{sidebar image}} template. That's built-in to 90% of the sidebar templates out there already.
That's the policy on sizes. -- sulfur 20:31, January 11, 2010 (UTC)

Placement of copyright messageEdit

I notice a lot of people writing the copyright message right at the end of the description. I would uggest using a new line and an indent, such as used here, since it makes things more readable, and it is IMO better layout. -- Redge | Talk 14:14, 16 Aug 2004 (CEST)

Image titlesEdit

I think this section needs to be made more precise, and the resulting rules need to be enforced (by allowing to easily delete and re-upload images that don't follow the rules). The main reason for this is that many images have an obscure or misleading title. Combined with the existing difficulties to search for specific images, this leads to a situation where images get "buried" somewhere in the database. I just deleted several images that were simply unused for months. Some examples for what I think are "bad" titles:

  • File:HealthyViidian.jpg - Vidiian is misspelled; also, it would be nice to find all images showing vidiians grouped by using a common prefix. A better title in this case would be: Vidiian_healthy.jpg, or alternatively Danara_Pel_healthy.jpg
  • File:A map of the Romulus system.jpg - this is a good image description, but not a good title. A better might be: Romulan_system_map.jpg
  • File:2286shuttlepod.jpg - 2286 is good, shuttlepod is good - the order is bad. The important fact is that the image shows a shuttlepod, not that it shows something from 2286. Make that Shuttlepod_(2286).jpg, or even better use a less generic name than shuttlepod, if possible.
  • File:Captured003.jpg - This title doesn't make any sense at all...

I think a good rule would be to use the exact article title (using the same capitalization) of the object/person shown. If an image shows more than one object, use the name of the most important or the most distinct object first. If the specific situation shown is important, add it after that title. If, and only if, there still would be more than one image with the same filename, add a qualifier (for example year or movie title abbreviation). Only use lowercase file-extensions.

What do you think? -- Cid Highwind 22:12, 2005 Jan 15 (CET)

I agree on the extensions they should all be lowercase. Personally I don't like filenames with capitals in them, to confusing and more difficult to search for. You never know which letter is a capital or not. With respect to the nameing I think that most images are now named in such a manner that you can 'see' by the name what the image is but there will always will be people who name their images 'blabla23.jpg'. It might be handy if there is a way to rename the images instead of delete and upload the image again. Maby it is possible to put the images in a category to improve search capabilities ? Another thing would be that the description of an image is correctly filled so one can see where the image came from. -- Q 21:16, 16 Jan 2005 (CET)
We definitely need a better system to organize images; it's pretty difficult to locate images through the current search, especially if they're misspelt. I support the idea of using the article title as the name, but I also agree that the filenames should always be left lowercase... it's just easier to reference them that way. And we definitely need to get better about image summaries and detail pages.
As far as nomenclature goes, I like Cid's suggestions. Is it possible to rename images through moving them? That'll leave lots of redirects, but deleting those would be easier than reuploading everything. -- SmokeDetector47 21:47, 2005 Jan 16 (CET)
Good point - in that case, the rule should be to use lowercase filenames only. I think it is not possible to move images at the moment; Save-Delete-Reupload would be our only way. -- Cid Highwind 21:51, 2005 Jan 16 (CET)

Increasing number of images Edit

I'm not exactly sure how to approach this issue (everyone has been guilty of this at one time or another, including myself on several occasions), or even if it is an issue any longer following the move to Wikicities, but is the following still applicable?

The old adage "a picture is worth a thousand words" is quite literally true, considering average file sizes for images. Please upload images solely for the purpose of illustration. Generally, no more than one or two images should be used in an article; three images might be acceptable for some long articles.

The only reason I ask is that it seems lately that many articles, some relatively small, have received multiple images, sometimes with only minor differences between them, or images which seem to be for ornamental purposes only. This is especially evident when it comes to starships and characters. I can truly see the value of having the images as a reference (particularly for characters), but there are other sites out there which have those sorts of images; Memory Alpha isn't an image gallery. We can link to those sites if necessary. Furthermore, I've noticed some discussion on the featured article nominations page which seems to indicate even a small article requires two to three images to be considered featured material. So does anyone else have an opinion on this, or am I just concerned about nothing? :) -- SmokeDetector47 // talk 05:41, 1 May 2005 (UTC)

Talk:Zoe McLellan Edit

Adding offsite photos to articles -- is this a violation of a policy? -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk 02:56, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

No rule says that images must be on Memory-Alpha. I see no reason not to link to external images. — — Ŭalabio 08:16, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
It's a violation of common courtesy and netiquette, certainly. Hotlinking images steals bandwidth. In addition, we need the images to be uploaded to our server so we can include the proper copyright references and citations. Memory Alpha:Image use policy doesn't say anything about hotlinking purely because it is expected that you upload the images here. -- Michael Warren | Talk 11:16, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
  • Clearly not all are thinking that way, said note should be added. Tyrant 03:13, 6 Jun 2005 (UTC)Tyrant

Out-dated Image use policy? Edit

Currently, our image policy states: "Generally, no more than one or two images should be used in an article; three images might be acceptable for some long articles." While this may be acceptable for average pages, there are numerous examples of articles for which three images as a maximum is simply not enough. Examples are long episode summaries and pages of main characters. Checking out our Featured Article's list, one would notice practically all of these pages contain far more than three images.

I would suggest to revise this rule, stating no article may have more than three images that are article-specific. While a page would than be allowed to have more images (though one should not go overboard on image use, of course), it would limit the number of images uploaded specifically for that page.

For example, an image showing two main characters can be used on the pages of both characters under "Personal relationships", as well as on the page the image was screencaptured from. This way, an image is/can be used on at least three pages. Ottens 17:12, 6 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I tried to address a similar issue here last month... based on recent discussions on the Talk:Guinan and Memory Alpha:Files for deletion pages, I think we should seriously reevaluate our use of images, particularly when it comes to the areas I mentioned. Just for example, do we really need more than one image on pages like USS Fredrickson or Runabout (Enterprise-D)? Are images other than generic Excelsior or runabout pictures even needed on those pages? For the Fredrickson, there is also another image depicting it on Federation tug... why not combine the two images into one? Similarly, there are now three separate images about the Enteprise-D runabout, including a superflous one showing it explode on ""Timescape"." Many episode and character pages are similar... on William T. Riker, there are two images of him from Nemesis, one while he was still a commander and another with the simple addition of a captain's rank insignia. One could definitely go. I think we should also redefine the image policy to state that most small articles should be restricted to one image unless there is something else that needs to be illustrated and cannot be adequately described with text, in order to avoid choking the page. Images like those on the Guinan page may be getting to that point; maybe keep the images of Picard and Guinan and Q and Guinan because those relationships were important, but we know what the other main characters look like, so there's no real need to show them together with Guinan. Also, if minor subjects such as one-off starship appearances or the like can be combined into the same image without getting too confusing, that should be done as well. For episodes, only pivotal moments which cannot be otherwise described should need images... simple images showing two characters discussing a situation in an otherwise unremarkable environment should be avoided. Of course, there are also grey areas... if an otherwise uninteresting image is necessary for a character page but could also fit on an episode page or vice-versa, then the image should be reused as much as possible. The community should ultimately use its judgement about whether or not certain images are required. -- SmokeDetector47 // talk 18:06, 11 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Would it be possible to start some image categories (Possibly under the supercategory Category:Memory Alpha images) to help track these? If we start categorizing our images, it might be easier to see which ones we have the most of, especially if we sort them by series or seasons.
Another suggestion would be to use the "what links here" of individual episodes to try and identify all the images cited as being from that episode -- to add them to the summary, so as to make the existing images more useful, and lessen the likelihood of someone uploading a similar and superfluous image. If it wouldn't be possible to put all the images from one episode on the episode page itself, perhaps a list of them instead, so they will be immediately accessible to a user that wants to use the image for the summary, or a related aritcle. -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk 18:13, 11 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Creating image categories is a great idea and one which I'd wholeheartedly support... while we have the search function, it isn't of the greatest use when it comes to finding images. In addition to series and seasons, individual character, ship, planet, etc. categories would also be helpful. -- SmokeDetector47 // talk 18:25, 11 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Memory Alpha:Category suggestions -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk
Regarding the initial topic, I also feel that limiting some pages to just 2 or 3 images is a bit strict, especially in the cases of primary or strong secondary characters. However, using the Guinan reference and despite my concerns in her talk page, quantity isn't so much the issue here as is the relevancy. There really should only be maybe 6 good images on her page: 1-headshot, 1-w/ Picard, 1-w/ Q, 1-w/ Ro and one of her in the 19th century. The necessity of the remaining "interaction images", to me, remain doubtful. The same can be said about the multiple images of interaction with the same character -- Guinan w/ Picard (x3)??. Now, granted, her relationships with the other crewmembers were important...they were never exactly 'life-affirming', at least compared to the more 'emotional' interactions that she had with say, Picard (love) and Q (hate).
In much the same way, I don't think we need images of every primary character interacting with every other primary character, unless there is a strong or, at least, a "meaningful to the characters' development"-type relationship between the two. But also, having "individual images" of a character without anyone else in it can also, just as easily, be placed on another characters page without requiring images of the two characters interacting. Looking at the Leonard McCoy page, for example, there are images of notable individuals mentioned on his page without him actually being in a picture with them. By cutting back on "interaction images" and sticking to "singles" -- we can cut back on clogging up the image archive.
On a somewhat related topic, what are the feelings on occurances of two characters interacting from two different series, in terms of priority? These seem somewhat important to those who are interested in crossover appearances. I'm thinking mostly TOS with TNG/DS9/VOY, like McCoy/Data, Scotty/La Forge, Picard/Kirk, Spock, Sarek, Janeway/Sulu, etc. -- or, in the case of what I had in mind: Guinan/Chekov. Although, and quite understandably, their interact was just a brief one-shot deal, it still does make for a good Guinan character-time_period/age-reference, as well as another somewhat rare crossover meet-n-greet. I think age reference images are important for articles, especially when we can see a character in a time or at a age that is not commonly viewed - the young characters from "Rascals", or the severely aged characters from "The Deadly Years" would be prime examples of significant character variations. Granted, in the case of Guinan, her age doesnt show, but the fact that we see her with someone from another time period conveys the same idea.
Moving along, I agree with SmokeDetector's analysis of the situation, and to some extent, I have made rudimentary attempts to consolidate and post for deletion similar image redundancies. However, we tend to be pack rats around here, and everyone is afraid to throw away images. The fact of the matter is, they can always be replaced -- so why keep them around when they serve no purpose in the here-and-now?
Finally, regarding the need to combine multiple used images (re: Fredrickson/tug), admitted, I am probably the one who uploaded the Fredrickson/tug images (and likely other superflous ones) -- mind you, at a time before I realized how fragged our image archive was -- I am also one of the few consciously making an effort to correct such oversights. I've made a few forays into that realm, and have removed several TNG images that identified specific ships that were, in fact, all the same shots of stock footage. For example, there were only two notable shots of the Excelsior class along side the Enterprise, but these two shots were used something like 11 different time to represent something like 8 different ships. I believe at one point, each of those 8 ships had its own individual image, each nearly identical to the next. To remedy this, I established File:Excelsior starboard of Galaxy.jpg and File:Excelsior port of Galaxy.jpg -- restoring a respectable amount of MA image archive space. --Gvsualan 13:47, 12 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I've attempted to do something like this also -- to identify commonly reused shots and utilize them for ALL the occasions they were used (ex.: File:Enterprise-hit-by-weapon.jpg) -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk

Images credit for actorsEdit

Wouldn't it make sense to link to the name of the actor pictured in the image. I did this for some images, such as File:Davies.jpg, but some archivists have a habit of removing useful links from the image descriptions.

Is there some way we could convince archivists to stop doing this, or is it wrong to credit actors for the reproduction of their image? -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk 15:02, 6 Sep 2005 (UTC)

Good suggestion. Perhaps a format like on the character articles (indented, italicized, "X was played by Y.") might be a good compromise? -- Cid Highwind 15:35, 6 Sep 2005 (UTC)

Images from other language versions of MA Edit

Is it ok within Memory-Alpha policy to put images in an article that are present in another language version of the same article also in MA? Is there a way to do it without having to re-upload the file? Shanok 21:01, 17 January 2006 (UTC)

A little 'bump' here. I have the same doubt. Is it possible to use the same image link in another language version? Or should I upload the file again in such language version? Is there a kind of shared image database like Wikipedia's Commons? - Elentilion 02:38, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Right now, you have to re-upload the image to whichever language version you want. There is no Memory Alpha Commons (although we occasionally think of proposing one), and there is no way to link to images from other language versions for easy use in the articles. --OuroborosCobra talk 02:43, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Image description texts (moved from Memory Alpha:Ten Forward)Edit

When uploading a new image under an old filename, especially if the new image has different content, please check the description texts on the pages that already use this image. For example, an image on Weytahn was described as showing "two ships in orbit", although the image actually showing this was replaced with an image of just the planet some time ago. Thanks. Should this be added to our Memory Alpha:Image use policy? -- Cid Highwind 13:00, 8 Jan 2006 (UTC)

I would agree that this would make a good addition to policy. -- SmokeDetector47( TALK ) 03:49, 31 March 2006 (UTC)

SVG Support (moved from Memory Alpha:Ten Forward) Edit

hi, why MA does not support SVG-files and will this change soon? --Shisma 18:42, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

I don't know why, and what would we need them for? I've never heard of the format, but 90% of what we use for images comes from screencaps, which are best viewed in JPEG format. --Vedek Dukat Talk | Duty Roster 20:53, 7 February 2006 (UTC)
i have produce a lot of shematics for MA/de(here). i must save it into png, with limited resolution and transparency. in svg the file would be smaler and thoroughly scaleble. i think this database should provied more than only screencaps. :) --Shisma 10:15, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

Addition to policy pages: reproducing book art (moved from Memory Alpha:Ten Forward)Edit

Just clarifying a point regarding our image use policy, i recommend adding these explanations to some policy pages, just making sure that what i said conversationally matches with other admin's view of the copyright license's application on this matter, and we can entertain suggestions from the community as a whole here. -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk 02:36, 5 Dec 2005 (UTC)

From File talk:Ds9ops.jpg:
  • How is that (a reference works illustration) more of a copyright violation than a screencap, cover of a book, etc? Roar 21:42, 4 Dec 2005 (UTC)
    • A screencap is a scene from an episode -- you can see the episode for free on syndication. As long as you don't reproduce long video or audio clips, a still frame' isn't infringing the episode creator's right to sell or broadcast their product.
      • (however, despite a fair use of their image, using the still frame for a commercial (for profit) purpose is illegal, because they retain the copyright -- we have a non-commercial license -- we do not sell information or images for money)
    • A cover of a book is used to sell the book -- you can review it any time through a bookseller -- by reproducing it you aren't infringing the book creators' right to sell their product
    • A book's interior text and artwork should only be available to someone who has paid for the book -- copying or republishing artwork for free without permission infringes the rights of the artist and publisher to continue to sell the product. -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk 00:36, 5 Dec 2005 (UTC)

I'm speaking from my own point of view here, but it feels wrong to reproduce any or all of the illustrations made for various Star Trek texts that are copyrighted and in publication across the globe -- things like this are why our copyright license has to be so specific -- also, since this is a wiki, people should be finding ways to create their own accurate diagrams and illustrations, not resubmitting those of others. -- Captain Mike K. Barteltalk

I support these clarifications, a few months ago large parts from the fact files were uploaded to MA/de. Regarding user created schematics, de:Benutzer:Shisma was quite productive -- Kobi - (Talk) 17:26, 8 Dec 2005 (UTC)
Sorry for not responding to this earlier, but I agree (and already suggested some images for deletion). "Fair use" images used on MA should be restricted to screenshots and cover art. -- Cid Highwind 16:30, 5 Jan 2006 (UTC)
How about screen-caps that are available from Magazines? I know, if its either an artwork or something that hasn't come from on-screen sources, then its wrong, but what about if the picture is a screen-cap? I've got about 100 issues of Star Trek Monthly which have probably got some pretty useful images from on-screen shots. Are these useable? Zsingaya Talk 13:15, 22 January 2006 (UTC)

Just like Trek articles, it is best to go right to the source material. Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 107 of the U.S. Code states, in part: "the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction . . . , for purposes such as criticism, comment, . . . scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;
(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

My suggestion from the above, merely as a Memory Alpha contributor and not as legal advice, is that we do not use material scanned from the inside of books and magazines, regardless of where the book got it. After all, Memory Alpha sells ad space to Google and as someone pointed out above, the interior contents of a book are what cause people to want to buy it; revealling that on this site could interfere with that process. Both points would cut against fair use under the U.S. Code. So, as Cid said: screen-caps, book covers, and other material only with permission is the safest way to go. But that's just my opinion. Aholland 21:18, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

Image use in signatures Edit

I'd like to add a section to the policy, disallowing future use of any image in a signature. I just tried to use the link list of File:United Federation of Planets logo.svg, and failed miserably. That list is absolutely useless, because the image is used on every page where a specific user added a comment. So, in short, I'd like to add something along the lines of:

Images should not be used in signatures, and any image link used in such way may be removed by an admin.

and then make use of that new restriction by removing these signature images using my bot. -- Cid Highwind 22:40, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

I thought we already had this policy somewhere, that was why I asked Alan to have his bot remove File:Klingon Empire logo.png from my signature. Obviously I am not opposed to this, particularly when we had someone trying to add a 50 px image to their sig (that is what eventually brought me to come around to not using the images this way). --OuroborosCobra talk 22:51, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

You're right, I just found another discussion about this. Moved here, from Memory Alpha talk:Policies and guidelines:

Images in Sigs?Edit

The use of images in signatures is becoming troublesome. There is no policy on how large it can (or should) be, which can lead to awkwardness, at best. There is no policy on which images can (or should) be used. This leads to the "what links here" thing at the bottom of the images to get messy with lots of talk page links. I'm not sure what the best way to deal with this is, but I wanted to bring it up to gather the opinions of other people on this matter. -- Sulfur 23:15, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, I opposed making a rule on this when it was just certain people not liking how the code looked when editing talk pages, but the "links here" thing is a serious issue, as is the fact that these images become vandal targets and end up having to be protected. If we let this happen with any and every image, we run into the problem of having to protect all of these images that people happen to choice, and that runs counter to what a wiki is supposed to be like. --OuroborosCobra talk 23:20, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Removed a couple thingsEdit

I removed the following:

  • We have a finite amount of disk space and bandwidth available, and that space would be best used for adding more articles. The old adage "a picture is worth a thousand words" is quite literally true, considering average file sizes for images.
  • In terms of image file size, please also bear in mind that not everyone has a broadband internet connection. A considerable number of people have 56kbps modems or slower connections than that. Images stored in an article should generally be kept below 70 kilobytes in size, and 35 kilobytes or smaller is even better. Larger images are okay to use as a link, but please warn people that the image is larger. they are fairly obsolete. Before our move to Wikia, much of this was very much true, but no longer. I also updated the verbiage slightly for clarity. --Alan 22:46, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Modify policy to deprecate GIF and promote SVG Edit

GIF is an obsolescent format that should be avoided. I propose the removal of GIF from the list of acceptable image formats, in favor of SVG and PNG, with SVG being preferred. SVG is scalable and easier to modify than a raster format. Also, a new pna template should be created for GIF image pages requesting the image be replaced by SVG, or at least PNG. The remaining exception for GIF should be animated images, which are already discouraged by the policy. APNG is available, but it is a violation of the PNG spec and only supported by Firefox and Opera. Example images that should be replaced with SVG: File:Chronowerx logo.gif, File:Starfleet command logo, 22nd c.gif, File:Logo Kris phoenix.gif, File:Logo Obsidian Order.gif, File:Logo Obsidian Order.gif (Most everything uploaded by Kris Trigwell) --bp 05:52, April 9, 2010 (UTC)

I'm all for this, and would go so far as to say we remove GIF altogether. And this is coming from someone who has no idea how to make or use SVG. - Archduk3 06:11, April 9, 2010 (UTC)

There is a good, free (as in freedom), tool called Inkscape that can be used to compose or edit SVG images. --bp 06:57, April 9, 2010 (UTC)

I will look into that, thanks. :) - Archduk3 07:11, April 9, 2010 (UTC)
No offense, but someone who "doesn't know how to make or use SVG" shouldn't even try to attempt a GIF->SVG conversion. In fact, I don't think that a simple conversion is a good idea at all. Automated conversion most often leads to less than stellar results. If someone (who knows what he's doing) creates a vector graphic from scratch, and perhaps even manages to upload/link to a screenshot of the original (unlike Kris) and on top of that perhaps doesn't use the most restricting image license possible, then why not. I don't think SVG should be made mandatory, though. GIF->PNG8 is something I'd endorse - although that, too, doesn't need to be made a mandatory part of the policy. It would suffice to state that we consider PNG to be the preferred format and that, in case of having both, we're going to delete the GIF one. -- Cid Highwind 10:12, April 9, 2010 (UTC)

I am not proposing any automated conversion from GIF to SVG. I am proposing that we strongly discourage uploading of new GIFs, and use a pna template on existing GIF image pages that requests an SVG version of the image be uploaded to replace it. The replacement image should have been created as an SVG, not converted from a raster format. --bp 15:10, April 9, 2010 (UTC)

Re: Cid - None taken, but I'm not purposing I do any of those things. I'm just for changing the policy to say we don't want GIF files anymore. - Archduk3 18:31, April 9, 2010 (UTC)
Suggestion - GIF is already called a "last resort" format in the nutshell version at the top of the page. Later, it reads:
  • Drawings, icons, political maps, flags and other such images (basically those with large, simple, and continuous blocks of color) should be in SVG, PNG or GIF format.
This could be changed, and another paragraph added, to read as follows:
  • Drawings, icons, political maps, flags and other such images (basically those with large, simple, and continuous blocks of color) should be in SVG or PNG format.
    • GIF format images can be uploaded if the contributor is unable to convert the image to PNG or SVG himself. However, a "PNA" notice should be added to these uploads, and the image be converted as soon as possible.
    • SVG format images should not be created by automatic conversion from a low resolution source image, as this leads to images of inferior quality.
-- Cid Highwind 19:39, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

Thats pretty close to what I proposed. I want the language to be as strong as possible to discourage GIFs, and a PNA notice for GIF images requesting that a SVG or PNG replacement be uploaded. Also, an edit of MediaWiki:Uploadtext to discourage GIFs. This isn't a massive overhaul by any means, just a move to actively discourage images in this poor format. --bp 19:46, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

Sounds good to me. - Archduk3 22:17, April 12, 2010 (UTC)

Ok then. --bp 00:34, April 14, 2010 (UTC)

Screencap resolution Edit

Also, I would like to propose an addition for screencap resolution and aspect ratio. The screencap resolution should be 1:1 to the source material, and the aspect ratio of the source should be preserved. Basically, it means that when taking screencaps from DVD, for example, the video should be "zoomed" at 100%, and not fullscreen. I'm still working on details and better explanation of why... I've already had this discussion somewhere and I need to find it. --bp 19:59, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

Yes, that only makes sense. Grab only at native resolution. Images will probably be rescaled by MediaWiki later, anyway - so it's better to rescale just once instead of multiple times. -- Cid Highwind 20:12, April 11, 2010 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I overall agree with Bp. It is certainly annoying when a fullscreen cap of an image is taken, and then someone uploads it at 1200 pixels wide when the original source material was standard definition. You don't get anymore detail, and you don't need the image to be any larger. It just makes for bloated files. There are SOME exceptions to this, though. File:Guidance and navigation relay.jpg would be an example. This has been magnified above the original size, and the result IS a fuzzy image, but it is a fuzzy image that actually lets you see the subject at all. In the original resolution, you can't even really see anything. So there might need to be reasonable exceptions for things that were very small on the screen, such as small objects, background people, background starships, etc.
Not sure what you mean with aspect ration. I'll take up the G&N Relay image as an example again. The source material, being Deep Space Nine, had an aspect ratio of 4:3, IIRC. This image has an aspect ratio of 1:1, because it is a cap of only a small part of the image. Are you meaning that all images should be 4:3, or simply not ending up "stretched" or "deformed" compared to their original source? I'm guessing you mean the latter, in which case I am in complete agreement. --OuroborosCobra talk 20:14, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

To clarify, I meant pixel aspect ratio, not image aspect ratio. An image may be cropped to a different ratio of width to height, but the pixels in it should have the same ratio in geometry as the source material. --bp 20:21, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

I found a couple of them: Forum:Standard Image Size or Max, and File talk:Vulcan desert night wide.jpg, but I think the best one was on an image talk page the was deleted. Anyway... the proposed Screencap section text should go something like this:

Full screen captures should be uploaded as JPG images, in the same pixel aspect ratio and resolution as the original DVD or Blu-ray source material, and without additional compression. Screen captures that are cropped should still have the same pixel size as the original source material. The exception being the moderate enlargement of cropped images of very small objects, although this is not necessary as the image can be resized as needed by the wiki software. Any cropped or resized image should still have the same pixel aspect ratio as the source material. There are specific exceptions to this rule, for example when the image has also been rotated and/or perspective-corrected, but generally this does not happen.

As an example: for standard definition DVD (TNG, DS9,VOY), the Region 1 resolution is 720x480. Uploading an enlarged screencap, say 1024x768, does not add any extra information, and may actually reduce the quality and blurr otherwise sharp parts of the image. Also, if the image is being scaled to fullscreen the pixel aspect ratio may be changed.

The general rule is that the a full screen capture should be taken while viewing the DVD in "windowed mode" with the "100% Zoom" setting of the DVD playback software. Then it can be cropped as needed, preferrably with a tool like JPEGcrop that does not recompress the image.

That last paragraph is the important part I guess, as it is actually a guideline. The rest could probably be worded better. --bp 21:17, April 11, 2010 (UTC)

I added this to the policy, albeit reworded. - Archduk3 19:06, April 21, 2010 (UTC)

Right on. --bp 19:44, April 21, 2010 (UTC)

w00t --OuroborosCobra talk 20:50, April 21, 2010 (UTC)

General question about copyrightEdit

So if i wanted to upload an image of an actor that is available online, could i do that? And if so, how do i cite it? I have noticed that many actors' pages do not have a picture of the actor themselves but one of them in their role in a Star Trek production. I find that not only annoying and redundant (often the actor pic and the article pic of the character are the same) but i think it would definitely be nice for everyone to see a picture of the stars "out of character". So from what i understand, images that can be found all over the internet are considered "public domain" and as such posting them would be within our rights according to the "U.S. Copyright Fair Use Act (title 17, U.S. Code.)". I wanted to clear this before I upload a picture. I have read about the public domain rule a lot but I dont know if MA is operating under some other strange policy no one has ever heard of and which we must adhere to. – Distantlycharmed 03:25, November 14, 2010 (UTC)

Technically, you still need permission from the person who posted the image unless they specifically give permission in a capacity such as wikipedia. Images are not public domain, by default, if they're on the internet. You still need to reference the original author in some manner. It's best if you take a photo yourself and upload it. I wish it was easier to do that though! If you find a photo you'd like to use, contact the website and see if they will let you first. — Morder (talk) 03:54, November 14, 2010 (UTC)

So what do you mean with technically? Isnt Title 17, U.S. Code specific enough? Many celebrity oriented websites, for example (there are all kinds), post pictures under that "public domain" and "Fair Use Act" - and they use "U.S. Copyright Fair Use Act (title 17, U.S. Code.)" under their copyright disclaimer cleared by their legal team/lawyer etc. So why cant we? And actually they are considered public domain by virtue of being on the internet - unless the website specifically states that images are not to be used without explicit prior permission by owner. If everyone operated under this dubious MA policy there wouldnt be any pictures on the internet. Go celebrity hunting is not a viable option and sometimes it is next to impossible to track down the original photographer, yet all sorts of pictures exist. I think it is important we found a clear answer to this question. I doubt I would be in violation of any copyright laws if i used the Fair Use Act, Title 17 U.S. Code under the copyright/licence page - unless someone can cite me another legal statute explicitly prohibiting such use.

And by the way, sometimes contacting the admin of a website to ask for permission is pointless as they themsleves are most likely not the owner and in fact are using the image under the Fair Use Act - legally - just like we should be doing. – Distantlycharmed 04:10, November 14, 2010 (UTC)

Well first, a picture simply being found all over the internet doesn't make it public domain. Being public domain makes it public domain. I realize that sounds a little circular, so let me explain. If I take a Metallica song and post it on a webpage, and then someone else downloads it off my page and posts it on their's, and eventually it ends up on 500,000 webpages ("all over the internet") it has not become public domain or legal under fair use. Each of those 500,000 pages is in breach of Metallica's copyright of that song. Then again, if I post a recording of a Klezmer song from 1913 on my webpage, it may be public domain even if I am the only webpage posting it (it isn't "all over the internet"). It is public domain because copyright laws have given a limit to how long the copyright can exist.
If a website is correctly claiming an image as public domain, then we can use it here. We don't need prior permission of the owner. If it's public domain, it is in the domain of the public do use for basically whatever they want, include MA. We'd want to slap a public domain tag, but that's just a formality.
A website claiming something is "fair use" becomes a bit harder. First, many people claim something is "fair use" when it isn't, with the converse also being true (many people claim something to not be "fair use" when it actually is). Fair use is one of the least understood aspects of copyright law. I have a parent who worked heavily in public access cable television with regards to fair use, and I still don't have a great understanding of it. One very important point to make is that just because one website has properly and legally declared their use of an image to be "fair use," it doesn't mean that we can do the same. The rules regarding "fair use" have a lot to do with how you are going to use something. For example, a free documentary on public access may be able to use a portion of a song under "fair use," while someone releasing a DVD of that documentary for money will not be able to do so. One is free public education, the other is a for profit commercial venture. One is "fair use," the other is "copyright infringement."
I'm not really sure where MA falls under that. Certainly as editors we aren't making a profit on our ventures here, but Wikia is.
If we can claim use of something under "fair use," we don't need prior permission from the owner. We certainly aren't getting it from CBS/Paramount for screencaps. If we cannot claim something under "fair use" or "public domain," meaning that we have a copyrighted work that we have no legal claim or right to use, then we need permission to post it. The owner of the copyright has the ability to grant us permission to post their copyrighted work. --OuroborosCobra talk 05:08, November 14, 2010 (UTC)
What OC said... :) I'd just like to add: "Fair use" is actually not the best-possible premise to base image uploads on, but one of the weaker ones we have. Wherever possible, "fair use" images should be replaced with one where the licensing explicitly allows us to use the image. I mentioned Flickr as a possible resource years ago here, and while the exact URL might have changed by now, there surely still is a way to search for CC-licensed images on Flickr. Those can be reused here when using proper attribution (depending on exact licensing there!). What should not be done is that random users from here go out and ask random website owners elsewhere for permission to use random images from their pages. As has been shown here, image copyrights is something not well-understood by many, so the answers to these requests most probably won't be worth anything. -- Cid Highwind 12:17, November 14, 2010 (UTC)

Policy clarification regarding "fanmade" images Edit

On Memory Alpha:Files for deletion, images (File:Map alpha quadrant.jpg‎ and others) have been put up for deletion with the reasoning that they are "fanmade" - basically, all information contained in the image is either "canon" (most important stuff) or from real-life (window-dressing), combined with some markup like lines, text and colored areas, but the combination has not been created by someone who worked on the show.

If that deletion goes through, I intend to clarify this policy by adding the sentence "Fan-created images are not to be used in in-universe articles.", both in the section "Copyright" where there's a paragraph talking about such images, as well as in the numbered list at the top of the page. -- Cid Highwind 11:41, January 11, 2012 (UTC)

It might help if you waited until you got a response elsewhere before coming here and laying out you little tantrum ultimatum. Try and keep it to one page in the future. - Archduk3 11:47, January 11, 2012 (UTC)


Turns out a discussion like this is considered useful by others as well, so I'd like to continue it. First, restating some things: we do have images that would not be a "valid resource" according to MA:CANON. Those images are typically created by ourselves, for use (also) in in-universe articles to show something that has already been shown in "canon" (basically, there's a screenshot of it), just in a somehow "better" form. These images currently are allowed by this policy - and they are neither against the letter nor against the spirit of MA:CANON, because that policy simply doesn't apply: the images are not supposed to be used "as a resource", which is what MA:CANON talks about, but rather to "present information that already has a resource".

With the other discussion in mind, the questions that need to be answered are: Do we want to uphold this policy, or do we want to change it? If we want to uphold it, how can we clarify it so that such deletion discussions are not repeated. If we don't want to uphold it (or if you think that this policy does not state what I believe it states), how should we rephrase/clarify it to make clear some other position? If we change the policy, what types of self-created images do we want to allow, and what types do we want to exclude?

There's a whole variety of ways this could go:

  1. On the one end, we could be very strict and state that no self-created images are allowed (at all, or at least in in-universe parts of articles). This is what I suggested above, and would affect the galaxy map File:Map alpha quadrant.jpg‎‎, but also a whole range of other images, from "alien script" collections, over "rank insignia", to "organization logos", and probably beyond. All these would then need to be deleted (if we go for "not at all"), or moved to background sections (if we go for "not in in-universe parts").
  2. On the other end, we could be very lax about it and state that a self-created image is allowed as long as a description of that image would be allowed in the same section of an article. This would allow, for example, the "rank insignia" images for ranks that have been seen in in-universe sections, and the "interpolated rank insignia" in background sections. It would also allow the galaxy map, but perhaps not all "alien script" images.
  3. Somewhere in the middle would be a statement like "self-created images are allowed only if they faithfully (in every detail) reproduce something that is canon, and if they are necessary". Depending on a more thorough definition of what "every detail" and "necessary" means, this could either allow or disallow the galaxy map. It would allow "seen rank insignia", disallow "interpolated rank insignia" and most "alien scripts", allow some but not all "organization logos" depending on how exact they really are, and so on. Going this way would make most sense if it was accompanied by a statement that says "every self-created work needs to link to one or more screenshots showing the same object, so that the faithfulness of the reproduction can be checked."
  4. Other statements are possible, too. They just should be generic enough to not be a ruling for or against some specific image we currently have.

So, what does everyone think about this? Which direction should we go with this policy? -- Cid Highwind 12:12, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

You're flat out wrong, and thanks for inviting me to the party.
You're wikilawyering, specifically "abiding by the letter of a policy or guideline while violating its spirit or underlying principles". You're "playing policies against each other" and "relying upon the letter of policy as a defense when breaking the spirit of policy", specifically stating that the canon policy doesn't apply to images even though the spirit of the canon policy is that "material used and presented on MA be directly from "canon" Star Trek productions or accepted licensed works as outlined here". The use of the term "fan-made", "cherry pick[ed]" from the image policy, is blown way out of proportion. You've, right now, "attempting to force an untoward interpretation of policy" and trying to "impose [your] own view of "standards to apply" rather than those of the community" by suggesting these slight wording issues somehow invalidates years of community consensus that "fan made images that aren't faithful reproductions of material seen in canon are non-canon and should be deleted". You examples aren't even internally consistent, and you're token "last option" just proves you're intent, as stating that "fan made images that aren't faithful reproductions of material seen in canon are unacceptable" would "specifically" "be a ruling [...] against" your quadrant images, which by the way I'm sure a "retarded monkey" could reproduce. I find what you're attempting here, and you personally Cid, to be repugnant in the extreme. Maybe in your over half a decade of "not giving a shit" here you forgot what were suppose to be doing. As someone who seems to think that using direct quotes by production personal to name people or places "unnamed" in canon should be done on a case by case basis, I find your insistence that a blanket statement be made here, now that you finally have some "skin in the game", to be questionable at best. At worst, you're nothing but a charlatan and snake oil salesman trying once again to influence policy you then won't be bothered to enact yourself, for fear of being made to "jump though some hoops". - Archduk3 13:27, January 13, 2012 (UTC)
Cid, I'm leaning towards your last suggestion. I've seen encyclopedias all over the place with illustrations created by the writers of the encyclopedia. I don't see why doing something similar here goes against MA:CANON. I also don't see how doing so would exclude the quadrant images in question, as I don't believe they claim to be accurate maps of the galaxy, they are merely a visual aid to delineate quadrants for readers- much like most outlines of the United States, which don't accurately show every nook and cranny of the coastline. Our goal should be to describe and display canon information in ways to help readers, which helps us be "accessible" as the main page states. --31dot 13:45, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

31dot, thanks for weighing in and for the support regarding my interpretation of the current policies. I've changed the list to numbered, so that we can better discuss it. With "last suggestion", I guess you are referring to #3? -- Cid Highwind 14:42, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

Case in point, File:Warp field.png (which I've restored to make it easier to see), an image that can be used to show a concept supported by canon facts but never visually depicted in this manner. This was deleted because it was non-canon ("unnecessary fan-made image" and "never featured in Star Trek"). The closest image it we have from a canon source is File:Enterprise D warp field.jpg, which is here because of the discussion on if png image was accurate or not. This image wouldn't replace a canon one if used, like the four images Cid is pushing this whole policy change for, but might be helpful. This image alone had four people agree that it should be deleted because of that canon policy, which means that the other three, since I'm included in the total, must have read something in the canon policy that applied here, and I find this attempt to twist those words into something else entirely shameful. Since Cid can't be bothered to support his own view or even attempt to apply this fairly by going through the deletion log, I can just keep added these here for him, since I don't want him to have to do anything around here that might look like work. At the very least, the users still here that are involved in this one discussion should be contacted about this, if not every user who has agreed these types of images shouldn't be used. - Archduk3 14:58, January 13, 2012 (UTC)
Instead of coming up with tons of examples as to things done in the past, how about we deal with the present? Then we can reconsider things deleted previously.
In the case of that image you presented? I'd still suggest that it is still invalid. It doesn't present what the canon image does. -- sulfur 15:10, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

Which also was the point of Pseudohuman on both the image talk page and later the deletion discussion, and which was apparently shared by the other two participants in that discussion. I still see a difference between that case and the one we're (also) talking about here. -- Cid Highwind 15:17, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

The fact that it doesn't present what the canon image does is the point. It shows in image form what has been described in dialog and in other canon images. It visually describes the text. We already have an image of the quadrants, why would we need more, and if we did, they should be recreations, not what we're currently talking about. There are tons of bg images that meet Cid's "requirements", but none of those would be used outside of the bg sections. Attempting to allow completely fan created images in the canon sections of articles is steps beyond moving production image up out of the background, and dressing it up doesn't change the fact that allowing this undermines everything this site has ever stood for, tried to do, and how it's used. - Archduk3 15:31, January 13, 2012 (UTC)
Cid, I was indeed referring to number 3. --31dot 15:35, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

Archduk3, that may be your point, but it is not the reason that Pseudohuman stated when bringing it up for deletion. To quote: "While it is possible to speculate that star trek warp drive does similar things to space, the evidence just isn't there yet to make this a valid picture for use in Memory Alpha."

31dot, thanks. What do you think should we say about the level of "faithfulness" a self-created image needs? I believe the "canon comparison image" should be placed on the image description page of the self-created one in any case. -- Cid Highwind 15:52, January 13, 2012 (UTC)

"I would say that the main reason for removal should be that this image in my view belongs in the category of Fan-made blueprints and specifications which is an invalid resource in our canon policy." I agreed with that, I deleted the image myself, so I don't need you to tell me an incomplete picture of what happened, I gave enough "shits" to be there, supporting an image that wasn't mine. Don't just go around repeating only the parts that agree with you, show the whole thing. The fact that there are debatable problems with the image wasn't the main reason, the fact it was non-canon and fan-made was. This image was used in the background section, you want yours in the canon section, stop ignoring the real issue. - Archduk3 16:08, January 13, 2012 (UTC)
Cid, yes, that should be there. As for the rest of your question I will have to offer an answer at a later time, as I'm running out of time right now.--31dot 16:11, January 13, 2012 (UTC)
My first thought is to suggest that we say that a necessary self-made image should be "as faithful as reasonably possible to the information being depicted." Much as there are "canon comparison images", perhaps the image pages of self-made images could also contain text describing the rationale for the image, where there might not be an image easily available. --31dot 02:55, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

31dot, I agree that this would be a sensible statement - but still fear that it could leave enough wiggle room for further, endless discussions about what exactly is "reasonable". :) Perhaps we can avoid that, at least to some degree, by putting up a list of example images here, which we can use to determine which of those would be allowed or not allowed according to our implicit "policy draft" here at any time. I think it would be nice if everyone involved brought up some images (but not too many, perhaps 4-5 max?) that could then be used in the discussion. I guess the one that started this whole discussion as well as the warp field one are good "automatic" candidates, and would add my own later. -- Cid Highwind 12:49, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

I would like to see as much as possible only canon screencaps in in-universe sections and pics scanned from valid bg-sources in bg-sections. But, I dont have a problem with self-made images when they are limited to be 100% accurate and faithful to what has been seen onscreen when they depict symbol-stuff like insignia, fonts and flags and such. I think the line should be drawn there though, self-made images of clothing, lifeforms, phonomena, maps, technology, ships, specs, charts, etc should not be allowed. and we should definitely not have self-made images with added speculative details anywhere in ma. That's my opinion. --Pseudohuman 14:38, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

Pseudohuman, thanks for weighing in. If we go that route (of just allowing "100% accurate" images), how do you suggest we make sure that this really is the case? For example, how can we determine, even in the future, that File:Borg alphanumeric code.gif really is totally accurate? How accurate is File:Breen Confederacy logo.png - and how accurate is "100% accurate" in that case (for example, regarding different coloring in past revisions of that file)? What makes "insignia, fonts and flags and such" different enough from the other things you list so that one can be allowed while the other can not? Also, what about "extrapolations" of canon stuff, like unseen rank insignia? They are not "from valid bg-sources", so would you want to allow those? Why/why not? -- Cid Highwind 15:02, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

(edit conflict)Most of those categories of images you describe as unacceptable wouldn't be allowed anyway as they would require too much speculation. One question this discussion is trying to settle are whether the quadrant images listed at images for deletion (whose purpose is to provide a visual aid of where quadrants are) and perhaps things like alien written languages (that weren't clearly seen), and possibly images that are altered, are permitted. The larger issue (at least, to me) seems to be how to mesh MA:IMAGE (which allows for fan-made images) with MA:CANON (which describes valid resources of information).
Cid, I did foresee what you said about my statement- although I didn't really have anything better to suggest. :) Eventually I'll bring up some images to discuss here.--31dot 15:08, January 14, 2012 (UTC)
The only thing we need in the policy is a clearly defined "word" for reproductions since this entire problem has been about the poor use of the term "fan-created" in one policy when another policy has always been clearly about not using "fan-created" stuff on this site. There is nothing wrong with expecting each "user generated" (for lack of a better term) reproduction to be able to stand on its own merits, including the intended use and the accuracy of said image. We shouldn't expect perfection, since it's not required, but images should be "very" accurate based on the avalible information. - Archduk3 15:27, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

It might have shortened the whole discussion somewhat, had that (which, BTW, closely resembles my suggestion #3) been your original position - instead of stating that it might be good enough to highlight something on a canon image (thus changing it in a way that is not a "reproduction"), but not good enough to do the same on an image that employs a different form of not being a "reproduction". Also, "standing on its own merits" swings both ways, which means that there needs to be some more meat to a deletion discussion than just "it's fan made" - simply because something that falls under the new term of allowed "user generated reproduction" is "fan made", too. And for that meat, it would be better to have some guidelines (which we are trying to find here) than to have none and hope for the best the next time some image needs to be deleted or kept. -- Cid Highwind 15:53, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

A shorter discussion could have been achieved by simply not dismissing out of hand the canon policy, and instead suggesting a clarification of what "fan-made blueprints and specifications" meant and how much that was intended to cover, as well as starting from the viewpoint that the consensus set by years of precedent should be respected and maybe written down instead of completely reversed. I suggested that labeling and/or highlighting a canon image might be acceptable (hence standing on it's own merit), not that it was already acceptable (huge difference there), nor would I have suggested we simply create an image if it wasn't. I don't have a problem with having a discussion on what a "user generated" reproduction should be or what "standing on its own merits" should apply to, but I do have a problem with what this discussion was about, and the how and why we were having it. - Archduk3 17:31, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

I'd just like to note that a "user-generated" image about the galactic quadrants survived in plain view for 8 full years - so it's not exactly as if there hasn't been any at least implicit consensus about that image - or, even more extreme, that there has been an explicit consensus against these images for all those years. If there has been any sort of "precedent", it's one of being inconsistent in regards to what images survive on this site for longer than a week. So, the problem I have had with the discussion so far is the still ongoing one of being pictured as someone who tries to reverse consensus (and all the other crazy and clearly wrong stuff I've been called). If you'd finally stop doing that, we could talk. -- Cid Highwind 17:55, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

Actions set a precedent, such as deletions, doing nothing doesn't, it simply means nothing has been done yet. If inaction is the defense your trying here, then it's your inaction, since this image has existed as long as you have. I suggested and made changes to the deletion policy to reduce our risk in regards to copyright to a week, and I have made a point to enforce it since then, but I'm not going to allow you to suggest that I "don't give a shit" when it comes to this site because I didn't deal with every missing citation as well at the same time. Don't even dare try to suggest that your attempt to reverse the implicit consensus years of actions have created, and the spirit of the canon policy, by saying that a poor wording choice in one policy and some inaction regarding citations is somehow our fault. You are the problem you see here regarding inaction, just like we all are, but what you've done here because of that is everything I've said it is, and you should be ashamed of yourself for even trying it. I'm not interested in talking to you Cid, since you've made it abundantly clear over the years that you are not interested in talking to me, and quite frankly right now I simply don't want to. - Archduk3 19:27, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

That's just more nonsense, then - from the idea that not deleting something on a wiki in nearly a decade doesn't mean absolutely anything, over the statement that it has to mean nothing because "you", specifically, didn't deal with it - vs. the whole community of eight years not doing anything about it - right through the loads of schoolyard bullying you are attempting again. The probably only thing that is really true is your childish conclusion of "no, I don't want to talk to you anymore". Well, so be it, but that doesn't have to mean that I have to stop talking to you - or rather, stop commenting on the stuff you post here - too. There are still so many unanswered questions throughout the whole discussion, and not only those posed by me, that one really has to question your way "discussing" things. I'm surely not the only one who notices that. -- Cid Highwind 21:51, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

"Nonsense"? "Childish"? You're the idiot that brought up the timetable of a week, which is something I do. If I don't it, it tends to not get done at all, because god knows you aren't here to make any edits for the community, you're only here to make edits for you. I'm sure I'm also not the only one here who thinks you're full of it, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to call you on it every god damn time you do it from now on, and treat you the same way. I'm also sure I'm not the only one here who's seen though your bull to the way try and control how these little "discussions" work out. You wouldn't know a neutral tone if it walked up and slapped you in the face, let alone an honest and open discussion. It might help if your style of "discussion" wasn't down right condescending and continually moving away from the "middle", as opposed to trying to reach some sort of compromise. That is after all, why were here now, jumping through hoops instead of done with this. - Archduk3 22:25, January 14, 2012 (UTC)
I would suggest that further comments critical of other users personally or their motives take place elsewhere, if at all. I have no means to compel either of you to do so, but these sort of posts are getting in the way of addressing the issue we are all trying to discuss here. Let's try to stick to the issue here. --31dot 23:11, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

redux IIEdit

To restart and hopefully finish this, I will lead off by saying that I maintain my views from above(regarding the middle-of-the-road suggestion. --31dot 18:53, February 16, 2012 (UTC)

Can you quote what that suggestion would be? I can't quite make out which comment of the above discussion you're referring to. -- Cid Highwind 20:49, February 16, 2012 (UTC)
  • "Somewhere in the middle would be a statement like "self-created images are allowed only if they faithfully (in every detail) reproduce something that is canon, and if they are necessary". Depending on a more thorough definition of what "every detail" and "necessary" means, this could either allow or disallow the galaxy map. It would allow "seen rank insignia", disallow "interpolated rank insignia" and most "alien scripts", allow some but not all "organization logos" depending on how exact they really are, and so on. Going this way would make most sense if it was accompanied by a statement that says "every self-created work needs to link to one or more screenshots showing the same object, so that the faithfulness of the reproduction can be checked." "

We were kind of working out the specifics above before the discussion died down.--31dot 20:57, February 16, 2012 (UTC)

Ah, I see now - and agree with that being a good starting position, as well as with the comments that have been made regarding some "proof image plus description" to be placed on the image description page. What we couldn't figure out yet was a good enough description of the "level of accuracy" we want to strive for. Do we want to go the "example images" route again, or try to find a way out without that? :) -- Cid Highwind 23:33, February 16, 2012 (UTC)

I think Pseudo might have been on the right track with his "100%" comment, though I'm not entirely sure yet how to fine tune that. --31dot 01:03, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

Nitpicking should not be allowed. 100% is too high of a threshold if "perfection isn't required". We should strive for 100%, but small errors shouldn't remove an image from an article anymore than ambiguity in the text would have us remove the whole page. - Archduk3 01:27, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

That phrase (strive for 100%) would probably work, or it could be some lower numerical figure. I agree images should not be nitpicked. --31dot 01:37, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

Images removed.
I don't believe that a statement using another numerical value like, for example, "we want 85% accuracy" is one that will work in practice. "Striving for complete accuracy" sounds good, but perhaps we can use some example images to see if and why they are not there yet, and where "more than small" errors may be. I compiled some from the discussions left and right (subsection below), perhaps everyone can just state which one of those are acceptable and which not, and why. -- Cid Highwind 10:42, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

My opinion right now:

  1. not permitted on poor quality grounds
  2. depends on the purpose- as an accurate map of the galaxy, no, as an illustration of quadrant boundaries, possibly
  3. while not perfect, permitted as the best possible recreation
  4. permitted as a recreation of set information (a description or image of where it was recreated from would be nice)
  5. not permitted as an extrapolation (unless a recreation of set information) --31dot 14:23, February 17, 2012 (UTC)
Images removed.
Cid's examples:
  1. Poor quality when compared to the current map (as well as #2), unusable
  2. Not an accurate recreation of a canon map (as well as #1), unusable
  3. What 31dot said, though there shouldn't be a background
  4. Accurate enough recreation, and it only took me slightly less than a min to find the source screenshot at Trekcore, so I'm not sure why it's being described as hard to cite in that manner
  5. Case by case basis, depending on use and source for the information (apocryphal ranks can be covered in the appendices)
As for the Terran Empire logos, these are two examples of images that aren't 100% for some reason of another, as the TOS one did have a center line running down the blade, and the ENT one only shows what was used on uniforms, and not elsewhere. Do we need to remove the TOS one because of the minor error? Do we need another ENT one for the other version of the logo? I say no to both of those questions. - Archduk3 14:58, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

Agree on the mirror universe logo images.--31dot 15:09, February 17, 2012 (UTC)

I had hoped that we could assess these images only regarding the terms we actually want to define ("accuracy") and not in general "image usability" terms ("quality"). I'll give it a try:
  1. The first image might be of poor quality and uncited, but this is not what we should be talking about here. If other content (text) on our site is of poor quality and uncited, we don't simply delete it - we copyedit the wording, and add a citation. The same applied here for consistence means that, if we're solely talking about image accuracy, this image is basically the same as #2, and should be handled alike.
  2. The second image is a sort of "copyedit" of the first, removing image problems other than its accuracy - so let's assess only that:
    • if we're going for "totally strict recreations of what was seen on-screen", then we have to admit that this image is not. It was not seen on-screen 100% like that.
    • However, if we're going for "a reasonably accurate presentation of what we know is canon", then I say this image passes. We know that this is how the quadrants are laid out, and we know that there must be a barred-spiral galaxy somewhere, because our galaxy is one and some of its arms had been named in canon. We can't be sure that the exact image of the galaxy has all billions of stars at the correct position (or similar stuff), but that would be a request "beyond reasonable", because those minutiae are not the real point of having or using this image.
  3. The third image should be handled consistently with the second one. It is a reasonably accurate presentation of borg script characters (quality aside, mind you), but it is not a strict recreations of any specific borg computer screen that had exactly these characters in exactly that order and colors. Either it should be deleted if #2 is deleted, or it can be kept if #2 is kept.
  4. The fourth image may or may not be even a "totally strict" recreations - but it's a good example of an image where we should also have a "source screenshot", so that we don't have to rely on external sources to assess and eventually re-assess its accuracy, even if that source can be found "easily".
  5. The fifth image is not a strict recreation either, and should be handled consistently with #2/#3. If the argument is that this image can be kept as a "good-enough interpolation" for use in background sections, then it should also be valid to use #2/#3 there without them being necessarily deleted.
  6. The mirror universe logos are another case of #2/#3/#5 - not a strict recreation (as has been stated), but a "reasonably accurate" one - so either to be kept with the others, or to be deleted with the others. That said, of course we should at least mention that they are not strictly accurate, so that some interested editor could work on them and create a better version.
As you can see, I believe that we should handle both different images, and different forms of content (images vs. text) consistently. I don't see a proper reason for handling one image different from another. -- Cid Highwind 12:37, February 19, 2012 (UTC)

I pretty much agree with your assessment. There might be other reasons to delete any of these images- but #2 isn't any different than most of these other examples in terms of deciding whether or not to keep it solely on "invalid recreation" grounds.--31dot 14:43, February 19, 2012 (UTC)

A "reasonably accurate" recreation is one where the image is recreating an image seen in canon ("image" here includes logos, ranks, and "fonts"). The first two are fan made crap in that regard, and should be deleted on those grounds, since "unused" is no longer enough. The third one recreates canon symbols used in the same context, if not together. If you insist on complaining about the order and presentation Cid, then do something about it. Take every single image like this and break them down to "one image, one symbol" versions. In the end, having one all inclusive example image is far easier, but if you insist, a table (since a gallery would just be wasting space will all the padding) might be a fun way to display these. As for calling for "consistently" now, #5 is intended to only be used in a real world manner, while the rest are not, so you've stacked the deck again to make a "point" that the reality of the situation just doesn't support. Also, read what I said again about the mirror universe logos, as the second one is a "strict recreation" (as in 95%+, which is what I assume "strict" is suppose to mean), just that more than one version was seen in use. To save time, I'll break this down easily enough, I will never allow your images to be used in canon articles Cid. You can keep wasting time trying to bend this over backwards to support that, but the fact of the manner is those are non-canon, and you know it. If you really want to deal with things "consistently", just agree that "Images used in canon sections of articles should either be directly from a canon source, or a recreation of material seen in one. Recreations should strive for complete accuracy of the source material." so we can get back to things that aren't you just trying to "win" the argument. - Archduk3 16:50, February 19, 2012 (UTC)

I don't think ultimatums or threats are particularly helpful here, regardless of how they are justified(and I don't care to debate that here). Doing so against a consensus(not saying there is one here) would seem to be disrupting MA to make a point. But again, I don't care to debate that here.

I don't see how the images in question would not comply with your suggested policy above, at least any more than a written description of the image would be. I haven't really seen an answer to this so I will ask: Is Wikipedia and most every other encyclopedia wrong to have images, sketches, or graphs that the writers of said encyclopedias created? And if not, why is it not OK here?

The question here is, what is our goal? If the goal is to have only canon images or recreations of things that are too blurry in canon to be seen, then, yes, the quadrants images should go along with a lot of others. If the goal is to be helpful to readers with our presentation of canon information, as most encyclopedias strive for, then we should have a clearly defined policy about how far that can go(which is closer to the status quo than not allowing them at all).--31dot 22:50, February 19, 2012 (UTC)

31dot: 100% spot on! :)
Also, if "I will never allow [the quadrant images] to be used in canon articles" is a proper way to handle this, then I could just turn that around and state that "I will never allow the script graphics to be used, either" (after all, I should be allowed to state the same that someone else states) - and we'd just end up with a "very strict" handling of images, where images that even just a single person doesn't approve of are thrown out immediately. I don't think that's a sensible solution. -- Cid Highwind 23:08, February 19, 2012 (UTC)
Comparing MA to Wikipedia (or even most other wikis) here isn't a good analogy, as Wikipedia covers almost every source for information available. We specifically only include information from a very limited number of sources, even when compared to MB, so there isn't any "right or wrong" on the table here, it's are we sticking to the idea that we should only include canon information or not. The other problem with comparisons is our POV, which unlike most wikis is fictional because it's in universe, so using images not seen in universe is a POV break. Unless you're now purposing to rewire the entire wiki to include these fan made images, even over a plethora of valid bg images, I would drop the every one else is doing it tactic, as that doesn't even work for naming unnamed things and people. After all, is it a Type 10 shuttlecraft like everyone else says it is, or a Chaffee type shuttlepod? Is NASA an accept source now? We allow the types of images Wikipedia uses in the background sections of articles, but these images aren't meant for those sections, and shouldn't be used in them anyways because we have loads of images that are better than them that can be.
The stated goal here is to only allow canon material in canon sections, so no, the goal isn't to be as helpful to readers in presenting canon information to the point of allowing non canon information, because if it was, we would allow production images to be used in articles well before we would allow this. "Definitive" and "accurate" precedes "accessible", and with good reason. You can argue these images are accessible, but they are definitively not accurate to the maps used in canon.
The status quo doesn't allow for these images, and there is no consensus to change that and use them. There isn't even a majority opinion for that, and even if they were allowed, replacing the image already in use would need another consensus, as that would be a purely a stylistic choice.
While I'm on the topic, exactly what part of the purposed change to the policy allows these? If it's the use of the word "material", then I would point out that using "image" there just means our recreations would need to be blurry/too small/at an angle/etc. just like the screen shots, or wouldn't apply to some things like pins (which aren't images on screen), or any of the other ways to bend the intent completely out of the wording, so as to make it useless. You are the people here insisting that some clarification is required, and I haven't seen a single attempt to present one. All I've seen is an attempt to change the policy to allow these images, not clarify that they shouldn't be. If we're looking for a guideline on what should be allowed, what is the problem with the one that's been used over and over again, beyond that these images would be deleted?
We've been at this for more than a month now, and neither of you have used that time to mitigate even most of the points for not allowing these, you just keep beating a dead horse stating that the term "fan-made" in one policy should somehow be sacrosanct, while the clear intent of the entire canon policy as well as specific sections in it aren't even relevant somehow, not to mention all the other policies mentioned.
Do I really need to explain the difference between images and text? Is "an image is worth a thousand words, so we should should hold canon images to a higher standard" enough to make the point, or should we waste more time exploring the very idea behind wikis to drive that point home. MA is text based, because wikis are text based, so unless you want to lock the database from anon editing, or even most editing, we aren't going to be able to control the text to the same extent we do the images. At that point, might as well close this whole thing down and save ourselves the trouble.
By the way Cid, if you could back up why the script graphics shouldn't be used as much as why these images shouldn't be used has been, I would be fine with you saying that, but I know you won't, because breaking them down removes your only "valid" (and I can't stress enough how loosely I'm using that term) complaint about them, and I don't think I would be the only one to expect you to "fix" them first.
And for the most damning part of all this, what image would these completely fan made images link to as their citation, cause I can tell you now they don't even recreate the image currently in use to the same extent that the script graphics do to their sources, so they wouldn't even be allowed under the only thing of any substance that has been suggested while trying to keep these. - Archduk3 07:32, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
You're misrepresenting my point (and to the extent 31dot agrees with me, his point, too) again. It is not my goal "to change the policy to allow these images" - but to fight the very obvious arbitrariness that is being employed here if one "fan-created" (or whatever you want to call it) image is supposed to be deleted, another is supposed to be kept-but-not-used, and a third one can stay in articles without further problems. This arbitrariness reeks of having a somewhat personal component, and I'm sick of having to deal with that (as 31dot requested, to be discussed elsewhere if you want).
Regarding the script graphics, I did already bring up a number of points that make them "less accurate" than anything else, but sure, I can repeat them in more words:
First of all: "It's fan-created". Apparently, that reasoning alone is enough for the quadrants image you want deleted, so why shouldn't it suffice for other images? But I'm going to list more detailed reasons - perhaps you could do the same...
Typically, script or font examples either are the sorted alphabet ("ABC..."), or an example sentence ("The quick brown fox..." - which, btw, uses all letters of the alphabet, too). Is this the case here? I don't know, and I'm asking:
  • Is the collection of characters complete? If not, should we have an image that doesn't make absolutely clear that it is just a script example instead of, potentially, the whole thing?
  • Is the last entity (the "blob with a stick") really a character at all? Or was it meant as just an interface button in the original?
  • Is the order meaningful in any way? For example, would the fifth character in the first row really appear between the surrounding characters?
  • Is character three in row two really a canon character? Can we have a source for that (and for all other characters while we're at it)?
  • The coloring of characters or "words" may be intentional and meaningful - for example, character two in row two appears colored three different ways in this example image: was this coloring really used in canon, and have all those characters been colored that way (and not any other)?
  • According to the graphic, characters may be re-oriented as well and still be meaningful (compare character five and seven in row one). Is this really the case?
That list isn't even complete, I could come up with more - but I'm going to spare us the rest for the moment. Some will say that this is nit-picking already, but I say it isn't more nit-picking than pretending that a simple top-view of a galaxy with two lines and four letters drawn on top of it is totally "non-canon". If that galaxy image needs to be replaced with a screenshot, even if the replacement doesn't show the same amount of detail and from a less-than-optimal angle, then it isn't unreasonable to request that this and other script images be replaced with screenshots as well. -- Cid Highwind 10:19, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

The status quo (for the quadrant images) is for them to remain in the background section, as they were before this started, since 2004- as they are allowed by the current wording of policies(which Sulfur said way back on January 11th) which is why we are here- to discuss altering it to exclude them. While Cid and I have both said we have no particular desire to keep them(and Cid is accused of nefarious motives in doing so)- you have made it clear that nothing short of getting rid of them is acceptable and have even threatened to disrupt the wiki to get your views through. It'd be nice to be met halfway and at least have the possibility of them being allowed, since you are free to argue reasons why the images shouldn't be allowed other than what you've already said.

I've said my piece and won't keep restating it- and I won't have much more to add unless the discussion changes.--31dot 12:32, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

Small correction: the quadrant images have been in the main part of the text for the past 8 years, not just in the background section (see history of Template:quadrants image map and how its placement in Alpha Quadrant hasn't changed recently). Other than that, correct again. -- Cid Highwind 12:40, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

Thank you. I would be content with them remaining, temporarily or permanently, in the Background section, if we want to reinforce the idea that these quadrant images are not direct lifts from canon.--31dot 12:45, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

Sure. I've expressed more than once that I don't think of background sections as some parking place for "B-quality information", so I wouldn't mind images being restricted to that section, if done for the proper reasons. That, too, should just be done consistently as well, so if the quadrant images get restricted to background, a hypothetical future problem-free variant of the script images (which are still uncited, of poor image quality, etc.) should be restricted to background as well. We then just need to discuss what "accuracy" an image needs to have to be more than that, so that we can decide whether individual organization logos should be placed in in-universe or background sections. In that case, I believe that a "proof image" on the image description page still would be the proper way to go. -- Cid Highwind 13:41, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
"Small correction"? The location of these images has been the whole point from post one! Sulfur's opinion is his own, but the wording of one policy suggesting these can be used does not trump the intent of several other policies, one of which simply didn't use this exact example when stating these shouldn't be, and even sulfur seemed to agree with that by stating the image policy probably wasn't correct. Read my posts again 31dot, since you seem to have missed the entire point, they are full of reasons why these shouldn't be used, and so are Pseudo's. I still haven't heard replies to even half of the rational for not using these at all, so I don't feel the need to keep pointing them out, since they just seems to bonce off the eyes of anyone who doesn't want to address it. I will feel free to keep adding to why these shouldn't be used though, and ask Cid to explain in detail why this should be deleted while this shouldn't be without mentioning the quality, which was the whole little exercise with the "examples" above. All I see are two non-canon images, modified in some manner to highlight a section of them, and then intended to replace a perfectly fine canon image. Both are accurate enough if the image only has to be based on the text, not what was seen, and if anything, my example is the better one, as its base non-canon image has more to do with Trek than Cid's does. Truth be told, I just want to see what policy wording would possibly allow his and not mine, since the mental gymnastics required for that should be interesting if nothing else. - Archduk3 16:21, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
If you feel it necessary to present the image of a bussard collector with a circle around it, be my guest. I've just changed your image to remove the most severe quality issues, and just ask that you rename it as well as properly update its description page (I've added the important details to my upload summary). I will leave it for others to decide whether a circle around the bussard collector really is necessary - but obviously, that's not even the real point here. -- Cid Highwind 16:41, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

(edit conflict)Yes, you probably could upload an image like your hastily created one per the current policy- if I've said otherwise I did not intend to give that impression- but it wouldn't last five seconds in an article going by all other rationales we use to evaluate images. If you wish to argue that there are more suitable images, or better quality ones, or what have you, you have been and are free to do so- it is no different than how we handle poorly written text. Your first reason on the IfD page, though, was simply that they were "non-canon fan made images"(though I am aware you have mentioned other reasons elsewhere). If there are other reasons to delete it, then this whole discussion has been an unnecessary academic exercise. --31dot 16:54, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

Avoiding the issue there Cid, again, as you yourself noted. What wording would you suggest to allow yours and not mine? I suggested modifying canon images slightly to highlight sections if necessary, and you pointed out problems with that. I can't even begin to fathom how you think yours somehow don't have the same problems, and somehow aren't even worse off for not at least starting with a canon image.
Right on the nose 31dot, this has all been "an unnecessary academic exercise", since the only change that need to be made was to use a different term other than "fan-made" in one policy. I still don't see any pressing need to clarify beyond that, but Cid isn't going to stop until these images are allowed, since even though his "words" may state otherwise, his actions remain true to that intent, up to and including the refusal to get the point, or even support his own. - Archduk3 17:13, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
That's a strawman argument, because your image does not have any issues besides its very, very poor quality - that's what I already told you the first time you brought it up. It took me less than five minutes to locate a properly useable high quality image of a bussard collector, crop it and draw a proper, high(er) quality circle around it. So, perhaps you could answer a question for a change: do you think my version of your image could be used in articles - if not, why not - and if, why don't you do me and all of us a favor and be constructive about what needs to be changed in the quadrants image to be useable as well? -- Cid Highwind 17:22, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
Actually, the point was that using an image of a toy in someone's room in the canon sections of articles should raise an automatic red flag, and that there is no difference with that and using your images. Even in the bg section there are problem with that, if not insurmountable ones. That's why there isn't anything to change with yours if you want to use it in canon, and outright replacing it would be better for the bg sections. Things that could be done for the overall situation would be to take the current canon image and rotate it 90 degrees so the Alpha quadrant is where Cid insists it must be, even though there isn't any good reason to do that. You could make an effort to recreate that image, so as to "fix" the angle/alignment/sharpness, but it would need to be far more accurate than throwing together an image from NASA with some lines on it and four Greek letters. You could even use any of the the "official" maps here (translated from the original German) in the background section of the article to supplement the canon image, and five MA points if you recognize the first image on that page. I've said nothing new here, except providing a link, so maybe you would like to start addressing any of the other points for why these maps should be deleted now, and why we shouldn't allow images that aren't recreations? I still haven't heard why my purposed text wouldn't solve the problem, since no one has explained how it allows these fan-made maps. Is it maybe time to start actually purposing changes to the policy instead of talking in circles about about if/how/why we should. All we need Cid is roughly two sentences to put on the page, is that too much to ask after all this time? - Archduk3 18:01, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
This is still not solely about the quadrants images, but about their "accuracy" in comparison to the "accuracy" of other images that you want to allow. So, I'm going to upload new versions of the Gamma and Delta quadrant images right now, to appear in the gallery below. Gamma uses a transformed version of this canon image but is otherwise unaltered, while Delta also tries to more closely mimic the design of the quadrant borders on the other canon image. According to your last comment, both should probably be allowed, right?
But, again, this is not simply about getting the quadrants images "top-notch", but also about the amount of work apparently necessary for them but not for other images. As you've requested, I've listed several problems of the script graphic earlier today - perhaps we can talk about them, and how those are potentially not totally accurate recreations either, for a change. -- Cid Highwind 18:56, February 20, 2012 (UTC)
Images removed.
Both of those new images still leave much to be desired, but are now in or closer to the "PNA range" of problems as it were, depending on use. Gamma is still more problematic than Delta, since it isn't trying to recreate a labeled image accurately, but is using a similar image now labeled based on the other. If allowed, and using image citations, both images would need to be cited. Delta is lacking the same quality as the source image, and the quadrants aren't labeled with text, but a PNA message could be created for that, with some loose and generally non-specific guideline about the level of accuracy in the we strive for in recreations, as already mentioned above. I know Delta isn't a "true" recreation either, since it's just that canon image cropped and labeled instead of recreated, but that's still different than drawing a circle over a bussard collector to highlight it in canon (and we do use circles in images to point out things in the background of articles), or just placing a gird and letters over a real world image, since it's at least attempting to recreate the canon image. The highlighting part should be able to stand on it's own merits, or not.
As for "script graphics", I've already said breaking them down to "one image, one graphic" versions would solve most of the problems you've mentioned (categories can easily be created for them), and coloring is generally subjective (as proven by different colors being used for most non-"one use" logos and script), though a note could be added to the article/file about that issue, like the aforementioned PNA message. After all, File:Klingon Empire logo.png isn't even close color wise to most versions use on screen, but the overall shape is correct enough. I even cited that image with another image long before this came up, and that cite isn't even the most used color combination, as the old TOS colors were used in DS9 episodes. Once breaking them down is done, each one would need to be able justify its inclusion as "script" instead of just "button" or something else. I still don't think they need to be broken down to be labeled as examples with a random order (or not is some cases), but I still think that would be a neat and interesting way to do this. - Archduk3 19:40, February 20, 2012 (UTC)

redux III Edit

Surprise, surprise. Nothing has been agreed upon after over two months of pointless intellectual exercising in which very few actual suggestions to change the policy were made. So to cut through that crap and get something done, here's some changes that could have been made yesterday:

  1. The text "Images used in canon sections of articles should either be directly from a canon source, or a recreation of material seen in one. Recreations should strive for complete accuracy of the source material." will be added to the basic overview. A version of this text will also be added to the "valid resources" section of the canon policy. Text will be introduced in both locations as well to stress not breaking POV if clearer images of material are used.
  2. The terms "fan-created work", "fan-created images", and "fan images" will be removed and replaced with "reproduction" (for fan-created work specifically) or "copyrighted images" (for fan-created images specifically). The last paragraph in the copyrights section will be almost entirely rewritten to cover images other than canon ones, and to change "original scenes inspired by the shows" to "tributes and parodies" specifically.
  3. The canon policy text for invalid resources will be changed to: "Blueprints, specifications, or diagrams not seen in a valid resource (including such items as Ships of the Star Fleet)

This is a straight up and down vote more or less. You either agree with these, with or without some minor adjustments, or you do not. The full text of all the policies can be presented before hand if necessary as temps, but calling for that will be considered agreeing with the intent of the changes as outlined. Counter proposals must included the changes that would actually be made, in so far as these changes have been outlined. It's as simple as that, and always has been. - Archduk3 14:50, March 31, 2012 (UTC)

I have to be quick, but I maintain that it is reasonable and proper to do what most other encyclopedias do and allow good quality user-made (or fan-made) illustrations of canon when necessary to assist readers, but I am willing to set that aside for now. I've said already that I can support something fairly close to your first suggestion(we were sort of discussing that above in the first redux section) though I might add "and if necessary" after "a recreation of material seen in one". I don't know if I fully understand the need for your other suggestions but they seem OK. --31dot 15:25, March 31, 2012 (UTC)

User generated reproductions and other such things Edit

"Fan made" should be defined differently than "user generated", since the latter should be considered a "reproduction" of canon material while the former is merely "based on" canon material. In the case of a reproduction, the user didn't "create" or "make" anything, they simply copied what was already there. I'm fine with these reproductions having a link to a screenshot on the file description page, I've been doing that for awhile already, but we shouldn't delete every one that doesn't have one, nor should they be required. Not everything seen on screen is going to have a clear enough screenshot to be worth it, and if the reproduction is based on a clearer image from a bg source, adding a screenshot is going to create confusion, not clear it up. It's not a good idea to be uploading the amount of material from the reference books and what not that we would need to to cover the ones that are based on clearer bg info either, so requiring anything more than a cite is going to be problematic.

I do still think that we should allow for the "minor modification" of canon images on a case by case basis, or allowing them to stand on it's own merit. We already make minor modifications to images in this way by creating collages and selective cropping things out of images (sometimes both in the same image), as well as resizing images and changing the brightness (either intentionally or because of differing screen capture programs). Either way, there are changes that need to be made both here and at the canon policy, since the latter does cover this. - Archduk3 17:31, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

I strongly disagree with "not requiring" a link to a source image. It would be a far better form of citation than just adding an episode link and letting the user who wants to check the veracity of something "user generated" scan through tons of images on or, worse, make him fast forward through the episode itself. Requiring a "citation screen shot" doesn't cost us anything, or at least much less than we get in return in form of easier access to that source.
Also, please let us know up-front what you think about images such as File:Tos radm.png (extrapolated rank insignia not seen on the show), File:Bajoran script.gif (script collections that may or may not be complete, be compiled from a huge variety of resources, be colored in a way that doesn't match the original) or File:Breen Confederacy logo.png (where it is totally unclear, without a proper source image, to find out how accurate the reproduction really is). -- Cid Highwind 18:05, January 14, 2012 (UTC)
[Moved from the redux section above]
Unseen ranks must be from some bg-source, otherwise they're just fan speculation. User-made image of a symbol should have the image it is based on as a link in the page or the discussion page, or something, so that others can evaluate the accuracy. Those quadrant images are bad i think mainly because they use a real world image of the galaxy that isn't used anywhere in star trek. and i think this File:Milky Way Galaxy Quadrants.jpg shows for example perfectly well where and what the quadrants are in the way they are usually depicted. I don't think its even necessary to have that type of weird picture navigation between the quadrant pages anyways. I don't have a clear explanation on why i want the line to be drawn to symbols only, it just feels like they are somewhat ok and all the rest is not. i would just like ma to be as free from all the fanmade graphics crap as possible. every other star trek site in the internet is filled with it already. This site is the only place where i would like to see only what is actually truly official/canonical. --Pseudohuman 18:49, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

[Edit conflict] - All reproductions shouldn't require an image link, for the reasons I've stated, but one can be strongly suggested if there isn't any bg source involved, or the bg source would need to be cited as well. Coloring is a poor reason to delete an image in all cases, and should be applied on a case by case basis. Just see any LCARS display for how much the color can differ, not to mention the Federation logo. Script images shouldn't have a background, and as I've already said, are fine if they are considered "examples", where order and completeness are not required. They are helpful, and if based on info see on screen, I don't see an issue with them being in the canon section of articles. Implied rank images are fine with me in the context they are used now, since most are based on bg or apocrypha sources (that I know of) and images supporting text outside of the canon section of articles should and does have a wider latitude. We're allowing the text about the missing ranks, and in some cases the image is directly supporting that text, not standing alone. Talking about ranks seen in books, comics, and games can have a supporting image as far as I know, so again, case by case would be best.

(Note: I've moved Pseudohuman's reply down to this section since it has more to do with the discussion going on here, since this is the continuation in a productive direction.) - Archduk3 19:27, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

I think an image link should be preferred, but even if there is no such link the rationale/citation for the image should be given.--31dot 21:30, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

What I meant before was that the cite/ref should contain some information in lieu of an image link, if an image link isn't the best option. Right now I think most of them are only cited to episodes, so any bg info should be added eventually, but the word "required" isn't compatible with this unless someone is going to make all the change right after that fact. Cid's already suggested that any without an image link should be deleted, and that's simply counterproductive. - Archduk3 22:25, January 14, 2012 (UTC)

You could make it that it is "preferable" to have an image link, in the sense used on MA:CYS that it is "preferable" for book citations have a page number. i.e. Make sure you add it to new additions, update old ones where possible, but don't delete just because this requirement isn't met.–Cleanse ( talk | contribs ) 23:19, January 14, 2012 (UTC)
Misrepresenting my position as if I was out to go on an immediate deletion spree throughout our image database once that gets decided isn't really helpful. What I actually had in mind was a possibility to really request such source image without just getting the short end of a stick in form of a statement like "read our policy, such image is not required". Basically, something similar to {{pna-cite}} to be used on self-created images that just lazily state "there's a single frame somewhere in these 42 minutes of video where this information might be gleaned from" (if they even state as much), and an eventual deletion if that information isn't properly added after quite a while. I don't think that this is in any shape or form more "counterproductive" than any other pna template we currently use. -- Cid Highwind 00:23, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

How are you going to compel anyone to deal with a number of pna tags like the ones that no one here deals with, according to you? Also, if you're suggesting that everyone who went through the trouble to upload an image in accordance with our policies is now "lazy" because that policy changed, then you must be volunteering to be the one to make sure all these images get tagged with your pna message and then checked for accuracy before they're suggested for deletion. Anything less would be rather "lazy" of you, don't you think? - Archduk3 00:46, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

I'm not sure what that has to do with anything, again. No one dealt with the huge number of pna-cite and incite for quite a while before I started digging through at least the "very old" ones last week (which actually started this and which, if I didn't have to take part in this 5-page discussion debacle, I would have continued by now), so are you suggesting that we drop caring for proper citation in our articles now? Some pages have been marked as incomplete for a good time, so do you suggest that we no longer care for that as well? Some images have been tagged as needing-cleanup years ago, so should we just drop any quality considerations and allow low-quality screenshots to be uploaded? No, of course not, none of that is what you're trying to stand in for, here - for some reason, you only care about some potential inactivity by individuals that might happen if we start caring for better material (=properly sourced self-created images) in other regards. That argument just doesn't make much sense... -- Cid Highwind 11:38, January 15, 2012 (UTC)
Somewhat tangential discussion, but its a bit hurtful when you say no one was dealing with the "pna-cites" before you came along. I've been keeping an eye on them for well over a year now, removing a handful of the 2+ year incites every couple of days, making sure the problem didn't get any worse. New uncited info is added often. Its hard of course being only one person, and this being a volunteer run site. Other users have also contributed to this effort now and then, and I think their contributions shouldn't be so readily ignored by a blanket statement. –Cleanse ( talk | contribs ) 11:53, January 15, 2012 (UTC)
Cleanse: Sorry about that, wasn't meant to be hurtful. The on-topic point still stands, though, and even is supported by what you state: Contributors are working on the problematic parts of this site, even if that sometimes is not too visible to others (again, sorry!) - so "inactivity" shouldn't be given as a reason for not tagging further problems. -- Cid Highwind 12:07, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

That's not what I'm suggesting at all Cid, and you know it. I'm suggesting that tagging an image, not trying to fix it, and then deleting it isn't trying to solve the problem, it's just deleting the image. Removed cites are placed on the talk page where they can be seen by everyone and still worked on. Deleted images are just gone as far as anyone who isn't an admin is concerned. Unless you're planing on working directly on the problem, you shouldn't place any image up for deletion because the policy shouldn't be worded so images can be deleted solely on the grounds that the "preferable" information isn't there. Also, don't flippantly insult every user who has ever contributed to this site in a certain manner, even if their contributions now don't live up to your exacting, and apparently ever changing, standards. - Archduk3 13:56, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

Good, then let us deal with these images like with all other stuff that is lacking a proper citation. We will remove them from articles after some time, and instead add them to talk pages and/or a central gallery for problem images somewhere (to be discussed). We will not allow them to be returned to articles unless they finally get that lacking citation. Do you also have a problem with that? -- Cid Highwind 14:34, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

I'm fine with moving them out of articles. Whatever pna template that is created, or modified, for this can also have an option to sort them based on which ones aren't being used, so the ones still in articles can be sorted to the top of a list or something. - Archduk3 23:11, January 15, 2012 (UTC)

{{pna-cite}} already is used on several images, and that use should be continued for images that are completely lacking any citation. A new {{pna-imageusercreated}} should be used for images that are lacking a "source image or other very detailed rationale in case of user-created images" as discussed above. A third template, {{pna-image-donotuse}} should act as an additional warning sign (meaning that whatever pna message is used stays on the page), and can be used to also add the image to some or another category for not-to-be-used images and thus sorting purposes. I ask everyone else involved to comment on this solution. Other than that, if this is then considered settled, it would be great if we returned to the other open questions to which this was only a tangent. -- Cid Highwind 11:40, January 16, 2012 (UTC)
Example: File:Borg alphanumeric code.gif (also note that image has been removed from Borg language and moved to the talk page there). -- Cid Highwind 12:43, January 16, 2012 (UTC)
Points to iron out:
  • Template names: we have a licensing template called {{image art reproduction}} that I just re-discovered, so I suggest we use that term here as well instead of using an additional, new one like "user created image". Also, the "do not use" template could get a simpler and more descriptive name like {{DO NOT USE}}.
  • Naming of a category to hold "not to be used" images. Probably something like Category:Memory Alpha images (not to be used).
-- Cid Highwind 13:18, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

Under this system, image citations should be dedicated images, so they aren't likely to be changed for another reason, so we need a category for them, like Category:Memory Alpha images (image citations). "Do not use" sounds counter intuitive (why would we have images that shouldn't be used?), actually describing what needs to be done as the title sounds much better, like "{{pna-cite before use}}", with the category called Category:Memory Alpha images (citation required). "Pna-imageusercreated" sounds like all user generated images need a pna, and has spacing issues, so "{{pna-uncited reproduction}}" is what I would use. We also shouldn't retroactively apply this "policy" to images and remove them from articles before they are tagged and so on, though I'm fine with the example. - Archduk3 14:19, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

I'm not sure what you mean by "retroactively applying this to images before they are tagged", so please clarify. For what it's worth (if you mean what I guess you might mean): I plan to handle other images like the example after this has been settled - meaning I want to remove them from articles if they already are tagged pna-cite for a whole lot of time. I don't see any purpose in artificially dragging that out by first having to replace one pna message with a slightly more specialized other - because, let's face it, if people haven't actually fixed a problem in several years, and if the original "image author" isn't even active anymore, it will just be the same after that artificial waiting period is over. Of course, I will directly tag new images with the new pna message, if it applies. -- Cid Highwind 17:30, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

Images lacking any citation can and should be removed if it's been awhile, like the example image was (though it doesn't still have the {{Pna-cite}} tag on it like you suggested, unless that isn't what you were suggesting). Images without any citation problem now shouldn't be removed before being tagged. - Archduk3 17:44, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

No, not exactly what I suggested. The example no longer has pna-cite, because that was replaced by the new pna, which I see as sort of a specialization of pna-cite. After all, if a source image will have been added, that should resolve any "standard" pna-cite concerns as well. Other images that are not "user created reproductions" would of course keep their current pna-cite in case of removal, and new "removal candidates" would of course be tagged with either pna message in advance of them being removed. -- Cid Highwind 17:51, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

OK so far. The wording of the messages themselves should be looked into later, when presumably there would be some better place to link to that will reduce the amount of small white text needed in a red box. - Archduk3 19:21, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

I like what's been mentioned about the templates.--31dot 21:18, January 16, 2012 (UTC)

Split Edit

As part of the generalizing of the types of files we have, the portions of this policy that apply to all files (file names, etc.) should be split off to a "File use policy", of which the Image use policy would be a part of by dealing with the image specific rules and guidelines (image resolution, etc.). - Archduk3 23:45, September 14, 2013 (UTC)

Image format guidelines/policies Edit

Currently, the Memory Alpha:Image use policy states under point 2:

Use the correct format:

  • JPG - for photographic images, such as screen captures.
  • SVG (preferred) or PNG (if no svg is available) - for diagrams and other low-contrast images.

I know I'm new here, but I have 7+ years of image-heavy editing experience on other wiki's. It is a fact that screenshots in PNG format are vastly superior in quality than JPG format images, particularly when hey are compressed into thumbnails, and lower-resolution preview images on the file pages themselves. JPG images become plagued with JPG artifacts, which is something that PNG screenshots do not suffer. I would highly recommend adjusting it to say JPG or PNG for photographic images such as screen captures. - JMAS SPEAK 07:36, March 3, 2014 (UTC)

I agree, and considering this has been here for years unchallenged, I'm updating the policy. - Archduk3 03:26, January 5, 2018 (UTC)
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