Photo Use

I endeavor to follow all laws, rules, and regulations regarding the posting of photos. For the most part, copyright does not apply to most WWII photos. I will make every attempt to provide attribution for all other photos. If you believe I have posted a photo in violation of your copyright, please let me know and I will immediately remove the photo from this website.

I find that I use four broad categories of photos: a) WWII photos, generally in black and white; b) color plates from books; c) contemporary photos from other websites; and d) my own photos. Here’s a brief discussion of each.

A. WWII Photos:  Copyright Not Applicable

Copyright not applicable. Most WWII photos come from various government sources, whether it is the U.S. National Archives, the UK National Archives, the Bundesarchiv, or others. Government documents, pamphlets, photos, film clips, etc. are exempt from the copyright laws and are therefore in the public domain. This applies to the USG as well as most other governments. There are, to be sure, many photos that were not taken by government employees but even those have usually been published repeatedly and have fallen into the public domain. Thus, whether you find them in a book or on the internet, wartime photos are, generally, in the public domain.

B. Color Plates From Books:  Copyrighted but Fair Use Exception Applies

Copyright applies but “Fair Use” exception permits usage. Although color plates are copyrighted and permission to use them is required, there is an exception for “Fair Use,” in which case permission from the author is NOT required to use them.

Important “Fair Use” Factors:

  • Purpose and Character:  Nonprofit/educational use is more likely to be found fair instead of commercial use. Clearly, photos are not posted here for profit or for any commercial purposes. I post specifically to exchange educational information with other collectors about the miniatures we love.
  • Nature of the Copyrighted Work:  Fair use is more likely to apply when the photo is published instead of unpublished since photographers have the right to control the first public appearance of their work. All color plates posted here have been published and the artists have already exercised full control over where their work was first published.
  • Amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole. Fair use is more likely when only a small amount or insubstantial portion of the photo is used. The color plates posted here make up an insignificant percentage of the book from which they were taken.
  • Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. Fair use is probably not applicable when the photo directly affects and competes with the market of the photographer. This is not the case with any photo posted on this website.

C. Contemporary Photos From Internet:  Creative Commons May Allow Usage

Copyright applies but “Creative Commons” license may allow usage. A photographer can release a photo under a Creative Commons license, meaning that the author provides permission to use his photos. The Sherman Minutia Website, for example, has the following phrase: “All pictures are free for non-commercial use.”

D. My Own Photos:  Free for Non-Commercial Use

I strongly believe in sharing information, including photos. Please feel free to use my photos as long as 1) it is not for commercial use, and 2) you provide attribution.

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