This page is considered an official policy on Wikimedia Commons.
It has wide acceptance among editors and is considered a standard that everyone must follow. Except for minor edits (such as fixing typos, or bringing information up to date), please make use of the discussion page to propose changes to this policy.
Related policies and guidelines
- Commons:Project scope: the aim of Wikimedia Commons is to provide media realistically useful for an educational purpose
- Commons is not censored: a depiction of human nudity is not in itself a reason for deletion
- Commons:What Commons is not#Wikimedia Commons is not your personal free web host: Commons is not your personal free web host
- Commons:What Commons is not#Wikimedia Commons is not an amateur porn site: Commons is not an amateur porn site
- Commons:Photographs of identifiable people: a subject's consent is needed for identifiable photographs taken in a private place
- Template:2257 — tracking template which categorizes files (and warns content reusers) of content which may fall under 18 USC 2257
Images depicting male nudity are regularly nominated for deletion at Commons:Deletion requests and the Commons is not censored policy is often cited as a defense. However it must be asked if allowing any content whatsoever (within the bounds of the law) is really serving the Wikimedia projects' aims. This guideline aims to define a reasonable bound for administrators and other users; to serve as a guide in deciding what should be kept and what may be deleted.
- Any image that appears to be uploaded solely for the purpose of vandalism may be speedily deleted. Typically the uploader will be a new user with a low edit count and other users from local projects will come to Commons to request the image's deletion.
- Any image can be used to vandalize pages, although ones with nudity have more shock value. Images should not be deleted simply because they are being used for vandalism, only when they fail to meet established policy or guidelines.
New files of low resolution or poor quality which provide little descriptive information of a subject we already have files of may be nominated for deletion citing appropriate rationale(s). Such files are of limited value as media for categories related to human anatomy and stages of development.
An image or video of decent quality which does provide additional useful information, e.g. about the background and age of the individual or relevant vital statistics, might indeed be useful. Likewise, a file that is sufficiently different from existing files should generally be kept. A new file of decent quality may mean that a similar poor image or video can be deleted.
Significantly different from existing files
If a file depicts some phenomenon or circumstance which we do not already have representations of (for example, diseases or body modifications) then it should be kept, as it adds to the educational content of Commons. Wikimedia Commons should have media depicting human anatomy in all its variety and diversity.
Media better than existing files
If a new image or video depicts something we already have, but in a better way, the older file may be considered for deletion.
- Prefer higher resolution files over lower resolution files
- Prefer focused media over unfocused and blurry files
- Prefer images showing context (for example, the full male body) over media only showing a "groin shot"
- Prefer non-confrontational framing (e.g. side-on) over "shocking" close-up shots (such files are more likely to be used in vandalism attacks for this reason)
These preferences should help Commons build a higher quality database that adheres more closely to its educational aims.