Creating missing Wikipedia articles for iNat's Observations of the Week

Thanks to Hyperik on wikipedia for doing this one already!


Which license you recommend?


I’ve chosen to license my works with CC-BY-SA.

However, others have argued that it is better to use an even more permissive license, such as CC-BY. I have released some works under this license on other sites, such as my YouTube videos, and I’ve been seriously considering changing the licenses on my iNaturalist uploads to this one.

Both CC-BY-SA and CC-BY, as well as CC0 (public domain) are compatible with use on Wikipedia.

All three do allow commercial use of the work, which some people see as a downside (i.e. if they don’t like the idea of someone else making money off the work.) Personally though, I see this as an upside. The fact that the work is freely available and must be cited and attributed to the author, limits the amount of money people can make off it (no one is going to pay much for a freely available work), so if someone is making money, they are probably adding their own value and mainly making money primarily from that added value. With CC-BY-SA, there is a requirement that their derivative works also be available for free. And, both licenses require citation, so they’re also helping me (and iNaturalist) gain visibility through citing the source of the work. And to me, the idea of generating additional economic activity is appealin to me; it’s like, I’m stimulating the economy!

CC0 is best if you want the widest possible distribution of the work itself, but don’t care about citation. It might encourage casual use but you’d be more likely to get someone profitting off it without citing you, like posting the image on their social media accounts without crediting you, etc.


I’ll just pop in to say my images are licensed CC0 because I want them to be used as widely as possible and I want people to not be nervous about using those images for any purpose. I like CC-BY-SA in theory, but I think it scares off educators, non-profits, individuals who are unfamiliar with CC licenses and wouldn’t be violating CC-BY-SA but are still hesitant. My pictures also aren’t that great and I’d be surprised if anyone could use them to profit (but good on them to try!). I tend to release my scientific datasets and articles as CC-BY and my curricula CC-BY-SA, so it does somewhat depend on my own valuation of my work and who I want to use it and how.