SourceWatch:Uploading Images & PDFs

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Yes, you can upload images and scanned documents into SourceWatch.


Here are the general guidelines:

Images. Please upload only copyright free images. See for more information or the guide to finding public domain images. It is best to use JPEG files (with the *.jpg suffix) wherever possible or PNG files (with the *.png suffix). Do not use Windows BMP format images; they are uncompressed and take up too much space. As far as possible please keep the images you upload to a file size of less than 100kb. (Note: If you are uploading an Acrobat file the maximum file size is 4 megabytes). The smaller the better. Remember that there are many web users on slower connections and we don't want to deter them from accessing SourceWatch because of slow-loading pages due to uncompressed images.

Adobe Acrobat files (PDFs). A general rule of thumb is that if the document already exists in a location where it is likely to remain, it it better to link to it than upload it. The important issue is that it can be accessed somewhere by readers if it is necessary for verification of important points. If, however, you have unique material - such as a document obtained under a Freedom of Information Act request - that is especially relevant you can upload it to SourceWatch and link to it in the article you are editing.

How to Upload an Image or PDF

  1. In the bottom left hand column under the "Toolbox" heading is the "Upload file" link. Click on this.
  2. This will take you to
  3. Before uploading an image or a PDF there are a couple of points to check. If you think an image is copyright free, such as from a company's own or government website, check in the File Info section for any notes on copyright. For Adobe Acrobat files, it is worth checking to see if the security settings on the file are set to standard so that the document can be printed and copied but not modified. (This may help avoid arguments over the document content later).
  4. In the file name bar find the file on your hard drive. Click on it.
  5. In the "Summary" space add a brief explanatory note on the origin of the image or document. For example, if the photo is from a government website, post the url into your note. If it is a document, a brief explanation on where it came from is worthwhile.
  6. After you are sure the image or pdf is copyright free, check the box to the statement "I affirm that the copyright holder of this file agrees to license it under the terms of the SourceWatch copyright." If you don't check this box, you won't be allowed to upload the file.
  7. Click on "Upload file"
  8. If your file is under the 100k threshold and the name doesn't clash with an existing file, it will be uploaded and the link to it appear on the "Recent Changes" page:
  9. If your file is over 4 megabytes or uses an existing file name, after a little while you will be prompted (the duration depends on the original file size) whether you want to upload anyway. The options you will have are: "Save File" - "Ignore warning and save file anyway" or "Re-Upload" - "Return to the upload form." Choose one.

How to add an image to fill a blank image link in an article page

  1. If you find an article with a blank image space, click the edit tab and find the red link (indicating a blank image link) on the page at the spot where the image will go (here's an example: "Image:Gregwarren.jpg"). Make a note of the exact name of the image file (in this case, Gregwarren.jpg).
  2. Find an image that you wish to eventually upload onto the site and save it to your computer. Be sure to give the image the same name as that of the red link. This is important.
  3. Go back to the article where you wish to add the image.
  4. Click the red link. This will take you to the "Upload file" page. Click browse and locate the image file that you saved to the computer.
  5. Write a brief summary in the "Summary" box describing your actions.
  6. Click "Upload file."
  7. The image should now appear on the page where the red link previously did.

How to use the extended image syntax

Click here to learn more about using the extended image syntax.

Related SourceWatch resources