Freedom of the Media

Freedom of the media means that the web stays in the hands of the people. This page explains the value of free media and the tools that make it accessible.

Explore Project Methods
A photo of Jupiter's moon Europa. Only half of the moon is visible. The moon is streaked with red lines on a blue surface. The background is completely black.

Free Media

The value of free media & the world it resides in.
Close up photo of a tree branch with ice on it with a light blue gradient of the sky in the background.


The Wikimedia Foundation & its branches.
Two scuba divers swimming through light blue waters.

Wikimedia Commons

Dive into the realm of Wikimedia Commons.
Five horses of various sizes standing in a field with a blue sky in the horizon.

Creative Commons

Understanding open licensing and its various symbols.

Free Media

Free media or freedom of the media allows for the open exchange of media without censorship. Some of the most popular free media platforms include Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, & X (previously Twitter). However, it is important to question whether these platforms are truly free. These for-profit companies often have a political agenda even if it is not apparent. They can use their algorithm to dictate what kind of media is being promoted on the platform and what is being hidden.

In many cases this means political media is restricted, propaganda is prevalent, biased news is all too common, and thousands of voices go unheard. It is vital that free media is protected and advocated for to promote a  balance of power, accountability, and freedom of speech internationally. It is called the world wide web after all.

1 - No Censorship 11 - Strict Censorship
Data Source: Comparitech

Map Of Censorship Severity

Resources like Wikimedia means that people have access to media, data, and discoveries that they would have otherwise never been exposed to.  Despite efforts from organizations like Wikimedia, media censorship is still a global issue.

Disclaimer: Wikimedia logos are a trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation and is used with the permission of the Wikimedia Foundation. We are not endorsed by or affiliated with the Wikimedia Foundation. All content is purely for educational purposes in line with the Wikimedia Foundation's mission of defending free expression.

Wikimedia Foundation logo depicting a circle outline encompassing two semi circle with a dot above them. Wikimedia Foundation title is below the logo.

"We help everyone share in the sum of all knowledge." -Wikimedia Foundation

What is Wikimedia?

The Wikimedia Foundation or Wikimedia for short is a non-profit organization that hosts 14 of the largest free knowledge projects in the world. Many of these projects are user-based and allow anyone to contribute their knowledge. They connect millions of people around the world with access to media, data, news, language, and more.

Note that Wikimedia is not affiliated with Wikileaks.

Wikimedia LogoWikimedia Foundation logo depicting a circle outline encompassing two semi circle with a dot above them. Featuring green, red, and blue colors.
Wikidata logo depicting a barcode with red, green, and blue stripes.
Free knowledge database.
Wikipedia logo depicting puzzle pieces in the shape of a globe in grayscale. On each piece their is a letter from a different alphabet, many of which represent the letter W in different languages.
Free encyclopedia.
Wikimedia Commons logo depciting a blue arrow in a circular shape with seven smaller arrow branching of it towards the center pointing to a central red dot.
Wikimedia Commons
Free media database.
Wiktionary logo depicting beige tiles with blue letters on them from various alphabets, one tile displays a red W.
Free multlilingual dictionary.
Wikisource logo depicting a graphic of the small tip of an iceberg above water with the enormous rest of the iceberg under the water.
Historical document database.
Meta-Wiki title in blue text.
Wikimedia's organizational & planning hub.
Wikivoyage logo depicting three triangles, one blue, one green, one red with curved bases oriented in different directions to form a circle.
Free travel guide.
Wikiqoute logo depicting a blue circle with a gradient of light blue curves deflecting from it, reminiscent to an audio symbol.
Notable qoute database.
MediaWiki logo depicting a graphic representation of a flower with petals in a yellow to purple gradient.
Free software that powers Wikimedia projects.
Wikispecies logo depicting a graphic 3D representation of a blue and green helix with a red ball at the top. There is a blue semicircle encompassing the helix.
Free taxonomy dictionary.
Wikibooks logo depicting three beige sheets of paper with a blue outline layered front front to back, each paper gets gradually lighter as it reaches the back.
Free textbooks.
Wikinews logo featuring a light blue world map with a gradient of rays deflecting from theleft and right.
fact-checked commercial news.
Wikiversity logo depicting a blue structure, presumably a university, with four columns at the base and a globe like dome at the top.
Free education course material.
Wikifunctions logo depicting a green lambda overlaying a blue W . There is a blue semi circle encompassing the bottom half of with a red semi circle encompassing the top.
Free functions & programming database.

To keep these projects running and remain a neutral point of view platform, users share unified missions in their contributions.


According to the Wikimedia Foundation

  • Defending free expression
  • Advancing better internet regulations
  • Promoting open copyright licenses
  • Upholding human rights
  • Protecting Privacy
  • Fighting disinformation

While Wikimedia Commons features media from all parts of the world including Antarctica, most visits on the site happen in the United States with 25,000,000 visits.  

Countries With the Most Visits on Wikimedia Commons

From November 2022 to November 2023
This data does not include visitors who were not users.

After learning about the massive span of Wikimedia Commons, many users are eager to share their favorite media that they've found on the platform. Others are more excited to contribute their own works to the project. Either way, users will need to develop an understanding of media licensing before they can share or contribute media.

Creative Commons

Creative Commons is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to promoting an understanding of open access literature and media. CC licensing provides free access to creative works that would otherwise be copyrighted. There are a variety of open licenses that media can be released under from works that still require attribution to works that are free to use for any purpose. All works made in 1927 and before are automatically in the public domain. To get a further idea of the complex nature of media licensing, it is encouraged that you visit the Creative Commons site.

Disclaimer: While a brief overview of each license is provided, this information is not intended to cover all factors of copyright licensing as there are many complex aspects. This information was collected as part of an educational project. No information on this page acts as legal advice nor does it establish a lawyer client relationship. Seek professional advising for appropriate guidance.

to Know
When Giving
Proper Attribution

Attribution BY black logo depicting a graphic silhouette of a person encompassed by a circle.
Attribution - BY

Works that you can copy, distribute, display, perform, and make derivative works & remixes. You must give proper attribution to the work's creator and provide a link to the BY license.

 Share-Alike SA logo depicting a black graphic of circular arrow encompassed by a circle.
Share-Alike - SA

You must release derivative works under the same license the the original content was released under.

Non Commercial NC black logo depicting a dollar sign with a slash through it encompassed by a circle.
Non-Commercial - NC

You may copy, distribute, display, perform the work and make derivative works and remixes based on it for non-commercial purposes. purposes.

No Derivative Works ND black logo depicting an equals symbol encompassed by a circle.
No Derivative Works - ND

You may copy, distribute, display and perform only copies of the work. You may not transform, remix or adapt the work.

Public Domain CC0 black logo depicting the letter c with a slash through it encompassed by a circle.
Public Domain - CC0

You may copy, distribute, display, perform the work and make derivative works and remixes based on it for any purposes without attribution.

Alternate Public Domain CC0 black logo depicting a 0 with a slash through the middle encompassed by a circle.
Public Domain - CC0

You may copy, distribute, display, perform the work and make derivative works and remixes based on it for any purposes without attribution.

Creative Commons CC black logo depicting two letter c's side by side with a circle encompassing them.
Creative Commons - CC

A public copyright license allowing for the free distribution of copyrighted work.

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