Wikimedia/The History of Wikimedia Commons

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Wikimedia Commons, more commonly called Commons, is a Wikimedia project created to host free-use images, sounds, and other media. As of December 2020, the project contained over 67 million free media files. These files are easily usable across Wikimedia projects and are free for reuse beyond, as long as the licensing terms described on each file's page is met.

The project was originally proposed in March 2004 as an expansion of the early Wikimedia "Project Sourceberg." Project Sourceberg was meant to house primary evidence and original source texts, and in 2004 a proposal was made on the Wikimedia mailing list "wikipedia-l" to retitle it to Wikimedia Commons to include images, public domain texts, and artistic works. While the proposal did not pass as originally posited, Wikimedia Commons was opened on September 7, 2004 to hold images and other media files that could be directly embedded in other Wikimedia projects. Project Sourceberg, with its public domain texts, became Wikisource.