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Anki flashcards & copyright infringement?

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Hello Duolingo team,

I am currently learning Irish with Duolingo, and at the same time putting together (by hand) an Anki flashcards deck containing the words I am learning here, and sharing them on the Irish forum.

Does this constitute a copyright infringement? Anki is now asking all its users to declare that "the material I am sharing is entirely my own work, or it is in the public domain, or I have obtained a license from the intellectual property holder(s) to share it here."

Could you please tell me what's Duolingo's view on this? Can I go on sharing this deck with my fellow Irish learners?

Thanks for your help. And sorry if what I did was illegal, I'll remove it if it's the case.

Stéphanie https://ankiweb.net/shared/info/375040131

March 3, 2015



Whether your duplication of Duolingo’s list of words is a copyright infringement or not could depend upon the laws of the country where you reside; consult with your local experts in copyright law to receive a more definitive answer. In any case, it doesn’t sound as though your deck would meet any of the conditions of the Anki declaration (at least not yet, with regard to the last condition).


Considering there's a Memrise course with the Duolingo vocabulary, I doubt if they care too much if you do an Anki one. If you're just doing words, anyways, how can they copyright those? As long as you're not doing it sentence-for-sentence I don't think you'll have any trouble.


The individual words aren’t copyrightable, but the collection of words could be, depending upon the laws of the country involved. For example, in the States, it would depend upon whether any originality was involved in forming the collection; a telephone directory would have no originality (despite the effort involved in compiling the list), while a list of first names might, depending upon the criteria used for their inclusion. (This could be among the reasons for the unusual choice of vocabulary observed in the courses here — to establish originality for the sake of US copyright law, if not for other jurisdictions.)

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