I don't have any expertise in the copyright field, but I will say this: my contributions to the site so far are photographs I have personally taken. Some of them have also been used on other sites (e.g. wooljersey, Ebyker). I have posted these photos and information about the items for anyone's use. If any of you can think of a way to make money with my images, more power to you. But I'm confident that the members of this group are simply interested in the knowledge that can be gained through those of us willing to share it.
My knowledge of vintage bikes and parts is minor compared to many on this list, and only a speck of sand on the beach of this group's collective knowledge. I am interested in (and honored to be) sharing what little I can with all of you, even at the risk of some insidious use of my efforts. I hope that anyone who contributes to Jon's fantastic site does so in that same spirit. As far as I know, this is a labor of love for Jon, who has put literally hundreds of hours into the project with no thought of gain - except for creating a shared knowledge base for our reference.
I can easily imagine that some of the contributions in VeloBase use images that were acquired on the web without much thought as to copy infringement. I would be shocked to discover that anyone doing so gained anything from it other than the satisfaction of making obscure information available in a really handy format. I would also be surprised if Jon has any effective means of checking copyrights, other than asking VeloBase contributors to exercise care.
Having gotten to know Jon a bit through participating in his project, I'm fairly confident that any copyright holder who demanded that he remove their material would get a quick, positive response. A civil request might be even more effective.
Dave Ross Portola Valley, CA USA (From where I was able to ride my vintage Razesa yesterday to watch the ATOC prologue - my bike and Gary Weeks' Mercian were the only ones I spotted with visible brake cables and DT shifters!)