In this post I will answer the following questions and more.
-What are the laws?
-What pictures are protected by copyright laws?
-What are fair use pictures?
-What are the consequences of Re-posting someone else Photos
Being a blogger we all as a community write about any and everything, and more than likely learn from each other. When I myself started I learned from my wife and friends on what I could and could not do. Here are some mistakes that they have done and went through and what could happen to you.
Every day we see post with picture on them, some posted by the owners and some not.
-Some with sources and credits and some not.
3 weeks ago my friend who writes about buildings in city life got a letter from the Photographer of a picture he had used on his blog. That he had found on Google image in the search menu. The Photographer was less than happy to see her work on his page without her permission and told him to take it down now. Which is did in right after reading her email. But it doesn’t end there. She later went on to Sue him for damages for the posting of her work. He is still in the middle of this legal matter and this is what he has learned. When he told me this, my jaw just dropped and I myself started going through my own blog with a fine tooth comb making sure I wasn’t breaking any laws without knowing.
Here is what we learned from this
-It doesn’t matter if you site or source the photo
-didn’t know what you was doing was wrong
-that you didn’t make money off of it
-that you didn’t clam the photo as your own
-if you have a disclaimer on your blog
-Or if you have taken down the photo after the photographer asked you
Basically if you did not get permission from the Photographer themselves, to use their work. You are in the wrong and can get Sued. You have to have ether permission to from the source to use their work or get it from a copyright free/public domain site. Having someone else photos on your blog without permission is basically having a ticking time-bomb ready to blow at any giving time.
I know as bloggers we see other bloggers using others peoples photos every day and think it’s okay because “everyone else is doing it, can’t be wrong!” but it is. Not only that it’s not worth getting Sued over. Photographers make their living off of their photos and have it pretty rough. Most photographers would gladly let us use some of the photos if we just ask. It’s the not asking part that angers them the most and I get why. To use we may see it as giving free advertising for the photographer but if that photographer already sold the right to that photo you are using, it comes back at them for the damages sometimes.
Even more scary are the companies using these laws for profit by purposely buying rights to photos and hopes that someone else using them so they can Sue them. They have high price lawyers and the law on their side and they will win.