The Tech Guy . . .
New Technology Keeping Up
Is it really yours, can you use it ?
There is a growing trend now to use an image along with your writing ( whatever that may be for ) as a way to further connect readers to your piece but where did you get that image and can you use it come time for public display-legally.
While many choose to place a Google image alongside their works , and state this is where they got it from, legally this is not enough to protect you from possible claims against you for copy write infringement. Should you decide to publish your works for profit, or on a large scale not for profit without the expressed written consent of the original artist, in this instance simply stating you are using a borrowed image is not enough.
Were you aware that most free license or Google images contain tracking codes, so while you think you may be clever by changing colors or adding effects to an image just enough to change the original look, it IS still very traceable.
Now after you take into consideration the time and effort of tracking the artist down, and seeking permissions or hammering out any financial obligations to the original artist, you are still presenting an image that has most likely been viewed many times before , as is what happens with popular Google images or stock photography , is this what you want for your original works, think about that for a moment…
If you are publishing a book, cd, website…anything should you not want to have an equally original artwork done specifically for you ?
Should you decide to use a stock or free license image ,
and do not follow through with the legal steps to secure rights to use, are you
willing to lose your works as well as any possible profits while your items
have been removed from sale while you correct this issue ?
Simply put, a badly hand drawn stick figure is better for your legal standing, than any stock item.
It may not always seem like a big deal at the time BUT, you owe it to yourself , your viewers, and your works to invest in original graphics , find an artist who is willing to work with any budget constraints you may have, and give yourself a heads above break and avoid headaches down the line.
I think you’re worth it, don’t you ?