Are the Pictures on Your Website Safe to Use?

smartphone-623722_1920Have you ever looked on google for a picture, saved it and then published it on your website? If so, you may be using a Copyright picture. There are actually laws that could get you in trouble for using for using a Copyrighted pictures.

The good news is, if you are in fact using a picture you took randomly on the internet, it is not too late to change it. Here are a couple of things that could help you while using pictures for your website, or even school project.

1 – You can take pictures from a public domains. These sites let people put pictures that are up for grabs, that the copyright has been removed or has never been put on the picture.  You just need to read the License or fine prints of the website, so that you know that these pictures are safe to use.

2- There is Creative Common CC0 Law that you can look for which is: The person who associated a work with this deed has dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law. You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission (The only thing I found about it is: realize that the owner may decide to change the license after you use the image and may that trigger a request for removal). It is important to know that a Creative Commons license is non-revocable, although explaining that to someone who didn’t read the license they assigned to their image could be a waste of time. So technically, you are legally covered, but could just be bothered by the photographer if he didn’t read what he was putting his picture under when he decide to use the CC0 law. 

Of course, you may want to read more if you decide to sell the picture. It also does not cover you if you use pictures that could be degrading to a person. The following site has a lot more information about how to use pictures legally for those who are interested.

It is always important to read the site’s licensing, to make sure you are following the correct legal steps. Here are a few site that are registered under the CC0 Law, to allow people to post pictures for you to use in whichever of the following way, while being legally protected.

This site here: allows you to take pictures, but you have to give a proper recognition to the photographer. This categorizes the picture under their corresponding licenses. You will want to read what different license encloses as some of the license permits you to use the pictures only with recognition. is another site that allows you to use picture, but again, make sure to check in which license the pictures are under.

You can also look for copyleft pictures, they just may be a little harder to find.

Natalie Cormier

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