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Why Would You Do That?

Just because I post a photo on the Internet, it does not give anyone the right to grab a copy and use it on their own site.  It certainly does not give anyone the right to edit that image and remove it's watermark!

https://publicdomainvectors.org/en/free-clipart/Drawing-of-blackboard-cleaning-sponge/31279.html

Why do I say this?  Well, a Music, Art, Film and Food print/online magazine here in Ireland, District Magazine, did just that with one of my images.

Was I annoyed when I saw the image on their site?  Yes!  Was I even more annoyed when I realised just what they had done?  Oh hell yes!!

I contacted the editor of the magazine and got the 'oh it was the intern' excuse.  That's not a valid excuse.  If they are an intern, they are there to learn under your guidance, you should have noticed the issue.  The buck stops with you, the editor.

Back in 2018, the European Court of Justice ruled that you the consent of the photographer if you wish to use their work online. The judges said:

“The posting on a website of a photograph that was freely accessible on another website with the consent of the author requires a new authorization by that author,”

and

“Subject to the exceptions and limitations laid down exhaustively in that directive, any use of a work by a third party without such prior consent must be regarded as infringing the copyright of that work,”

Laws and rules may be different in your part of the world, but if you're in the EU, then it seems pretty clear, you can't use photographs without permission.

However, there has to be some common sense used...  I think, for me anyway, if you're going to use a photo for a commercial publication, be it print or online, ask for permission and expect to pay a fee for the usage.

If you're using it as part of a school project or a personal (non commercial) blog, then asking permission would be nice, but at the very least, credit the photographer and where possible, link back to their site.

That's it... I've spent far too much time dealing with this issue. 


Sponge image from publicdomainvectors.org

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