Photo Credits 1

Not being a wealthy guy, and being a far better writer than a graphic artist, I have to find most of my illustrations somewhere else.

And being out of work, I can’t afford to pay the license fees to obtain artwork for my blog, at least not very often.   Instead, I have to use “free” artwork and photos from the web.  How I do it is simple and legal.

Creative Commons

Fat Cat--CC PROOF

Example of how I keep track of the CC Licenses for images I use on my blog

There are any number of websites that offer artwork, photographs and clip art under the Creative Commons Licensing structure.

Here on my blog I indicate an image is used under Creative Commons by including in the caption and or alternate text of the image the text “[CC]” or “(CC)”.  If a photo credit is required by the owner of the image I list the credit here on this page.  I only alter an image if the owner grants that right under the Creative Commons Licensing.

Want to read more about Creative Commons?  Here ya go:

Creative Commons
[ http://creativecommons.org ]

Note.  If you see an image that has the (CC) symbol and you would like to use it, please follow the links back to the original owner’s file/webpage and verify that the owner is continuing to license the image through Creative Commons.  Photos come and go.  Websites die.

I carefully keep a record of where I get an image, what I can do with it, and can provide proof of my authority to use a CC image to anyone who requests it for every CC image I use on this website.   See the example to the right of what I do to document that at the time I grabbed the image I was authorized to do so.

But…  people change their minds.  Just because I have the authority to use the image, the owner may no longer grant that authority to additional people.  That does not invalidate my use of the image.  Owners can not retroactively apply their decision to remove an image from Creative Commons licensing.

Flickr.com
an Awesome Resource for Free Photos

My favorite place to get photos for my blog is on Flickr because they have this cool filter in their advanced search that makes it easy to find photos where the owner of the image has posted it under Creative Commons Licensing.

Also I’ve found that most folks are willing to allow you to use their photos on your blog as long as they know that there is not going to be any commercial use of the photo and you’re willing to credit them as the photographer/owner of the photo.  For those photos on Flickr which are marked as “All Rights Reserved” it is worth sending the owner an email asking them permission to use their photo.  So far I’ve never had anyone say “no.”

Microsoft Clip Art Website

While not my favorite site, because of their huge “legal page,” I do find that I use it quite a bit.  The website is the Microsoft Clip Art website.  A lot of the major stock photo sites put some photos there as “teasers” to lead you back to their website in the hopes that you’ll buy one of their stock photos.  Which means between the “teasers” and the rest of the free artwork there, you can find a lot of free clip art and photos.

If you want to see the images which I’ve used on my blog  from the Microsoft Clip Art Website, then jump to my “Microsoft Clip Art page”

Below are photos 1-100 which I’ve used that are issued under Creative Commons with links back to their original source.

To see photos 101-  Visit my Photo Credit Page Number 2.

Fair Use

A very few of the photos on my blog are used under “Fair Use”.  Generally the images which I’m using under “Fair Use” all fall into a single category:  I’m talking about or reviewing the website, product, book, etc.  No permission is needed to use an image under Fair Use.  In all cases on the blog post where the image is located there will be a link back to the original website.  Fair use in this context means that if I talk about a blog or website or review a product on my blog then it is permissible to include an image of that product, blog or website without violating copyright or trademark laws.

For a good lay person’s explanation of US copyright law, check out this very wonderful and easy to understand video that explains all about it:  A Fair(y) Use Tale.

Public Domain

Some images are in the public domain, meaning that they were published over 50 years ago and the copy right has expired or they were created using a grant or funds from the US government.   A good collection of this type of image can be found at the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Collection:  http://www.loc.gov/pictures.  No credit is required to use these type of photos and they may be used for any purpose including commercial use.

A word about my copyrighted images and text…

This blog is copyrighted.   Unless otherwise noted,  I own the rights to all the text you read here, including the very words you are reading now.

Unless an image falls into one of the categories listed above, I also own the rights to the image.  On a practical basis that means any image which is not otherwise marked with (CC) symbol or a credit noting the owner of the image, either belongs to me or I’ve purchased the image through one of the commercial image companies like Shutterstock.

I point this out because this blog, while a lot of fun is also a lot of work.   Read my blog entries, especially the ones starting on March 9, 2012 forward and you’ll learn that I intend to turn my blogging and writing and dancing into a paying job.  In other words, the images and text that I create are not available for you to grab without permission.  That is what copyright is designed to do, protect the legal right of the creator of a work to earn money from their creation.

Here is my copyright statement:

© 1980-2012 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of any material without express written permission from this blog’s author/owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Some images and content on this blog are used under the fair use provision of US Copyright Law. Some images on this blog are used under Creative Commons Licensing and are designated by the symbol [CC].  Unless an image or content is noted by the [CC] symbol, all rights are reserved.

Having said that…  If you want to link to me, feel free to do so–I’m flattered that you think I’m link-worthy!  Just make sure that what you put on your website or in your magazine is just an excerpt, a quote, properly credited, and there is a link back here to my blog–don’t do something like copy a whole blog entry and put it on your website, even as a frame or mash up and run a bunch of ads next to it.   That’s rude.

If you want to use something on my site to a greater extent than just quoting/excerpting/linking then contact me.  We’ll work out a deal.  You’d be shocked how cheap I can be bought..  Uhmmm…  let me re-phrase that.  😉

If you really LOVE an image, then contact me.  I’m sure we can work something out so that you can get the image you want.  I might even be so flattered that you want it that I’ll give it to for free or in exchange for a credit on your blog or website.  Or, I might go over to my Zazzle Store and stick it on whatever product you want so you can buy a mug or sticker or t-shirt or whatever, and have your very own legal copy of the image.  However..just don’t “grab it”  That is called “stealing.”  It is illegal, tacky, and just down right rude.

Related Links (As I find more, I’ll add them to the list below)

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