Copying Photos from Google and Using Them
You went online and found a clever image, video or copyrighted text that works perfectly with your business’s new marketing campaign. Can you simply start copying photos from Google and using them on your website, social media page, blog, etc. without permission? The answer is…it depends….But probably NO!
Copying photos from google or from someone’s website is STEALING! It would be the same as going to their place of business and shoplifting. DO NOT DO IT! You will be caught and you will be sued by the individual or corporation that owns the rights to the photos you stole.
In some cases, one’s use of the intellectual property of others may be acceptable under a doctrine called “fair use.” In many cases, however, especially when the purpose of the use is for the user to generate revenue, “fair use” does not apply. Thus, the user must obtain permission from the image’s owner prior to its use. And this applies to many types of intellectual property, including music.
Locating the owner of intellectual property can be difficult, and in some cases, the owner may charge a fee for its use. A lack of due diligence by the user can result in a cease-and-desist order, a demand by the owner for damages, and a lawsuit.
We suggest purchasing the rights to images from a stock library subscription. This is the best way to ensure that you have beautiful photos AND the rights to use them.
For more information about “fair use,” visit copyright.gov.