Some downfalls on visual blogging

Tuesday, July 6


So due to some recent comments I've been thinking about the use of images on blogs. I have always felt that I've been a strong promoter of linking and crediting correctly as much as possible...but Ive realised I could be doing more.

In the past I have done a combination of asking for permission to feature an artist/photographer and other times I go ahead and post the image (more so this) and then link to the person's flickr or website (linking to weheartit or ffffound is not correct crediting). General blogging etiquette has so far seen this to be perfectly fine. But I've decided that I could be doing more, so I've made some new rules for myself....

1. Name the file with the creator of the image, this way if the image is re-posted the name of the person will go with the file. Other large profile art blogs do this and I feel I should be doing it too.

2. Try to email people a bit more and ask for permission to blog about them or only blogging people who send a submission to me. Although I'll have to find a balance on this, as emailing all the time could be pointless (if not very annoying) as well as slow down the spontaneity and pace of a blog.

Also I thought I would point out this website to people who are concerned about the use of their images on blogs and the internet. TinEye - its a reverse image search, so you can upload an image and see all the places it has been used..including where it has been cropped or altered (although it seems to be limited in searching ability). This website will also be handy as a way of finding the correct copyright owner of an image, as many weheartit and ffffound links lose that information. I know many times I've gone on an endless clicking hunt trying to find the original photographer of a photo.

Another tip that I use for finding an images source is googling the file name.

What do you think about image usage on blogs? Do you think it ok to use and link, or should people always be asking first?

EDIT: thanks for the feedback everyone, I am getting email notification of comments but they're not showing up on the blog. I think Blogger is having problems.

56 comments:

  1. I have always thought it would be great to be able to "search" for an image - thanks for the Tiny Eye link!

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  2. Fantastic. I see so many blogs (including ones that are quite well known and "respected") who never credit the photos, and when asked to, they say that they just got the photos from fffound or weheartit (or similar) and don't actually know who the photographer is.

    Hope this prompts some of them to be more proactive about crediting.

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  3. I use predominantly my own images on my blog, and can't say I've ever seen them elsewhere, but would like to think I'd be asked. And, if using someone else's pic, I do ask, and wait to hear if it's OK.

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  4. Well, I definitely will ask for mp3's from bands I like but really don't see any reason to ask photographers or illustrators for permission to post/link/credit them on a little blog post since it's free advertising for them if you think about. I've never had any artist tell me to take down a post because I didn't ask permission or they don't won't it on the www. But it's a first time for everything and if that predicament came up I would happily take it down.

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  5. Thanks Liss for bringing this up.

    I've just started my blog, and want to feature magazine editorials, shots from fashion runways, and images from music videos etc. I do link to where they are from and have (sometimes) included the name of the photographer, but I will make sure to be super diligent in doing this.

    I also want to show items from Etsy. If one post has half a dozen shops featured it would be so time consuming to email them all and wait for replies. I would of course credit them and provide a link to each shop - it is free advertising - and I would then contact them to let them know I'm featuring their work. I know I would be thrilled to have my work shown on a blog - as long as my shop link was included.

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  6. Tiny Eye huh?! Will have to look into it. I always add links, and write the author if I can to let them know, but I too could do more! Will try my best to be better at this too, thanks for this!!!

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  7. thanks so much for the TinEye link! i think you spelled it wrong, though i do like your version better than the real one! haha

    so many sites have linking "share" buttons and whatnot and i think the web is too advanced for people to stress over their images being used elsewhere, as long as they are linked. asking everyone for permission would slow down one's blog too much, in my opinion. one person making a big stink can really be discouraging, however. kudos for having such a great blog and crediting the best you can!

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  8. When crediting photos I like directly to the person's flickr/website. I'm going to start saving images with the artist's names too.

    As far as asking permission ... if I'm using an image found on Flickr I always check the person's profile and see if they mention contacting them first. If so, I do. Otherwise I use and link back to them.

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  9. Liss dear,

    This place you have created is wonderful and inspiring to so many people like me on so many different levels. Please, please never ever stop what you are doing.

    As far as crediting, as long as you email and give good credit, their shouldn't be any problem, and technically speaking under fair use media laws you have the right to post it anyway. At least, that is the way it works in the US.
    Although, I think your first idea is brilliant with the file name, and I've seen some blogs that change the file type so that when you save it, you can't do anything with it.

    That said, as an artist I really stress letting artists know. Generally, especially with a wonderful blog like this, they will say yes. Everyone is dying to have their work up here. But I do really think it is important to let the artist know so that they may at least take a look at what you have posted.

    Finally, thanks a ton for the tin eye link. That is an amazing find that I am hoping to feel the need to use with my own work one day. I keep hoping to be somewhat seen as a photographer.

    Bottom line: Blogging would never be the same without you.

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  10. Thanks so much! You gave some great tips on how to link

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  11. Copyright was one of my main concerns as well when I started blogging. I always put watermark on photos I take, and if I do put up other people's work I credit them and leave a message on their blog with the link to the post. I think it's nice when people tell you where your image/work is going.

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  12. These extra protections are a good idea and will help when the works inevitably move on from your blog to others' blogs. Personally, I'm always happy for people to post my images, as long as they link back to my site. I feel like that's what the internet's all about, sharing and spreading information and inspiration. It is nice when people email me after the fact, just so I can visit their site and connect with them. Otherwise, I may miss the post and I would not want them to think I was rudely ignoring it.

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  13. blogger etiquette! i feel like some people just don't realize that there is such a thing.

    KeepItFvncy,
    M.E.

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  14. Asking for permission is definitely more appreciated than just linking to one's flickr or blog. Of course, a photographer/artist would hardly say no to free advertising. But it's a nice thought to contact them about it. It just shows that you respect the owner's rights, etc.

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  15. I think it's appropriate to use the image and link it back to the author like you have done. My photos have been used like that, and I am totally fine with it.

    The only case when I find annoying is when using without permission or credit.

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  16. i was reading this, and from the beginning, i thought it was a good idea. Every blogger should do that. I'm reminded I should do the same thing.

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  17. I am all for crediting the artist or sometimes boutique. I would like to think that I always get permission, but occasionally I post without permission but include links and send a quick note to the artist.

    However when I first started blogging I did this and the person was upset about it so I took it down. It's weird really, cause as a photographer I would be more than happy to have my work flying around the place as long as there has been proper accreditation and some link love. To wait for emails all the time disrupts the impulsive nature of blogging.

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  18. i often feel like this picture with all my junk! haha, but regarding linking//crediting sometimes i do just link ffffound or weheartit simply bc of laziness i suppose but it is very thoughtful of you to search to credit properly! rock on! i'm going to check into this Tineye site, thanks!

    jess s//

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  19. I'm with you liss, I always try so hard to find the real source and due to we♥it or ffffound not always links you to the real source, thats kind of a down side because i can be on their shoes and say hey! why the didn't linked me. great link!!! always wanted to find one as helpful as this one.

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  20. you're amazing <3 i have to admit while i try my best to give credit whenever i know where it's from, sometimes i just get too tired trying to click those links to find the root source. weheartit & tumblrs are the worst! :( the eye sounds like the perfect tool for this thanks so much for introducing!

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  21. Wow that's really amazing that you go through so much to make sure everything you post, you have permission to do so. I really admire that, as many times, I would just choose the easy way by just linking to their flickr/website, instead of actually seeking permission. I think that's fantastic, and especially for the photographer/artist who's work it is, they will be aware of what is posted where and by who.

    There's one thing I find to be frustrating and that is when you find the most amazing photos, but the post isn't linked to the actual photographer's site. What is the point of that?

    Thanks for the great etiquette and advise.

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  22. I think it's ok to use someones image as long as you give them a good mention and proper credit. A lot of them really don't mind. Also I agree with you that emailing people for permission does slow down the pace of the blog and it's so of inconvenient because a lot of them will say yes. I'd rather send the post to them after-wards and if they want it taken down, then so be it.
    Also I was wondering if you got my email with the other posts in them?

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  23. TinEye is a great site! Thanks for sharing it. Your linking philosophy is tops.

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  24. yes i think blogger comments are having issues... not just your blog.

    Great idea with the improvements on linking and crediting. When I first started blogging I had no idea/didn't think that it would be wrong to post someone's images without their permission, so it is great that you are addressing this with all your readers.

    These days, I try to use mostly original images, but of course I want to use other people's amazing work, and always link to it and normally name it with the source for my own reference. I am really slack with emailing to ask for permission, as when I have before I have rarely receieved a response (I assume these are busy people or they just don't mind ?!)

    Keep up with the good work I love your blog!

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  25. thank you so much for the Tinu Eye link. Sometimes I cannot find the creator of the photo, so I can' t link them...And its only fair that the creator gets the credits he / she deserves!

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  26. Given that everytime you use an image and link back to the source, you're giving free advertising (who doesn't want that?!) then for most I think that's fine and I agree with Dottie about letting people know you've done it. Those who want you to ask permission first normally say so on their blogs. Asking Everyone is going to cause you a massive headache!

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  27. I think it's fine to use other people's images if you give them credit. It's more exposure for everyone ; and to be honest everyone is influenced by someone and gets their ideas from somewhere. I do think it's unfair to use an image without giving the person credit; but to have to ask everytime is a bit too much!If people put their images in the public domain then they will be used by other people in some capacity. I think it's great to use your own photography and art when you can, but sometimes you wish to showcase someone's work or use an image that sums up your words, and maybe you don't have your own.

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  28. I think it's good practice to ask people for permission. If you like their work, let them know you're writing about it, they'll be happy you're interested in what they do.
    Also, if the person knows you blogged about them, they might tweet or blog about your blog post so it's a way to promote your own blog as well. It's worthwhile in many ways.

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  29. I always write the name or blog of the photographer that I have used at the end of the post. And as you wrote in tip 1, I save the images under the name of the photographer

    I usually comment on the person's blog, letting them know I have used their images and credited them and that I hope this is okay

    With Fanciful, I email people asking if they would like to be featured and then speak via email, interviewing them and asking which websites they would like me to link to. This isn't practical with kisses though, as I post more often and may use several photographers for each post

    I agree with previous comments, that if people post their pictures on the internet, they have to accept that they will be used elsewhere. As long as credit is given. And it is essentially free advertising for them, I have received comments and emails from photographers that I have used saying thanking me that I have helped them get more page views. I would have no problem with my photographs being used on other blogs, as long as I was credited and I would like to be notified so that I could see the post (either before or after the post had been published).

    I tend not to use images from tumblr or we heart it etc anymore, because I found that hardly anything was credited

    If anyone didnt like me using their images on my blog, I would remove said images if they asked

    I think this post was very interesting to read and very informative Liss,well done!

    xx

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  30. I think naming the file lends extra credit to the owner of the image. Great idea.

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  31. Been a follower for a loooong time- please look at my blog here –
    http://seraluxe.blogspot.com/

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  32. Great post
    I most definately think one should credit where images came from. I dont think in this day and age of blogging and sharing faves do we need to ask permission.

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  33. I think you're doing a fab job and taking on this new "policy" makes it even more fab.

    I was talking to a copyright lawyer about this a little while ago and part of the problem is that the internet is global and that each country has their own laws in regards to copyright.

    I've had people credit me when using images of my artwork but I was not impressed with how my artwork was being used and as the copyright holder of the artwork I should of been consulted. After much debate they thankfully took down the image.

    At the end of the day I think it comes down to politeness and respect.

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  34. As a photographer who's had my work blogged all over the place without my permission, I don't mind as long as they credit me with a link. Of course, I love to be contacted as well just so I can see where my work is going, but I don't expect everyone to do that. I rarely do that on my blog. Like you said it's very time consuming and often times you either don't get a response or spend a long time waiting.

    I do hate when I find an amazing image I want to blog, but can't find the artist to credit them. Thanks for that link. I'll definitely be using that site.

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  35. This is a very interesting post... its really made me think about my own policy!

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  36. i used to ask permission first always, but that definitely slow things down. if the artists makes an effort to make their pictures not downloadable, i.e in flash or not right click or whatever - then I always ask.

    Now I'll often just go ahead and post about someone and then send them an email to let them know I did - figuring they'll ask me to take it down if they aren't happy about it.

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  37. It's interesting that people say it's 'too much effort' to ask people for permission. How long does it take to write an email? I think it shows respect for the person whose work you're posting.

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  38. I definitely spend time searching for the correct copyright holder of the images I use on my blog as well. I use weheartit and tumbler links as a last resort when I simply cant find the owner. I had never heard of that TinEye site you linked, and will definitely be using it as a tool to find the owners of those photos that I couldn't find otherwise. Thanks :)

    xo,
    Cassie
    (Moon Face)

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  39. This is a really interesting post!

    Bisous
    j

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  40. Thank you so much for this post, and especially for the link to that reverse image search engine. That just made my day because I recently posted music on my blog and found the perfect image to go with it, but I couldn't find the original Flickr page for the life of me. That site helped me find it in a matter of seconds (:

    Personally, I think so long as there's appropriate credit it should be fine to repost pictures (I also appreciate the idea about using the creator's name as your filename - brilliant). I try to link the image to the original page as well as providing a text link. Sadly I don't usually ask permission (mostly because I'm incredibly shy, but that's no excuse). But I won't use an image unless I found it on WeHeartIt first (because in my opinion that means it's already "out there") and I will only use it if I have the original creator to credit.

    I think if you consider websites like tumblr where there are trillions of pictures posted in a day, I would imagine people don't wait for permission to use before they post there. If it's alright to do there (with proper credit), I should imagine it would be okay to do on another blogging site.

    I think...and I hope this doesn't sound too horrible, but I think blog etiquette should go both ways; I once got a very rude message from someone on LiveJournal because an icon I was using - which I didn't make - included photography by this person's friend and permission to use it had not been given. I immediately deleted the icon and sent back what I thought was an extremely apologetic message, to which I got absolutely no response whatsoever. I don't think it's fair for people to assume that credit is left out intentionally. And it's certainly not fair to treat anyone less than kindly for a mistake they may not have been fully aware of or even responsible for.

    But that's just my opinion. (: Thank you again for this post!

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  41. I link the image to where ever I found it, but I guess that doesn't do much good if it isn't from the original owner

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  42. I hope you don't mind I posted a link to your article here http://startingyourownfashionortshirtlabel.wordpress.com/2010/07/07/photos-on-your-blog/

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  43. I once asked permission to use somebody's photo for my blog header but got rejected. It was disheartening because her reason was she doesn't trust blogs. I guess this prejudice stems from those blogger who doesn't possess the manner to give where credit is due.

    You are very kind to take crediting seriously. As one commented, I don't think you would receive rejection as Daydream Lily Blog is known and celebrated.

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  44. Thanks for the info on Tineye I am going to check it out. I am an artist while I blog my paintings I am increasingly concerned as my images get down loaded many times, where they go I have no idea. Make me feel sad that someone could be using them for their own gain, when I have put so much effort into them. Off I go to check it out.

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  45. I think I'm going to adopt these guidelines as well! And the tineye link is great, it is so frustrating trying to track something through a thousand links on an image database.

    I think crediting is important not only because it gives recognition to the person who took it but because, with out it it's impossible to learn anything about that photographers style or to ever be able to talk about them as an artistic influence.

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  46. i've been thinking about this issue a lot lately. i've gone back and forth on how credit images on my blog but it's become more an issue when i opened a tumblr account (which is just a sort of image depository to accent my normal blog). i've noticed full tumblr account and many blogs that don't link sources at all. AT ALL. tons of amazing images with absolutely no sources. i think i need to rethink how i'm posting images as well because there's always room for improvement. always!

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  47. There have been countless times I have found my photos on blogs with people not crediting or simply linking to weheartit/fffffound... It is really upsetting! I always try and save the image as the name of the artist or where i got it. Thank you for writing this post! And especially for the link to tineye.. Will definitely be checking that out!

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  48. Thank you so much for the link to TinEye!! I hate linking back to imgfave, but I so often can just not find the original image - hopefully this will help solve that problem!

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  49. i actually think it is okay, provided you name the original author, which you do. endless searching for the very right signature is pretty pointless.
    anybody online and posting away (and i mean anybody) must understand the creative commons-way of things by now.. nothing is sacred unless it's hidden. the internet is about as open as open gets, no?
    and anybody who 'promotes' another artist, like you do, should be grateful, not grieved. you know?
    etiquette is fine, i agree to it, but should not be overdone either.
    grtz - nadine

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  50. Thanks so much for this post. I finally revamped my blog and want to include images and am a bit weary of about things just getting taken without permission or credit. I think it would be nice to ask permission first but I'd be just as happy to have a link back and credit attached as well.

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  51. I think artists and photographers and the like should put their name really tiny on the bottom of the image. We can't trust that all blogers are going to be as awesome as you about it! And, sometimes, I find an awesome image and really want to go see more of their work, and sometimes I just can't find out who they are, which of course suxs! If their name was on it, or in the file name, it would help so much.

    The file name is a great idea. I google file names too.

    xo

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  52. I stock photos that I find on my laptop for future uses either for printing or blogging uses. I just go to properties, details, then edit the credits putting the link instead so I could link back. Naming with the link is not good since the special characters would be erased thus breaking the url.

    You made me reconsider so much Liss. Thank you!

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  53. @cutlex ~ oh thats a good idea of storing the url with the image via properties. I might use that one

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