Attn: Bloggers – It Could be Costly not to Take Note

Michael Kors, time, watch, clock
Photo by Gale E


The time to be careful is definitely now and if you are a seasoned blogger you are probably aware of the risk involved in simply cutting/copying/snipping a photo from the internet and using it on your blog without the express permission of the owner.

I try to take as many of my own photos as possible and always leave home with my camera or mobile because one never knows when the ‘perfect’ shot will appear. My friends even support me in my blogging so I was quite pleased to be gifted with a super cool selfie stick for Christmas (which I was told would better allow me to capture those extra difficult shots).

The Story
But there are times when nothing in your library works and that’s when you will need to consider getting something from another source. When this occurs I usually have a chat with my dear friend Mr. Google but make it a point to acknowledge the original owner as the source. Now I am not sure if this will make everything ok especially after reading this article by Living for Naptime entitled: The $7,500 Blogging Mistake That Every Blogger Needs to Avoid!; a story which started out as follows:

“If you’ve ever taken an image from Google search to use on your blog, you need to read this blog post. It’s both humiliating and anxiety inducing to write all of this down, but I’ve been carrying this secret for over a year now and I want to make sure that no other blogger has to go through it. 

In February 2014, I created a post about a green pepper coupon. (Yes, there are actually sometimes coupons for green peppers) Anyway, I finished creating the post and instead of doing the RIGHT thing which would have been to either pay for a stock image or take my own photo, I went to Google, typed in “Green Pepper” found one that I liked, Right click->, Save As and uploaded it to my blog post…and then I forgot about it.” Read more

The Sad Truth
At the end of it all, the author was made to pay a seriously excessive amount of money in perceived ‘damages’ as a result of being sued. Before leaving my own thoughts I decided to take a look through the comments (motivated by the pain/anxiety expressed by the author) and came across this suggestion which can be used via a Google image search.

“Just some advice if you turn to google images: below the search bar there is another menu…choose search tools, then choose usage rights, and choose the option accordingly …”labeled for reuse” is prob best. Google will then only show you images that are labeled for reuse :) hope this helps someone.”

I gave it a try and here is what the screenshot looks like based on the above steps; note that you have one of five ‘reuse’ options to choose from.

Google search tools screenshot


Two Additional Sources
These two related websites were provided as sources of additional info so you may want to check them out when you have a chance.

Let’s Keep It Simple
If you are wondering about all of the technical sounding ‘mumbo jumbo’ which can be rather confusing, this excerpt (found at the bottom of the 14 Amazingly Free Stock Photo Websites article compliments of can help us remain clear.

Attribution and licenses explained.
When you do a Google Images search, the resulting photos are not necessarily ones that you’re free to immediately use. In most cases, the photos are still covered by photographers’ copyrights.

If you’re looking for photos to use for a design and want to keep yourself out of copyright trouble, you need to locate websites that explicitly define the copyright license of each image. For all the sites listed above, the license is generally pretty easy to find. There’s typically a description of the license on every page or at least a link to a description. Here are two license types you’re likely to find on these sites:

Creative Commons zero means that you can use the photos  in any way you’d like, without asking permission.

Creative Commons with attribution means that you can use the photo in any way you want, as long as you credit the creator of the photo.

Attribution is simple: If you include a photo on one of a web page, add text that cites the photographer (“Photo by John Smith”) and be sure to include a link to his or her site, if there’s one.

Free Image Sites
I have not yet had a chance to click on any website – which is my honest disclaimer here – but other bloggers sharing across all of the various links noted in the post above have advised that free images are available in some form or fashion @


Please tell us!
Has this info helped you in any way? Have you had a ‘near death’ experience from the unauthorised use of a photo? Is there a specific site you use to obtain images? Let’s support each other by being safe, as our words and thoughts go out through the blogosphere!




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Barbadian mother and lover of laughter; story teller and best-selling author; happy to follow God's lead and to live my mantra: "you've gotta be a rainbow in the lives of others when it rains."

6 thoughts on “Attn: Bloggers – It Could be Costly not to Take Note”

  1. I always use my own photos and for that reason I’m very happy you wrote this very informative post! 🙂 The other viewpoint is knowing that anyone can steal anything I put online and I’m taking that risk by publishing my own photos. So I’d like people to be aware of copyright issues before they use pictures they find online. Let’s just all respect each other, be nice to each other and have fun blogging! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would have to say that since I have been a WordPress blogger I make it a point to take as many photos as possible. I use my phone and my camera, and just snap, snap, snap – because this copyright thing is a big thing. Thanks for commenting and best of luck for 2016.

      Liked by 1 person

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