Blogging has become easier and more attractive in recent years to a number of people who run their own businesses.
While many use blogging as a tool for self-promotion, it is also a fantastic way to comment on things that are happening of interest to you on other blogs or websites, creating community and bonds through niceties I’d like to call blogging and citizen journalism etiquette.
Today we’ll talk a bit about the use of images on blogs, in newsletters, and on websites.
For our purposes there are three kinds of images:
1. Images you own already
2. Images for sale
3. Images owned by other entities
IMAGES YOU ALREADY OWN
If you took a picture of something, designed an image or are the image subject and have the image in your possession, you can use it for whatever you like.
For instance, I could upload a headshot that I’ve had taken or graphics from the Voices.com website and I’d be in the clear. Why? Because we own them.
Here’s an image that David designed for our website.
IMAGES FOR SALE
Images you have bought or licensed are good examples of work that is not your own but now belongs to you to use in an agreed upon manner. Think of it like when you are recording for a client and they want a full-buyout. If you have bought the full rights to an image, you can use it indefinitely for any purpose, but if you have only licensed it, you may have some restrictions with the usage, including how you can use it, where, when and for how long.
Here’s an image I bought specifically from a seller on iStockphoto.com to demonstrate this point. The rights belong to the artist Andrey Volodin. I have a standard Content License Agreement to use this image of the Easter Bunny surrounded by eggs:
IMAGES FROM OTHER ENTITIES
As a professional voice actor, you wouldn’t want someone using your audio demos off of your website without crediting you as the source, would you? Alternatively, if they said you were the origin of the clip or voice over and had the courtesy to link to your website, it would be OK, wouldn’t it? You’d be getting publicity (priceless) and recognition for your talent while also being given a link that may bring you new business.
Below is an image I have found owned by someone else, a different entity.
To properly acknowledge where it came from, all I need to do is check for any restrictions of use, and if I don’t find any, mention where I got it and include a link to the source. You can mention those details either in the body of your text or at the bottom as a footnote.
If you read Voice Over Times, you have likely noticed that all of the material is sourced and includes a link back to the source. Similarly, any iStockphoto artist whose image we have purchased and featured is credited as per the iStockphoto requirements at the bottom of each VOX Daily post.
The image I am about to show you is from a website I have become very interested in called Etsy, a marketplace for all things handmade. This image, specifically, is from an Etsy seller’s shop called Sweetbeets, a company that makes letterpress cards with childhood themes for birthdays, baby announcements, and cards that are “just because”.
I look forward to writing about other aspects of blogging and journalism etiquette. Next, we’ll look at the value of links.
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Â©©©iStockphoto.com/Christine Balderas (blackboard image)