There is a rumor going around the net. Like all rumors, I don't know if it is entirely true, a little bit true, or a whole lot of urban legend - entirely NOT true and designed to either scare or make conversation.
About a week ago, a bunch of blogs were closed down, wiped right off the web without any warning. Supposedly, these blogs were doing naughty things like offering down loads of music, movies, tv shows and more that they didn't have permission to do. Observers thought, hmmm, that is a lot of blogs ......
And then came the ominous words, copyrighted materials. What were these copyrighted materials? Movies, songs, videos. Books? Pictures?
Aw c'mon! You might say. Pictures, on my little blog?
Well, if you look at my blog, and at a lot of other blogs, you'll see a copyright notice that warns you not to use my writing or my pictures without asking my permission first. I'm serious. I put time and effort into my writing, into the pictures I take and how I edit them. I don't do this for my living (yet), but I can really imagine how those who do, feel.
On my blogs about pollution, I used pictures of the Great Pacific Trash Patch because I don't have those pictures myself. I made sure that I credited where I got the pictures, and under the post I added, "If you own these pictures, and you want them removed, please contact me and they will be removed immediately." Good enough? May-be not.
So should bloggers be scared to death and start removing pictures from their blogs if they don't have permission? I don't think so, but I do think that bloggers need to be more careful about their pictures. I know that there are places like Big Stock Photo's where you can get free images if you join their site, and other pictures for $1 or less. If you only use one paid picture per month, that is a measly $12 per year.
Or you could contact me, and ask if you can use mine.