Written By: Timothy Fish Published: 12/10/2007
Okay, here is a hint for bloggers. If you find an image on the web, such as on a stock photography sight like FotoSearch or Comstock Images, and it has a watermark that says ďCOPYRIGHTĒ in big bold letters, they really donít intend for you to use it on your blog. If you want to use one of these images, the proper thing to do is to pay them and they will be happy to allow you to use an image that doesnít have the watermark on it. Actually, no matter where you find an image on the web, you shouldnít be using it to decorate your blog without the copyright ownerís permission.
Is that hard to understand? Letís say it another way. If you didnít take the picture, if you havenít asked for permission, if the photo isnít owned by the US government, if you donít have a written license agreement, you shouldnít be using it on your blog, website or anywhere else. To do so is stealing.
A few mistakes are one thing. In some cases, the use of photos may be fine, since using them is benefiting the copyright owner. Most publishers and authors, for example, appreciate people displaying images that promote the author or a book, but other types uses are completely unacceptable. It seems like many blogger not getting it through their heads, and they donít even care. Even worse, many of the people who are using copyrighted images without permission claim to be Christians. What kind of example are we showing to the lost world if we donít at least try to practice what we preach? Then to make it even worse, Christian writers are among the ones who are doing this. If anyone understands the importance of fairly compensating people for the use of their intellectual property, Christian authors should and yet the message many are giving the world is that we donít care about treating others fairly. It ought not to be this way.
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