Images are the currency of the internet – the most engaging, shareable, and Pinnable content there is. But what are the rules for using images created by someone else?
As a new, or experienced blogger, copyright and IP rules can be overwhelmingly complex. You might decide to look upon bigger brands and well-known bloggers to get clued up on the rules. We’ll be covering the Intellectual Property in our Good Read in Mollie Makes issue 53 to help clear things up. Today however, we’ve asked Ingrid of ing-things.blogspot.co.uk to tells us more about her experience of copyright infringement giving us an insight into what creatives think about it.
“I never use the work of other people. I don’t feel the need because I like to do things my way. I also never seek out my photographs, which are used everywhere on the internet, I could spend all day doing it but I think it’s all energy I could use for doing positive things. They usually just appear out of nowhere.
Personally I fell it’s okay to use my photo as long as it’s credited sufficiently with a link back to the source: me. I think it’s OK, but I like it more if people ask. That’s not too much trouble, is it?
I put a lot of effort into creating these pictures and it bothers me that people use them without thinking. I also stumble upon a lot of copied pages from my books. If I see them I react to that immediately and I ask people to remove them. It’s protected by copyright, so is everything else I create and photograph. People can’t just use them without permission, it’s that simple.
While most people agree to remove my image from their website when asked, on occasion I’ll get a really mad blogger responding back to my request as if I should see the ‘feature’ as a privilege. But if they don’t link me to my work how can I take the credit?
There are times when I think I want to stop with this online life. The time someone copied my whole Instagram feed and my name, and pretended it was hers, was a real low point on social media for me. She just didn’t want to remove it. Instead she started to threaten me online in a very nasty way. I didn’t get back online for 6 weeks after that; I was really sick of it. In the end Instagram removed her account.
Is this whole stealing pictures thing part of being online? If I see my images used unlawfully I try to stay calm about it, although I don’t always manage to.
My first question to copyright infringers is always: how would you feel if you stumbled upon my blog and saw your photographs featured on my site without credits or permission?
For now I see more positives to being online. I really hope people will start to realise how serious this is and show a little respect for the creators.”
There are so many creatives out there dealing with similar issues. Even here at Mollie Makes we sometimes have the full contents of our magazine published online. And it’s a really sad day in the office when that happens. That said, we know it’s just one person out of so many wonderful makers who support our brand. On the whole the internet is a great place. Treat creators the way you’d like to be treated.
Here’s a great article by Grace of Design*Sponge on social media etiquette.
Quick links to understanding copyright:
List of information about UK copyright laws