Images and Your Blog
Since we probably won’t get a chance to cover this during the course (unless you pick it as the topic for week 5), and since it came up a few times over the course of the workshop today, I’m going to talk a bit about using images in your guide. The first thing to remember is that a lot of what’s on the web is copyright of someone else. Images on someone’s website, or even found through google image search are generally going to be cop-righted, meaning you can’t use them without the owner’s permission. Don’t despair, however – there is a lot of stuff out there that you can use without worrying too much about copyright.
Creative Commons is a free licensing scheme that allows content creators to give advance permission to use their creations in certain ways. Provided you follow the terms of the license, you are free to use the work in your blog – or anywhere else. The following video talks mainly about music, but the same principles apply for images and photos. Vodpod videos no longer available.
Generally speaking, you should avoid works that have the No Derivative Works condition, because this means you can’t do things like crop or re-size an image.
Argh! How to I attribute when the author doesn’t say how?
For a lot of media, the author doesn’t bother to tell you how they want to be credited. Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that you don’t have to credit. For these situations something like this is fine:
- If you’re reproducing the work: Name of Work by Author, licensed under Creative Commons License Type
- MostAwesomePicture by bookbuster, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical License.
- If you’re modifying the work: This is based off of Name of Work by author, licensed under Creative Commons License Type
- ‘Even More Awesome Picture’ is based off of Awesome Picture by bookbuster, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical License.
You should link to:
- the place where you found the work
- the exact license agreement
If you want to read more about how to attribute Creative Commons works, there’s a good entry in the WikiHow.