Monday, June 11, 2007

Photos and Copyright Problems

Like all bloggers, I use photos from a variety of sources to illustrate my stories.

In some cases such as Gordon Smith's wonderful photos, I have permission. In other cases, I have to make judgements as to whether the photos are on public record or whether use of the photos would in some way be classified as fair dealing.

Photos from news outlets fall in this second class. Here I try to ensure that I attribute the photo properly with a link back to the source. My thinking is that this makes ownership clear and acts to promote the news outlet in question. Should I be challenged on this practice, I would obviously remove the photo.

Recently I have found a new problem. Some of the news outlets I draw from have photo shows. These are great. But, as in the case of the Sydney Morning Herald, I find that I cannot give a proper URL for the photos. So while I can still copy the photo, I cannot really promote the original source. For that reason, I have decided not to use such photos in future.

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