by Sheren Javdan
March 10, 2014
Getty Images, the leader in public images for sale, has released millions of free photos to fight against copyright violations. 35 million photos are now available without charge for noncommercial and editorial purposes, such as online bloggers, social media users and newsworthy public interest content.
Copyright laws prohibit infringers and competitors from using or reproducing an author’s original work. Specifically, a photographer has the exclusive right to reproduce and sell copies of his or her photo, publicly display the photo, and to license the photo for profit.
For years, Getty Images has been hiring attorneys to intimidate users who use their photos without permission. Users, who did not purchase the photos, and rather copy and pasted them off Getty Image’s site, received a frightening letter threatening with copyright infringement lawsuits.The frightening letters were just that. In the last five years, Getty Images only filed seven lawsuits.
In an attempt to keep up with the vast growing Internet and generate some profit, Getty Images will use coding to embed a link back to the company’s website. Because users inevitably copy and paste the watermarked photos without paying, Getty Images and copyright owners have lost a lot of potential revenue.
Copyright holders will benefit with the new Getty Image photo for two reasons. First, by simply linking back to the original Getty Images page, embedded photos will contain information about the original photographer. Thus, giving viewers an opportunity to purchase the photo for commercial use. Second, credit will be attributed to the appropriate copyright holder.
In addition, Getty Images may gain user data that will be helpful in generating information helpful in improving their website.
Users simply chose the embed button provided under the photo and copy and paste the HTML code. Getty Images have made things even simpler by adding Twitter and Tumblr share icons.