I am always aware to look at where graphics and photographs that I find on the internet come from. I use a ton of graphics and when my Marketing genius superstar counterpart isn’t creating them for me, I look to the internet for free stuff. From the moment I started doing my job i check the origination of pictures that I want to use. Many times there are obvious watermarks over the ones that you have to pay for. That’s fine. I don’t use those. Sometimes however there are no watermarks. That is when you have to look at the URL tied to the graphic to see where it originates.
This graphic was one I wanted to use in a newsletter
When I expanded the picture (above) to look at the origination URL this is what it showed. (I have blocked out the url so I don’t make any enemies with this post.)
It was not from Shutterstock or RFI or any other paying site, you will have to take my word on this. Feeling that everything was fine, I proceeded to save it. That is when it became clear where this picture came from. As I proceeded to save it to my pictures file it was given a name, which we all change to something we can remember. The name of this file was:
shutterstock_133098560 This means one of two things. Either the group / person who used this particular graphic stole it OR they bought it and didn’t rename it. Either way, I wasn’t touching it!
The moral of this story is that you should always check not only the place of origination BUT also the assigned name the graphic is given when you save it to your files. If you like it and you want to use it get permission or buy it. Any other solution is just asking for trouble.