1. May 2019

Image rights and licenses

Image rights and licenses

On the Internet, the publication of graphics, images and videos and the associated image rights and licenses is always a prisant topic. But which images may now be freely placed on the net (Internet) and which not?

If you take your own photos, you may of course use them. But even here there are some things that need to be considered. It says: “The personal rights of a person depicted may not be restricted”. This means nothing else than, if a person on your photo determines the focus of this picture, it requires the explicit consent of this person that the picture may be published.

However, there are exceptions to this:

If you use e.g. take photos at a carnival parade and then people happen to be in the photo, so do not make up the focus of the picture, this picture may be published. But if there are many people in the picture and one is in the foreground, it is better if you do not use this image.
Pictures of famous people may be published if, to be more precise, “they represent a person of contemporary history“. Let’s take as an example, if you are at a political meeting and take a picture of a politician for this purpose and publish it on your website, this is allowed. Make sure, however, that the person in question is actually performing a public function.

For a better understanding of the distinction, there is a very interesting article on Wikipedia about the so-called Caroline ruling, where the distinction becomes very clear.

Image rights and licenses for images found via Google

Through Google you can find a number of images on any topic, the choice is huge. Unfortunately, however, copyright law comes into play here, so you cannot use these images. However, Google still gives us the option of an Advanced Image Search. Here you have the possibility to narrow down your search and to filter by different options like license types and / or usage rights. Here there are authors who have waived their image rights. In order to be on the safe side, it is recommended to attach the author’s name to the image, because German copyright law provides that an author is always entitled to be named.

If you have published your own images on your website and do not want them to be displayed on the Internet in Google searches, you have the option to block this in the robots.txt file for the Google bots.

Image rights and licenses are not an issue for you if you buy images for your websites, fyler or similar on relevant portals. Here credits can be bought after the free registration with which you can in turn buy images also for commercial purposes. Prices vary depending on size and quality. Please note whether a reference to the website from which you buy the images and possibly to the photographer is a prerequisite.

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