The lesson learned in a nutshell:
When nabbing pics for your blog (cuz hey... posts are SO much more enjoyable when they're pleasing to the eye) MAKE SURE THE PIC YOU SNAG ISN'T COPYRIGHTED! Googling an image & copy and pasting it is a BIG no no. Research that photo, folks!!!
What does copyrighted mean? According to the dictionary:
The exclusive right to make copies, license, and otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or artistic work, whether printed, audio, video, etc.In other words any work or picture you or someone else creates is automatically copyrighted. We don't need to do anything to receive that protection. The copyright law exists to protect us all - and that's a good thing.
Disclaimers will not protect you from getting your pants sued off.
What to do? Take down copywrited pics. Replace with freebies.
Where can you get them? Here's a few sites I keep bookmarked:
1 - Creative Commons lisence pics search for photos that are free for use. (Some restrictions may apply.)
2 - Wikimedia Commons search for freebies here, too.
3 - WANA Commons a group on Flickr created by Kristen Lamb, founder of WANA International, where we can upload our own photos to share with other bloggers. FOR FREE.
4 - Pixabay
Here's just a few pics to show that good ones ARE available for free. I'll start with my favorite - cartoon images:
Or if you're into real photos:
Best place to get freebies??? Take you own pics & use those so your true awesomeness is revealed.
My heart goes out to Ms. Loren, but I'll tell you what ... this is one lesson I don't plan on learning the hard way. And by the way, this post is in no way meant to be legal advice - just a suggestion to my fellow bloggers to keep you from ending up walking around in your skivies.
Thoughts? Suggestions? Know of any other freebie sites I didn't mention?