Sunday, June 24, 2012

Four things not to forget when posting photographs on the Web

1. Don't forget to watermark. Yes, your photograph is copyrighted, and if you find someone using it without permission you might (*might*) have grounds to insist that they compensate you. But you make it a lot harder for them to pretend they didn't know whom to contact if you take a simple step: watermarking your images. You don't have to make them ugly: a chyron in the bottom corner is enough for you to make the argument later that if someone wanted to use your photo, they needed to get your permission first.

2. Don't forget to read the Terms of Service for the website. If you post a picture to Instragram and don't mark it as private, you're not only sharing it with the world, you're letting Instragram use it too. Do you like that? If not, maybe try Flickr which doesn't claim that right from you.

3. Don't forget to follow up. If you wanted to stop your pictures from being shared with the world and you forgot to mark them as private, go to the site and do it. Or if you wanted them to be used as stock photos so you could be paid for them, make sure those settings were actually set properly.

4. Don't forget about them. There are tons of defunct web services out there. Every now and then, think about the places where you've uploaded your content and ask yourself two questions:
- "Do I still want my photos on their servers?"
- "Are they paying me what they're supposed to be paying me?"

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Thanks for commenting. Posts and comments aren't legal advice; requests for legal advice in the comment probably won't get answered. Sorry to have to do this but someone someday is going to make me glad I did...