Publishing Images Online: Myths And Truths Of Internet Copyright
If you are an online publisher you are certainly aware of issues surrounding the use of images and other copyrighted content on your Web site. Though I have long been pointing at initiatives such as the Creative Commons, Stock Exchange and a few other resources to find royalty-free images for publishing work, it is always useful to look at the status of copyright and to really understand what, according to many nations, laws amounts to the following: If you do not have specific written permission from the owner of a photo, you cannot legally display any image on a Web site, post it to the Usenet, copy it, send it around by email or other means, make photos derived from it, sell it, or otherwise exploit it. If you like to further get scared by indulging in the strict view of legal attorneys you may like to go back and review The 7 Deadly Myths of Internet Copyright, a dated (2001) but still actual essay clarifying the issues of image use from a strictly legal viewpoint. Though I would agree with you that some of this is not to be taken literally, for those of you realizing that such laws may, in some cases, limit too greatly our abilities to communicate, express or share our ideas, it is time for you to go beyond the surface and to review some of the new ideas emerging in this field. The massive expansion of copyright protection is a dangerous threat for all of us, "a change that shifts the entire purpose of copyright from supporting creativity to granting total and absolute property rights not to artists but to middlemen."
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