How to know if an image is copyrighted? Find out in just 3 steps!
How do you know if an imag …
Every day we use images that we find on the Internet but many times we have no idea who these photographs or illustrations belong to. How to know if an image is copyrighted is important when it comes to sharing graphic content that is not ours.
We live surrounded by images in the media and in social networks. But we don’t know what copyright is or what copyright is. Although we have access to an image, it does not mean that we can or should use it freely.
Knowing what intellectual property law consists of not only means that you respect the images created by other people, but you can also avoid any problem related to copyright.
We are going to immerse ourselves in the world of copyright so that you are clear about how to know if an image is copyrighted 📸
- What is copyright?
- Difference between copyright and copyright
- Types of copyright
- Creative Commons licenses
- How to know if an image is copyrighted in 3 steps
To answer the question, how do you know if an image is copyrighted? we must start from the following premise: The contents of any kind, whether they are texts or images, should not be freely shared.
What is copyright? They are a set of rules that establish the legal rights that the authors of any literary, artistic, musical or cultural work have for the simple fact of being its creators.
Copyright is part of fundamental human rights, that is why they must be respected. This means that if we are going to share a work partially or totally, we must do so taking into account the copyright of said work.
The easy access to a large amount of textual or graphic content that the Internet makes us believe that we can make use of it without any problem.
In practice this is the case, but we must understand what copyright is and what is copyright in order to learn the importance of respecting the works of others.
It is usual that copyright and copyright are the same but they are not. While it is true that copyright in English is translated as copyright, it is about two different concepts.
What does copyright mean? Copyright focuses exclusively on the legal rights related to the reproduction and distribution of a work. While copyright also includes moral rights over the work, that is, the ownership of the work to its author.
Let’s take a simple example: if you are a writer and you publish a novel, the copyright of that work includes the moral right that establishes that you are its creator. No one else can claim to be the author of your novel.
While it is the copyright that establishes the legal rights related to the reproduction and distribution of your work. If someone else wants to make use of the partial or total content of your novel, they must pay you and request your permission to use it.
Something as simple as knowing if an image is copyrighted can seem complicated when you don’t know the different types of copyright.
Intellectual property law, as copyright is also known, is of three types: Copyright, Copyleft and Creative Commons.
Each of these types of copyright licenses is intended to protect and defend the copyrights and intellectual property of works.
This type of license is the best known of all, which is why it is often used as a synonym for copyright.
How to know if an image is copyrighted involves a clear understanding of what copyright is. This license is used to indicate that only the author can use the created work.
The copyright license states that the author of the work is the only one who can do what he wants with it. This means that if someone wants to use a copyrighted work, they must ask the author for permission and pay for the use of its content.
Within the types of copyright, the copyright license is the most restrictive. That is why it is common for people to search for copyright-free images, images without copyright or images without copyright if they want to use them without asking for permission or having to pay for it.
If what you are looking for is to know how to know if an image is copyrighted with a copyright license the symbol used is ©.
Now that you know what copyright is, you can understand what a copyleft copyright is.
This type of license allows each copy of a work to be redistributed according to the rights that the author wishes to assign.
In other words, copyleft guarantees the distribution of a work under certain conditions previously established by the author of the same.
Among types of copyright, the copyleft license is represented by an inverted letter C within a circle. This symbol it is the opposite of copyright.
When we talk about how to know if an image is copyrighted we cannot fail to mention Creative Commons licenses.
Regarding image search, probably the most common searches contain phrases such as: free images without copyright, image banks without copyright, images free of copyright or images without copyright in Google.
If that is what you are looking for, we are sure you will like them. Creative Commons licenses because they are free. Therefore they differ from other types of copyright because they allow works to be shared without any payment being made for them.
Creative Commons is an organization that allows copyright registration so that creative works have a more flexible license than copyright.
When it comes to Creative Commons licenses, you don’t have to worry about how to know if an image is copyrighted because you have the freedom to share images.
The only thing you have to take into account is what type of license Creative Commons is the one that owns the image you want to use. That is why we will explain below what each Creative Commons license consists of 👇
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Usually if you are in the process of how to know if an image is copyrighted it is because you are looking for free royalty-free images.
If so, in the Creative Commons licenses you will find what you want so much. Although it is not that these licenses do not have copyrights and intellectual property or are images free of copyright, it is true that they offer you copyright under certain conditions.
Then, How to know if an image is copyrighted with Creative Commons licenses? You just have to identify what type of Creative Commons license the image you want to use has.
This type of license allows any type of work to be used as long as the authorship of the creator is acknowledged.
The use of the work includes commercial purposes, as well as the creation of derivative works and their distribution without any restriction.
How to know if an image is copyrighted with recognition license? Its symbol is composed of the double C of Creative Commons (CC) and the figure of a person accompanied by the word By.
Recognition – Non-commercial
In this type of license, the creation of derivative works is allowed as long as there is no commercial use of them. Nor can the original work be used for commercial purposes.
How do you know if an image is copyrighted with a non-commercial license? Its symbol is composed of the double C of Creative Commons (CC) and the figure of a person and a crossed out E accompanied by the words By and Nc, respectively.
Source: Creative Commons
Attribution – Non-commercial – Share the same
This type of license does not allow commercial use of the original work or derivative works. Nor is their distribution authorized unless they have a license equal to that of the original work.
How to know if an image is copyrighted with license recognition – non-commercial – share alike? Its symbol is made up of the Creative Commons (CC) double C and the figure of a person, a crossed out E and an inverted C accompanied by the words By, Nc and Sa, respectively.
Attribution – Non-commercial – No derivative work
This type of license does not allow commercial use of the original work or derivative works.
How do you know if an image is licensed copyright recognition – non-commercial – no derivative work? Its symbol is composed of the double C of Creative Commons (CC) and the figure of a person, a crossed out E and two parallel lines accompanied by the words By, Nc and Nd, respectively.
Recognition – Share the same
This type of license allows commercial use of the original work and derivative works. In the case of its distribution, it must be done with a license equal to that of the original work.
How to know if an image is copyrighted with license recognition – non-commercial – share alike? Its symbol is composed of the double C of Creative Commons (CC) and the figure of a person and an inverted C accompanied by the words By and Sa, respectively.
Attribution – No derivative work
This type of license allows the commercial use of the work as long as no derivative works are generated.
How to know if an image is copyrighted with license recognition – non-commercial – share alike? Its symbol is composed of the double C of Creative Commons (CC) and the figure of a person and two parallel lines accompanied by the words By and Nd, respectively.
One of the most useful tools in the process of how to know if an image is copyrighted is the CC Search, which is none other than the Creative Commons Image Search.
So that you are clear about which images without copyright you can use, you just have to do the following:
Login to Search CC and put in the search engine a word related to the image you need.
Each image that appears below will have the symbols of the Creative Commons license that it owns. Take a good look at which one is the most suitable for the use you are going to give the image.
You can also filter the images according to the type of license you want them to have.
Finally, another option that allows you to find copyright-free images are the image banks like Unplash, Pixabay, and Freepik.
You already have all the information you need to start using images without any problem. What are you waiting to find the image you are looking for? 🧐