06 Nov

Do you have the right to use that stock photo on your website?

Tiombe Tallie Carter

Do you have the right to use that stock photo on your website? It’s possible that you are violating a copyright. You need to check, or better yet, just pay the license fee.

Stock photography comprises copyrighted images—often presented in searchable online databases—that can be licensed for specific uses. Web designer will assure you that they have the right to use stock photographs. The web designer typically has properly obtained a license to use the photos. However, this license is usually specific to the web designer and not transferable to you. The web designer does not have the right to give his license to you to use. The only way to be sure that your web designer has the right to transfer his stock photo license to you is to check his license agreement with the stock photo company. This is more easily said than done. A simpler way to avoid copyright infringement would be to pay for your own license to use the stock photo.

When hiring a web developer to design your site and choose the artwork, request an indemnity clause in your web developer agreement. An indemnity clause will provide some protection. If the copyright owner of the artwork pursues a claim against you or requires you to remove the artworks from your webpage, having the indemnity clause could obligate the web developer to cover your costs to obtain a license from the copyright owner or the costs to replace the artwork.