Google is improving the way it handles and presents copyrighted images through Google Image Search.
Credit where it’s due
Users have been repurposing the pictures they find via Google Images since it launched, over 17 years ago. Sometimes, such repurposing is legally dubious.
Now, Google is adding an ‘Image Credits’ link to Search result for which it can determine the rights holder. Search will now pull the info from image metadata and present it with search results.
So, it’s not exactly new info, but it is a good deal more visible.
Searching for commercial use
Many of the graphics discovered via Google Image Search are not available for commercial use, but some are.
Once a search is performed, users can easily sort results by marked usage rights. The Google Images ‘Tools’ button reveals a few options, including a ‘Usage Rights’ drop-down menu.
There, ‘Labelled for reuse with modification’ provides probably the broadest usage permissions available.
In your image
Ensure your proprietary images are properly tagged with all the necessary metadata before they are uploaded online.
If you own the rights to an image and you reckon Google Image Search is showing its usage rights incorrectly, Google invites you to let them know via the Google Search Forum.
Is Google properly siding with copyright owners, or simply getting better at playing both sides?
Copy Transmission is a Melbourne-based agency :: Better Brands. Loud & Clear.