Everyone does it. There’s usually never any malice involved. But many are getting caught.
Imagine this. You need an image for something, either on your website or elsewhere. So you head on over to Google and type in the name of the image you need….say “Cats Playing Pianos”. You see a host of images and grab the first image you see. Then 10 months later, you suddenly receive an email that the image was copyright infringed and now you’re in trouble.
The described scenario is becoming more common than you think. In fact, there are lawyers out there that literally make a living by finding people who are infringing upon copyrights and sue them for the damages. Noble, right?
So this brings me to the whole point of this article.
Could your website company, web designer, or web developer be setting up to potentially be sued? Are they using images on your website that you (or they) have the rights to use?
Most web companies aren’t intentionally trying to set you up for a lawsuit, but as the saying goes “you don’t know what you don’t know”. This stuff ain’t no joke. People are having to shell out 4k, 8k, and sometimes more. It’s enough to potentially put a small business out of business.
So here are ways to protect yourself:
1. Know the rules. Here’s a great place to start.
2. Educate your employees on not pulling images off Google or stealing them elsewhere for that matter.
3. Discuss this with your web development company. Be sure they are using images that they have every right to use.
The challenge is many smaller companies starting out (hayWire circa 2010 included) don’t know any better and are unintentionally doing this. Be assured that hayWire has a stock photo account and all of our images we use, we have the right to use them- free and clear.
Ready to start working with a web design firm that won’t get you in trouble? Then shout us a holla!