What Should Professional Photographers Know About Stock Photography and Public Domains Images Free of Charge

Domains Images Free of ChargeStock photography and public domains images free of charge are not the same and can’t be used interchangeably! Here is what should photographers know about these two terms!

 Public domains are free from copyright and there are two reasons for this – either because they never existed or because they already expired. Anyone can use these photos for both commercial and personal projects and a quick search around the internet will make it perfectly clear that internet in these photos is definitely on the rise. Why?

Well, because free content is constantly in-demand and fresh and unique photos suit bloggers, marketers, and website owners better than traditional stock photos.

Stock photography and public domains images free of charge are not the same and what is even more important – they can’t be used interchangeably. Public domains don’t include the security factors of stock photography. A lot of businesses are aware of the fact that they can’t use other peoples’ work without their previous consent, but at the same time, they may not be aware of the consequences involved in sharing and promoting public domain photos as stock photography. In other words, just because one photo is in the public domain, it doesn’t mean that it is free from the risk of copyright violation.

 Despite the possible consequences and the risk, companies are offering public domains images free of charge as they are stock photography. For example, Google started promoting public domains images more aggressively recently in its organic search. With listing these photos for stock photography searches, it certainly manipulates the subject. Offering and promoting this type of content can be toxic and pretty dangerous for photographers, especially for those who don’t receive any income and automatically lose their copyright if their photos are in the public domain. Anyone who uses these photos should understand the risk.

 Public domains images must be used with care as they are not property or model-released. The author of the work is the one who gives the consent and the rights.

Another consideration is whether the photo you want to use contains trademarked items. You need to check this and then decide whether or not you will use the photo.

There is no doubt that free public domains photos can be a helpful resource, however, photos should never be used without carefully thinking through and understanding the risk.

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