Blogger's Etiquette: Citing Pictures and Videos You Use

So you wanna be a blogger or already are one? Cool. I'm sure you have a menagerie of pictures on it including pics of your, your own hair, outfits,etc; and pics of and/or from others from various websites that you found inspiring and cool videos from Youtube.

When writing a paper, if you use information from another source other than yourself, you must provide the proper citations and include a bibliography at the end. It is no different in the blogging world. If you see a picture you like and want to share on your blog, make sure you give the proper citation.

Some people want you to ask first before you share a picture from their site so make sure you read the whole site to see if that is what they request. Others, myself included, don't mind if you share a picture from their site, as long as the proper citations are given. (I now pretty much watermark all photos/graphics created by me so that if proper citation isn't given, people still know it didn't come from the outside source posting the photo. You, unfortunately, cannot control how every aspect of your work is shared in the cyber world. That's the risk you run when dealing with the internet.)

BE AWARE that even if you do give proper citation, the original owner still may want you to take any of their photos and/or videos you posted down (which I think is kind of silly because if you didn't want your stuff to get possibly shared all over the worldwide web beyond your control, you probably shouldn't put it on the web in the first place. #theresathought #imjustsayin But to each, his own and you still must respect the owner's wishes. After all, it's not your photo or video.) and if I were you, I would take it down because in some cases you could get in trouble for things including but not limited to copyright infringement.

I don't know if there has been any official blog citations rules, etc created (if there are, let me know!) but below is how I normally cite pictures that I cannot take credit for creating.

Example 1: [Image Source] Make the words "Image Source" a link to the site or web address you found the picture on.

You can cite the source either directly below a photo/s or at the end of your post. Just make sure you cite!

For videos, I always make sure that I list who's video it is and a link back to the video, website and/or channel I got it from.

Just make sure you cite some kind of way. I'll admit, I didn't do this in the beginning of my blogging days. It honestly, didn't cross my mind and maybe it hasn't crossed some of yours but now that I know and you know, we should all do it. Blogging is creative writing, but the word writing is still in there so some writing etiquette (and laws) still has to be employed.

Most people are more than happy for their things to be shared (or they wouldn't have put it up on the worldwide web for all to see!) as long as they don't feel that an outside source is taking credit or their work is being "stolen" (or used inappropriately).This community thrives from sharing so lets make sure we give credit where it's due. Happy Blogging!


Unknown said…
Great and informative post.
MochaNapps said…
I'm glad you posted this. I just started blogging and someone told me the legal problems with using pictures from the internet at things like that. One friend told me it wouldn't matter since my blog is small but I don't want the day to come where someone is getting at me (or even threatening suing me!) about using their pictures.

ps: just like you, as long as there is proper citation i don't understand why anyone would be mad. You DID put it on the internet. what did you think would happen?
Milan said…
Glad you liked the post ladies.

MochaNapps: Girl, you would be surprised how sensitive some people are to controlling how their work is shared but once you upload something to the web, you lose that ultimate control in how it will be shared, unfortunately. I was a victim of this but I was incensed because they didn't cite me, not that my image was used. I knew what I was getting myself into when I decided to be on the web and this blog. I've since learned and that is why I watermark my photos so that even if people don't give me the credit, I am still getting the credit. Lol.
Thanks for this post.

I saw a pic of my hair on a website that frequently visit and it caught me by surprise.

I wasn't upset that they used it (it was an inspiration post *insert smil*) but there was no link back or credit or anything.

Since then, I've been sure to watermark all pics on my site as well.
Sey said…
I usually cite my photo sources, in a huge pile at the end of my postings. Even with a watermark it doesn't mean your photos can't get stolen. some ppl are creative editors and simply remove the watermarks
Milan said…
Seygra20: Yes I understand that if people are really that lame, they will take the time to remove the watermarks. Most people, though, the watermark deters them from just taking a photo or if they do use it, they're not scummy (or creative) enough to remove them so people can still see that it's not that person's property.

Like I said there's only so much you can do. Once something's on the net, you lose ultimate control on how it will be shared. That's the nature of the internet, ya know?
Todra Payne said…
Awesome post! I have found my pictures all over the internet. And because my site is a for profit site, not a hobby, I don't want it shared without my permission. I hire professionals to create my content, from videos to still photos and PAY for it. And in some cases, the original copyright belongs to the photographer who can absolutely sue, if he wants to. When I don't pay for original photos, I buy them at iStock. I never "borrow' other people's pix no more than I'd steal a recording artist's record without paying for it.