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Copyright Information

Information on University policies governing copyright compliance.

Jason L. Hardin

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Jason Hardin
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Library circulation, room 303B

ext. 8181 (on campus)

Office hours: 2:00pm - 3:00pm, Thursdays; and by appointment

Fair Use provisions can leave you wondering if the image you found can be used or not without infringement. Here is a brief outline of five scenarios for using images in your work. 

Note that in ALL cases, properly attributing the original creator is necessary.

Option 1: Use whatever you want and claim fair use.

  • A Google image search that brings back millions of results. 
  • This is a problem because...
    • no regard for the original creator's rights
    • no way to know if your use is fair use
    • opens you up to charges of infringement especially if the work can be found online.

Option 2: Pay to use professional stick images

  • stock photos like Getty Images, Shutterstock, Adobe Stock, Dreamstime, and 123RF offer great high-quality photos for a cost
  • they can be expensive
  • consider what the use is

Option 3: Use Stock photos provided by a free image source

  • websiWebsitesain Public Domain images like: pixabay, pxhere, unsplash, vistacreate, pexels, and Canva
  • imageImagesd be taken from elsewhere. If you use a photo from Pixabay, run the file through a reverse search on Google Images to try to identify the source and determine if it is ok to use.

Option 4: Use Public Domain or Creative Common-licenses works

  • Creative Commons has legally established and broadly permissive livenses that encourage free creative exchange
  • Try: openverse, Flickr's creative commons, Wikimedia commons
  • Most work prior to 1923 are in the public domain
  • Try other places like: the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, National Gallery of Art, ArtSTOR, rawpixel, the Smithsonian and others.

Option 5: Create own image using AI 

  • Try tools like Dall-E 2, Canva, Artbreeder, or Deep Dream Generator
  • only humans can hold intellectual property rights