**Updated (please see end of the post)**
A few days ago, a fairly new online store emailed me to ask if they could use some of my images on their website as I was wearing a product that they are currently selling. They were apparently featuring images of their customers and bloggers modelling the range.
Sure, I replied, and I’d appreciate a link back to the blog.
A reply came saying thanks, blah blah blah and this:
“We aren’t linking to other sites at the moment though we may in future, but we will certainly put ‘modelled by cosmetic-candy, which should lead people to your blog.”
Now, although a little bit taken aback, I didn’t quite get annoyed until really thinking about it later. (That, and my favourite Irish Pixie (after Colin Farrell) giving me a Rocky-like pep talk on Twitter.)
I have decided I am not too amused by the situation:
Pictures take work. A lot of work.
I am not alone I’m sure, when it comes to having pictures nicked for whatever reason – for other people’s sites, for eBay etc. and I am pretty zen about it although it is mighty frustrating when you have put a lot of time and work into your pictures.
It doesn’t matter if your photos aren’t tip top David Bailey quality, the point is you have taken that time to take the pictures, download then, edit them, resize them, post them etc.
I aim to put personal photos with nearly every blog post I do, and that’s quite a few. It takes many many many hours to put these together in whatever spare time I have. I have to take most of my pictures with studio lights because I have a full time job in the day and I use the early hours of the morning to catch up with photos.
In an ideal world people should always ask if they can use an image first and generally the answer will be a yes…
But come to think of it, it also depends what you want the photo for. My pictures are for THIS blog and if another source wants to use for NON COMMERCIAL reasons WITH A CREDIT, that is fine.
Asking to use someones images without payment, a decent credit or a link back (whichever you feel comfortable with) is basically asking to take someones work for free.
When it comes to eBay – I have had my photos stolen by sellers lots and lots of times before.
If you want to use my photos for eBay (which I see as commercial) then the answer is no. Besides the fact that people may mistakenly think I am trying to sell samples on eBay, it only takes a few hours to take your own pictures and swatches (seeing as editing and lighting isn’t a huge consideration for auction shots). So do that instead, you lazy gits!
Link backs: Sharing is caring
Methinks someone has a bit to learn about the world wide web, and certainly dealing with bloggers…
I am not sure why this particular site has decided that they “aren’t linking to other sites”, especially ones they are happy to borrow photographs from – so I shan’t speculate.
But the fact is, linking to one another keeps traffic flowing. Wanting lots of people linking in and not linking out is a little bit – what’s the word? Greedy?
And, why would it be ok to put down ‘modelled by cosmetic candy’ but its not ok to change that text into a link?
We all know that people are lazy when browsing the net – they are a lot less likely to remember your name and google it than they are to click on a link.
And at the end of the day, its hardly wise at such an early stage of your business to attempt to be setting these kind of ‘we don’t link out’ rules.
Had they offered me a link back I may have added them to my blogroll with my favourite shops. A quick check on page views tells me that Cosmetic Candy has just over 100 times more page views a month than their site does so can you guess who would be helping out who the most?
**FRESH OF THE PRESS – UPDATE**
After politely explaining my policy, I got this reply
“All the images had “cosmetic-candy.com” clearly written on them, but we will remove them from our site immediately unless we hear back form [sic] you that that [sic] is ok.”
I won’t rush to reply back then.
Kids take note! If someone contacts you from another website, especially a commercial one and wants to use your images without giving you a measly link back to your site, they are not valuing your work. JUST SAY NO!
Ok bored of ranting…
What’s your view on bloggers photographs?
Is it ok to use other people’s shots without asking?
Have you ever had photographs “borrowed” be other people?
Is asking for a link back unreasonable?
Have you eaten all your Easter eggs yet?
Tell me in the comments!
P.S. Speaking of link backs, I am adding beauty bloggers (please bingo/lottery/gambling sites, stop asking) to my blogroll page (which badly badly needs updating!). You can leave me a comment with your blog if you’d like to be added and I would very much appreciate to be added to your blog roll too 😀