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Avoiding infringing images in your blog articles

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Picture this- you write a great blog post and add a compelling image and then you get an email that you are in copyright infringement!

As an early blogger I knew I needed to add a picture to my blog posts, but I faltered a bit with WHERE those pictures should come from. After realizing that several of the graphics I used could get me into copyright infringement trouble, I started to ask around Twitter for some advice. I quickly discovered that it wasn’t easy to find reliable, safe and FREE sources for graphics and pictures.

Over the years I have turned to two main resources that I wanted to share with you so that you can save searching time and aggravation and get straight to the writing! Be sure to watch the video for the full demonstration.

#1- Flickr. Hands down my favorite place for photo sharing and networking. This site has a social network connected with it and is a wonderful site. That said, if you simply type your search word into the home page and click “search” you are going to find content that you shouldn’t be using because it is protected. By using the advanced search from the search drop down and clicking on “creative commons” content, you will find photos that you can safely add to your blog post.

#2- Stock.xchng. At first glance it seems that you have to pay for these images, but if you dig a bit deeper there are two tiers of content. After performing your search you will see “premium” results (which cost money) and below that are the free images.

Remember that regardless of the fact that these pictures and images are safe to use, it is good manners and common courtesy to give credit to the photographer/artist by including a credit line and link back to the original image.

These are my two favorites, but I know there are a lot of other options out there. Let’s use this post as a pool of shared knowledge. Where do you find your photos and images for blog posts?

CC Licensed image courtesy of liako on Flickr.com.

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23 Comments

23 Comments

  1. Sonja Lovas

    July 9, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    Well said. I am a big contributor to Flickr myself and would welcome anyone wanting to use my photos, and as mentioned, appreciate the attribution. As I make my list of future blog topics I also try to find photos and while I am out and about, I look for opportunities that will enhance my blog post. Failing that, I also turn to the stock and royalty free photos from I stock photos and also Fololia because I don’t mind paying for the small jpeg image if it is a perfect photo fit. Everyone says a picture tells a thousand words, and it is true in capturing the topic for your blogs.

    • Lesley Lambert

      July 9, 2010 at 12:58 pm

      Great suggestions, thank you for adding to the discussion! I have been actively trying to capture my own images, as well.

  2. Bryan Thompson

    July 9, 2010 at 4:28 pm

    Leslie, I’m glad others have seen the light on Stock.xchng. I have gotten several of my graphic designer friends hooked on it after years of them paying for iStockphoto and other paid sources. Granted, Stock.xchng is often more limited with quality searches than its istockphoto counterpart, but beggars can’t be choosers, right?

    I did not know Flickr was a royalty-free zone (or part of it anyway), and I’ve had a Flickr account for years. Never occurred to me to check there. Thanks for the heads-up!

    One royalty-free source I used in college was alltheweb.com. Most of the images are pretty useless and a lot of them are just glorified Microsoft Clip Art, but occasionally you’ll find a jewel or two in there. Thanks again for the tips.

  3. David Hutnik

    July 9, 2010 at 11:22 pm

    I have been blogging for a couple of years and almost always just done Google Image search. I never really thought much of it…

    Great blog, (shared on both Facebook and Twitter). I will be bookmarking these sites and subscribing to your blog.. Thanks for the great resources!

    • LesleyLambert

      July 11, 2010 at 9:53 pm

      So glad I could help! I think a lot of us went with the Google search before we realized better!

  4. Kristal Kraft

    July 15, 2010 at 9:34 am

    Good suggestions here! I wanted to mention that many professional photographers are now using Digamark to tag their photos. It’s a service that also tracks Copyrighted photos. People who are unfortunate enough to snitch them will find themselves negotiating down the settlement demanded (rightfully so) by the photog’s attorney.

    An associate of mine is going through this now. It’s going to end up costing her $1,000’s of dollars! So just beware, a photo is not required to have a © on it to qualify. It’s owned by the maker, pure and simple.

    So when in doubt, don’t use the photo.

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Austin

Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?

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Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, SelfStorage.com dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.

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aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.

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Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub, Realtor.com, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also Realtor.com’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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