How Using the Wrong Photo Can Put You Out of Business

July 26, 2021

Back in January of 2019 I wrote about how careful you need to be regarding every single image that you use for your business or non-profit. A single slip up — using an image you don't have the legal right to use, or not attributing it exactly as the photographer requested — can get you fined up to $150,000 per image.

The fact that some people take photographs on purpose and place them on websites like Wikimedia in order to lure the clueless into mis-using the photos, seems to warrant the popular term "troll."

If you're new to the troll racket then take 3 minutes to read this recent Bloomberg piece.

Then do a serious re-think of who has access to post on your website. As I wrote back in 2019:

How many employees at your non-profit or small business have login credentials for your website and are allowed to publish news, updates, or blog posts? More to the point, how do you decide such matters? . . .

By giving website access to employees (and/or volunteers) before there's a system of checks for image use (and other content liability issues), you’re saying “goodbye” to risk management opportunities. You’re green-lighting a free-for-all and abdicating responsibility for the results.

Note: Much of the trolling previously reported on has been done en masse by law firms using technology to trace and identify inappropriate use of images, music, and other content. Target usage may be on websites or in social media. The firms in these cases don't own the content, but do initiate the complaints.

Using Copyrighted Images Online - What You Don't Know Can Hurt You - SignalFox

Beware of the Trolls: Recent Uptick in Copyright Trolling and What You Should Do — Heidi Crikelair and David Perry of Blank Rome LLC.