The benefits of getting permission for images on Steemit

in steemit •  2 years ago 

Writing for science can be super boring without pictures, so over the months I've been improving the ways I can legally get hold of images for my posts. I'm not normally one to do things legally, since I'm in China and nobody cares about copyright, but I'm willing to make exceptions for Steemit. And besides, it can be fun.

After mastering the advanced Google searches, I occasionally need something extra special, a niche image that was taken and published in a specific research paper. Rather than liberating it from the hands of the author at will, I've been emailing the individuals and I tend to get a reply back within a few hours, and they are always more than happy to provide permission:

I think this is an attitude that needs to be learned on steemit more than anywhere else, because we're making money off other people's efforts.

In the case of Dr David Gruber here, he goes on diving excursions with specific equipment all over the world (for my last post, the Solomon Islands) to take shots and study his field, with beautiful results, and it's only decent to take 3 minutes out of your time to find their contact info and ask.

There aren't many sentient creatures using Steemit, the vast majority being either bots or weird, exotic individuals who seem to think a good way to earn a livable income is to copy one article and paste it on here. For the rest of us, we really need to fight against that. @steemstem, @curie, @ocd, @steemiteducation and others work hard to push the good users above, and @cheetah, @steemcleaners and others work hard to burn down the thieves, scammers and the rest.

But these are, for the most part, individual people, and there aren't many of us. The only way this site is going to clean up once and for all is by community effort. A simple email or tweet or whatever the young kids do these days is all it takes to fully clean up your posts when a simple credit at the bottom of your page doesn't suffice.

But it's not just about staying legal. You're typically going to be asking somebody for something that you are interested in, a field or hobby that you do yourself. If that's the case, you'll find you're emailing somebody with similar interests to you, and unless they're a celebrity who has not that kind of time, you can build a following of decent, intelligent people.

As you can see, Gruber invites us all in Steem to visit his instagram. In the past, I've been asked to keep the individual up to date on the progress of Steemit, other have asked more about me personally. As they say to people who are unsuccessful after working hard their whole lives; it's not what you know, it's who you know.

So keep that in mind and if we all do our part, Steemit will cease to be the giant Ponzi scheme is it often accused of being, and become a thriving ecosystem that investors actually want to put their money into and support.

Real post coming later today.

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But it's not just about staying legal. You're typically going to be asking somebody for something that you are interested in, a field or hobby that you do yourself. If that's the case, you'll find you're emailing somebody with similar interests to you, and unless they're a celebrity who has not that kind of time, you can build a following of decent, intelligent people.

I love that you reminded us of this notion. Not only would we be doing the right thing, but it is also a very effective way to connect with like-minded people doing amazing stuff. Also, in my experience, science people are usually very open, cooperative and willing to help each other.

Great post, cheers!

Yes! This is so important. I keep (politely) reminding folks that they need to site their sources for info AND for images.

Here's a little tutorial I did on how to use the tools that Google already offers to find LEGAL pics. (It's old- so don't upvote it!)

💥 Game Changer! 💥 How to LEGALLY use Googled images!💥

I've not (yet) needed something so specific that I would need to ask, but have always left that open.

Literally, yesterday one of my hubs posts (@chrisroberts) was phished and copy/pasted and reposted- even with a personal pic of him!
It's all been taken care of, but it IS a bummer when this happens.

I totally believe people can self-govern and really make this an upstanding community of high quality content creators.

Here's another helpful post (also old- don't upvote 😉 ) I made to just help make your posts look sexier, in general... In case any newbies are around.

🌟Pimp Your Post🌟 A Beginner's Guide to making your Steemit posts LOOK AWESOME.

Thank you so much for this! I've resteemed it in hopes others will take a gander.

Woah I love the custom designed pictures you got going on! That must take some time. I can see you going a long way on steemit if you stick to it!

I think the very specific stuff I'm referring to is probably mostly for people using science and tech info. So many just copy recent tech news, the technology feed is disgraceful, the whole feed is lawbreaking and it just makes me sigh...

The phishing thing sucks, I haven't even seen malicious crap on here yet but I've heard so many stories =(

Thanks! They are just from Bitmoji.com. It takes a little time to set up your avatar, but after that it's easy peasy! The site creates the little cartoons with your likeness. I love it!

If you have a second- go make one. 😀

https://www.bitmoji.com/

Then we can ALLLL have little mini-mes!

I really like the angle that actually contacting those people to ask permission has some additional serendipitous benefits.

I'd call this a real post!

Lol! Me too. But I understand what he means...😉

I love luminescence. It sucks I don't use Instagram often but is a great account. I checked it out since I saw it in the chat. This reminds me of when I had to ask authors for access to their papers and index. It was such a pain in the ass. xD

To be honest I don't understand instagram. Nice to look at pictures but... is that it? You just scroll through pictures, occasionally clicking a heart on one and then scroll some more? Not really sure how I could make it part of my life.

A pain in the ass eh? I've found it totally trouble free so far!

Never had troubles. Almost everyone I asked for permission gave it to me and where super kind and helpful. My problem was asking permission for 40 or more sources, especially indexes. It was easily a week of just mails.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Oh yeah if you need to go to that extent lol... good efforts! No wonder your posts are so great

This is awesome - when I use third party photos I always rely on CC or Public Domain images - I've considered going after particularly perfect pictures this way - that is the totally, unequivocally ethical and legal way - but I usually chicken out and take a sub par picture with a preexisting free license rather than one that would - gasp - require actual human contact!

But this is sort of an inspiration and highlights how, especially when it comes to individuals, and i bet small businesses, people are happy to have their images used with attribution and a potential boost of traffic back to them.

I always felt it was important to be above board in posting, and this is about as above the board as you can get. I hope others follow your lead.

Yeah it's nice to know that people aren't as stuck up as we automatically tend to think they are because they copyrighted their stuff. In reality it may be the magazine that they're published in that does it by default, and they're actually cool peeps!

Yeah, if we are using someone's work without permission to earn profit, then it's not at all good.

Just providing a source for an image won't help it. So now-a-days, I am sticking to Google Images with licence for reuse and modification.

And many a time I don't get requisite images for my post, you will help me a lot. Will contact the original image creators for permission to use the image.

Till now I was thinking that we can freely use images from social media sites like Facebook, Instagram etc. Is it also illegal @mobbs?

Till now I was thinking that we can freely use images from social media sites like Facebook, Instagram etc.

That is the million dollar question! This is the grey area I mentioned replying to trumpman. If it's an image that is shared around then it'll generally be fine, but often an image that is shared around wasn't supposed to be, or the original creator really doesn't want it to be. There's close to nothing they can do to stop it, so I wouldn't worry about that - legally, anyway.

And if someone posts a copyright image on a social media site and then someone uses it here on steemit, that will be a confusing problem. Whom to blame?😜

So it's better not to share an image even on a social media site which we don't want to spread. 😂

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I bet a good lawyer can fuck you up even if you use public domain photos XD

But yeah, images from social media sites like Facebook, Instagram do usually have copyrights.

Yeah, but the lawyer will first take action against that stock image site that shared the image. 😂

no, not necessarily. He can take action against whoever used the images. It can be just the stock site, you, or both :)

Yeah, you're right.

nice post
plz follow & upvote my post

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

good post, ideally everybody should do that. I am too lazy, so I just give credit ^_^

Yeah I mean, realistically nobody will do much, much of it being a grey area anyway, but with tens of thousands of users breaking any slight law, all it takes is one lawyer and bam.

I'm not sure it really takes one lawyer actually as so many of the users on here come from so many different jurisdictions. On top of this, the blockchain is distributed and immutable, but the images themselves are not stored on the blockchain. This means that a DCMA notice might make steemit remove specific ones from their servers (if the servers and company are under US jurisdiction which I think they are). But I'm not sure more than that could really be done.

It's not so much a gray area in my opinion, it's just something really hard to litigate and in most of the cases, litigation might even be impossible as the user might be located under a jurisdiction that wouldn't recognize the supposed right-holder as such. On top of this, there are a good deal of accounts that are essentially anonymous which makes it next to impossible to litigate against.

There are literally tons of websites full of copyright-infringing images but not of them have been hit with that and all of them are making money off of those images. That is especially true for social media websites like Facebook and Twitter where anybody can share and upload whatever image they want and the platforms themselves make very little effort to police anything despite the fact that they are the ones charging for ads displayed adjacent to this content.

Of course, morally speaking, I wholeheartedly agree that our usage of images should not be infringing on anybody's rights, I'm just saying that litigation is not what's going to curb the practice. What I think is more likely to make a difference are community efforts to fight against spammers and positive personal example like the one you're setting here.

Yeah you're right, though I wasn't really thinking on an individual level. That being said there was a very notable steemian a month or so ago with a reputation of about 72 who was taken down by a lawyer for basically stealing their articles and translating them on here and making thousands for it.

I was more thinking on a ned level though. Surely a site allowing earning from theft of content can be taken down in the form of, say, piratebay, then I don't see why not steemit?

there was a very notable steemian a month or so ago with a reputation of about 72 who was taken down by a lawyer for basically stealing their articles and translating them on here and making thousands for it

What? Really? I think this disproves my point. I hadn't heard about that. Do you know who was the steemian in question and more details about the story?

Surely a site allowing earning from theft of content can be taken down in the form of, say, piratebay, then I don't see why not steemit?

A single site could be taken down, but the steem blockchain is supposedly much more resultant than that and is theoretically not dependant on a single website. That being said, most if the images we see are hosted on steemit's image servers that have nothing to do with the blockchain and can indeed be taken down. Additionally, steemit having to deal with litigation or even just serious treats of litigation might be enough to send the price of steem plumitting. If steemit is taken down, there would be some (possibly many) users who are never going to come back to the steem blockchain.

I'm now convinced that my initial response was not 100% reasonable...

Probably a combination of both really. The point is we shouldn't contribute to the demise if we can help it! The user, well I'm not sure I'm supposed to say even if I remembered. Begins with R, as far as I recall lol... stupid memory

Hm, I have to research this. This is certainly a notable incident in STEEM history and it might be setting an important precedent. I'm really curious about what exactly unfolded.

Thank you for this explanation. 😀I also always felt like it would be more of a hassle, if not impossible, for someone to actually litigate something like this.

But from a moral standpoint, I definitely prefer the ability to say, "I'm always good. I follow all rules I'm aware of and never steal or lie." 😎

I'm still gonna pretend like there's a possibility of legal action when I tell people why not to steal. Cause, if they have to ask- morals aren't gonna help anyway...😏

There are a few disclaimers that I should have mentioned in my original comment. First if all, I'm by no means an expert, so my opinion should be taken with way more than a grain of salt. Additionally, please notice that I opined that litigation was unlikely, not impossible.

Oh, I read pretty well. 😉 I got all of that from reading it before. I work with lawyers. Nothings impossible.

Improbable, maybe. 🙃

Absolutely makes sense bro, great stuff.
I try to avoid using an image except where it says CC all over, or via google search labeled for reuse.
Asking for permission is fantastic, thumbs up !

Thanks =) Yeah it's not always necessary but so many amateurs don't think twice and it just annoys me. Bleh.

Those are such good points. Thinking about people is what makes your approach so powerful. People connecting with people -- and giving credit where credit is due. It would be nice to see SteemStem give some extra credit for that sort of outreach, even.

Typically the people at steemstem (including me) will notice the extra mile people go through, and we certainly check the 'quality' of sources, so no worries there!

Nice