diberry - 6:01 pm on Oct 2, 2012 (gmt 0)
@Leosghost, what you say about watermarking is true, but the frustration with watermarks is that you have to stick them over a vital part of the photo, or scrapers can just crop off the watermark and use the rest. And if you DO put it over a vital part of the photo, then you're frustrating your users - especially if the photo isn't just decorative, but is part of something like a tutorial or product review where it's important people be able to see the details. Plus, it's just kind of ugly. I wish there was some kind of invisible digital signature that worked like a watermark.
The engines really need to be handling this differently, and I'm honestly not sure how. Is Google going to stop putting pictures in the SERPs? There is a blogger custom of re-posting a single image in a post that pushes visitors to the original site - LifeHacker does this, and they can send you lots of paying traffic. I don't want Google to force me to send LifeHacker and sites like it C&Ds when I really don't mind the photo being reposted in exchange for all that traffic. I just don't want Google somehow deciding I'm not the original copyright holder. This is nuts - why don't they just devalue images? (I'm not even talking about Google image search - I blocked it from indexing my images a long time ago to reduce image theft, ironically. It helps!)
And I'm sorry to ask again, but does anyone know about screengrabs being considered original or not? I see huge sites doing just fine with this practice - Mashable, LifeHacker - but is it really okay or are they just "getting away" with it? It seems to me screengrabs should be considered original.
And what about press release photos? For example, when a company sends a webmaster photos of its latest product in hopes they'll tell readers about it, should they not use those photos? How will Google know they had permission? Anyone can claim "posted with permission..." in the caption.