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Stock Photography



1:23 pm on Jan 15, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I need/want to buy some Stock Photography and am happy with the prices that IStock charge, however I have read about the awful legal problems that people have been having with Getty/Corbis when they used their images without paying for them.

Easy you say - just buy from IStock and you are covered - but is that the case?

I am thinking that IStock/Getty have no way of knowing that the image I have bought from them and used in a website has been paid for - is that correct?

In that case will I get into the legal problems with Getty/Istock even though I have paid for an image?

It soumds like a daft question but how do they know I have paid for the image in the first place?


2:16 pm on Jan 15, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Would you not just produce the reciept you get from Istock or wherever to prove you had paid for it.

We use thousands of images per month and I have never had a problem. I either have reciepts from individual purchases or contracts for bulk use. Though one new and rather keen sales rep did send me a nasty email demanding we pay for images when we had been in cotract with them for over two years. :-)


2:22 pm on Jan 15, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I know, it is just that the threads I was reading on Sitepoint were about the fact that they were refering cases to debt collectors - causing much trouble in the process.

It sounds easy - just buy the images, but I cannot see how they can tell the purchased from the non purchased images.


2:07 pm on Jan 16, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Images can be "watermarked". They are invisibly branded, for example with the name of the website allowed to published them, and that brand is supposed to stick even if the image is quite a bit abused in an image manipulation software. It then can be read with a special software to verify the licence right on your website.

I'm not telling that's what IStock/Getty actually does, but this is a rather common tool in that industry.

You can do a search on "watermark" to learn more about that technique.


11:23 pm on Feb 1, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

It soumds like a daft question but how do they know I have paid for the image in the first place?

They have a global database of millions of images - which they manage with the utmost efficiency. They manage their client lists in exactly the same way - with exactly the same efficiency.

Unless you have obfuscated matters, of course they know whether you've bought an image from them - and that's before the digital image tagging kicks in!



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