I found it on the Internet! Can I use it?

The answer is only MAYBE!

There are sources for images that are either in the pubic domain or provided by their owners for free. However, many of the images that you will see under various headings are copyrighted images. Just as you own the copyright to the work you created, they too own the copyright to the image they have displayed on the internet. No one may copy what you have created without your permission. This is also true for everything that other people create.

If someone else owns the copyright, you must negotiate with them for permission to use the image in your publication. Some sources will sell you permission to use their images royalty-free, but not with exclusive rights to their images. Others will sell permission to use for limited purposes and still others will sell you exclusive rights to a particular image.

Before you use an image you downloaded from the internet:

    • Find out who owns it, get or buy permission from them to use the image in an item for sale, and keep the information about the permission in your files.


  • Find verification that the image is in the public domain and free to use. Print out that information and keep it in your files, and send us a copy.