Advice required on using art and pictures on website

by Andrea21 10 replies
Hi,

I'd like to be able to display some paintings and art on my website. Therefore, can someone please confirm that I can use paintings that I have come across on Wikimedia? I'm referring to old paintings and other images.

Thanks
#main internet marketing discussion forum #advice #art #pictures #required #website
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
    It depends. If they're public domain, yes. I would simply contact the site
    and ask. If they give you permission for certain images or say that all images
    can be used, go ahead.

    I don't think anybody here is going to be able to give you a definitive answer
    to your question as to whether you can use the images or not as we'd only
    be guessing.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnATX
      I always use images and even content from other sites and I will just put the website as the source. This way there is no confusion about who owns the image or content and they get a link back to their site if you're getting traffic.
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      • Profile picture of the author Andrea21
        Hi,

        I'm referring to old paintings that date to around eighteenth and nineteenth century.

        Andrea
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        • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
          Originally Posted by Andrea21 View Post

          Hi,

          I'm referring to old paintings that date to around eighteenth and nineteenth century.

          Andrea
          Technically, they're part of the public domain if they are indeed from that
          era. Problem is, how does one know if a painting is indeed from that era?

          I am no painting expert and with the exception of a few popular ones like
          the "Mona Lisa" I wouldn't know if a painting was really that old. And if you
          republish a painting that isn't from that era, you could open yourself up
          for problems.

          When in doubt, ask somebody who can give you a definitive answer.
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        • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
          Originally Posted by Andrea21 View Post

          I'm referring to old paintings that date to around eighteenth and nineteenth century.
          The images in Wikimedia generally have details included which let you know how you can and cannot use them.

          Most paintings from the 1700's and 1800's (except perhaps for some foreign works in the very late 1800's) are likely to be in the public domain. However, photos of them may or may not be. On the one hand, if the photo is just a straight copy of the original painting and substantial creativity was not used in the creation of the photograph, then it should probably not be subject to copyright protection, as it brings nothing new to the painting. However, photographers may disagree with that and fight it. Then, it would come down to a battle of the lawyers.

          Best thing to do, even if you think the image should be in the public domain, is to ask permission to use it. If the license included with the Wikimedia image says that you can use it for your particular application, then you do not need to ask permission if it is clear that your usage is permissible. If you have any questions regarding your usage, ask before using!

          Also, keep a copy of the license agreement with the image. Keep it on your hard drive, store it on a CD, print it out and stick it in a notebook, whatever. Just keep it on hand in case any question of your usage arises. That way, you have documentation that you did (or reasonably believed) that you had permission to use it.
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        • Profile picture of the author Stephen Saha
          Hi Andrea,

          I use to run a site selling paintings of young artists who were just starting their career. There are some legal bindings which you should settle with the artist before you use their work. Since your paitings are a few centuries old, I'm not sure about the legalities of it. Just make sure if any Gallery, Authority, Collector is the legal owner of it.

          Check this .. it might help ...
          Yahoo! Answers - Oops

          Good luck!

          Stephen
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          • Profile picture of the author Andrea21
            Hi,

            Thanks, I appreciate the advice. What if I want to become an affiliate of a website selling posters. Would it be acceptable to display the posters on my site as long as a I provide a link somewhere to where they can purchase the products?
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            • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
              Originally Posted by Andrea21 View Post

              Thanks, I appreciate the advice. What if I want to become an affiliate of a website selling posters. Would it be acceptable to display the posters on my site as long as a I provide a link somewhere to where they can purchase the products?
              Read the affiliate agreement, and ask if your question isn't answered.
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              Dan's content is irregularly read by handfuls of people. Join the elite few by reading his blog: dcrBlogs.com, following him on Twitter: dcrTweets.com or reading his fiction: dcrWrites.com but NOT by Clicking Here!

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            • Profile picture of the author Sarah Harvey
              Fan-created websites use art from the original source as they please. However they do not claim copyright and state it at the bottom of their web page. That is all you have to do.

              A simple line like this is fine:

              "All licenses, copyright and creative designs are the respective work of their creators and we do not claim ownership or copyright on any the artwork/designs on www.myseite.com."

              Or you can say it more professional like I did with my terms of service:

              "This Web Site is controlled and operated by www.mysite.com (privately) in (list country). All content on this Web Site, including, but not limited to; text, images, illustrations, audio clips, and video clips, is protected by copyrights, trademarks, service marks, and/or other intellectual property rights by their respective owners."
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              "Find the problem and provide the solution."
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  • Profile picture of the author martinkeens
    If the original creator published the work under a common/public license OR if the work is old enough that it is in the public domain, then you are fine. If neither of these are true, then it would depend on the purpose of your site. If it is not-for-profit/reference/educational, then you should be okay as long as you cite your source. If it is a business/profit site, then you could be treading on thin ice if you do not get permission from the original publisher. Just because you find something online does not necessarily mean that you have rights to re-publish it.
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