This article was originally published on July 2, 2019
‘I love my job!’ – oh, we are happy to hear that! No wonder, photography can bring a lot of joy and satisfaction as a profession. Unfortunately, there might be some darker moments when you come across your copyrighted pictures being used without your consent. How to find out if a photo is stolen? Read the next couple of paragraphs and learn some tricks on picture tracking and how to find out if someone is using your work.
It became a common practice to just use images which do not belong to the publishers. Since most of the photographers are busy shooting, they might be oblivious to the growing image theft. Though, there is a couple of ways to easily find out if someone is using your pictures.
We monitor the Internet every single day searching for new copyright infringements while, at the same time, we look for new methods for finding stolen photos. Today, we would like to share with you a simple way to check if your pictures are being used. It should not take long to come across some findings. Then, instead of spending hours doing research, you could sign up with us for free and we will take care of your pictures.
How to find if a picture is stolen?
Alright, let’s get down to the methods of how you can find out if someone is using your pictures. First, scan your portfolio and pick one of your most popular and often shared pictures. Did you get it? Perfect. Then, open your browser and go to images.google.com. Click the camera icon, and either paste in the URL for an image you’ve seen online, upload an image from your hard drive or drag an image from another window. Soon you will see copies of your image. There might also be some similar pictures. You can ignore these and just focus on the ones which were stolen from you!
Take screenshots – you need some proof. Now, you should try to find the infringer’s contact data. Once you click on the image you will get to see who published it. In order to find an image’s address, you should right-click on the picture, then pick the option to ’Copy image address/URL‘. It is not always easy to find the right data. At PhotoClaim, we have a team of imprint experts who will identify even the most well-hidden image thieves.
Another way to look for stolen pictures would be to install specific browser extensions with an image search function. You can find such tools available for different browsers. These will also help you identify stolen photos online.
Should you have doubts about whether the pictures were used illegally? Let’s make it crystal clear – even if the picture was published with your name mentioned, it was not even close to what we could call legal usage. As long as you had no clue about it and did not give your approval for using it, it should not have happened. No matter what arguments the opponents might be using, you should not let them convince you. The law is on your side. Do not be afraid to call a spade a spade and, when you encounter image theft, call them out loud
You may contact the person who stole your pictures directly but make sure you prepare your message properly. If you do not have much experience in writing and negotiations, you could also get in touch with us and we will that care of the next steps for you. Do not worry, we will not take you to court right away to fight for your rights. We try to avoid lawsuits. There are other ways of receiving what you deserve. Experienced in getting back the money from the copyrights for our community of photographers, we would love to welcome you on board.