How to Deal with Stolen Images on the Internet?
In this web world, there is not even a single niche in which content is not available. Whether it’s social networking platforms or different kinds of websites, you will find content everywhere. Among multiple forms of content, images are the most popular type, as people admire them more than text. Even though the popularity of videos cannot be ignored, the images are more popular than them as well. Whether you access a website or social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter, images can be found every place.
This popularity of images has given a huge rise to people interested in clicking photographs and creating their own illustrations through graphic design software programs. These people share their images with the world to gain popularity and create an audience. However, they face backlash from copycats who steal their images and use them for their own benefits. It often hurts the credibility of content creators, as these thieves take all the credit for their hard work. So how can you deal with stolen images on the internet? Is there any way you can avoid this nuisance? If you are searching for the answers to these queries, then you are at the right spot. In this blog, we will let you know about the best ways to deal with stolen images on the internet. But before that, let’s look into how you can figure out whether someone has stolen your images. So let’s get started without any further ado!
How to Find Who Has Stolen Your Images?
Before you start taking action against the people who have stolen your images, you must know how to find them first. As we all know that there are billions of web pages over the web; hence, it won’t be possible for you to make a normal search on Google and expect to see all the sites that contain your images. For this reason, we recommend you get your hands on a reverse image search facility. The reverse photo search asks you to search by image, and in response, it retrieves similar picture results. With this online utility, you can easily come across all the pages that contain similar images and so you can find which sources are using your images without your permission and then move towards taking the necessary steps against them.
What Actions Can Be Taken Against Image Theft?
Below we have listed some necessary actions that you can take after identifying who is using your images.
Contact the Webmaster
As you will come across the websites that have uploaded your images without seeking your consent or providing credits through the reverse image search, you must start by contacting the webmaster. You can ask the site owner gently to remove the images that belong to you and put your case that the images they are using cannot be used without your permission. Every website has a contact us form that you can utilize to reach them out. If there are no contact details given on the site, you can utilize the information available with the whois domain utility that provides the data of the domain’s owner. In case this way also fails to reach out to the webmaster, you can use a DMCA takedown request. This request will allow you to directly inform the search engine about your image theft. If it gets approved, the search engines will take necessary actions against such a site and charge it with heavy penalties.
Report Content on Social Media Platforms
Several times, you may come across your images being used without your permission on social media platforms. In this scenario, you can simply report the picture and provide valuable details to the social networking site you’re reporting on about the image theft. If you manage to satisfy the social platforms with your claims, the image will be taken down from the page or profile it is uploaded on immediately.
Take the Matter to Court
If you have protected your images with copyrights and you can prove that you have the sole ownership of the images, then you can take the matter of image theft to court by filing a proper lawsuit. To do so, you’ll need to get the expertise of a professional lawyer who is an expert in dealing with such kinds of issues. By filing such a case, you can get paid for the damages you have suffered from the theft of your images. However, this process can last longer, and you may have to bear an ample amount of litigation costs. If the other party is strong and comes up with stronger claims as to their evidence, then you can suffer a loss. Therefore, this way of dealing with image theft should be the last option to rely on.
Finding the images that have been stolen by others has become easier due to the availability of reverse image search facilities. You must take mandatory steps against such an act to get the pictures removed from the places where they have been posted without your consent.