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March 6, 2014

Getty Images Opens Its Photo Treasure Chest to Blog Owners

Company Launches Embed Tool for More Than 35M Images

Getty Images screenshot
Getty Images screenshot

After years of charging licensing fees, Getty Images is making a collection of 35 million-plus images free for all to use in a bid to halt rampant online piracy.

Simply put, too many people are filching the company’s massive collection of professional-quality photos for it to sue all who are guilty, so Getty Images has adopted an ‘if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em’ philosophy.

The announcement is not only great news for website and blog owners who simply can’t afford to pay to access the photo service’s images, but for the photographers themselves who can now be assured of receiving credit for their work.

“What we’re trying to do is take a behavior that already exists and enable it legally, then try to get some benefits back to the photographer primarily through attribution and linkage,” Craig Peters, Getty Images senior vice-president of business development, product and content told CNet Australia.

To do just that, the company has launched an embed tool that grants access to tens of millions of the service’s images slated for non-commercial use.

To use the company’s new embed feature, simply click an image’s embed icon (</>) from the search results or image detail page. Copy the embed code that appears in the window and paste it into the source code of the website, social media page or blog where you wish the image to appear.

If, for instance, you chose to use an image of Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, it would appear on your site like this:

The HTML code contains full attribution to the photographer and enables users to click back to Getty Images where they can obtain more information on the picture or license it for commercial purposes.

Peters told CNet Australia the company is looking into “other monetization options” to make up for lost licensing revenue.

“That could be data options, advertising options,” he told the publication. “If you look at what YouTube has done with (its) embed capabilities, (it is) serving ads in conjunction with those videos that are served around the Internet.”

Getty has also updated its terms of service to enable it to drop ads into embedded images without compensating users of the images.


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Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.

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