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GEN: Copyright and Fair Use

Try Google Image Search

Google Images allows you to filter its search results based on usage rights.

After entering your search query, click on the “Search Tools” button and a selection appears for usage rights. Here you can select to filter results by any of the following:

  • Not filtered by license
  • Labeled for reuse with modification
  • Labeled for reuse
  • Labeled for noncommercial reuse with modification
  • Labeled for noncommercial reuse

You're looking for either of the last two options.

Getty Images

Getty Images, a company that sells creative and news stock photography, makes its collection of roughly 35 million images free for editorial, non-commercial use. Images are available through an embed feature — meaning you don’t copy and paste them, you embed their source code. Images on the Getty site now have an embed icon (</>) that you click to get the code. The embed code includes copyright information and a link back to licensing information on the Getty site.

These are great images to use if you don't mind the Getty Images watermark

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons, a database of more than 20 million user-contributed images that are free to copy and use according to the author’s specified license terms (often just requiring credit to the source).

Additional Image Search Engines

Notice the type of license required for use of each work.‚Äč

Flickr: Creative Commons 

Public Domain Pictures

New York Public Library Digital Gallery

Attributing Images

You must attribute all images that you use. Your attribution should include a the title of the work, name of the creator, link to the website where the image is hosted and the type of Creative Commons license applicable to the work. If the creator has requested that they be attributed in a particular way you should try and follow their request.

If you are using the image in print, your attribution should include the text of the URLs. Below are some examples of how to attribute an image.

CH cow 2 by Daniel Schwen (CC BY-SA 3.0), via Wikimedia Commons

CH cow 2 ( by Daniel Schwen (CC BY-SA 3.0)

CH cow 2 © Copyright Daniel Schwen and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons License (

CH cow 2 by Daniel Schwen. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License Schwen, Daniel,

CH cow 2, Licensed under Creative Commons. Downloaded from Wikimedia Commons on 5th January 2010

Adapted, with permission, from the University of Melbourne Copyright Office