Safe Image Search and Proper Attribution

Have you ever heard the phrase, “just because you can doesn’t mean you should”?  This is ever so true on the Internet.  It is so easy to take an image and use it as if you created it.  We must take time to teach proper and safe image search tips as well as proper and legally correct attribution.  I explain this in 3 simple steps!

Image Search TitleStep1FIND IT!  Here are some great sites:


Be sure that you are searching “creative commons” and “not for commercial use”.

1.  Creative Commons Help – enter your search, uncheck “use for commercial purposes” and you decide whether you want images that you can modify.  Then click the search engine button (Flickr, ccMixter, Pixabay for ex).

CreativeCommons Help2.  Compfight Help – put your search in and then it takes you to the page where you can filter down to Creative commons only.

CompFight Help

3. Photo Pin Help – similar to compfight, you enter your search. Then check “Non-Commercial” as your license type.

4. Photos For Class – this one is already set to safely search for images.  In addition, the images are licensed by Creative Commons so you can easily obtain proper attribution information.  This one keeps it very simple!

Step2Check the Copyright Information

In 2 easy steps!

1.  Once you find your picture, find the “rights reserved” link.   Most will look something like this:SomeRightsReservedIf you are using Photopin – Click “Get Photo” and then the photo should link you to the page that has the copyright information on it.  Or, you can copy paste it from the License or HTML attribution box— look for the link.

Also, several of these sites have “sponsored stock” images at the top.  Those are NOT free.  Scroll past them.

2. When you click on the “Some rights reserved” link as shown in the box above, it will take you to an attribution page that was created by creative commons. Click the box above or this link: to see an example.  Notice, it starts with what you CAN do and follows with the terms (which are often to simply give the author/creator proper credit/attribution).

CreativeCommonsRightsReserved PageStep3Give Credit (Attribution) to the Creator!



Give Credit to the creator of the image that you are using! An example of this is to detail that the you did not create the image/work and to give credit to whomever did. You should provide a link back to their page as well.  You also do not want to give the impression that they endorse you or your work.

Some pages will provide the HTML code that you can copy/paste onto your website as attribution.


I popped the code above onto my site so you can see what it looks like!  It is the attribution associated with this beautiful picture.  I read that I can do this but must provide attribution.  Notice, there are 3 links in the photo credit below.  One to the creators’ Flickr website, one to CompFight and one to the Copyright information.  Super Easy!  I also gave credit to my fun fonts that I used to make my banners on this site.


Photo Credit: PeterThoeny via Compfight cc
Font Credit:  Fun Fonts Free from:


One thought on “Safe Image Search and Proper Attribution

  1. Pingback: 04.21.2016 – the Web2.OL Box

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