Getting more out of Flickr – Part II

As promised in my Part I blog-post about Flickr,  I will dedicate this post about sharing your images, sharing other people’s images and why this could help you getting your blog in the picture without getting all the dramaz and accusations of ‘zOMG my work is stolen!!11!!’ and why you should consider letting others use your stuff.
For starters I will emphasize again I am writing these articles for bloggers, new and old, assuming said bloggers are already (somewhat) familiar with Flickr and use it to upload their imagery.  New bloggers and/or users of Flickr may find this useful as well, and even if you are not a blogger at all, it can be handy to know how rights (creative commons)  and sharing of your work, once uploaded and visible to the public ….works!

 Who, what, why?

It is good to realise many of the Flickr users are not bloggers. To keep it simple there are:

– People who share their daily SL via uploading snapshots directly to Flickr via their viewer
– People who take pics for the fun of it and later upload them, with or without processing
– People who upload post processed work, pics made in SL and edited with Photoshop (or the like) because they enjoy creating art and nice images
– Creators/designers/photographers using Flickr to show off their (new) products, work, without having a blog
– Bloggers without a blog! Huh? Yes, people using Flickr as their blog, with all credits and such in the descriptions of the images
– Bloggers using Flickr to either store the imagery for embedding in their blog and/or publishing them to showcase their work to the rest of the world.

And of course there is the group who fit in all or some of the above and I am sure there are many more reasons to use Flickr for your SL photos. (I will come back to the participation in communities/groups/events/contests and such in a next blog-post!)

So many uploaders, so many many rights and rules…it would make your head spin, right?
Getting back to the topic and theme of this site, supporting SL Bloggers, I will focus on that group (bloggers), to keep things hopefully interesting and short.

There have been,  and still will happen, lots of dramas and cases of which people believed their precious photo/image was ‘stolen’ by someone. Of course, in a real case of theft, that is wrong and a no – go.
However, often this isn’t the actual case and I am going to try to explain why not. This blog-post will contain various screenshots to show some differences.

All rights reserved, so?

First. Flickr by default, when you create your account, sets the right to your work on ‘all rights reserved’. This basically means you have not given anyone permission to use your work in whatever way without your (written) permission. You have ‘all rights’ and if you see someone using it on a site, you indeed have the right to tell them to take it down.
I often use, in my blog, pictures of other people. Even ones with ‘all rights reserved’ and yet, I do it in a totally legal way, simply by using the options Flickr gives me with the ‘sharing’ menu.  I respect the ‘all rights reserved’ and never ‘steal’ images.
It is all a matter of how the owner of said images has their settings for sharing enabled or disabled. See screenshot here, of my personal settings, as you see I have ‘ enabled’ the options for others to share my work via social media.


This does not mean they can do whatever they please with my images, for that I have (per image) defined the rights as I see fit according to the common licences. Yet, even a ‘all rights reserved’ picture by me on Flickr, can be shared – ’embedded’ in someone’s blog, on someones facebook, twitter – without legal issues.
The trick is: they can only share the original and it will ALWAYS link back to the image on Flickr. They do not download it first and then edit it and play with it and then blog it…no, they ’embed’ the original one in their blog and when their readers click on the image, it will bring them to MY original on Flickr.
No stealing, no theft, no infringement, no dramaz!


Nope. No sharing! You can only use a link, that’s all!


Some rights reserved, check if you want, but go ahead using the sharing options for embedding!

Why being a bit easier on the sharing?

Why am I so easy in letting others share my imagery on their blog/facebook/twitter?
Because:  publicity.

Also because: it is SL. It is, in my case, not RL art I have worked my ass off for. I make pictures in SL that I want to show off and share. The more it is shared, the bigger I smile. Simples!

So I willingly and knowingly give my images out for sharing. If you are particularly attached to your work, you can disable all this and nobody will be able to share your work but you.

In cases of photographers and artists in SL it makes sense, they may have their reasons to prevent it, but in case of bloggers…why? You want to show off, right?  Anyway, personal decision and I cannot tell you what is best for you. But give it some thought, specially since you can choose the options per photo you upload!
It is quite easy to see if you can ‘use’ ( I do not like the word use for sharing someones work) a picture on Flickr, via the ‘share’ menu. It will tell you exactly what you can and can not do with an image.
In some cases a picture cannot be shared at all, that is either because the owner has disabled all options OR: because the image is rated as Moderate or Restricted. Restricted (adult) images are by default not possible to share via blogs/facebook and such – so this is disabled by Flickr the moment an image has the safety filter on restricted.
Also. Don’t be an asshole and screenshot, download or snippet a protected image for use…THAT is considered stealing and it is bad form and not helping your reputation as a blogger.

Respect the options and use them accordingly and be polite, even if you do not have to, it never hurts to inform the owner of an image that you have linked to their work in your blog. In case you get a negative reaction and they tell you it was a mistake to have options open and ask you to remove it: remove it without discussion.
This goes both ways. If you see someone has shared your image in their blog, because you have the sharing options enabled and they use it the proper way: be proud! It is a perfect way to get your images to another audience and admit it:  it is cool someone thought your work was so good they displayed it on their site!

An example of an event-blogsite that embedded my Flickr images, just because they could due to my settings here. And an example of me embedding a picture by someone else in my blog here.
Which leads me to my final words of this long post: just don’t be afraid to share images of others on your blog. It can be a great way to deal with  the ‘bloggers block‘ as covered by Kitty, a way to show the same stuff but by different people and believe me: people will return the favour if they can. (example: ever considered embedding an awesome landscape-pic in your fashion blog-post, made by someone else of the location you took your pics? Just an idea….)


Oh! All rights reserved, and no embedding but hey, sharing via FB and Twitter can!

Just be aware of the rights, don’t just download but only use the buttons that are available and do tell the owner, just because it is the polite thing to do.
Last but certainly not least, I will suggest you read the official website on creative common licenses, which explains how and what all the terms mean of the options about rights on your images:

My next post will be about groups, communities, captions and blocking.
For now : happy snapping and uploading!


8 Comments on “Getting more out of Flickr – Part II

  1. Awesome! A very good post Cait, well reasoned and comprehensive! And, this bit: “a ‘all rights reserved’ picture by me on Flickr, can be shared – ‘embedded’ in someone’s blog, on someones facebook, twitter – without legal issues.” via shared embedding…. brilliant!! Now I realise I’ve been much too conservative in interpreting “All Rights Reserved” as “Don’t share my stuff!!!” That one little nugget has the potential to save enormous amounts of time (by for example painstakingly reproducing a high quality image of a landscape when a perfectly good image already exists) and create an opportunity to complement one’s own blogging by featuring the work of talented photographers you admire, while sharing some nice publicity for them. Great tip 🙂

    • Thank you Becky and glad it helped! Yes, the ‘all rights reserved’ does give the impression one cannot ‘use’ the image, and that is of course in some way the case, as it is meant to protect it from being used as: editted, downloaded, used for commercial or other purposes and so on. The sharing via the buttons in Flickr, thus NOT touching the original but just showcasing it in all its glory is perfectly safe – and as said: if the owner of an image does not want that, they simple do not enable the options. As long as you just use the proper way, via the ‘official’ buttons, and not try to fiddle around it (in some cases one just has to accept an image is not ‘sharable’), even ‘all rights reserved’ images can be displayed on your blog etc.

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