Getty Images, the world’s largest photo agency, has made millions of photographs from its library free to use. This is good news for bloggers but many photojournalists are concerned.

According to the BBC, Getty Images has opened up its archives in order to combat piracy. Apparently thousands of Getty Images are being used without attribution.

The change in policy means that millions of images will now be available without cost to blogs and social media sites. The images which are now free to use include shots of Marilyn Monroe and Barack Obama. The only caveat is that the photos will be “framed” with a code that links back to Getty’s website.

CNET explains how the use of the images will work: “The image provider has launched an Embed tool that allows people to use more than 35 million of the service’s portfolio of images for noncommercial purposes. Using the same iFrame code that lets users embed YouTube videos, Flickr photos, and tweets, Getty’s tool generates an HTML code that contains appropriate attribution that can be embedded in a blog or social media post. ”


Getty Images, Inc. is a U.S. based stock photo agency, based in Seattle, Washington. It is a supplier of stock images for business and consumers with an archive of 80 million still images and illustrations and more than 50,000 hours of stock film footage.

Not everyone is in support of the change. Writing for the British Journal of Photography, Olivier Laurent notes the impact on photojournalists. “The controversial move is set to draw professional photographers’ ire at a time when the stock photography market is marred by low prices and under attack from new mobile photography players. ”

source: digitaljournal