MYTH BUSTED! Paid images online are safe.

MYTH BUSTED! Paid images online are safe.

The legal myth we are busting today, is that you paid to use an image online and therefore you are safe from a demand for copyright infringement. I’m talking about if you’ve

used a stock image site, you’ve paid for it, and you’ve popped it up on your website

and you believe there’s no way you will ever get a notice of infringement. 

Well, I have bad news for you on two counts, firstly, these stock sites don’t always keep records of who paid for what, when. So even if you have a copy of your receipt or the license agreement and you can show that when you paid, you paid for that particular image, you could still be in trouble. But the good news is, if you have paid for an image and you’ve got a receipt for paying for an image where you’ve still got access to the stock image site, you can go on there and can download it. Normally it gives you a list of the images that you’ve downloaded, and then if you receive a letter of demand you can simply send that information off to them. 

So it’s very important to keep records of where you downloaded your images from. So that’s the first thing, not keeping the information or the records. The second thing is that sometimes the stock image sites get it wrong. So you might have bought it from one site and now you’ve got a different site claiming that they own it and wanting to come after you for copyright infringement. There was a rather delicious court case that happened in America where Getty Images, whose kind of a nemesis, they own a lot of images and they enforce copyright a lot, so people get a little bit aggravated with them because they really go after people. Some people think it’s part of their revenue rating model, to go after people. 

They’ve got little computerized bots, so I was told by one of their debt collectors, which actually scour the internet for infringements. Anyway, Getty sued somebody for copyright infringement of an image in America and it turned out that the person they sued, was the photographer.

Who took that photograph and who owned copyright in that photograph herself and she had never, ever permitted anyone, ever, anywhere, to use it. So not only was

Getty suing her falsely for copyright infringement because they had no right to

license the image, she then sued them back for damages because she owned the image

that they were licensing to other people and they were going after other people for using. 

So beware, the myth that just because you pay to use an image, means it’s safe isn’t always the case. If you have received a letter of demand, I have actually got a free online course for you which tells you step-by-step how to minimize your risk and minimize your damages. If you hop onto and you look for the link for online courses, you’ll be able to find it. It’s the one about defeating Getty Image’s claims.

It has been amazing busting legal myths with you to protect your business so that you can live the lifestyle that you deserve. My name is Cathryn Warburton, I am the Legal Lioness. If you would like to know more about legal myths and the busting thereof, please pop onto my website,

Cathryn Warburton About the author

The Legal Lioness. Overcoming severe bullying as a child instilled in her a passion to protect others. As a skilled litigator, she indulges in her dream to push-back against business-bullies who target her clients. She is an international award-winning lawyer and patent attorney and 5-time published author. Cathryn bullet-proofs her client’s businesses and protects them like a mama lioness protecting her cubs. She makes sure that no business is left without access to affordable, easy-to-understand legal information. She does this through her books, proactive legal workshops and 1-2-1 legal services.