Keep an eye out for your images being used illegally

© Bowie15 ( Help)

I have today carried out a search of my images using Google's image search.

Found lots being used with watermarks and subsequently used DT's "report misuse" tab in the management area, you should do the same if you find infringements.

One blogger responded me today, apparently she's an author... here's her response:

"I pull all my photos from the photosite Dreamstime. On each photo there is an option, "click for comp image." I apologize if this is upsetting but your issue should be with Dreamstime, not with me. They are the ones who do not require me to purchase the image. I am just a small-time blogger. I use their site because I cannot afford to purchase photos each time I blog. Peace."

Well this is what we have to contend with as contributors, keep your eyes peeled and notify DT if you find your watermarked images out there.


Your article must be written in English

July 12, 2013


Thanks for sharing.

October 03, 2012


i find this whole thing confusing. I am a buyer and new to the site, I cant understand all the lingo, I had to call the support team to find out if images can be used to sell, (as in card making). The site needs to make this very, very clear, royality free to me means - go ahead and use as you please. Unfortunetly, that is not the case. Ignorance is not an excuse, I had to call and make sure I wasnt using images illegally. Most people wouldnt go thru the trouble.

September 26, 2012


Its really upsetting, but I believe water mark should include a sample, not for publication title. what do you think?

Hafakot: I agree !! I reported to DT (and provided the link) about someone on the website where you do stuff for 5 bucks advertising that he can get any 5 or so stock photos, any resolution for only 5 dollars and he mentions Dreamstime specifically as one of the sites he can obtain these from. There is no way he is authorized to resell them, but his gig is still on after a month so i guess he is there to stay ??

Maybe if the watermark said "Turn this criminal in and receive a monetary reward if they are successfully prosecuted" there'd be no thiefs left :)

September 26, 2012


Brett, you should point out to her the following point from terms of use for comp images:
"You may not use a Watermarked Image in any final materials distributed within your company or any materials distributed outside of your company or to the public or in any online or other electronic distribution system

September 26, 2012


Another reply from DMCA notification issued to a website using one of my watermarked images.

"Dear Sir or Madam:

Many thanks for your message. We appreciate the ability to use the picture, and understood that its use is “royalty free.” Please kindly let me know if we can continue to use it royalty free; if not, we will be happy to take it down.

Thank you,"

Guessing has no idea about RF licenses.

September 25, 2012



September 25, 2012


Google's reverse image search is at simply have your sales or portfolio open in one window, google image search open in another and simply drag and drop your images into the search bar and Google will check to see where your image appears on the net. You can of course just search your user name and dreamstime in the regular search engine, this often finds other results to.

September 25, 2012


I really find her response to be curt and rude. Unfortunately, a lot of people out there don't believe in paying you for your work. I wonder how she would feel if someone plagiarized her words.

Anyway, off topic, I remember there is a site where you can look and see how and where your images are being used. It would be useful if you could provide that.

September 25, 2012


So what does this' click for comp' message actually mean?

September 25, 2012


I agree with Bradcalkins and a good solution is suggested by Hafakot...

September 24, 2012


Those people who downloaded free images could have at least asked or inform the photographer for permission to use, or credit by linking to the photographer's site here at DT. Its simple as scratching one another's back. As for Vilaimages' comment on right clicking, well i guess the printscreen button function on the keyboard can be used for image theft anyway.

September 24, 2012


I have found some of my images used with DT watermark, unfortunaly I haven't been able to report those sites to DT for not having an email account available. So I have tried to contact them writing in any space available that the image is used without permition and some have remove the images but some haven't. Thanks for the advise that's to bad.

September 24, 2012


I found on some websites (sorry, I can't remember which ones) that when you right click on an image, a sign comes saying that the image cannot be copied. Maybe something like this could be implemented on DT?

September 24, 2012


It's really upsetting, but I believe water mark should include a "sample, not for publication" title. what do you think?

September 24, 2012


Life's too short for worrying about this kind of thing because it's gonna happen anyway

September 24, 2012


Having "free" in the title of anything you have to pay for must be confusing also for many.

September 24, 2012


Hmm. I just clicked on a comp image and the Terms of Use takes you to the following statement: The high-resolution images that you download under the regular Royalty Free (RF) license may be used to make fine art prints, on a web site, in a magazine, newspaper, book or booklet, book cover, flyer, application software (apps) or any other advertising and promotional material, in either printed or electronic media, as long as the item in which the image appears does not contradict any of the restrictions below..

And it is followed up on the page by: ...we suggest you to secure its license by downloading it as soon as possible...

As contributors we all know that that securing the license by downloading means BUYING the image - but I would hardly say it is obvious. It doesn't actually say anywhere that you must pay for or buy the license to use the image! If you weren't part of this industry how obvious would it be to you what a 'comp' image was, or the term RF license?...

September 24, 2012


Yeah, i'm waiting to hear back on one that i found. It was from (i think) a russian site, so i'm not holding out too much hope.

September 24, 2012


Light image dowloaders can opt for the 8-credit purchase limit. Amounts to about USD$11/-. More so if the bloggers are earning off their blogging too. At least some encouragement for photographers and contributors to keep working and uploading images.

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Photo credits: Bowie15.