Keeping your Facebook profile interesting so that your friends comment or like your status can be difficult, but stock photos are a great way to keep your friends up to date, and interested and will increase participation on your Facebook wall. If you need photos for your Facebook wall, understand first what type of stock photos you can use and how you can use them.
Facebook has a lot of policies, but photo use is not yet included in the dos and don'ts of Facebook posting. If anything, Facebook is increasing their user’s ability to post photos, videos and images to increase the instances of a like or comment. This lack of a Facebook policy does not provide users, both Facebook profiles and Facebook pages, with the carte blanche right to photo content. Facebook is a social network where people can download photos, use your photos and Facebook stores photos forever. These very freedoms are what make putting stock photos on your Facebook wall an item that needs to be strategically done.
Google Images is thought to be a great way to get free photos and post in your Facebook status update. If the post says ‘I am feeling blue’ you will find a Google image that can reflect that status update. Your right to use that image on Facebook is not supported. Copyright laws exist to protect the artist or photographer from use of their image. With over 5,000,000 users on Facebook, and the ability for a good post and photo to go viral, using a Google image on your Facebook wall will open you to personal risk.
- As a general rule, do not use face shots, people photos or full body shots purchased from stock photography as this can be interpreted as a personal photo.
- Do a unique search on the Stock photography sites so that you do not choose a popular stock photo. You want your Facebook page to be unique. Find a unique photo.
- Credit, Credit credit…if you credit the artist and build a link to their fan page or Facebook profile, you will be doing them a great service. Contacting the photographer through a personal message could also build a great relationship between you and the photographer. Friend them, like them and give them a shout-out.
- Remove the created image (invite, poster or brochure) from your album after 5 to 6 months. People forget that photos remain on your page and can be removed in seconds. Build a schedule to remove the image from your Facebook photo album.
- Let your friends and fans know where you purchased the stock photography. Free advertising for the company that supplies stock photography is another way to credit an image. The photo labeling options on Facebook are the best way to show where you purchased the initial stock photography.
Stock Photography can be use on your Facebook wall with a clear understanding of stock photography agency agreements is important. Applying these terms to the area of social network platforms, Facebook, Twitter or Flickr, is important. Once a user understands these conditions, using stock photography on Facebook is easy.
Stock photography agreements clearly state the following:
- Images can not be used in a manner that “is considered pornographic, obscene, immoral, infringing, defamatory or libelous in nature.”
- Images cannot be used in unsolicited email – or linked from unsolicited email
- Images can not reproduced or used more than the agency agreement outlines
- Single Images or photos can not be shared on disk drives, computer networks, intranets of any nature or otherwise with the purpose to repeatedly use the image.
- Images can not be for download on a website, posted for sale, or be included for templates of any nature, including templates for websites, social networking websites (e.g., MySpace.com, Facebook, etc.) documents, projects or otherwise for distribution and/or sale to third parties.
- Use or display an Image in such a manner that gives the impression that the Image was created by you or a person other than the copyright holder of that Image
- Stockpile, download, or otherwise store images not used within six (6) months of the expiration of the subscription can not be used.
Knowing how stock photos can be used when you need to put a photo on your Facebook wall can save you time and increase the instances of a like or comment.
- Build an announcement. Stock photography can be used for fun announcements. If combined with information, or a statement where the image cannot be interpreted as a personal photo, stock photography can be a great way to create interesting photos that you can post on your Facebook wall.
- Invite your friends to a party. Event invitations sent using the event option on Facebook will not breach stock photography conditions. Whether it is a personal or business invite, integrating stock photography into an invitation falls within the legal uses of stock images.
- Add a cartoon image to the stock photo. Adding cartoon images or enhancements to a stock photo will let people know that the stock photo is not yours. Use of model faces or full body photos is not advised.
- Credit the artist or photographer in your photo album. As a courtesy and for your own protection, this is the best way to show that you are not the owner of the photo.
- Use on custom-built Facebook pages. Custom pages on Facebook are a wonderful addition to the creativity of your personal or business Facebook page. Use of stock photos is allowed as this is considered publicity. Change up the images used on the pages every 5 months. This will re-invent the look of your custom page and stay within the legal uses of stock photography.
Stock photography can legally and successfully be used on your Facebook wall if the terms of service are respected. The guidelines above are some ways to use stock photography. Personal photos are a useful way to post updates to Facebook friends, but stock photography can increase instances of a comment or like, and manage an ever-changing face book wall.
Image © PictureLake / iStockphoto – Editorial License