Next time your Council needs photos for a project or post, check out the nearly 30,000 images which the Library of Congress has released via their Flickr page. The collection is added to constantly, and contains some iconic images like Dorothea Lange’s “Migrant Mother” (above). There are also some great images of Los Angeles, such as the Venice Beach lifeguards circa 1915 shown in the example at the end of this article.
Images in the Library of Congress Flickr collection are listed as having “no known copyright restriction,” so they are free for use and reproduction. Attribution is not required, but it is encouraged, as it’s polite and professional to give photo credits whenever possible.
Having “no known copyright restriction” doesn’t guarantee that an image is in the public domain. Instead, it means that the Library’s researchers haven’t found any evidence of applicable restrictions, after following fairly exhaustive guidelines for making this determination. For example, Lange’s photo above was part of a federal government project, and therefore not subject to copyright restrictions.
So while images with “no known copyright restriction” are probably safe to use, users are reminded to independently research a given image before using it.
For more about usage rights for the Library of Congress Flickr images, see this page. See the Flickr page diagram below, to see where to check copyright info for Flickr images, and where to click to download an image.
Outreach Tip Of The Week is an ongoing series on how to use communications, branding, marketing, and public relations to build better relationships with your stakeholders.