Getty images allowing photo sharing

I just saw this article about Getty images opening up use of their photos for social media. My first thought was that this is fantastic news. It’s great to have a source of images you can use without worrying about copyright. Its sharing software will even embed the photo credits. But then I saw this:

“According to Getty’s terms, the agency or a party on its behalf may one day collect data related to the use of its embedded viewer and content. It may also one day place advertisements within or use another way to make money off the service.”

Now I’m suspicious. It’s not that I don’t think they should make money off their own images, but if I used their images in a blog post and then in two weeks those images turned into fast food advertising, I would not be impressed. It’s not like they are running out of funds, the company was worth 3.3 billion last year.

It’s also interesting to see how other news agencies interpret this move. Just look at the titles of these articles from yesterday:

Since It Can’t Sue Us All, Getty Images Embraces Embedded Photos

Getty Images makes 35 million images free in fight against copyright infringement

Certainly a different spin in each of these articles.

I’m curious to see what the implications of this will be in the long run.