Many of you will be aware of the heavy penalties for using a photo owned by someone else without their permission. This is a mistake I see made often in technical PR campaigns, even ones run by professional agencies.

Did you also know that the following can carry heavy fines:

- Photos you have taken that feature clearly identifiable individuals (even in the background)

- Photos featuring public buildings and some landmarks taken from certain locations or angles

- Photos made available for PR campaigns that you re-use for your own purposes

So what do you do if you want to use a lot of photos, say on a daily Blog, and don't really have the budget to pay for them?

Well, my first port of call would be the excellent Free Digital Photos.Net.

This allows you to use the lowest resolution version of its images for free - providing you credit the photographer properly. This is why the photos on this page feature a credit.

Or you could try the Creative Commons sections of FlickrCreative Commons.Org or even SXC, making sure you ask the permission of the photographer first, if that's part of the the terms and conditions of the site.

But remember be certain there's a model release if the photo features people prominently, otherwise you might still get charged.

And never, ever just grab a photo from Google images!

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