I share all my flickr photos freely under a Creative Commons attribution-only license. If you don’t know what this means I’ll sum it up for you: You can’t steal my photos because I am already willing to share them with you. Do what you want with them. All I ask is that you give me credit if you use them. I guess I’ll never know if you don’t comply, but why not play nice? The terms are really simple. Just mention my Flickr username, caswell_tom. Give credit where credit is due.
I have a Google Alert set up to alert me anytime the words “caswell_tom” and “flickr” appear on the web together. You may need to adjust this to fit your own situation. I added the word “flickr” to my username to filter out all the unrelated alerts I was getting. I had to add the work When I get a Google Alert email letting me know one of my photos has been reused, I add a link to the place it got used in the comment section of that picture. I also add the “reused” tag to that photo in Flickr. It’s an easy way to keep track of my reused photo collection.
It’s fun to see how my amateur snapshots get reused. I feel like a proud parent, seeing my photos accomplish new and interesting things. I guess you could say I collect reuse. Of course, you have to tag your photo with useful keywords so other can find them. That’s the trick behind the magic of reuse.
You might wonder why I share my photos, blog posts, and other creative works so freely. Well, why not? The worst that can happen is nothing (which is exactly what would happen anyway if I kept them to myself). The best case scenario is that someone else gets to do something interesting with my photo and I get credit for the original photo. Who knows?