Is It Ethical To Use Free Stock Photos On Your Website

One can find lots of photos on the internet but not every image that you see can be used freely for personal use. The stock images can be used by anyone, for any number of times, be it for personal use or for commercial uses. You don’t have to pay anything for using those images legally.

On the other hand, you cannot use the rights managed photography or the images with copyrights. Even if you do so unknowingly, you could face legal charges. The image copyrights owners have all the rights to sue you for using their images, without getting the permission from them. In this post, we shall discuss more about licensing for different types of images

Images for Non-commercial Use

You can use the royalty free stock photography in any form, as long as they do not yield you any revenues. It means that you cannot use them on commercial advertisements. If the aim of website is to make money, then it will be considered as commercial use. But if your website is for pleasure and not created with an intention to make financial earnings from it then you can easily use free stock photos with a “non-commercial only license”.

Images for use of Commercial Websites or Business

When an image photographer has granted a license on his free image to be allowed for commercial use, then you can easily apply the image on your blog, business website, etc. Images with permission of “personal-use only” can be used for personal reasons. If you wish to use them for any commercial requirements, then you will first need to get the permission from the image owner. Some owners might even ask you to specify the earnings that you can make with their free non-commercial photo. If you have earned more than the limit set by the owner, then you will have to buy the license for that photo.

Derivative Use

Free image owners restrict you to employ their creation and create your personal derivative images. Derived works involves pictures like backgrounds or textures that are used to create a three dimensional world or a background in a moving picture. There is one immensely popular “Creative commons” license that permits derived works of the images. In such images a “No-Derives” clause is deleted.


For many of the free stock photos, the permission to distribute images is never granted to anybody who is using the image. Sending an image to any other person, in any digital media, print media, or on a CD is considered to be an act of distribution. A free clipart when used in preparation of a report or a power-point presentation is considered to be an act of distribution by providing it to your clients to use it in creation of their presentation.


SuperStock is a reputed company that offers a wide collection of free of royalty stock photos in affordable rates to its clients grab the attention of their website readers. This way not only their business earnings and profits are increased but also contributes towards developing a lasting impression of your website on the minds of people.