11 March 2014

Getty Chess Images

Sounds good, doesn't it: Getty gives away 35 million images for free [csmonitor.com].

Image-hosting giant Getty Images announced it won't fight a legal battle with the millions of bloggers who use its images without attribution everyday. Instead, it is offering images for free in hopes that embedded advertisements and linked-back attribution will provide revenue in the future

Sounds good, that is, until you try it. I had access to Getty Images when I was with About.com and the word that best sums up the experience is 'disappointing'. NEW: Embed lets you share tens of millions of images [gettyimages.com]. Here's an example; click the photo to find out more about it (you might have to hunt with your mouse for a clickable area).

It's hard to imagine a service less friendly than Getty Images. Although their image search promises to restrict results to images you are allowed to embed, I'd say less than one in ten can be used that way. Most of the chess images that can be used are stock photos that look like they were originally taken for a Human Resources ad campaign. There is nothing timely, nothing newsworthy, and very little that is even interesting.

Note how my example is truncated to the right? There is nothing in the embed tool that allows me to fit a photo to the size of my page. I'm certain that if I were to adjust the WIDTH and HEIGHT attributes myself, I would run afoul of Getty's terms and conditions.

I'll stick to Flickr and Picasa. They run services that understand the web.

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