Photographs and video are a great way to add a personal touch to your website. Whether you want to recap an exciting event or just share how you see the world around you, photographs and videos make a very visual point. However, just like anything else, there are some guidelines you should follow to keep yourself and those around you safe.
Always get permission before sharing someone’s photo online. Not everyone likes to have their picture on display for various reasons. With some people it’s a matter of preference, but for some it really is a matter of safety.
Use Care with Minors
Use extra care when using pictures of minors. There are several things to consider before using a child’s picture online.
- Would parents be okay with me using this picture on my website? Don’t just guess–actually ask!
- When this child is a teenager, or even an adult, will they be upset that I shared this picture?
- Your child is a precious gift given to you. How much of your child are you willing to share and what would you rather keep for yourself?
Beware of Strangers
Remember, you don’t know who is on the other side of your webpage. It is very easy to copy and paste a picture into a folder for personal use. Is this a picture you would be okay with showing up on someone else’s Facebook® or Pinterest®?
Watch For Clues
Check the background of your pictures. Does it show your address, work, or other personal information? Look at the clothes people are wearing. Does it have the name of your child’s school or daycare? Be very cautious of sports jerseys because they not only display the name of the team, but often the person’s last name!
Turn Off the GPS
Be careful using pictures from your phone. Your smartphone is always on hand when you need it and easily allows you to upload to sites like Facebook® and Instagram®, but also stores the GPS coordinates of where the photo was taken. To prevent this, turn the GPS function off on your phone when taking pictures.
Check Your Settings
Even if you don’t plan on sharing the photos, be sure to check the security settings on your storage provider. In 2017 a site called Koppie Koppie started selling coffee mugs using photos they found on flickr. All the photos had accidentally been uploaded with a Creative Commons license that allowed for commercial use. Don’t want your kid’s photo on a stranger’s mug? Check your security settings.
Do you have questions about what photos or videos you can use on your website? Or maybe you need a secure storage option for your organization’s marketing media. Give us a call at 620-221-3614 or email us so we can discuss your options.
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