Copyright is very well protected in Swedish legislation. The originator of an artistic work (for example photos, paintings, films, illustrations or sculptures) always owns the moral rights to their works. Therefore, the works may not, in an offensive way, be cropped, distorted or used without the originator’s permission. In practice, not much is required for an alteration to be considered offensive. Furthermore, the name of the originator must always be mentioned when using their works. Moral rights cannot be transferred. This means that the originator, regardless of what happens, always has the right to be named as originator of the work.
Financial rights means that the originator alone can use their work(s) and decide whether it should be made available to the public or duplicated. This right enables the originator to profit financially from their work while they also get to decide whether someone else is allowed to use their work and also how they may use it. The originator can transfer their financial rights if they choose to. In that case, the person with the financial right to the work has it at their disposal and can therefore benefit financially from it. When SLU buys images from for example external photographers, depending on the type of agreement, we buy the financial rights to the work.
SLU owns the financial rights to works that have been created by photographers or media producers during their employment at the university. This means that SLU has the right to use images/films whenever we want without reimbursing the originators.
Can I use images that I find online?
It is illegal to download an image from the internet and then use it in your material unless it is expressly stated that the image may be downloaded and used in the way you like.
Using the internet and social media makes it much easier to copy and use image material without permission from the originator. However, it is still illegal. It is not enough to just name the source, the originator’s name and © to be allowed to publish an image. You cannot “quote” images as you can text. You must always ensure that you are allowed to use the image/video material in the way you wish before actually using it.
Remember the following:
- When you order/purchase an image, you usually just buy the right to use it in a specific context, or in a specific size and edition. Think through how you want to use the image (including publishing in “future” media) before signing an agreement. If any of these details are altered, or if you want to reuse an image in another context or reprint, you must contact the originator again for their approval (they must often be reimbursed).
- No offensive alterations can be made to the image material without the originator's permission (e.g. cropping, retouching, digital manipulation). In practice, not much is required for an alteration to be considered illegal.
- You may not produce new examples of an image without the originator’s permission. This applies if you are creating a newspaper, printed material, publishing material on the internet or in an image register, etc. It is a good idea to regulate such alterations in an agreement beforehand.
- Remember that if artworks, paintings or designed furniture are the main subjects of an image, the designer’s copyright becomes an issue. If you publish images of artworks, you may be financially liable.
- Enter the originator’s name. Regardless of where the image comes from, the originator’s name must be displayed when using the image.
Enter the photographer’s name followed by SLU.
Example: Photo: Julio Gonzalez, SLU
Images purchased from e.g. photo agencies
First, enter the photographer’s name followed by the agency/supplier.
(Example: Photo: Juji Jumani/iStock)
There are different requirements for these images depending on their license.
Ideal model: Enter the name of the work (link to the work), the originator’s alias (possible link), CC license (link to information on the license).
More on how to state the originator of CC-licensed images.
Unless you enter the originator’s name, SLU could be liable to pay damages. If there is not enough space, or you do not wish to enter the originator’s name for another reason, check with them if this is allowed and document it, for example through email contact.