Copyright Issue in a Wallpaper Website

Hi Everyone,
I was wondering in a case of a Wallpaper site that is static “photos are not submitted by users”.
How can I go about copyright issues? I will be choosing photos from internet from different sources and make them available on my site for download.

Things you might need to know:

  • I wont claim ownership over any photo.

  • I wont remove any logo or watermark (i might crop image or apply a filter only).

  • In Contact Us page i will say something like (If you are an owner of a photo and you would like it to be removed you can contact us).

  • I will add my website url to all photos (without removing original watermark if any).

  • In the future, I will implement advertisement to generate income from traffic.

I have seen a wallpaper site that writes this in footer “All images remain property of their original owners”.

What are your thoughts and suggestions? Am I doing anything wrong? how to go about it?

I am not an expert in copyright law by any means, but this really seems like it is blatantly breaking copyright and IMHO is not ethical.

You can’t just take somebody’s possession, tell them if they want it back they can ask for it back or else you will do whatever you want with it, and think it is okay. That is what it seems you would be doing with this website.

If a person takes an image with their camera, that image is the property of that person, and they own the copyright to it. You cannot use it without their express permission, I think.

Watermarks and logos are placed on the images to protect the owners, and should never be removed by someone who just wants to use the image for their purposes.


Unless you are using photographs which specifically state that they are available for reuse, including commercial use, then as @webmachine says, you are in violation of copyright.

If you want to use a copyrighted image, then you must get the permission of the copyright holder first.


The specific copyrights you violate are reusing some else’s work without their permission.


The fact that you’re in doubt is the signal that you’re doing the wrong thing here. As others have said above, you’re breaching copyright by doing this. Not a good idea.

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You can’t do this with just any image you find on the internet. You will have to find images that are licensed for reuse such as those with Creative Commons licenses and do read the license agreements for the images.
There are already sites which offer images licensed for reuse. Google Images also has filters available to search images based on usage rights.

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There are - and as I discovered recently, there are others which make false claims about the images they are offering, so be sure you use only reputable sites. (You can find suggested sites in this thread.)

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@WebMachine, @TechnoBear, @StevenHu, @ralphm, @SamA74

Thank you all very much for the response and for sharing your thoughts. I have been searching and reading in the past couple of days regarding this matter.

Your comments are matching and accurate the the findings I read. I found different ways on how to obtain legal Images like the one you mentioned here.

I am in the process of changing my business plan, that wouldn’t be a big problem for me at the moment since the website doesn’t contain any images now.

I am happy to be part of a community where members care and look for each other.

Have a great day all.


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