- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
To use a photograph, illustration, chart or other graphic image that you didn't create, you may need to get permission.
Using copyrighted material without permission is copyright infringement or copyright violation and can result in costly legal penalties.
You can avoid copyright infringement by getting written permission from the copyright holder to use copyrighted materials, such as a non-UC photo, drawing, table, or other material for your manuscript.
While UC employees don't need permission to use material that is copyrighted by The Regents of the University of California, it is professional courtesy to credit colleagues if you use their photos or graphics. The University of California has published a helpful website on copyright basics.
Permission isn't needed to use photos, video or other material produced or published by the U.S. federal government or any of its agencies because they are in the public domain. There may be exceptions, for example, the 4-H name and emblem.
You can also learn the basics of copyright, when you can and cannot use images or tables, as well as how to protect your own material. Cynthia Kintigh, permissions officer and publications marketing director, and Robin Sanchez, director of policies, compliance and programmatic agreements, present best practices in a 53-minute webinar at https://youtu.be/J6O6TjreTy4.