digital images

Q1 The Search is ON!

10. Digital Images

Purple Nails

Image Citation:
Nash, Meghan.
Nikon. Digital image. Flickr Creative Commons. N.p., 24 Feb. 2011. Web


Your first task in this Quest is to avoid plagiarism when selecting the right digital images for your reports or online work. This quest will guide you through choosing the right digital image, building a citation for that image, and helping you learn to use Creative Commons to license digital images. 

Images are often edited or modified before publishing them online. Sometimes this is done to be funny or in an effort to make people believe things that aren't real. See this article for a famous "hoax" photo that was manipulated for political purposes. We want to use digital images in ways that are fun and creative, but without plagiarizing or misrepresentation. 

Key Vocabulary:

Copyright: the legal right to be the only one to reproduce, publish, and sell a book, musical recording, etc., for a certain period of time

Plagiarism: taking someone else's work or ideas and passing them off as one's own


Did you know that when you do a "Google search" it brings up many images that are copyright? and that if you copy and then post a copyright image online you can be in big trouble. Read through the information in the content blocks below to find out what images you are legally allowed to use in your presentations or online posts. Some images you like and want to use are protected by copyright laws. It is important for you to respect the work of others, so it is important to choose the right image. Expand the content blocks by clicking on the +

Images and Copyright Step 1

See the examples below for some guidance:

  • You cannot use images with this kind of symbol unless you receive permission from the owner. 
Copyright 2 
  • You might also see a notification that "Images May be Subject to Copyright" when you do a search for images on the internet. This often happens when you use Google to search for an image. In that case, you must assume it is copyright protected unless you are able to visit the website the image came from to see if the owner is granting permission for use. If you do use Google, try going to Google Advanced Image Search and select the correct "usage rights" below the drop down arrow for the kind of image you want to use. The image below shows the permission level you would need to use.

Advanced Google 2

  • Many resources will allow you to use their photos or graphics but many expect you to pay a fee. It is best to ask permission or make sure the copyright notice allows it.  You may see a Creative Commons license like this:

Creative Commons

In this case, you will need to review the permission levels granted by the owner. See Step 5 in "Stop the Pirates" for a review of Creative Commons. In the next quest, you will modify an image and create a Creative Commons license for it.

Copyright Free Image Resources: Steps 2-3

2. Now for an alternative source, choose an appropriate digital image from one of the copyright free sites listed below or by using a search method your teacher suggests:

*NOTE:  When searching for an image on Pixabay, DO NOT click on the “sponsored images” that appear at the top of the page. These are Shutterstock images and are only available by subscription.

What should you do if you come across an inappropriate image?

FIRST, TURN YOUR MONITOR OFF without notifying your neighbor or inviting anyone else to view it! NO ONE else needs to see the image, and it doesn't require a classroom announcement to take care of the problem.

THEN, find your teacher right away and report the image. Teachers will contact the website to let them know that they need to take it down.

3. After finding an image that interests you, download and create a personal copy of the Quest 1 Answer Template.

Giving Credit ~ Cite the Source: Steps 4-6

4.  Find and read the information that describes the image you selected if it is available (sometimes you might need to right click on the image to view "Properties"). You will use this information for your citation in Step 5.

Below is a screen shot of some of the information you might be able to locate on an image. Although it might appear different on your site, notice it includes the image name, size, and owner:

Image size and name

To learn more about file formats, follow this link. What format is your digital image?

5. Generate a citation for your image. Use this link and the information from step 3 to create your citation. Place your citation in the Quest 1 Answer Template. Did it look like the citation that might have been provided with the image?

6. Create a sample Creative Commons license for this image. If you are not able to locate the name of the owner/producer of the image to put in the license, you may submit your name instead.  For video tutorials on how to create a Creative Commons license, review "Stop the Pirates " (Q3 in Be Legal and Fair). To help you describe the kind of license you chose in the template, this link to the types of licenses may be helpful, and this vocabulary sheet  explains the meaning of the terms. This infographic also does an excellent job of explaining Creative Commons. You will need to do a screenshot of your license at the end to insert it into your document.

Completing this Quest

Upload or turn in this assignment as your teacher directs.

 Check off this Quest on the 21t4s Roadmap 

I am ready to go on to Quest 2, Image Magic

ISTE and Common Core Standards

ISTE Standards•S

2. Digital Citizen
c. Demonstrate an understanding of and respect for the rights and obligations of using and sharing intellectual property

3. Knowledge Constructor
a. Plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits
b. Evaluate the accuracy, perspective, credibility and relevance of information, media, data or other resources

6. Creative Communicator
a. Choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication

Common Core Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.

Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.