In a world where images convey stories, understanding photo copyright is vital.

This article on “Photo Copyright Text” provides you a valuable insight into how to write copyright text properly to protect your pictures from unlawful use.

Proper Copyright Format On Photographs Website

A copyright notice isn’t mandatory for copyright protection as photographers inherently own the copyright once they create an original image.

However, it serves essential purposes: indicating copyright protection, identifying the owner, and noting the first publication year.

The standard copyright format is:

© [First Publication Year – Last Publication Year] [Copyright Holder Name]

Note: It is advisable to include a copyright notice on every page of your photography website for improved clarity on copyright ownership.

Incorporate It

Including the notice serves as a preventive measure in infringement cases, barring the “innocent infringement” defense, potentially reducing damages awarded to the copyright holder.

Use the Correct Format

The proper format for a photography website:

  1. The copyright symbol © (a letter C in a circle), the word “Copyright,” or “Copr.”
  2. The initial publication year, hyphen, and the final publication year. If your site features images from the same year, a single first publication year suffices.
  3. The copyright owner’s name, a recognisable abbreviation, or a commonly known alternative designation.

For instance:

All images © 2013-2023 John Smith Photography

Place the copyright notice on every page displaying images. Also include it on your About page, as it provides visitors with essential copyright information, aligning with legal benefits.

Suggested Reading: Copyright Example

Proper Presentation

According to the law, the notice should be affixed in a way that “reasonably notifies of the copyright claim.” Ensure the three elements of the notice appear together on copies.

Update Publication Dates

Be prepared to update the notice when the earliest or latest publication dates change. Typically, you’ll need to update the second date annually if you add new images.

Choose Your Publication Dates

Determining publication dates can be a complex task, as it can be challenging to determine whether an image has been published or not.

The Copyright Office leaves this determination to applicants who know the distribution details of their works.

Insert It Correctly

Avoid entering the © symbol directly using keyboard shortcuts, as it may result in strange characters. Instead, use entities from the ISO-8859-1 character set.

For the © symbol in HTML, use © or better yet, the number code: ©. The code snippet would appear as follows: © 2010 David Brabyn

Add “All Rights Reserved”

Although many countries no longer require it, you can include the phrase “All rights reserved” to assert your full copyright rights.

While not obligatory, it helps clarify your copyright stance, especially in the online context where misconceptions about copyright abound. So, consider adding it to your website pages.

9 Photography Copyright Examples

In addition to including the “photo copyright text” on all image-displaying webpages, it’s crucial to provide a comprehensive Copyright notice.

This notice should outline your photographer’s rights and define what constitutes a copyright infringement.

Below, you’ll find some sample copyright notice templates to serve as a starting point for crafting your own.

Nicole Photography

Nicole Photography provides clear guidance on image usage, explicitly stating on a dedicated webpage that their online photos are not licensed for public use.

The photographer offers straightforward advice for those interested in using their images, ensuring clarity.

Bottle Bell Photography

Bottle Bell Photography’s copyright notice is succinct yet to the point, placed conveniently on the blog page’s right side.

It firmly states that any copying, usage, or reproduction of the work requires owner consent, leaving no room for ambiguity.

James F. Harrington Saugus Photos Online

The James F. Harrington Saugus Photos Online website features a detailed and comprehensive copyright notice page, highlighting the photographer’s strong stance against unauthorised use of his work.

He provides clear guidelines for interested parties on how to request image usage, emphasising the importance of proper attribution.

The inclusion of a “hall of shame” underscores his willingness to take action against infringers if necessary.

ARJ Photos

ARJ Photos’ copyright notice is presented in a clean and straightforward manner, ensuring clarity and avoiding confusion.

It covers essential aspects such as ownership, licenses, and permissions, with readily available contact information for image usage inquiries.

The notice is transparent, leaving no room for misunderstandings.

John Rowe Photography

John Rowe Photography’s copyright disclaimer page offers precise instructions on permissible and prohibited actions regarding their images.

The page is highly detailed, addressing all aspects related to copyright infringement with meticulous attention, promoting a clear understanding of their policies.

Theodore A Stark

This website includes a comprehensive copyright page that provides guidelines for the usage of content for personal, web, and commercial purposes.

The photographer plainly specifies the acceptable and prohibited uses of the photos, eliminating any potential confusion or disputes.

Silver Image Photography

Silver Image Photography’s page meticulously outlines copyright regulations for their various image types.

They address infringement criteria related to prints, alterations, and reproductions, along with specifying client usage rights, including social media posting. Their guidelines are transparent and easy to understand.

Walt Thirion

On Walt Thirion’s website, there is a copyright statement that is well-organised with clear sub-headings.

It simplifies visitors’ access to the required information, covering copyright infringement criteria for commercial, personal, and web usage. The statement also issues a stern copyright infringement warning.

Pinner’s Photography

Pinner’s Photography’s legal disclaimer page succinctly communicates its copyright terms.

The website clearly states that all of its content is protected and cannot be used, reproduced, or copied without the owner’s permission.

Although concise, the copyright message is unequivocally clear.


A well-crafted copyright statement for photography is crucial in safeguarding your exclusive rights over your original content.

Understanding copyright laws and seeking legal advice is essential for protecting your intellectual property rights in the digital age.

Remember, copyright in images lasts, ensuring the longevity of your digital photos and digital images.


What is copyright in photography?

Copyright in photography is the legal protection that grants the creator (photographer) exclusive rights over their photos.

It controls how these images can be used, shared, or reproduced by others.

Do I need to register my photos to have copyright protection?

No, you don’t need to register your photos to have copyright protection. As soon as you create an original photograph and fix it in a tangible form (like saving it digitally or printing it), you automatically hold the copyright.

What does a copyright notice on photos entail?

A copyright notice on photos typically includes the © symbol, the photographer’s name, and the year of first publication. It serves as a reminder that the image is protected by copyright laws.

How long does copyright in images last?

In most countries, copyright in images lasts for the lifetime of the creator plus an additional 50 to 70 years, depending on local laws. After this period, the image enters the public domain.

Can I use copyrighted photos for personal or commercial purposes?

You must obtain permission from the copyright owner (usually the photographer) to use copyrighted photos for any purpose. Unauthorised use can result in legal consequences, including fines and damages.

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