Legal warning issued to firms over website images

Companies often entrust outside agencies to help them with issues such as business execution software and strategy execution in general. In the same way, many enterprises rely on third parties to generate websites for them. After all, the endeavour can be highly technical.

The results of such collaborations can be impressive and serve organisations very well.However, it is vital that firms know their rights and responsibilities when they outsource web design to others. This was the message delivered recently by the Forum of Private Business (FPB).

It noted that it has been receiving a rising number of calls from enterprises that have unwittingly infringed copyright laws. These firms presumed the design companies they sourced had secured permission to utilise the images they placed on their websites, when it fact this was not the case. Liability in such instances lies with the businesses that paid for the websites, rather than the designers.

The FPB, which a non-profit organisation that provides support and protection to small and medium-sized businesses around the country, therefore warned companies to check they are legally entitled to use the images on their websites.

Its chief executive Phil Orford remarked: “I think the digital age has blurred the boundaries of image copyright in many people’s minds and some business owners mistakenly think that because an image is freely available on the internet, it can be reused without permission.”

“Additionally, many smaller businesses entrust web design companies with the whole process of registering and creating their website, and presume that their web design company will only use images they are entitled to use.”

Cases like this demonstrate to firms the importance of using only the very best and most professional organisations when they need to outsource, whether they are after web design services, business execution software and strategy execution assistance or anything else.

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