What If All The Images Went Away

After arguing with (arguably) allies in science communication I was fed up. Fed up with the attitude that unattributed images are just a (small) sacrifice for the net good of science communication to the populace at large. Fed up that photographers, cartoonists & illustrators are considered by many to be lesser professions than scientists & educators. Fed up that rapid image sharing (oh I’m sorry: “curation”) can trample so many creators and yet lead to fame and fortune.

I found myself saying once again, “can you imagine what science communication would be like without images?

Note well that Glendon Mallow is discussing attribution, which is a minimal effort, and not permission, which really should be a part of the discussion (Here’s a link where that does come up). Sometimes permission is not an issue, because of creative commons licensing or the image being in the public domain. But a lack of a copyright notice is not any guarantee that an image is in the pubic domain some people will edit images to remove the attribution and copyright (OMG!) before they post an image, and you might be grabbing that bootlegged image. The bottom line is that using an image without permission is likely a copyright violation. And it’s the wrong thing to do.

But, baby steps. As noted in the post, this internet doohickey is still pretty new, so lets get the lack-of-attribution habit fixed, and then we can tackle getting permission.