Thanks to Google Image Search, finding images online is easy. Anyone can find and download almost any piece of visual content. What is not that easy is keeping track of what your business has uploaded. Can this tool protect you from unfair use? The answer is no. Google only provides a search engine that finds images. Regardless of whether copyright holders uploaded them to be found there. So if you are taking your copyrights seriously, you must do it yourself.
Let’s start with some basics about copyright. It is a form of intellectual property that protects you as an author and owner of original work. Anything: books, designs, layouts, logos, ads, videos, etc., can count as an original work. Authors and owners of the copyright have exclusive rights to use and present their work.
Copyright is granted automatically. No paperwork, registration, or special mark is needed. You have copyrights as long as your work is not a copy and qualifies as being original. The only exception is for ideas. Well, at least until they gain some permanent or fixed form.
Unfortunately, to infringe copyright is as easy as to gain it. Many people do this by accident. Others infringe copyright with malicious intent, misusing the ease of doing so. Often this is plain copying, without changing anything on the original work.
More severe are cases when the original work is altered. It is harder to track and claim such infringements as the violators might claim it as the original. Moreover, the copy can be copied again and span an enormous amount of forgeries. Courts can decide on these infringements on a case-by-case basis. But it takes a lot of time, and the damage is already done. Nothing is exempt from copyright infringement. Anyone can use your visual content online, and there is only little to stop it.
Keeping Track of Your Content
Google is of little help here. Sure, they provide a possibility to filter images by usage rights. But only if you index content as copyrighted first. And this does not prevent downloading anyway. You should keep track of visual content yourself. One way is to find the images manually.
A simple Google image search consists of a search term and relevant results. So if you will enter “cat,” you will be shown pictures of cats. To keep track of visual content, we need to use the search engine from a different angle.
Our search term needs to be an image so that the results would be other images relevant to it. This is called reverse image search. Google allows us to search this way by entering the URL of the image or simply uploading it. When we provide one image of a cat, other images of cats are displayed.
A manual approach might work only if you have one or two images to keep track of online. Any successful business has more than that! So keeping track of all the visual content becomes challenging and time-consuming. Google Images Search API will help you to scrap these images automatically and hassle-free.
Enter Image Scarping
Web scraping is a process of gathering open access data in websites automatically. For our purposes, this website is Google Images, and the data is visual content. Google Images Search API is a tool that allows you to search page data automatically.
A bot will visit the Google Images search result page and extract data from it in real-time. The scale of data gathered this way is much bigger than you could achieve manually. The time it takes is lower, and all that’s left for you is to check whether there are any copyright infringements.
Moreover, Google Images Search API will show you a fuller set of data. Your own access is limited by geographical location and the device used. This API can change such information according to your needs. It is also helpful while avoiding bans as Google tends to block users who use bulk searches.
A good web scraper has to be rich in results, low on maintenance, and highly customizable. Such is SERPMaster, which is a web scraper specifically for Google and works excellently with its image search.
SERPMaster is efficient in its data gathering, and it’s light on your company’s budget. It allows you to concentrate funds and time on the main purpose – decisive legal action. Here you can learn how to scrape Google Image Search with API by SERPMaster.
To infringe copyright is easy, but to fight it is hard. Violations spread fast while legal processes are slow. Time is of the essence here, and the only option is to be quick in reverse searching your own content. Google Images Search API enables this on a large scale. So don’t wait.