Images you find "on the internet" are usually copyrighted, which means that you need to be careful about how you reuse them. However, there is an ever growing amount of images that have been made available with Creative Commons licenses, or other licenses that allow reuse. If you are going to use these images, familiarize yourself with the license types - CC-By, for example, just requires attribution of the creator, but CC-SA requires that anything that reuses that work also be licensed with the same Creative Commons license.

1) Find Images

2) Cite Images

Find Images for Reuse

The following resources are excellent for finding images that allow some reuse. Remember to still check the license and what it allows for:

    • Creative Commons Image Search
    • A search engine that finds Creative Commons licensed images across multiple platforms.
    • Flickr
    • Flickr is a photo site that allows for a wide variety of re-use licenses.
    • Google Advanced Image Search
    • You can search for images with Google by selecting the appropriate choice under "usage rights".
    • Illustrio Free Icons
    • An icon library of many simple drawings, fully customizable with your colour scheme, and freely reusable for most contexts.
    • Pixabay
    • Free images - photographs, illustrations, and videos - that allow for re-use, including commercial reuse, as long as you follow their simplified license terms.
    • Unsplash
    • Freely usable photography images.
    • Wikimedia Commons
    • Public domain and creative commons licensed images that accompany wikipedia articles. Includes diagrams, graphs, photographs, and more.

Cite Images

The following are some examples of ways to credit different types of copyrighted images that might be found in the University's public websites.

1.   Image from Creative Commons (CC)

Works under Creative Commons licensing are generally available for free subject to certain conditions, such as acknowledging the author. If you are intending to use a CC image, here is an example of a citation for using a CC image that requires the identification of the author only.

Author/Creator. Title. Source. 

©P. Smith. Cute Puppy. CC BY.

Caution should be exercised because other CC licenses for images may be more restrictive.

If you are looking for sources of Creative Commons images, you can visit the Creative Commons Search select one of the image sources from the tile menu and enter your search term.

2.   Image from YouTube

Individuals or organizations legally loading works to YouTube have the option to permit you to download the work. Using the YouTube "Share", you may be able to take an image from a video. If not permitted, you can use a link to a YouTube video. Here is a citation for using an image from YouTube.

©P. Smith. Cute Puppy. YouTube.

3.   Image from the internet with permission to use already granted

Some Internet sources permit you to use works on their site via a simple contract that may state something like "This work can be used for non-commercial use". Here is a citation example.

©P. Smith. Cute Puppy. Unsplash.

4. Image copyrighted by the University of Winnipeg located on CMS websites

With public websites using the University's content management system (CMS) administered through the Marketing and Communications unit, each web page already has a clickable "Copyright" at the bottom indicating University of Winnipeg intellectual property. Several new phrases have been added to the University of Winnipeg copyright page related to the use of other copyrighted material.

"Every effort has been made to acknowledge original sources and to comply with copyright law. If cases are identified where this has not been done,please notify the University of Winnipeg's Copyright Office at Errors or omissions will be corrected. A timely subsequent reply email will be provided to the complainant".

5.  Image copyrighted by the University of Winnipeg located on non-CMS websites 

There are some 179 non-content management system public websites that are not presently administered through Marketing and Communications. When using and citing University of Winnipeg owned photos on these websites, please use the following format.

©University of Winnipeg. Cute Puppy. Staff Photo.

6.  Image not copyrighted by the University of Winnipeg located on CMS and non-CMS websites

For images that are copyrighted not by the University of Winnipeg and represent examples 1, 2, 3, 7, and 8, please follow the respective formats.

7.  Image from a personal collection

An image that is the intellectual property of faculty should have attribution information. However, there is little need to credit personal photos of the individual or other owned images for which copyright is not being exerted. In the case when faculty is considering use of their own images in which they are claiming an intellectual property right, here is a citation example.

©P. Smith. Cute Puppy. Personal Collection.

8.   Image in the public domain

In Canada, images enter the public domain 50 years after creation (for works prior to 1949), after their creator's deaths (post-1949), or because their creator has put them in the public domain. Public domain images can be used without seeking permission or payment of royalties. Here is an example for the citing of a public domain image from Wikipedia.

©P. Smith. Cute Puppy. Wikipedia public domain.

9.    Image/Sample Media from Microsoft

As a result of the University of Winnipeg’s contract with Microsoft, faculty and staff have permission to use Microsoft’s Clip Art and Sample Media. Microsoft requires the use of the following citation.

©Used with Permission from Microsoft

If you have any questions regarding the citing of images please contact the Copyright Office at for assistance.