Since it happens more and more that I click on my tracked tags to see unsourced fanarts and graphics, it is time to update THIS post.
HELP! I found this awesome picture, but don’t know who did it!
There are 3 steps you can take to not be disrespectful towards the creator of the piece:
1. Save fanart/graphics/gifs with the name of the creator.
This might sound annoying at first, but in the end, it saves you a lot of trouble looking for the creator. It is no coincidence that deviantArt’s default filename for images contains the name of the deviantArtist. It speaks for how lazy we tend to be while saving stuff for ourselves that this was implemented.
It does not take long to simply add a nickname to a file, just try to do it.
2. Use the browser extension ‘Image Search Options’
If you didn’t saved the file with the name of the creator or you got it from an image board does not mean you should post it without source on your blog.
The browser extension gives you the ability to simply right-click an image and select one of four reverse image searches, sauceNAO, IQDB search, TinEye and Google’s reverse image search. Here is the extension for firefox, and here is the link for Google Chrome.
Image taken from the Google Chrome Web Store.
You can easily look through the results of the different search engines.
3. HELP! My image can still not be sourced after I did all that!
Now is the point where you should consider if you even want to post the image. Some artists do not like their art reposted outside of their own blogs/accounts (I know quite a few pixiv artists who think like that). Since you do not know the source, you also don’t know their opinion on it. When in doubt, just don’t post it.
If you really, really can’t keep it to yourself any longer, you can tag your post with ‘source needed’ and write that you didn’t create the image. Maybe someone else knows the artist and can link you to the source. But at the very least, people can easily tell that you didn’t create this and do not make false assumptions.
That’s so much work, the artist should be happy I am distributing their work!
Maybe they are happy for the added attention, but without source, how should anybody know who did it? The attention will not be directed in their direction. Just imagine someone sees that really awesome fanart on their dash and want to know more about the artist, but there is no source and the blog it was posted on is not the one of the creator.
If you indeed add source, people can check out the other stuff that person created and tell them in person that they like their creations.
On top of that, most artists don’t track all the different art platforms their art could possibly be posted on. It is highly unlikely that an artist will notice a repost of their art and therefore see the notes on it.
But I never said it was my OWN, I didn’t steal anything!
Let’s approach this like a scientific paper is approached. Everything that isn’t cited or linked back will automatically be assumed to be your creation.
Not posting a source and not writing it down for everybody to see that you are not the original creator indicates that you did indeed create this piece.
Please source the art you post, it is not as big of a hassle as you might think of. Be respectful, add a source.