Permission for Photo Use on a Church Web Site


There must be a simple answer, but I would like to know the ins and outs of using pictures of people on our church's website. Do people give implicit permission by attending church events? Clearly we can ask permission from a few where individuals are highlighted, but what about group shots that could include dozens? What about a really great picture of child taken five years ago? And what if that family has since left the church, but I think the picture still captures a great moment in the life of the church? Does anyone publish first and then wait for protest? That seems to be the facebook model, but websites are a little more public than facebook pages, though in the case of an organization, a facebook page is pretty public.

Thanks for helping.

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Check out this link:  I'm sure there's more info about church photos but this can help to get you started.

Great question Richard.  At my church whenever there was a planned time to have pictures taken; there was a general announcement made to let people know that there would be a photographer taking photos.  I hope others chime in with their experiences at their church.



I don't have the answer to your question specifically.  We generally ask for permission for photos that highlight particular people unless the photos were submitted by family (We asked for photos of church life a while back).  We haven't gotten written permission but it might be great thing to do.

I have found some other sources to get good quality images for church websites and other publicity items that you can legally use.  I compiled a list in a blog post I wrote on a different site.  WIll just put a link to it rather listing them all again here.


Hope that helps.



Kimberly provides a good link. Best to check with appropriate state or provincial legislation in the area of Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy legislation. Signed consent forms by adults and guardians should be standard practice.

Thanks for the many comments. We are now studying the photos we were thinking of using and identifying those whose faces show clearly, and will seek permission. I am not sure of local law on the use of photos, but I think we can take some reasonable precautions so that we will not mistreat any of our members or visitors.