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September 20, 2012 / carlispina

Find Creative Commons Images With Photo Pin

Finding Creative Commons licensed images for use online or in presentations can present a challenge. A number of search tools have sprung up to address this need, such as Compfight and Let’s CC. Most of these tools use the Flickr API to find relevant photos, but each one offers a distinctive user interface which is what really sets these tools apart from one another. While I have used a wide range of these tools at different times, I recently found Photo Pin and I think that it has a clean and easy-to-use interface that is perfect for quickly finding the ideal Creative Commons licensed image for any project.

The Photo Pin homepage has a fun and engaging design that highlights the photos you can find with the tool by displaying them as a pile of polaroid style images that move as you hover over each image. But, the truly worthwhile part of the tool is the search functionality. Entering your search term or terms will return 40 images that were tagged in Flickr with your terms. Search results are returned very quickly and once you have scrolled through the initial 40 images more items will load automatically as soon as you reach the final row of images without the need to click on a button. Once you have completed a basic search, you can narrow your results by choosing to view only images that are licensed to be used for commercial purposes or you can sort by relevance or how recently the item was uploaded to Flickr rather than the default sort style of “Interestingness”. When you hover over each image, you have the option to view a larger preview or to “get” the image. If you choose to get the image, you are presented with a link to the image or the option to download any of several sizes of the image as well as embeddable code that will display the attribution for the image under the Creative Commons license.

I like the fact that Photo Pin makes it easy to find attractive images for use in online projects or presentations, but even more than that, I appreciate how easy it makes it to include the proper attribution in a project. I think that this is a great tool for bloggers and frequent presenters who find themselves continually looking for Creative Commons licensed images, but I also think that it is a great option for teachers who want to encourage their students to not only use Creative Commons licensed images, but also to include proper attribution. I also really appreciate the fact that Photo Pin includes a direct link to the image, since this makes it easy to double check their attribution information to make sure that you always include proper attribution. I would definitely recommend taking a look at Photo Pin the next time you are looking for Creative Commons licensed images.

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