GroundUp Images is a library of free photographs, mostly available under a Creative Commons license.
Choose a photo. Download the size(s) you need. Use it in your publication.
The only requirements are that you (1) credit the photographer and GroundUp, (2) indicate that the photograph is under a Creative Commons license by putting the text (CC BY-ND 4.0) after the credit, and (3) do not modify the image, except for cropping or minor post-processing to fit the needs of your publication. This only applies to photos licensed as Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International, but that's nearly all our images.
Many publications need high-quality images that capture Southern Africa's politics and current events. We hope this library is useful to them.
GroundUp is a non-profit news agency funded by grants and donations. We want our material to be used. We're happy when you use the photos in this library so long as you stick to the terms.
No. For all the photographs here, we've either paid for them, or employed the photographers who take them, or (very occasionally) been given free license to use them by the photographers.
We or the photographers are the owners of all the photographs on this site. Neither GroundUp nor the photographers can ever revoke the freedoms we've given you to reuse the photos made available under the Creative Commons license, but we continue to own the photos.
Importantly, GroundUp or the photographers always own the moral rights on the photographs. That means we can object to any "distortion, mutilation or modification" of the photo that prejudices the honour or reputation of the photographer or GroundUp (see section 20 of the link, which is the South African Copyright Act).
In theory yes, but it's unethical, albeit not illegal, to sell photographs that we've made available at no charge. A site that sells our photos would be misleading its customers, because those customers could simply come to our site and download them free. Also, any site that sells our photos must still abide by the terms of the license, and that means clearly crediting us, and making it clear that the photos are under a Creative Commons license.
Strictly speaking our default license (CC BY-ND 4.0) does not allow modification (except for private use). However, we do not object to minor reasonable modifications to make photographs fit the requirements of a publication. So cropping is fine. So is minor post-processing. If we think you've gone too far, we'll let you know with a courteous email or letter. You can always check with us first if you're unsure.
We'll start off by sending the violator a courteous email or letter. If the violation continues, we'll consider legal action. For serial or particularly unpleasant violators we may dispense with the courteous email or letter and start with litigation.