The royalty free definition is simple. It does not mean that the images are free of charge. It means you can use the images multiple time in several ways for a one-time flat fee. In short, you don’t have to pay for royalties every time you use the images. This type of license became popular because it offers buyers more flexibility and affordability than its rights-managed counterpart. Here are three more things you need to know about royalty free.
Royalty free is most common in clip art and stock photos. When you purchase clip art and stock photography for web design, brochures and blogs, you are usually getting a royalty free license with them. Conditions and restrictions are written on the agreement, so make sure you read and understand it thoroughly. Most common conditions involved are in terms of modification, limitations and brand identity.
Royalty free has an upfront fee payment. Before, royalty free price depends on the resolution of the image. Although this is still true with other stock sites, some already offers a fixed price regardless of resolution. Other factors that establish the value of a stock image are exclusivity, purpose and length of time it will be used. However, this is only applicable to rights-managed. With royalty free, no repetitive payments are charged for continuous use.
You’re paying for intellectual property. Royalty free remains the intellectual property of the copyright holder. You cannot copyright the image even if you change it. As licensee, you need to protect the image from illegal use.
Many buyers use royalty free images because they are more affordable and flexible than rights-managed images. For a one-time flat fee, you can use the images in any project for as long as you want. However, this type of license does not offer exclusive rights. You may find the same image in other websites. If you want the image to represent your brand, it’s best to get a rights-managed license.