Getty Images

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Cameron's picture
Getty Images

Hi all,

I just recently purchased the book to help with creating accurate footnotes and a bibliography for my family history book, and I'm brand new to the forums (this is my first post!). I did a search for Getty Images which didn't seem to turn up any results so I'm posting here hoping for some insight regarding a citation.

I'm trying to cite an image of a map found here:

I'm struggling with determining if this should be cited as a map, an online image, a website, or database (or some combination for a layered citation). Here's what I've come up with so far for the first (full) reference note:

“Map of Europe 1877,” Getty Images ( : accessed 6 March 2018); creative # 171355945. Royalty-free, no release required.

The final bit "Royalty-free, no release required." is more a note for the first reference than a necessary part of the reference itself. I have a feeling I'm not citing this correctly, but I'm also not very confident what the "correct" format would be. Any help is appreciated!

- Cameron

EE's picture

Cameron, format-wise, you've done well. EE would make only three suggestions for the format

1. Use a comma rather than semi-colon between the parenthetical publication data and the image number. The image number serves the same function as a page number in a book and we would not separate the page number into a different citation "layer" from the book itself. 

2. Use the full URL. When I used the base URL and then queried for the no. 171355945, I got a "no results" message. When I searched for "Map of Europe 1877" Getty delivered this: "1877 Map Europe Pictures and Images," with one image of soldiers examining what could be a map. Only when I used the full URL could I locate the image you're citing.

3. The website name is actually GettyImages, one word.

Past that point, you raise an issue for which you might want to query The Legal Genealogist ( for better guidance. The term "royalty-free" does not mean that we can use an image from a site without any payment or permission. It's called "royalty-free" because there are no recurring royalties (i.e., periodic payments) but there's almost always a one-time license fee. See Alex Wild, "What Does Royalty-Free Mean," Scientific American ( ).

In this case, GettyImages states that it cannot sell us a license to use its image because there are "country, company and/or publication restrictions" upon it. Instead, it gives us two options: (1) We may purchase a copy of the map from them; or (2) we may save their image to their "Board" and we may share access to that Board with collaborators. But I do not see a statement that we may download Getty's image from its website and use it as we wish.


The Editor