I am working on a Facebook education page for my church. I often find Google search images that don't have an obvious copyright symbol at the bottom of the article or blog. How do I know if these image are ok to use? Sometimes the images are in several articles. How do I locate the original creator to request permission?
As others have said, images found on Google image search are not free to use unless they are licensed as such. Google does however have advanced search features that will show you images that are licensed for reuse, commercially or non-commercially.
When you are doing an image search, click on "Search tools" then "Usage rights" and you will get a dropdown to filter your search results:
You can read more about it here: Google Search Help: Find free-to-use images
Be sure to check from the source, that any images you find are licensed for free use. Don't blindly trust the search filter, it is by no means perfect.
Better still, find free stock images from one of the many good stock image sites listed here:
Unless the image in question is accompanied by a specific statement telling you that it is royalty free and / or public domain then it is subject to copyright. There doesn't have to be a copyright symbol or registered copyright message present for copyright to apply.
Trying to trace any given image back to its source, identifying the copyright holder and then seeking their permission for use can be an extremely time consuming and often fruitless task. Your best bet is to search for sites that specialise in public domain or royalty free images and find something there to use.
Alternatively, there is always the option to take your own photographs.
Best to try to use stock images as the other folks here have said. However, if you would much rather use the image in question. You can try to get permission to use the image, thusly upholding the 8th commandment and avoiding eternal hellfire.
Going to google reverse image search. Clicking the camera button to paste a link or upload an image to the search box https://images.google.com/
Often a bit of detective work will either lead you to the creator or to someone who has accredited the work on their page. (it has worked for me in similar situations)
You can then ask for permission and be square with the universe.
You should not use images found in google image search unless you have the proper usage right. see Creative commons licenses. You can also set your google image search to filter by usage rights (under search tools).
There are may sources for stock images such as thestocks.im a collection of roality free stock libaries.
Getty images also allows you to embed their photos into your blog for free using their embed too which will give proper attribution. Embed Getty Images
Please don't just take photos found on the internet. Photographers spend a lot of time and money to produce the images that they make and they deserve the proper credit and compensation for their work.