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HELP! I've Received A LARGE Bill For An Image I've Used. Advice Please!

I am overwhelmed right now.

An image of a cocktail, that I'm sure I found on iStockPhoto.com, has brought me a bill from Getty Images for $780.00. 

$780.00!!!!

I am so confused, scared and sick to my stomach.

When I use images I am pretty sure I'm using them from free sites - how else would I get the images?!

I've so scared now I feel like taking down both of my blogs - that I've had for over 4 years - because I'm terrified this is going to happen again.

Advice please?  HELP!

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Was the note sent via email or by snail mail?  Was it sent from an attorney's office?

It was sent from their office in Seattle

I found this information online.  Not sure if your letter is from Getty Image's or not.

http://womeninbusiness.about.com/b/2011/08/23/getty-image-settlemen...

This is a very helpful article. Thank you Christy.  The comments make for an informative forum for what's going on with Getty Images and my "bill".  I recommend the link above for anyone else going through this bizarre and scary situation.

Their mission was adverted thanks to a little detective work.  Glad you posted this because this information can be helpful for other bloggers.  I also use stock photos for my posts or my personal photos.

You can always contact a local attorney, most will give you a free consult.

Someone on my facebook feed posted about a scam going around about bills being sent to people.

http://r-rwebdesign.com/blog/?p=1959

Odds are nothing will happen - the way they make money is to send thousands of these letters and see who they can scare into paying - that's why its not from an attorney...they would have to pay them.

It is a fishing expedition.

That is scary, but I'd be wary, for sure.

Most likely is is a scam to get money. They won't quit but I ran this buy an attorney and he said ignore them. Chances are they are not for real and if only 1% pay up their scam works.

Take the image down. Apologize and then ignore them is what I did. If it is only one image even if they are legit, the fee would be cost prohibitive for them to peruse. (I am not a lawyer and I am not giving you legal advice.) LOL

I had this happen to me this year as well from Getty Images.  Take down the images they are referring to asap.  They have contacted me twice now about it for two images..one also being for exactly $780.  I freaked out as well..and wanted to take my blog down. Do not use stock photo's anymore.  I stopped using them and went through a lot of my blog deleting them. 

My lawyer says that he doubts if it is really the photo company but a scam artist but yes take it down. Don't reply and either buy your photos from istock photo or if you grab them off the web go to advanced search and sort by "royalty free".

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