|Photo watermarked after original publishing on blog|
If you blog, and your blog is public to anyone on the web, you probably know that you should be watermarking your photos to offer them a bit of protection from... well... plagiarism.
But what if you've been blogging for years, and somehow watermarking just wasn't a priority? Now you're looking at hundreds (at least) of photos that need watermarking. It's overwhelming and altogether impractical to think of going through and editing each and every photo and re-uploading it into each post.
That has been my dilemma for quite some time, but after Picnik went away (RIP, Picnik), Google integrated some of the Picnik functionality with Picasa Web Albums, and the result is that you can edit photos that were uploaded long ago, and they'll be automatically updated on your blog (and any other blog that might be hotlinking your photos) without having to re-upload anything, if you save it correctly. I'm going to show you how to do that. The only downside is that there is no way to batch-edit that I am aware of- you have to pick and choose which photos are most important to watermark, and do them one at a time, a little at a time until you've finished them.
This tutorial is for bloggers who use Picasa Web Albums to host their images (i.e. instead of uploading photos from your computer straight into your blog post, the images are stored in Picasa Web Albums and embedded into the post by the URL generated by Picasa). Also, I use Blogger, so I can't speak for how well this works on Wordpress or Typepad blogs, or for using a photo hosting site like Photobucket. If anyone tries it with another photo hosting site or blogging platform, let me know, and I'll post those results.
On to the tutorial:
Here is a screenshot from a post I did a couple of years ago, and I had not watermarked any of the photos. I really didn't feel like I needed to watermark each and every one, but I wanted to do the first photo, shown above, and the last photo, shown below.
First, I went into my web album where I was storing my photos for this post, and I selected this photo.
Second, I went into the "Actions" dropdown menu and clicked "Edit in Creative Kit".
Once in the creative kit, I clicked text.
In the text box at the top left I typed in my blog URL and clicked the font I wanted to use, then clicked "Add".
The text was added, and I had the opportunity to re-size it and choose the placement. Then on the menu that pops up while the text is selected, I used the slide bar to select the amount of fade I wanted. Depending on the colors and exposure in the picture, 40%-70% fade is the range that typically works the best.
Once the watermark is in place, click "Save to my album" in the top right corner, then when the "Confirm Photo Replace" popup comes up, you must click "Replace". Obviously, if you haven't yet published the blog post, you could click "Save a new copy" if you wanted to preserve the original for some reason, but replacing the original is the only way to update the photo in your already- published post without re-uploading the photo and re-publishing the post.
Within a minute or two, the photo will be updated on the blog.
As I mentioned before, replacing the original photos with watermarked ones in this way will not only automatically update your own blog posts using those photos, but any other site which is hotlinking your photos (that is that they are displaying your photos by copying your photo URL and inserting it into their own post, or just straight out copying the html for your whole post... this will not work if they have copied your original photo to their own computer and uploaded it themselves) will be updated with the watermarked photos as well, hopefully regaining you some lost traffic.
I have to mention that watermarking is not the most foolproof way of protecting your photos, but it probably is the easiest and most time-efficient deterrent to photo- swiping. I think when it comes down to it, nobody wants to be the photo/ blogging police- after all, most people are well intentioned, and/or perhaps aren't up-to-date on their blogging etiquette. In these circumstances, sometimes the best thing is to do... nothing (except watermark your photos- ha!). Do you agree? Disagree?