Watermark PDFs and Images for Branding and Copyright Protection

If you run a small business that relies on digital images, such as a photography or graphic design business, copyright protection is most likely a big concern. Nowadays, digital images are at a constant risk of being used without your permission by others for personal use and professional gain. Digital watermarking of images and PDFs offers a unique advantage as it not only reduces copyright infringement, but it also allows you to brand your images for increasing business potential. Watermarking of digital images and files is referred to as digital watermarking and is relatively easy to do.

What is Digital Watermarking?

Digital watermarking is the process of adding a unique marking on your digital pictures or files that verifies the authenticity of the image, and provides others proof that it is copyrighted to you. You can choose from a variety things to be watermarked on your image, which will depend highly on your purpose, such as for branding or to prevent copyright infringement. A watermark can be visible, where it looks like a faded logo or text, or it can be invisible and only seen under special lighting.
What are the benefits of digital watermarking?

The first and most obvious benefit of digital watermarking is the ability to prevent copyright infringement. This occurs when you use a watermark that is visible on the image, so that others think twice before using the image without your permission. Secondly, you can use watermarking for brand awareness. By choosing to add a small logo or your business name on your digital images or files, viewers of the images will begin to remember your business and it can actually increase your business potential.
What are the disadvantages of digital watermarking?

You will also find some disadvantages associated with digital watermarking. The first disadvantage is the fact that your images may look less appealing to others with a watermark, especially if it is centered across the image. This can have a negative effect on your business if you are hoping to gather more business with these images, such as showing your photography style. This can be avoided with the invisible watermark, but this marking can be more difficult to trace when someone is using your photo without permission and is a disadvantage of its own.

What are example applications of digital watermarking?

There are a variety of applications of digital watermarking for your digital images. One such way is to conceal a digital watermark in such a way that it is hard to detect by anyone that might not realize it’s there. For example, if you have a busy, colorful image, it can be hidden in a corner of the image that would be hard to detect as the coloring of the watermark blends in with other colors of the image. Additional applications include the use of certification and authentication of your images, such as watermarks that are so faded they can only be seen by rotating the printed image in certain directions or holding it under a special light. Another example is to use watermarks on images or files that will allow you to know if the image has been tampered with or manipulated somehow, because this invisible watermark becomes visible.
What are some watermarking PDF and Images Tips?

  • Information to include – The information you include on your digital watermark will be related to the purpose of the watermark. For example, if you want to increase your brand awareness, the best information to include will be something others will recognize such as your logo, business name or even your business website. For copyright purposes, you can watermark the copyright symbol, your name, your email address or the date.
  • Placement of watermark – There is no right or wrong place to put the watermark, but this also depends on the purpose of it. If you are showing sample images that you simply don’t want used by others, you can put a faded watermark in the middle of the image. However, for branding awareness and to really show off your picture without risking copyright issues, place the watermark on one of the corners; the bottom-right corner seems to be a preferred location.
  • Tools to use – You have your choice of tools and software for adding the watermark to your digital images or files. If you already have a paid version of photo editing software, such as Adobe Photoshop or Corel Paint Shop Pro; those are great for adding watermarks. Free software tools are also available for watermarking your images and files including Alamoon Watermarking Software and Inkscape.

Digital watermarking for images and PDF files has advantages and disadvantages when you are using it for copyright protection or brand awareness. Ultimately, the choice is yours about whether or not you choose to protect your images or increase business potential by adding your logo or business name on images and files. Keep in mind, internet liability insurance can also provide protection against intellectual property rights infringement, such as copyright infringements.