Bio-Image Search: A New Tool to Help You Find Images You Can Use

Stanford has developed a tool that searches a group of image collections, then ranks your search results by categorizing which images allow the broadest reuse rights vs the most restrictive reuse rights. This makes it easy to find images in the Public Domain or those with CreativeCommons licenses that allow little or no restrictions on use. Image collections searched are from government sources (PubMed Central, National Cancer Institute), academic institutions, Wikimedia, and the Wellcome images collection. The nice thing about the results rankings is that you can easily find images that will not require copyright permissions for use, so you won’t have to worry about putting the image on a slide that you will show at a conference or in a CME course, or even up on your own website.


The tabs that show up with your search results allow you to select images from the following categories: maximum reuse rights, broad reuse rights, possible reuse rights, and restrictive reuse rights. If the image you really want to use has restrictive rights, you can still request permissions to use the image, but this search tool will help you find images where you will not need to request permissions.

To try out Stanford’s Bio-Image search, click here.

For other copyright questions or information on additional image resources, use the form at the end of this post to contact Peggy Tahir, Education & Copyright Librarian. You can also check out the UCSF Library’s Libguides on Copyright at UCSF and on Finding and Using Images.

About Peggy

Peggy is the Education & Copyright Librarian
This entry was posted in Copyright, Database, Presentation tips. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply