What Does The “Royalty-Free” Label Mean?
When something has a royalty-free label, that means you may be allowed to use the intellectual property without paying royalties. But that doesn’t imply you can use the photo, video, or other property freely.
The creator of whatever image, video, music, or other work you are looking at is required to put the royalty free label to allow customers to use it without royalty payments. Even without royalties, a person or business may gain the right to use a piece of intellectual property through a one-time lump payment or some other arrangement.
Whether or not something is royalty-free has little to do with its copyright protections.
The creator of any music, video, or image is automatically the owner of it. They don’t even need to register their copyright to gain legal ownership.
Copyright infringement is any unlawful use of intellectual property. That means that the image, music, or video you want to use, which you did not create or gain the right to use, is protected.
There does not need to be a warning for intellectual property to be protected by copyright. Copyright symbols, a watermark, or audio reminders in free music aren’t necessary for the owner to be able to go after you for copyright infringement.
So, do not confuse royalty free with unlimited rights to use a piece of work you find online.