Originally Posted by yocelita
So I know you are not a lawyer so when I ask this I only ask as an opinion, and since you are waaaaay more wise in this subject I wanted to see what you have to say
So if I bought images that are copyrighted from someone that obviously doesn't own a copyright privilege to sell them (they are the ones who went on the Internet and put together an image package). Then they would be infringing...what about the person who bought the images to make products using those images?
Like the flu, copyright infringement can be passed from one person to another. If the image is infringing then the use of the image is infringing. Copyright law grants certain so-called "exclusive rights" which are better called "marketing rights". One of these rights is reproduction and another is display (there are more than two rights). Even if you buy the image for personal non-commercial use only, putting the image on a t-shirt to wear to the mall would violate the "display" right and would be infringing. In this day of the internet day these marketing rights have the potential to be to be devastating to unsuspecting buyers.
In this case buying protection revolves around knowing your source. Generally a reputable source will state licenses and/or their own copyrights. Ironically, many designers do not try to register their designs because they are under the false impression that they have copyright protection once their design is created. That part of US Copyright Law has created an urban myth about copyrights. Upon creation, the expression of an idea has copyright protection but the artist cannot get any of these "protections" until AFTER the expression of the idea has been REGISTERED. Many people falsely believe they can sue and get damages if someone else uses their design. It is far more complicated than that.