Yearbook Tips: The 411 on Copyright Images

Wouldn’t it be great to have Mickey Mouse with a cap and gown on the cover of your yearbook? What about having Family Guy characters in-between graduates portraits?  While these maybe creative and fun ideas, have you stopped and considered whether you have the legal right to include these images in your yearbook? More than likely, you don’t.

Since no one on your committee is likely a copyright lawyer, it is important that every team member be familiar with basic copyright and trademark laws.

According to 1976 Copyright Act, only the creator of a copyrighted work or the owner of a copyright is legally allowed to reproduce, perform, display, distribute of or create variations of a work. Any unauthorized use of that material is considered Yearbook Tips: The 411 on Copyright Imagescopyright infringement. If you use that image without obtaining permission from the copyright owner, there is the potential for legal action as well as a cease and desist to occur. For more details on copyright law, visit

So how do you know if an image is copyrighted?  For one, a watermark symbol may appear over the image or the copyright © symbol may appear next to the image. If you don’t see any of these, you may want to utilize Google and do a reverse-search on the image. This will allow you to view where the images have been posted, and possibly even tell you who the primary owner is.

Once you identify the owner,  you will want to contact them to get written permission to allow you to utilize the photo or image in your yearbook. This can be a challenge as it can take a long time to get a reply from the owner and there is a chance that the owner will want to be compensated for your use of that image.

To avoid delays and any other challenges, you should consider using royalty free, stock photography images from websites such as Deposit Photos, ShutterStock and ThinkStock. Through these sites you can purchase great photos that you can use in your yearbook and not have to worry about any legal implications.

It is always recommended that before you submit your yearbook for printing that the book is reviewed by a  high-ranking school official such as a Principal or Superintendent.

7 Tips for Every Yearbook Staff

Most yearbook staff members know that planning and designing a school yearbook is not always easy. Whether you are getting a late start or have already begun the process of creating and designing your school yearbook, check out the following helpful tips and ideas every yearbook staff should know.

7 Tips for Every Yearbook Staff

Here are several tips the yearbook staff should keep in mind:

  1. SELECT A YEARBOOK THEME: Choose and stick to a theme. Themes help create a cohesive look to the book and provide a framework for design.
  2. TAKE AS MANY PICTURES AS POSSIBLE: Gather photos throughout the school year of events, activities, and daily school life. Get as many as you can so you will have a large selection when layout time comes. The students, teachers, school staff, and parents are great resources for photos. Some yearbook software options (like Pictavo and YBLive) allow multiple users to upload photos online with ease, allowing all the members of the school community to share their photos with the yearbook staff.
  3. ASK FOR HELP FROM THE ENTIRE SCHOOL COMMUNITY: Enlist help from students, teachers, and even parents. Your staff may include writers, researchers, photographers, and layout artists, so ask around as early as possible. Ask students to submit their own stories, photos, or illustrations to include in the yearbook.
  4. MARKET THE YEARBOOK WISELY:  Advertise the yearbook throughout the school year! Get the word out at school events, on the school website, through social media, through signage and automated calling that this year’s yearbook will be something the students will cherish forever.
  5. SELL YEARBOOK ADS: If you want to raise additional revenue for your yearbook, sell advertising space to businesses, students, clubs, and families.
  6. DON’T PROCRASTINATE: Set goals for all of your staff members to finish their assignments. Be sure that assignments are completed early enough in the process to allow time for review and edit.
  7. EDIT & PROOFREAD THE YEARBOOK: Edit the yearbook carefully. Read through each word, check the photos, and confirm facts. Pages should be edited by someone other than the designer and by as many people as possible. Editing is the crucial last step in assuring a quality product.

If you’re looking for a quality, affordable yearbook printer, contact us at YearbookLife. We’ll be glad to send you a FREE quote and assist you through the entire yearbook process.

2016-2017 Yearbook Submission & Deadline Information

Yearbook season is in full swing! Before you know it, your yearbook will be complete and you’ll be ready for submission.

Just some information to get you through to the end…

Yearbook Deadlines and StuffFinal Deadlines

If you need to work past the submission date on your agreement or on the Pictavo clock, you can, just contact us to reschedule the submission and delivery dates.

Deposits & Final Payment

A 50% deposit is due upon submission of your book. We will send you an invoice for this deposit once your book is submitted. Remember that you can alter the number of books or the number of pages of your book from the original contracted amount up until your submission date without penalty. Just contact us for the adjusted price of your books.

Follow Us on Facebook!

For information through yearbook season, please follow us on Facebook –

Technical Support

Our technicians are available to assist you with all of your Pictavo questions. Please contact them at 1-800-887-0414, or through email at Be sure to also refer to Pictavo’s Help Menu for detailed information about all of Pictavo’s functions.


…and don’t forget about our 2016-2017 Best Yearbook Contest!

From March 1, 2016, through midnight (EST) May 31, 2017 (the “Promotional Period”), YearbookLife will conduct a 2016-2017 best yearbook contest.  All Spring delivery yearbooks delivered between March 1, 2016 and May 31, 2017 will be eligible to win. For official contest rules, click here to visit our web page for more information. Good Luck and Have Fun!


Yearbook Enhancements: Personalizing Your Yearbook Cover

One of the most popular enhancement options for your yearbook is personalizing your yearbook cover. This type of personalization allows you to add the student’s name to the yearbook cover. Depending on your cover type, a student’s name can be printed in ink, stamped on with foil, or engraved on a name plate.

For every book you want personalized, you will send YearbookLife a spreadsheet list containing all of the personalized text.  The text will be printed in Upper and Lower case letters as you indicate on your spreadsheet.  Be sure the text appears on your spreadsheet exactly the way it should appear on the cover.

If you sell your personalized yearbooks through Pictavo Community, you can export the personalization list as a spreadsheet file as follows:

  1. From the Admin icon, click on Manage Sales.
  2. Select the View Orders tab.
  3. Click on the Export to Excel button – this creates a spreadsheet of all of the orders for your book.  The personalized names can be found in Column P.
  4. Delete all of the other columns from the spreadsheet except Column P so that your spreadsheet is just a one column file. For Personalization Option 4, with icons, we can help you separate the names from the icon selections if you need assistance.
  5. Save this spreadsheet and email it to when you submit your book.

Contact YearbookLife if you have any questions about Yearbook Personalization or any other enhancement options for your yearbooks.

Managing Offline Yearbook Sales

Initiating The FIRST Yearbook Sale

Make it easy for all audiences to purchase a yearbook. Consider the following process:

  • Get 9 x 12 envelopes for every teacher on campus. Include a color flyer for each student in the class (35) as well as an order form for a yearbook and instructions.
  • Have teachers pass out the flyer and order form and provide a script to have them discuss the sale of yearbooks to their class.
  • Have teachers inform students that a sale will be occurring all week in the cafeteria or yearbook room before school, during lunch, after school, and all games/functions all week.
  • Consider collecting non-refundable down payments with a payment plan of 1 or 2 extra payments or collect full payment.
  • At your yearbook order table, make it fun. Include music as well as posters and copies of previous yearbooks as well as samples of merchandise available. Have about 4-5 staffers manning the table to take orders. If possible, have staffers wear t-shirts that match.
  • If possible, create posters with multiple photos you have taken for the yearbook for students to see.


Initiating The SECOND Yearbook Sale

Make it easy for all audiences to purchase a yearbook. Consider the following process:

  • Instead of using classroom teachers to review the sale, include a classroom poster to announce the sale and the new price.
  • Use this sale process to focus on teams and clubs. Have coaches and sponsors promote the sale to their group/team as an example of school spirit.
  • Use this sales process to visit club or team meetings to discuss sale and include some images they can review that may be included in the yearbook.
  • Create a special incentive for groups or teams having 100% buy rates
  • Continue to set up a table in a public area and also include sales brochures at key locations.


Initiating The FINAL Yearbook Sale

Make it easy for all audiences to purchase a yearbook. Consider the following process:

  • This is the LAST CHANCE SALE to purchase a yearbook or reserve a copy.
  • Post FINAL NOTICE flyers in all classrooms as well as key areas on campus.
  • Post a list of names of all non-buyers OR buyers and let people see if they are on the list. Promote the action they must take to be removed/added to the list.
  • Create a sales table again to collect final orders from students and parents.


Distribution of the Yearbook

Plan for this event ahead of time by getting your distribution process on paper for all to review.

  • Inform the public how many extra yearbooks may be arriving that will be sold on a first-come first-serve process at the highest sales price of the year.
  • Plan on music, snacks, and fun…Order extra yearbook merchandise you can sell at the distribution event.
  • No reservations will be accepted for yearbooks without full payments taking place. Give yourself a little wiggle room. If you ordered 50 extra copies…plan on selling ½ of them by reservation then the other ½ upon arrival. This will spread opportunity to all buyers.
  • Invite local VIP’s like district personnel. Also invite local advertisers to your event & have them to set up a display or pass out coupons to your captured audience.

Have fun and enjoy the experience.

Pictavo Is Not A Photo Storage Service

As you complete your yearbook, please keep in mind that Pictavo is not meant to replace the current online photo storage service you may be using.

The images that you have uploaded into your yearbook are only temporarily saved on our Pictavo server. These images will be deleted within 30 days of your yearbook being submitted.

If there are any images you want to save for other projects, please do so before submitting your yearbook, and please make sure that you receive permission to use these images that were intended for use in the yearbook.

You can download these images one-by-one by going to the “Images” icon, then “Candids” or “Portraits”, and clicking on the green down arrow in the bottom right hand corner of each individual image. This will allow you to save the image on any online photo storage service, your hard drive, flash drive, DVD, or any other external source.