Is Microsoft Encouraging You To Steal Images Off The Web?

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I’ll admit it – I own a copy of Microsoft Office.  Mac version, 2011.  I really only use Word and Excel.  Word I use for critiques, as most people like the review features in the program and send me Word docs to critique.  I also use it to print stuff since my printer doesn’t do duplexing.

Like so many other people, I also use Office at work.  Just goes with the territory, you know?

In both instances, I also use the clip art and images you get as part of your license.  Comes in handy when you need a little something in your doc.  But I hate the in-program interface for searching through that art.  Here’s the way it looks in Word for Mac 2011:

Click to EMBIGGEN

Click to EMBIGGEN

In the version of Office I use at work, it’s very different, opening up as a sort of side pane.  When you search, you get these little thumbnails – I really don’t like it.

So for years, I’ve used the Office website to search for images to use.

Well, last week – Microsoft changed that site, taking away the image search function, and encouraging people to use their newest version of Office instead.

Screen shot 2013-10-12 at 11.17.07 PM

Screen shot 2013-10-12 at 11.29.29 PM

Also, they tell you that if you aren’t using the latest version, to just use Bing’s image search.

Screen shot 2013-10-12 at 11.17.22 PM

Okay.  So.  Microsoft wants us to use Bing’s image search to find their clipart?  No.  Because Bing’s image search doesn’t just show us clipart – and their instructions don’t say anything about clipart or licensing or royalty free images – it just says ‘type a word or phrase describing the art you want’, and then right click it to save and use it.

Um.

No.

I can’t believe this is M$’s intention, but it sure does read that way, and I can see a world of trouble falling on people who do this.

Yikes.

Not good, Microsoft.  Not good.