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Ling Lee
Ling Lee, at Digital Marketing and Personal Branding

Legal

Can I use statistics from another website or source without breaking copyright laws?

Does copying statistics from a website or source constitute as plagiarism when making an infographic? Where does the law draw the line?

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3 Answers

Nerissa Atkinson

I might have spent too much time around Legal and Compliance teams in my old corporate life, but I would always include references when using statistics, particularly when trying to prove a story - whether it be blog posts, presentations or infographics. I also know from experience that it can be really frustrating finding a great 'fact' on a beautiful infographic, only to fall down the rabbit hole in trying to find the original source and deciding in the end it's safer not to use it. 

A good designer should be able to find a way of unobtrusively including footnotes - this is an example which has very small reference numbers and the full list of resources at the bottom. In the end, an infographic really has to be a useful tool both in its visual display of information, but also by giving access to the original research to allow further investigation.

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Thivaharan Thuraiappah

Thivaharan Thuraiappah , Principal | Xero Certified Advisor | Xero Add-ons Consultant at LALI Business Consulting Pty Ltd

I agree with Bridget here. As long as you reference your sources there should not be any issues. What you will be presenting in the infographics is the summary of your research or findings and giving reference to the sources of your research.  

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Bridget Holland

Include a list of sources at the bottom and you should be OK.
If someone posts data on a publicly visible website and you quote with reference to that website, how can it be plagiarism?

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