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Logo Thieves

Discussion in 'General Chit-Chat' started by Bigdawg, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. Bigdawg

    Bigdawg Just Me

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    I've been watching Jeff Fisher's facebook posts for a few days now... a LOT of logos have been ripped off by logo garden (not linking to the jerks - just add a dot com). Here's a lil rundown.

    If you've used these guys... odds are you bought a logo that wasn't theirs to sell... if you design logos - watch out...

    It amazes me that they think they can just get away with it... or maybe they have made their money and all the C&D letters will make them just go away...
     
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  2. Kyle Blue

    Kyle Blue Member

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    This kind of stuff makes me want to throw up.
     
  3. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Image misuse in logos is so widespread that I think copyright laws will eventually be rewritten.

    Here's just one example of a generic tree I have available online for royalty-free licensing and the Google search for the same image. Dozens of companies are using it as their logo although none of them can claim it as theirs.
     
  4. ucmj22

    ucmj22 Very Active Member

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    at least they are all crappy renditions. Its crazy how easy it is to spot the errors in color, balance kerning, typeface...etc. They are just bad...
     
  5. Salmoneye

    Salmoneye Very Active Member

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    Fred, although these companies could not claim ownership or copyright to that portion of the logo, if they paid to use the image under most standard licensing would they not be able to use it in their logo? Please note that I am not defending anything here just a bit confused and trying to educate myself.
     
  6. ucmj22

    ucmj22 Very Active Member

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    They could use it, They just wouldn't be able to protect it with a trademark.
     
  7. Salmoneye

    Salmoneye Very Active Member

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    Thank you, that is what I thought but then Fred's post had me 2nd guessing.
     
  8. ucmj22

    ucmj22 Very Active Member

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    and its just tacky. if you're looking to build brand recognition,it doesn't help to have your icon being used for other things with no legal recourse to stop it.
     
  9. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Sorry about that. No they can use the image but if a competitor decides to also use it, then they'll find out that they have no claim to the artwork.
     
  10. HaroldDesign

    HaroldDesign Very Active Member

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    Oh my word. These sites are pathetic. I think they get away with it because those who want their "image" represented by a logo from sites like these don't have business models that put them, well, anywhere.
     
  11. Malkin

    Malkin Very Active Member

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    I see that one quite a bit around my area (not my doing), didn't realize it was yours originally :omg:
     
  12. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Yes, it's included in our Plotter Art™ Originals collection. The collection has sold over 10,000 copies and also has selected images from it available at FotoSearch, Shutterstock, Dreamstime, Fotolia, Artzooks and our own ExpressClipart.
     
  13. signswi

    signswi Very Active Member

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    Re: above, most "standard licensing" agreements on stock sites specifically forbid use of the stock in logos.
     
  14. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I think though with some of the "customers" that get stock images don't really read (and/or understand) the agreement and use it anyway. Kinda like if you were to get a font from dafont. Most are ok for just personal use, but not for commercial use. I wonder how many have used them for commercial reasons, but still have the personal license?
     
  15. Locals Find!

    Locals Find! Very Active Member

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    Most stock photo/artwork sites grant you single seat licenses. Which means you can only use it on one product at a time i.e. a website, business card etc... if you wanted to use it as part of a logo you would need to purchase an extended license which are fairly pricey and you would be better off paying a logo designer at that point to design from scratch as even a really top notch designer would be far less than the license.
     
  16. ucmj22

    ucmj22 Very Active Member

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    once I used a stock image on a semi wrap I was doing for a fleet, and after reading the licensing terms, I wasn't sure if I needed to purchase an extended license since I was "selling" the wraps and there was more than one of them. I called the the stock photo licensing department, and they were very helpful and informed me that I did not need to purchase an extended license because I was selling my design, of which the photo was only an element in. When in doubt I always recommend contacting the owner or licenser.
     
  17. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    I think you don't understand the term "single seat". It means you or any designated employee or contractor may use the art in projects you produce. It also means that you cannot put the art on a file server where 10 designers in your employ can use it ... which would be "multiple seats". But mostly it means that you can't put it on a website or in a catalog where clients can add it as an element to their jobs. An enhanced license usually comes into play when you want to produce a greater than normal amount of impressions like a garment or decal that will be used as a catalog item or part of an advertisement that will be reproduced in mass media.

    In other words, you can use a piece of art or a photo in 100 different jobs and it's okay but you can't use it in one job that will be reproduced 100,000 times.
     
  18. signswi

    signswi Very Active Member

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    Which is more or less my point -- they're in violation of the agreement so not only will a company that uses stock as part of a logo not be able to trademark it as it's non-unique, they're also on the hook for legal action at any time if the stock artist or stock house finds out and decides to take action.

    Not really a great way to run a business. It's as dumb of a mistake as using illegal software or accepting copyright violating work. Not worth putting your business at risk over.
     
  19. Locals Find!

    Locals Find! Very Active Member

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    My explanation of the Single seat license was taken from bigstock.com where I purchase my stock images. Possibly their use of the term is mis-guided. They restrict my use to one product at a time under their single seat license. If I make a postcard from an image and then a business card they require I purchase a second license for the second use.
     
  20. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    That would be a single use license and I see it in their license. It seems to me that such a restriction would be a surprise to most buyers and result in them going elsewhere for their stock images. That would be my advice to you. I just skimmed the agreements used by Shutterstock, Dreamstime and Fotolia and none of them limit their licensees to a single use.
     
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