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"Stealing" Logos


hjwii

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As I read thru these boards, I often see people asking if a logo or font had been stolen. Usually, it deal with a fantasy foortball or hockey team.

So, tell me, for I am confused on the protocol:

1) if I belong to a fantasy league (which, if I ever do, just shoot me), it would be wrong for me to copy a logo I see on this board or any other?

2) is it illegal, or just not so nice to use said logos?

3) if one has created a logo, and posted it, and not copyrighted it, does that not just open the door for anyone to use/take it?

4) and if it is used, why the ill will? Is it lack of recognition? Lack of respect for not asking?

I'm not saying it's okay to use anyone's logos. I am just curious why it seems to create so much animosity and bad feelings when someone sees a "stolen" logo. So, please dont attack me; rather enlighten me...

hjwii

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According to the law, as soon as a drawing is finished, it is copyrighted if you will. I think trademark for a logo might be better, but I'm not so clear on that. I personally would never use someone else's logo without permission, but that's me.

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According to the law, as soon as a drawing is finished, it is copyrighted if you will. I think trademark for a logo might be better, but I'm not so clear on that. I personally would never use someone else's logo without permission, but that's me.

Actually, you can sue without registration under the relatively new copyright regime. You just have more to prove than if you had registered (i.e., you have to show that you (1) actually authored the logo (2) at an earlier date than the subsequent user).

Trademark is harder because you must have used the mark in connection with provision of goods or services in order for trademark rights to attach. You can register a trademark or file an intent to use application, but the bottom line is there must be use in commerce.

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Actually, I believe that (but have no proof yet) that if you use some one elses created logo for your own profit then you can be sued, I believe that you can be sued even if you are using the logo for your own personal use. I am not sure of that, but I think that can be the case. Personally, I wouldn't sue if some one used my work for a fantasy team.

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Actually, I believe that (but have no proof yet) that if you use some one elses created logo for your own profit then you can be sued, I believe that you can be sued even if you are using the logo for your own personal use. I am not sure of that, but I think that can be the case. Personally, I wouldn't sue if some one used my work for a fantasy team.

It's still possible to be sued and found liable when using someone else's logo for personal use. However, personal/non-profit/minimal use by the defendant allows a defense of "fair use," requiring the judge to weigh 4 factors. Two of those factors are the percentage taken or used by the defendant (i.e., 100% if the whole logo is taken without any change) and the nature of the use (commercial, for profit vs. private, non-profit).

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Actually, you can sue without registration under the relatively new copyright regime. You just have more to prove than if you had registered (i.e., you have to show that you (1) actually authored the logo (2) at an earlier date than the subsequent user).

The copyright office sez:

Do I have to register with your office to be protected?

No. In general, registration is voluntary. Copyright exists from the moment the work is created. You will have to register, however, if you wish to bring a lawsuit for infringement of a U.S. work. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section ?Copyright Registration.?

Why should I register my work if copyright protection is automatic?

Registration is recommended for a number of reasons. Many choose to register their works because they wish to have the facts of their copyright on the public record and have a certificate of registration. Registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney's fees in successful litigation. Finally, if registration occurs within 5 years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section ?Copyright Registration? and Circular 38b, Highlights of Copyright Amendments Contained in the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA), on non-U.S. works.

I?ve heard about a ?poor man?s copyright.? What is it?

The practice of sending a copy of your own work to yourself is sometimes called a ?poor man?s copyright.? There is no provision in the copyright law regarding any such type of protection, and it is not a substitute for registration.

http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/faq-general.html#register

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