I am sure you
have seen this too, but I am so surprised by embroidery digitizers who openly
sell designs that are obviously copyright infringement. Most recognizable are
things like Mickey Mouse ears, Hello Kitty, or, recently, any of the characters
from Frozen. They may call the design
Mouse Ears or Kitty Cat, but the designs themselves are pretty darn close. If
push came to shove, there would be a lot of people in a lot of trouble.
Here is a good read by an embroidery digitizer who also has a law degree.
very aggressive in this area, understandably so. So how do you stay within the
law in regard to copyright? Be sure to read the licensing agreement.
You may have
noticed this disclaimer on AnntheGran.com when you download a design:
© Copyright by AnnTheGran
By licensing this design you agree to these terms: This design
is copyright protected by AnnTheGran and may not be distributed, altered or
unaltered in any format outside of AnnTheGran.com or directly from AnnTheGran.
Items with this design sewn onto the product may be sold commercially with
limitation. You must have written consent to mass market items using this
design. AnnTheGran will not be held liable for any monetary losses or
consequential damages as a result of using this design.
This article outlines what you can and cannot do
with copyrighted materials, including embroidery designs:
You may not:
copies of the digital embroidery software to either sell or give away
(no sharing with your friends)
- Post a
copy of the digital embroidery software on the internet for others to use
(no sharing with anyone else either)
- Modify the
digital embroidery software and sell it as your own
(no making changes and calling it your own design)
- Make a
copy of the digital embroidery pattern for your personal use
(backup copies are permitted if you purchased the design)
- Make more
than one end product for personal use or for sale from the digital
embroidery software (depending on the licensing agreement)
production is usually determined by the design provider. When in doubt whether
or not you can sell items you embroider, check with the manufacturer. Producing
a spring line for a big box store— no, but selling a few at a local craft show—
perhaps. It all depends on the agreement you make with the vendor when you
purchase the design.