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Trademark (For Personal Use)

Trademark (For Personal Use)

Postby Gwenoir » Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:14 pm

@"Diana" @"galled"

If I wanted to make a siggie pet shop in the personal shops forum, would I be able to make pets of trademarked characters, as long as all the art is done myself? Where do derivative works fall in?

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Local time: Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:38 am


Re: Trademark (For Personal Use)

Postby galled » Sun Apr 12, 2020 1:18 pm

Artwork of trademarked and copyrighted characters (or anything) are subject to copyright and trademark law.

To clarify, a picture can be copyrighted (drawn by someone or done as a work for hire) and since you're doing your own artwork of a trademarked character, you'd own the copyright for that, but you'd run into licensing issues. (Note that many brands don't mind fan art, etc., but it needs to be looked at on a case by case basis.)

The concept of a "shop" is an exchange for money--which I understand you're not looking to do, would make it an issue. If you give away your art (of copyrighted pictures if you owned a picture you purchased and/or trademarked characters you drew), there would be no issue.

I'm guessing that from your question, you're looking for some sort of return or compensation for your work. Perhaps an "exchange" or trade area would fit your needs? That would avoid this first problem.

So if you exchanged your trademarked/fan art for other art work for example, I think it would be fine.

Now, the stickler issue is trading for Windlyn items or feathers (wings would clearly be a legal liability)--it's a gray area and although the likelihood of legal action is slim, it's probably best to avoid any complications by not allowing it. The old slippery slope comes to mind because I think we can all agree that any lawsuits, even if you did nothing wrong, need to be avoided!

Hope this helps!
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