Copyright issue?


pigonpie44

New Member
About 6 months ago while freelancing at an agency I designed this logo, I had signed a contract so all intellectual property is with the agency I designed it for or company its self.

It is an altered version of druk, with some letters being cut and stretched.


Screen Shot 2019-11-29 at 21.13.44.png


About 1 month ago I designed this logo while working directly for another client. It is a mix of different scanned letterpress typefaces, no letters have been altered its just a mix.

Screen Shot 2019-11-29 at 21.21.01.png

Without knowing it at the time I had almost copied myself and the first agency arn't too happy about it.

In my opinion the 2 logos arnt a copy of one another. The rest of the brand is also very different.

2 brands can be seen here:
https://www.benjonesdesign.co.uk/

Does anyone have any advice on this situation? Is this a copyright issue?
Thanks
 

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Wardy

Well-Known Member
There's no copyright issue as it's a freely available font. All that's happened is you've been 'caught out' using the same idea twice, nothing wrong with that. The only
issue you would have is if you used the same idea for something like 'Rebel Games' for instance.
 

pigonpie44

New Member
I don't see the copyright issue, the agency does. Yes its a similar idea, the brands look completely different and they are in completely different sectors.

I don't see what they would have copyright over, using different cuts of type next to one another?

The agency has now called me out to my client, my client now whats to change almost everything, it's a joke.
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
In all honesty, there is no copyright issue at all and as you say, it's just a similar idea.
It's a bit like saying drop shadows are copyrighted?

I'd just think that it's a similar approach and on trend as I've seen this done quite a bit recently.
Even that harks back to mixing different typefaces together in old style letterpress printing which I did myself back in college.

How do you mean "called me out to my client"?
 

pigonpie44

New Member
The agency emailed my client, saying something along the lines of 'This is a copyright issue, you will need your designer to change this work or else'.

My client is a small charity coming into their busest time of year, they don't need to feel like they could be sued at any moment so have ask me either to change it or for them to have their money back.

How would you react to this?
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
So you're not working with the agency? Is it a thing where they've contacted you/your client to complain?
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
There is zero copyright issue here.
If you do a search, you can download some very similar fonts where there are mixed weights of type.
I've also seen it done elsewhere as very little in design is new.
I've even seen recently the same approach to animating the letters by stretching them.

I think the problem comes with the chances of it soiling your relationship with your client but if they've approached your client then I'm sure that amounts to slander.
 

pigonpie44

New Member
While working at the first agency the CD would send me other people work she would take off pinterest to copy the colour palette...

The agency then said I copied a colour that I used in my development work for rebel tech (this colour wasn't used in the final work), they then sent the development work to my client saying that we couldn't use this colour. My client doesn't what to get involved so I've now changed the colour.

I can't work out if I what to be angry or laugh?
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
Oh FFS!

Cadbury's have been trying to copyright Pantone 2685C for years and they haven't managed to do it.
Sounds like the CD has a bit of an axe to grind?

They shouldn't really be contacting your client unless their accusations have substance which it sounds like they don't.
They run the risk of getting themselves in trouble.

I'd just keep your client sweet and tell them that your former CD has mental issues and that she's stalking you.

I can't work out if I what to be angry or laugh?
I see what you mean.
It's almost laughable but you have to ask yourself why she's doing this?

The fact that they're letterpress/woodblock type just adds to your argument.
There are many Designers and artists that do just that style of work.
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
No you're not!

I had a similar thing with the boss of a company I used to work at.
I allowed them to (informally) use some of my old, unused illustrations for some of their products.

Short story is that I left after a disagreement but he then contacted me to tell me to take the illustrations down from my website.
(I think he was a little bitter). ;)

I just told him that I owned the rights to them and also those of many others on his products and they predated my employment there.
I also informed him that the was no "designs and inventions" clause in my contract.
I told him that I didn't mind him using them but not to bother me again.

I know for a fact that he must have got some legal advice as he was the kind of person that hated losing.
I could just imagine him bouncing off the glass walls of his office.

His name was Dick! :D
 

hankscorpio

Moderator
Staff member
No copyright issues here at all.

One is a font called druk - the other is scanned in from letterpress.

Next email back would be a polite fuck off.
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
He was!

I guess that's up to you?

I personally would as I'm a bit like that and I don't like things hanging over me and unresolved.
Thing is...You're not in any copyright violation in my opinion and they seem to be harassing you, involving your client and bringing your professionalism into question.
It sounds hard not to get angry about it.
However. Who likes conflict as things can get silly?

If you do I'd word it firmly but politely and put her right.
Say it's just your personal typographic style?
Maybe attach a new piece with the words "F@CK OFF!"? ;)
Maybe not? :D

I do a lot of isometric illustration and by its nature, one person's work can look a lot like another.
It's just the way it is but you can't copyright isometric projection illustration.

BTW. I just spent ten min on the web and found all these.

187599.png

AGP_Grotesque_mixed.png

details-anisettepetite1.png

HEADING-PRO-free-modern-fonts.jpg

mini_magick20141021-16370-1lfthwb.png.jpeg
 

hankscorpio

Moderator
Staff member
Were we separated at birth Hank? ;)
I hope so - I always wanted a witty sibling! Let's make it so!

But seriously - I'd be just emailing them back and saying that there's no copyright issue at all - and insert the name of a local solicitor to get in touch with.

You don't even have to do anything - just tell them any solicitors name and contact details. And say any further dealings would be done through them.

Trust me, you'll never hear from them again!
 
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