Popular image which doesnt appear protected under copyright

'Is it legal', 'can I do this' type questions and discussions.
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Jflynn
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Popular image which doesnt appear protected under copyright

Post by Jflynn » Fri Feb 22, 2013 8:19 am

Hi,

I'm new to the forum, so thanks in advance for any help you can offer.
Having a look through the copyright database, there appears that a very popular logo for a football club isn't there. Neither is it in the trademark database.

Does that mean I can use it on my products?

Many thanks

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AndyJ
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Post by AndyJ » Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:08 am

Hi Jflynn,
Copyright doesn't need to be registered, so there's no comprehensive database you can check to find out if something is protected or not. Really you have to assume that most images (which of course includes logos) are covered by copyright unless the owner has clearly made them available through a system like Creative Commons, or it is known that the author died more than 70 years ago.
Trademarks on the other hand do need to be registered to gain full protection, so if you have searched the IPO database and nothing has come up, it may be that the logo is not a trademark, in the UK at least.

Afternote. This answer ties in with your other question in the Copyright Basics forum.
Last edited by AndyJ on Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
Advice or comment provided here is not and does not purport to be legal advice as defined by s.12 of Legal Services Act 2007

Jflynn
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Post by Jflynn » Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:39 am

AndyJ wrote:Hi Jflynn,
Copyright doesn't need to be registered, so there's no comprehensive database you can check to find out if something is protected or not. Really you have to assume that most images (which of course includes logos) are covered by copyright unless the owner has clearly made them available through a system like , or it is known that the author died more than 70 years ago.
Trademarks on the other hand do need to be registered to gain full protection, so if you have searched the IPO database and nothing has come up, it may be that the logo is not a trademark, in the UK at least.
Thanks for your reply.

So in theory if I wanted to produce goods with a logo that hadn't been trademarked, I could go ahead?


Incidentally I'm not trying to do anything 'dodgy' quite the opposite, I want to make sure I'm well within the law before proceeding.

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AndyJ
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Post by AndyJ » Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:44 am

Hi Jflynn,
It would only be safe to do so if you are sure the copyright in the logo has ended. Practically speaking that means the logo would have had to have been created well over a hundred years ago, unless it is known that the artist who created it died more than 70 years ago.
An alternative might be to try and find the current owner of the copyright and obtain permission to use the logo in the way you mention.
Advice or comment provided here is not and does not purport to be legal advice as defined by s.12 of Legal Services Act 2007

Jflynn
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Post by Jflynn » Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:53 am

AndyJ wrote:Hi Jflynn,
It would only be safe to do so if you are sure the copyright in the logo has ended. Practically speaking that means the logo would have had to have been created well over a hundred years ago, unless it is known that the artist who created it died more than 70 years ago.
An alternative might be to try and find the current owner of the copyright and obtain permission to use the logo in the way you mention.
Surprisingly, since we're dealing with football clubs I believe the logo is in fact 140 years old. I will be contacting the club regarding licensing though.

Thanks for your help.

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Post by typonaut » Sat Feb 23, 2013 5:56 pm

Jflynn wrote: Surprisingly, since we're dealing with football clubs I believe the logo is in fact 140 years old. I will be contacting the club regarding licensing though.
I'd be surprised if the logo has not been redrawn (several times) in that period.
Any comment on this forum is just banter, it is not legal advice.

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