You’ve worked hard on developing your business and more than likely have sought out a professional designer to help you brand your vision. The result was a fabulous logo that captured the very essence of your business and became the basis of all other collateral and business marketing tools. You love your logo. But did you know it might not really be yours at all?
What is a Copyright?
Most of us have heard the term “copyright”, but few actually know what that means or how it applies to our businesses. Copyright is a legal concept, endorsed by most governments, giving the creator of an original work exclusive rights. Copyright does not protect ideas, it only protects fixed elements such as literature, music, art, and design. Even if payment was given in exchange for the element, the rights will still remain with the creator. This copyright protection exists for Australia, Canada, The United States and all other countries covered by the International Copyright Agreement. To ensure your country is covered click here for the full list.
So What Exactly Does this Mean for Your Business and its Logo?
Essentially, unless both you and your designer have completed a “Copyright Transfer Form”, the designer of your logo owns the copyright to it. Even if the logo concept was your idea and you paid for the service, the designer will maintain full rights to it and you will have to ask for permission every time you wish to use the graphic. For some this might raise great concern.
As a graphic designer myself, in all logo quotations I provide I am sure to include this disclaimer ~ “I do not reserve rights to the design of your final logo (I reserve rights to the concepts you reject only). Your logo is yours to do as you please with”.
I have delivered this promise time and time again feeling quite confident in my guarantee. It wasn’t until a recent meeting with a lawyer that the topic of copyright came up. I would never renege on the promises I made for all past designs. But moving forward, I will be presenting my clients with a “Copyright Transfer Form” to protect all parties. I invite you to contact your designer and have them complete one as well for your own peace of mind.
If Boutique By Design created your logo and you would like to have us legally transfer the creative rights to you, please contact us.