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Apr 24, 2008

I do a little freelance work as a graphic designer outside of my fulltime job. A while ago, I was asked to do a "touchup" on a logo for a client, which consisted of taking a raster logo and vectorizing it, making barely-noticeable modifications. This is something I'd done for him one time prior. I'd worked with the guy before, and he was apparently artistically competent, so I had no reason to believe he was simply finding existing logos online, and sending them to me to fix. Which he was, it turns out, actually doing. I found out via Google image search, which, admittedly, I should've done before.

Despite being ethically terrible, this might not be doing any real damage...except, in this case, he has TRADEMARKED a plagiarized logo for use on a product he intends to sell. I'm not sure what to do about it. I obviously feel terrible for helping this guy gently caress over a fellow designer. I hate that he'll be using a stolen logo for commercial purposes.

What should I do? I've tried tracking down the original designer of the logo to let him know, but it has proven difficult thus far. I'd prefer not to share the logo publicly, as you might understand, but if you're good at internet sleuthing, and want to make the world a little safer for designers, send me a PM with your email and I'll send it to you.

Thanks, all.


Part of Everything
Feb 1, 2005

He clenched his teeh and walked out of the study

All you can do at this point is keep trying to find the original designer. Since it's their property, it'll be their prerogative on how they decide to handle the plagiarisation. As a designer as well, if you find them I'm sure they'll be very appreciative that you took the time to do so.

johnny sack
Jan 30, 2004

One day, this team will play to their expectations...

Just not this year..

Post it on a social media site. Post your entire story if you wish, but at the very least post the image and see if anyone can come up with the designer. 6 degrees of separation and all that.

Nov 23, 2012

Do you have any kind of formal business relationship with this "client?" If you have even the most basic boilerplate contract then there should be a line about ownership of provided images somewhere in there. If you aren't using any contracts for your freelance work then expect things like this (and much worse) to happen semi-frequently.

Out of curiosity, did you ever attempt to inform the client that the work was copyright protected? Personally, before going to the online smear route, I would try to be sure that the client copied the logo himself and wasn't ripped off by some other freelancer / an employee who didn't understand copyright law. Though I agree that contacting the original designer is necessary if the trademark process is already underway.

May 24, 2003

edit: oops

Ramen Pride!
Jan 13, 2001

never say die

every posted:

TRADEMARKED a plagiarized logo for use on a product he intends to sell.

That was an incredibly idiotic move on his part. If you feel secure in your position and your friendship with the person you should inform them of their giant megalawsuit fuckup. And the waste of money trademarking it. Then explain the trademark system in America these days. Then if they are still listening to you, bring up copyright law.

This happens a LOT with small companies who don't want a graphic designer, but bully ahead.

*If he honestly trademarked someone else's trademarked work... HA oh boy. poo poo's gonna fly legally.

**If he still won't listen to you, sever. The resulting company-being-destroyed backlash can be hell.

May 29, 2008

Ramen Pride! posted:

*If he honestly trademarked someone else's trademarked work... HA oh boy. poo poo's gonna fly legally.

The other person's work may not be trade-marked, but it certainly is copyrighted. He's asking to eat poo poo pretty badly here.


Eggplant Wizard
Jul 8, 2005

i loev catte

God I wish we had a thread for legal questions

Oh wai-

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