Hi, I am a former teacher who specialised in Art and Craft. Creativity is so important in my life and over the years I have designed and made a variety of different things, but never commercially. Recently however, I've been thinking about starting a blog and maybe opening an online shop. On doing some research, I was surprised to discover that someone had taken out a copyright on a design almost identical to one of mine(based on a popular, traditional craft going back to the early 20th century and possibly earlier.) I'm not suggesting my design has been copied, it's not really my design anyway and lots of others are making very similar products!!! More likely it's just coincidence and we are 'like minds'.
The following is an from an article on copyright;
'Copyright can interfere with the best efforts of people to share and develop their work. These laws intend of course to credit the work of the artist-the genius that turns something ordinary into something remarkable. But the line between ordinary and indeistinct, and judging what is a mere useful object and what is copyrightable variation is difficult at best. Who decides if similar items are a product of infringement or parallel development.... or mere coincidence.'
I'd love to hear your views!
Hehe...yep it's certainly confusing Karen. It doesn't worry me personally, I don't have a shop and as yet haven't made up my mind about selling but found the subject interesting, having had a good look at the various ways of online selling and what was out there. I make all sorts of things and usually give them away to friends and family as gifts. If someone asks me to make something eg. a quilt, I usually charge a little for the fabric or if I make curtains or cushions they provide the fabric. This is because I'm self taught(books and trial and error), so I've never had the confidence to charge. I have, however, received some lovely gifts in appreciation. I've done short courses locally in things like fabric printing and a wonderful lampwork glass bead making course with Barbara Mason, for my own enjoyment, and it's wonderful therapy!
Karen Jinks / Kala said:yup a creative commons license isn't restrictive - it's giving permission for others to use the design under certain conditions - the only way to protect a design (as in an actual made product) is to trademark or patent it which is expensive. Creative commoms is a way of sharing. So if this other person is offering a creative commons license then you have nothing to worry about at all (if i've understood things correctly!)
the license I was talking about for branded items such as mario and disney is not the same thing - you have to purchase the right to resell these items for you own products, Disney will sell a license (ie the right to copy) to people - Bombus for instance has purchased one to use their old comics on her decoupage chairs and bowls.
It is all very confusing!