[Clipart] Copyrighted material appearing on the website.

chovynz chovynz at gmail.com
Sun Mar 14 22:53:01 PDT 2010

On 15/03/2010 6:11 p.m., Oleg Koptev wrote:
> For sure this is theme for long disputes. Not always design (external 
> appearance) is copyrighted, but it's hard to tell where it is and 
> where it isn't. Sometimes it's clearly claimed at the label of stuff 
> (bottle of Coca-Cola), and sometimes only few lines are copyrighted 
> (design lines in automobiles). So I think better to avoid such 
> cliparts at the OCAL.
> --
> C уважением, Коптев Олег
> With respect, Oleg Koptev

(It sure is! :) )

Conversally, I would say that clipart of copyrighted designs (in the 
physical) are ok. If we stuck to a hard line like "No clipart of a 
copyrighted/recognisable brand of car" then we would have no clipart 
whatsoever of any technology since everything is patented, and we would 
have no clipart of any people without their express consent (which in 
many cases is impossible to get). "Clipart" is different to "Designs".

I brought up Bart being copyrighted because that is clear cut. Bart is 
2D artwork, that is clearly a copyrighted character. That one especially 
is that well drawn/traced and it breaks copyright. Anything on OCAL can 
be used for commercial purposes. Bart is a copyrighted drawing. Clipart 
is a drawing. Therefore there is no such thing as public domain Bart 
clipart, unless the copyright holders release Bart. Which is unlikely.

That reminds me of a question that's been nagging me: I have been,
slowly but surely, working on an SVG depicting of an old camera of
mine, a Pentax K1000, and the question rose to my mind whether not
writing the brand and camera model on the drawing would be enough to
avoid any copyright problems. I am trying to make it as photorealistic
as I can, but not writing the identifying texts and drawings (Asahi,
Pentax, K1000).

This would seem to be the different to bart. I say if you are making a 
clipart of technology (A photo/clipart/vector/painting of a 3D item in 
this physical world) then it's ok. The "design patents" are there to 
stop other people manufacturing actual products exactly the same, but 
are not there to stop photos/clipart/paintings to be made of those 
objects. Again, photorealistic cliparts of objects (without logos) are 
fine as I understand it.

Disclaimer : neither am I a copyright lawyer. But common sense says this 
to be true; a photo/clipart/painting of a physical object of technology 
does not break copyright. ("Copying" other drawings/clipart/paintings on 
those 3D objects are another matter entirely, which is why I suggest 
leaving off any logos; like "Pentax" or "Sony.")

Jon : Are you able to source some copyright lawyers, or write up 
something somewhere about this? This debate has been going on longer 
than I care to remember. Maybe this is a topic for another subject 
thread, yes? :)

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