Nobody but the owner can tell you it is "allowed." If you do it without the owner's permission, the owner can sue you for trademark or copyright infringement if it finds out about it. The court would then decide if what you did infringed, based on all the facts.
If you use images of Waldo and other recognizable features of the books, then yes, it would infringe the copyright. Getting permission might be difficult to track down the owner. The book publisher might have the rights, or the author might have retained them. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain...Read more »
Our products were sold exclusively by a large fortune 500 company under a trademarked brand name. They have recently stopped selling our products in lieu of creating their own line. I'd like to know if, in our marketing, we can say, [our product name] has been sold by [their company name] under the... Read more »
Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local intellectual property attorney to review all the facts of the situation and advise you if the large company might take any action against you if you do that.
A trademark can be registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office, with any of the states, or with foreign countries. You can easily check the databases of any of those to find out if it has been registered. But there is no requirement to register a trademark. Many famous trademarks have not...Read more »
A court would have to decide which elements of a trademark are significant, and if the overall impression of the other design infringes the trademark. If the trademark owner believes that design creates a likelihood of confusion with its trademark, or if the infringer's design is trying to imitate...Read more »
i work at a bar, and created an image of ohio using the logos of the breweries in ohio. i want to be allowed to sell the image on shirts but dont know how to go about doing so. i do not know how to find if images are copyrighted or trademarked and therefore am unsure about my next step. any help is... Read more »
The only way is to conduct an image search via the USPTO's database of registered trademarks. Images are a bit tougher to research than word marks, because there's a bit of subjective interpretation in the description of the designs and their potential similarity to other registered marks. With...Read more »
It is possible, but generally not recommended. If you claim only the words, and not the look of the mark, the registration will not apply to the look. Also, in order to obtain and maintain a trademark, you have to use it. There may be limited circumstances where you would want to do this. You...Read more »
Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local intellectual property or trademark attorney to review all the facts and advise you whether it could be an infringement or not, and what are your options. There are significant penalties for trademark infringement.
I came up with an idea for a mobile app and looked online to see if there was anything similar in the works. There is, and the person has trademarked the name and the general idea. But, it's not 100% identical. Their idea seems to be broader in scope than mine. If I come up with a different name... Read more »
It depends on whether your use of that same mark could be confusing to consumers. If so, you could be liable for triple damages, and could have to pay GM's legal fees if a court determines that you infringed. GM has enough money to fund legal action against you. Use the Find a Lawyer tab and...Read more »
She is making shirts and wants my artwork on them. We are combining businesses and it'll be 50/50. It's fair but if this doesn't work out in the long run how do I protect my artwork and business name? Will we both be able to produce the shirts still afterwards? Will she end up with rights to the... Read more »
You are prudent to seek assistance for your business relationship and protection of your artwork - before you begin. Use the Find a Lawyer tab and contact a local business attorney who can advise you and answer questions about business formation and copyright protection.
I am creating a new company and was browsing Etsy for logos. I stumbled upon a premade logo that is being sold with a company name. It is not one of a kind, therefore can be sold to other people as well. If it has not been copyrighted/trademarked/registered yet, am I able to use this logo and... Read more »
There are an awful lot of issues here that can't be addressed without more facts, but here are some initial thoughts. First off, any copyright would be held by the designer of the logo. Presumably, if you purchase the logo from the designer, then it would come with at least a license to use the...Read more »
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