What is design copyright?
Designers are concerned about how to protect their rights to the developed projects and models. Like any other intellectual property, design developments are also protected by copyright. However, they have their own characteristics.
Let’s look at the nuances of design copyright and talk about how these rights can be protected from competitors and ill-wishers.
So, design activity is a creative work, the result of which is an object of intellectual property and is protected by copyright.
What happens if you post your designs? Authors always post their work together with a special copyright sign. Thus, they provide protection to their intellectual property. For example, having placed drawings of your developments in a newspaper, you must indicate the letter “c” in a circle (copyright sign), the author’s full name and the year the design was created. This design can be a winning piece of evidence in a copyright dispute. However, do not forget that the situation changes if the project was sold in advance.
An interesting issue is the position of design copyright during order execution.
In the case when the design was developed to order and was paid in advance, then the designer loses his copyright. In this situation, the right to dispose of the intellectual property belongs exclusively to the customer. Under such conditions, the author of the design cannot independently post without prior agreement in any sources or use the sold materials for other purposes. In addition, the law protects the individual’s right to privacy and confidentiality. Therefore, designs and projects regarding the planning of housing also cannot be highlighted by the author without the consent of the customer.
How to coordinate the author’s capabilities and rights during the sale of his work?
So, as we have already said, by signing an agreement on the sale of his design developments, the author is deprived of copyright and a number of opportunities regarding his object.
However, there is one important point. While the contract between the customer and the author is being laid down, it is possible to indicate the designer’s rights to the material being sold. Thus, after the sale, you will be able to use your developments to a certain extent. Rarely, when people who made an order for the design of a living space agree to this. There are times when in such transactions the terms of the possible use of developments are indicated. That is, a designer can take photos or drawings at the construction stage, but have visual results, and even more so he has no right to use them. This would be considered a violation of your privacy rights.
How to carry out a design project without violating other people’s rights?
Let’s talk about a very hot issue today. The design can be different: for clothes, building, interior, accessories, cars, etc. But what is in great demand and interest today? Of course, this is the Internet. How many beautiful sites, pages, online stores. It is clear that someone created them or ordered such a design.
Many designers make one mistake that becomes fatal. They use materials to create a site that are already under copyright protection. That is, designers create their own intellectual property objects using others. Remember not to do this! Especially if you are doing custom work. After all, the first thing you do is set up your employer. Let’s take a look at an illustrative example.
You receive a profitable order for the creation and design of an online store, which is aimed at selling paintings and photo frames. Without thinking for a long time, you go to the Internet and find there a couple of interesting backgrounds and fonts, download them and create something interesting. Where is the mistake? The fact that the use of such materials may require an appropriate license. Even though these fonts and backgrounds are publicly available and free, that doesn’t mean it’s legal to use them.
What could happen? After a time after the completion and transfer of the project, the customer can call you and inform you that a lawsuit has been filed against him due to copyright infringement. Thus, you expose not only yourself, but also the owner of this or that purchased intellectual property.
What is the right thing to do? There can be two options. In the first case, you may not immediately realize your mistake, but after the end of the contract. This is how a dilemma arises: to fix the problem or to remain silent. In a situation where you remain silent, the customer may find himself in the position indicated above and begin to demand from you some kind of explanation and solution to the problem. At the same time, do not forget that you will definitely ruin your reputation. If you try to fix the error, things can be better. Call the customer and explain that one very important point has been missed. Say that in order to avoid potential problems, it would be best to buy a special license, the presentation of which will protect both you and the customer from litigation.
The second option may arise at the stage of creating a design project. The correct solution is to deal with the problem as soon as it appears. In order for you to legally use elements for your project, there are three ways, namely:
- Subscribe to newsletter . One of the common buying options today is to subscribe to an entire store, channel, or site. In this case, the author does not take payment for a separate object, he requires the consumer to subscribe for a certain amount to his sources, where you can get all his created materials.
- Tag the author when using his objects . There are situations when authors do not require monetary payment for the use of their materials. It is enough for them to leave the copyright sign during the publication of the project, in which their author’s developments are present. However, please note that the customer may strongly oppose the presence of copyright marks on the project created for him.
- Buy the item you want . Most often, authors sell their objects and copyrights to other users for a certain amount. This is the easiest way.
What should be done before using other elements in the project?
So, based on the above, it becomes clear that it is very easy to make a mistake during the creation of a design project. To avoid these problems, do the following:
- Set the author of the element you are going to use.
- Contact him and find out if he gives permission to use objects.
- At the time of obtaining a license, read the license agreement in detail.
- If the purchase of materials requires a certain cash payment, then make it.
- Transfer the obtained copyright to your customer. Indeed, in the event of a dispute, the author of the objects will contact the owner of the site (channel or store), and not you.
Rules for registration and registration of copyright for design
In order to facilitate your work during registration and registration of copyrights for design, you can turn to highly qualified specialists of the Wise Group for help at any time. With our help, you can get professional services as soon as possible.
Of course, first of all, you need to prepare a preliminary list of documents. These include
- artwork in electronic format;
- detailed information about the author of the design sample (name, address of residence, date of birth);
- clearly formulated and unique name of the intellectual property object;
- a document indicating and confirming the exact date of creation of the design object;
- small description (several sentences), characteristics of the object.
As a general rule, the term of state registration of copyright is from 2 to 3 months. The registration document (the corresponding Certificate) must be issued by a state body, namely the State Intellectual Property Service of Ukraine, which is located in Kiev.
So, let’s discuss another equally important issue. Who can register a design copyright? As you know, registration subjects can be:
- Independent designer as an individual.
- If the design was invented by a certain group of people, then several authors can claim equal rights regarding the object.
- In a situation where the designer is one of the employees of a certain company (legal entity), and the intellectual property object was created according to his duties, then all copyrights will belong to the legal entity. This copyright registration is titled “service work”.
Registration of copyright for a design is a rather complicated procedure that requires special knowledge and practical experience. This is why many designers turn to intellectual property experts for help.
If you also decided to obtain an official Certificate of Registration, then we are ready to help you protect your rights! Our specialists have completed more than 2500 successful transactions, so you don’t have to worry about the quality of the work done.
Get a free consultation! Just leave a request on our official website and we will contact you shortly.
Interesting? Find out more! For example, what features has photo copyright in social networks .
Position: Lawyer in the field of intellectual property
Work experience: 8 years. Candidate of Legal Sciences.
Specialization: Deals with the protection and registration of intellectual property objects, writing claims and statements of claim. Registers objects in the customs register.
Rated 4.5 based on 690 replies