How to Avoid Copyright Infringement with T-Shirts?

The time has come where everyone is looking forward to buying those free-size T-shirts which they can wear during the scorching heat of summer to protect themselves from the hot weather. This is the peak time when your business must taste the joy of having a large clientele who will be highly interested in wearing those brilliant designs of yours. As much as the material and quality of the clothing matters, the design does too. You need to be extra careful while printing designs on your T-shirts. 


You must be battling with the idea of how to avoid copyright infringement with T-shirts design. With the increase in the number of clothing brands and businesses, it is quite impossible to keep track of the legal designs. Are you confused what constitutes as legal? To learn about it, you must learn the difference between copyright and trademark.


What is Copyright?

Copyright is the right conferred upon the creative work of an individual and the right not to be published by others for a specific period, determined by the life of the author, and in addition to that from fifty to one hundred years after his death is the determined period of time.


What is a Trademark?

Trademarks are the right of the manufacturer that this product is the sole source of this company and is the trademark for goods or services. An example includes the sound of Nokia ringtone which no one can copy or use without the permission given by the company. Moreover, the symbol of Apple Inc. is also the trademark which cannot be used by any another company in order to generate any form of economic benefit.


Laws Related to Copyright and Trademark:

In most of the countries, laws recognize copyright and trademark rights equally. Copyright laws and trademark laws address two different purposes. The purpose of copyright is to support creativity and to provide an incentive to encourage creators to create original works for the public interest. Copyright protects original works such as photos, videos, movies, and music. It is important to note that, in the United States, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) only applies to copyright and does not apply to trademarks.


While the purpose of the Trademark Law is to protect consumers from harm, it prevents people, other than the owner, of the rights from using a trademark in a manner that would confuse consumers. Trademark law is concerned with the protection of trademark names, logos, written or other symbols that assist consumers in determining the origin of goods or services.


The Confusion Caused While Designing T-Shirts:

When you come out to design your T-shirts in a new manner, you might find it hard to decide what constitutes legal design and what doesn't. This article will discuss this issue in detail in order to help you out to the maximum level in this area.


Following the current trend, you might decide to use new memes which have been circulating the internet, or you decide to use some slogan of a brand or mold it into your own words to make it look attractive. You might also be considering printing out the faces of celebrities in order to attract their fans, hence, making a huge sale this summer. However, you must read this guide in order to save yourself from getting sued.


Infringement the Copyright Material of a Big Company:

You must have seen some local sellers selling t-shirts or material having Apple's logo on it, or you must have seen multiple cups or t-shirts with celebrities' faces. You see these sellers making a good amount of bucks, yet never getting caught or sued by these companies or public figures. It is true that only a few of them get caught. However, you should keep this in mind that mass adoption of such activity doesn't make it legal.


The act is still illegal, and any form of information to the respective authorities may result in the business getting blacklisted or even facing the steps of deregistration. If you are interested in finding out the ways of protecting yourself and your brand from such a danger, keep on reading this article.


How to Avoid Copyright Infringement with T-shirts?

There are multiple ways that you can use in order to save yourself from such inconveniences as mentioned above.


1. Get an Original Design:

Picking up the designs while abiding by the copyright laws is a difficult task. It is better to create your own design from scratch without taking any idea from any other material in order to avoid copyright issues at all cost. Through such a practice, you can keep yourself free from all the worries that might come while using other people’s ideas or material.


2. Know the Rules:

Flags and national symbols or material are free from copyright issues. You may use them on your material in order to attract your customer while abiding by the rules. However, avoid using faces of famous celebrities or characters. Such action will result in legal actions against you. However, it is legal to make a parody, until you are not too offensive. Therefore, always keep good care of such matter while making memes or parodies.


3. What Can Help You?

If you like someone’s quote and you are considering using it on your t-shirt, make sure you mention the person’s name on the side of the quote in small fonts in order to avoid the copyright issue. Such a step will prevent the person from suing you. Moreover, if we are considering pictures on the internet, you may find several websites on the internet which allows you to use the pictures while giving credit to those websites. You can always make use of those pictures and avoid the efforts of creative thinking for every t-shirt design.


There are several other methods which can be used to avoid the copyright infringement issue. However, the methods mentioned in this article must have fully answered your question of how to avoid copyright infringement with T-shirts.


The Voila Print has provided t-shirts printing services in USA and Canada for financial services, franchises, non-profits, and thousands of other businesses for over two decades. Contact us at (866)­ 942­-1677 to know more about the t-shirts printing.