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Topic: Adapting logos to sell?  (Read 328 times)
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threehang
« on: October 09, 2008 11:17:03 AM »

I was wondering if it was illegal to put a logo on something and sell it, with the logo being sort of redesigned in an different and unique way, but still clearly based on the original logo? Specifically, I want to use the Obama O/circle logo thing on teeshirts and stuff. (But to be clear, it would be done in an artistic way; i wouldn't just paint the logo as it is onto a teeshirt or something.) Also, if I <i>weren't</i> going to sell it, it'd be fine right? If i just gave it to a friend or wore it myself?
http://store.barackobama.com/v/vspfiles/photos/RS29659-2.jpg

Thanks for helping!
« Last Edit: January 05, 2009 06:29:27 AM by jungrrl - Reason: Please do not hotlink images - thanks! » THIS ROCKS   Logged

CraftyChef
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« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2008 03:45:42 PM »

It depends on how much like the current logo it ends up being. There's "inspired by" then there's pretty-close-to-copying. We can't tell which one yours would be.

If you were just going to do one for yourself and a friend, well go for it.
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kellyhelene
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« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2008 08:30:08 AM »

I can't imagine anyone having a problem with you making your own stuff, for yourself and friends.  I made myself a bag with the logo on it to carry registration forms when I went door to door, and a sweatshirt with it when I was starting canvasing in the primaries and his site was sold out of everything.  Even the paid campaign staff loved it.

However, as someone who has been volunteering since the primaries, I've seen a LOT of scorn heaped on people who used the Obama logo just to make money for themselves.  The official stuff, and even most of the unofficial stuff, is going to support the campaign.  The attitude seems to be that, unless you're donating your profits to the campaign, using Obama's logo and image to make money is taking it right from his campaign, where it could have been put to use for ads, literature, travel, etc. 

I highly doubt they'd go after you or you'd incur any legal repercussions (although it does border on infringement), but it strikes me as pretty shady, and you'll most likely get a lot of feedback to that effect.  The most vicious thread on our local Obama email list was in reaction to someone posting their Obama goods who wasn't donating any of the proceeds to the campaign.
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threehang
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2008 08:37:39 AM »

Thanks so much! All your advice makes a lot of sense :]
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