17 posts

What does "free for personal use" mean?

Mar 15, 2011 at 02:32

I generally avoid downloading fonts that are marked with the "Free for Personal Use" indicator, especially if the license in the download file offers no additional information, but there are a few I've been eying up and I'm hoping someone can explain what "Free for Personal Use" means. I tend to use fonts in free web graphics (like icons or wallpapers) or as the covers of free ebooks or in the design of my personal site, which is completely non-commercial (I don't even accept donations); in short, I use fonts in activities that I consider personal hobbies. Would you say these things are "personal uses"? Or are they disqualified purely on the fact that other people download the results of my endeavors and do heaven knows what with them?

Mar 15, 2011 at 11:23

no personal branding, no resell, ... hobbies sounds like personal use to me.

Edited on Mar 16, 2011 at 09:28 by vinz

Mar 15, 2011 at 12:13

Imagine that you plan to make icons with "free for personal use" fonts.
You make the icons, and release them on the web
Now imagine that someone from an evil company (mtv, nike, total,...) finds your icons on the internet, and decides to use them for their evil company.

The least you can do on your "read me" file (or on your website), is to give the original font name, to write that the font is not yours, and to write that the font is free for personal use only, and give the original URL where you can download the font and read more infos.

Mar 15, 2011 at 12:19

As long as you don't profit in any way (or allow others to profit) from the font usage, I consider it to be personal use.

Mar 15, 2011 at 13:26

If you don't want to use ones with personal use, I'd leave this site xD

Apr 03, 2012 at 08:57


what if I like one font and want to use it on banner for my company (I'm selling some stuff) - directly I won't profit from selling the font, but the font will be a part of my site's image, so does it count as personal use or it's business and I can't use that font?

Apr 03, 2012 at 09:46

That is commercial use. Best to contact the designer.

Apr 03, 2012 at 09:47

Thank you for the reply.

Apr 03, 2012 at 12:13

If it's for a company, it's business of course.

Apr 03, 2012 at 21:38

I'm wondering something similar.

I'm currently writing a fictional novel. Each chapter is (obviously) numbered, and there are some fonts on here I would like to use for the chapter titles. Should I stay away from the "personal use" fonts for this, since I will be selling the book? :3 Thanks.

Apr 03, 2012 at 21:39

Never mind. xD I feel dumb.

Apr 03, 2012 at 21:52

If you really like to use the font, make a donation. It is only a (very) few Dollars/Euro and everybody happy.

Jul 08, 2013 at 10:44

I would like to add to the amount of questions by asking... what if i have a youtube channel (a none paid one) and was making a banner for my channel am i able to use a "free for personal use" font? cause i make no money what so ever and no one can steal my banner image (unless going into web page code)

Jul 08, 2013 at 12:05

As long as that youtube channel does not show any link at all to any page that has a commercial intent, which includes the youtube home page in your case, that would be personal use. Read 'personal' as 'private'. Personal being only by yourself, private being only for yourself as a person and without any commercial intent.

On 'stealing' your banner, as soon as someone visits your page there is a copy in his/her browser's cache. Even simpler, save page as ... complete.

Jul 08, 2013 at 13:43

thanks for the advice and just to clarify as long as the banner has no links in it then i am fine.

Jul 08, 2013 at 14:38

YouTube itself is a commercial site.
So, for me, a video on YouTube is a commercial activity. If you don't win money with it, be sure that some otherone win it.

But, to have a reliable answer, contact directly the author of the font you want.
He's the onlyone that can say if you can use hes font for your activity.

Jul 08, 2013 at 16:51

daveveej said  
thanks for the advice and just to clarify as long as the banner has no links in it then i am fine.

You misunderstood. I wrote: ... As long as that youtube channel does not show any link at all to any page that has a commercial intent, ...
That means the entire page on which the banner appears. As soon as anything on your youtube channel page shows up that has any commercial intent it is commercial use. A clickable youtube logo that links to is such a thing. As is any othe clickable form of advertising such as banners, flash ads and so on.

Personal/private use is when you create your own personal website without any form of advertising on it. and are still available, grab one and embed your youtube stuff in that site.

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