Hello all! I'm a graphic artist to be and I was hoping to find out as much as possible on the subject of Copyrights in the context of graphic design (excluding photography, I leave that for later) both generally and also more specifically about Fonts. I was hoping someone could provide a good source/website, the more official and the clearer it is, the better
-->> Regarding EU laws <<--
Additionally I also have a specific question regarding fonts. Inspiring oneself of other fonts is of course permissible and unavoidable. The question is, how far can we go before infringing on copyrights? Say there's a really nice font I'd like to use but can't find the 150€ I would need to do so. As designer surely I can then just make a font of my own based on the first one, but to what extent? If I vectorize a letter and move say, 3-4 points around, I end up with a new shape (assuming I've moved them more than just a pixel or two but not that much that it looks obviously different), but where are the (clear) lines not to cross? (avoiding any "grey area" as much as possible). Because I often see two almost identical fonts from different designers, and for example one is the "same" as the other only with added "serifs". And to me I find it normal, I don't find myself thinking its a ripoff in anyway.
Thanks a lot for the help!
It can now be argued that opening up a commercial font in a font design program (such as FontLab), copying the outline to the template or mask layer and redrawing the letter to match the shape of the original is a breach of copyright law.
More food for thought: http://www.wipo.int/treaties/en/ip/berne/
A typeface design, the shape of the letterforms, falls under artistic work and as such the designer automatically owns the copyright. There is no need for registration.
If they develop a font that is very similar to an existing font they must be quite careful that all the design work is original: that every glyph is redrawn and that other software information (such as width metrics) is not based upon the original software 'code' of the font.
Bref: Do not use a font (ttf or otf).
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