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SARA MOON COPYRIGHT & TRADE MARK ISSUES
Text throughout this Web site is © John D Moulton
NO TEXT OR IMAGES MAY BE COPIED FROM ANY PAGE WITHIN THIS
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|| Copyright in General || Initial Protection || What Constitutes Infringement? ||
Of all the copyright questions and queries that arise, requests to use Sara Moon works within PSP Tutorials and Stationery. tubes etc., by far exceeds the rest.
The use of Sara Moon works as an integral part of PSP, Tubes and the like is acceptable provided that this is for non-commercial, not-for-profit use. The quality of the image used must not exceed 600 pixcels at its greatest length and the original resolution must not be greater than 100dpi. Further, the use of Sara Moon imagery is ONLY permitted where the words "© Sara Moon - www.sara-moon.com" are included as an integeral part of the image. This can be discrete but must be clearly readable though it need need not be a live link.
If a dedicated page of Sara Moon related works is create and provided a live link to http://www.sara-moon.com is provided on that page then, (once approved) a link to that page can be provided on the Sara Moon Web site Links Page.
Copyright relates to two-dimensional works such as the written word, artwork and design. It is a legal apparatus to protect authors and artists from those who would otherwise seek financial or other gain from the hard work of others, diluting or destroying the opportunities for profit owed to the actual owner. An originator can sell or license copyright to a third party and may of course choose to elect different third parties for different works.
An artwork is copyright to the originator without need of any kind of registration with any official body of any sort. This remains the case for 70 years beyond the originators death, as ownership can be and usually is inherited. By way of additional dateline protection originators often ‘date file’ a work by lodging it with a professional body or simply by posting it to themselves in an envelope, the seal of which would carry some recognised date authentication - a Post Office stamp or registered post label over the seal etc., but this really is belt and braces provided the original is signed by the creator. Any challenger to copyright would need to show an exact original work of an earlier date, which of course they would not be able to do.
When asked, authorities would look at all breaches from exact copies to those which they would consider to be ‘substantially similar’. It would then be a matter for the parties involved to prove who’s work was the original. (See Initial Protection above.)
With the passage of time, artists, photographers and others are becoming more sensitive about their imagery being copied and many more challenges are being made. These appear to be most successful where it can be shown that an image or object created by one person, and copied by another, CAN result in a successful challenge. Recently, a figurine of some old folks on a bench inspired an artist to create an painting based upon it, and it was successfully challenged.
Most often, challenges are successful where it can be shown that an item 'substancially' similar to an original creation, can be seen to create a choice for the consumer which would result in the original creator being 'robbed' of financial gain from their work, then a challenge will be successful. A good example of this, in the case of Sara Moon, would be creating cross stitch patterns for commercial gain using Sara Moon images as this challenges both the artists copyright AND that of Lanarte who hold exclusive rights to the production of Sara Moon images for cross stitch patterns.
There is a HUGE difference between ‘showing’ works and ‘publishing’ works without consent.
It would appear that promotion without the profit motive is acceptable to most owners as it seeks to increase exposure and sales to their benefit. It is unauthorised profit from their works that offends and is what copyright is there to protect.
Beyond that, there is of course dilution of sales caused by individuals having access to works of sufficient quality to 'satisfy there need'. This criterion has been brought to the fore by Internet access. Not that long ago the odd person having access to and the means to make an adequate copy of a work was so small as to be both insignificant and hard to trace. Today, that has changed dramatically with images posted to the internet, downloaded and and printed on printers which in many cases are very sophisticated indeed - at very little outlay. This has led to test cases that attempt to ascertain whether an image shown on the Internet for free and down-loadable, is in fact an infringement of copyright or a promotional tool to the benefit of the copyright holder. My understanding is that (as I write - 2010), an image large enough to indicate what an image portrays WITHOUT being large enough to satisfy the viewers needs, would not infringe copyright and be deemed a promotional aid.
Having said that, there are those who guard there copyright very jealously indeed. I remember some years ago, the highly successful UK furniture manufacturer, Parker Knoll, quite innocently included an artwork on the wall of a room-set within their brochure. Even though they had purchased the work to include in the picture, they were challenged by the owner of the art work who demanded that they either paid for the right to show the work within their brochure or immediately withdrew the brochure from distribution . Maybe the artist believed that Parker Knoll sought to enhance the desirability of their products by showing that discerning purchasers of this artists work would perhaps want to purchase Parker Knoll too (known as sale by association) - Or perhaps the artist just saw an opportunity to make a quick buck at PK’s expense! Either way it proves both the degree by which copyright can be fought and enforced - PK paid up. This shows too, that the legitimate purchase of an artwork in no way constitutes ‘ownership’ of copyright to any degree whatsoever.
The copyright to all of Bijan's work as 'Sara Moon' rests with the artist and not with Red Baron or its successors, Verkerke/Scandecor or its owners or subsideries or any other such bodies. Requests for permission to use the Sara Moon works can now be lodged though this website by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. PSP Users (etc) please see below, as it may not be necessary for you to make contact first, provided the rules stated are respected. In general terms and as explained elswhere in this document, an artist has copyright of their work as a natural right without need of any kind of registration with any official body of any sort. This remains the case for 70 years beyond the originators death, as ownership can be and usually is inherited.
THE SARA MOON GALLERIES - RESPECT & CAUTION WITH IMAGE QUALITY
The images in the main Sara Moon Gallery pages are mostly about 6 inches tall and would reproduce at 100dpi (Dots Per Inch) A printing terms that relates to the number of dots that make up an image.) To be of any real use to a professional printer the works would need to be at least 300dpi - 600dpi and often very much higher - and of course a lot larger than 6 inches tall. So, although the gallery works could be resampled to 300dpi, they would then need to be reduced to 2 inches tall to gain or retain any real quality - Hardly the stuff for any major print run.
Please be aware that creating your own patterns from Sara Moon artworks does offend the copyright of the artist and/or official cross-stitch pattern owners and as such would be illegal. Even if your work is not an exact copy, by stitch or by colour codes or even by minor changes to the actual image, if it can be seen to be ‘substantially similar’ to those artworks and/or patterns licensed, then this would constitute an infringement of copyright.
The signature style of sara Sara Moon is a Registered Trade Mark and its use without written consent is a copyright infringement. The use of the words "Sara Moon" to describe an item that is not the work of Sara Moon is also an infringement of Trade Mark Law unless created by a person with that legal given name. In other words, it is illegal to use such phrases as "... similar to Sara Moon" or "... looks like a Sara Moon painting" in order to draw attention to items not created by the artist Sara Moon as this is seen as using the good name and reputation of the artists to sell or draw attention to works by other artists etc.
Should any viewer be able to challenge, modify or correct any statement made above, I would be very happy to listen and to make adjustments, modifications and/or deletions where inaccuracies or omitions can be proven.
John D Moulton
Copyright in General || Initial Protection || What Constitutes Infringement? ||
designed and created by fellow artist & friend John D Moulton : www.johndmoulton.com