[thelist] Logo Design company graphics

dwain dwain at alforddesigngroup.com
Wed Jan 26 00:29:48 CST 2005

M. Seyon wrote:

> Message from dwain (1/25/2005 11:04 PM)
>> that's why the prices seem exorbitant sometimes; however, the 
>> copyright is still the property of the designer.  to own the 
>> copyright would cost much money, that's why companies usually don't 
>> buy the copyright;
> I disagree with this statement.
> Copyright, in itself, costs nothing. Copyright owners, especially now, 
> are very rabid about protecting their "intellectual property", and 
> demanding ridiculous sums of money for their work.

if you have a one-of-a-kind item that no one else has or can produce, 
the law of supply and demand comes into play and the entity that 
supplies can demand what the market will bear.  do you think that the 
nike swoosh sold for a paltry sum?

> Newsflash. Your Intellectual Property is not some logo you created for 
> Bob's House of Cookies. Intellectual Property is the ability in your 
> mind, to conceive and create *the next design*. Creating one design 
> does not diminish your existing reserve of intellect, or make you less 
> able to create other designs. Quite the opposite, in fact.

intellectual property is the logo.  like you said it is the ability in 
your mind to conceive and create the next design.  according to your 
logic the first logo is not ip because there was not a preceding logo 
created.  usually the first logo you create is in a design class; 
everything after that is ip, according to your statement.  microsoft's 
intellectual property is their source code, is their really any 
difference between source code and a logo or photograph or book or web 
site design?  i don't think so, do you?  besides, you don't own the 
copyright to the software you use, unless you wrote it yourself; you 
leased the rights to put it on one stationary computer and maybe a laptop.

> If you create that logo for someone, it holds precious little value to 
> you. It is however, entirely your choice how stingy you are with it 
> but it seems ridiculous to me to design a logo for someone, and tell 
> them you own the copyright. What are you going to do with it? Reuse it 
> for some other logo? Is your talent that limited in variety and scope?

a work (web site, book, photograph, logo, etc.) is copyrighted by the 
author upon creation of the tangible work.  an idea cannot be 
copyrighted.  thus, the copyright owner owns the copyright for his/her 
life plus 50 years, unless the time limit has been changed since 1976.  
logos are sometimes made up of elements and sometimes those elements can 
be used successfully in another logo, thus the need to maintain 
copyright control.  however, most designers do the logo for a price and 
don't care how the piece is used.

with the onset of open source and the web expanding the way it is, 
certain aspects of business are changing to accommodate the "free" 
enterprise system.  there are some hangers on to old concepts (ms); i'm 
working on my outlook.

> I can understand retaining copyright for a book, which can be sold to 
> different publishers, or a television show that can be syndicated, or 
> a photograph that can be sold as fine art, stock photography, 
> commercial photography, etc.
> But a logo?? Please.

again, that's why logos cost so much sometimes.

> Suppose, 20 years down the line, if any of your logos are impressive 
> enough to last that long, the company wants to modify the logo. But 
> you've since moved/retired/died. What then? Do you really expect them 
> to come looking for you, or whomever your copyrights have since been 
> passed to, to ask you to make the modifications, or to authorise them 
> to make the changes?

taking your mom and pop logo example, i would expect them to find 
another designer to do another design.  when i left new orleans, i had 
done a web site for a conference management business, and a local 
designer was hired to maintain the web site.  if i was the design firm 
for nike, i would expect them to come back to the firm for a redesign, 
but i doubt they will change their logo, do you?  one thing i have 
learned is that you pick and choose your battles and most of the 
"battles" designers face aren't really worth the fight.  it costs more 
in losses in the long run than a win in court.

>>  it's an ip thing for the designer as well as a portfolio piece.
> "The designer reserves the right to use this logo for self-promotional 
> purposes."

i agree with you. 

> regards.
> dwain

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