Nicht wenige von Ihnen, hoffe ich!
Sie können lang sein, langweilig und voller Juristensprache, aber sie zu lesen, kann Sie vor kostspieligen Fehlentscheidungen bewahren.
Schriftlizenzen sind auch als „End User License Agreements“ (Endbenutzer Lizenzvereinbarungen, kurz: EULAs) bekannt. Diese Dokumente beschreiben, was Sie mit den Schriften, die Sie lizenziert haben, dürfen und was nicht. Während Schriftdesigns in den Vereinigten Staaten nicht speziell urheberrechtlich geschützt werden können, kann hingegen die Software, über die Schriften auf dem Bildschirm angezeigt werden, geschützt werden. Aus diesem Grund werden Schriften ähnlich wie andere Software lizenziert.
Wir haben kürzlich eine Befragung unter Personen durchgeführt, die sich für server-basiertes Font Management interessieren, und stellten Ihnen die folgende Frage:
Wenn Sie eine Schrift kaufen – lesen Sie die Schriftlizenz?
Yes = Ja, No = Nein, Somtimes = Manchmal
Ich war froh zu sehen, dass fast die Hälfte der Befragten die Schriftlizenzen tatsächlich lesen – insbesondere deswegen, weil es sich um Leute handelte, die sich für das Management ihrer Schriften über einen Server interessieren. Im Lichte dessen würde ich es gern sehen, dass diese Zahl noch höher ist.
Viele Schrifthersteller (diejenigen, die Schriften entwickeln und verkaufen) haben ihre EULAs mittlerweile einfacher und leichter verständlich gestaltet. Davon abgesehen gibt es noch viele Anwendungen von Schriften, für die Sie eine geänderte oder erweiterte Lizenz erwerben müssen.
Einige der Dinge, die erlaubt sein können oder auch nicht, oder die den Erwerb einer erweiterten Lizenz erfordern, sind unter anderem:
- Einbettung in ein PDF
- Einbettung in eine distribuierbare Anwendung – „There’s a font for that!“
- Einbettung in ein eBook
- Prominente Nutzung eines einzelnen Zeichens oder einer Glyphe in einem Logo
- Der Verkauf eines Produktes, das vorwiegend von der verwendeten Schrift lebt (z.B. ein Becher mit einer Inschrift, ein T-Shirt mit eine Aussage oder magnetische Buchstaben für den Kühlschrank)
- Konvertierung einer Schriftart aus einem Format in ein anderes
- Bearbeitung der Schrift in einem Schrifteditor
- Nutzung der Schrift als Web Font
Diese Bedingungen sind von Hersteller zu Hersteller unterschiedlich. Als ersten Schritt sollten Sie auf jeden Fall das EULA lesen, das Sie mit Ihrer Schrift erhalten haben. Sie können es nicht finden? Erkundigen Sie sich beim Hersteller. Viele dieser Hersteller sind nicht sehr groß, so dass Sie unter Umständen direkt mit dem Designer Ihrer Lieblingsschrift kommunizieren.
Wenn Sie das schon erledigt haben – gute Arbeit!
Wenn Sie sich über Ihre Schriftlizenzen im Grunde nicht im Klaren sind, dann ermutige ich Sie, sich noch heute zu informieren.
Und sobald Sie auf dem rechten Weg sind, dann machen Sie sich über Universal Type Server schlau, der Ihnen hilft, ständig über Ihre Schriften und Lizenzen im Bilde zu sein.
Bon nombre d’entre vous s’en soucient !
Ces licences sont parfois longues à lire, ennuyeuses et rédigées dans un langage juridique difficile à comprendre, mais prendre le temps de les étudier peut vous éviter de coûteux problèmes.
On appelle aussi ces licences de polices des CLUF (contrats de licence de l’utilisateur final). Ces documents précisent ce que vous pouvez et ne pouvez pas faire avec les polices sous licence. Aux États-Unis, les conceptions des caractères ne peuvent faire spécifiquement l’objet de copyrights, mais le logiciel utilisé pour afficher les polices sur votre ordinateur est soumis aux copyrights. Ainsi, les polices font l’objet de licences similaires aux licences des autres logiciels.
Nous avons récemment posé la question suivante à un groupe de personnes qui s’intéressent à la gestion des polices reposant sur un serveur :
Quand vous achetez une police, lisez-vous le contrat de licence y afférent ?
Yes = Oui, No = Non, Sometimes = Parfois
J’ai été satisfait de constater que près de la moitié des personnes interrogées lisaient les contrats de licence des polices, surtout en sachant que ces personnes s’intéressent de près à la gestion de leur collection de polices au moyen d’un serveur. Toutefois, j’aurais aimé que ce chiffre soit encore plus élevé.
Beaucoup de fonderies (qui créent et vendent des polices) ont fait des efforts pour simplifier leur CLUF et les rendre plus faciles à comprendre. Dans certains cas, vous devez vous procurer une licence modifiée ou étendue pour couvrir l’utilisation spécifique d’une police.
Parmi les éléments pouvant être exclus d’une licence de base :
- Incorporation des polices dans un document PDF
- Incorporation des polices dans une application distribuable Incorporation d’une police dans un livre électronique
- Utilisation d’un caractère ou glyphe unique dans un logo
- Vente d’un produit qui présente essentiellement la police (une tasse portant une inscription, un tee-shirt comportant un message ou des lettres magnétiques à placer sur un réfrigérateur, par exemple)
- Conversion d’une police d’un format à un autre
- Modification d’une police dans un éditeur de polices
- Utilisation d’une police sur le Web
Ces conditions varient selon les fonderies. Le premier reflexe à adopter consiste à lire le CLUF livré avec votre police. Vous ne trouvez pas le CLUF ? Contactez la fonderie. Il existe des fonderies de toutes les tailles, mais la plupart ne sont pas très grandes et vous pouvez souvent contacter directement le créateur de vos polices préférées.
Si vous vous renseignez déjà systématiquement sur les dispositions des licences de polices que vous utilisez, je vous tire mon chapeau !
Si ce n’est pas le cas, il n’est jamais trop tard pour bien faire et je vous invite à vous en soucier dès à présent.
Et pour vous aider à prendre cette bonne habitude, n’oubliez pas que Universal Type Server peut vous permettre de mieux contrôler vos polices et leurs licences.
June 12th, 2012 by Jim Kidwell
High quality creative work draws draws and audience. Normally that’s a great thing, but when the assets used to create that work may not have been legally obtained, the attention is definitely drawn away from the intended work.
That was the case with the recent lawsuit brought against TNT for allegedly infringing upon the Anthropolymorphics font from Matius Gerardo Grieck of the +ISM studio.
The font lawsuit drew attention away from the promotion of Falling Skies, and onto the $200,000 lawsuit – never what you want your creative work to do. It makes you and the client look bad in public, and often entirely defeats the purpose of your creative work.
The cost of defending against this type of lawsuit varies, but can be a factor when organizations decide whether to pursue or settle these types of cases. TNT, TBS and Titleboy films decided to settle this lawsuit and move on.
It’s important for creative organizations to treat font compliance equal to that of other software compliance. This means that you need to ensure that you have appropriate licenses for all of the fonts in use by your creative teams. Depending upon the size of your font collection, it can take some time, but in the end it’s definitely worth the effort. You can feel good both that you’re protected from lawsuits, and that you’re appropriately compensating those who work so hard to bring us high quality typefaces and fonts.
Learn more about font compliance in the Server-based Font Management Best Practices Guide (free PDF download).
March 20th, 2012 by Jim Kidwell
The issues surrounding copyright, intellectual property and design can confound even the most intrepid designer. Fortunately, there are those who specialize in the field.
One of those experts is Frank Martinez, the legal mind behind the intellectual property law firm The Martinez Group PLLC. Mr. Martinez’s work focuses on the legal issues surrounding the field of design, and this has often taken him into the legal and intellectual property issues surrounding the development, sale and use of fonts and typography.
Now considered one of the pre-eminent experts in the field, Mr. Martinez took a few minutes to answer a few questions about his design roots, font licensing and the future of design law.
JK: I understand that you have a background in design. What drew you to design as a career, and what was your focus?
FM: I studied art and design in high school and I have a BFA from Pratt Institute were I was a printmaking major. After several years printing lithographs and etchings for artists, we turned to commercial printing. Being suckers for anything technical, we soon installed an IBM PC, a laser printer and a year later, our first Macintosh. We ended up being the de facto service bureau for our Dumbo loft building in 1998. Shortly thereafter, I started working with fonts by agreeing to typeset a 150-page book on the Macintosh for one of my art schoolteachers. Once I started working and experimenting with the fonts, I was hooked. On Black Monday we put the print shop to rest and I went to work in design as a production manager where I was responsible for purchasing font licenses. In short order I was teaching myself Postscript and setting up kerning tables for fonts that were used in designing pharmaceutical labels.
JK: How did you make the transition from design to the legal world?
FM: I knew from the first day of law school that I wanted to work in intellectual property. When I graduated from law school I spent 2 years at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as a Design Patent Examiner. Within 6 months, I managed to become the Examiner responsible for issuing design patents for font designs. Within a year, I started contributing articles to ID and Print Magazines about issues relating to design and the law. By and large, most of my articles were about fonts, protecting fonts and protecting creativity. Since I went into private practice, it’s been all fonts, all the time.
I still keep close contact with the design world. I have been teaching Intellectual Property Law in the MFA Design Program and the School of Visual Arts in New York for the past 13 years. Each new class is a lesson in how the Internet is changing the practice of design. When I first started teaching, every student had a dot com equity for services deal offered to them and they wanted me to teach them how to go public. This year, I had to speak slowly enough for note taking on iPads and the students wanted to discussed how to self-commercialize their senior thesis – the world changes.
JK: What would you say makes the legal issues surrounding the design community unique?
FM: In a nutshell, there are four primary issues. First, in the United States art and design has always been the handmaiden of commerce. It is hard to get business owners to understand that good design is art and to quote Milton Glaser, Art is Work. It is the erroneous perception in the business community that making art is an escape from a responsible adulthood that underpins the general lack of appreciation for the work of designers and an understanding of the intrinsic value of good design.
Second, as a general matter, designers and artists are not particularly astute business owners. Because there is no exposure to basic business and legal studies as a part of professional design education, designers are, for the most part, unable to authoritatively provide justification for the difficulty of the creative process and value of their work. In addition, designers do not have the tools to understand the legal framework that is used to protect their work.
Third, the mechanisms for protecting creative work are fragmented and unnecessarily confusing because different creative endeavors are protectable by different bodies of law. Artworks that have any usefulness are considered “utilitarian” and cannot be protected by copyright law. If you create a set of sculptural lampshades, you cannot copyright them. But non-illuminated sculptures bearing the identical form could be copyrighted. If you design a website, you cannot protect it by copyright since the Copyright Office views the attempt to copyright “graphic design” as an attempt to claim ownership of points or coordinates on a two dimensional grid. However, a claim to a copyright of the compilation of those images and text comprising the very same website can be copyrighted. Type font designs are expressly denied protection under copyright law in an effort to make sure that no one can claim “ownership to the alphabet.” However, the software creating the font can be copyrighted. Irrespective of their creative and artistic content, logos are considered trademarks and can only be protected by trademark registration.
Finally, it can be expensive to protect design works. Enforcement of rights by litigation or providing a plausible threat of a lawsuit to protect design is daunting, complex and expensive. Most corporate infringers can fund stiff and expensive-to-counter defenses. If a designer doesn’t protect their work product by solid contracts and, where appropriate, copyright filings, it will be hard to find an attorney willing to represent them. Copyright law provides incentives to register, among them the ability to claim enhanced damages as well a right to seek costs and attorney’s fees from an infringer.
JK: You work with quite a few typeface designers and type foundries. What are the main issues that you see surrounding typeface & font intellectual property?
As I noted above, the design of a type font is not copyrightable. A font design is protectable by a design patent, but protection under design patent law is merely 14 years. In contrast, the life of a copyright is the life of the author plus 70 years or in the case of font owned by a foundry or company, 95 years from the date of publication of the work. We work to ensure that our clients secure the longest possible term of protection, which is why we copyright the software associated with a type font. Furthermore, preparing and filing a design patent almost always requires the assistance of an attorney and can be quite expensive while an online copyright application is merely $35.
JK: What do you view as emerging legal issues surrounding fonts & typography?
FM: The largest issue is the web and the historical paradigm of licensing fonts for desktop use, which was, in turn, based upon selling 100 lbs. of lead type to a job printer. The web is a rich medium and font licensing and font valuation has not kept pace with the flowering of the web as a content medium. I recently launched DigitaLingo.com as a non-legal resource for foundries. DigitaLingo employs proprietary algorithms to value font licenses in OEM type licensing arrangements. The goal of DigitgaLingo is to match the actual value of a font license with the value a font creates when used in the rich mediums available on the web and across the plethora of devices that use the Internet and fonts.
JK: What are the legal issues that you see with font usage on the Internet?
FM: The web has always been a culture of sharing. An entire generation has grown up using the Internet and believing that anything on the Internet is free to use, free to share and free to reuse or repurpose. The recent lawsuit involving the artist Richard Prince underscores the issue of Fair Use and appropriation and when does using preexisting copyrightable work become copyright infringement. This issue is not new and the doctrine of Fair Use was created specifically to provide a safe harbor for creative works where the cultural benefit exceeds the potential harm to the copyright owner. The issue of Fair Use is being tested every day in new and quite imaginative ways.
JK: Staying legal is a job for both those who design typefaces and those who use them. What can you recommend as best practices for each group?
FM: Keeping it simple, conduct an audit; know what fonts you have and make sure that you have a license for the number of users and the methods of use. A good place to start to understand whether you are properly licensed is to read the EULA and if you can’t find one, go online to the foundry website. If you are not sure whether your use and/or usage are licensed, call the foundry. Trust me, they will be very, very happy to speak with you and will probably extend a discount, just because you called.
JK: Many print designers are moving into the world of web design. Do you have any tips for designers making the jump?
FM: Make sure you are properly licensed. Most uses of fonts in Flash type animation require a separate license and the use of fonts as webfonts will almost always require a special license. Don’t create liability for yourself and your clients; 15 minutes of research can make a significant difference to your career.
JK: Are there any differences in how the law considers font licensing and software licensing, or are they treated identically?
FM: Fonts are software but they need to be treated according the value they create. It is the cultural and historical impediments to understanding the value created by fonts and typography that needs to be understood and changed to meet the usage methods.
JK: Do you have any tips for those who are reviewing font EULAs to determine appropriate use?
FM: Most current EULA are pretty explicit as to what is allowed and prohibited. If the EULA you are reviewing is not, seeking to exploit perceived loopholes in the EULA will eventually cause a dispute. Again, if you are not sure, call the foundry.
JK: Can you recommend when it’s a good idea to consider legal counsel for font issues?
FM: If you are a foundry; as soon as reasonably possible. If you are a designer or the client of a designer and you believe that there may be a font use or license issue, sooner than later. Font designers will eventually find unlicensed or improperly licensed uses. If you are a designer and you need to purchase a font license, make sure that your use and your client’s uses are adequately licensed. If your client will need the font, make sure your client is also licensed.
JK: Fonts can be easily copied from one machine to another, and even easily downloaded from the Internet. This has lead many to treat fonts as “free.” What would you say to help convince people to better monitor their use of fonts?
FM: Font foundries are usually small businesses. It can take thousands of hours to design and implement a good font family. Using unlicensed fonts is no different from stealing from the corner mom and pop store. Proper licensing will result in a richer selection of fonts and better fonts because foundries will be incentivized to create products that the market will license. Finally, if you are designer, be self-interested, it is a lot less expensive to purchase a license than to lose a client and fight a lawsuit.
February 27th, 2012 by Jim Kidwell
This January, TBS and Titleboy Films were sued by type foundry +ISM for the alleged misuse of the font Anthropolymorphics.
The font was used in the promotional materials for the Falling Skies television show. +ISM alleges that it has no record of a font purchase, and still that it’s standard license doesn’t cover promotional use.
While the original creative work was developed by Titleboy Films (dba Prologue), the lawsuit includes mention of both Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. and Turner Network Television. +ISM is seeking the destruction of all offending materials.
Creative work always requires the appropriate font licenses purchase, and tracking those licenses is imperative. Font licensing issues can expand beyond the responsibility of the creator, and cast a shadow on all parties involved.
If you want to have your creative work noticed, you must maintain license compliance. Keep yourself safe from lawsuits, track the font in your collection using a font manager like Universal Type Server.
Quite a few of you, that’s who!
They’re font licenses, also known as the End User License Agreement (shortened to EULA). These documents cover what you can and cannot do with the fonts that you licensed. While typeface designs cannot specifically be copyrighted in the USA, the software that’s used to make them display properly on your computer can. This is why fonts are are pretty much licensed like other pieces of software.
We recently surveyed a number of people who were interested in server-based font management, and asked them the following question:
When you purchase a font, do you read the font license?
I was happy to see that almost half of our group actually read them. Since the survey was of people who are specifically interested in managing their font collection using a server, I was happy to see these results. That being said, I would like it to still be even higher.
Many type foundries (those who create and sell fonts) have worked to make their EULAs simpler and easier to understand. That being said, there are still many conditions where you may need to purchase an extended or modified license to use a font.
Some of the things that may or may not be permitted, or require you to purchase an extended license include:
- Embedding into a PDF
- Embedding into an distributable application – “there’s a font for that!”
- Embedding into an eBook
- Utilizing a single character or glyph prominently in a logo design
- Selling a product that consists primarily of featuring the font (such as a mug with an inscription, a shirt with a phrase on it, or magnetic letters for a fridge)
- Converting a font from one format to another
- Modifying the font in a font editor
- Using a font as a web font
These conditions vary by foundry. First step is to definitely read the EULA that came with your font. Can’t find it? Check with the foundry. While foundries vary in size, many of them aren’t very large, and you may be communicating directly with the creator of your favorite fonts.
So, if you’re already on top of this, good job!
If you’re “less than confident” about your licenses, I encourage you to get started today.
And, once you’re started down the right path, check out Universal Type Server to help you keep track your fonts and licenses.
January 24th, 2012 by Jim Kidwell
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter was not so long ago accused of taking on a task worthy of He Who Must Not Be Named: unlicensed font use. Well, it appears today that the Dark Lord has lost influence because NBC Universal and P22 Type Foundry have settled their lawsuit out of court.
The original lawsuit was pursuing $1.5 Million is damages, as well as the destruction of all materials created with the infringing font, Cezanne Regular. The items requested for destruction include hats, bags and t-shirts sold in the gift shops of the theme park.
Details of this type of settlement are not typically released to the public, so we won’t likely know where all of the wands and fonts landed.
If you’d like to keep yourself safe from the clutches of the Dark Lord, it’s best to first assess the your font collection and then provide only properly licensed fonts to your team. Universal Type Server can help you with this task. Contact us to learn more.
December 5th, 2011 by Jim Kidwell
We’d like to bring your attention to three leading magazine publishers that are using Universal Type Server to manage and distribute fonts to their publishing groups across the globe to secure font compliance across their organizations. Washingtonian Magazine, MetroCorp and Future Publishing have selected Universal Type Server to ensure font compliance and avoid multi-million dollar font lawsuits as recently experienced by NBC
As you may know, font license agreements are just as strict as other software license agreements and come with substantial legal implications for misuse. NBC was recently served with a lawsuit for $2 Million by the Font Bureau Inc., a typographic design firm, which alleges that the network infringed the firm’s fonts in marketing material used to promote its shows.
Companies across the world rely on Universal Type Server to ensure font compliance and avoid these costly oversights.
Washingtonian Magazine, MetroCorp (publisher of Philadelphia Magazine and Boston Magazine) and Future Publishing have all recognized the benefits of a server-based solution over decentralized font management solutions in ensuring font compliance.
Ed Haynes, IT Customer Services Manager at Future Publishing states, “We publish over one hundred titles and Universal Type Server gives us consistency across all of them and provides us with font usage reporting, which is essential for us to monitor our compliance.”
As font use is a key element in the day-to-day running of these publishers, a system that ensures consistency and efficiency without inhibiting creativity is vital.
Colin McSherry, Associate Art Director/ Mac Tech Support at Philadelphia Magazine agrees, “Universal Type Server allows us to delegate a large portion of font management responsibilities to a server that monitors font compliance.”
According to Paul Chernoff, Director of Information Technology at Washingtonian Magazine “Universal Type Server makes it easy for The Washingtonian to distribute fonts used only for a specific article. Recording the font license directly in the server ensures that we don’t accidentally exceed the font’s license.”
Chernoff added, “Before we had Universal Type Server, we always bought licenses for our entire staff; Type Server has made it possible to buy fewer licenses by making font management easier.”
To learn how to keep your creative workflows safe and legal with effective font management, join Thomas Phinney (@thomasphinney), Extensis Senior Product Manager for Fonts and Typography, for this webcast recording that takes an insightful look into the world of font licensing.
August 17th, 2011 by Jim Kidwell
On Tuesday, August 16, 2011, the Dutch type foundry Typotheque filed suit against RaiseDigital LLC, a Virginia-based consulting company that develops website and other materials for political campaigns and politicians.
The lawsuit seeks up to $2 Million in damages for the alleged misuse of the Fedra type family. This shines a direct light on the fact that font compliance is a serious issue for anyone working in creative endeavors.
If you design creative work for clients, the risk you take when employing an unlicensed font is distributed to the client as well. I’m willing to bet that Mr. Santorum’s campaign isn’t pleased that their name is being associated with this alleged illegal activity, and your clients won’t either. If you’re looking for a solid reputation and repeat business, it’s important that you take font licensing and font compliance seriously.
Universal Type Server can help you gain control of the fonts used in your workgroup. Through robust tracking and reporting you can ensure that you’ve purchased enough licenses for your workgroup, and keep unlicensed fonts from entering your workflow.
If you have a few minutes why not check out our previous post on finding quality fonts online. We detail some great resources on finding the best fonts for a variety of applications.
Is your current font collection getting out of control? Perhaps you should consider a professional font manager. Whether you have hundreds or even thousands of fonts, Extensis has a font management tool to help you streamline your workflow so you can focus on what’s really important: doing great creative work!
July 8th, 2011 by Jim Kidwell
No, this isn’t another new book or movie in the fabulously successful Harry Potter franchise. It’s a new lawsuit for the misuse of a the very popular font, Cezanne Regular by NBC Universal in materials produced for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando, Florida.
According to TMZ, P22 Type Foundry has filed suit for 1.5 Million dollars because no one who is associated with the production of various shirts, bags, stationary and other items using the Cezanne Regular font ever purchased a license to use the font in this way.
This lawsuit just underscores how increasingly important it is to maintain a licensed font collection in any organization. While fonts aren’t typically copy-protected, they are licensed just like any other piece of software. In a fast paced creative environment, without the appropriate font management tools in place, it can be easy for an unlicensed “rogue” font to enter the workflow.
That’s likely what happened here. It’s possible that one of the creative users obtained a copy of a font, possibly from home or from the internet, and may even have had the intent of purchasing official licenses from P22 for the project. For whatever reason, appropriate licenses were not purchased, the font entered the workflow, and now NBC Universal has to deal these issues – not only for the lawsuit itself, but also for all of the costs associated with the lawsuit.
These types of issues can easily be resolved through the effective use of a server-based font manager, such as Universal Type Server.
With Universal Type Server installed and properly configured, this type of situation could have easily been prevented. All creative users are given access to the organization’s font collection through the server, and can be confident that the fonts they are using are fully licensed for use. Unlicensed font additions can also be automatically prevented through tight permission controls, and the implementation of System Font Policies to prevent users from adding fonts to their local machine.
Contact us to learn more about how Universal Type Server can help you get control over your team’s fonts and avoid these type of lawsuits.