Journal Entry: Tue Apr 13, 2010, 1:02 PM
I can't go into details but I just learned one of my stock images was used in a fairly large commercial project without my knowledge. While the member who used it contacted me to request permission, they never identified the company they represented or said the image would be used by them for a large commercial project. I thought I'd received a permission request for a personal project. I had absolutely no idea how they'd used the image until another member saw the printed piece and asked me about it. After speaking to people involved, I don't think they intended to deceive me. But they also didn't have legal rights to use the image for this project. By not disclosing the facts, the permission I granted was void.
So its time for us to review the rules....
I have one rule on all of my resources... no commercial use without permission. Commercial use means for-profit projects beyond selling DA prints. I specifically use this rule to prevent businesses and corporations from using them commercially. Which is why I place a Creative Commons license on everything. I often grant permission to use my resources, free of charge, in small commercial projects or projects for charities and schools. But you still need to ask and clearly provide all the facts about the intended use.
If I do give permission, it's solely based on the information you supplied. If you exclude vital information and details, intentionally or not, any permission granted becomes null and void. If you use a resource for any purpose which wasn't specifically agreed to in advance, you're violating the copyright and the Creative Commons license... period. Translation: If you're intentionally vague because you think I won't see or find out about the actual use, think again. This violation took place thousands of miles away in another country. It was less than a month before someone told me about it.
If you're a business owner, do not use your personal account to contact members about using their art for commercial projects. Create a separate DA account for your business and clearly label it as such. It's your responsibility to identify yourself and to supply full details about the project. Including real names, real addresses and phone numbers. Deviant Art's informal environment is not an excuse for you to discard business etiquette. If you're a freelance artist who's contacting me on behalf of a client, for the love of god protect yourself! Clearly identify yourself and the client, by name. If you don't and your client is a douche bag (be honest... most are), they can legally place the blame on you.
That's it until the next time someone finds a new and original way to bend the rules!
Listening to: Nada
Reading: Your journal!
Drinking: Diet Coke