Sooo… Got my final warning from Etsy for Copyright Infringement!!!!!
What am I to do!?!?!
How did I get here, you ask? Cuz I’m a big fat NERD. I love videogames, superheroes, aliens, tv, and so much of that pop culture yumminess!
Some designs I make are very “inspired” as in similar shape, color or “feeling”. Some things however, I admit it, straight up from a thing. I’m sorry. 😦
Nearly everything that has been taken off of Etsy was from a video game! I have had 8 things in the last 2 years (exactly) taken down. Every one was from FallOut, Pac-Man, Portal, or something along those lines. However, the last “straw” was a Pac-Man design I have had in my store for nearly that whole 2 years being open. However, the Portal design I had up was taken down within 24 hours.
Wondering how many you can have taken down before they shut your doors? I have heard 3 strikes and your out, but I think it really is a case by case situation. There’s really no way to know how long you can “get away” with something. But should we even try to “get away” with it??
From Esty’s Fact Guide: “It may be tempting to include names of popular brands or celebrities in your listing titles, tags or descriptions – for instance, the name of a luxury handbag company that inspired your purse design. But using that brand’s name in your tags has been considered problematic by certain IP owners. Similarly, just tacking on “inspired by” or “____-like” in the tags or description may not prevent you from receiving a notice of infringement from the IP owner for a number of legal reasons, such as causing confusion. The same goes for any items that were “inspired by” popular books, movies or television shows.”
If you are wondering if you can get away with it, don’t chance it! And for the record, that “10% change in a design thing” – is NOT a thing. Don’t let a lawyer have to tell you. 😛
Am I mad? NOPE. I am GLAD I was able to share this fandom of a beloved game to the masses. I hope every time someone wears what little I have dispersed into the world gives a smile and cheer to the people who wear and see it. I hope it sparks conversations of how great that game is and share memories of their past. I hope it sparks a friendships that last a lifetime! I wish I could afford to get proper licensing for such big brands so I can keep spreading this love, and hopefully one day I can!
So what to do now? Out of fear of my shop closing, I took down a bunch of things. It was kind of sad… Then I thought to myself, “Hey Mere-bear, you got style gurl. You got some bangin’ designs all of your own! You gotta take those designs and blow it up, lady! You ARE a designer! You have talent… and dammit… people like you!”
Gave myself a pretty good hug after that pep talk. You be prepared world! Be prepared for new FoxyFunk Designs like you’ve never seen before!
I hope I can inspire YOU to be the BEST you ARE and spread that jam all over this peanut butter sandwich! If you have any questions about your Etsy experience or copyright and trademark rules, please message me!