Who owns your logo?

Another week and another conversation about logo ownership.

Today I was chatting to a chap who is doing some work at my office. When he found out that I design logos, he took the opportunity to ask me a few questions. One of them being: who owns my logo, me or the designer?

This is a subject that has come a few times over the last year with clients of mine – who have been stung by their last designer, and people I meet networking.

The copyright law is this:
The ownership of the creative work belongs to the creator, unless they agree to pass this along to the person / company who commissioned the work.

For more about copyright law, read this article, see point 5.

Basically read the small print in the terms and conditions from your designer, and if they have none, ask the question!

The chap I was talking to today, had to pay again to get his logo released to use on his website! He and many others are being held to ransom for the sheer fact they don’t know the law.

As a designer I think the copyright law is great in some cases, but when it comes to logo design (and graphic design in general) if a customer has paid a fair amount for the work to be done then they should be able to at least own that work. A logo is a huge thing for both designer and client to work on. You have both had to invest time and energy in the process of creating the logo together. Yes, together!! A designer may come up with the final look and feel for the logo and create brand guidelines for it’s future usage, but ultimately it is journey you have gone on together.

So that is why at Seventy Three Design we hand over the rights of the logo or design artwork (on payment) to our clients. And guess what…they are happier for it and tend to stay with us longer. And that my friend is because we are team, we work together with our clients as a team.

Rant over.