Legality of Using Manufacturer Artwork

by EngineerIT757. Posted on Sep 11, 2020    1    3

Hello everyone!

I've recently started an online business doing retail. I only deal with company registered distributors of the products I sell, and only sell licensed items. I've noticed my website is somewhat bland compared to the competition.

In the market segment I'm in (trading cards, collectibles, games), I've noticed most websites are very vibrant. Tons of clickable banners displaying promotional artwork/products, etc. I'm looking to add some of this flair to my website.

I'm curious though about the legality of using artwork from the manufacturer that I'm selling. Does anyone have experience with this?



wamih 2

The manufacturer may have promotional material they would let you use.

Keep in mind, just because someone has paid for photographs does not mean they have a universal copyright, that is all dependent on the initial contract or if it was done in house. It is very tricky and can be a hot bath. You may be better off taking some good pictures yourself.

madsci 3

You shouldn't use it without asking. They might be happy to share the artwork since it's promoting their stuff, but they presumably hold the copyright and unless that was part of a contract you don't automatically get to use it.

Beyond that, consider hiring a graphic designer and maybe a photographer to make your stuff stand out more.

UncleFishKiller 4

People take images VERY seriously. I ended up paying $1000 plus legal fees because I tried to fight it. After two letters Getty Images refused to budge and increased the penalty. Do not use photos without express written permission.