Website Usage of Trademarked Product Images

 
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Mark Farrell
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Joined: 02 Jan 2009
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Location: Massachusetts, USA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:52 pm    Post subject: Website Usage of Trademarked Product Images Reply with quote

Regarding product photography and using product images on one's website for promotional purposes of one's work, is there a possibility of trademark copyright infringement for use of an image of a brand name product, such as Coca Cola, Apple computer, etc.
Would there be a concievable need for some sort of property release or similar for use?
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bubs
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 8:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think they can get you on that unless it reflects badly on the product itself ie. a Speedo pack acting as a boat anchor, keeping the Queen Mary from drifting in a storm.
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Frank Nagy
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you shot the product for the company, then there should be no real problems providing you retained copyright and use for self promos?

If not then I recall a while back this came up in another forum.

Technically, you should get a release from the company if it was not a paid job. Seem to recall that it is usually given after many phone calls and emails.

If in doubt, don't use it.
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Mike
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some companies care more than others, from what I have heard Apple is pretty easy to deal with but Disney or Harley Davidson are brick walls.
Technically anything you use a prop is either trademarked copyrighted or patented. So if you take picture of a person wearing a North Face Jacket drinking a cup of Starbuck's coffee standing in front of a Cadillac that's three multi national corporations that you would have to deal with to use their products in your portfolio. Of the those three maybe if you offered Cadillac $10 they'd appreciate it...

FWIW it's not something I worry about and most likely the companies will never do anything even if they did see it unless you have a portfolio of porno images of Barbie...which I think happened and Mattel sued and lost because the images were used as satire.
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Brooks Ayola
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really don't know what the legal answer is, but it's not something I would worry about. If a company really felt like they didn't want you advertising their product, foe whatever reason, in your portfolio, they would simply send you a cease and desist letter and you would remove it.

I issue I might worry about more is giving the impression that you had them as a client when they aren't.
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