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What are Creative Commons Licenses?

A Cutting for Business reader recently emailed me asking about Creative Commons Licenses in craft businesses. I haven’t talked about them on Cutting for Business before, although, I’ve talked extensively about cut file and font licensing in this post. Let’s take a look at Creative Commons today. What is Creative Commons? Creative Commons is a …

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Is Trademark Infringement Something to Worry About in Your Craft Business?

Let’s talk about something today – trademark infringement. I spend a great deal of time on the blog detailing things you can and can’t do legally in your craft business related to copyrights and trademarks. In fact, there’s a whole section dedicated to trademarks on the Cutting for Business blog that you can view here. …

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Understanding Licenses on Cutting Files, Designs, and Fonts

Before you start listing items for sale, or even designing them – let’s talk licenses. Licenses are a BIG DEAL when making items for sale, as misuse of a license can potentially mean you will be sued. Whether you are making paper cards, vinyl designs, apparel, or anything else – there are many designs you can …

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How to Search the US Trademark Database & Interpret Results

If you are going to be selling products made with your Silhouette or Cricut, you’ve got to learn the basics of trademarks. I’ve written extensively about trademarks in this section on the blog. But, that isn’t enough. You’ve got to learn how to search the TESS (Trademark Electronic Search System) database, because TESS is the …

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Is it Worth it for Crafters to Trademark Something?

Some days it seems that every saying, phrase, word, and design is trademarked. It’s frustrating to me, and I know that it is also frustrating to you. Then, I see crafters talking about trademarking their own phrases and sayings. So today, I’m sharing my thoughts on trademarking – specifically: Is it worth it for a …

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6 Trademark Myths You Have to Stop Telling Yourself in Your Craft Business

Trademarks. Everyone hates them – and I fully understand that! I mean, in a world without trademarks, you could make big bucks on anything and everything. Unfortunately, that’s not the way the world of intellectual property works. Lately, I’ve seen any number of myths (and excuses!) crafters keep using to justify infringing on trademarks. Today, …

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Why Using a ‘Not Your Photo’ Watermark is Pointless

I keep seeing crafters using ‘Not Your Photo’, or ‘Not Yours’, or ‘Not your Picture’, or ‘Mine, not yours’ on pictures they share online. I wanted to take a quick minute today to highlight that using watermarks such as these are pointless and do little to protect your work. Why Using a ‘Not Your Photo’ …

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8 Characters in the Public Domain that Crafters Can Use

Remember that recent post about copyright laws in the US? I briefly mentioned something called public domain. Public domain is what happens when copyrighted works expire. Sometimes they expire because the term has run out; sometimes they expire because they aren’t renewed. In any case, when the copyright expires – it is available for anyone …

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How to Report Trademark Infringements

Lately, it seems that Cutting for Business readers are becoming more aware of trademark infringements – and the sheer number of them in the handmade community. In the last few weeks, I have received several emails asking how to report trademark infringements they see online. Large companies and corporations have entire teams dedicated to looking …

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