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NikitaMonAmour

Question about copyright (Shoes)??

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Hello! I would like to open my shoe store soon but I have some doubts regarding copyright and trademark. A well-known shoe store in SL  have released few months ago a new collection of mesh shoes... all of them are accurate reproductions of RL designs, i mean the designs are identical to Jimmy Choo-Lance sandal, Christian Louboutin pumps and Alexander Mcqueen wedges (among others). So the big question: is this legal?  Reading the Linden lab TOS I thought we were not allowed to copy RL designs. 

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You could report this to the RL shoemakers so that they can file a DMCA if they object to their designs being sold as SL shoes.  There is a small chance though that the creator obtained permission from the designers to do this and if they did than it is legal.  That is why only the people that own the IP rights to the RL product can request their removal through the DMCA procedure.  LL nor you know for sure if a violation is occurring.  Only the IP rights owner can determine this.  Also some companies may not mind that their designs are in SL as they look at it as a promotion of their product and may choose not to file a DMCA as a result.

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Something that has always puzzled me is that I have never seen in a Market Place blurb the phrase "Under License By" or what ever the exact legalize is used on RL on packaging.

I'm not saying it doesn't exist, just that I have never see it.

You would think that a Merchant who had obtained permission would state it plainly.

 

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

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Amethyst Jetaime wrote:

You could report this to the RL shoemakers so that they can file a DMCA if they object to their designs being sold as SL shoes.  

I don't think shoes, clothing, and other useful articles are subject to copyright, and I think that's why the fashion industry in RL works the way it does.  Designers have to have new designs each season to be able to have something that hasn't been knocked off by mass marketers.

It's kind of ironic that real shoes are not protected, but virtual shoes are.  When I read the OP, I wondered id the first SL designer to make  a virtual kniowckoff of a RL design can claim copyright, and I don't see why not, since she would be the original creator of the virtual design.

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but are these shoes a real exact copy of the original ones ?

ive been ordered some monthes ago for a model graduation to make 2 dresses inspired by Channel 2012 spring summer collection.

i had to watch longly the vid from the channel exhibit and then i made my 2 dresses.. they are, of course, not the exact copy, but i took some ideas here and there and managed for it looked a lil like the same style because it was the order. Among other things, they wanted the same kind of color, blue color, and well a general same style.

its writed in the nc that goes with the dresses but its not a copy in any way, its just free inspiration from the model displayed.. i dont consider its a copy and far from it... anyway.. it would requiere skills i dont think i have to make an exact copy. But then, may i be attacked bec i tell the dresses have been inspired by Channel collection video ?

im never at ease with order, bec its not my way to do.. i use to let my inspiration work by itself.. so its what i did here too, just using some of the things they asked me and some ideas i took here and there.. but i did the design from A to Z and the design is completly mine. Both dresses are not in the video. 

ETA : this only to say, its never so simple  than what it seems.

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Trinity Yazimoto wrote:

but are these shoes a real exact copy of the original ones ?

 

What strikes me  is that the shoes are EXACT copies...even the same work in the textures. Maybe you recognize these designs?

247lancepat_large_1_red - Copy.jpgalexander-mcqueen-black-wave-strappy-wedge-sandal-product-1-3496125-296450716_large_flex.jpegalexander-mcqueen-ghilly-lace-up-sandal-product-1-2858862-341911275_large_card.jpegchristian-louboutin-lady-gres-160-pumps-profile.jpg

 

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Jennifer Boyle wrote:


Amethyst Jetaime wrote:

You could report this to the RL shoemakers so that they can file a DMCA if they object to their designs being sold as SL shoes.  

I don't think shoes, clothing, and other useful articles are subject to copyright, and I think that's why the fashion industry in RL works the way it does.  Designers have to have new designs each season to be able to have something that hasn't been knocked off by mass marketers.

It's kind of ironic that real shoes are not protected, but virtual shoes are.  When I read the OP, I wondered id the first SL designer to make  a virtual kniowckoff of a RL design can claim copyright, and I don't see why not, since she would be the original creator of the 
virtual
design.

The Design Piracy Prohibition Act has never made it through Congress.  There are some circumstances where designs can be copyrighted but they are pretty limited.  The linked Wiki article has a good overview.

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NikitaMonAmour wrote:


Trinity Yazimoto wrote:

but are these shoes a real exact copy of the original ones ?

 

What strikes me  is that the shoes are EXACT copies...even the same work in the textures. Maybe you recognize these designs?

247lancepat_large_1_red - Copy.jpgalexander-mcqueen-black-wave-strappy-wedge-sandal-product-1-3496125-296450716_large_flex.jpegalexander-mcqueen-ghilly-lace-up-sandal-product-1-2858862-341911275_large_card.jpegchristian-louboutin-lady-gres-160-pumps-profile.jpg

 

well im sorry, i can not afford such brands so i dont use to focus on them and im not a shoesahollic so i rarely look at shoes catalogue... adding to this than because of ankles problem i only can wear ankle boots (no cheap ones either, but still not the same kind of prices i guess).

Nevertheless, i can tell you that i have seen similar shoes (not the same quality, not really exactly same but really looking like) in tons of cheap shoes store in RL.

im not a law specialist, so i cant tell... Does shoes design is the same as art ? does it have the same restriction about using the concept ? i cant tell.

i know using a brand name that is not ours in SL is forbiden. But using a similar design for fashion items like shoes ? i cant tell.. Is the design of this shoes protected same as art with a copyright ? I dont know.. but then they should start to watch closely at all the more or less copy in RL what does make more concurence than in SL.. SL shoes are virtual products.. i dont think that if sm1 buy the virtual copy of these shoes, it will harm any RL business... shoes worn by an avatar, cant be worn in SL. 

The only thing i can regret, maybe, its the lack of originality or creativity, of the merchant who create them in SL , but doing a real shoe and a virtual one, is far from being the same and requires different skills anyway... Just indeed, i may regret the lack of inspiration of the SL merchant.. But well.. maybe some ppl are happy to get those shoes in SL. Maybe there are customers for this kind of things...Anyway, i dont think it can do any harm to the RL merchant. Maybe, its even flattering... I dont know.. 

your OP suggest to me interesting questions anyway. Its indeed an passionating debate.. But i do think i dont have enough knowledge about laws to have right answers..

Edit (adding a missing word)

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As far as i know things like bags clothes and shoes 'designs' arent copyrighteable ,as long as they don't include the brand/logo. You can make spiked shoes, but if you include a Louboutin tag you're in trouble.Please correct me if i am wrong . but sl is not happy about things like that, you cant create "replicas" i guess , even on the mesh ip test they say you cant upload lookalikes .

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Trinity Yazimoto wrote:


well im sorry, i can not afford such brands so i dont use to focus on them and im not a shoesahollic so i rarely look at shoes catalogue... adding to this than because of ankles problem i only can wear ankle boots (no cheap ones either, but still not the same kind of prices i guess).

Nevertheless, i can tell you that i have seen similar shoes (not the same quality, not really exactly same but really looking like) in tons of cheap shoes store in RL.

im not a law specialist, so i cant tell... Does shoes design is the same as art ? does it have the same restriction about using the concept ? i cant tell.

Sorry, i'm a shoe whor*...lol. I will send you via in-world some links of the virtual shoes so you can compare for yourself. I've seen many shoes in SL looking similar to RL designs, but these are just identical.  I'm more confussed now because i've read about Jimmy Choo company (RL shoes) and that's what i found in Wikipedia:

"J. Choo Ltd. has over 400 design patents to its name. Jimmy Choo is a global "luxury accessory brand", designing and creating: women's shoes, handbags, small leather goods, scarves, sunglasses, belts, eyewear, perfume and men's shoes.The company has had several prominent cases for copyright and trademark infringement, as well as being the target of "knock-off" counterfeit imports in the UK, the US and Australia. Jimmy Choo is famously litigious, suing high street chains including Oasis, Warehouse ..."

I just don't know if RL patents are applicable to SL and virtual content.

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Madeliefste Oh wrote:

Christian Louboutin has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to fake products. See:

 

Copyrighing design elements is a very tricky thing because things can look the way they do for a number of reasons. I notice that one thing Christian Louboutin cracks down on is red soles on shoes. As it happens I have a pair of SL black pumps that has the option of having the soles red - this option mentions nothing abut Christian Louboutin or any RL designer at all - it was simply included as an appropriate-seeming option for vampires and I wouldn't be surprised if the SL designer though nothing about the connection to Christian Louboutin. Actually, vampires may have a case for suing Christian Louboutin for cultural misappropriation.

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i had the links you sent to me in ims.. im sorry im not inworld for now, but my ims come to my mailbox so its fine.

So firstly, to answer you question.. Yes, they are exactly the same, without the RL logo.

But it doesnt answer my questionning... 

i know that law punish if you make a fake copy of a bag in RL with a stolen logo.. but what if you do the same bag but without the logo ? The logo may pp wrongly think its the original one.. but what if you add your own logo ? then its not the brand name you are stealing but only the design.. the idea, the concept, the look.. You could have use different materials for you bag for example... 

Now about the SL copies.... I still consider that a SL product is not a RL product and doesnt fill the same needs.. If i need a bag in RL i wont certainly buy it in SL , if i need one in SL i wont buy one in RL. In this case i dont think the SL copies are doing any harms to the RL creator... On top, as i could see, the SL creator didnt used the RL logo, neither claimed there were same as the RL ones. So im still questionning myself.

The creator you pointed to me is an established one in SL; i would be surprised he took so many risks. And maybe the RL brand would consider that the SL copies are still a great advertising for their product in RL. Who knows ?

Finally, for me, the only "crime" this SL creator is guilty about, would be to have zero creativity himself... Great skills for building and texturing btw... but zero originality by himself.... What disapoint me btw. I will never look at this SL brand same as before . :smileyfrustrated:

I hope you understand that my purpose is not to contradict you, but just questionning because really i dont have any answers here, only questions. 

 

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Theresa Tennyson wrote:

 

Copyrighing design elements is a very tricky thing because things can look the way they do for a number of reasons. I notice that one thing Christian Louboutin cracks down on is red soles on shoes. As it happens I have a pair of SL black pumps that has the option of having the soles red - this option mentions nothing abut Christian Louboutin or any RL designer at all - it was simply included as an appropriate-seeming option for vampires and I wouldn't be surprised if the SL designer though nothing about the connection to Christian Louboutin. Actually, vampires may have a case for suing Christian Louboutin for cultural misappropriation.

The OP is not talking about design elements, but about complete designs.

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Branded items may be listed or sold only by the brand or intellectual property owner or its authorized agents. A "branded item" is an item that:

  • contains or uses a brand name or logo;
  • replicates or closely imitates the appearance of a real-world physical product of a brand owner (for example, items that replicate the appearance of brands of cars, jewelry, or shoes that are available in the real world);
  • replicates or closely imitates the appearance of a celebrity, famous person, or fictional character from a copyrighted work (for example, avatars that replicate the appearance of movie stars or characters from a book, film, television program, or game); or
  • replicates or uses an artistic or creative work that is the subject of copyright (for example, virtual artwork that replicates artwork available in the real world or a sound clip that includes part of a song recording).

 

 

So, no, they are not supposed to be listing these items and if caught they wil be pulled and possibly fined by the brand holder.

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Madeliefste Oh wrote:

Christian Louboutin has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to fake products. See:

 

Note carefully this little tid bit deeper in their web site:

 

"Our trademarks are registered with Customs services throughout the World. Those services are supported through constant training and dialogue with our counsel and ourselves."

 

It is the use of their Trademark in selling cheap knock offs that they leverage.

You can make look a likes all day long as long as you don't violate the Trademarked elements.

"Currently, fashion may only be protected by copyright to the extent that its shape is non-utilitarian enough to qualify as a creative "sculpture," or to the extent that a design, pattern, or image on the clothing qualifies as "pictorial" or "graphic." While current laws against counterfeit goods do provide some protection for designers, this is so only when the trademark is used and not when merely the design is copied under a different label. In addition, fashion may be protected by design patents if the requirements for patentability are met. To be patentable an ornamental design must be new, original and non-obvious."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Design_Piracy_Prohibition_Act

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Perrie Juran wrote:


Madeliefste Oh wrote:

Christian Louboutin has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to fake products. See:

 

Note carefully this little tid bit deeper in their web site:

 

"Our trademarks are registered with Customs services throughout the World. Those services are supported through constant training and dialogue with our counsel and ourselves."

 It is the use of their Trademark in selling cheap knock offs that they leverage.


That is not the only thing they state, it says also:

"We use copyright, trademark, design rights or other claims to achieve almost unprecedented assistance from the search engines to take down sites."

And:

"This is not a comprehensive list. Bottom line: whatever works to get counterfeiters to stop, we use. We measure our resources to be sure. Not everyone gets the same response but we move against everything. This is what we mean by "Zero Tolerance." No one should believe because they are relatively small they will not be found or not moved against. Not so. We will cooperate with Fiscal, Tax, Postal, Shipping, Law Enforcement, Customs or simply do it ourselves, but we will take them down where possible."

 

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Madeliefste Oh wrote:


Perrie Juran wrote:


Madeliefste Oh wrote:

Christian Louboutin has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to fake products. See:

 

Note carefully this little tid bit deeper in their web site:

 

"Our trademarks are registered with Customs services throughout the World. Those services are supported through constant training and dialogue with our counsel and ourselves."

 It is the use of their Trademark in selling cheap knock offs that they leverage.


That is not the only thing they state, it says also:

"We use
copyright, trademark, design rights or other claims
to achieve almost unprecedented assistance from the search engines to take down sites."

And:

"This is not a comprehensive list. Bottom line: whatever works to get counterfeiters to stop, we use. We measure our resources to be sure. Not everyone gets the same response but we move against everything. This is what we mean by "Zero Tolerance." No one should believe because they are relatively small they will not be found or not moved against. Not so. We will cooperate with Fiscal, Tax, Postal, Shipping, Law Enforcement, Customs or simply do it ourselves, but we will take them down where possible."

 

I stand corrected.

ETA, from my reading on the subject in general, they would have more tools to leverage in the EU than in the U.S.  It is very easy to find look a likes of just about anything in the U.S. as long as they don't use the Trademark elements.

 

 

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In Europe IP rights laws are different per country. But in general you can say that IP rights are a package of rights. Design right for example is one of the IP rights. Design right protects the shape of a three dimensional design.

Then there are two forms of design right: registered design and unregistered design. The latest is what most second life designers use. The unregistered design right is similar to copyright, you get it automatically when you create a design.

But (bigger) compagnies will choose to register their designs. It give them more weapons in hand to protect their originals.

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Shoes aren't really my thing but this thread reminded me of something:

In 2007 I purchased a pair of snow boots from a shoe merchant whose designs at the time were fairly popular  - especially for vintage shoes for both men and women.  I think my partner purchased 99% of his shoes there.  I purchased a pair of "Ughs" from this designer which is the SL version of "Uggs."  I had not heard of the Uggs boots at the time, probably because I don't live in an area that gets snow, but loved the look in SL.

I've seen similar examples of this all over SL - a well-known RL "look" is duplicated in SL but with the name slightly changed.

 

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Jennifer Boyle wrote:

I don't think shoes, clothing, and other useful articles are subject to copyright,

The Red soles of one maker are TRADEMARKED ... different than copyright or patented.

 

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Trinity Yazimoto wrote:

but are these shoes a real exact copy of the original ones ?i

These are pixels on flat screens ... and as such can't infringe on RL things made of leather even if they were copyrighted (which clothing design can't be).

 

Unbless, of course, a shoe maker decides to enter SL as a vendor.

 

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yes this is what i think too.. even if the design is the same its still not the same kind of product.. we cant comparate a rl shoes with a virtual one... its just not same and can t in any case create concurence between each other.. at the best, it can be ad for each other.. 

but again.. im astonished by the lack of original creativity by this sl creator.. i even never could imagine it was possible to just use rl designs for making a business in rl.... i probably have a less technical skills than him, but at least, i do my original designs myself... But well, as long there is a market for rl items reproductions in sl well maybe hes not wrong either.

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Nefertiti Nefarious wrote:

These are pixels on flat screens ... and as such can't infringe on RL things made of leather even if they were copyrighted (which clothing design can't be).


 

Could you please provide me the source from which you obtained such information?

Don't get me wrong, I am not distrustful but It's hard for me to believe that (according to what you say) anyone could make identical copies of RL stuff... It is my understanding that a design is a design and no matter if it is made of leather or drawn. If you are right, what is the meaning of this fragment of the Linden Lab TOS?

 

"Linden Lab responds to complaints that content infringes trademarked or celebrity material. Trademarked material includes trademarked logos, trademarked brand names, and trade dress, which is the distinctive visual appearance of a product or its packaging.

It is often difficult to tell what may or may not be trademarked or protected as trade dress. However, use of designer logos and brand names without permission, such as Gucci, Nike, Louis Vuiton, etc., is usually not acceptable. If you don't have permission, please don't just use a misspelling of the brand name, for example, "Njke" instead of "Nike" – instead, create your own original brand name that's associated uniquely with you!

If you're creating objects inspired by real-world objects, take care that your objects have an original appearance and shape. That's the best way to avoid trade dress issues. Be wary of imitating distinctive and recognizable product appearances. For example, the well-known appearance of the Eames lounge chair and ottoman from Herman Miller is protected under trade dress law."

 *I think that I have formulated wrongly my question ... it is not about copyright, is trade dress?

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