Copyright claims can be complicated and hard to understand. Whether you have the right to claim infringement on your work, or whether in fact your artwork also falls into infringement and making a claim will get you nowhere. This page has some easy to understand sections to whether or not you can make a claim, and what path should be taken. Please note that there is no legal advise on this page. If you are seeking something more than artwork removal from the internet, consider communicating with the Intellectual Property Office in your country. You can find them in this listing, here!
Make a Claim Check List
In theory, when someone creates something, they have the legal rights of ownership. this all sounds good and fair, and also puts you in good stead for any actions against infringers. Mainly as you are the legal copyright owner. That said, there are several things that should be considered before jumping into the depths of trying to get a take down in motion.
It should also be said that this site is not a legal platform to actually take action against infringers. It is a portal to help artists find some actionable course against infringers trying to sell or use copyrighted material on a plethora of sites around the world. Although it won’t stop them having your work, it will stop them selling it on many platforms. The site is here to also speed that process up, and leave you time to be more creative.
So, are you entitled to make a Take Down Claim? Well, lets start off with the legal aspect. In a great deal of countries the fact you created something and the fact you can prove you made something is enough to act as proof of copyright/IP ownership. However, some countries, even though not mandatory, request that you register your works in order to be valid for a claim. Luckily in the case of most DMCA Take Down processes registration is not the case (with some exceptions). So, over all most creatives/artists can make claims. To know what the limitations are simply open the next section.
Well, the copyright law has gotten quite complicated over the years. What you need to remember is that as the copyright holder of an image, it is the laws of the country of your residence that a accountable for actions against works. When it comes to takedown, it is based on the International laws. So, look at the list below and see which applies to you. Based on it’s advise you can then proceed.
- You created the artwork solely ~ if all of the elements that are contained in the image are yours (idea, composition, elements) then you will have no issues here, you can continue.
- Your artwork someone else’s idea ~ if you based your artwork on someone else’s idea or composition, then you can also fall into the infringement bracket, with a derivative claim from the original owner. You can continue, but with knowledge that counter claims could follow.
- You created a piece based on someone else’s trademarked character, logo, identity (i.e.: Star Wars, Disney) then it should be known that you are legally in the wrong also, unless you have a license agreement with the originator or trademark/copyright owner.
- You have done “fan art” and want to sell it, and someone copied your image? Well, this is similar to above, but in practice “fan art” should stay that. As soon as it becomes a commercial entity, then you can also be prosecuted for violating trademark/copyright laws.
- You are using a PD (Public Domain) image in it’s entirety? Well, although not illegal more morally wrong, you simply have no grounds to make a complaint, as if it’s free for you to use, then it’s free for anyone else to use. Your artwork is not original by definition.
- You have created a derivative of a known piece? By default you are required to seek permission of the original creator, but it’s not law, and the court decision will fall in the hands of the preceding judge. Continue with caution!
- You have created a parody of a know piece? In the EU, this is an acceptance form of avoid strict copyright on an image. If you reside in the EU then this is acceptable. Other countries may feel differently, and America for example has a strict copyright law against celebrity renderings (even caricatures).
- You are using CC (creative commons) or stock images in full? Again, not legally wrong, maybe more morally, but you need to check the attribution, but like PD images, even though the image rights have been waived, this doesn’t mean the images are yours copyright wise. You would need to show that enough of a created work is original to make the copyright claim stick.
If in doubt read this interesting article on the subject, here!
You will need to gather certain information to make the take down claim work. Luckily a great deal has been built into the site. So, in your part, you will simply need to have the following, if you are to continue using any of the forms created here:
- The URL of the infringing site. This needs to be the exact link from the URL browser address bar, of the image or product page you want to take down or complain against.
- A URL to an official portfolio example of your work, whether on your own site or a recognised portfolio site (like Behance).
- The domain name of the website (this can be harvested from the URL from point one).
For DHGate Take Downs additional information will be required.
- Passport scan (required for DHGate take downs).
- Artwork scan (required for DHGate take downs). Best to have a copyright notice on it.
We have managed to obtain and have a modified version of a WhoIs look-up form. You can find the necessary information you require by using this form. This is basically the first step to getting the required information. The best plan would be to have a text editor open so you can gather the data for easy copy/paste inclusion in the forms later. The WhoIs form can be found here!
No worries if they don’t have a take down page. We have simply made a set of tools that automates the process and send identical documentation that is required for an official DMCA request. You can find a list of all the tools on this page, here!
Many will need you to be a registered and verified user of this site. This is for security reasons, and you can check our Terms and Conditions policy here!