Assess your legal risk from font misuse and abuse - Extensis.com

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Assess your legal risk from font misuse and abuse

Monday March 5th, 2018 by Jim Kidwell

UTS-Fly-FontRiskAssessment-CheckList-EN-ThumbFonts are seemingly innocuous pieces of software, but when treated improperly can cause big problems for you, your team, and even your entire company.

Volvo sued for $1.5 Million In June 2017, Volvo was sued by Berthold for font copyright violation. Volvo is being accused of extending the typeface options of their Volvo Sans font using a copyrighted Berthold typeface, according to the Cook County Record. Volvo is being sued for 30,000 dollars per day for various damages including copyright infringement totaling 1.5 million dollars.

This doesn’t have to be your organization.

The problems that fonts can cause come in many forms, from the mere embarrassment of a client, all the way up to multi-million dollar lawsuits.

These are a few ways font problems can be created:

  • Casual font copying & trading
  • Misuse of open source fonts
  • Under-licensing of fonts
  • Distribution of fonts to outside groups
  • No formal internal training procedures
  • Misunderstanding of copyright laws
  • Inadvertent or overt font piracy

Font compliance issues like these have caught many teams off guard, and it hasn’t been limited to one type of organization. Presidential candidates, toy manufacturers, broadcasters, publishers and creative agencies have all had serious issues with font compliance.

To help you assess your risk, we’ve put together a free tool – Font Compliance & Risk Assessment Tool.