This article pulls together a whole suite of resources available to you to understand intellectual property (IP).
Although we’re not IP police we do respect the intellectual property of others and expect that you do the same. This article is aimed at helping you to respect the copyright and IP of others, as you’d probably want the same respect shown to your items!
Intellectual property is a complex area of the law and covers a whole range of things like copyright, trademarks, design, patents, design and moral rights among others! There are many misconceptions surrounding the use of works which are protected by intellectual property rights.
As an Envato Marketplaces author, your main intellectual property areas to understand will probably be copyright and trademarks. To get a feel for what copyright is and how copyright can be infringed check out our What is Copyright? article here. If you’re unsure about trademarks and logos head across to the Trademarks 101 article here.
We’ve also prepared a specific article about what assets you can use in your items here which covers off on how to license assets for your items, and some creative commons and open source questions. Along with these resources there’s also a specific article about using real-world products and trademarks in your items here that deals with the general approach and specific exceptions applying on the Marketplaces. We've tied it all together in a visual flowchart which you can access here.
What’s left to say? On topic but not directly related to intellectual property is our Envato originality threshold. So all else equal, your items still need to be original and creative enough to make it past our reviewers and onto our marketplaces.
If you still have any questions revisit the resources linked in this article and if that doesn’t help open a support ticket and we’ll be glad to help.
Getting up to speed
Here is a list of the IP resources (and links) available to you:
- Content Policy – basically the IP rules we abide by on our marketplaces.
- What is Copyright? – an introduction to the world of copyright.
- Lodging a DMCA and Dealing with a DMCA – what you need to do and the information you need to provide to lodge a DMCA take down notice and information of what your options are and how to file a counter notification.
- DMCA Frequently Asked Questions - answers to the questions that you may have about the DMCA process.
- Using Assets – an explanation of the types of assets you can use in your item previews and downloads.
- Pastiche (AudioJungle items) – what’s allowed when your audio item imitates the style of another work or artist.
- When do I need a Model or Property Release? - issues with recognisable human beings or identifiable buildings.
- Trademarks 101 – an overview of trademarks and how a trademark might be infringed.
- Trademark Use and Real World Products – when you can and can’t use real-world products and other peoples’ trademarks in your items.
- Copyright, Products and Trademark Flowchart – a visual snapshot of the IP issues you need to be aware of in a flowchart.
Beside all the great resources we’ve listed, there are two areas that are worth noting but don’t really fit anywhere else! They are:
- Decompiling: You’re not allowed to submit an item that has been decompiled or otherwise reconstructed from another work (even if that work is your own). For example: You cannot decompile a Flash file and resell it. Unfortunately we are unable to tell the origins of a decompiled file and apply a general rule that if a work looks as though it is decompiled (even if the work from which it is decompiled is your own) we will reject it because of the risk of it being an unauthorized decompilation. If it is your own work you should be able to recreate it.
- Government or military property: You’re not allowed to submit an item that uses in whole or in part government or military property. You cannot submit a work that contains a reproduction of an existing coat of arms, Government seal or military insignia. This restriction does not apply to coats of arms, seals or insignia which you have created.