Thursday, July 23, 2015

Copyright and Deviant Art is a website devoted to art, so of course they are very interested in intellectual property rights and protecting an artist's works from theft of various kinds.  Recently they posted a discussion (with many links for further reading) about copyright and the Internet, and much of this pertains to needlepoint designs.  You can see their presentation here.

We all know the impact that cross stitch designers have felt from rampant copying and distribution of their work.  They have lost thousands (and even tens of thousands) of dollars from this practice, and it has driven many designers out of business.  Needlepoint designs have also been impacted by copyright violations but in a different way.  The most obvious similarities to what has happened to the cross stitch world are the copying of stitch guides and charts to be sold on eBay and Etsy or handed out among friends.  I think the rampant copyright violation of unlicensed logos and brand names may catch up with some painted canvas designers and cause them great financial harm eventually.  But that is my opinion only.  Needlepoint is under the radar to some extent and that may protect the law breakers from being noticed by those they are ripping off as long as they stay away from Disney and Harry Potter items.  (These companies are well known for having legal teams dedicated to protecting their intellectual property and prosecuting violators.)

Regardless of all that, it is smart for all of us to educate ourselves about copyright and what's legal and what isn't.  The best discussion of copyright I know that talks directly about copyright in the world of needlepoint in the United States is on the Needlepoint Now website.  If you haven't read this, you probably should.

Thanks for staying legal and ethical!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
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© Copyright July 20, 2015 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.


  1. Thanks, Jane. It's good to be reminded from time to time. I have not personally had a problem, but I see so many charts on foreign Pinterest sites that have to be knockoffs. I hope none of your readers will buy from those folks. Many sell on eBay and Etsy.

    1. Keep an eye on Etsy and eBay and let folks know if you see something that isn't right. There's one seller in particular who sells shoplifted canvases and copied stitch guides on eBay that we are all trying to keep an eye out for to get the sales pulled. I imagine she'll move to Etsy sooner or later.