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Cut files, images and copyright

Did you know that the majority of images found on the Internet are copyrighted? And what about SVG cut files (or other formats)?

In this post, I will try to make things a little bit clearer for you.

My goal is not to tell you what to do or not to do.

My goal is simply to turn on some “lights” in your mind so that you are aware of what exists and to encourage you to inform yourself before using anything found on the Internet.

Also, the laws may vary depending on where you live, it’s up to you to verify.

Also, note that I am not a lawyer and that this text should not be used as a legal opinion.

Copyright on images

We often see “Copyright” or “©.”

The majority of images found on the Internet are copyrighted. This means that they belong to the author who created them.

It is your responsibility to verify if you are entitled to use the desired image and in the affirmative, what use is allowed.

How to find copyright-free images

You may have seen this logo before:

“Creative Commons” is a non-profit organization that offers free legal tools to facilitate the distribution of images.

Thus, “CC0” (or CC zero) indicates that the creator has given his image to the public domain and that it can be used without conditions.

But beware, the letters “CC” can be accompanied by different other letters that require different actions when using this image (like the one just above that required CC BY-NC)

You can click here to see all the definitions, but basically, the images you’re going to prefer are the ones using “CC0.” ?

Here is a site where the images (and SVG files) are of this type:

Cut files

Did you know that the majority of SVG cut files, even if you paid for them, are probably only for your personal use?

For this too, it is your responsibility to verify this information yourself in particular if you want to use the files for commercial purposes.

Most sites will offer you to pay an additional amount to obtain a commercial license if that’s what you want. This article contains links to affiliated products for your convenience and at no additional cost to you. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

That’s one of the reasons why I love Design Bundles and Font Bundles. Their “Premium License” automatically comes with a commercial license. No confusion or extra charges. You can see the details of their licenses available here.

Also, watch out for some independent sellers of SVG cut files (such as on Etsy) who do not respect copyright laws and will sell you SVG files of licensed images, logos, etc. Again, it is your responsibility to properly get the information.

What about the Cricut Design Space files?

Cricut has an“Angel policy” that allows the sale of products made from files included in Design Space (except licensed images like Disney, Marvel, etc.).

There are still several conditions that you can read here. Tip: scroll down to the “FAQ” section.

In conclusion, I won’t tell you what to do and what not to do!

My goal was simply to encourage you, for your safety, to make some verifications when using different images or SVG files. I hope I succeeded!

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