Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Using Movie Quotes on T-Shirts

Dear Rich: I read your blog advice about the "No Soup for You" question and you stated that short phrases can't be covered by copyright. So just so I am clear, if I create t-shirts using famous phrases from movies and TV shows, I don't have to worry about a copyright infringement, as long as I don't place an image on the shirt that is connected to the movie or TV show - is that correct? That's kind of close. You probably don't need to worry about copyright claims (although some movie quotes have been protected under copyright). When it comes to merchandise and short phrases we're more concerned about trademark issues (as per our follow-up question about Seinfeld). And as Dear Rich readers know, our real concern is whether the movie company will see your work or care. If we were a betting blog, we'd bet that you'll be fine with your shirts (sans any other movie references).