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Mandhlenkhosi avatar image
Mandhlenkhosi asked ·

Pepe Frog T-Shirt taken down?

It's not trademarked and there are other Pepe frog T-shirts from the Merch program which haven't been taken down. They didn't tell me why either.

I'm just annoyed since although it was simple it was a big money maker for me. It even had 5 star reviews! Any help?

merch by amazon
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Kristi avatar image
Kristi answered ·

Something doesn't have to be trademarked or copyright registered to be off-limits. Taking a stab at this one in hopes it will help you going forward.

1. Never use the "other people are doing it" excuse. I promise you here, I'm not saying this in a mean tone, I'm simply telling you that MANY people do things they are not supposed to do, it doesn't mean it's allowed. Maybe they haven't been caught YET. Either way, it's always best to look out for yourself because even if everyone else is doing it, it'll be a ding on your account if/when you get caught.

2. My best guess here - since I had to look up with Pepe Frog is - it's a fictional character created by someone. Therefore that person who created it OWNS ALL RIGHTS to their character. Take a look at this link: http://trademark-search.marcaria.com/?q=pepe%20frog&c=&co=us and you will see that there is a trademark pending. Pending trademark = protected. Additionally, I would encourage people to understand the difference between trademarks and copyrights (not suggesting you do not, but putting this out there for others who may read this). Many people are often confused by whether or not they can use things in part because of the "meme" culture. Where an artist might not have a problem with someone adapting a meme from their work, they will almost DEFINITELY have a problem with someone MAKING MONEY off of it. Rule of thumb, if you attempt to use something someone else created - be it a photo, fictional character, poem, song, design, etc... you run the risk of getting into trouble whether or not you can find a trademark or copyright registration on file.

I truly hope this helps. I would avoid (AT ALL COSTS) using someone else's character, book, song, painting, photo, quote, famous people, etc... You are just asking for trouble down the road. Also, you'll want to start looking at PENDING trademarks in addition to those that have already gone through.

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And I want to add - you'll find some sites that allow people to sell "FAN ART". Fan based art is a very dicey subject. It's often left to interpretation under the current law. Amazon has to be careful in this area because:

1. they make a ton of money and that makes them a huge target for lawsuits

2. illegal items are EASY to find on their site meaning if it's on there, the people who have rights WILL find it

3. the MERCH program opens them up to huge liabilities - say someone lists an illegal item within the Amazon marketplace (3rd party) - Amazon will remove the item once it has been reported of course - but it's not as big of a threat to them because of the law that states that since they didn't make or list the item they are not liable. With the merch program however - Amazon doesn't have that immunity - they are literally PRINTING the stuff themselves. So they will chose to be more cautious and not allow things that are "iffy".

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You make a good point; I didn't think that way about memes. I'm confused as to why I wasn't actually notified by Amazon about this though.

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Emily M avatar image
Emily M answered ·

It has, quite recently, been deemed as a symbol of racism.

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You learn something new everyday! I had never even heard of this character before.

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By some shady Jewish organization. Watch out US flag can be next fascism/nazi symbol, somebody must only paste "famous mustache" to it. It's funny for me when people freely allow terrorize themself by groups like ADL. Next omniscient holocaust company will tell you what is good what is bad. If goverment don't ban it, or international organizations like UN, then this mean it is ok.

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CanadaMediaGuy avatar image
CanadaMediaGuy answered ·

Did you use an image that is not your own original work? Unless you are the creator it was not your image to use.

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James avatar image
James answered ·

Did you invent pepe frog? Come up with some original designs

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MrApo avatar image
MrApo answered ·

Wow admins delete post, nice! Propaganda and pseudo political correctness is promoted!

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Don't forget the NEW WORLD ORDER owns everything & Amazon too, They TELL you what you can & cannot say. We live in an Orwellian fascist state now run by the THOUGHT POLICE.

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