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Releasing layered Photoshop files to clients
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Mac Elite
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Sep 2, 2005, 01:45 AM
 
I have recently run into a problem that I experienced before with a clients and would like to know how other designers deal with it.

Recently I did a poster and postcard for a client. They are a non-profit organization and a friend of a client/friend. I did this poster/postcard with a very big discount because of the before mentioned reasons. I briefly mentioned that both myself and the photographer were doing this for a discount and therefore we would receive a small "by-line" on the items printed. The items were printed without incident. On the invoice which they paid the postcard/postcard clearly said "Single use".

Afterwards they wanted 4 newspaper ads created (again for a very, very low cost). I agreed and made one, sent a proof (but no final, printable version yet).

The same day the client contacted me asking them to send them the layered files so that another company could create the website ads based on the poster. I said that turning over the layered files wasn't possible and I explained why. I did offer to send for free a resized web version FLATTENED to the web designer. He didn't seem to understand why I wasn't turning over this file and latter sent me an email saying that he didn't want mine or the photographers "by-line" on the future ads.

I think that he is saying this out of spite because I wouldn't release the files to them.

Now as far as I know unless it is specifically stated in the contract or verbally the client does NOT own the photoshop files, they are simply licensing use of the poster for the original intent.

IF i was to turn over the layered files they could easily sell or give the poster to another production company for use next year and simply change the dates on the production. The poster is for a classic play that is produced all over the world.

Same goes for the website as a resized web version is something I would normally charge for but they have given the project to someone else. Me offering to send them an already resized version for free is already generous as far as I am concerned.

Either way, I don't want to make enemy's but I am already severally discounting these people and have gone out of my way to be accommodating.

How would you best describe this situation to a client?
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Sep 2, 2005, 05:00 AM
 
Exactly as you did. Explain to them that the reason the 'other designer' would like the layered PSD or TIFF is so they can alter YOUR design, which you have done very inexpensively and for single use and blah blah blah.

Explain that what you did is done as a precaution to prevent others from taking your idea and making it their own without giving you credit. Make it clear that -it is stealing.-

If the client would like to BUY the design at a reasonably greater price, let them know that you would be willing to SELL them the design, and they are free to do with it what they wish.

Let me know what you think.
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Sep 2, 2005, 06:53 AM
 
A layered Photoshop file is sort of like a trade secret. You're not obligated to hand it over unless that was in your original contract. In this particular case, where they're trying to give someone else the work, negotiating a new fee for the layered file would not be out of place.

It would be like buying a lawnmower, and then demanding the manufacturer's blueprints and engineering notes so you can give them to another manufacturer and get more lawnmowers.

If the other design house was competent anyway, they wouldn't need the layered file.
     
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Sep 2, 2005, 08:39 AM
 
Originally Posted by CaptainHaddock
A layered Photoshop file is sort of like a trade secret. You're not obligated to hand it over unless that was in your original contract. In this particular case, where they're trying to give someone else the work, negotiating a new fee for the layered file would not be out of place.

It would be like buying a lawnmower, and then demanding the manufacturer's blueprints and engineering notes so you can give them to another manufacturer and get more lawnmowers.

If the other design house was competent anyway, they wouldn't need the layered file.
It's certainly not a question of competency. I've often asked for layered files to allow me maximum flexibility and resizing. Often, acquiring files happens before any design work starts. Flatten files can often end up to be the wrong resolution and size. BTW, schematics, etc., notably for lawnmowers are usually available.

Not to burst anyone's bubble, but there's no such thing as trade secrets regarding PS processes. NOTHING we do in graphic design can be construed as proprietary or unique. It's been done before, somewhere. What you are being paid for is your particular talent and ability to design using and manipulating elements and techniques. You are providing a service for which you charge a fee. This should not be confused with copyrighting a finished design, illustration, photograph, etc. However, setting up usage conditions usually leads to somebody ultimately misunderstanding something, getting pissed off and it's a great way to lose clients.

The solution lies in learning from the shortcomings of original deal. It is you that decides on or agrees to a discount fee. If you are unhappy about that, stop the discounting. If you value this particular client and he needs the layered files for another vendor who is doing work you wouldn't be doing, for the good of a on-going relationship, give'em the files. If you don't care if you get future business, then tell'em you lost the files or something. But be forewarned, the business world is much smaller the you think. The last thing you need is a reputation for being difficult. No matter how good or talented you are, there are TOO many people who can probably do what you do and even perhaps better.

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Sep 2, 2005, 10:54 AM
 
I disagree, I think that providing layered files basically means the client will never contact you again. In another thread here it was suggested to charge a flat fee for this.

As I am reading, what it would take is having in your contract that you own the files and that it would cost XXXX much to sell them. Your rate is calculated based on future expectations of work, if you know there will be less work, you may have originally decided to charge more (or rather, if you were expecting long term work, you might have charged less). You have to make that up when the client changes the relationship.
     
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Sep 2, 2005, 12:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi
I disagree, I think that providing layered files basically means the client will never contact you again. In another thread here it was suggested to charge a flat fee for this.
Exactly, they can hand this file over to ANYONE or even take a shot at making the ads themselves.
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Sep 2, 2005, 12:44 PM
 
No. Charge an obscene amount for the original files with layers in tact.
     
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Sep 2, 2005, 01:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by budster101
No. Charge an obscene amount for the original files with layers in tact.
Exactly what I would do if they ask for them.

Not only do I have to watch out for myself but the photographers work as with a layered file they could just use the image for anything they wanted so it would have to be a charge for the layered file plus they would have to buy the photo.
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Sep 2, 2005, 03:29 PM
 
I wouldn't have release the layered files either. The client was just being difficult, and they were taking advantage of your 'nice guy, friend of a friend' discount.

My credo is to always keep personal and business relations separate. Of course, that still doesn't guarantee a problem-free contract, but it helps.
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Sep 2, 2005, 03:52 PM
 
To their credit they are a small theatre company and will probably never need it again, I just can't risk my work or the photographers getting out there without being compensated.
( Last edited by Scandalous Ion Cannon; Sep 2, 2005 at 04:05 PM. )
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Sep 2, 2005, 03:53 PM
 
double..
( Last edited by Scandalous Ion Cannon; Sep 2, 2005 at 04:04 PM. )
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Sep 2, 2005, 04:00 PM
 
I don't care if they are your in-laws... they don't get layered files, especially if they are not all your property. You were given permission to use photos from someone for this project, if you give them out to some amateur, they'll abuse this for certain. Strangley enough, I would find someone like this client more apt to think they own it all before a larger company that has had more experience in these things.
     
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Sep 2, 2005, 04:26 PM
 
There are two ways to proceed:

1) Just hand over the layered files with a big smile and potentially keep your client.
or
2) Tell them you are not willing to hand over the artwork and potentially destroy any future projects from them.

You have the right not to give them your layered photoshop file, but do understand that it most likely will negatively impact your business. You need to think of your business and artistic trade as two separate things. Do not let one overtake the other.

If it were me (and again, I'm more business focused and don't know your situation with the client) I would happily hand over the files and say "and if there is anything else you need, please let me know."

Sure... you can try to sell the design for more money... or negotiate a higher price for the single layered Photoshop file, but again... you may be (inappropriately) viewed as holding "their" project for ransom. IMHO, it's better to have a happy client (with a few less dollars in my pocket) then an unhappy client with zero dollars in my pocket.

If you are good... and the price is right, they will be back.
     
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Sep 2, 2005, 05:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
2) Tell them you are not willing to hand over the artwork and potentially destroy any future projects from them.
Like I said they are a client that is getting steep discounts, so if they never come back it is no real loss.

I am not the type of person who is thrilled to get any business I can and up giving away my work and drive my business into extinction.
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Sep 3, 2005, 02:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by Scandalous Ion Cannon
Like I said they are a client that is getting steep discounts, so if they never come back it is no real loss.

I am not the type of person who is thrilled to get any business I can and up giving away my work and drive my business into extinction.
Whether you offer your photoshop files at an additional fee or for free, I would add certain conditions to the use of those files, like a mandatory credit line so no one else can claim authorship of (in other words, steal) your work... or terms that limit the usage to whatever you may agree to, so that you know where and how to expect your work to be shown, or maybe that the piece must be used as a whole and that individual components won't be taken out and used in unrelated projects, etc.

Either way, they will probably have to negotiate with the photographer separately in order to get her/his work, so it isn't just a simple matter of handing over all of the files.
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Sep 3, 2005, 05:58 PM
 
IMHO, I would still happily (OK, begrudgingly) hand over the Photoshop files. I realize you gave them a steep discount, but that's beside the point. You could have done it for free and I would still give the same advice. Just because you may not want to deal with them not... you may be kicking yourself down the road when they want something MUCH bigger... with a real budget.

IF YOU CHOOSE NOT TO HAND OVER THE FILES
You will retain your design, you will lose a client and have bad word of mouth from everyone on their end.(remember, people are MUCH more likely to spread a bad experience vs. a good one).

IF YOU CHOOSE TO HAND OVER THE FILES
You will retain your design, they will have the original layered Photoshop files which they can hand over to another designer to spawn out into variations of your ad... for different forms of media. You also will probably retain the client (or at least the positive experience). SIDE NOTE: I wouldn't be surprised of the "other designer" isn't able to do what they want him/her to do... at which point, they would come back to you (= more money)

A majority of design business comes from repeat business and good word of mouth. Chasing after your design will be a financially and emotionally draining experience...

I hire freelance designers on a frequent basis. I generally call their clients to ask how the project went. If they said "They were great, but we had a major problem with them we asked for the original artwork" It would raise red flags.

P.S. I've seen the project in questions and I feel the design is amazing!
     
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Sep 4, 2005, 04:26 AM
 
That's a tough cookie. I think it's just up to you. I NEVER give out original files. I say this to the client from the beginning. WIth this I always say that if they need to send this or that somewhere I'll do it. I will send the needed files to where they need to go, but I never give them a copy of the original file.

I do consider it to be their property, but in my eyes they own the finished product, not the production process, so they have no right to have the PSD or AI file, because that means they can alter the design. And I tell them this as well, and they know beforehand they will not get an original file from me, but if they need it somewhere I'll send it in the right format, dimensions, etc.

I do this because in my very beginnings I did give out some original files, and guess what, I never heard from them again. Simple : they have some cousin or whatever who knows a little about computers, and he'll fix it, he'll make us what we want, for no cost. It's just some rookie who get a copy of Illustrator or PS and does what they want, because the design, the hard part, has allready been done, now they can just go ahead and f*ck it up, for free.

I say no, don't give it, or sell it, for a good price. Protect yourself now, because if you do this just to keep them happy, so they spread a good word about you, soon they'll all be asking for the original files, because, well you did so with client X.

Just me

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Sep 4, 2005, 03:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by d.fine
I say no, don't give it, or sell it, for a good price. Protect yourself now, because if you do this just to keep them happy, so they spread a good word about you, soon they'll all be asking for the original files, because, well you did so with client X.
IMHO, once clients figure out that you are holding the design "hostage" (that's generally how they will see it)... they will find another designer. I'm guessing the original poster's client was upset and started looking for another designer [just a guess] and that designer asked the client to get the layered photoshop files.

Just a guess, but I've seen it before.
( Last edited by production_coordinator; Sep 4, 2005 at 03:49 PM. )
     
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Sep 4, 2005, 07:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
IMHO, once clients figure out that you are holding the design "hostage" (that's generally how they will see it)... they will find another designer. I'm guessing the original poster's client was upset and started looking for another designer [just a guess] and that designer asked the client to get the layered photoshop files.

Just a guess, but I've seen it before.
No he already had a web designer, either way they wouldn't get it without paying me.
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Sep 4, 2005, 11:48 PM
 
Scandalous Ion Cannon, I still fully respect your position on your design, but would still argue that it's not worth angering (or losing) the client over one design [others obviously disagree]... but perhaps I'm thinking with my wallet. I guess it all depends upon what your goals are. I never really cared for the production end of things when I was a designer... so I never felt bad handing over photoshop or illustrator files...

In my experience, when I did hand over files (Quark, Photoshop, Illustrator) I would get a handful of questions (about two weeks later) like:
- "About those files you sent... I'm getting an error when I open them... something about fonts"
- "How can you create a PDF from the Quark files"
- "How do I open these 'cork' files in Word so I can edit them"
- "The web developer only has Photoshop 5 and can't seem to open your Photoshop files [CS2]"

Even when the did find someone that knew what they were doing... they always seemed to come back. I've had people swear they would never use me again because they "found out" I was using Quark to design with (as compared to Word)... only to have them come back and pull a 180.

When clients realize you are on their side, they will keep coming back to you. When they feel like you are working against them, they will find someone else.

Just my 2¢
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 01:00 AM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
In my experience, when I did hand over files (Quark, Photoshop, Illustrator) I would get a handful of questions (about two weeks later) like:
- "About those files you sent... I'm getting an error when I open them... something about fonts"
- "How can you create a PDF from the Quark files"
- "How do I open these 'cork' files in Word so I can edit them"
- "The web developer only has Photoshop 5 and can't seem to open your Photoshop files [CS2]"

Just my 2¢

Do you charge them to answers those questions?
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Sep 5, 2005, 09:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
Scandalous Ion Cannon, I still fully respect your position on your design, but would still argue that it's not worth angering (or losing) the client over one design [others obviously disagree]... but perhaps I'm thinking with my wallet. I guess it all depends upon what your goals are. I never really cared for the production end of things when I was a designer... so I never felt bad handing over photoshop or illustrator files...
It's just a different way of thinking about your wallet. Someone who has gotten his hands on the original design file 1- isn't coming back, and 2 - has the freedom to alter/change/f*ck up your design as he-she pleases. Where's the profit in that? They only came 1 time, plus some guy could be spewing out crap designs with your name on it. I not only think about my wallet, but about my reputation as well.

I'm not against giving them the original files, I'm against giving them for free. Because, even if you choose not to believe it, they all have a cousin or whatever that thinks he knows his was around computers, and therefore thinks he can just as well make all the other designs they need, once they get the original file.

Up untill now, I have not lost a single client because I refused to give them an original PSD or AI. Maybe it's in the way I explain it, or maybe I've just been lucky, but they all know they won't get them for free, period. But I have lost clients to whom I gave original files. They don't come back.

I do all the client asks. I can go waaaay beyond to do what they ask, and see that everything is finished/done as they want it done. But I have my demands too, like f.e. not handing over original files for free. And clients should respect and understand that, of course I know not everyone does.

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Sep 5, 2005, 10:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
There are two ways to proceed:

1) Just hand over the layered files with a big smile and potentially keep your client.
or
2) Tell them you are not willing to hand over the artwork and potentially destroy any future projects from them.
You're letting the client hold you hostage, then.

If they signed a deal clearly labeled "single use," they know they're being asses, and maybe it's not the type of client you want, anyway. Also, if they're asking for the layered file, it's pretty obvious they're taking their business elsewhere, anyway. So you can NOT hand over the file and lose the client, or you CAN hand over the file, and lose the client, after giving your design secrets to your cheaper competition, who has undercut you.

How you do something to achieve the desired effect is nobody's business. I see lots of shady situations as a printer, like people walking in with jpegs that a designer clearly supplied simply for viewing or approval, pending payment, and telling me "it's all they gave us." I also have designers who send their print work to other printers call me and ask me how I adjust for dot gain. It's usually clear at this point that they're distressed because they've gotten an inferior proof from a cheaper vendor, and rather than sending me the work and paying the proper price for a good print, they want to steal my expertise. I of course decline, with varying levels of politeness, depending on the situation. I've had designers decline bids, then call me a week later, from the cheaper print shop, in distress. Sometimes I can make a client out of these folks when they see their mistake, sometimes though, they're just assholes.

When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. -- Jonathan Swift.
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 12:37 PM
 
I see people like production_coordinator who bend over backwards for clients in fear of losing them. They end up running themselves into the ground as people take advantage of their kindness.
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Sep 5, 2005, 04:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by Scandalous Ion Cannon
I see people like production_coordinator who bend over backwards for clients in fear of losing them. They end up running themselves into the ground as people take advantage of their kindness.
You make it sound like my clients force me to "bend over backwards" via fear. And that's simply not true. My clients and I have a wonderful working relationship. My portfolio is also DEEP... and I care more about my portfolio as compared to how my artwork could be changed.
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 04:47 PM
 
My rule of thumb is, that if I have a client (a regular graphical challeneged joe), that contacts me about a job then i quote them for the final result and nothing more. NO SOURCE FILES. Now, IF a design house freelances me to do work, like a commercial or a logo, they always pay me for everything. the final result as well as the process. To avoid this as a business professional simply put on invoice "does not include process files, only final result" so, for avergae joes, it's costs more, much more. and for design companies, well, they pay for them to begin with.
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 05:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
You make it sound like my clients force me to "bend over backwards" via fear. And that's simply not true. My clients and I have a wonderful working relationship. My portfolio is also DEEP... and I care more about my portfolio as compared to how my artwork could be changed.
What about money?
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Sep 5, 2005, 08:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by Scandalous Ion Cannon
What about money?
Money has never been a problem.
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 08:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
Money has never been a problem.
Just out of curiosity, do you have an online portfolio?
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Sep 5, 2005, 09:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Scandalous Ion Cannon
Just out of curiosity, do you have an online portfolio?
Unfortunately... no, I've never needed one...
     
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Sep 5, 2005, 10:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
Unfortunately... no, I've never needed one...
Well you just got everything working out for ya. And now we know your secret.
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Sep 5, 2005, 11:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Scandalous Ion Cannon
Well you just got everything working out for ya. And now we know your secret.
Ha... in all honesty, I primarily do larger catalogs and fewer and fewer logos/cards/ads... also, if your way works for you, I shouldn't question it. To each their own...

If it weren't for clients... the design industry would be wonderful!
     
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Sep 6, 2005, 02:53 AM
 
Seems like it could go either way. I'm chiming in late here, but I recently handed over some .psd files to a client's in house "web designer" and I sort of feel dirty about it (the guy recoded my css layout in golive). It didn't end up great for me, but I got paid. I don't think the client was totally happy with the deal, either. Why would they want the source files if they're completely happy with the relationship?

I don't expect to get any repeat work from them, but at the same time, didn't want to make an enemy either. I have a tough enough time hanging onto clients, I don't need enemies.
     
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Sep 6, 2005, 08:19 AM
 
It's a fine line between placating a difficult client and telling them to go fluck themselves.

     
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Sep 6, 2005, 01:40 PM
 
The client contacted me again today about the matter. He was very friendly about it and wanted to understand my reluctance on sending the files. I explained it to him and he said he totally understood. He said he would be willing to sign a contract saying it would never be used for anything without my permission.

This is the one time I might let that be the end of it.
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Sep 6, 2005, 03:13 PM
 
I still don't see why a client would ever need them. Ever.

I hate that. Think about it this way. You develop a game for some company, and then they ask for the source code... WTF? No way. They can license it and updates from you but not the source code.

It's called repeat business.

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Sep 12, 2005, 01:35 PM
 
I fully understand both sides of this argument, but I'd like to throw this one out there for the chewing-on: how does this differ from going to a photography studio for graduation pictures, then demanding the negatives? As far as I'm aware, photographers almost *never* release their negatives, at any price, because they know that the primary reason the person wants them is so they can go somewhere else to have multiple prints made. Why can photographers get away with being stingy like this but graphic designers can't?

Also, is there a copyright issue here? I know you can't copyright a process (or recipe), but you *can* copyright the design. If there is no written, signed document spelling it out, who owns the copyright on your work? Initially, the designer does, but does this change when the designer gets the check? Is that check for just the final product, or all the pieces and scraps he made along the way? So even if you did offer up your Photoshop layers to your client, if they went and changed things slightly and re-used it, would that violate your copyright, or did the client own the copyright all along because they paid you?

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Sep 15, 2005, 03:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by birdman
I fully understand both sides of this argument, but I'd like to throw this one out there for the chewing-on: how does this differ from going to a photography studio for graduation pictures, then demanding the negatives? As far as I'm aware, photographers almost *never* release their negatives, at any price, because they know that the primary reason the person wants them is so they can go somewhere else to have multiple prints made. Why can photographers get away with being stingy like this but graphic designers can't?

Also, is there a copyright issue here? I know you can't copyright a process (or recipe), but you *can* copyright the design. If there is no written, signed document spelling it out, who owns the copyright on your work? Initially, the designer does, but does this change when the designer gets the check? Is that check for just the final product, or all the pieces and scraps he made along the way? So even if you did offer up your Photoshop layers to your client, if they went and changed things slightly and re-used it, would that violate your copyright, or did the client own the copyright all along because they paid you?

-birdman
Legally, the client can never own the copyright to any creation unless they were given explicit ownership of those rights. Simply paying for the work does not equate to ownership, in any case.

Ownership of the copyright comes the moment you author something. From there, it is up to the author to decide what to do with the copyright.

The reason why photographers usually have it easier in these situations is because...

1. what they produce is more tangible in nature. Whether it is in the form of a negative or a print from a digital copy, it is much easier for someone to imagine themselves paying for a print than for "rights" to a "design." The photo is the complete work, after all — with a "design," the client is not getting the "complete work" (all of the photoshop files, for example), just the final composition.
2. content. With something like a photograph, the work is the content. On the other hand, design is usually built around the content (in cases like websites, publications, etc). A lot of clients tend to equate owning the content of a work to owning the design as well, which is not correct.
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Sep 15, 2005, 04:44 PM
 
himself... excellent post...

That being said, a designer can't own an "idea" If the client says to designer A "I want it to look like XYZ [very specific]" and then goes to designer B and says the same thing... Designer A can't sue the client or other designer if they come up with similar designs.

As I've grown older, I've become MUCH more specific with my wording when handling contracts. Some designers are very defensive when I tell them that I want them to sign over copyright to logos... but why would I ever have a logo where I didn't have copyright?

I've been on both sides of the fence and haven't come to terms with exactly how I feel.
     
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Sep 15, 2005, 06:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator
himself... excellent post...

That being said, a designer can't own an "idea" If the client says to designer A "I want it to look like XYZ [very specific]" and then goes to designer B and says the same thing... Designer A can't sue the client or other designer if they come up with similar designs.

As I've grown older, I've become MUCH more specific with my wording when handling contracts. Some designers are very defensive when I tell them that I want them to sign over copyright to logos... but why would I ever have a logo where I didn't have copyright?

I've been on both sides of the fence and haven't come to terms with exactly how I feel.
Logos are one of the few exceptions where a designer typically hands over all ownership rights to the client — often referred to as a "buyout" — since they need the freedom to put their identity wherever they need to (this also gives them the freedom to alter it however they want. oh well). This is one of a few reasons why identity systems tend to be so expensive, since the designer is giving up all claims to ownership, and any potential future profit.

Also, while a designer can't own an idea, they can own the creation that results from the idea. However, the trademark law does allow for individuals who simultaneously create identical items to each hold individual copyrights, as long as it is proven that they were developed independently... yeah, it sounds strange, but it's there.

But, as in your example, if the client is giving specific parameters for the design (like a blueprint or schematic), then the designer didn't really "design" anything. It was "designed" by the client, and the specifications were handed off to the designer (more like a production artist in this case) to produce the final. It depends on how much creative input the designer has over the process. Any original additions to the design can be claimed as original work, of which the designer grants certain rights to the client. That's how I would view it, but it can get a little murky in this area.
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Sep 16, 2005, 07:43 AM
 
Eh, clients that get snarky about little bit amount of money aren't worth keeping as clients. If x designer doing it cheaper for a few bucks difference is really going to make them dump you then screw em, give em the psd's and tell them to go screw themselves and find better clients.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 07:44 AM
 
I mean, if you're web designing you give up your source files, what makes print so high and mightier now anyway? Plus, why are you making posters in photoshop anyway?
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 08:23 AM
 
I did one poster once for a client and the file was HUGE... 2gb, and his printer refused it. Said his "computer didn't have enough memory, and could not open it up. Turned out he didn't even have stuffit... and was too lazy. When I went there with a new file that was smaller, he was a real jerk, and said he didn't want to load anything on his computer (stuffit), so when I asked for my other disc back, he said he threw it out in the back. I could have strangled the guy. WTF?

Anyhow, never give source files to any client unless it's arranged from the get-go. I don't do it. It's not theirs, only the end result.

I'm sick of clients who demand things they should know they have no rights to. One threatened to sue me, and this was after not even talking with me, I couldn't get back to him so he left 5 messages in a row... what a kook. Had to set him straight. No contract, no source files, goodbye.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 08:26 AM
 
When clients pay you to make a poster, its their poster, its their creative to do with as they please. You don't own the quark document or psd, your client does. You're not an artist selling paintings here kids.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 11:30 AM
 
If it's something original I came up with?
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 01:50 PM
 
Its still theirs, they paid you to do it.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 05:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by godzookie2k
Its still theirs, they paid you to do it.
By that logic, I could buy an iPod, duplicate it and start my own company making iPod knock-offs.

"Well Apple... I paid for it... it's mine!"
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 05:23 PM
 
Not at all, you're not paying apple to produce the iPod, you're BUYING the iPod from apple, there is a world of difference.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 06:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by godzookie2k
Not at all, you're not paying apple to produce the iPod, you're BUYING the iPod from apple, there is a world of difference.
And likewise... when I design something... they get the design... not all the elements that got me to that design (I'm playing devils advocate here... and I mostly agree that many designers get overly protective of "their" designs).

Handing over layered photoshop files when it's something you have worked on for a long time (especially in a situation where you potentially could reuse the templates) isn't very black and white. The original poster indicated that he gave this organization a great deal... so you need to that into consideration. Also, they never talked about handing over layered photoshop files.
     
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Sep 16, 2005, 06:09 PM
 
noooooo They are not BUYING the design from you, they are *paying you to make it*, big difference. The content is theirs when all is said and done with, not yours. If you give up the psd's and you can use them as a template later (wtf? someone elses branding on another job in different colors or something? what kind of craptastic designer are you?) No one is saying you have to delete the psds from your computer or anything. Also, since when is their loyalty in business? They found someone who can deliver what you can for cheaper, deal with it, thats life.
     
 
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