What are the copy right laws on 3D printing

Say I downloaded a file on thingverse could I then sell that or say I put a logo on something that I’ve printed such as coke cola or something would that be allowed

Define “allowed”.

If you’re asking if you’re opening yourself up for a copyright infringement infringment lawsuit and being sued into oblivion, then my answer would be “Yes, you’re doing something that’s not allowed” and your best hope is to first put all your assets in your cat’s name to try and protect them.

No I’m looking to start making kids toys and selling them on Amazon but haven’t started yet is just an idea thought I best look in to it first

the easiest way around it is if you just want to sell someone else’s design, contact them and have an agreement in place for reproducing their item. You may have to pay them a royalty but that’s only fair.

If you want to add a copyright logo to it I would stay away from that one.

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Ok thank you is there some videos on how to use cura as am ganna design my own as well was just interested about the copy right side of things

there are a ton of tutorials on Cura, If you are looking for designing have heard a lot of people using tinkercad. personally I use Fusion360 or solidworks

I’m looking to start making kids toys and selling them on Amazon

You should be talking to a lawyer that specializes in trademark licensing today. I think (and I am not a lawyer) you are leaving a “paper” trail by posting your intentions here that could come back to hurt you in court if you proceed in any way.

Sorry if I come across as alarmist, but I don’t want you to find out what a pitbull in a bespoke suit looks like.

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There is a lot of litigation going no concerning people selling items printed off of Thingaverse. Most of it is for non-commercial use only. Using a company trademark on your products will ruin you financially.

There are a lot of issues here. Thingiverse often operates on a share and share alike non commercial use. You must be certain that you are not violating the designer/artists copyright. You also must not print a copyrighted object, honda has just been on a tirade for this, people printing exact copies of honda parts.

Third : children’s toys have a lot of regulations. I would be very surprised if a 3d printed one could pass, they separate the layers too easily and or are a toxic material.

You should have insurance, a separate space not in your house, a separate business not just doing that on your own. That means following safety standards too ppe ect.

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Here’s an article from the Canadian Legal Information Institute to read if you want to better understand the ins and outs of trademark law as it relates to 3D Printing:

The Impact of 3D Printing on Canadian Trademark Law: Selected Issues and Potential Solutions, 2017 CanLIIDocs 3527


Thank you @Emily1713 I hate these issues it is so complex. Made more complex with some of the right to repair legislation. I guess we shall see how it shakes out. On one hand if you are designing a replacement bit for something start with what was but change it I almost always do. I design i to print easier, counter strength issues of 3d printing, so it is at least a less clear cut violation.

You can go royalty free and payment free - IF you design your own toys and gadgets. Just make sure not to ‘copy’ others’ designs and SAVE YOUR DESIGNS, forever! Then the only things you have to worry about are people hacking/taking YOUR designs and the Payments associated with any Sales Site, like Amazon or eBay!

I’m late to this party but to add my own 2 cents:

First, I also am not a lawyer. I did work as a law librarian in Alberta for 7 years, but did very little with intellectual property law. Nothing I say here should be construed as legal advice, and it’s my opinion that anyone who starts a business doing anything should talk to legal experts first.

With that out of the way:

The notion of adding a Coca-Cola logo to a file downloaded from Thingiverse and then selling prints of it would seem to violate both copyright and trademark laws.

The Coca-Cola logo is a trademark of Coca-Cola. Using trademarks without permission is against the rules. Trademarks can be lost if not enforced, which means Coca-Cola would have to sue you the second they found out about your actions. But trademarks only apply in a specific area. So you might have a defence by arguing your toy had nothing to do with Coke’s business. On the other hand, I’d be shocked if that logo wasn’t trademarked for toys, too. So… yeah, lawsuit incoming from major corporation.

Second, in Canada one can copyright a computer program or file. An STL is a computer file. Therefore, in Canada STLs would be protected by copyright law. Meaning the creator of the STL can decide what other people are allowed to do with it. So, unless the thingiverse license allows you to print copies of the file and then sell them, you’d also be at risk for a lawsuit for copyright violation. Now, obviously the creator of the file can’t sue you until they notice what you’re doing, but it would still be a violation.

Finally, in my personal opinion this project would be a dick move. You didn’t create that file. Someone else did, and shared it for people to print for their own use. Most things on Thingiverse aren’t shared so that someone else can make money off of it. Likewise, you didn’t create the Coca-Cola logo. It’s not yours to use. So, basically, your entire plan is to steal other people’s work and use it to make money. And yeah, the world is full of examples of that - just search for, well, anything on AliExpress - but just because something is common doesn’t make it right. And obviously the world is full of people who are willing to buy stolen or knockoff items in order to save some money. But I still think it’s pretty rude.

As others have suggested, My advice is either get explicit permission to use the STLs and the logos, or design your own. I also like Fusion 360 for CAD work, though I’m definitely a pure amateur there.

Oh, and thanks for the link, @Emily1713 . I’ll need to give that a good read!

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Thank you all was just intrigued about what the laws are I’ll definitely be making my own stuff just ganna do some trial and error and learn the basics fusion 360 is a common one for people to use if it user friendly thanks so much guys for all the help and support