Using famous brand logos in your design


I was thinking of using famous brand logos such as Coca Cola or Nasa or Mc Donalds in my Artwork?
Any idea if it is okay to do so?

If I were to use let us say coca cola logo then which option may I use? Please see attached 3 options.

Also, see these as references I found online where they sell work using famous logos:

Absolutely not! Not without agreement of the copyright holder and a licence to do so.

You can’t make money using somebody else’s copyright material. It’s theft as sure as gong into a shop and stealing a can of coke, or a pair of Nikes. Their logos are part of their capital.

The only exception under copyright law is ‘fair use’. If, for example, you were writing a critical piece on the evolution of the coke logo since its inception, the fair use clause would allow you to show examples. That’s my understanding. I am not a copyright lawyer. It is a minefield.

The golden rule – and the safest route with getting your pants sued off you – is; if you didn’t design it (or have an explicit licence), don’t use it.

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NASA, by the way, is a rare exception, in that most (you’d have to check re their logo) of their material is copyright free. In that, they have the copyright (it is automatically assigned to the creator if any material), but they put it into the public domain.

That really is a rare exception to the rule.

You could probably just say COLA as that is not an infringement. Although be careful to distinguish it from other -Cola brands.

NASA - you could just use SPACE - but make it significantly different.

@atjgraphics Nah mate, you can’t do that. You’ll definitely get sued.

In the US, the Coca Cola logo is Trademarked. It’s a far different violation from ‘copyright’ and can lead to higher damages against you. And Coca Cola, like Disney or the MLK estate are not shy about going after ‘the little guy.’ Usually it’s only a matter of time.

As for the two websites you posted, the shattered English and typos tells me they are counterfeit sites and as such have no bearing in your argument. “Everyone is doing it,” is not an excuse to follow the lemmings off the cliff. Doesn’t hold much weight in court either.

The NASA logo - here is the official site on usage. Just because it’s a government agency doesn’t mean you can use the logo indiscriminately.

Note that first paragraph. Even if your item falls into the categories of accepted use below, you still have to notify NASA in writing what you intend to do, and receive back an appropriate document granting you permission.

Thanks for sharing. I agree Logos are very important for the company as it represents the brand. Well finding the best Logo Designing Company is very hard and if you get the it I think you should avail services from them.

whut kitty

This OP wants to steal trademarked logos and print them on bootleg merchandise.
Doesn’t sound like they’re looking for logo design services.

I agree PD, that makes no sense at all :confused:


Repeating what’s already been said, Coca-Cola is a registered trademark. It might even be the most valuable trademark in existence. Use their trademark to make money and you open yourself up to, at a minimum, a cease and desist letter from their attorneys or, worse still, a summons to appear in court. I’m surprised that Coca-Cola hasn’t asked Etsy to remove the account of the person stealing their trademarks.

NASA’s logos are a little different. As government agencies, anything the government owns belongs to the public — including their logos. However, that still doesn’t mean you can use their logos. There are U.S. laws prohibiting the unlicensed use of U.S. federal agency trademarks. I suspect you wouldn’t have a team of attorney’s ready to sue you into oblivion, as you might with Coca-Cola, but there’s no point in challenging the U.S. government on this because you wouldn’t win.

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Or that Etsy themselves haven’t barred the sale. But, even if they did who ever is running that store would disappear and reappear named something else. They come and go fast. I even checked on this one and it says “Since 2020” so they are new and I’m sure they won’t be there long. And I’m also sure they are in an area that could care less what US laws are :wink:

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[Face palm] Why even ask? [Sigh]

Red—Please don’t give atigraphics encouragement of any kind. They might think they could get away with it. I say that because it is not only illegal, it is immoral. And major companies have lawyers all around the world that would love to have atigraphics for lunch—literally. And if they don’t think these lawyers could find out, then they better be looking over their shoulder every minute.

True case in point: I once owned a license to use some copyrighted background music I had purchased for video production. (FYI, I lived in a mid-sized city on the east coast with only two local TV stations at that time.) One day I got a call from a law firm in Los Angeles asking me if I had anything to do with a certain other (named) local video producer who had used their copyrighted material. I said no. They said thank you. The next thing I know, this other local competitor of mine was being sued for all they had.

Definitely I can see from your posts that this can be a risk. Thanks for the info.

For a few cents why take the risk. I will remove any coca cola designs from my shops: *** OR ***
Thanks for the advice.

Mod Edit - Links removed.

So was that a really long winded way to get your links up?

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