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question about rights and exclusivity (not threadless)

so i'm doing a design for a new company - its specific for them as they wanted something new and within a particular theme. Ultimately my payment is only going to be a commission based on what they sell, so i'm wondering what kind of contract i should be expecting or asking for.
i know they want exclusivity which is fine by me, however should I be signing away the full rights to the design as well or should I ask to retain my copyright so that if things don't work out - they don't sell well or the company goes belly up (it's new) - I can then do what I want with it.


I don't have concerns about their reliability or anything like that, and I'm happy to do the work and take a chance that it might not pan out (more fool me maybe), but if that's the case should I be trying to hold on to my rights? I've never done something unique for someone on request before without a flat fee so I'm not sure what i should be expecting.


are you all going to ridicule me now for giving my time and effort and work away for nothing?

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radiomode
radiomode profile pic Alumni
2 designs submitted - Score now!

You mentioned that the design is in particular theme. Is it really specific? Will you be able to reuse the design elsewhere if the royalty does not work? If you are unable to reuse the design since it is really specific, there's no point on holding any rights.

digsy
digsy profile pic Alumni

Nah, it's not that specific - I could definitely reuse it - there were just some key elements they were looking to be included

Wharton
Wharton profile pic Alumni

Tantalising...

radiomode
radiomode profile pic Alumni
2 designs submitted - Score now!

in that case do not give full rights. Specify which products they are going to print on. Make sure to have exit/termination term in the agreement.

radiomode
radiomode profile pic Alumni
2 designs submitted - Score now!

Anyway, working with royalty is difficult. I have company promised me a lot, but delivered nothing. Other companies promised me nothing but delivered a lot. What made you sure about the company in the first place?

digsy
digsy profile pic Alumni

it's little things - i know someone who knows them so that personal connection makes a diff, plus it's the way they're going about promoting themselves and the kind of products they're stocking. Generally just an impression of the type of company they're trying to build. iI may not ultimately be a successful one, but I'm not concerned about being scammed.

I know what they're going to print on and at what costs to me royalties, i may ask for an exit clause though, thanks for your help!

digsy
digsy profile pic Alumni
Wharton said:

Tantalising...

it really isn't! Wharton, that print company you deal with, they ask for a similar deal don't they in that they want unique pieces for commision only. how does that contract look - do they want exclusivity and do you get to keep your rights?

Wharton
Wharton profile pic Alumni

The contract I have has an exit clause built into it and the opportunity to extend or withdraw. I asked to use some of the work that was under contract on for an apparel license with a different company and she ok with it. She's pretty sweet.

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