Do Colors Have Copyright? 7 Colors That Can Get You Sued When Used

color copyright

There are are more than 10 million colors in this world – and 7 of these colors have copyright. 

We all know that originality is key when it comes to logo designing, painting, website designs, or any other form of art. Although it’s important to make your mark and ensure that you stand out from the crowd, it’s also important that your designs don’t infringe on any copyrights.

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In the world of color, it can be easy to accidentally cross the line and use colors that are protected by copyright law. Because even if there are so many colors to choose from, there are chances that you’ll put yourself in legal trouble. So, in this blog post, let’s look at the seven colors protected by copyright law!

These 7 Colors Have Copyright and are Protected by Law

“Do colors have copyright?” You might be surprised to learn that certain colors have the potential to cause legal battles and even get you sued! Yes, you heard it right – using the wrong shade can land you in hot water. So, buckle up and join us on this colorful journey as we unveil seven hues that could lead to legal woes when used without permission.

Mattel Barbie | Pink | Pantone 219C | #DA1884

Barbie pink as one of the 7 colors have copyright

When you think of Barbie, one color instantly comes to mind – pink! Mattel, the creator of the iconic doll, has trademarked a specific shade of pink called “Barbie Pink.” Indeed, the queen of the toy world has staked her claim on this color – be it the iconic Barbie dream house or glamorous wardrobe.

With this in mind, the Mattel Barbie Pink, a vibrant and eye-catching hue, has been protected by intellectual property law. So be careful if you’re considering using this shade of pink for your products or branding, as Mattel might come knocking on your door with legal action.

Tiffany | Blue | Pantone 1837 | #81D8D0

Tiffany Blue as one of the colors have copyright

Ah, that timeless shade of blue that instantly reminds us of love, romance, and Tiffany & Co. This brand has established itself in the industry as a symbol of luxury and elegance for good reason. You see, when it comes to luxury jewelry, few names carry as much weight as Tiffany & Co. 

Known for their exquisite diamond engagement rings and distinctive blue packaging, Tiffany has successfully trademarked their signature shade of blue. This means that unauthorized use of the “Tiffany Blue” can lead to legal repercussions. 

So, unless you’re fortunate enough to receive a gift from Tiffany, it’s best to admire their iconic blue from afar and never use it to your own advantage. 

Cadbury | Purple | Pantone 2685C | #3B0084

Cadbury purple as one of the colors have copyright

The rich, regal purple of Cadbury chocolate has become a symbol of indulgence and delight. Cadbury, the British confectionery company, has gone to great lengths to protect their exclusive right to use this shade of purple. Anyone attempting to use a similar purple in a way that could cause confusion or dilute Cadbury’s brand equity may find themselves facing legal action from this chocolate powerhouse.

  1. T-Mobile | Magenta | Process Magenta | #E20074
Process magenta as one of the colors have copyright

Founded in December 1999, T-Mobile is a tech giant that offers wireless telecom services for text messaging, video calling, and data communications. Being in the industry for over 2 decades allowed T-Mobile to hold a trademark for their specific shade of magenta, ensuring that no other company can use it in a way that may create confusion or dilute their brand identity.

So, if you were thinking of incorporating this specific shade of magenta into your logo design, double-check that you’re not crossing paths with this tech giant in one way or another. 

  1. UPS | Brown | Pantone UPS Brown 0607298 | #330000
UPS Brown as one of the colors have copyright

Next on the list is UPS and its ubiquitous brown. When you think of UPS, you can’t help but imagine their distinctive brown trucks and uniforms. It’s no surprise that UPS has trademarked this color, safeguarding its association with their brand.

UPS, or United Parcel Service, started its shipping and receiving management company in 1907. As one of the Fortune World’s Most Admired Companies this year, UPS truly has what it takes to deliver packages and go the extra mile to handle them with care. You won’t even have thought that this company started by using a borrowed $100 as an initial capital! 

Now, suppose you were planning to create a delivery service using a similar shade of brown. In that case, you might want to reconsider to avoid any potential legal battles with this Fortune 500 company. 

  1. John Deere | Green and Yellow | #367C2B & #FFDE00
Two colors have copyright

Another reason why colors have copyright because of John Deere, the agricultural machinery giant, who has staked its claim on the combination of green and yellow, creating an instantly recognizable brand identity. With its long history and loyal customer base, John Deere has vigorously defended its rights to this color scheme.

So, just in case you’re thinking of diving into the world of farming equipment, be cautious about straying into their green and yellow territory because these colors have copyright!

  1. University of Texas | Burnt Orange | Pantone 159 | #BF5700
Burnt Orange for colors have copyright

Last but not least, what has caused a stir is none other than the iconic Burnt Orange. This vibrant color, famously associated with the University of Texas, has garnered a reputation for being fiercely protected.

The university has built a strong association with this color over the years, using it prominently in their logo, uniforms, and merchandise. It has become synonymous with their brand, and they want to ensure its exclusive use. So, if you were to use Burnt Orange for commercial purposes without permission from the University of Texas, you could find yourself facing a lawsuit.

Final Thoughts

If you want to explore other colors for your logo without getting sued, Logomakerr.AI offers thousands of color schemes, pre-designed templates, and icons! Whether you prefer bold, vibrant colors or a subtler and elegant palette, this innovative tool has got you covered. And did we mention it’s free to use? 

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