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Copyrights Intellectual Property Litigation Trademarks

Not Your Property, Your Business: When Customized Products Become the Business of Rights Holders and Courts

In some instances the appearance of third-party intellectual property on items purchased, owned and customized by the purchaser may be legal under the doctrines of first sale and fair use.


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Customized designer products (Customs) are popular resale items that are seemingly always on trend. Customs can be a fun and creative way to show enthusiasm for a product or brand and are often welcomed by fashion houses, which may even collaborate with creators to come up with unique designs. Collaborations such as that between the Italian luxury brand Gucci and Harlem-based fashion icon Dapper Dan have been lucrative and have allowed brands to reach consumers who may not have otherwise been exposed to the brand.

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