Minted’s internal review team evaluates all flagged designs from a merchandising and legal perspective. Designs or artwork that constitute infringement will be removed immediately, however, the standards of legal infringement are quite high and the majority of problematic pieces reported to us fall into the category of "too similar, but not infringement." Our review team uses the following criteria to inform their decisions, although each case is unique and there may be other considerations as well.
Color: Do the designs use the same or a similar color palette? Is this palette frequently used in this card category? Is this palette currently popular or trendy?
Layout: Do the designs use the same layout or photo placement? Is this a common layout/placement?
Type: Do the designs use the same or similar typefaces? Is the type laid out in a similar way? Do the designs use the same words or visual hierarchy in how the type is arranged? How common are these design choices?
Content: Do the designs use similar elements, themes, imagery, etc.? Are these elements common or currently trending?
Composition: Does the artwork use the same layout, orientation, movement, etc.?
Subject: Does the artwork use very similar elements, themes, imagery, etc.? Is the subject matter common or currently in trend?
Color: Does the artwork use the same or a very similar color palette?
Medium: Is the artwork executed in the same medium? Is the treatment of the medium very similar (e.g., brushstrokes)
We’re unable to share visual examples to protect artists’ privacy, but we have described some instances of reported copies and the subsequent decisions below.
Situation 1: During the submission period of a Minted Birthday Party Invitation Design Challenge, an artist identified a design submission that was remarkably similar to her own. The illustrated elements of the submission in question were extremely similar in terms of subject matter, color choices, and layout. The only difference was the font and the wording of the invitation.
Decision: After reviewing both designs, we agreed the design in question was too similar. We contacted the artist to explain that the submitted design is not eligible for a win or pick in its current form. Because the challenge was still active, we gave the artist the opportunity to edit the design and re-submit.
Situation 2: During the voting period of a Minted Save the Date Challenge, an artist identified a submission that was similar to his own. Both submissions were full-bleed photo designs with the words “Save the Date” in the same script font across the top of the design, with the couple’s name and date below in serif fonts.
Decision: After reviewing both designs, we did not find the design in question to be too similar due to the difference in serif fonts and spacing. Artists cannot lay claim to the use of a font in a generic greeting, and since type treatment and spacing are the core components of minimal, type-driven designs, minor differences can comprise the majority of the design decisions and are evaluated accordingly.
Situation 3: During the submission period of a Minted Photography Challenge, a photographer identified a submission that was similar to her own. The subject matter—a close-up photograph of a flower—in each submission was similar and in a similar hue, but the images were not identical.
Decision: After reviewing both submissions, we felt the subject matter and concept (macro photograph of a flower) are common enough that the artwork in question is not too similar.
Situation 4: After voting had closed for a Minted Art Challenge, an artist flagged a submission that was similar to work by a famous artist. While the submission, a line drawing, had been redrawn with a painted brush texture, the drawing itself was nearly identical.
Decision: This submission was close enough to constitute infringement, and we removed this design immediately before contacting the artist.
Once all members of the review team are aligned on their decision, we will reach out to the artist who reported the design to let them know what decision was made and what action (if any) will be taken.