We (Fontspring) have had a few foundries who have submitted updates to their EULAs recently, including the following language:
6.5 Large Volume Commercial Uses. Large Volume Commercial Uses include, but are not limited to, proper and authorized use of the Font Software in the creation of products, promotional campaigns and related materials; advertising campaigns and related materials; product packaging or printed materials that require or results in the creation of more than 250,000 reproductions; interior or exterior store signage for regional, national or international uses including billboards. Under such circumstances an additional license will be required.
I’m curious how other font designers read and react to this clause.
We’ve been very careful to avoid language like this in our own Fontspring Desktop EULA (which many foundries on our site distribute under), feeling that limits on the size of a company in this way are excessively complicated and cumbersome, especially when a larger company will typically license the fonts for more users and more money anyway.
To us, it revolves around simplicity of implementation. Metrics like reproductions and impressions aren’t easily measurable. What happens if an image made using the font goes viral? How is a company supposed to keep track of the number of impressions on various social media outlets with reshares and reposts? Are the impressions/reproductions cumulative or aggregate?
If it was easy and straightforward to track the growth of a company, or the reach of product distribution channels, then we probably wouldn’t have a problem with this clause. But it’s definitely not. Keeping track of something like this would be essentially impossible, and we can see how even a small company could find themselves violating the license pretty quickly without even realizing it.
While we want to support the designer in all of our decisions, making sure they’re adequately and accurately compensated for their work, we want to make sure we’re not doing so at the expense of the customer and at the expense of the font licensing experience.