Licenses and Intellectual property (IP)
This page explains in simple terms what you can do with Studio, its assets, and the contents you make with Studio. This isn’t a legal document or legal advice. Please read the Terms of Service for more information.
What’s Intellectual property (IP)?
- IP is a way to protect creations, including your own designs.
- There are different types of IPs. The most common are trademarks, copyright, and patents.
- Trademarks are names, signs or expressions that identify the source of a product. (LEGO®, NINJAGO®, Star Wars™, Harry Potter™, etc. are all trademarks.)
- Patents are protection on inventions: devices, methods, or physical designs. Note that the LEGO Group owns patents on many of its inventions and physical parts.
- Copyright covers the right of a creator of all kinds of works, especially artistic works (texts, drawings, pictures, movies, songs, sculptures, fictional characters, etc.). The overall look and design of the standard LEGO® Minifigure is protected by copyright.
- To distribute or sell something you made with or from someone else’s IP, you need their explicit written authorization.
- The extent of the protection differs between countries.
- Using someone else’s IP without their authorization may be allowed in certain conditions, primarily in non-commercial settings. Certain “fair use” exceptions exist for such purposes as private use, education, critique, and parody. It’s a good idea to consult your own legal counsel before relying on any exceptions to IP laws, though.
The Studio software and its assets
- You can download and use the Studio software at no cost.
- You cannot redistribute or sell the Studio software or parts of it.
- Some assets (like parts from LDraw) and companion software such as POV-Ray and Eyesight have their own licenses that allow for redistribution. Please check their policy for more information.
- Generally, the contents you created with Studio are your own. You can show, use, distribute and even sell your designs, building instructions, and renders, unless you’re using someone else’s IP.
- When you’re using someone else’s IP, you need their explicit written authorization.
- Studio is like a pencil: You can write a book with a pencil and the book is your own and the pencil maker has no say about that. But if you write a sequel to someone else’s book, the original author may not be happy with you, even if you don’t intend to make money.
Sharing on the Gallery
- BrickLink is stricter than some other platforms because it’s part of the LEGO Group that has its own IP to protect and has strict agreements (licenses) with other rights owners to use their IP.
- You can upload any content on My Studio. However, publication on the Gallery is limited by both your choices and possible IP infringement. It is also limited by appropriateness under the Terms of Service.
- Before allowing access to the parts list of your design (Partial access) or to your whole design (Full access), BrickLink checks that your design doesn’t risk infringing on someone else’s IP. That includes the use of trademarks or recognizable names in the description and the likeliness of your design with well-known products or works.
- The official LEGO sets and their themes are always copyrighted by the LEGO Group and they often use IP under license from other right owners (like Disney, Ferrari…).
Do not use official LEGO set numbers on any of the descriptions of titles.