Licensing (TOU)

At Pixel Scrapper we have two licenses: Personal Use, and Commercial Use. We rebel against the tradition of making people feel like criminals for wanting to download and build upon our creations, and these licenses are intended to be as simple and freeing as we can make them (read our manifesto to learn more about our philosophy).

Personal Use License

This license is intended for personal use, or for any use that does not generate income, and is not attached to your profession.

Please Do:

  • Use the item however you want for personal use!
  • Use the item for any non-profit, non-professional purpose (flyers, yearbooks, non-profit posters, etc.).
  • Adapt and remix the item, then post or give away the resulting adaptations for non-commercial use (as long as you do so for free, and you are not a professional designer).
  • Attribution is not required.

Please Do Not:

  • Use the item for commercial purposes (anything where you make money, or attached to your profession).
  • Distribute the item "as is" directly to others (refer them to the item's page instead).
  • Upload any derivative works to a stock image website.

Derivative Works Licensing:

  • Derivative works must be distributed for free, and under any non-commercial use license of your choice.

Commercial Use license

This license covers any commercial or professional use of an item, or any use which generates income or profit. Professional designers should use this license for anything they distribute, including freebies.

Please Do:

  • Use the item in commercial layouts, designs, posters, advertisements, etc.
  • Use the item on physical products like mugs, shirts, etc. which you sell.*
  • Adapt and remix the item, then sell or distribute the resulting derivative works as digital files.**
  • Use the item for commercial logo design (as long as you contact us about it first).
  • Attribution is not required (though always appreciated).

Please Do Not:

  • Resell or distribute the digital file "as is" without first getting permission from the item's designer.
  • Upload any derivative works to a stock image website.

Derivative Works Licensing:

  • Derivative works may be distributed under any license that you choose, as long as it does not directly contradict this TOU. Most common "PU", "CU", "S4H", and "CU for CU" licenses are fine.

If you make over $100k:

* You may use our graphics on printed physical products that you sell as long as your total income related to the sale of these kinds of goods is less than $100,000 USD per year. If you, your company, or your subsidiaries make more than $100,000 per year related to selling printed physical goods, please contact us to work out a special contract before selling items printed with our graphics.

** You may sell or distribute your derivative works as digital files as long as your total income related to selling or distributing digital files is below $100,000 USD per year. If you, your company, or your subsidiaries make more than $100,000 per year related to the sale or distribution of digital files, please contact us to work out a special contract before distributing any derivative works created with our graphics.

Commercial Use FAQs

What are the basics of how I can use commercial use items that I download from Pixel Scrapper?

If you are not distributing a digital file directly to other people, you may generally use it as you like, without restriction--no need to modify or remix the design (so go ahead and make printed papers, clothing, accessories, etc. to sell as you like). If you are using it for a commercial logo design, we just ask that you contact us first, and if you make more than $100,000 per year related to selling printed physical goods, please contact us to work out a special contract before selling items printed with our graphics.

If you are distributing a digital file directly to other people (for example, as an item in your own digital scrapbooking kit, or as a freebie on your website), you will generally need to modify or remix the item before you distribute it.

As long as you modify/remix an item, you may distribute it as you like (for example, in your own kits, as a freebie on your website), under any license you choose ("CU for CU" is okay), with one exception: no uploading to stock image websites (see below). If you make more than $100,000 per year related to the sale or distribution of digital files, please contact us to work out a special contract before distributing any derivative works.

As a rule, we are quite tolerant when it comes to people using our designs, and distributing their derivative works. We realize that licensing can be tricky, and we're on your side. We always give people the benefit of the doubt, we're happy to talk things out, and we won't come after you in a nasty way unless you are intentionally and blatantly abusing our work in a malicious way. So take a breath, and rest easy (read our manifesto to learn more about our philosophy).

Read the FAQs below for more specifics.

What counts as modifying/remixing an item?

That's a tricky question. Before we address specifics, you need to understand the point of the "remix" rule: at Pixel Scrapper we want you to be able to use our designs to springboard your own creativity, without having to worry that you'll get in trouble for distributing the cool derivatives that you come up with. We believe that creation builds on creation, and we want you to have the full freedom to take our designs, mix and match, build, layer, flatten, enhance, color, change--and then distribute and sell the creative "remixes" you come up with (see our manifesto).

But what if someone were to download everything on Pixel Scrapper, throw the stuff together into a few "kits", and then sell those "kits" on their own website, without making any changes to the files? That would clearly be an abuse of the system, and that's why we say that you need to modify and remix our designs before you distribute them: the goal is to springboard the creativity of other people, not allow people to steal our work and sell it as their own.

Here are some examples of great remixing:

  • Using one of our templates combined with your own work to create a unique design, paper, or embellishment.
  • Combining our templates or assets to create your own creative designs (using a heart brad together with a ribbon template that you color to create a unique ribbon with a repeating heart pattern, for example).
  • Taking a layered psd template, moving the layers around, recoloring some layers, flattening some layers, and adding some of your own layers.

Here are some examples of less creative remixing which are sometimes acceptable:

  • Recoloring a template or asset in a creative way, as long as the colors are very different from the original.
  • Taking a layered psd template, recoloring some layers, and flattening the image.
  • Adding some of your own textures to a graphic you download.

These techniques are sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work--but don't distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/re-textured graphics in it, for example. If you are using these techniques a lot, please contact our designers on an individual basis to "okay" things with them before you distribute anything.

Here are some examples that would generally not count as remixing:

  • Taking a red heart illustration, and applying a basic hue or saturation change -- not enough of a change.
  • Taking a layered psd template, and nudging the layers around a little bit, without any other modifications -- not enough of a change.

What counts as a "remix", in the end, is always going to be subjective. One rule of thumb is to imagine asking (or actually ask!) a few random people if they think the file you've edited is essentially the same as the original, or a "remix." If most of them would say "remix," then you are probably good to go.

At the end of the day what you should keep in mind is the intention of the rule, and your intention as a designer: if your goal is to make some quick money by passing other peoples' work off as your own, and you want to know the least you can do to get away with it, then you're not abiding by our remix philosophy, no matter what you do. If, on the other hand, you're like most designers, and are interested in using our designs to springboard your own creative work, then you can rest easy: don't sweat a particular edge case here or there ("oh no, I'm not sure if recoloring this one item is enough of a modification in this particular situation--will I get in trouble?" The answer is almost always going to be "no").

May I use your items to decorate mugs/clothing/accessories/etc that I sell in my Etsy store?

Yes.* You can always use our designs on physical goods that you sell, regardless of whether or not you change the design (for example, you could take this heart bottle cap, put it on a mug, and sell it directly, without modifying the image at all). If you don't change the design at all the original designer retains full copyright, but you are given full permission to use that design on physical goods.

* If you, your company, or your subsidiaries make more than $100,000 per year related to selling printed physical goods, please contact us to work out a special contract.

May I use your items in online or print advertising, website design, magazines, billboards, etc.?

Yes. As with physical goods, as long as you are not distributing the digital file directly to other people, you can generally use it as you like, without modifying the design at all. If you are creating a commercial logo, please contact us first.

If you are distributing a digital file directly to other people (for example, as an item in your own digital scrapbooking kit), you will need to modify or remix the item before you distribute it.

May I use your items in a commercial logo that I am designing?

When using our graphics in commercial logo designs, we ask that you contact us first. Generally we are happy to give the okay for logo use. If you or the company you are designing for make lots of money, we may need to work out something special.

May I use one or more of your templates to make my own digital designs which I then sell/distribute? (For example, using this ribbon template together with this heart button template and coloring them to make my own "heart ribbon").

Yes. As long as you are "remixing" the items that you download, you are free to sell/distribute the resulting adaptations in your own kits, or as freebies/downloads from your own website. The only restriction is that you do not distribute the resulting design via a stock image website.

May I combine some of your assets together to make my own digital designs which I then sell/distribute? (For example, using this flower embellishment and some other items, and repeating them over a textured background to make my own paper?)

Yes. As with templates, you can use assets to create your own designs which you then sell/distribute, as long as you are remixing and adapting the images. With assets, you need to be a bit more careful to make sure that you are making something that is uniquely your own. The only restriction is that you do not distribute the resulting design via a stock image website.

Does recoloring an item count as modifying/remixing it?

Recoloring is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work--but don't distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, please contact our designers on an individual basis to "okay" things with them before you distribute anything.

Does applying basic hue/saturation/brightness/etc changes, or other basic Photoshop filters count as modifying/remixing an item?

Generally, no. Like recoloring, this is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work--but don't distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, please contact our designers on an individual basis to "okay" things with them before you distribute anything.

Does applying a basic texture to an item count as modifying/remixing it?

Like recoloring and filtering, this is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work--but don't distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, please contact our designers on an individual basis to "okay" things with them before you distribute anything.

Does flattening a layered PSD template count as modifying/remixing it? (For example, can I flatten this floral paper template, and then distribute the flattened image?)

Generally, no: in addition to flattening a layered PSD template you will need to do some coloring, and/or other modifications in order for the resulting item to be considered a "remix."

May I sell/distribute your layered templates as layered PSD files, as long as I modify them?

Generally, yes, but be cautious: the file you distribute should be significantly different from the original template. Moving the layers slightly is not considered a "remix" (unless you were to flatten the file and distribute it as a jpg): you would need to do things like coloring some layers, moving and flattening some layers, and adding additional layers.

Imagine asking a few random people if they think the file you've edited is essentially the same as the original, or a "remix." If most of them would say "remix," then you are probably good to go.

May I take a bunch of your assets/templates without modifying them, and put them in a digital kit which I then sell/distribute?

Generally, no. You need to modify/remix the items that you download before you can distribute them directly to others as digital files. Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis: you can contact the item's designer to ask about your particular use case.

May I remix some of your items, and then upload the resulting images to a stock image website?

No. This is our one distribution restriction: nothing you make using our images may be uploaded to any stock image website. Examples of stock image websites include:

If you are not sure if a particular site counts as a stock image website, please contact us.

May I buy a single commercial use license and use it to sub-license your images to other individuals and/or companies?

Not without special permission, but we are happy to consider sub-licensing deals. Please contact us with your inquiry.

I purchased a download subscription, then canceled it: can I still use all the items I downloaded for commercial use?

Yes. The items you download from Pixel Scrapper are yours to keep and use under the license that you chose, even if your subscription is canceled, or expires.

Do I need to give credit to the original designer?

Giving credit back to the original designer is not required, but always appreciated. Please see our manifesto.

What license can I distribute derivative works (modified items) under?

As long as you have downloaded the item for commercial use, and have abided by our terms, you are free to distribute your derivative under any license that you choose, as long as doing so does not directly contradict these terms of use. Most common "PU", "CU", "S4H", and "CU for CU" licenses are fine.

Interpretation of these Terms of Use

Clearly the above terms leave some room for interpretation and discussion, partly because our terms are very generous, and partly because we put a lot of emphasis on understanding the "spirit" behind them, rather than worrying too much about a single edge case.

So who gets to decide if your use of our graphics adhere to our terms, or not? Well, we do. The final right of interpretation is always reserved by Pixel Scrapper, in its sole discretion, and intermediate right of interpretation is given to each of our designers.

If you are using our designs in a way that is clearly on the edge of what we have in mind with these terms of use we encourage you to contact each designer whose graphics you are using, and ask them if what you're doing is okay with them: send them an example of a kit that you are distributing, and let them make the call on whether it is too similar to their original work. Our designers are a very generous bunch (after all, they agreed to these terms of use!), and most of the time you'll find that they are happy for you to use their work, and/or happy to guide you in how you might be able to add a more creative touch of your own (though if you are distributing a lot of graphics with very limited changes, you might find that you need to do a bit more work before you're given the "okay").

Contacting our designers and talking things over before distributing something that is very similar to their original work is a common courtesy, and will make everyone feel a lot better than if they find your work being sold online, and feel they need to contact you about it. We make this easy by providing designer profiles next to every item on our site; you can also find a list of all of our designers at https://www.pixelscrapper.com/team.

Generally you will find that email conversations with our designers will go very smoothly. If things escalate, and you feel that you need a third party to arbitrate, feel free to contact Pixel Scrapper directly via our contact form. Be aware that, except for in extreme circumstances, we almost always side with our designers on these issues.

Changes to Terms of Use

Pixel Scrapper reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to change the Terms/Licensing under which our graphics may be used. The most current version of this licensing document (available at https://www.pixelscrapper.com/tou) will supersede all previous versions. We encourage you to periodically review the Terms of Use to stay informed of our updates.

Adapting This Document For Your Own Use

The text of this document is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0.

Want to adapt and use these Terms of Use to distribute your own work? You can! Just make sure to change/remove any reference to Pixel Scrapper, and include an attribution link to https://www.pixelscrapper.com/tou (so at the end of your TOU just say something like "these TOU adapted from the Pixel Scrapper TOU available at https://www.pixelscrapper.com/tou under CC BY 4.0").

More questions?

If you have read all of the FAQs above, and your question is still not answered, go ahead and contact us. Make sure to explain your question and your use case as clearly, and as thoroughly as possible.

Document last updated October 29, 2014.