Hey guys. It’s been a little while since we’ve talked freelance around here, so I thought I’d share my most recent hiccup. I was recently designing something at the advertising agency I work at, and the piece I was designing used a font I had downloaded off the internet. To be exact, I downloaded the font from Font Squirrel specifically because it said that all their fonts were 100% FREE for commercial use. Since there was a chance the piece I was designing was going to be used for commercial purposes, I thought it was a perfect choice (and the piece would have a unique font).
This is when I learned my lesson. Not all things that say they are FREE are actually FREE. Whaaa??? (Then don’t tell me they are 100% free!). Apparently the larger agencies out there choose to buy FREE fonts just to cover their butt legally. I was blown away by this idea and had never heard of this happening. Free means free, right? Nope! So my seemingly free, really awesome font actually cost my project $200 dollars in the end. Fortunately it was no big deal for the client, but it got me thinking about font licensing and what “Free” actually means.
I’m curious what all of you designers/freelancers out there do when the font licensing issue comes along. Do you have your go-to font sites? Please do share :)