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Thread: Share a Free Font

  1. #1
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Share a Free Font

    Who else wants to create a little reservoir of free fonts and/or resource sites for them? I think the only rule is that the font should be free for commercial use or released under an open source license.

    I'll go first...

    Font Squirrel
    Since I stumbled on this site, I tend to check here for fonts before I go anywhere else.

    Gentium
    A nice, clean looking font that I've grown fond of.

  2. #2
    Cultus Gopherus MacAllister SuperModerator Medievalist's Avatar
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    1. Free font download sites are notorious for malware.

    2. Be aware that fonts may be free but not legal to distribute; they are governed by copyright as well.

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  3. #3
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    I felt the thread would be useful precisely because of problems #1 and #2. Font squirrel is a community based forum dedicated to free commercial fonts, and Gentium is an open source font released under an OFL. I was hoping they would start us out on a good foot.

    If the idea is too big of a headache, then we can just forget it.

  4. #4
    Cultus Gopherus MacAllister SuperModerator Medievalist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gale Haut View Post
    I felt the thread would be useful precisely because of problems #1 and #2. Font squirrel is a community based forum dedicated to free commercial fonts, and Gentium is an open source font released under an OFL. I was hoping they would start us out on a good foot.
    Nah, but a lot of people aren't working in design and won't know whether a fond or site is legitimate, so it'ts good to give them some advance warning.

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  5. #5
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Medievalist View Post
    Nah, but a lot of people aren't working in design and won't know whether a fond or site is legitimate, so it'ts good to give them some advance warning.
    True point. I'll see what else I can find for those who don't know how to tell the difference.

  6. #6
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    FontSquirrel is legit and is not your typical "free font" site. They are very selective in what they post and do heavy screening. They are also very detailed with licenses. For instance, they have Museo Sans/Slab 500 which are premium fonts, but those two in the collection are free. In order to use them in a web-embedded capacity you have to do a line credit. Every font on that site has license verbiage (if you click the link to a font there is a link to the license text). I use the site a lot for web-embedded fonts.

    There ARE definitely some sites I would be wary of using such as 1001 free fonts. Also, if a font doesn't have a license with it - don't use it.

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  7. #7
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aibrean View Post
    FontSquirrel is legit and is not your typical "free font" site. They are very selective in what they post and do heavy screening. They are also very detailed with licenses. For instance, they have Museo Sans/Slab 500 which are premium fonts, but those two in the collection are free. In order to use them in a web-embedded capacity you have to do a line credit. Every font on that site has license verbiage (if you click the link to a font there is a link to the license text). I use the site a lot for web-embedded fonts.

    There ARE definitely some sites I would be wary of using such as 1001 free fonts. Also, if a font doesn't have a license with it - don't use it.
    Sadly, there are more sites to be wary of than there are good sites. It's generally a bad sign if the licensing is accredited to "anonymous" or "unknown."

    Glad to see someone else recommending font squirrel. If you have anywhere else to refer us, that would be great. There's got to be more great places for fonts out there.

  8. #8
    i luv you giant bear statue AW Moderator Kitty Pryde's Avatar
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    I really like Blambot http://www.blambot.com which I think is for webcomic artists. Maybe 1/3 of their fonts are free. They are more on the fun and silly side, and I use them for work a lot (elementary school)!

  9. #9
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    http://www.google.com/webfonts

    Can't go wrong here.

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  10. #10
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aibrean View Post
    http://www.google.com/webfonts

    Can't go wrong here.
    Wow. I feel like a failure not knowing Google had a webfonts page. That's incredible. It has been bookmarked.

  11. #11
    Surfin' Storm Surge's Avatar
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    So I checked out Font Squirrel and found a couple fonts that would work for my current project, but because I'm cautious about these things, I contacted the creators to see if the licenses were correct. One said yes. The other said no, it's not free for commercial use.

    Bummer.

    But thanks for the info, everyone! At least I found one font to use.

  12. #12
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Optimus Princeps is one of my favorites, on dafont.

    What a great idea, by the way!

  13. #13
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Surge View Post
    So I checked out Font Squirrel and found a couple fonts that would work for my current project, but because I'm cautious about these things, I contacted the creators to see if the licenses were correct. One said yes. The other said no, it's not free for commercial use.

    Bummer.

    But thanks for the info, everyone! At least I found one font to use.
    Which font was that for future reference? Font Squirrel should be contacted to have it removed.

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  14. #14
    Surfin' Storm Surge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aibrean View Post
    Which font was that for future reference? Font Squirrel should be contacted to have it removed.
    This one.

  15. #15
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Dafont has come up. I've heard many a negative review from designers who have downloaded a virus from that website, including some who received a trojan virus from misleading advertisement banners.

    The reviews are mixed, but there are enough bad ones to warrant caution.

    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Surge View Post
    I think the designer was confused by your question. On their own website the license that comes with download is an OFL, which assumes free commercial use in designs, and even offers the font as a parent to derivative fonts, which would make it valid even for use as a platform for a logo design. If you asked about it's commercial use, it could be that the designer thought you were asking if it was okay to sell and distribute the font or part of a typeface as a commercial package for profit.

    If you downloaded the font with the original license, you have no obligation to pay for it. Though you might want to consider donating to them.


    By the way, should we change the title of this thread to Share A Font/Type. I was aware that they aren't technically the same thing, but I also know that most layman come in thinking typeface and font are synonymous.

  16. #16
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    DaFont also doesn't have enough screening and if their fonts don't have a readme/license in the zip file I am too wary of using them commercially.

    You would think most designers would be using an ad blocker.

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  17. #17
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aibrean View Post
    You would think most designers would be using an ad blocker.
    My understanding is that they were web banners that mimicked the appearance of download buttons for the fonts.

  18. #18
    Surfin' Storm Surge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gale Haut View Post
    I think the designer was confused by your question. On their own website the license that comes with download is an OFL, which assumes free commercial use in designs, and even offers the font as a parent to derivative fonts, which would make it valid even for use as a platform for a logo design. If you asked about it's commercial use, it could be that the designer thought you were asking if it was okay to sell and distribute the font or part of a typeface as a commercial package for profit.
    I said that I'd found the font on Font Squirrel as free for commercial use under the OFL and asked if the license was correct. The reply was that it was free for personal use under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

  19. #19
    waxing digital artistic Gale Haut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Surge View Post
    I said that I'd found the font on Font Squirrel as free for commercial use under the OFL and asked if the license was correct. The reply was that it was free for personal use under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.
    That's odd. I assume you contacted onebyfourstudio.com

    You might want to let them know that on their own website, the font is available for download under an OFL giving the exact opposite permission. I don't really see grounds for distributing one license and claiming another, but it would be wise to avoid using the font since the creator seems to have made a mistake. There might be someone wiser than myself in regards to licensing who can weigh in on this.

    The license I downloaded is below:

    Copyright (c) 2009, ◙◙◙◙◙ ◙◙◙◙◙◙, ◙◙◙ ◙◙ ◙◙◙◙
    ◙◙◙◙@onebyfourstudio.com

    This Font Software is licensed under the SIL Open Font License, Version 1.1.
    This license is copied below, and is also available with a FAQ at:
    http://scripts.sil.org/OFL


    -----------------------------------------------------------
    SIL OPEN FONT LICENSE Version 1.1 - 26 February 2007
    -----------------------------------------------------------

    PREAMBLE
    The goals of the Open Font License (OFL) are to stimulate worldwide
    development of collaborative font projects, to support the font creation
    efforts of academic and linguistic communities, and to provide a free and
    open framework in which fonts may be shared and improved in partnership
    with others.

    The OFL allows the licensed fonts to be used, studied, modified and
    redistributed freely as long as they are not sold by themselves. The
    fonts, including any derivative works, can be bundled, embedded,
    redistributed and/or sold with any software provided that any reserved
    names are not used by derivative works. The fonts and derivatives,
    however, cannot be released under any other type of license. The
    requirement for fonts to remain under this license does not apply
    to any document created using the fonts or their derivatives.

    DEFINITIONS
    "Font Software" refers to the set of files released by the Copyright
    Holder(s) under this license and clearly marked as such. This may
    include source files, build scripts and documentation.

    "Reserved Font Name" refers to any names specified as such after the
    copyright statement(s).

    "Original Version" refers to the collection of Font Software components as
    distributed by the Copyright Holder(s).

    "Modified Version" refers to any derivative made by adding to, deleting,
    or substituting -- in part or in whole -- any of the components of the
    Original Version, by changing formats or by porting the Font Software to a
    new environment.

    "Author" refers to any designer, engineer, programmer, technical
    writer or other person who contributed to the Font Software.

    PERMISSION & CONDITIONS
    Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining
    a copy of the Font Software, to use, study, copy, merge, embed, modify,
    redistribute, and sell modified and unmodified copies of the Font
    Software, subject to the following conditions:

    1) Neither the Font Software nor any of its individual components,
    in Original or Modified Versions, may be sold by itself.

    2) Original or Modified Versions of the Font Software may be bundled,
    redistributed and/or sold with any software, provided that each copy
    contains the above copyright notice and this license. These can be
    included either as stand-alone text files, human-readable headers or
    in the appropriate machine-readable metadata fields within text or
    binary files as long as those fields can be easily viewed by the user.

    3) No Modified Version of the Font Software may use the Reserved Font
    Name(s) unless explicit written permission is granted by the corresponding
    Copyright Holder. This restriction only applies to the primary font name as
    presented to the users.

    4) The name(s) of the Copyright Holder(s) or the Author(s) of the Font
    Software shall not be used to promote, endorse or advertise any
    Modified Version, except to acknowledge the contribution(s) of the
    Copyright Holder(s) and the Author(s) or with their explicit written
    permission.

    5) The Font Software, modified or unmodified, in part or in whole,
    must be distributed entirely under this license, and must not be
    distributed under any other license. The requirement for fonts to
    remain under this license does not apply to any document created
    using the Font Software.

    TERMINATION
    This license becomes null and void if any of the above conditions are
    not met.

    DISCLAIMER
    THE FONT SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND,
    EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY WARRANTIES OF
    MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT
    OF COPYRIGHT, PATENT, TRADEMARK, OR OTHER RIGHT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE
    COPYRIGHT HOLDER BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY,
    INCLUDING ANY GENERAL, SPECIAL, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL
    DAMAGES, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING
    FROM, OUT OF THE USE OR INABILITY TO USE THE FONT SOFTWARE OR FROM
    OTHER DEALINGS IN THE FONT SOFTWARE.

  20. #20
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    OFL is basically the same as open source. So yes, it's free for commercial use. They just can't be sold (i.e. as if you were a font dealer).

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  21. #21
    a demon for tea EMaree's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Useful thread -- I had no idea DaFont was risky, I've never ran into problems with their font downloads and it's my go-to site (because I like the way you can preview custom text in their fonts).

    I use antivirus software which might be why I haven't noticed problems, but I'll definitely start avoiding it in favour of some of the others here.

    Seconding Blambot as a really nice site for digital art and webcomic fonts.
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  22. #22
    Surfin' Storm Surge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gale Haut View Post
    I don't really see grounds for distributing one license and claiming another, but it would be wise to avoid using the font since the creator seems to have made a mistake.
    The whole reason I contacted the creators was to avoid things like this. Honestly, it's kind of discouraging because if I find another font that works, I've got to do this all over again and who knows if that one'll be right either.

    Oh, well...

  23. #23
    Author, Designer, Imaginative Being aibrean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Surge View Post
    The whole reason I contacted the creators was to avoid things like this. Honestly, it's kind of discouraging because if I find another font that works, I've got to do this all over again and who knows if that one'll be right either.

    Oh, well...
    I had nothing better to do today... I emailed the creator for clarification. What they told you is literally contradicting the license in the zip file on their own site! I would hate for you to spend all the time finding another font if it was a misunderstanding.

    BTW, they can't have two licenses. If they have OFL, it supersedes anything else they might address to it (see the fine print - The Font Software, modified or unmodified, in part or in whole,
    must be distributed entirely under this license, and must not be
    distributed under any other license.
    )

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  24. #24
    Fire-Breathing Space Monkey. XMissBrightSideX's Avatar
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    FontSpace. People upload the fonts they made there. Not all of them are commercial friendly, but the site has a filtering system so that when you're browsing, you can choose to only see fonts that are commercial friendly. Best thing, for me at least, is that most of the fonts include a note with the font creator's license/terms and contact information.

    The only negative I can think of is it can be a little difficult to find the option for the filter. You have to select a category first (under browse) for it to appear. Then it chills in tiny font by the page numbers. lol.
    You're all impregnated with Harry's alien babies.

  25. #25
    practical experience, FTW Flutterlight's Avatar
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    There's a great font called Open Dyslexic that's free as long as you attribute. It's not a particularly "attractive" font style, but it really cuts down on reading time.

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