Unofficial merchandise is a big business for small players that Disney mostly leaves alone

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

From the article:

In most cases, you won't find the gear in any official Disney store, where your mom may have bought you a Donald Duck tee and set of ears as a kid. Instead, click the tags and you'll land on some of the hundreds of small shops run by Disney devotees who have turned their fandom into full-time businesses, making T-shirts, buttons, pins, patches, jewelry, ears, and more inspired by all things Walt...

What's more surprising is that Disney isn't stepping in to curb the proliferation of shops playing fast and loose with its intellectual property — after all, many of those characters and logos are subject to copyright and trademark protection, areas that Disney has historically ruled with an iron fist.

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Jeff's avatar

And I'm thankful for this phenomenon, given all of the not-quite-Star Wars shirts I have. This one in particular gets huge high fives and responses from cast members and other parents. I think it's cool, because some of it is bona fide pop art, and it may not skirt the law as much as it flirts with fair use.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

Raven-Phile's avatar

There are a ton of them out there, like candles that smell like resort lobbies and the inside of pirates. Also shirts - things like one with a design that clearly screams “Spaceship Earth” and says “thank the Phoenicians” that I absolutely LOVE. I’m glad they are leaving them alone.

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