legality of converting a font to outlines

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Jul 25, 2016 Jul 25, 2016

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Hi,

I am currently working with a client on a design that involves some text. I am using Adobe CC 2016. I am new to professional design and want to avoid violating any EULA's. The printer that my client is working with is asking for an Ai file of my design so my questions are as follows:

1. Am I legally allowed to convert the text to outlines so that the printer will not have access to the source file of the font?

2. Am I still bound to the font's EULA once the font has been hypothetically converted to outlines?

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Jul 25, 2016 Jul 25, 2016

The simple answers:

(1)     Your right to convert text rendered via fonts to filled (and/or stroked) polygons is dependent upon the EULA (End User License Agreement) of the individual font itself. Thus, you must read the EULA for each and every font that you wish to apply this outlining hackery.

Note that in my experience, fonts that don't allow embedding for “preview and print” also don't allow “outlining” or even rasterization as a means of getting around the restrictions against embedding in a

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Jul 25, 2016 Jul 25, 2016

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The simple answers:

(1)     Your right to convert text rendered via fonts to filled (and/or stroked) polygons is dependent upon the EULA (End User License Agreement) of the individual font itself. Thus, you must read the EULA for each and every font that you wish to apply this outlining hackery.

Note that in my experience, fonts that don't allow embedding for “preview and print” also don't allow “outlining” or even rasterization as a means of getting around the restrictions against embedding in a PDF (or even an EPS) file. Thus, you really should carefully shop for fonts based not only design, but also reasonable embedding rights. More specifically, any font that doesn't come with “preview and print” embedding rights for PDF is effectively useless!!! Also be wary of any EULAS that permit “preview and print” embedding, but require you to pay a royalty based on the number of PDF files distributed or pages printed from same!

(2)     Generally speaking, yes, you are still bound to the font's EULA once a font has been converted either to outlines and/or rasterized.

          - Dov

- Dov Isaacs, former Adobe Principal Scientist (April 30, 1990 - May 30, 2021)

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