Is a longstanding Spanish crest guilty of copyright infringement?

Accidental copyright infringement can happen when companies don't do the proper research before creating new logos for themselves. It's likely that La Liga Club Valencia, a Spanish soccer collective, didn't intend to steal from the famous "batsignal" when it designed its most recent logo.

However, DC Comics, owners of the Batman character and related imagery, is seeking legal action because they say the Valencia logo, a bat in flight with raised wings, is too close to the symbol of one of its most famous characters.

According to the Washington Post, DC claims the Valencia image falls within the range of related bat-themed designs that it has copyright over. An example provided by the blog, taken from a recent tweet, compares the two images, with the official Batman symbol employing straight-edged wings while the other resembles a "V."

The club is countering these accusations by claiming that it derives from a far older design with ties to classic heraldry designs. The local team is actually known as "the bats" and Valencia features a special sign with the bat design perched on top of a colorful shield image. A piece in the Sydney Morning Herald traces the image specifically to the coat of arms of King James I in the 13th century.

Connections like this could be unknown to designers in the start, or perhaps not considered as possibly causing an issue. This is why professional sign companies should handle the task of putting a company's brand image on vinyl signs and related promotional signpieces, because this has the potential to establish a concrete brand identity that sets your business apart from others.