May 14th, 2014

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Official Terms of Service Advice & Review Post

For an artist, be you a hobbyist or pro; it is positively critical to have a good, solid Terms of Service (T.O.S.). One that includes both your rights as the artist and the customer's rights in relation to your services. Not only does this educate your customers on how the process works and what to expect from it, but it protects both of you in case something goes wrong.

In our first official T.O.S. discussion post, we discussed what to include in a Terms of Service, what constituted good terms, and what were questionable, shady, or downright illegal terms.

Now, once again; here's your chance to post your T.O.S. for critique. Don't know how to word a particular point you're trying to convey? Want to make sure your T.O.S. is fair for you and your customers? Need to make sure you didn't leave any gigantic loopholes? Link your T.O.S. here, and members can give you their advice.

This post can also be used to discuss any other questions that you have on your mind regarding how to build a T.O.S., maintain a good T.O.S. and how to make sure your clients read and agree to your T.O.S.

Before you post, please read through the previous T.O.S. discussions; apply what you learn there to your T.O.S., and then link your revised T.O.S. here for help polishing up.

Please do not post a half-finished T.O.S. and ask folks to rewrite it for you. Be prepared for honest critique!
[Click here for quick-tips & T.O.S. suggestions/explanations]
A good 'break down' for a T.O.S.:
Intro
Artist's Rights
-Payment
-Process
-Preferences
-Publishing
Client's Rights
-Fixes/Redraws
-Publishing
-Behavior
Communication
Refunds
Shipping & Handling

-When it comes to an artist's preferences for what they will or will not draw; simple is often better. You -may- list what you are not willing to draw, but it can get lengthy. If you're not willing to list, or find your list getting longer than your own T.O.S.; but do not might getting ideas pitched at you to pick from, a good solid "Commission themes are to be approved at artist's discretion at all times. Artist reserves the right to decline any commission, without reason." will help you out.

-When talking payment, the community majority is in favor of using Paypal INVOICES. Invoices give the artist control over how much money they're getting, when they get it, and the content of the invoice (in case you're afraid of what a client may write in your place).

-Fixes/Redraws need to have a firm hard limit set to them, as well as some suggestions to go along with them. Detail WHAT part of the process a client may (or may not) ask for fixes on, how many they get and if they go over that limit; what you will charge additionally for it. Also suggest the client wait a minimum of 24-48 hours (if you can afford that wait) to really find out what they want fixed or what they can live with, to the satisfaction of you and themselves.

-Tell your clients in the T.O.S. what you will not tolerate from them from the get-go. If you do not appreciate sexual advances/role-play/commentary; state it in the T.O.S. that you don't play those games and such behavior will not be tolerated during the commission process.

-Communication: State to potential clients how often you'll be in contact with them, or your comfort level in them contacting you for status updates, or where to look for updates if you use a service like Trello or keep a queue maintained on your blog/art site/etc.

-Remind your clients of your rights as the artist, that you own the artwork created due to copyright law. You have full publication/printing rights, but will out of respect to them ask if you can print their commissions for other purposes. If you give re-posting rights to your clients; state here and now where they can or cannot post to, if they have to use a watermarked copy you provide, etc.
-PRIVACY: State your policies (and applicable fees) on privacy of commissions, if you require permissions of secondary characters involved in said private commissions and the possible longevity of how long a private commission may stay private.

-Include refunding options, when a client is a allowed to back out, deposit fees (if building tangible art), etc. Just don't say 'no refunds, what so ever'.


Remember; the tips in the above cut are only the tip of the iceberg for a T.O.S. they're there to get your brain going on what to do. The Mods or even long time comm members will be absolutely glad to offer their two-cents on any other questions or topics you have come to mind, on top of the critique.

If you feel your T.O.S. is quite solid (honed in the fires of discussion posts past) feel free to share it here so folks have an example to look at!
grumpy gryphon griffin griffon

(no subject)

I have this marked as adult because some of the stuff on her commission spreadsheet is for adult commissions.

WHO: Skink/Paint. She no longer goes by Paint, but her other two bewares are under that name. I think this beware should be added under that name for her, as well as Skink since it is what she now goes by.

WHERE: I commissioned her over FA on Paint, but she is active here- https://www.weasyl.com/~skink

WHAT: I commissioned her January 19th 2013 for $110 worth of pay what you want commissions, to be divided into two images. A few months later, I commissioned her again for $30 colored sketch. (exact date not known because I paid for it over some sort of funding website and can't seem to find it on my paypal although I remember paying and I am down on her commission spreadsheet for this commission. See the spreadsheet later).

WHEN: I made the first payment to her on January 19th 2013. She was fine in keeping contact with me whenever I sent her a note. The last reply I've heard from her in note form was on January 21st 2014. After that date she has not replied to any of my messages regarding the commissions. I wouldn't be so concerned, however she opened commissions March 29th and did finish a handful of these new commissions, posting them to Weasyl while I continued to receive no reply to my messages.
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