I am self-publishing a dog photography book. I have obtained permissions for all subjects in the book. One of the pictures I am using has the American Kennel Club (AKC) logo in it. I'm assuming I need to get AKC's permission to use an image with their logo. Is this correct? Also do I need to get their permission to use their organization name in the book, for example, "Here we have AKC Champion (dog name) performing at the AKC show locating in (city)." Since I'm just stating facts I'm assuming I don't need to get their permission to use their organization name in the book? Thanks.

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    This question can probably answer re: referencing companies/organizations by name. As for the picture of an official logo, that might be a different wrinkle (although, bear in mind, we can't really offer legal advice).
    – Standback
    Jul 2, 2018 at 10:20
  • @ChrisSunami - no, don't do that. It's like getting rid of those annoying "c in a circle" things... Jul 2, 2018 at 16:03
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    @ItWasLikeThatWhenIGotHere I read the question as saying that the logo is on something that incidentally was photographed in the background, not as denoting that the AKC owns this particular image. Assuming that's the case, blurring out the logo is a solution I've frequently seen used (particularly on television). Jul 2, 2018 at 18:43
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    @KenCopen Can you clarify --is the logo just incidentally in the picture (i.e. someone in the background is wearing an AKC t-shirt), or is this a picture that actually belongs to the AKC? Also, I don't know the legalities, but it might make a difference that this is an official AKC event. Jul 2, 2018 at 18:47
  • @ChrisSunami - Looks like we read it differently - I assumed the logo had been added to indicate ownership (watermark style) - though after re-reading it does say "in" not "on", so I see your point. Hopefully Ken can clarify. Jul 3, 2018 at 6:49

2 Answers 2


Since all aspects of your question seem to relate to the American Kennel Club (AKC) I would suggest that you would be well served by asking the AKC itself for permission or information about their attitudes to what you are proposing.

An easy-to-use AKC Contact Page is available on the internet.

I hope this enables you to find the information you seek.

Good luck with your book.


To reproduce photographs, you would need the permission of the copyright holder. This is likely to be held by the photographer or by the organisation who commissioned the shoot.

Since the picture you have in mind has an AKC logo on it, it's almost certain that they are the copyright holder - or that they would be able to tell you who was. Be careful here - if they are the copyright holder, publishing without their logo being clearly visible is likely to cause much more legal trouble than publishing with the logo.

[Edit : When I answered this, I'd assumed the logo had been specifically added by the club. If it was just something in the background of the picture, my initial concern in the paragraph above goes away.]

I'm with robertcday - contacting them sounds like the best solution. They will be able to advise whether they are the copyright holder, whether permission has been granted with or without the logo (get this in writing), and whether an additional comment - for example "Image copyright American Kennel Club" or a description involving their name and the event is required or excluded.

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