Yeah, for fonts, too. The ones that came with your computer are probably okay for personal use, but not commercial. According to what I've been told (by professionals in publishing), licenses for fonts used in book interiors aren't a big deal; e-book readers change the fonts at will, and printing companies are responsible to get the commercial licenses for the fonts they print.
The problem comes with covers. The fonts, being made part of the image (or part of, say, a sign in a store) are now being used for commercial purposes, so you need a license.
So far, I've been using freeware-for-commercial-use fonts that actually have documentation from the font creator, because I trust that more than just some comment on a website that something's free for commercial use. It only takes one person "misunderstanding" a font's license (that can be free for personal use but cost for commercial use) to start spreading misinformation about a font's licensure.
Am I likely to be sued? No. Do I want to have all documentation on-hand in case of worst-case scenario. Yes.
This is a link to the Adobe site that lists fonts that are okay for editing and also ones that are okay for only printing or previewing: http://www.adobe.com/type/browser/legal/embeddingeula.html
Wow... seriously wow.
A while back I worked for a city municipality and did a lot of graphics and content for some sections of their website and ads for city events. They had me download fonts as needed for this purpose. I had the marketing department assist me for the procedure, but never did they say anything about verifying licensing. These things passed by them for approval, and again, never once did anyone mention anything about licensing the fonts (neither those that came with the programs, were already stored in the system, or that I downloaded). I was told where they had accounts to purchase stock photos, and was given suggestions of places to search for fonts, but never cautioned about licensing.
Sure, they were a city municipality, but their intention was to make profit off the events that these things promoted. Based on my experience with them, I had assumed that so long as the font was standard or that you had paid to download it, you could use it as you pleased. I would never assume that the font on a cover was created by the cover artist.
Just... seriously, wow. It makes sense that the creator of a font make an income for that creation, but I just assumed it was done in the purchase of it or that the program that included it had handled that aspect of it, thus providing the program's users with something they could use within the common uses of that program. Obviously, it was wrong of me to assume, and I should have known better... but I am still flabbergasted that I hadn't made that connection.
This potential test-forray into self-publishing is starting to sound more and more expensive. lol.
That link you sent me to KathyCarmichael is very helpful. However, I'm unsure how it relates to a cover. If it's licensed to be embedded in a PDF, does that mean it's licensed to be used in a book? On a website? On a cover? And what about alterations to the font in Illustrator? It's a commonly known graphics technique to "outline" a font and make adjustments as needed or wanted to it. In all the tutorials I've viewed, read, or purchased, never once do they mention the licensing.
It's not that I don't believe you, but rather that I'm shocked this is the first time I've specifically heard it mentioned.
I think back on threads on this board where people ask for critiques of their covers and I've heard many people comment on the fonts, suggest different fonts, but never before did I see anyone mention that the author verify that they were licensed to use the font for such.
How do you confirm this? Where do you purchase such licensing?
Egads, I've got a lot more research to do.