Social Thinking’s Intellectual Property
Social Thinking’s Intellectual Property: Trademark, Copyright & More
Social Thinking® is a flexible systems-based methodology created to help individuals with social emotional learning challenges improve their social competencies. We created it and continue to evolve it in response to your needs. Help us protect the fidelity of this body of work and be informed about how you can/can’t use our materials.
Understanding Some of the Main Dos and Don’ts of Using our Intellectual Property
Social Thinking Founder, Michelle Garcia Winner, talks about using our intellectual property (everything we create) to meet your students’ or clients’ needs. User-friendly conversation about what we know is a confusing topic!
IP Decision-Tree Guidelines
Here’s a handy decision-tree formatted document that helps you find answers to most of our IP questions. Covers basics such as: using the Social Thinking name (Superflex, We Thinkers, etc.), using or adapting our materials in your classroom or clinic, giving presentations or doing training on any part of the Social Thinking Methodology, posting Social Thinking materials you’ve created on YouTube, Facebook, or TeachersPayTeachers, translating materials into other languages, and more!
Last Updated: February 2017
Last updated: August 2017.
Frequently Asked Questions
Using the Social Thinking Name, Logo, and our Other Trademarks
1.1 What is a trademark and what does it mean?
The registered trademark ® is the small “R” in a circle symbol. When a trademark is in use but is not registered (or while a registration is in process), the small ™ symbol is used.
Trademark and copyright are completely different. Adding a copyright symbol to a name does not mean the name is trademarked. Using a logo does not indicate trademark either. A logo is simply a graphic representation of a company's name. It has nothing to do with a trademark (although a company can trademark its logo if they go through the process with the USPTO).
1.2 What trademarks belong to Social Thinking?
Social Thinking GPS™
Social Thinking-Social Communication Profile™
Note: The Zones of Regulation® trademark belongs to Leah Kuypers and terms and conditions listed in this section also apply to it.
1.3 Does your trademark apply to both “Social Thinking” and “social thinking”?
1.4 Can I use the Social Thinking name, logo, or trademarks in my business?
1.5 Can I use Social Thinking trademarks or the names of frameworks as part of the name of my program or service?
You can, however, mention in your program description that you use the Social Thinking Methodology or any of its teaching frameworks, such as Superflex, Social Behavior Mapping, ILAUGH, etc.
1.6 Can I use the Social Thinking name, trademarks, names of frameworks as part of the name of an article or book I’m writing?
1.7 Can I use Social Thinking, Superflex, We Thinkers or other names of Social Thinking works as part of the name of a curriculum, training program, or workshop I’ve created?
1.8 Can I create a new school/clinic/company that is primarily based on teaching Social Thinking (Superflex, We Thinkers, etc.) and use your name/trademark?
1.9 Can I say or advertise that our clinic or in-school program uses Social Thinking (Superflex, We Thinkers, etc.) as the primary teaching methodology upon which it is based?
1.10 Can I purchase a domain name (URL) that contains any of your trademarks in it?
1.11 Can I use Social Thinking as part of the name of a professional title or position I hold?
1.12 Can I use Social Thinking as part of the name of a professional title or position I hold?
1.13 Can I use the Social Thinking logo when I'm talking about or referring to Social Thinking?
Copyright: Using Social Thinking Concepts, Vocabulary and Materials
2.1 What is copyright and how does it apply to me?
- Reproduce the work in whole or part
- Distribute the work in whole or part
- Display the work in whole or part
- Perform the work in whole or part
- Create derivative works from the original work.
The copyright owner can also authorize or license others with any of these rights, via a written agreement. People who do anything with the copyrighted works of others without permission that falls in any of these five areas are in copyright infringement.
Copyright protects everything TSP creates and shares in print, content we share orally at our conferences, in webinars or eLearning modules, etc. TSP also holds copyright on The Zones of Regulation book, by Leah Kuypers. All information in this section and others apply to using The Zones of Regulation also.
2.2 I work in an educational setting so I don’t have to worry about copyright, right?
2.3 Can I copy and post Social Thinking materials, activities, lessons, characters, graphics, etc. on our school or clinic website?
2.4 Can I copy and share thinksheets/handouts/activity plans/parent letters, etc. from Social Thinking books with my students’ parents or caregivers?
2.5 Can I reproduce graphics or characters from your books and use them in my own lessons and teaching materials I create?
2.6 Can I make copies of conference handouts and give them to others?
2.7 Can our school buy one copy of a Social Thinking book and then make copies of lessons and materials for other teachers?
2.8 Can I make copies of the files on a Social Thinking book’s CD/USB and give them to others?
2.9 Can I use front cover images of Social Thinking books/products in my blog, article, or presentation?
2.10 Can I copy, enlarge and post images from Social Thinking materials in my classroom or clinic or in our school’s common areas?
2.11 Can I record and post video clips from Social Thinking conferences on Facebook, YouTube, on my website, etc.?
Creating Your Own New Works Based on Social Thinking Concepts, Characters, or Materials (Adaptations & Derivative Works)
3.1 What is a “derivative work”?
3.2 Can I adapt a Social Thinking, Superflex, Zones, etc. lesson, poster, curriculum unit and use it in my classroom or clinic?
3.3 Can I create my own product based on a part of the Social Thinking Methodology (or Zones of Regulation) and share it with the public?
If you are simply using one or two terms from the Social Thinking Vocabulary or making a short reference to Social Thinking (or Zones) and everything else in your work is originally yours, this is permitted providing proper attribution is given to authors and TSP. "Originally yours" means the idea itself you are presenting was not part of the original work. An adaptation of some existing idea in the work still brings copyright issues into play.
3.4 Can I write an article or book, or create a game, app, or other product, based on my adaptation of Social Thinking (or Zones) materials and have it published?
3.5 Can I create a school play about Superflex and the Unthinkables?
3.6 Can I create dolls, puppets, Halloween costumes, etc. based on characters created by Social Thinking?
Any other use of what you've created, to include sharing copies with others, posting pictures to Pinterest, making videos showing your works and posting them on YouTube (unless it's a private posting), or trying to give away or sell your works to the public is not permitted.
3.7 Can I create a new teaching curriculum that uses Social Thinking materials as part of it?
3.8 Our nonprofit/agency has created an after-school program built on Social Thinking/Superflex/Zones, etc. and we charge schools a fee to do this program at the school. Is this OK?
3.9 Can I create a new work based on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers, etc. and submit it to Social Thinking for publication?
3.10 Why are there all these restrictions on what I can do with your materials? I just want to help others!
Giving Presentations or Trainings on Any Part of Social Thinking
4.1 Can I give face-to-face presentations or trainings on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers, etc. to the general public?
Otherwise, no. Direct training to the public is not permitted. Only members of the Social Thinking Training and Speakers Collaborative are permitted to give training sessions to the general public on using or implementing the methodology. These people are licensed and approved to teach Social Thinking and are personally mentored by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke on an on-going basis so they can impart the most current thought on teaching the methodology with fidelity. These same conditions apply to doing presentations or trainings on The Zones of Regulation. Contact Leah Kuypers (www.zonesofregulation.com) about presentations, webinars, etc. she can provide.
4.2 Can I give face-to-face presentations on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers, etc. within my school, clinic, or company?
4.3 My school/organization expects me to implement Social Thinking, Superflex, We Thinkers, etc. school-wide as part of my employment with the school. Is that type of staff training OK?
4.4 Can I train others in my school, clinic or business on how to use Social Thinking concepts, materials, and frameworks with their students?
Note: this permission is not an approval or endorsement of the training and TSP is not responsible for the quality of the training being offered.
4.5 Can I create an audio, visual, or multimedia presentation or training on Social Thinking, Superflex, We Thinkers, Zones of Regulation, etc. and share it with other staff or the public?
4.6 Can I give a webinar or create an eLearning workshop on Social Thinking, Superflex, ILAUGH, etc.?
4.7 I’m a private educational consultant to schools and businesses in my area. Can I train their teachers/staff on Social Thinking?
4.8 We are a training and services company for people with ASD and other disabilities. Can we create and offer training programs on Social Thinking, Superflex, etc.?
4.9 We are a nonprofit and provide different fee-paid services to schools. Can we offer to train school staff on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers, etc.?
Please refer requests from schools to members of the Social Thinking Training and Speakers Collaborative, individuals who are licensed by TSP to provide these training services.
4.10 I’m a public school professional hired to train our in-house staff. Can I offer trainings outside my school or consult with local/state/national agencies on Social Thinking?
4.11 Our school is planning to implement Social Thinking/Superflex/Zones of Regulation, etc. school-wide/district-wide. That's OK, right?
Translating or Converting Social Thinking Materials into Other Formats
5.1 Can I translate Social Thinking materials to use them in my classroom or clinic?
5.2 Can I share materials I’ve translated outside my classroom or clinic (in print or digital form)?
5.3 Can I translate and print Social Thinking materials and sell them on your behalf in our country?
5.4 Can I convert print materials on Social Thinking into digital/audio formats and share them with others?
5.5 Can I convert Social Thinking print materials to digital to use them in a virtual teaching program?
5.6 Can I convert Social Thinking print materials or PDF files to whiteboard file formats and use them in my classroom?
5.7 Can I convert Social Thinking materials and/or books into braille to use them with my student who is blind?
5.8 Can I convert a We Thinkers storybook into a read aloud version to use with a student who is blind?
Attribution, Citations and References When Referring to Social Thinking
6.1 What is attribution?
6.2 When do I need to give attribution to authors or Social Thinking?
6.3 What does proper attribution need to include?
In a footnote or a bibliography or reference list, include the title of the work, author’s name, date of publication, publisher, and website URL if material was referenced online.
6.4 How do I give proper attribution in a video I plan to post on YouTube, Facebook, my website, etc.?
If the video does pass the “copyright test” proper attribution needs to be included in the beginning of the video (not the end) AND be included in the written description of the video on YouTube or another online site.
6.5 How do I reference a Social Thinking book or product?
6.6 What about attribution on webpages? Is it different?
Posting Social Thinking Materials, Adaptations or Derivatives to YouTube, TeachersPayTeachers, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.
7.1 What is copyright and how does it apply to me?
Copyright gives the owner 5 exclusive rights which include the right to:
- Reproduce the work in whole or part
- Distribute the work in whole or part
- Display the work in whole or part
- Perform the work in whole or part
- Create derivative works from the original work
If what you’re doing (creating a new lesson based on Social Thinking, writing/performing a song about Superflex, having your kids perform a skit about the Unthinkables, etc.) falls in any of these five areas, unless you have prior written permission from TSP to share your work with the public, you are in copyright infringement.
Our copyrights protect everything TSP creates and shares in print, content we share orally at our conferences, in webinars or eLearning modules, etc.
7.2 Can I post materials I’ve created on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers/Zones of Regulation, etc. and sell them on TeachersPayTeachers.com?
If you create a brand new approach that is based on Social Thinking, Superflex, Zones, etc., it’s still a derivative, since it’s based on Social Thinking! The same terms and conditions apply.
7.3 Can I post materials I’ve created based on Social Thinking/Superflex/We Thinkers/Zones of Regulation, etc. and post them free on YouTube, Pinterest, Facebook, etc.?
7.4 Can I do a “read aloud” video of a Social Thinking storybook and post it on YouTube or online?
7.5 Can I create my own original songs about Superflex, the Unthinkables or Thinkables, or any other concepts or character(s) owned by Social Thinking and post it to YouTube or anywhere else online?
7.6 Can I post online or on YouTube video skits of my students demonstrating/using Social Thinking concepts or materials?
7.7 Can I make videos showing adults as Superflex, Unthinkables or Thinkables and post online or on YouTube?
7.8 Why can’t I post things I’ve created – I’m only trying to share ideas with others!
Remember: what you’ve created is a derivative work and in and of itself, if you’re sharing that with the public, that’s copyright infringement. Beyond that, it’s simply impossible for us to review or evaluate everything that other people are doing with our work to check for accuracy and teaching fidelity. Because so many people are now posting their own creations on the Internet, and honestly, so much of what we see is not teaching our work correctly, we’ve had to draw a line in the sand and have all these derivative materials removed.
7.9 Is there any way I can share the Social Thinking works I’ve created with others?
- If you've created a cool way of using our materials, consider presenting it at our Annual Global Social Thinking Providers Conference, held each June in the San Francisco Bay area. This is a terrific opportunity to present your work to your peers, and to us at Social Thinking.
- If your ideas are in a book, booklet, game, or other composed "product" format, submit it to us for publication! Email us for our Submission Guidelines to get started.
Using Materials from The Zones of Regulation, Whole Body Listening, or Other Books We Publish
8.1 Do all of the FAQs and the terms and conditions apply to other books published by TSP?
8.2 Can I create my own materials, songs, etc. based on Zones of Regulation and post them to YouTube or TeachersPayTeachers.com?
(See Questions in Section 7 above.)
8.3 Can I read the Whole Body Listening Larry at School (or at Home) book on YouTube?
(See Question 7.4 above.)
8.4 Can I make a video of my kids using Whole Body Listening and post it on YouTube or Facebook?
(See Question 7.6 above.)
8.5 Do I need permission to use Zones graphics in my own lessons or worksheets?
(See Questions in Sections 1, 2, 3 and 7 above.)
Obtaining Permission & Licenses
9.1 What happens if I’ve done something I shouldn’t or violated your trademarks or copyrights unintentionally?
If we find the source of the trademark or copyright infringement to be on your website or through a direct service you offer, we’ll send a friendly email to let you know you’re doing something you shouldn’t and tell you how to correct it. We’re reasonable and understand that most people are acting in good faith. We’ll give you a few weeks to correct that situation (if possible) or remove the work. We do check to make sure you take the correct action!
9.2 Can you help me fix my work so I can put it back up on YouTube or TeachersPayTeachers?
If the infringement is minor, of course we will explain how to fix things so you can still use the work you’ve created.
9.3 How do I get a license to translate materials for use with my own students?
9.4 Who do I contact with questions about using Social Thinking materials and/or permissions?
Otherwise, send and email to email@example.com with “IP Question” in the subject line. We prefer to receive your questions in writing to document your request and our response, rather than discussing these matters with you via telephone.
If you have read all of the Intellectual Property information above, and have done your due diligence, but still have questions about using Social Thinking's IP, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or call us Monday - Friday 8 AM - 4:30 PM PST at (408) 557-8595.