Okay, Monte...thanks for your patience. There are three different issues here:
1. Trademark. If (any or all of) the design/ogo or text is actually registered as a trademark for a business that uses the logo or text in commerce (i.e., to sell a product or service), then your use may be considered trademark infringement. The critical factor is whether or not an ordinary consumer would associate your work with the trademark owner's business. If yes, you're infringing. Otherwise, not.
2. Copyright. U.S. copyright law does not protect catchwords, catchphrases, mottoes, slogans, or short advertising expressions. So, the phrase used in the design cannot be protected by copyright (though, it may (or, may not -- depends on a lot of factors that only a court can resolve) be protected as a trademark). The design, however, can be copyright protected. In this case, if an ordinary person would view one design and immediately associate it with the other, than that's copyright infringement. Example:
If you draw a mouse with big eyes and a huge smile wearing lederhosen, then you're probably infringing on Disney's Mickey Mouse. But, if you draw a mouse with small eyes and a huge smile wearing a suit, then you're probably not infringing.
Which brings us to issue 3...
3. Who are the litigants. Trademark and Copyright litigation is very costly. Lawyers charge $400-600 per hour for this sort of work. So, if you're adversary is an individual with "shallow pockets," then the chance of being sue for infringement is low, even if you make a verbatim infringement. Secondarily, there's the issue of "Who are you?" A lawyer that might take a copyright or trademark infringement case on contingency (pay only if you win) -- is far more likely to take the case if there is a lot of infringement (massive sales), or you have deep pockets with which to pay a damage award. Whereas, if you or your adversary are "small potatoes," then no one will sue and no one will defend -- and if someone does sue, then the defendant may simply file bankruptcy and that will end the dispute in a hurry.
Note: Trademark infringement can be sued on in any court -- even in small claims court without a lawyer. Copyright infringement must be sued on only in U.S. District Court, which is the most expensive legal forum.
That's the "broad brush."
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