Wednesday, September 28, 2011

When to give credit


This issue has been on my mind lately, and I thought I would bring it up in my little corner because it's probably something we all should think about.  

I get a lot of my photos or ideas on the Internet and it's just good manners to give credit to the original author.  If it's someone else's picture I use in a post, you will see a link at the bottom of the picture noting the source. If I got an idea from someone whether in person or online, I try to let that person be referenced.  However, there is so much transferred throughout the web that it can also be very hard to note the actual source (thank you pinterest for doing it so easily). Still, I try...even if it's just the last source and still needs traced back some. And if it is an idea that I got by reading someones blog, I note that's where I got the inspiration and proceed along my way. It's just nice manners to give credit where credit is due, you know?

But in another situation I also remember my friend saying something to me years ago regarding putting my name on a recipe.  I had been using a recipe I got online but added my own spin on it, but still I did not feel like I could say it was my recipe.  She told me otherwise, saying that I had changed it (even if it was simply changing the temp and time) and so therefore I could own it. It made sense then so I agreed and have since called the recipe my own when I pass it around to friends.

So what about a party idea or a theme? I get so much inspiration online that I don't usually note where the source was when I execute it if I post it online.  For instance, the long table idea for my sister's wedding...I saw that idea on lots of websites. Since it was my own execution of that idea I can own it and there really is no credit to give...and how would I give it anyway?  But what about a party theme?  I have been overwhelmed with the attention some of my parties have received. It is flattering to see those ideas re-produced by various people as well.  But I have also come across some sites where something has been introduced as their own and I'm not sure how to take it.  Without reading too much into it, the result should be flattery, and yet it seems strange and I want to say "hey! That was my idea! Shouldn't you say something?"  

But isn't it just natural to want to claim something as your own?  I have had plenty of moments when I have been asked "did you come up with that idea?" and my gut reaction is to say "yes!" because well, it just makes me feel creative...but then my moral code has to say "no." 

So, what is right and what is wrong and are there exceptions or alternative situations where giving credit does not apply? Like in the creative world when it's not someones actual photo or words? And does it even matter?

It's certainly something that makes me think today...

**head on over to this great site for some food for thought... 


Susan Anderson said...

I don't know the answer to any of this either, but I figure it's always good to err on the side of giving credit.

I don't post credit, however, for pictures that I cannot directly link to the person who took them. I've had people give credit to me for public domain photos I've used, and it always seems a bit silly and somewhat embarrassing.


Stef said...

I always say, "I got this idea on line and added a few of my own.." But I also am guilty of simply finding a picture online and loading...although most of them have links attached through the photo.
Good question

Bridget said...

Chiming in from a different angle...

In our driving school, we have a registration form with rules about how the course works. Because I think about things like paper/printing, I don't want the form to be longer than one page. As a result, I've spent some major time wording things just right so that they are clear and concise and fit on the page.

Fast forward. I look at registration forms from other driving schools. Sometimes I find phrases in them that are identical to my own forms. Ones I spent a lot of time getting just right. I love it when this happens. My wording was so good that it set the standard for other schools. When consumers call around to compare schools/programs, they find that the rules in most of them are the same. From a business standpoint, that makes my life easier.

What you should do is to set the standard on party themes. Put together printables for a Got Milk baby shower and sell them for $4.99 on your blog. It'd be cheap enough that people would actually buy it instead of making their own. And you could make money off your idea without ever having to make/send anything.

Kaci Uipi said...

I think credit needs to be given whenever you can, I am guilty of not giving enough credit because sometimes I put a thousand pics and it would take me forever to give credit and you get the point,but I definetly in that situation don't say or try to make it sound like it is MY work. I think that's the most important is if you aren't going to give credit for things, obviously don't try to make it seem like its your stuff... and you should KNOW and FEEL when that credit needs to be given. For example--if all you changed was the temp and time that you cook something, but all of the ingredients and main idea of the dish are the same, then that doesn't sound like it's "your" recipe. HOWEVER-- I want to bring up a REALLY good point that I've been thinking about a lot lately... There's isn't that much "actual creative/original work" out there (in the world) anymore. Here is one of my HONEST examples: Not long ago I was planning a party and really thinking about how I can display the food, add height, maintain a low budget, have it look cute and match the decor, etc. and so I thought of this "GREAT IDEA" to glue candle holders and vases onto chargers or other large circular, flat shapes, and then paint and/or add embellishments to match my decor.. so basically I would be making my OWN pedestals and food stands. SOOo I thought I had this marvelous idea.. then the next day or so I get online, and see on pinterest that someone had ALREADY done it.. I was a little shocked thinking, "WAIT! How could we BOTH be thinking of the SAME idea at the same time!!? Especially cause I had NEVER seen that before or heard of it!" well--anyway, just goes to show that NOW DAYS with SOOO much CREATIVITY floating around (ESPECIALLY now days because EVERYONE has caught the CRAZY CRAFT BUG) there's just less and less "original ideas". Obviously there are still some, but less and less as time goes on.

Montserrat said...

And then there's the copyright issue. The rules were actually updated to keep up with the internet and social media, to say if you do not have permission to post someone's photo, even if you give them credit, you are violating copyright laws. Which makes me wonder how Pinterest (which I love and use daily!) gets away with it!

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