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Old 03-10-2009, 12:24 PM   #1  
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Default Is this legal?

Just been on e-bay looking at stamps and came across sellers selling stamped images of stamps. Is this legal? The main ones being sold were Magnolias, there were a few Sugar Nellie's there too.
Just interested before I buy..... or not!
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:28 PM   #2  
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NO, there are copyright issues....if you would like images your are probably best to swap image with someone.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:38 PM   #3  
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There always seem to be loads of people on eBay UK selling stamped images, Catherine. I'd agree that there are copyright issues but there are also just plain ethical/good manners ones too. Selling stamped images deprives companies of sales of stamps - I'd consider it unethical to undermine sales in that way. I know that not everybody can afford to buy all the stamps they'd like to have but we all have to make choices about how we spend our cash, I guess.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:39 PM   #4  
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If this is the case how are they getting away with it?

I just looked at the back of a Magnolia stamp and this is how it reads... 'Magnolia are an Angel company. We allow our images to be used on items for resale as long as everything is hand stamped and coloured. Please do not reproduce any of our images electronically or mechanically, by means of computers or copy machines.'
This does kind of suggest it is ok!
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:42 PM   #5  
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Joanne, I agree with you! I have just spent 20 on stamps and it does seem slightly wrong that I could have bought them already done for me for a fraction of the price. It is unfair on those companies!
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:42 PM   #6  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by crafty redView Post
If this is the case how are they getting away with it?

I just looked at the back of a Magnolia stamp and this is how it reads... 'Magnolia are an Angel company. We allow our images to be used on items for resale as long as everything is hand stamped and coloured. Please do not reproduce any of our images electronically or mechanically, by means of computers or copy machines.'
This does kind of suggest it is ok!
My reading of that is that they are saying you can sell cards or whatever. I am sure they are aware that straight selling of images happens, but I don't think it's in the spirit of what they are saying.
Personally, although I am happy to swap images, I wouldn't buy them. And while I might photocopy a swapped one to practice colouring, I wouldn't use it. I think it's good to respect copyright.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:43 PM   #7  
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An angel policy is intended to cover the use of the image on things like cards etc for resale, not sale of the image itself as I understand it. It's one thing to buy a stamp and use it to make cards to sell at your school fund raiser or craft fair - it's another thing to buy the stamp and profit from selling the image on to other people (who are then unlikely to buy the stamp as a result).

In terms of how people get away with it - I guess it's just that it's like any copyright issue, it's very hard to police.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:46 PM   #8  
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Legal or not, that's shady. Yuck.
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:18 PM   #9  
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I agree, legal or not, it's tacky. trading a few images with a friend is one thing, selling stamped images is directly circumventing the sales of that company. ICK
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:23 PM   #10  
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I also saw some stamped images the other day on ebay. I thought it was a no..no?!
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Old 03-10-2009, 02:33 PM   #11  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by AngelnorthView Post
An angel policy is intended to cover the use of the image on things like cards etc for resale, not sale of the image itself as I understand it.

Exactly--finished craft items that incorporate the hand-stamped use of the image.

Quote:

It's one thing to buy a stamp and use it to make cards to sell at your school fund raiser or craft fair - it's another thing to buy the stamp and profit from selling the image on to other people (who are then unlikely to buy the stamp as a result).
Precisely.

Quote:

In terms of how people get away with it - I guess it's just that it's like any copyright issue, it's very hard to police.
Sadly, I can only agree; it's hard enough for any artist to make a living . . . I can only imagine how tremendously frustrating this issue must be . . .
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:08 PM   #12  
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I say shame on those who buy them also! I can't imagine how frustrating it must be for those who design, mfg and sell these stamps for what is probably a small, hard earned profit nowadays. It is those who buy from pirates that encourage this type of behavior! After all if you don't buy, they can't sell!
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:17 PM   #13  
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A few weeks ago, I thought I was buying a stamp, but I actually got Black embossed stamped images of Penny Black "Bunny Trio".
I didn't know that this was a "no-no" or I wouldn't have got them. (I think I bid on it before I really read the description) Now I know not to ever do this again
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:25 PM   #14  
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Originally Posted by LuciesflooziesView Post
A few weeks ago, I thought I was buying a stamp, but I actually got Black embossed stamped images of Penny Black "Bunny Trio".
I didn't know that this was a "no-no" or I wouldn't have got them. (I think I bid on it before I really read the description) Now I know not to ever do this again
Sorry to hear that.....what a let-down that must have been to realize you were buying an image rather than a stamp.
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Old 03-10-2009, 04:14 PM   #15  
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I don't remember which company it was, but I read the angel policy of one recently that you could only sell the images if they were part of a project, not the image itself. I would imagine big companies like the ones mentioned in the OP would fall into that category. Maybe those listing the images for sale don't know the policies or maybe they do and figure they won't be caught. Ebay wouldn't monitor this kind of thing so unless someone contacts the companies and lets them know what's going on, I'm sure they will continue to get away with it.
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Old 03-10-2009, 04:33 PM   #16  
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While I think that it is unethical and tacky to sell stamped images, and I would neither buy nor sell these, I also think that the wording of the angel policies needs to be more precise. Technically, unless the person is mechanically reproducing the images, she/he would be breaking the law only if the policy stated that the images had to be part of a project. As I always say, though, just because you CAN do something doesn't mean that you SHOULD.
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Old 03-11-2009, 02:24 AM   #17  
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Originally Posted by peebsmamaView Post
I would imagine big companies like the ones mentioned in the OP would fall into that category.
I don't know about Magnolia but Sugar Nellie is not a "big company" - it's a self-proclaimed small outfit. Their blog has this info on their angel policy:

Quote:

Sugar Nellie welcomes artists who would like to use our stamp images in their own hand-stamped craftwork that they produce to sell. Therefore, we give permission in the form of a limited license to use any Sugar Nellie stamp images for the purpose of creating craftworks for sale under the following criteria:
Each craftwork created for sale must be personally and individually hand-stamped by the selling artist and may not be reproduced or copied in any form by any means, graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying. Mass production, assembly-line construction, production by workers for hire, or syndication of hand-stamped craftwork for sale is strictly prohibited. This includes selling stamped sheets.
The highlighting is mine, not theirs but they're stating very clearly that selling stamped images is prohibited.
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Old 03-11-2009, 02:52 AM   #18  
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Sugar Nellie just had a post on their blog about this issue. Read it here.
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Old 03-11-2009, 02:59 AM   #19  
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That is tacky. But it doesn't surprise me.
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Old 03-11-2009, 03:07 AM   #20  
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Originally Posted by KatarinaMView Post
Sugar Nellie just had a post on their blog about this issue. Read it here.
Interesting, thanks for the link Katarina! I see they mention having talked to Penny Black about the issue - it's actually PB images I see most often being sold on eBay. In fact, at the moment on eBay (UK) I can't see any Sugar Nellies but there are reams of PB images for sale, a lot of them using a picture of the actual stamp in the listing, not a pic of the images you'd actually be buying so I'm not surprised some people get caught out and think they're snagging the stamp at a bargain price.
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Old 03-11-2009, 04:11 AM   #21  
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I just looked and there is 1 USA seller selling several Magnolia images. I found several Penny Black ones also. How very sad. Some people will do anything for a buck.
I hope the companies contact them and have those auctions removed.
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Old 03-11-2009, 04:25 AM   #22  
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Can I ask a question? How is selling them any different than swapping them? In both instances you are circumventing the sales of images by the original artist.

IMO swapping them is just as unethical as selling them because you are depriving the original artist of their commission on their artwork, and you are gaining something without purchasing it. The only difference IMO is that the stamped image you are paying for them with isn't official currency.

JMO, I'm sure it isn't going to be popular.
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Old 03-11-2009, 04:56 AM   #23  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by StampHunter68View Post
Can I ask a question? How is selling them any different than swapping them? In both instances you are circumventing the sales of images by the original artist.

IMO swapping them is just as unethical as selling them because you are depriving the original artist of their commission on their artwork, and you are gaining something without purchasing it. The only difference IMO is that the stamped image you are paying for them with isn't official currency.

JMO, I'm sure it isn't going to be popular.
I actually tend to agree and will not personally swap images anymore.

Somehow in the little culture stampers have built it has become acceptable to trade small numbers of stamped images. I'm not sure exactly why it's accepted. Perhaps because it increases the love of those companies?

I would love for some of our stamp company members to chime in on this. I bet the majority of people swapping images would not want to do it if they felt it was an offence to the companies.

I get the impression, here on SCS at least, that most people love the stamp companies and would not want to hurt these small businesses.


Also I gotta have the actual stamp so I can do layering and stamp on what paper I choose and such. And the thrill of inking rubber and pressing your own image, oh it's delightful.
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:37 AM   #24  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Erin KView Post
I would love for some of our stamp company members to chime in on this.
Okay, I'll bite. I agree with all those who say that either selling stamped images or trading stamped images interferes with a company's ability to profit from their own original ideas and creations. I think it is absolutely WRONG for people to sell stamped images. I have no problem with someone using our stamps to make cards or altered objects to sell. (I know some companies do not agree with this idea, so I'm speaking only for my company's policy.) That's different, because the person who assembles the card is using some of their OWN creative process for a different end result than what my stamp alone provides. But if you just stamp off images and sell them, you're not creating anything new -- you'd only be profiting from MY creation.

I'm also opposed in many respects to the trading of images. Now before people jump on me, let me explain: If the trading is circumventing a sale, then I believe it's wrong. There are some people who trade "RAK" images. To me, if an image is randomly traded -- which means that you receive a surprise image in the mail to use -- then it's a fun thing. But when you specifically say "I need the Hambo 'elephant' stamped off" (as an example) and someone stamps that for you, it's NOT random. If the person NEEDS that image, then the stamp should be purchased. If the original purchaser then stamps all the needed images for all of their friends, then the artist of that design has been left out of the equation and cannot profit from his or her own creation. If the artists want their work passed around freely, I think they'd offer their designs on free clip-art pages. If it's found on a website with a price next to it, then clearly the artist is not GIVING it away.

I think the "Golden Rule" applies to so many things in life, including this situation. If stamp-making were YOUR business, how would you feel about people using your designs without paying for them? If you work in a corporate environment, would you want a colleague getting a pay raise because they merely presented a report for which YOU'D done all the work? If you were a fashion designer, would you want someone else to sell the patterns that you'd created? I could give many more examples, but I think you see what I'm saying. Treat others as you'd like to be treated yourself. (Unless you're a masochist! LOL)
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:51 AM   #25  
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Thanks for chiming in Monica! That makes perfect sense to me.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:10 AM   #26  
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Originally Posted by HamboView Post
To me, if an image is randomly traded -- which means that you receive a surprise image in the mail to use -- then it's a fun thing. But when you specifically say "I need the Hambo 'elephant' stamped off" (as an example) and someone stamps that for you, it's NOT random. If the person NEEDS that image, then the stamp should be purchased.
I think that's a really useful distinction Monica, thanks! I've only ever participated in one swap and it was a totally random bundle where we all agreed to stamp a certain number of images in total, the hostess mixed them all up and sent them out again. It was fun to get different images but I have to confess to having used exactly one of them so far. Like Erin, I want the rubber in my hand so I can decide what ink colour, what paper, whether I want to play with soot stamping or a resist technique, stamp a partial image. emboss it, press it into polymer clay etc etc - I can't do any of those things with a pre-stamped image.

I guess if I got an image I absolutely loved in a surprise bundle like that, I'd quite likely go out and buy the stamp so I could have all those stamp-in-the-hand possibilities for it.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:25 AM   #27  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by HamboView Post
Okay, I'll bite. I agree with all those who say that either selling stamped images or trading stamped images interferes with a company's ability to profit from their own original ideas and creations. I think it is absolutely WRONG for people to sell stamped images. I have no problem with someone using our stamps to make cards or altered objects to sell. (I know some companies do not agree with this idea, so I'm speaking only for my company's policy.) That's different, because the person who assembles the card is using some of their OWN creative process for a different end result than what my stamp alone provides. But if you just stamp off images and sell them, you're not creating anything new -- you'd only be profiting from MY creation.

I'm also opposed in many respects to the trading of images. Now before people jump on me, let me explain: If the trading is circumventing a sale, then I believe it's wrong. There are some people who trade "RAK" images. To me, if an image is randomly traded -- which means that you receive a surprise image in the mail to use -- then it's a fun thing. But when you specifically say "I need the Hambo 'elephant' stamped off" (as an example) and someone stamps that for you, it's NOT random. If the person NEEDS that image, then the stamp should be purchased. If the original purchaser then stamps all the needed images for all of their friends, then the artist of that design has been left out of the equation and cannot profit from his or her own creation. If the artists want their work passed around freely, I think they'd offer their designs on free clip-art pages. If it's found on a website with a price next to it, then clearly the artist is not GIVING it away.

I think the "Golden Rule" applies to so many things in life, including this situation. If stamp-making were YOUR business, how would you feel about people using your designs without paying for them? If you work in a corporate environment, would you want a colleague getting a pay raise because they merely presented a report for which YOU'D done all the work? If you were a fashion designer, would you want someone else to sell the patterns that you'd created? I could give many more examples, but I think you see what I'm saying. Treat others as you'd like to be treated yourself. (Unless you're a masochist! LOL)
Thank you for explaining so well!!! I have never done RandomAK swap but always wanted too and now I will do and make sure it's the right way. Again, thank you so much for clarifying.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:51 AM   #28  
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Originally Posted by StampHunter68View Post
Can I ask a question? How is selling them any different than swapping them? In both instances you are circumventing the sales of images by the original artist.

IMO swapping them is just as unethical as selling them because you are depriving the original artist of their commission on their artwork, and you are gaining something without purchasing it. The only difference IMO is that the stamped image you are paying for them with isn't official currency.

JMO, I'm sure it isn't going to be popular.

What is popular isn't always right, and what is right isn't always popular.

I do not wish to deprive the artist or stamp company of the commission they rightly deserve on their artwork and hard work, so I personally will not/do not swap images.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:51 AM   #29  
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Okay, I'll bite. I agree with all those who say that either selling stamped images or trading stamped images interferes with a company's ability to profit from their own original ideas and creations. I think it is absolutely WRONG for people to sell stamped images. I have no problem with someone using our stamps to make cards or altered objects to sell. (I know some companies do not agree with this idea, so I'm speaking only for my company's policy.) That's different, because the person who assembles the card is using some of their OWN creative process for a different end result than what my stamp alone provides. But if you just stamp off images and sell them, you're not creating anything new -- you'd only be profiting from MY creation.

I'm also opposed in many respects to the trading of images. Now before people jump on me, let me explain: If the trading is circumventing a sale, then I believe it's wrong. There are some people who trade "RAK" images. To me, if an image is randomly traded -- which means that you receive a surprise image in the mail to use -- then it's a fun thing. But when you specifically say "I need the Hambo 'elephant' stamped off" (as an example) and someone stamps that for you, it's NOT random. If the person NEEDS that image, then the stamp should be purchased. If the original purchaser then stamps all the needed images for all of their friends, then the artist of that design has been left out of the equation and cannot profit from his or her own creation. If the artists want their work passed around freely, I think they'd offer their designs on free clip-art pages. If it's found on a website with a price next to it, then clearly the artist is not GIVING it away.

I think the "Golden Rule" applies to so many things in life, including this situation. If stamp-making were YOUR business, how would you feel about people using your designs without paying for them? If you work in a corporate environment, would you want a colleague getting a pay raise because they merely presented a report for which YOU'D done all the work? If you were a fashion designer, would you want someone else to sell the patterns that you'd created? I could give many more examples, but I think you see what I'm saying. Treat others as you'd like to be treated yourself. (Unless you're a masochist! LOL)

You make a good point! On the other hand, many times you would not be able to buy every single image you ever wanted, and the company would not be getting that business anyway...but I can see where, if that is the case, you should just do without it then. Similar to music...
You are at least getting publicity, though, if the person correctly acknowledges the company. Again, similar to music being played on the radio. What if we all had to buy every song we ever listened to? Isn't that kind of the same? Yes, if you want to be able to play it whenever you want to, you have to buy it, and should not copy it from someone else. On the other hand, should we not even be able to listen to someone else's copy?

It's a fine line...I totally agree that the images should not be sold, but I'm not quite as convinced about sharing a few in a swap.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:56 AM   #30  
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Originally Posted by HamboView Post
Okay, I'll bite. I agree with all those who say that either selling stamped images or trading stamped images interferes with a company's ability to profit from their own original ideas and creations. I think it is absolutely WRONG for people to sell stamped images. I have no problem with someone using our stamps to make cards or altered objects to sell. (I know some companies do not agree with this idea, so I'm speaking only for my company's policy.) That's different, because the person who assembles the card is using some of their OWN creative process for a different end result than what my stamp alone provides. But if you just stamp off images and sell them, you're not creating anything new -- you'd only be profiting from MY creation.

I'm also opposed in many respects to the trading of images. Now before people jump on me, let me explain: If the trading is circumventing a sale, then I believe it's wrong. There are some people who trade "RAK" images. To me, if an image is randomly traded -- which means that you receive a surprise image in the mail to use -- then it's a fun thing. But when you specifically say "I need the Hambo 'elephant' stamped off" (as an example) and someone stamps that for you, it's NOT random. If the person NEEDS that image, then the stamp should be purchased. If the original purchaser then stamps all the needed images for all of their friends, then the artist of that design has been left out of the equation and cannot profit from his or her own creation. If the artists want their work passed around freely, I think they'd offer their designs on free clip-art pages. If it's found on a website with a price next to it, then clearly the artist is not GIVING it away.

I think the "Golden Rule" applies to so many things in life, including this situation. If stamp-making were YOUR business, how would you feel about people using your designs without paying for them? If you work in a corporate environment, would you want a colleague getting a pay raise because they merely presented a report for which YOU'D done all the work? If you were a fashion designer, would you want someone else to sell the patterns that you'd created? I could give many more examples, but I think you see what I'm saying. Treat others as you'd like to be treated yourself. (Unless you're a masochist! LOL)
Thanks for presenting this perspective, Monica. I could not have said it any better.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:13 AM   #31  
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Originally Posted by nottoocreativeView Post
You make a good point! On the other hand, many times you would not be able to buy every single image you ever wanted, and the company would not be getting that business anyway...but I can see where, if that is the case, you should just do without it then. Similar to music...
You are at least getting publicity, though, if the person correctly acknowledges the company. Again, similar to music being played on the radio. What if we all had to buy every song we ever listened to? Isn't that kind of the same? Yes, if you want to be able to play it whenever you want to, you have to buy it, and should not copy it from someone else. On the other hand, should we not even be able to listen to someone else's copy?

It's a fine line...I totally agree that the images should not be sold, but I'm not quite as convinced about sharing a few in a swap.

I definelty agree with you. Good point.

Also some people may not want to spend the money on a set that they will never use, so maybe they just want to see if they would like it.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:28 AM   #32  
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Thanks for presenting this perspective, Monica. I could not have said it any better.
LOL Julie! I was trying to channel you as I wrote it. I stopped to think "Now how would Julie say this?" because I'm not nearly as eloquent!
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:28 AM   #33  
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Originally Posted by nottoocreativeView Post
You make a good point! On the other hand, many times you would not be able to buy every single image you ever wanted, and the company would not be getting that business anyway...but I can see where, if that is the case, you should just do without it then. Similar to music...
You are at least getting publicity, though, if the person correctly acknowledges the company.
That may or may not happen, and I'd venture to say that it usually does not.

Quote:

Again, similar to music being played on the radio. What if we all had to buy every song we ever listened to? Isn't that kind of the same?
Actually, this is a vastly different comparison, and you yourself make the difference clear below :


Quote:

Yes, if you want to be able to play it whenever you want to, you have to buy it, and should not copy it from someone else. On the other hand, should we not even be able to listen to someone else's copy?
The difference lies in "use". Listening and using are 2 different things. Just like seeing and using.

I can see a painting in an art gallery, just like I listen to a song on the radio; in either event, if I want to USE that painting (hang it on the wall in my house) or USE that song (listen to it as many times as I want, whenever I want), I must buy it, to do so.

I bought a CD of music I love, and my parents heard it at my house and fell in love with it. Do I burn a copy of the CD I bought and give that copy to my parents or do I buy another CD and give it to my parents?

The only right and legal thing to do
, is to BUY another CD and give it to them. Which I did. To do otherwise violates the artist's copyrights, and circumvents their ability to earn fair profit for their work.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:32 AM   #34  
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That may or may not happen, and I'd venture to say that it usually does not.



Actually, this is a vastly different comparison, and you yourself make the difference clear below :




The difference lies in "use". Listening and using are 2 different things. Just like seeing and using.

I can see a painting in an art gallery, just like I listen to a song on the radio; in either event, if I want to USE that painting (hang it on the wall in my house) or USE that song (listen to it as many times as I want, whenever I want), I must buy it, to do so.

I bought a CD of music I love, and my parents heard it at my house and fell in love with it. Do I burn a copy of the CD I bought and give that copy to my parents or do I buy another CD and give it to my parents?

The only right and legal thing to do
, is to BUY another CD and give it to them. Which I did. To do otherwise violates the artist's copyrights, and circumvents their ability to earn fair profit for their work.
I still think swapping a few images is NOT the same has hanging the artwork in your home. If you were constantly getting the same image every time you wanted it, that would be different. Do you ever borrow someone else's set to make a card with? That would be the same as swapping a couple images. I can borrow someone's CD no problem--again, the difference is a time limit vs permanent unlimited use. Like I said, you should NOT copy a CD for someone, but it's not a problem to borrow it for a time or listen to it (get SOME use out of it) without buying it.
Again, fine line.
I definitely think the company should be acknowledged though.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:52 AM   #35  
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I believe that if I purchase a stamp, I can give stamped images to anyone I want. As I said before, I don't think it's ethical to sell them. But if I want to give them or swap them, I don't think that's wrong.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:54 AM   #36  
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Originally Posted by nottoocreativeView Post
You make a good point! On the other hand, many times you would not be able to buy every single image you ever wanted, and the company would not be getting that business anyway...but I can see where, if that is the case, you should just do without it then. Similar to music...
You are at least getting publicity, though, if the person correctly acknowledges the company. Again, similar to music being played on the radio. What if we all had to buy every song we ever listened to? Isn't that kind of the same? Yes, if you want to be able to play it whenever you want to, you have to buy it, and should not copy it from someone else. On the other hand, should we not even be able to listen to someone else's copy?

It's a fine line...I totally agree that the images should not be sold, but I'm not quite as convinced about sharing a few in a swap.
That frequently doesn't happen in swaps because the info is not right in front of you as easily as if you had the stamp in hand.
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:57 AM   #37  
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LOL Julie! I was trying to channel you as I wrote it. I stopped to think "Now how would Julie say this?" because I'm not nearly as eloquent!
Hehe..... I try and do that all the time! Miss Julie has such a great way with words.
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Old 03-11-2009, 08:05 AM   #38  
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One of my concerns would be their quality: the quality of paper, the inks, the cleanliness of the image, that all matters to us when we stamp! It would bother me to pay for stamped images that were incomplete or sloppy. On the otherhand, RAK-ing them here on SCS gives us the opportunity to see an image which more than likely (not that I would know - haha) leads me to purchase the actual stamp.
This bothers me as much as Ebay-ers selling other people's card fronts and ATCs. Grrrr...
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Old 03-11-2009, 08:07 AM   #39  
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I actually tend to agree and will not personally swap images anymore.


I would love for some of our stamp company members to chime in on this. I bet the majority of people swapping images would not want to do it if they felt it was an offence to the companies.
Ok- I will also chime in.

I think that what the OP was referring to was most definitely wrong.

and I will also say that I am also against the trading (RAK, WRAK) of images as well. For the simple reason that it undermines the companies that help SUPPORT this site bottom dollar.

I understand the whole try before you buy thing, and that's why there are sales and specials, and most often blog candy offerings from these company owners.

I understand these are tough times for all, but this also includes the companies not only that find their home here, but elsewhere as well.
They are struggling just the same as you and I.
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Old 03-11-2009, 08:12 AM   #40  
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I think that the situation gets very "sticky" because of "online communities". They act like a regular community, but are vastly different. For example, a bunch of us ladies are getting together almost nightly on a post thread because we have a common country and we are swapping images. Some are one's I would never buy, but the image is nice to have one or two of just to see. Others, I have never seen IRL so I swap to see if I like it as much in person.

To me, this is no different than when my local girlfriends and I get together to stamp/scrap. We all inevitably bring different stamps with us, and if I see something that someone has, I'll stamp off an image or two...or we'll trade stamp sets for a few days to take a test drive. If I plan on using the stamp for any length of time, or for more than 1 or 2 cards, I'll go and buy it myself.

Swapping has been going on as long as stamps have been around, just on a much smaller scale...and therein lies the problem I think.

Personally, I do swap images, but I still spend plenty of $$ buying stamps too, and mostly the one's that I've swapped and love.

Very interesting hearing everyone's opinions...I'm definitely going to keep reading this thread.
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