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View Poll Results: Do you feel it is okay to use someone else's design or similiar design in competition
Yes 25 31.65%
No 54 68.35%
Voters: 79. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-20-2014, 07:25 AM   #1  
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Default Using another's design in competition or for profit

How would you feel if you went to an exhibit and saw cards that were, if not exact copies of another's design then pretty close to it, submitted in competition?

Do you feel it is okay to case someone's design for competition? Yes or no.
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Old 10-20-2014, 08:15 AM   #2  
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For clarification, this happened this week at a fair.
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Old 10-20-2014, 10:54 AM   #3  
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I have somewhat mixed feelings about stuff like this. There are only so many ways you can arrange things on a card size piece of paper. Do you know for certain that the person in question made an "exact copy" of someone else's work?

It is entirely possible that two people could think up a similar design and put it on a card.

This is a big ole world we live in, and there are lots of places that provide inspiration. The person who made the card might have seen something like it someplace and not even remember where she saw it.

I don't have a problem with artists copyrighting their actual images, but as far as the "design" or how things are arranged on a card, I think I would give the person a pass.
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Old 10-20-2014, 11:59 AM   #4  
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This is a very tricky and fraught subject. Some people would be angry that their work had been copied, others would be delighted and see it as a compliment. As Buggainok says, it is very difficult to design something that is not similar to someone else's work, somewhere or somehow. I often case, and use similar stamps I have if a design/ layout on a card takes my fancy. Exact copy I think would be wrong, after all the point usually of such competitions is to encourage creativity, but similarity is a whole different ball game, and would be hard to call.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:01 PM   #5  
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At a fair - well lets put it this way everything entered in a cooking/crafting category can be copied.

Most "card designs" are just logical patterns using the tenants of good design. Seriously, quilters don't come up with a new design they use patterns, they use designs and their talent and then enter the quilt. AND yes two quilts can be nearly identical.

Bakers don't go out and grow their grain and all their ingredients and I bet they use the same ingredients as the next baker etc.

I think unless it is truly a unique, one off, original creation that has never in the history of mankind ever been used before it is very difficult to get upset about this particular subject.

Thus I voted yes, because people use patterns all the time in competitions. It is the quality of the overall workmanship that is usually being assessed which includes the use of the pattern but is broader on overall perspective.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:08 PM   #6  
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I would add that I don't think most fair competition ask for unique, original design - they ask for unique, original craftsmanship.
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Old 10-20-2014, 01:40 PM   #7  
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SUO Challenges 102 | jk cards

Cuttlebug card | Helens Card Designs

These are the two cards in question. There are way too unique to be considered just a layout copy. The wreath stamp used the exact same wooden background and the same wreath. The card that looked like a dress may have been a different color, but folding the card to look like a dress with collar and putting pearls around the neck, was just too similar.
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:29 PM   #8  
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I have seen the cardigan/suit/shirt card for years - many variations on the theme including graduation but they are out there.

The other isn't OTT original, and reminds me of a lot of cards from last Christmas.

Now all that being said. If you have an issue with it the best thing is to ask for clarification of the rules from those organizing the competition. And only you can decide if it is worth it. Unless they follow those specific blogs etc, from my experience with fairs normally the judges are just random people from the community who don't necessarily have a relevant background. Personally, I would tread carefully with any inquiry or complaint if you are in a small community.

I doubt they are going to withdraw the win at this point. So is it worth it, and all the fall out, to formally complain?
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:39 PM   #9  
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I'd have to agree with what everyone else has already said. You would be very hard pressed to create a totally unique card layout these days. And, not to knock anyone here, but to me almost all the cards using SU supplies are going to look the very similar, if not pretty much identical - at least they do to me and I'm sure I'm not the only one that thinks/sees that. I wouldn't say that an exact copy would be "morally acceptable", but like I said, if theres a couple people entering and they happen to be using the same products (SU, PTI, etc.) then they very well may come up with cards that look like one copied off the other.

As for using cards as inspiration or casing with your own flair & creativity, well that's what this craft is mostly about - learning and building on what we have learned and have seen other crafters do.
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:54 PM   #10  
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I will add that when I was in High School I used to enter my art class work. Everyone in the class was set the same work. Draw this. Paint that. etc. Now of course there was a little more flexibility but you can see what I am getting out that the idea to draw this or paint that wasn't mine. It was set out before me.

So maybe, just maybe this card maker was in a similar situation, she went to a class and the project was set before her and that is what she created. Yeah, it isn't necessarily original but she created it, not the stamper next to her.

I would love to know the prizes - Our local fair is $5 for 1st place, $3 for 2nd, $2 for 3rd. Doesn't even cover gas to take it there.
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:56 PM   #11  
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$17 for first, can't remember the rest.
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Old 10-20-2014, 02:58 PM   #12  
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And so everyone knows, I am certainly not calling the copies out to the fair officials, just want originality to be used going forward.
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Old 10-20-2014, 03:07 PM   #13  
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So you are going to raise it with them? Otherwise they may not know.
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Old 10-20-2014, 03:14 PM   #14  
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What would you do?
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Old 10-20-2014, 04:34 PM   #15  
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I'd leave it well alone. Life's too short and karma's a b**** - let the Universe take care of it, if needed...
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Old 10-20-2014, 04:56 PM   #16  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by gregzgurlView Post
I'd leave it well alone. Life's too short and karma's a b**** - let the Universe take care of it, if needed...
I agree.

Rule No. 1: Don't sweat the small stuff.

Rule No. 2: It's all small stuff!
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Old 10-20-2014, 05:56 PM   #17  
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I'm pretty much with Sue and Bugga.

If I were worried sick - I would do something but this time it is too late. Join the Fair Board. Go to the Meetings to draft the rules. Be the change.

I think unless any of us know any different then we should give every entrant the benefit of the doubt.

As I said, if I went to a class and learnt a craft I wouldn't have any hesitation in submitting my class work for judging.

Why do we get so possessive with card making?

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Old 10-20-2014, 07:14 PM   #18  
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And there is always this:

"Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."

Charles Caleb Colton
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Old 10-20-2014, 07:24 PM   #19  
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I think Kristen's "be the change" idea is the best yet
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Old 10-21-2014, 07:04 AM   #20  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by jackaroojrtView Post
How would you feel if you went to an exhibit and saw cards that were, if not exact copies of another's design then pretty close to it, submitted in competition?

Do you feel it is okay to case someone's design for competition? Yes or no.
I would "feel" that the other person was severely lacking in creativity and integrity if they had to copy my design. Designing the card is the hard part. There's no excuse for that, especially in a competition. I consider it cheating.

Even if the rules didn't mention originality, why would someone NOT want to make something unique???

In the big picture, it is a small thing, but a lie is still a lie, no matter how small. I wouldn't say or do anything, but I would have the satisfaction of knowing that the person who used my design knew it, did it anyway and thought no one would know.

No, it's not OK to copy someone else's card for a contest.
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Old 10-21-2014, 09:53 AM   #21  
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i think copying another persons work for a published contest (and winning that contest) would be a far bigger misstep than creating something for a county/state fair.

I was very active in 4-H when I was young and one of my projects that won a blue ribbon was a paint-by-number image. it wasn't judged on originality it was judged on technique. Same thing with a dress I sewed using a pattern bought at the store.


But, if i had worked hard to come up with an original design (truly original is becoming more rare) and then someone copied it exactly and won say $100 or more I would, in all likelihood be peeved and would feel compelled to stir the pot to try and make things right.
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Old 10-21-2014, 03:08 PM   #22  
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There are only a certain amount of 'new' ideas to go around. It is very hard to come up with something completely new and different...variations exist. But a blatant, outright copy..colour, message, flowers and design etc. for a competition for money is not in my humble opinion the right thing to do!
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Old 10-22-2014, 08:45 AM   #23  
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I am a "paint by numbers" person. I am crafty but, I couldn't come up with an original card if I tried. I have a whole file folder on my computer of card ideas ready to "case".

I have no reservations about selling my cards as I believe in the term "pattern"...I may not have the original idea but, I have purchased the supplies and did the work. However, since it is not my idea I would never enter that card into a competition.
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Old 10-22-2014, 09:37 AM   #24  
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I still disagree that this was exceptionally grievous. It was a fair not a submission to be a certified member of Fine Arts Society. That to me is the difference.

Fair competitions have a bazillion categories that are filled to the brim of people that have completed their submission in a class settings or even at home from kits, from quilting, tatting, painting, scrapbooking, knitting, crochet, wreath making, flower arranging etc.

This to me would be like telling my friend that he couldn't show his custom car because he didn't make the car or come up with the idea to customize it even though he did all the work.

Now, don't get me wrong, if the person ups the ante and is making a living off others' ideas and designs I would have issues. But then again that is pretty much what Martha Stewart did and people love her for it.
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Old 10-22-2014, 09:49 AM   #25  
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Also wanted to add that no stamped or patterned paper card is truly original. We didn't draw the stamps, manufacture the die, create the embossing folder, design the patterned paper...

And I daresay when a card is one that is SUO and all the ingredients are from a specific catalog that pretty much all the card designs were designed before any of it went to manufacturing to ensure variety and compatibility.

I know I wouldn't manufacture odd things. I would manufacture things that went together on an ideas board.
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Old 10-22-2014, 12:31 PM   #26  
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I still think it's indefensible to copy someone else's work because you don't have a fresh idea. If you have to cheat at a little county fair, you shouldn't bother to enter. It has nothing to do with the bazillion stamps or paper designs out there that anyone can use. It's an issue of personal honesty.
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Old 10-22-2014, 12:55 PM   #27  
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1st, we sitting here as judge and jury to someone who isn't here to defend themselves (nor do we have actual evidence, just a picture of what is alleged to be copied).

2nd, we don't have any evidence that this person didn't do this work on their own. As I pointed out, according to the OP all the ingredients for this card are out of the SU holiday catalog.

3rd, the person did make the card (as far as we know).

4th, Fairs have a bazillion categories as I pointed out above
Quote:

categories that are filled to the brim of people that have completed their submission in a class settings or even at home from kits, from quilting, tatting, painting, scrapbooking, knitting, crochet, wreath making, flower arranging etc

Read more: Using another's design in competition or for profit by jackaroojrt at Splitcoaststampers
Are we being specific to card making or is no one allowed to reproduce a recipe/pattern for a fair entry? And if only card making why?

Lastly, we don't have the "rules" for the fair. If the only criteria is handmade then this meets it.

FWIW at our county fair our Hobby regs are -

"1 - All exhibits must be completely by the exhibitor.
2 - Entries must be made in the name of the person who made the article"

That is it.

The Art regs are longer and mention being framed and originality. Cards are not art unless they are submitted as art which would mean in the case of our fair they would be framed. And yes I have seen some cards that should be classified as art but in the end cards would be in the hobby section of any fair and the PRIMARY requirement is did the exhibitor complete the article - so did they make the card?

Yeah, I get how it niggles people. But in this case unless this fair's rules were significantly different, I can't agree.

Now entering a specific card making competition, such as ones run for publication and on manufacturer and stamp vendors websites I agree that originality is paramount.
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Old 10-22-2014, 08:00 PM   #28  
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I'm confused. As a newbie...I know there are hundreds of sketches out there that I am meant to use. Which is the core of a layout right?

Is the Q that what I enter for competition cant use a sketch, or that the examples here totally copied someone else's EXACT design?

I dont see the comparison between the wreath card and the dress card? Unless the originals are somewhere else?

Now...here is the caveat to me: If the originals were in a mfg gallery to promote sales of product like stamps...then to me, copying that is like painting by numbers and fair game b/c the premise is "you can make this too!" if you buy our product...

I dont know though if I would enter it in a competition of any level unless I did something significant to make it "mine". That would be like using a recipe out of a book for a competition. Hmm.

Did the fair listing say "original" works? That would matter a great deal to me.
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Old 10-23-2014, 03:20 AM   #29  
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I think it all comes down to intention. If I plan to enter something into a contest (the type doesn't matter to me), then my intention is to create something that is original. If I use something that someone else made as inspiration, and it turns out to look a lot like the original, that is OK in my mind. If I set out to copy it exactly, and then claim that it is my work, then that's dishonest to me. The problem is that sometimes you can't tell just from looking at an entry what the entrant's intention was. Also, the rules are often unclear about this. I think these competitions and contests rely heavily on scruples and good moral conscience. I know others will probably disagree, but this is how I approach things like these. It's also why I don't enter many contests, especially the ones in which just about anyone can "vote" on the entries. I've seen too many in which the entrants' friends vote over and over for their submissions. (But that's another topic for another thread.)

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Old 10-23-2014, 04:03 AM   #30  
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I'm still betting a "fair" entry was did you make it? Yes. You can enter it.
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:09 AM   #31  
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But is casing and getting very close to a card design, really unethical. In my opinion I don't think so. How many challenges on here have we been asked "to case" someones card. I know I have done it at least 3 times in a challenge. In fact once I had the exact stamp and used in on the card.

I have a friend who asked me if she could buy the exact same back-splash material and design that I had just put in my kitchen. Then she asked if I would mind if she put the same counter-tops in that I had just put in. I told that anyone could purchase and use the same materials that I used. They sell them everyday at Lowe's. I didn't have a copy right on the material. In fact I was really flatter that she like the way I did my kitchen.

Same when people ask me where I got something, so they could go buy it too. I know I have asked people where they got something and then went out and bought the very same thing.
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Old 10-23-2014, 10:52 AM   #32  
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I thought about it. I have not entered, nor have any plans to enter any contests btw.

Using a sketch would be like a quilter using a pattern. Which actual fabric pieces they put in is their choice and how they embellish it, and I would think that was a legal entry for a contest.

But if I exactly copied another person's quilt fabric patterns, etc.-no. That I would never enter. Is that a good analogy?

I wouldnt care if someone copies my card to send to a friend. I would care if they took my design and entered it in a contest-esp one where they get important recognition for the work (vs prizes) like get to be on a design team. (Not that I have to worry about that anytime soon lol)

There are people in the world who dont want their homes or clothing copied and some dont care. I wouldnt. I dont even care if I show up to work in the same dress-though I think I dont want to do that for a party. What I tend to stress to people would be more like "Dont make the same mistake I did" or "I discovered this hidden issue-so be ready for it".
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Old 10-23-2014, 12:23 PM   #33  
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I agree to a point. I think a fair normally is a very inclusive process and if they, the organizers of the competition, are ok with any item as long as it was made by entrant, who are we to say it is wrong?

I have seen loads of kit projects entered for these types of things. The important thing in these fair categories isn't originality it is creating something/anything, do it well AND participate.
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Old 10-23-2014, 02:37 PM   #34  
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That is a good point Kristen.
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Old 10-23-2014, 03:44 PM   #35  
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I'm really enjoying this discussion. I like reading everyone's opinions, and just about everyone seems to be courteous and pleasant. It's a nice combination.

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Old 10-24-2014, 07:06 AM   #36  
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I am following this thread with interest. This topic is why I am hesitant to post my creations online. Not so much because I am worried about being copied but because I am afraid of inadvertently copying someone else.

Like most of us, I enjoy looking at the beautiful work posted in the SCS gallery, various blogs and Pinterest. I don't copy cards exactly because I'm like that, even when cooking. (I rarely follow recipes exactly; I like making my own substitutions and additions.) When I purposely CASE the work of others, I use their layout or color scheme or a technique as a jumping off point. But my card will look markedly different in the end.

My workmanship and skills are good enough that I can sit down and create on my own without something to CASE. But I'm working with the same materials from the same companies as many others and my ideas are not specifically unique. I don't want to be accused of copying if I post something that ends up being similar to someone else's work. There's no way I can keep up with where I originally saw every element that inspired me so I can give credit. It's just not possible.

All that said, I do think it is wrong to copy someone else's work exactly for any contest or submission, regardless of the venue. And just changing the sentiment or the color of the ribbon is not enough, IMO. I do sympathize with the OP's frustration.
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