Copy Cats

After a short coffee break, we are back Dream Weavers! This week we are talking all about copy cats. We have accused others of copying our creative idea, and maybe we have even copied fellow creative citizens. Either way, Meg is here to teach you the difference between inspiration and blatantly taking someone’s idea. She will also dive into how to properly handle these situations.


Tony Robbins said, “If you want to be successful, find someone who has achieved the results you want and copy what they do and you'll achieve the same results.” Do you agree with this? I’m not quite sure if I do. Yes, I’ve heard of the book “Steal Like An Artist.” I know that to get good at something, we may have to copy the work of the masters first. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a fine line between inspiration, and blatantly stealing someone’s work.

Are any ideas original? How do we know if we are copying someone else’s work? When is it the right time to call someone else out on taking our work? Here’s what I have to say about that in Episode 6, “Creativity in general is the wild west. So here's the thing, at the end of the day, I think it's about just figuring out how to really own the things we're doing, feel good, and like we have integrity in that, and then honor our competition in the ways that allow us to exist in a community with our competitors and not be seen as infringing.”

Here are some things to consider when you aren’t sure of the difference between being inspired, and copying.

Number One

  • If you're aware that you're clearly being directly influenced by someone's idea within your circle, then you should credit them for the inspiration they give you as a courtesy and as it seems appropriate to do so.

  • What about when you’re worried someone else will copy your ideas? Well, think about this-Even if you give them a step by step cheat sheet of how to be you in a certain situation, they're not going to be able to do it just like you.

Number Two

  • Yes, we are allowed to be inspired by our fellow creatives. It’s an incredible thing to be surrounded by women that are doing interesting, powerful and creative work. HOWEVER, remember this, “If you want to copy, something that someone close to you are within your circle is doing, then consider taking the concept and making it your own somehow rather than simply doing the exact same thing.”

  • Allow it to be inspiration and not just a template for copying.

Number Three

  • Consider that the more specific you are and you're copying, the more likely someone else will feel you're stealing their idea. If you’re friend has a podcast, and you want to start a podcast, that is not copying. Everyone wants to have a podcast. Your friends doesn’t own podcasting. Buuuuuut,
    if your friend starts a business making sugar cookies designed to look like little fun shines and you do the same thing, that's you being an asshole.

Number Four

  • Consider the closeness of the relationship. If it's a colleague or just someone you know in the community, they might need to buck up and deal with the fact that you're both in the same industry doing similar things.

Alright Dream Weavers… Those are my thoughts on copying. We all do it and we all accuse others of doing it to us. However we muse remember that there is a balance between, “There is nothing new under the sun,” and “That person copied my work verbatim.” Always act on inspiration with respect, and be a good creative citizen.


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That’s all Dream Weavers! I can’t wait to chat next time!

Meg Witt