July 17, 2013

Why You Shouldn’t Let Fear of Copyright Infringement Get in the Way

Just because it is wrong to steal another person’s idea for a song, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen all the time.  This is the nature of human beings – we see something we like and aim to improve upon it or even learn from it.  The problem is when this general concept gets take to the extremes.  Take a look at the current state of Samsung Phones.  Before the iPhone was successful, Samsung’s phones looked nothing like them.  Now, the S3 and S4 pretty much share the exact same one button design.  Both companies have taken each other to court for various infringement issues.

Where do you draw the line in terms of copyright infringement?  Does it have to be a blueprint in order for it to be copied?  What about copying ideas?  Those don’t necessarily exist on paper, so is there a problem using words and ideas?  The answer is that you can get into some serious trouble simply by using the same lines or catch phrases as another person.  Depending on where you live, the copyright laws may differ, but in all countries there seems to be some protection against using another person’s words in your own work.