The Sidetrack Cafe No. 4: In Support of Authenticism (Part II)
I rarely post directly; often, we discuss things and we throw ideas around and I'll throw in my two cents, but I leave the writing for the most part to Jan and sit at my computer in the other room and fight with code - but today I thought I'd type English and weigh in on the ongoing discussion that we generated with our What Happened to the Magic post.
We've received a ton of response from this post; most of it echoing our feelings about copying (note "copying" vs. "deriving inspiration from"), and I think a lot of the community out there feels in some way the same as us, but we've also heard from others that either feel differently, or who are misconstruing our message. We want to strongly emphasize that we fully support "newbies" and new, up and coming artists, or any other community members who are discovering and exploring the handmade landscape. Our whole concept from the beginning was to support indie and emerging talents, many of whom found exposure difficult and hard to come by, and to provide a community and voice to so many of the great artists that we discovered online. We certainly don't want to discourage any new artists; new artists are the life blood of what we see beauty in.
But, what we do feel strongly about is misuse of the hard work and many years of love and passion that artists put into honing their craft, only to have it blatantly ripped off by people/companies with no accreditation or (heaven forbid) monetary reward for all the effort/love/passion/time they've put in. All the great crafts and handmade's that are out there have been born of an artist's hard work and thoughtful reflection, to see all that effort being misappropriated is - in my wife's words - sad (my words are not as kind - but then, she's a beautiful person).
We've also seen some feedback that speaks to not worrying about all this copying stuff, not "getting bogged down" and to just keep on creating and let this other stuff work it's own way out, and I really wished the world would work like that, but, alas, it doesn't. I think we all need to take responsibility, because only by working together to protect our own works can we create an atmosphere where an artists' sweat can be valued. Copying does matter, and we need an appropriate response to it.
(Part III to this post is here.
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