By Karen Somerville, MD of Angels’ Share Glass
For years and years, people working in the creative industries have taken inspiration from the ideas and designs of others.
Not everyone has the creative genius of their own or the drive to be different.
And we’ve all witnessed instances of people taking the notion of inspiration too far – by copying designs and even plagiarising products.
It’s a fact of life that when something is a success - whether it be text, design or a process - it will inevitably be copied in some way.
It’s also a fact that when it happens to you, it makes you mad!
“The audacity of some people!” you think to yourself - but there is also a sense of pity and even a little compassion.
Pity because someone who can only copy others hasn’t found what they are truly good at and are probably not using the valuable skills they have been taught to the full.
The compassion comes from knowing they will never know the joy that comes with the `Wow’ factor of designing something which is truly an original.
Poor copies are the worst while great copies can be seen as flattery.
However, copying all boils down to a lack of imagination, a fear of being ground breaking and never daring to be a little bit different.
Those who copy may thrive on the work of others but their actions can also be hurtful and of course it’s obvious to everyone around them who sees and realises what’s going on.
At Angels’ Share Glass we thrive on being original and groundbreaking and as such, when we re-started our production of glassware under the Angels’ Share Glass Trademark, I made it a priority to protect anything new we designed. Like others in the creative community who are protected by IP, we always have the option of taking legal action against anyone who copies our products if we deem it worthwhile and appropriate.
This gives us the claim to what was our idea and the opportunity to document our innovation and our creative genius. It also gives us a little peace of mind.
We were given sound advice from Scottish Enterprise and the Government IP (International Protection) Department about how to protect our products and I would advise others in a similar position to do the same.
We also acknowledge the work of organisations who are out there and who are willing to speak up for the artists and designers who have their work copied every day such as ACID (Anti Copying In Design) - www.acid.uk.com
It’s inevitable that we will find inferior copies of our work out there in the wider world.
When that happens, we smile knowing that we are the original designers, that someone else took the idea from us.
And that while they think they are good their copy will never live up to the original and they’ll never feel the buzz of that Eureka moment when you come up with a new idea which is truly your own.
Coming up with new ideas and pushing the boundaries of innovation is what we’re all about at Angels’ Share Glass and you can enjoy our original designs in outlets across the UK and throughout the world.
Locally, you will find our original products in Bridge of Allan independent outlets Country Pursuits and Woodwinters. Don’t be fooled by inferiority – make sure you pick an original every time.
This quote from Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz neatly sums up how we feel:
"Many may imitate what you are doing, in fact they could outright copy, what they can’t have is the essence of the idea, the passion that has kept you awake at night with excitement at the thought of launching a new business idea. They can’t copy the integrity that has formulated the plan … nor understand everything that whirrs and cogs behind it nor the commitment that your family and team have made to you to ensure it is successful. You can’t copy the heart and the soul and the conscience of the company.”
Copyright - Howard Schultz, Chairman of Starbucks"