Stealing is wrong, right? It’s something we’re taught when we’re little kids, “don’t steal cookies from the cookie jar, Jimmy!” phrases like that span generations, or perhaps since cookie jars were invented, who the hell knows what people kept cookies in before that jar was deemed worthy of such a title. Cookies or not, there are far bigger things that are stolen or misrepresented on this wonderful thing we call the internet everyday, movies, albums, TV shows, computer programs, games, are illegally downloaded everyday. Intellectual Property law is sort of a new thing for people to wrap their brains around in the age of the Internet, but in our case — in the case of The Hunger Games fandom, I feel it’s something we should all become well versed in for our own safety, and for all our own mental healths sake.
I think if it happened to you, you’d feel powerless, and you just sit there for a second, eyes blinking at the screen looking at your work being uncredited, or credited to someone else entirely. You balk, and then you just plain fume, and then hopefully you do something about it. It’s kind of astounding how pervasive this practice has become really, especially on University campuses. This is taken directly from Plagiarism. org.
- 72% of students reported one or more instances of serious cheating on written work
- 15% had submitted a paper obtained in large part from a term paper mill or website
- 52% had copied a few sentences from a website w/o citing the source
- over 45% admitted to collaborating inappropriately with others on assignments
Now, in the case of fandom violations of intellectual property laws I don’t know the statistics, but I know it happens a lot in such places as Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, DeviantART, IMDB, LiveJournal, FanFiction.net, just to name a few. I think reblogging may be the most prevalent offense, and I don’t mean clicking reblog on Tumblr and legitimately reblogging something, I mean clicking reblog, keeping it in drafts, reposting it, but erasing the source, i.e. the information that would lead anyone to know that the graphic, or picture set, or drawing was actually posted and created by somebody else. Some might just shrug this off, and say something akin to “oh, well — that’s just the nature of the beast.” Well, this not!beast says this in response “no way in hell.” People work hard on their graphics, their stories, their drawings, paintings, photographs, and blogs, and when their names are stripped from their work — it’s kind of like a little part of them dies. I know that’s overly dramatic, but if you’re an artist you might understand.
Bottom line kids, don’t steal people’s work, don’t reblog and remove the source, don’t cut n paste from one site to another without giving credit where credit is due, and don’t think it doesn’t matter if you do — because it just does.
Them There Eyes