• Think think. This is not about original or non-original posts, as much as it is about ideas and how to keep them original, even when you’ve inspired by something you’ve seen, read or heard.

  1. It’s interesting. I never heard of the ghetto concept and well, I still need to think about it in depth. Blatant copying is ofcourse not welcome at all but cross pollination of ideas sometimes happens unknowingly and I think that’s ok. But then again I still have to think about it.

    • Cross-pollinating in fact is a good thing, don’t you think so? After all, a lot of renowned book critics say that there are no more original story ideas – that authors write about the same ideas in their own unique ways. That’s not blatant copying. I’d argue that it is cross-pollination of an idea.

  2. Stealing is original! Haha! Well I think in this day and age, it’s quite difficult not to see the same content as you do everywhere else. For me, the writer, and the writing, aka the soul, makes all the difference.

  3. I remember Richa trying ( really hard ) to explain Mojo to us .. When some one visits say a city and blogs about it. Chances are no two people’s account would be the same. Even if one actually went there and the other one merely copied info off say Wikipedia and wrote a post. The difference is mojo .

    I believe that plagiarism ( the extreme case of copying) is unethical . Inspiration ( with due credit ) drives a discussion on an idea but honesty I feel ideas standalone don’t hold much value till they are executed effectively . So copying ( without getting morals into picture ) is okay but should be done by adding one’s unique PoV or style to it : perhaps that’s what you meant by stealing .

    Shinjini your posts talk to my head .. You are fast becoming the most intellectually stimulating person I know in the blogosphere .. 😉

    • Yes yes, you are pretty much on the right track here Chandni! Plagiarism is 100% unethical – there are no two ways about that. Copying is simply copying (I gave an example of how artists copy to learn, but famous writers like Hemmingway also copied the work of other writers to learn how to improve their writing). Stealing is when you soak in the influences (or ideas) and mix them with your own POV and style to come up with something that is uniquely yours!

  4. I personally prefer writing about offbeat topics. And if I have a dull plot, spinning around the point of view makes for an interesting read!
    But yes, the ghetto blogging gets too crowded and irritating, and then sometimes I end up reading none of the posts which have the same ideas!

    • Yes, ghetto blogging does get really old, really fast!! Offbeat ideas are fun to work on. And writing things from your experiences and learning, even more so!

  5. Hmm..Ghetto blogging..new concept. Agree with you that there is a difference in copying and getting inspired. Just copying somebody or any idea is wrong but getting inspired is not that wrong ..good one 🙂

    • Yes Deepa! Inspiration after all is everywhere. And no one can say that their writing has never been inspired by something (or even someone, sometimes!). The key is in how you execute it. 🙂

  6. Really interesting post. Good to know about ghetto and cross pollination of ideas. I was once wondering upon the same thing. It’s all about inspiration. 🙂

  7. I loved your take on Copying and stealing. I have been inspired by so many artists and so many works available on Pinterest. Sometimes when I try to mix and match their ideas with mine, I feel this guilt that technically it’s not an original idea. But then art itself is inspired by something or other. Be it the patterns of a flower petal or the splash of colors in the sky. An amalgamation of all these ideas form art. I totally agree that copying to learn a new technique is good. That’s how we learn. That’s why there are so many tutorials out there. Loved reading this post.

    • Yes! Tutorials and copying along with them helps you learn. And mixing and matching various techniques and ideas and doing it in your own style is how you soar as an artist! Technically, most people say that there is no “original” art – all of us are using a common set of techniques – the way we express them, that’s unique! 🙂

  8. Blogging lessons but an interesting take on it. sometimes just a conversation gives you an idea that you can develop on. I would try to refrain from copying though. Stealing and kicking in your creative thinking to create one of your own is better than copying.

    • Like I said – copying is a good way to learn. But that is done in private – it’s never put online. Maybe I should do a post on copying among writers and how try use it to hone their craft! Now that’s a thought. Look out for it soon! 🙂

  9. I have never heard of ghetto concept. Copying is wrong but cross pollination in terms of inspiration with due credit is fine. You made me think. Great post stimulating some creative juices this side 🙂

  10. I saw Richa’s tweet. it’s an interesting concept. But I like what you said – an idea on a blog might spark off another idea on another one. And I think it’s fine as long as we attribute it to the original blog and then take off from there. Originality is great of course but a give and take of ideas, ‘cross pollination’ as you put it isn’t too bad either – specially if it can give birth to something original.

    • I think one idea sparking off a tangential idea is amazing. Like Richa’s tweet on ghetto blogging sparked this one on ideas and how they cross-pollinate, with a side linkage to copying and stealing as a way to learn and develop your style. 🙂

  11. I’ve never heard the term, though I think there is always a danger in not writing from your heart or creating your blog in a way that speaks to what resonates with you (vs. trying to mimic a style or create something from a figurative template).

  12. Ghetto blogging and cross pollination seems interesting and I know many people do that. But, I feel that nothing beats strong and genuine content which is reflection of one’s thought and personality. I have always been dead against copying someone’s work which is unethical. But, I get your drift.

    • I’m not advocating plagiarism you know! I’m saying copying (a technique or style) as a way of learning and honing your craft is a good thing. It’s actually how a lot of famous authors honed their craft too!

  13. I read the tweet in which Richa mentioned about ghetto blogging! Well, I like your perspective on the same! I too feel that stealing ideas is creative in some sense (a lot of analysis, thinking, drafting etc. etc) ! 😛

  14. Cross-pollinating is natural for all creative people, MG. Something inspires us or sparks off an idea. I do appreciate what Richa is saying, which is why I encourage bloggers to read more and not just blogs in the same ghetto!

  15. Very thought provoking and something I had never heard of. I write whatever pops into my head and it is often quite random, I started my blog without ever having read another blog before, but I get your point here. I grew up reading so many books and it is natural that the authors I love have influenced my style, and the way I write. #mg

    • It’s all about influences, isn’t it? We are influenced by the things around us – it is a matter of allowing those influences to percolate within and then come out as our own unique style, or being influenced and just “copying” without giving it time to become ours. I hope that made sense!

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