Good Plagiarism

by Roger Pynn

Yesterday’s introduction of the iPad came the same day as an intriguing future buzz post by Dayne Shuda of Hunting Business Marketing touting the importance of imitation in innovation.

Had the iPad been introduced a few days earlier, I imagine Shuda would have pointed to it as proof perfect of his premise. Apple folks have been building on good ideas for ages … proving my longstanding belief that there’s no such thing as original creativity, only good plagiarism. Once they develop a good concept they work tirelessly to milk it for additional opportunities that generate revenue because they’ve outdone themselves.

When I was a newspaper reporter I remember an editor who told me that one day I’d move on because “once you’ve covered one bank robbery, you’ve covered them all.” He was right, and wrong. I moved on, but every time I went to a crime scene I found a new story to tell. My job was to make reading the news interesting … not repetitive.

Shuda’s point is that innovation includes looking at what has already been done and finding new and better ways to meet needs … even if sometimes people don’t know they need anything.

Innovation is not just about invention. It is like a spreadsheet. It is about asking “what if?”

One Response to Good Plagiarism

  1. Dayne Shuda says:

    Thanks for the mention, Roger.

    The iPad is a great example of imitation/innovation. One of the commenters thought so too.

    It’ll be interesting to see if the iPad is successful. And even if it doesn’t catch on I’m sure Apple has other innovations and imitations up their sleeve.

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