Debates about game clones have been all the rage lately, covered in these pages as well as the NYT, but one author has a rousing defense of stealing other people’s ideas. Author Austin Kleon’s new book Steal Like An Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told About Being Creative makes the argument that stealing ideas is a way of being. He tells Fast Company:
Creativity has become a kind of magic that only a few lone geniuses are supposed to perform. Take drawing, for instance—if you give a room of 5-year-olds a crayon and some butcher paper, you’ll get a room full of pictures, no problem. If you give a room full of 16-year-olds a crayon and some butcher paper, you’ll get maybe one or two pictures and a whole lot of blank stares. What happened? At some point, we become aware that there are people who are “good” at drawing and people who are “bad” at drawing. The world starts being split up into those who have it and those who don’t.
They do not answer the question of whether it’s ok to steal Kleon’s book.