TL;DR – We might saw the same products upon scrolling online platforms, and entrepreneurs are vulnerable to copycats.
Today, as I scroll down my explore page on Instagram, a familiar image that I thought belonged to a local brand online appeared. To our surprise, it was not the brand that I thought it was.
As I went through their Instagram account I was shocked to see how every detail of their product, from the concept to the product they sold and even the layout of their page, was exactly identical to the local brand I recognized. Have you been in the same situation as I have?
This is known as plagiarism, and it has spread like wildfire in our business culture. Plagiarism involves using another person’s language (e.g. spoken/written phrases/ terms), ideas, or creative work without giving credit to that person.
Plagiarism also appears in the form of presenting the material as the original work.
Naelofar Hijab, a local brand that belongs to the actress and TV host, Neelofa, had also been plagiarized before by a textile company in Vietnam. The textile company copied the scarf designs from Naelofar Hijab, which lead to a law suit filed by Neelofa, and further actions were taken to stop them from producing fake designs of the original brand at a much cheaper price.
The influx of entrepreneurs these days wanting to start a business is overwhelming. The reality is that many are unemployed as a direct effect of the downturn of our economy and many who have been laid-off work; starting a business would therefore seem reasonable.
When there are too many colliding ideas in the business industries, some would take the easy way out by duplicating the design of their website, files or brochures for marketing purposes from other existing companies.
A website is essential in the Digital Age and it must be readily available on Google so that it can be found by people around the world. Not having enough funds to hire a website builder is also one of the reasons why they duplicate from others.
Plagiarism is a direct violation of the copyright of the owner, especially when they are protected under intellectual property rights, which falls under different categories; patent, trade mark, industrial design, geographical indication and copyright. Entrepreneurs need to know the rights to protect their invention, especially to keep their invention appreciated and original all the time.