I’ve been reflecting on this Facebook post I wrote in February 2018. Back then I was referring to what is happening on social media, or as Lady Gaga calls it: “the toilet of the internet”. I trusted the legal profession to step in because what’s happening on social media is not delivering justice to the world. At least according to me, and I assume a few other sources agree?

In 2015, I noticed on Facebook how the work of artists and creatives I admire was being plagiarised and their rights infringed. This triggered my emotions. I discovered articles about other artists and creatives who were facing the same challenges. And I realised how it affected their creativity and motivation negatively. Artists and creatives showed me the beauty in life. They inspire me. This is why I want to help them.

The motivation to help the creative community inspired my thesis: “Stimulating African economies by synergising authentic design with ethical innovation”. I wanted to support entrepreneurs the same way I do now, but I also wanted to help them internasionalise their products.

While in Berlin, during the last three months of my stay in Germany, busy re-evaluating my path, I came across this quote by Steven Keeva: “Law is one of the great healing professions. While medicine heals the body, and the clergy heals the soul, the law heals societal rifts.”

This quote inspired me to create awareness of the harm one could cause for artists and creatives, whether it be an infringement of their rights to privacy or copying their artwork.

It inspired me to be a voice that speaks up for authentic artists, creatives and other entrepreneurs. To provide a sounding board for them. Where they can express their anger and release their emotions in challenging situations. And, if necessary, to connect them to professionals who can assist them, so they can focus on their work, stay motivated and continue to inspire us.

No one wins with imitation. Beautiful, inspiring expressions of creativity become spam. Because everyone’s content looks the same. And that’s when imitation kills innovation.

I’m relieved that Facebook is currently addressing these issues and I trust that, together with the legislators, they will find a solution.

Image credit
Photographer: Lesca Lea

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