How did this happen? We’re already at the final link-up of September!

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Our final FMF writing prompt of September 2023 is: COPY




Setting my timer for five minutes, and . . . GO. 


When my kids were little, they used to do a lot of their learning by copying others. They would copy sounds to learn language. They traced letters to learn handwriting. In art class, we used to learn skills and techniques by copying the masters.

It made sense then, but now the lines have seemed to blur a bit for me. Ethically, when is it okay to copy someone else?

This issue and topic seems to have become more prevalent in recent weeks and months, particularly with regard to various art forms.

I’ve seen posts and articles from well-known authors like Jane Friedman who have become victims of plagiarism from some of the new AI tools that exist.

Fiction author Susan Meissner just shared online that she discovered that five of her books are now part of an AI search engine and are used to “help” people who want to learn “how to write a novel like Susan Meissner.” Of course, she did not give permission for this to take place. Nobody asked her.

In a nearby town, we have an annual festival called ArtPrize. Apparently one of the Top 25 finalists was called into question for “copying” an existing photograph and using it as a basis to create a realistic drawing by hand.

Have the lines blurred? Or is it still black and white?

At what point is it okay to copy someone and their work, and when is it not?

While I realize this is a larger conversation with plenty of nuance, ultimately, as Christians, our primary aim should be to copy our Master — the Lord Jesus Christ.





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