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Is It Ok To Steal? Yes, If You’re Making Things Better

The common understanding out there about success is that you have to come up with the next big thing. You have to be creative, innovative in order to bring to the table a winning product that will make you a millionaire.

It’s good to think that way, that’s what fuels all the amazing advances and progress that we witness everyday, but that’s not the only way you can become the Mark Zuckerberg of your time.

When Facebook was launched, it wasn’t an entirely new concept. Friendster and MySpace already pioneered the notion of online connectivity. When you go crazy over Alibaba, you have to remember that it’s nothing different than Amazon or eBay. But the catch is, while these are not new, they are different in a positive way.

“Good artists copy, great artists steal.” – Picasso

The key to stealing an idea, or copying it, is that making it better will yield great results for you. Making better, faster, cheaper and bigger is all that matters, not coming up with the next big thing. Chinese master this art gracefully. When they build a copycat for Samsung, Apple, Amazon or all the “made in China” products, no body yells at them for having stolen the concept, because what they sell is so cheap even Steve Jobs would stand in line to buy the 25 bucks fake Apple Chinese manufacturers produce. In fact, if it wasn’t for China your iPhone would set you back 1200 dollars!

Young people, and especially entrepreneurs, break their hands trying to figure out what product or application they can invent that will solve a problem that exists but nobody addressed, and most of the time they forget that having things faster, cheaper, better, bigger or smaller is a problem staring at them right there. We should snap out from the mentality of creating new things to improving existing products.

If you have to steal, steal concepts, products, app ideas and hardware concepts that are already there, and build on them to make them more appealing for people. It doesn’t matter that you didn’t create something totally new, it doesn’t matter if you don’t end up being the inventor you thought you’d be, all that matters is that you’re solving a problem by improving what exists, and improvement is something people will pay a lot for.

Photo Credit: Tumblr.