What would you do?

rb-frontOK I need a little advise.  At convention this year I was involved in a 3D group swap.  I made 30 of these recipe books.  It was my original idea and they all had my name and information on them.  The idea of the swap was to get ideas for classes to do with your customers.  Since then I know two of my up-line have had a class for this project which is fine with me.  I too have looked at offering some of the ideas I got as classes.  I’ve displayed many of them at my events, but I think I have always tried to say that they were not my ideas and that someone else made them.  Especially when I was asked about them.

 In July Stampin’ Up! started a contest for class ideas.  I’ve had so many people tell me they loved my cook book so I thought I would enter it into Stampin’ Up!’s contest.  I missed the cut off for the last one, but because it is and on going contest I figured I would just wait until the next one to enter it.  However today when I was on the Demonstrator site they announced the winners of the last contest.  They also showed other entries into the contest.  I love to look at these and was excited to get the new ideas.  I was scrolling down through the projects that were the other ideas (not the winners) and to my surprise I saw my cookbook.  I was curious so I clicked on the link to the project instructions.  The only difference between her project and mine was the front cover.  She stamped the saying directly on the red and she rounded the corners of the chef picture.  At first I thought that maybe she just saw the idea and liked it so she created one similar.  Then I started to look closer.  I found she had used the exact same colors and I realized that she hadn’t stamped the words on the pages like I had, instead she just told you to do so in the instructions.  She had just one picture with the words stamped on it which I realized was actually a picture of my book.  I decided to do a little more investigating and was able to find her demonstrator website where I found a picture of the front of my book along with a caption that said “Convention/Swap Class.”  That was when I realized she had been in the swap with me.

To say the least I felt a little hurt and frustrated.  Not that she loved my idea and wanted to use it in a class, but that she used it for a contest and was passing it off as her own.   I have often created projects inspired by other ideas, and often created projects that are the same or similar to others.  In such cases I feel I have always tried to give credit for their ideas as I have seen many other wonderful demonstrators do.  I have spent many hours coming up with my own original ideas to enter into the Stampin’ Up! contests.  I love to share my idea’s with others to help you be inspired.  I want to continue to do so without being afraid that my original projects are going to be used to win a contest.  I don’t want to be the bad guy here but I’m conflicted on what to do and how to handle the situation.  I could really use your comments and suggestions.  Please let me know how you would feel if you were me and what you would do.  Thanks, so much for you help.  Candice

You can see all the pages of the book in my samples just click here.
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