You know when you think you’ve come up with a great idea, something completely original that has never been done before? Then you visualise putting your idea into action, how the immediate and exponential uptake will change the world as we know it and you’ll be set up for life?
Too many times I have gotten to that point, and then the next thing you know, it pops up in an advertisement or on Dragons Den, or worse still, as a living breathing internet craze…
To date, here are the ideas (that I know of) that have been ruthlessly stolen from me, and been put into action before I lifted a finger.
I’ve always taken lots of photo’s and travelled a fair bit too. As mobile phones with camera’s became widely available around 2001-2002, I dreamed (note the operative word here) of creating a website with all my pictures on, details of my hobbies, interests, links to sites I found, and also a really cool interactive map that allowed you to see where I’d been and browse my photo’s by location. To whit, I used a free hosting and web wizard service (Blogspot) to create a couple of pages, which I decided to call ‘You looking silly on the internet‘. Genius. Upon showing my brief tinkerings (the photo’s don’t even display in the intended order) to a friend or five, they pretty much all concluded; ‘that’s cool, you’ll have to show me how to do that’. At this point I very much realised I would at no point sit down to tediously walk someone else through the basics of what I managed myself by following simple instructions, and I ALSO realised at no point would they bother to work it out themselves. And therein lay the answer – the key was not going to be to try to teach other people to use a free web service, it was going to be in Enabling them to do it more effortlessly. And then obviously Zoldemort stole my idea, and created the eponymous Farcebook.
More: 6 other stolen ideas and a business conclusion