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I think the right answer is the following: if you want innovation, overpay your engineers. Give them a stable environment, the right tools, and plenty of cash
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Syntactically challenged much? And for the record, what about my post is intellectually dishonest?
And speaking of skewed, your argument that you are just "making a copy of something" is outright laughable. There would be no opportunity for you to make that copy if the owner had not expended their creative abilities and time to create the original - thus you are diminishing that work's value by stealing it from them. Worse yet, you're trying to rationalize it as "just making a copy".
Is it as bad as property theft? No, I don't think that it is, but it is still stealing.
Uh, no. The problem with the pervasive "well, they did it so I can too" attitude is that anybody can rationalize anything: "I think the other guy is probably cheating, so I will too". "I think my employer is screwing me over, so I'll screw them first". "The company's CEO is getting paid way too much so I'll just help myself to their products". The truth doesn't matter as long as you can come up with an excuse.
If you have conditionally based morals then you have none at all.
I wonder if your grandfather would feel so smug.