Overheard on Twitter

Whilst keeping an eye on the Shapeways Twitter stream, I often notice little exchanges that may be of interest to Shapeways users like the one below. It shows how Twitter can be used to expose and sell your 3D printed models on Shapeways.

@cialina http://twitpic.com/8a19n – Please please please tel me where you got this!! My life would actualy be compete if I had one.

@alice_morrissey cant buy it anywhere. designed it in engineering at school. had it 3D printed. only 2 were made.

Firstly we see that someone has designed and 3D printed something for
themselves that deeply resonates with someone on the other side of the
globe who is willing to pay for it. 

Secondly, the response from the designer nonchalantly indicates that it
is a bespoke item that cannot be purchased, creating exclusivity and
product scarcity for something that obviously has a market. 

Thirdly, by simply uploading the STL file to Shapeways the designer could leverage this interest into a sale in a matter of seconds.

Finally a brief interaction on Twitter discussing a design can be picked up by a third party and posted on a blog without any effort on your part…

Sign up to follow Shapeways on Twitter and start tweeting about your designs.

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  1. fracai

    Pretty sure that any market this item has would belong to J.K. Rowling and uploading the STL to sell it would violate copyright. It’s one thing to make your own for personal use, I think this would fall under fair use, but selling it clearly wouldn’t.

    1. Duann

      Thanks Fracai,

      I did not know it was a Harry Potter based design, I guess that does change the whole “designed and 3D printed something for themselves that deeply resonates with someone on the other side of the globe who is willing to pay for it.” to a totally different kind of interaction.

      And the second and third points may also be rendered therefore void, but the final point, where a twitter interaction may bring attention to your design (even if it is not actually your design) still holds true.

    2. fracai

      Aside from that though… still a cool exchange. :-)

      And I’ve seen plenty of others making, and selling, their own pendants. Not that that makes it right, but it does happen. It still speaks to the creativeness (thinking to design and print something, even if it’s based on another’s copyright) and emotional impact (“I want it, I want it”).

      It also speaks to the need for a way to authorize, or deny, this type of design work.

  2. ambiguX

    That is exactly what I miss in the Share- and new DIY-community: Ethical awareness of other people’s hard work – vulgo Copyright.
    “Because the original is so expensive DIY and sell it at %your shop%” is nothing but CopyIY!

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