Opinion: From our Readers - Ideas are too unique, complex to be banked

The suggestion of a PR industry 'ideas bank' (Letters, 16 October) to identify and protect the origin of ideas is, sadly, flawed.

Although it could be a useful tool for helping practitioners to arrive quicker at possible options, it fails to recognise that the impact, quality and value of an idea are actually determined by its context of time and place.

The creative value of an idea is not just the combination of elements within it, but how it delivers in its environment. We have all had ideas that have bombed in one situation but produced results in another.

Also, ideas are complex structures, where the slightest change in one aspect can spell the difference between success and failure, thus rendering any 'protection' in an ideas bank worthless.

The best insurance for the creative practitioner is to keep one step ahead. As Kipling wrote: 'They copied all they could follow, but they couldn't copy my mind, so I left them sweating and stealing, a year and a half behind.'

Andy Green, partner, Green Communications

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