Today we've had to unfortunately remove a tutorial due to copyright issues. As all creatives should, we take copyright very seriously here at Psdtuts+. The tutorial in question has been removed, the author has not been paid, and I'll personally be investigating further to get in touch with the original author to apologize and ensure everything is sorted out.
It's a bit of a crappy situation for all concerned, but a good reminder that it's always important to:
Always credit your sources
When you credit your sources, it's clear that you aren't trying to hide something. For tutorial submissions it also lets our editors check that the tutorial is acceptable. Although Sean and I are pretty on the ball, it's impossible to know every image, artist, magazine, so things can slip by. But if you credit your sources we'll be able to make sure you're in the clear.
Use common sense
There are no hard and fast rules about copyright. Beware of "rules" like "copying 40% is OK". There's no such thing. And remember that even aside from exact words or images, it can be the idea or principle. In this case, the images of the tutorial and wording were all original, but it was still apparent that it was not an original tutorial in itself.
Err to the side of caution
I'm no lawyer, but whenever I've dealt with lawyers, I've learned that they are always more cautious than I would be. If you think something might not be OK, then trust your gut and don't do it.
Finally, I know that the author did suggest that many tutorials here on Psdtuts+ aren't really demonstrating new or original effects. In many ways this is true, and in fact we have tutorials that show how to duplicate a certain type of effect or look. However we strive to make sure that (a) the tutorials are not copies of another tutorial, and (b) there is enough originality involved for the tutorial to be worth publishing.
In the end, we're all operating in creative industries and it's important to remember that our creations should be respected and treated as such. Anyhow onwards and upwards. Sorry for the slight disruption in the posting schedule. All shall return to normal tomorrow!