This is a matter that has become of great relevance nowadays.
I usually join Facebook art groups to meet new artists and receive critiques and interact with the artistic community, but all I see nowadays is that the art community is INFESTED with these people I call False Artists.
So what is, in essence, a False Artist?
I consider False Artists those who limit themselves to copy an imagem (being a photo or another person's drawing) and post it online WITHOUT the image where they copied from and in most of the cases, not crediting the original creator.
Whenever I enter a Facebook group, It is extremely common to see people doing this. And my immediate reaction is to comment alerting the person for what he/she is doing and searching for the original picture and posting it on the comments, because as an "artist" I respect art and respect other people's work! And most of the time, the person still returns with nasty comments instead of being humble and accepting her mistake.
Undestand that when copying, you are not learning any more concept than those of copying. So, you become good at copying but not good at drawing. Because COPYING is not DRAWING. Drawing is the act of creating something by your means and hands, it's original and completely yours. By copying, nothing is yours. The reproduction you create is not yours, everything you put on paper was already there to begin with, just on another format. That's why I consider people who copy photos and post it as their own drawings not artists. They are reproducers, copyists, call them whatever you like but THAT is not being an artist. If you want to copy something, copy and idea, concept, not the form of things.
This is a major concern because it is ILLEGAL to copy. And this leads to other nasty things too. People nowadays cannot tell apart good art from bad art, because they are used to seeing bad art. I have seen groups where a copy or reproduction would get all the credit and an original art would be ignored and discarded, even if it were better than the copy.
For clearing things out, I AM NOT against copying at all, I just think copies are something you should keep to yourself and do for training. I am pro copying and use of reference, just credit the original artist and show the image where you copied from so people can help you improve. Just do not go out into the world saying it's yours.