I've added this question to the original question:
What about copying the frontend – so you just have the exact same look and graphical elements as the site being cloned, and then build the functionality behind that?
Is that possible?
(I understand of course there are copyright issues. It's just an academic question.)
Original question follows:
I see there are people who clone sites on fiverr.
Do they access all the code and replicate it so it functions and looks precisely the same – a precise copy of the code?
Or do they copy not so precisely and make a bit of a mess?
Or does it depend on the type of site?
If so, what things does it depend on?
For a non-technical brain what does it depend on?
For example, let's say there's a listing site. People can submit listings with tags, the owner of the site can edit and approve them to appear on the site: would the code that enables that functionality be copyable by a cloner?