And what about Twilight? Didn't a whole bunch of spin off vampire shows come from that - but they weren't the same - so were they copied? Or were they inspired by?
The lines are blurred........ very blurred. Earlier this year Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke were found liable for copyright infringement for the song Blurred Lines. They were ordered to pay over US$7 million to the children of Marvin Gaye for supposedly coping the singers 1977 hit, Got to Give it Up.
Interestingly though, the two songs had little in common vocally or musically but the production styles were similar. The two songs had the same feel and ambience though Pharrel claimed he did not have that song in his mind when he recorded Blurred Lines, it was a comparison that was made later during the promotion of the song. During a publicity interview Pharrell said the following:
“I must have been channelling that feeling, that late 70s feeling. Sometimes when you look back on your past work, you see echoes of people.”
And even though Le Petite Mania hates the song Blurred Lines we do however think that (as maybe some form of bad karma for making such a shitty, stupid, sexist asshole song) Pharrell and Thicke have been treated unfairly in this instance.
So what does this mean? Do not copy people's work but also don't make work that's similar? Does this mean we have to shield our eyes from everything that inspires us? If you're a film maker: don't watch movies. If you're a musician don't listen to music. If you're a writer don't read books. All for fear that you may be inspired and 'copy' someone's work. To be an artist in the day and age, one must live in a cave!
And what if you don't know it's been done before? What if, from your cosy artists' cave, you think up an idea that's been done before? I mean it wouldn't be exactly the same, as that's damn near impossible, but if it has the same feel thats bad enough! Even living in a cave is not the answer!
As Pharrel said in an interview with the Financial Times this ruling could have crippling effects on all creative people:
“The verdict handicaps any creator out there who is making something that might be inspired by something else. This applies to fashion, music, design … anything. If we lose our freedom to be inspired, we’re going to look up one day and the entertainment industry as we know it will be frozen in litigation. This is about protecting the intellectual rights of people who have ideas.”
He added: “Everything that’s around you in a room was inspired by something or someone. If you kill that, there’s no creativity.”
The classic line "Monkey see. Monkey do." pretty much sums up human behaviour. Are your kids copying you when they learn to talk? Should we say "No! Don't copy me by saying all those words - say them in a different way." Hey! Maybe that's where accents came from!
Referencing at University starts a whole different ball game. "BUT EVERYTHING I WANT TO SAY HAS ALREADY BEEN SAID," you shout at your computer at 4am while you're possibly still drunk from the five nights of previous partying.
What about those people who are learning to paint? I think they are called artists. They copy all the great masters before they are allowed to do anything on their own. Are they plagarists?
There was also this one time when Lisette made up a brand new drink. It was Coca Cola mixed with Lemon. Coke stole that idea from her. She got no compensation. None!
My grandma also invented Just Juice bubbles and no one gave her a dime.
That's how fashions come about and new words and that lovely statement "Alluding to....."
Recently Natalia Kills and Willy Moon were in the limelight after publicly slamming a contestant on X Factor New Zealand. Joe Irvine, who dressed in a snappy suit for one of his live performances was verbally assaulted for supposedly coping the style of retro-esque crooner Willy Moon, who was also a judge on the show. His wife and fellow judge Natalia Kills referred to Joe as a laughing stock and claimed she was embarrassed to be in the same room as him. All because the boy wore a suit and brill creamed his hair. Who knew Willy Moon had put a copyright on the two?
After the two judges were fired from the show, it emerged that Kills had spied an "Image Board' backstage that displayed pictures to inspire a look for Joe's 1950's song. On the board were pictures of well known celebrities, including: Frank Sinatra, David Beckham, and Willy Moon!
So you see, the lines are very blurred. I'm scared now though, I can't go out for fear of copying. My line of defence will simply be "I only meant to be inspired by...."