Tag Archives: if i was a master thief

Plagiarism? I’ve heard that one before – Telegraph

20 Jan

More on one of our favorite topics from Christopher Howse in The Telegraph (found at Expectingrain):

So Bob Dylan stood out from his contemporaries as a song-writer because he stole more boldly and with more imagination. He had hardly heard someone sing Scarborough Fair when he cannibalised it for Girl from the North Country, apparently mistaking the word fair for an adjective. As a privateer of song, no wonder Captain Kidd the pirate was his hero. They both spotted other people’s treasure and brought it home as their own.

That’s the faculty teenagers lack when they copy over chunks of the internet into their homework. The crime is lack of discrimination.

via Plagiarism? I’ve heard that one before – Telegraph.

More on this topic here.

Johanna Blakley: Lessons from fashion’s free culture

25 May

The culture of copying: “What is the kind of ownership model in a digital world that’s gonna lead to the most innovation?”

from the talk:

The Virtues of Copying

Democratization of Fashion

Faster Establishment of Global Trends

Induced Obsolescence

Acceleration in Creative Innovation

For more, see readytoshare.org

This has been a big issue on Imaginary Boundaries, starting with Bob Dylan and plagiarism plus related posts.

After the jump, Lawrence Lessig on “laws that choke creativity”:

Continue reading

More Master Thieves: Mozart, Shakespeare, and Arthur Laurents

16 Sep

Romeo, he said to Juliet, “You got a poor complexion.

It doesn’t give your appearance a very youthful touch!”

Juliet said back to Romeo, “Why don’t you just shove off

If it bothers you so much.”

Bob Dylan

When this blog began, we looked at plagiarism issues in the three part series If I Was a Master Thief Perhaps I’d Rob Them, which explored Bob Dylan and the role of appropriation in the creative process (and which also explored what this might teach us about writing and teaching writing). Here is some more on the issue, beginning with the “stolen” West Side Story:

First we have some interesting thoughts on plagiarism from Matthew Yglesias who is responding to Mark Helprin’s Digital Barbarism: A Writer’s Manifesto:

To me, and I think to most people, it’s a good thing that the authors of West Side Story were able to put their work together without constantly looking over their shoulder at whether or not things were getting too close to Romeo & Juliet or needing to somehow deny that that’s what they were doing. The fact that the work is more-or-less explicitly a retelling of an already classic cultural landmark gives it a kind of additional resonance.

And here’s kos expanding on what Yglesias said while responding to a Helprin quote.

Helprin: Continue reading

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