Instead of researching a normal plagiarism case I decided to read about one for song writing. I never really thought that this happened. But I can see how easy it would be to do. I always have a catchy tune stuck in my head and copying it would be fairly simple. I read about a case in 1976 where George Harrison’s song “My Sweet Lord” was said to be copied from the Chiffon’s song “He’s so Fine”. Unlike “He’s so Fine”, George’s song hit the charts making it the number one song for five weeks and later in 2002 it came back and remained in number one for a week. Overall the song was very successful and was on the charts for a total of 27 weeks. Because of the similar tune they filed a lawsuit against it. It didn’t go to court for around four years, they wanted to settle it outside of court but couldn’t find common ground to agree on. The accusing side wanted $148,000.00 and 75% of royalties made on the song. They declined the offer which later lead to it going to court. When the judge heard it he quickly decided they were identical. George was fined with “subconscious plagiarism” and had to pay $587,000.00. The full amount was later paid in 1981 and the judgement was dismissed.

Even cases like this should be looked at carefully. Just like when you hear a catchy song, when you read something that sounds good it can stick in your mind. Which then makes it easy to rewrite the same idea later and take it for your own. An easy mistake that can obviously cost you a lot of time and money.


4 thoughts on “Plagiarism

  1. I like that you decided to research a plagiarism case that was outside of the typical realm of writing. I think that plagiarism in music is quite fascinating because sometimes that catchy tune just gets stuck in your head and you just sort of forget where it came from…


  2. I also looked at a lot of cases where there were plagiarized songs. I found them to be very interesting, especially when you can hear them played back to back. I also think that music is a hard topic to come to a conclusion on whether or not the song has been plagiarized if they just sound similar. I think that you make a good point on easy mistakes though. How can we really know if our “idea” is actually an original thought, we have to be extra careful to make sure that we are not taking credit for something someone else already produced.


  3. I thought that this was interesting because when i think of plagiarism i don’t think of music. if someone was really trying to plagiarize music it shows their lack of care for the art of music and shows that they only create music for wrong reasons such as fame.


  4. I think it is really easy to plagiarize songs because there are so many different songs lyrics. But if you intentionally steal others lyrics than you deserve to get punished. George got what he deserved.


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