Monday, February 23, 2009

Sound Familiar?


Here's what I think is cool, the producer has edited the info on youtube regarding this spot. Here's what he has to say:

I will only take credit for Editing this piece. The concept, direction and creative... came 'directly from the top'.
The voice over track was sent to me, attached with a sample spot.. from another market. My role was to simply edit this.

You know what? I respect that. I invite you to check out the producer's other work - because its good. Thanks for clearing it up and I apologize personally if I offended.


Listen to this spot from WOFL... then listen to the copy from the 1st WFAA spot below.

Now I don't mean to be a jerk here -- but isn't that stealing? Maybe they got permission - who knows.

I'll admit - I've borrowed some production techniques from the WFAA piece - but have never taken an entire script and redone it.

Thoughts? If the copy wasn't EXACT... it would be one thing...


Anonymous said...

Not sure I have a huge problem with it. Yes I can see the folks at WFAA (or should I say Hothaus)might be mad that there idea was swiped but lets face it there is a lot of pressure on everyone now to produce great spots fast and if your audience has not seen a promo from Texas why not. Now having said that I might not copy word for word but taking the idea I am totally fine with. Let work together in hard times. By the way feel free to steal my stuff because after all it's the highest form of flattery.

Anonymous said...

Before taking pot shots at your former competitor, you should find out the facts.
Did hothaus produce both? Maybe the CSDs know each other, talked and gave permission. The options go on...
I would have taken you one phone call before attacking.


Who am I, the Hardy Boys?

I'm not going to investigate whether this spot was stolen or not.

I said in my post they may have gotten permission... my guess "anonymous" is you know the answer.

One thing I can tell you - no way Hothaus produced the WOFL spot. It was nicely put together - but not THAT nice.

Incidentely, I do think some of WOFL's spots are well done - I have no beef with my former competitor. This one just raised my eyebrows.


I've had spots stolen from me and frankly - it doesn't bother me much. The first poster is right - imitation is the highest form of flattery.

I just know that these spots tend to end up on producer's reels. That's wrong.

I'm not accusing WOFL of that -- just saying in broad terms -- some people do this and get jobs because of someone else's hard work. I've seen it happen.

I guess I was surprised by this one - because its clear from the other videos that this producer is very talented.

Huss said...

I have no problem with this in theory, and within a corporate group I would encourage it. We do it, and it's been nothing but beneficial, as it helps to raise the quality bar.

Now, using direct rip-offs for "personal gain" is kind fo a tricky issue. We swiped the "political ad breaks" that WCCO did almost verbaitum, though we used our own video, audio etc., but I'm not sure I would submit them for an award as it wasn't completely our idea.

Anonymous said...

I think it's interesting to compare the announcer reads and choice of music for both spots--WFAA's is much better.
There's nothing inherently wrong with two markets using the same creative to promote news, assuming it's a successful campaign/spot. You can buy syndicated spots from vendors that have played in many markets--check out the 'There's that news van' campaign for the ABC O&O's for example. I would be a little ashamed to have ripped off a spot word for word without asking. While I like the production of both spots, the copy/creative doesn't inspire me to rip it off, or as a viewer, watch.
Paul Greeley

Anonymous said...

You don't have to be one of the Hardy Boys...but you seem just fine being Judge Joe Brown. You strongly implied it was "stolen." Not fair to the WOFL team if you don't know the facts.

I agree with Huss...our corp. often sends around spots that work for other stations to use. What makes it nice is that the bigger stations will often rework the logos and graphics for some of the smaller, less equipped stations.

Jason said...

Is it just me...?

But why would anyone want to steal copy from that spot?

Nice production value, but that's it.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Jason...if you're going to steal a spot - why that one??? Maybe they are in the same corporate group?


I was not trying to offend. I do know for a fact that Belo does not own WOFL - so there is no corporate synergy here.

I would love to hear the real story from the producer. I have no axe to grind.

I'm just saying if the producer did in fact take WFAA's spot and copy it - I don't think that's cool. Especially when you put it online with your name attached as if it was your work.

Corporate synergy is a great thing. I'm not convinced they didn't get permission or have some sort of arrangement -- but so far, the people most offended by my comments are posting as Anonymous.

If someone wants to clear the air here - go for it. Otherwise, it seems like I may be right -- this spot was stolen.

Paul said...

I was always more of a Judge Wapner fan.

This is just a blog...right?

Anonymous said...

I think imitation is flattery; I've had spots of mine that were copied after I put them on a share reel. I've even had stations call my station (both in and out of our group) asking for elements, etc. So I don't get too bent out of shape by copying or borrowing. The original spot is usually best. However, I understand Don's frustration. I personally have gotten several tapes from applicants who have duplicated, nearly word for word, shot for shot, very well known promos that were part of Promax presentations and all over the web. If an idea can be successful in another market, go ahead and steel it. But when you put it on your reel for consideration when applying for a new job, that's stupid. When I get a tape full of copied spots I have to assume the producer does generate original ideas and must think I live in a cave.

Dave Muscari said...

Plagiarism is the sincerest form of television, that's for sure.

I work at WFAA and have for years. Jon Fox at Hothaus is a terrific designer and a wonderful friend, however let me assure you that while they may work on spots with the creative services department at WFAA, the spots are generated by the people inside the station. These are WFAA spots -- end of story.

As for the idea of ripping off other people's creative, it's certainly nothing new. However, wouldn't it be refreshing to see more original creative?

Thank you for posting these spots, and for showcasing the work of so many fine producers. I believe WFAA's creative to be the best, but then again -- what do I know?

I appreciate the opportunity to set the record straight -- WFAA's creative is WFAA's -- not Hothaus or any other company.