Skip to main content

Some years ago, my pal Jonathan Coulton (I love being able to put those four words together) did a magnificent cover of Sir Mix-A-Lot's "Baby Got Back".  The arrangement is... distinctive, especially contrasted with the original song.

Apparently, next Thursday, JoCo's exact same arrangement will show up in an episode of Glee.

Also apparently, they didn't ask JoCo.

This has been picked up by, oh, a few online news services:

(thanks to Janice, in comments at JoCo's page, for the list.)

Obviously, JoCo doesn't own the song -- but he does own the arrangement and the new melody, and that ownership is subject to protection by copyright.  If it were, oh, I don't know, me doing JoCo's version, and selling it for download or putting it on a CD, I'd, y'know, ask first, because JoCo's version has been in the wild for several years and it's pretty well known in geek circles, and because it's The Thing To Do.  At the absolute minimum, I'd mention the guy.

This is going on frickin' Glee.  Worldwide TV.  CDs.  DVDs.  Karaoke games.  It'd be nice to make sure the guy who came up with that arrangement and melody got some notoriety from it.

Not to mention cash.  This is Fox, after all.

On top of that, Glee is usually better about this -- witness when they got 2Cellos to come on the show to play their gone-viral cover of "Smooth Criminal".

So.  Big frustration.  Don't know how it's going to shake out yet, but I would suspect legal action, a very quick credit change, and a reasonably large check.

But only because JoCo is quite prominent on the Internet.

Less-well-known artists -- like me -- haven't got a lot of defense against this sort of thing.  We have fewer people to make a big stink for us.  Heck, I wonder how many Glee cast members have even heard of JoCo.

Let's just hope that Fox doesn't steamroll over this, and that JoCo gets both the money and notoriety he deserves for it.

(Expanded and modified from the original post at Dreamwidth)

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site