the art of copying Arashi

(Edit: I changed the title because not a few have lectured me about stirring the hornet’s nest. I guess the context and the joke in the title is lost on many who claim to be existing in a fun-filled fandom. Yes, the Arashi fandom is a fun community and I don’t want to spoil anyone’s fun but when I write about Arashi, or anything that I find interesting, I write it as a journalist and as a blogger, because that’s who I am. If you don’t like it, don’t read. Simple.)

I wanted to call this post: “Arashi is so great that others love to copy them”, but thought against it because though that is true, we don’t really have to spell it out like that to prove how great the boys are. All we need to do is take a look at how many others are copying their work to see for ourselves that the boys’ prime and enviable position in pop culture is not just limited to Japan.

Case #1: some obscure Kpop group called BiA4 wants to have their popcorn and eat it too.

 

popcorn copy

Source

 

Case #2: Tudou, a video-sharing website in China, copies Himitsu-no Arashi-chan opening billboard (OBB):

 

himitsu copy

Source

 

Case #3: another Kpop group, SHINEE, copies this from an Arashi concert:

 

concert copy

Source

And no, just because one of the members of SHINEE likes Arashi, it’s perfectly okay to copy. With regards to the logo and the OBB, those are clearly copyright violations. Concepts, however, like the one taken from the concert may fall in a grey area. The perpetrators can always cry “inspiration”.

It is very interesting that while Googling on this topic, I came across this old article about SHINEE suing a Cambodian group for copying them. Oh the irony. Perhaps they thought, heck, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. So here we are.

Sure, we can throw around cliches such as, imitation is the best form of flattery. But no one is really flattered, certainly not me, especially when it runs smack of creative laziness. POPCORN has just been released so it’s obviously fresh on many people’s minds, thus, this filching makes it more blatant it’s almost an insult. HnA may no longer be airing but the rights belong to TBS, so I’m waiting for the network to cry foul knowing how the Japanese can be touchy about these matters. And did I say, video-sharing website in China? This could be interesting. Lastly, Arashi works so hard to make their concerts memorable and enjoyable for their fans. It may be flattering at the onset to consider that other groups are copying them, but at the end of the day, it is still cheating.

Do these people actually think they can get away with things like this? Seriously? In this day and age of Twitter, Weibo and Facebook? Do they live in a cage? At the end of the day, who are they shortchanging and fooling? Where’s your pride guys?

Nothing beats the original. That is all.

P.S.

I just have to add this. If this copying was committed by a Japanese artist to a Korean artist, hell will break loose and the Korean media will even join in the fray, dragging some nationalistic tone while they’re at it. Remember the non-invitation of any Kpop artist at Kohaku, a wholly Japanese show, complaining as if the Koreans had a stake on NHK? The same thing if it’s a Japanese artist copying a Chinese artist, all hell will break loose on Weibo. The Japanese, for all their strict policies about copyright and all, sure have poor social media networking. And as a fan of a Jpop group, I feel compelled to help point this out, as others did. Because I am proud of Arashi’s work and while all these copying make other people know more about them, I also feel it’s a disservice to Arashi’s tears, sweat and blood over the years to get to where they are. Others should work as hard and not just conveniently resort to copying and hang on to the coattails of somebody else’s hard work.

And lastly, I didn’t want to turn this into a Kpop vs Jpop vs Cpop, but given the characters involved in the issue, it can’t be helped. Bottomline is, whatever pop genre it is or whichever artist is involved, cheating is wrong. We are taught that as early as pre-school.

Copyright © theasianpopculturist. Blogging since 2001. All rights reserved.

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33 thoughts on “the art of copying Arashi

  1. I wouldn’t say that the idols themselves are aware that they are copying anything, it could be the producers or managers I don’t know, but if you’re going to make a post about this, at least spell the offending groups’ names right: it’s B1A4, not BiA4. I’ll ignore the ‘obscure’ bit (coz it’s true they’re low key compared to other Kpop groups). That’s basically all I wanted to say lol ^_^ cheers!

      • Don’t really know, since it’s K-pop, an just not interested in them XDD. But, I saw it in tumblr, n twitter too. Some k-pop group was wearing the popcorn head!!! Outrageous!!! As I said it, at least wait for a bit until Popcorn tour finish its fever ne. *shaking head* Maybe it’s the staffs, another proof of how uncreative n lzy they are to find some creativeness to put into their own shows/perf/live/con/whatvere.

    • I thinks it’s K.will.. I saw him on musicbank? when my sisters were watching them…went beserk by myself n nobody’s care~! but it was really a popcorn head!! it was so obvious n crying copycat!!!

      • Well, those who like kpop,probably, just turned a blind eyes *shakes head*. Just wish thhey would truthfully say, yes they’re wrong, not looking for excuses n justice-ment.

  2. the color code, do they really been using the same colors since beginning? or just recently? (then, another HUGE copy-catting!!).

  3. This is so shameful, It’s bad enough if they don’t come up with all the concepts-especially the ones from concerts- but they come up with most of their stuff and it’s infuriating! I know creativity can be taken from various places, but to blatantly copy outright? THAT IS DISGRACEFUL. I shudder at the thought of them calling themselves ‘Artists’ when they think it’s okay to just take things from others without credit or permission!

  4. Shinee´c colours are the same as Arashi .. just check some pics and you will see they used the same colours for a long time .. for this Shinee pic .. never saw it before?? is it an official pic or a fanart?? don´t know since the text under the pics seems to be in spanish or another language (can only read the “familia” word the rest is so unclear) .. for B1A4 this one is so old and alot of people bashed because of this pic .. (B1A4 the whole Group likes Arashi) .. I didn´t mind them using the Popcorn maker Stand (the only thing was that they should have used another typo) but there´s no Patent to use popcorn or whatever (even°C-ute used Popcorn for the pic of the 7th Album) .. and for mentioned K.Will .. he got this Head from another Artist after he won on Musicbank (since it was conected to the lyrics) .. (and for Shinee (better the Company) sue against the other Group was because of the same Song and Dance) .. I don´t know if Arashi put a copyright thing on the Popcorn stuff (but I don´t think so) .. everybody can use it .. and for me I´m proud that others get Ideas from Arashi (like Arashi get Ideas from visting other places like New York shows) .. instead of bashing about something little like this esp since it´s really helpfull for promoting Arashi I just sit back and relax and enjoy it since it´s proof for me that Arashi is so extrem famous that even Kpop Artists like to use some of the ideas 😄 (in the End it only shows that they must watch Arashi really often) XDD ahh and for the tuodu Vid .. can´t say anything about it .. don´t even know what it is about since i don´t find a Video link .. (seems like all Arashi related stuff was unchanged .. perhaps it´s a Vid for a Arashi Channel on Tudou??? really don´t know what to say … but I like the Arashi Fandom because it´s calm and until know alot of my friends and I only were happy when seeing things like this .. bashing is for Kpop Fandom .. donßt bring it here … it´s tiresome like hell ..

    • you’re welcome to my blog.

      as you noticed, this is not a blog solely on Arashi so don’t go saying I’m bringing it to the fandom because I didn’t even post it elsewhere. as I have mentioned on Twitter, I speak my mind. you don’t have to agree with me or what I blog about. don’t read, there’s the X button. simple.

      cheers.

  5. I remember too some time ago, my sister was watching Super Junior for the heck of it and we noticed how one of the songs has a PV and choreography strikingly similar to Arashi’s Jidai.

  6. Forgot to add this earlier as I was full of FEELS haha — I can accept the shinee one since it’s not really entirely unique to Arashi but the popcorn logo- just no.

  7. I remembered Super JUnior’s interview last 2 years ago that boiled our blood, proclaiming they are the first ones who did the moving stage on concerts. And me and my friends we’re like counting the years between Arashi started it on concerts before Suju become popular.

  8. wow, the font in B1A4′ and Shinee’s pose are similar to Arashi’s

  9. All this copies thing..only show us how amazing and great Arashi is, right. Stay calm. If things getting serious..I’m sure johnny-san know what to do. Isn’t this one of the reason why Johnny’s getting so strict about uploading his artists PVs in youtube.!? Coz he knew..someone might copy them.

  10. hate all you want but in the end nobody cares whether kpop stole some of arashi’s concepts. most people love kpop no one gives a fuck about arashi i even doubt people know them. arashi is only famous in Japan and some parts of Asia. get lost.

    • I am approving this comment to show why I can’t take Kpop fans seriously. And next time, be careful with your words because Japan happens to be your Korean idols’ milking cow, you dimwit. If they stay in Korea alone, they’d die of hunger that’s why they need to market aggressively to other countries so they can survive in the cut-throat world of entertainment. Your comment just shows what a clueless idiot you are.

      Don’t think I can’t see your personal details in my blog. Don’t hide using pseudonyms.

    • oh and by the way, here’s your personal data. so you’re Indonesian? pity, I know a lot of level-headed Indonesians.

      139.192.190.104 – Geo Information
      IP Address 139.192.190.104
      Host 139.192.190.104
      Location ID ID, Indonesia
      City Jakarta, 04 –
      Organization PT. First Media, Tbk.
      ISP PT. First Media,Tbk
      AS Number AS23700 PT. Broadband Multimedia, Tbk
      Latitude 6°17’44” South
      Longitude 106°82’94” East
      Distance 9945.54 km (6179.87 miles)

    • I’m indonesian too sorry for that comment up there..*bow*

      But hey see the good thing..even she as a kpop fan not saying that kpop not stealing arashi’s concept..they just told us to keep silent..that means she can see it too..right?

      Look dear LOLZ..I know maybe its a “normal” thing to steal other people idea in our country but please don’t bring it to the world..and don’t start to make another fanwar..^_^..I have a lot kpop fans friends and we respect each other..why can’t you??..

      • hey riikushi, don’t apologize for someone else’s rudeness. I have a lot of Indonesian friends too 🙂

        “get lost” – I actually find her parting comment funny because this ain’t her blog and if there’s anyone who should get lost, it’s her. ah well LOLZ indeed.

    • Then why are u here? Reading this here?? As u can (if u can) read, this is abt Arashi, a Jpop group!
      Get lost? We? We’re here to discuss the dimwit un-creative mind of those working behind the kpop groups, which copied our Jpop group’s idea!
      You get losT!
      Just accept it. And be quiet. Or give us some reasonable counter-measure to discuss too.

      Hey, Arashi is indeed famous only in Japan n some parts of Asia.
      BUT, they are long-lasting! And will go even further ahead! Their album went to World Chart!

  11. hello… i’m indonesian too ^^

    i’m sorry of the last comment by stupid-idiot-baka kpop fans from my country… maybe that person didn’t have brain ^^;

    just info, not all of kpop fans in indonesia like that…. so i hope you don’t think indonesian is worst fans…. ^^

    thank you ^^

    • Agis: thanks for the comment and while it’s easy to generalize, I do know many Indonesians who are friendly and reasonable. One bad apple doesn’t necessarily make a whole orchard of bad apples 😉

      • Un..you right..but when I see her from indonesia it just feel like “what a shame”.. -____-“..

        Do they not learn how to write in good manner in their school??..or it just their personality??..
        And I wonder if she only have few friends or even she don’t have a friend at all..since she write arashi only famous in japan..
        While in fact there are soo many arashi fans here..

        This kind of person that sometimes brings our peace fandom to a war with another fandom..*sigh*

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