We are international citizens of the world and having had this experience we know that copyright can be very loosely interpreted from country to country. There are knock-off CDs, DVDs, even names of restaurants and other businesses. When I lived in China I saw a restaurant named “Zizzler” which is an off shoot of the name “Sizzler” in America. Although we can claim they stole the name, or at least the idea of the name, is that really copyright? After all Zizzler is not actually Sizzler.
International teachers often use knock-off DVDs for instructional purposes in the classroom and many I would guess say this to the kids and laugh about it. What harm is that? I mean the kids know exactly what the teacher is talking about and buy them for themselves as well and think nothing of it. Yet we tell the kids they cannot plagiarize and must give credit for the resources they use when writing a paper, creating a PPT, or video presentation. So how do we teach copyright in countries where international copyright law is not often followed? We teach what we know and if in doubt always give credit. I say this because, in our case, we work at an American school and therefore, I feel, are responsible for following and teaching American copyright laws and procedures in our educational setting.
Where creativity is concerned when we think of works of art be it visual or performing arts I believe we have the responsibility to teach the kids to mention where they got their inspiration if the piece is so close to the original. For example the piece of art the student did of Obama with Arabic writing that is hanging in the main office area. That student, in my opinion, should make of mention that he was inspired by the HOPE picture by Shepard Fairey. There is no way that the student had not previously see that piece of art.
In the case of Dorothy Lewis from the article “Something Borrowed” by Malcom Gladwell in which her character was portrayed, in the play “Frozen” in a way she was not comfortable with and so close to her own experiences as written in her book(s) and various articles she, in my opinion, has every right to sue. It is defamation of character. The author of the play, Bryony Lavery, that was produced, in this case, claimed she thought it was news but I find that a really, really lame excuse. The play write took liberties with Ms. Lewis’s professional and personal experiences which is NOT creative but defamatory. If Bryony Lavery had given credit or asked permission, as she should have and did with Marian Parington. This story would make a good debate in a literature class even at the high school level.
This question has many layers and each layer has opinions. I have shared a few of mine.