Da Vinci code author, Dan Brown, being sued
Feb 28, 2006 at 6:02 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 16

mr_baseball_08

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Hey guys and girl(s), I just saw this link on MSN and thought I'd post it and get everyone's thoughts. Firstly, has anyone here read both books to know what's going on? And if so, do you believe the lawsuit is justified? And what do you think will come of it?

The Link

I have read both books, but I don't think Dan Brown has stolen any of their work. Can you sue someone for writing about similar ideas??

Oh yeah, last but not least, try to keep this on topic guys. Head-fi forbids religious discussion so try to keep this discussion about the two books and the lawsuit. Thanks!

JD
 
Feb 28, 2006 at 6:12 PM Post #2 of 16

SennFan

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Thanks for the tip on religious discussion ban...otherwise I would've gotten myself into trouble
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The authors who wrote about the Knights Templar, Priory of Scion etc were essentially considered the Scully and Moulder's for lack of a better analogy of the Church. As soon as the topic became popularized by Dan Brown their work became vindicated in a way and its easy to see how they feel had.
 
Feb 28, 2006 at 6:27 PM Post #3 of 16

Febs

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I've read both. There's no doubt that Brown was influenced by the theory presented in Holy Blood, Holy Grail.

In the United States, an idea is not subject to copyright protection, but the expression of an idea is. Since the earlier work was presented as a historical fact (or at least, a theory about what may have been historical fact), the mere fact that Brown has used that idea as a plot device in a work of fiction shouldn't give rise to liability. What the case will turn on is whether Brown copied the actual text of the earlier work.
 
Feb 28, 2006 at 11:37 PM Post #4 of 16

mr_baseball_08

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Well, there's no doubt he was definitely influenced by their book. But I don't see how they can nail him down (no pun intended) without him actually quoting some of their texts and not giving them credit.

But then again, I'm not a lawyer, nor in law school, so I don't know about the legality side of things..

JD
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 12:21 AM Post #7 of 16

saint.panda

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Some of the theories that Dan Brown might have "stolen" are so old, you'd need to go back a couple of millenia. I was even taught in religion class (mandatory in Germany) that some dubious theories claim that Jesus might have been married to Magdalena (a prostitute some say). I better get my teacher a good lawyer. Ok, he didn't come up with the idea of Jesus and her having a child together but I'm sure somebody over the last 2000 years must have thought of that. You might win such a trial on the basis of Harry Potter wonderland but certainly not if we're talking about the foundation of most of Western civilization. Those people aren't just greedy for attention and money but also very stupid.
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 1:22 AM Post #8 of 16

chadbang

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I used to write screenplays, so I'm fairly familiar with copyright libel. Hollywood is all about "stealing" and every writer there tends to be a little paranoid. But it's actually a very difficult thing to prove in court. Ask Art Buchwald and Eddie Murphy. Unless, as someone said, they can point to specific passages in the text where it plagarism is clear, you can't win a suit based on someone having the same "idea" as you. A classic story is the writer who walks into a producer's office. Tells the producer his million dollar idea and the producer says "That's an amazing idea. Funny thing is, I had just the same idea myself in the shower this morning!" Well, the producer could take that idea to another writer, whose treatment of the story or whose text wouldn't resemble the original writer's unseen script, and the producer could get away with it. out. Frequently ideas float around hollywood simultaneously, and a string of volcano/asteroid movies will come out. We'll, that's because people have cribbed an idea, but different scripts come out and no one seems to holler - cause they can't.


PS. Damn, I never read "The Da Vinci code" (i've been saving up to do its sometime., but now I guess I don't have to after reading that damn news article. JESUS SPOILER ALERT (for the literarily deprived, anyway ).
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But I did notice in the article that certain "phrases" and descriptions so similarities. That could mean trouble for the author.
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 1:53 AM Post #9 of 16

chadbang

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Hm, fueled by this thread I just read a book excerpt at Dan Brown's website. Boy, the guy's not much of a writer, is he? It must be a good story because his prose is pure pot-boiler tripe.
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 2:36 AM Post #10 of 16

tennisets

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Quote:

Originally Posted by chadbang
Hm, fueled by this thread I just read a book excerpt at Dan Brown's website. Boy, the guy's not much of a writer, is he? It must be a good story because his prose is pure pot-boiler tripe.


Yeah, read it for the story, not for the writing. The writing is average at best, but the story really pulls you in. Also, Dan Brown's first book featuring the same character that's in "The Da Vinci Code" is also really good. I read "The Da Vinci Code" first, but I think I'd advise reading them in order. It doesn't really matter, but it's nice to know what the references to the previous book's story are talking about. I wondered what the character had done in the first book most of the time I was reading the second. The first one is called "Devils and Angels", I think.
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 12:16 PM Post #11 of 16

plainsong

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It took my husband ages to read the DaVinci code. He started, got bored, and then went to a bunch of Stephen King stuff instead.

He finally finished the book, but it was painful to the eyes after reading King.

His conclusion was also... story good, writing baaaaaad, made to be worse by coming from better written stories.

Also, what's so new in these ideas? Can the other authors really prove that no one else ever wrote on this subject?
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 2:27 PM Post #12 of 16

NaOH

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Quote:

Originally Posted by plainsong
It took my husband ages to read the DaVinci code. He started, got bored, and then went to a bunch of Stephen King stuff instead.

He finally finished the book, but it was painful to the eyes after reading King.

His conclusion was also... story good, writing baaaaaad, made to be worse by coming from better written stories.

Also, what's so new in these ideas? Can the other authors really prove that no one else ever wrote on this subject?



I can relate to this. I came from the Dark Tower (THE DARK ****ING TOWER) to Brown's menhess, and I almost couldn't handle it. Of course, I was bitterly disappointed that there was no more DT, so that might have contributed...
 
Mar 1, 2006 at 4:04 PM Post #13 of 16

mr_baseball_08

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Yeah, I thought as well his writing was pretty ho-hum.. Even cliche, really.. All his techniques were very unoriginal. BUT! He did put together a pretty neat story.. In which he included some clever twists and turns. But if you read any of his other stuff it's almost the same stuff over and over again. I think the reason he did so well with the general public is because his writing style is so simplistic anyone between the ages of 8 and 149 can book up the book, read it, and understand it pretty well...
 
Mar 2, 2006 at 12:14 AM Post #14 of 16

taylor

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I thought the book was decent. The story was exciting, and it did for your average adult what Harry Potter did for your average kid - made books 'accessable' and 'entertaining', not just 'those things nerds read while we watch tv'

Of course, after reading it, Head-Fi reccomended I read 'Foucault's Pendelum' by Umberto Eco if I liked the Da Vinci code... now THAT was a shock, going from simple writing for joe six pack to an incrediably complex and difficult book translated from Italian that required a PhD in English and a PhD in Religion to read... seriously, I had to renew it like four times to finish it. In the beginning I was reading my dictionary to look up the words used in the book more than I was reading the book itself.
 

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