Monday, 20 February 2012

Should Ancient Artefacts be Trademarked?

Hello my lovely little followers (and welcome to some new ones hiding in the corner, I can see you :o) )
Hope you're all feeling fine and dandy this beautiful rainy morning (as you can see I'm trying to see the glass half full :o)

I thought I would show you this beautiful work of art and see how you feel about Trademarking ancient 'stuff'.
A few years ago I was reading about the Nebra Sky Disk, shown above, and as it is such an attractive artifact I thought I would revisit it (if you google it, you will find loads of info so I won't bore you all with it here ;o)).
I was quite saddened to discover that the disk has now been trademarked (!)(?)
Apparently the state of Saxony-Anhalt has registered the disk as a trademark and have successfully sued people who make copies.

Now I am all for copyright protection, and as an artist I fully agree that work needs protecting but this is a work of art made in the Bronze Age...and unless I'm not quite right with my maths...the owners of the work should have been dead a good few years.

I believe that the problems arose when souvenirs were being made, which may account for the idea of trademarking in the first place, and to a certain extent, I agree that the 'owners' should be allowed to make 'trinkets' themselves without too much competition...but...
If an item like this can be trademarked, then what else is or can be?

The Sky Disk was itself, in use for around 400 years, with people adding and changing things on it, before it was buried.
(There is also controversy about it being a fake as it is so unique.)
The people, who over these 400 years used it, belonged to a time so different from our own, they worshipped nature and used their knowledge of the sky to create works of beauty as an aid in their work.
How sad then, that someone now, could take their work and trademark very un-natural.

I suppose, if this is how trademarks work, (I'm not an expert, so don't quote me), this would mean that... any re-enactors would not be able to make a replica for their...(whatever they do?).
Potters would not be able to make a clay version?
Metal workers could not make one.
Jewellers...nope sorry.
Glass, sorry.
Cake makers?
Thinking about it...the list is endless...that is so sad.

Shouldn't this sort of treasure belong to all of us?
Shouldn't we all be able to be inspired by it? 
And if someone had the talent to create a copy of an ancient artifact for others to share (even if they ate it), shouldn't they be allowed to do that?
After all, we will know that we aren't buying the original, so it isn't as if we were being conned by a fake...and as there is no other way for us mere mortals to have anything like the original, why can't we have a copy?
Oh well...that's modern living for you...

I wonder if Stonehenge has been trademarked yet...or The Sphinx...or...? ;o)


Mother Moon said...

it is a beautiful piece... just like man to think that they have dibs on something more than another one.... I totally agree with you that it is foolish to trademark such an ancient item... yet more than likely it was somehow getting into the pockets of whoever did trademark it.. In the end it is usually about money... sad it is... but alas greed is a strong thing..

Great to hear from you by the way Cee.. been so long.. hope all is well in your little corner of the world... miss your cheery and other ways... take care...

OmaLindasOldeBaggsandStuftShirts said...

oh my gods and goddesses....really? but then why am I surprised? this is just a load of it, isn't it?

and to hear from you in this forum about this subject leads me to believe that it bothers you more than just a tiny bit.

egads. The Olde Bagg

Oberon's Wood said...

Janie, you are so right, it is just like man...nice to see you too!

Lindy, yes really! Have a look on wiki wotsit