I guess this end of the blogosphere now knows all about the Lavanya Mohan – Charukesh Sekar story. Poor Lavanya, down with Charukesh and Vichar Hari yada yada. I’m surprised only one person has yet accused Lavanya of having her story ‘inspired’ from this Goodness Gracious Me sketch. J’Accuse! Make that count two. And KrishAshok saar, she need not have gone back and forth in time to view a video and write her story as you said, she could have just logged on to Youtube. I’m not saying she did or she didn’t. I’m just presenting the possibility. Of course, the possibility exists that she, like Kaavya Viswanathan, can cite Cryptomnesia.
But this case does bring up the issues of credit on the Net, non-attribution, and how easy it is to plagiarize. How easy it is to pass some story off as yours. And the prospect of seeing someone else reap the fruits of your hard work if you aren’t as popular or well-connected as Lavanya is.
A week back, I was wiki’ing for the storyline of Mumbai Salsa. There’s an American actress in that movie, Linda Arsenio. Click. Turns out she’s made quite a name for herself in Bollywood. She recently starred in the movie Aloo Chaat, alongside Aftab Shivdasani, Aamna Sharif, Kulbhushan Kharbanda. Click.
And the story read oh-so-so-so-familiar!
No, it wasn’t a rich-girl-poor-boy story.
But it was the same story as I’d received in an email fwd in December 2008. And this movie released only in June 2009. And it seems pretty popular on the Net, right from 2006. Here you go, link to the story, link to the story of Aloo Chaat. Decide for yourself.
The identity of the author seems lost to the recesses of time. But whoever you are, this is to inform you that you have been plagiarized. Sue ’em for all it’s worth. Or atleast milk the publicity.
Of course, the chance is nonzero that the scriptwriter himself comes forward to say the story was originally his, and that he put it on the Internet circa 2004….