In both the Winchester thread and the Firefly thread, there have been discussions on what Lego will and will not produce. As this isn't much relevant to the actual model being represented on the Cuusoo site, I have decided to create my own thread regarding the issues.
Firstly, I bring us an important announcement from Lego on their Cuusoo page: Brand Standards.
In this announcement, they clearly state what they will not produce; they are as follows-
- Politics and political symbols
- Religious references including symbols, buildings, or people
- Sex, drugs, or smoking
- Alcohol in any present day situation
- Death, killing, blood, terrorism, or torture
- First-person shooter video games
- Warfare or war vehicles in any situation post-WWII to present
- Racism, bullying, or cruelty to real life animals
It has come up in the aforementioned threads that this seems to contradict Lego's current and past lines, such as, but not limited to, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Lord of the Rings.
Starting off our discussion I am replying to another forum member who shall be invited to join in.
As I've said previously to you, I didn't feel it was the place to discuss other themes. Here I feel we can do it freely without overtaking the discussion of the actual Firefly model.
I do not work for Lego, and my joining had nothing to do with Cuusoo, nor discussing Lego's standards; it was purely happenstance. People are able to have opinions that are shared with those you don't agree with. I agree that Lego has made some mistakes in the past, but I firmly believe that this is far from a mistake or hipocrasy on their part.
They've never produced a Geisha. It was a "Kimono Girl." A kimono has nothing to do with sex, drugs, or rock & roll. Your interpretation doesn't match Lego's:
"Hello, everyone / I am the Kimono Girl / This is my haiku."
"The Kimono Girl has the deepest respect for tradition. She has studied hard to learn exactly the way her traditional kimono robe should be worn, how her traditional makeup must be applied, and even just the right angle for holding her traditional folding fan. The Kimono Girl’s most favorite tradition of all is haiku poetry. She writes haiku verses about everything that she sees and does during the day. She’s gotten so good at it that she can have entire conversations in lines of 5, 7 and 5 syllables!"
There is no double standard, and I never said it wasn't okay for you to mention proof; I just suggest that a new topic be made for such discussions, as I didn't see it as appropriate in that particular thread.
Now, on to the Licensed, and Cuusoo sets!
Personally, I fully agree with Lego's stance 100%. I agree with the lines that have been made, and I agree with the two sets that have been rejected. To refresh some memories, here are the in-question current licenses and the rejects from Cuusoo:
The Lord of the Rings (PG-13)
Star Wars (PG/PG-13)
Indiana Jones (PG/PG-13)
Prince of Persia (PG-13)
Pirates of the Carribean (PG-13)
Shaun of the Dead ®
There has been a plethora of messages questioning Lego's decision on why to license the first five franchises/films, and to deny the last two the same honor. There have been statements that Lego is outright lying that these two are too far away, maturity-wise, from their core audience of 6-11 year olds. There have also been ideas that there is nothing different between all seven franchises, maturity-wise. Let's take a look at what questionable material all of these bring in terms of what Lego doesn't wish to produce:
Lord of the Rings
- Severe violence- x3
- Mild violence- x5
- Severe violence- x1
- Profanity- Damn x2, Hell x1
- Brief sexual content
- Mild violence x3
- Severe violence x1
- Profanity- S**t x 3, Ba***rd x3, Hell, Damn, B**ch x4,
- Religious Imagery
- Brief sexual content
- Brief sexual content x3
- Sexual content x1
- Violence x3
- Profanity- Hell, Ba***rd, Damn x4, A** x1
As can be seen these all hold some degree of adult content in terms of violence, sex, language, and drugs. The severity of these circumstances is up to the individual viewer. Some would say that they aren't offensive for a variety of reasons; some would say that they are equal to or surpass the following:
- Severe sexual content
- Mild sexual content
- Sever violence
- Mild violence
- Profanity- Hell, S**t
- Mild sexual content
- Severe violence
- Profanity- C**t x1, F*** x47, S**t x32, Prick x9, A** x2, N****r x5, Jesus x3, C***s***er x4, T**t x1, W**k x3, m*** x2, and ch**k x4
- Modern drinking
With this, it is quite easy to tell why Yatkuu's Winchester project didn't make the cut; Lego doesn't want to be associated with that majestic amount of strong language. Who can blame them? While many of us won't mind talking that way around kids, Lego has a very different stance, I'm sure. Now, tbone_tbl's Firefly project, I can find it a little difficult to see it from Lego's point of view. I won't say that this is definitively their stance, I can provide some support for their decisions. In order to do this, however, we must venture into the realm of what the source material is, as a medium... Join me, shall you?
First, let's take a look at the already-produced questionables. What do these have in common with one another that make them such a great addition to the Lego world? First of all and most importantly, these all have a huge fanbase (with perhaps the exception of Prince of Persia); Who hasn't heard of Pirates of the Caribbean, Indiana Jones, Lord of the Rings, or Star Wars? These are classics in terms of cinematic and literary history. These are precious gems that people are familiar with. They are gems that teach us about worldly things. People have changed because of these works. They have inspired countless individuals. They gave us something that didn't exist. Within these realms lie truths that provide us with moral guidance, and they teach us aspects of humanity that perhaps we haven't considered. There lie within these works the messages of honesty, integrity, bravery, self-reliance, and self-sacrifice. They teach us that we all have the power to accomplish our goals if we apply ourselves. They can teach us so many things that remain unlisted. These are famous and classic works that provide famous and classic messages.
Now, as I've admitted, I haven't watched Firefly, nor have I watched Serenity; I haven't heard of them. Perhaps one day they may indeed be classics, but at this current point in time, it isn't. I would like to be enlightened, however, on what this series does provide. I would like examples of these lessons as well from the fans of the series.
The work's theme, and what the work can teach us plays a huge role, I imagine, regarding what Lego will and will not produce. It isn't necessarily how much swearing, smoking, violence, or sexuality that a film has because I feel that those can be overlooked if they are a way to tell the story instead of enhancing it. There are, undoubtedly, limits, however. Lego has made it very clear what it doesn't want to be associated with, and I don't think we can honestly hold that against them. The boxes may say 16+, but the actual content is always age appropriate of a child.
Now it's time to share your thoughts, should you so choose. What are your views regarding the ethics of these lines?
Edited by LRDark, 09 May 2012 - 04:08 AM.