Creative thinking from a copyright holder

PUBLISHED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am


Lady Gaga seems to be actively encouraging the buying of counterfeit goods. Indeed, all her little monsters - and those less keen on her music - may have her tacit permission to buy her pirated CDs. How else can you understand her stance on fake goods and copyright violations when she joked repeatedly about feeling the urge to shop for cheap counterfeit goods from this and that famous brand during her cross-Asia, Born This Way tour?

After landing in Bangkok last week, the American singer and kitsch provocateur caused a furore when she tweeted: 'Ready for 50,000 screaming Thai monsters. I wanna get lost in a lady market and buy fake Rolex.' Her Twitter messages reach 24 million fans, but this one upset many of her proud Thai followers.

The message has been denounced as offensive, insulting and bad for Thailand's image. Notice no one said it was untrue, though, about the ease with which you can buy a fake Rolex in Bangkok, just as you can in Tsim Sha Tsui.

While Lady Gaga was in Hong Kong, she also offended a few people here for saying much the same thing. According to a Post reader, she tweeted and said again during a concert here that Hong Kong's streets are lined with fake Hermes Birkin bags. This may not be literally true, but we get the gist. The reader was so offended that he left half-way through the show and wrote a letter to this paper to demand an apology from her.

We are sure the singer could afford a few genuine Birkin bags and Rolex watches. But it's refreshing to see a top entertainer adopting such a cavalier attitude towards counterfeit goods and copyright, which presumably includes her own music. Most entertainers get on their high horses, denouncing those who buy fakes based on their movies or music as tantamount to stealing from them. That is, of course, complete nonsense. They think too much of themselves. Many people would simply not buy the originals if they had to pay the full price. So fakes may actually help entertainers reach a wider audience.

But if Lady Gaga thinks like that, well, that may be the most original thing she has done in her career.