Thai Government Wants To Copyright Muay Thai

from the not-this-again dept

Over the past few years, we've seen a disturbing trend whereby various countries (many of whom have been pressured to put in place intellectual property laws to appease the US) suddenly start putting intellectual property protections over foods or culturally significant items. For example, there was Lebanon's attempt to "copyright" hummus, Malaysia's attempt to "copyright" popular dishes like Nasi Lamak, and Kenya's recent attempt to "copyright" a traditional bag. Of course, none of these are really "copyrights" in the traditional sense. They're all attempts to use the basic bastardized concept of intellectual property to try to control a piece of cultural heritage.

It appears that Thailand is jumping into this realm as well. thai101 points us to a story of the Thai government "protecting" 25 forms of "traditional arts, wisdom and folklore" via a form of intellectual property protection. Also included? The recently quite popular (in the West) martial art of Muay Thai. Generally these attempts to "protect" such national artforms or foods don't really mean much from a practical standpoint, but it does show how convincing the world that a concept like "intellectual property" is a good thing can lead them to start looking to lock up all sorts of stuff.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
    identicon
    Tex, Aug 5th, 2010 @ 6:50pm

    When's the last time...

    you had a nice, big, steamin' bowl of Wolf Brand chili?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    Svante Jorgensen (profile), Aug 6th, 2010 @ 4:30am

    Feta Cheese

    Here in Europe, the Greece government successfully trademarked the name "Feta" - as in Feta cheese, so that only Feta cheese made in greece is allowed to be branded as Feta.
    Ironically, Denmark (where I live) was the biggest exporter of Feta cheese, but was now forced to call it "Salad Cheese".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 5:56am

    Many cultures worry about saturation of American ideas and their response is to further shackle themselves?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Danny, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:02am

    This is getting out of hand...

    I can see it now
    China copyrights Kung Fu
    Brazil copyrights Capoiera
    France copyrights Fencing
    US and Greece argue over the copyrights to wrestling (ending with them settling that US gets wrestling and Greece gets Greco-Roman wrestling).
    and lastly (and I'm sure this is a sign of the Apocolypse....)

    Japan copyright Ninjas...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:15am

    Don't forget about the people trying to copyright yoga too. Different name, same concept.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:32am

    Re:

    And refreshingly, the Indian goverment is attempting to prevent that using prior art:
    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100713/09445210190.shtml

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:33am

    Why not Mai Tai?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    icon
    Henry Troup (profile), Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:49am

    Re: Feta Cheese

    Isn't that a "DoC" (Denomination d'origin Controlé), rather than strictly a trademark? That's another tentacle of the IP octopus.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    NAMELESS.ONE, Aug 6th, 2010 @ 6:59am

    as kosh of babylon 5 will say

    ...
    and so it begins...

    You see yet where copyright is heading?

    free trade except by copyright control
    SEE how its unfolding....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    icon
    Zacqary Adam Green (profile), Aug 6th, 2010 @ 11:45am

    If anyone tries to enforce this copyright, I'll punch them in the face.

    Oh, wait, that would be infringing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    icon
    Overcast (profile), Aug 6th, 2010 @ 12:33pm

    So - they just copyright everything and get on with the work of impossible enforcement, lol.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Bryce, Aug 7th, 2010 @ 12:46pm

    Maybe now...

    ...India can copyright Yoga.

    I work in the Fitness industry, so I could see how damaging that would be to us. On the otherhand anything that screws Bikram Choudhury's ridiculous attempts to copyright Yoga poses might be considered two wrongs making a right.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    icon
    mhenriday (profile), Aug 8th, 2010 @ 10:43am

    China doesn't need to copyright Gongfu -

    instead they could put a nice little copyright on, e g, paper, including the kind that we use to wipe or nether regions after defecation. Imagine those MPAA and RIAA biggies having to shell out each time ; perhaps they'd worry less about so-called «pirate» versions of films being sold in Beijing and Shanghai.... Henri

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Qyiet, Aug 8th, 2010 @ 3:33pm

    What are they aiming for here?

    Is this a trademark thing, like a name, or are they going for the acutal techniques themselves.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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