The Only Time Plagiarism Has Ever Been Funny

At the end of January, I posted my January Book Haul and in that post, I included this photo:

quotesedit

This is a photo of some of my favourite John Green quotes which I decided to print and frame and stick on my wall along with my brand spanking new bookshelf. A lot of people said to me that they liked this idea and thought the framed quotes ideas was a good one and I agree – I was over the moon at how they turned out and they are displayed proudly on my wall.

“I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to and people I’ve never met” is a fantastic quote from Paper Towns – a book which I absolutely adore and recently re-read. After reading the book, I swiftly turned to my boyfriend and said, “You know that quote on my wall, the ‘I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to’ one?”, “Yes?” he said, “I don’t remember seeing that quote in the book. It must be in there ‘cos that’s where I got it from, but I don’t remember reading it this time around”.

Turns out… That’s because it isn’t in Paper Towns. Or any of John Green’s books for that mater.

In fact, it’s not even John Green’s quote.

A few days ago, only shortly after my second re-read of Paper Towns, John Green posted this video to his vlogbrothers YouTube account:

It explains the story of the unintentionally plagiarized quote. It’s a brilliant video which I definitely suggest you should watch – he also explains who actually came up with this quote (a vlogbrother fan) and that now all the royalties he makes from sales of the poster with that quote on go to her.

The aim of this post is just to show you how widely and deeply readers admire and follow authors to the point where we collectively believe that memorable quotes come from their books when in actual fact, have nothing to do with their books. I am one of these people – as a huge John Green fan I was convinced for over a year that he had said this wonderful quote and I could even tell you which point in the book it was written and who it was said by! Which is ridiculous because it’s not written in the book at all or said by anyone.

Authors have such an impact on readers, bloggers and book lovers lives – I don’t think a lot of them know to what extent this is true. This whole situation also says a lot about humans and the human mind but that’s a whole different argument for a different day.

I wanted to write a little post about this because 1) I thought it was hilarious – the moment I saw this video I screamed at my boyfriend, “You know that quote that I couldn’t remember reading in Paper Towns? THATS BECAUSE IT’S NOT IN IT!” and secondly it shows the power in which authors and fans both have.

Oh and guys, don’t plagiarise. It’s not cool. Intentionally or not.

You can buy the poster here which states who the actual author of the quote is 🙂

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8 thoughts on “The Only Time Plagiarism Has Ever Been Funny

    • It’s a fine line, definitely but in this case, John Green definitely didn’t do it on purpose. He’d pretty much got convinced by his fans that he wrote something that he didn’t! So it wasn’t really his fault at all – he just seemed to go along with what his fans were saying.

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