Thursday, June 6, 2013

Finnair forced to repaint A330 livery after embarrassing copyright violation

Finnair has been accused of copyright violation with its A330 liveryWell, this is embarrassing. Finnair has been promoting a brand new Airbus A330 livery, designed by European clothing and home furnishing retailer Marimekko… only to find out the design was copied from Ukrainian folk art.

The plagiarism was initially reported by Helsingin Sanomat newspaper, which noticed the similarities between Marimekko's pattern and a 1963 painting by the late Ukrainian folk artist Maria Primachenko.

Soon afterwards, designer Kristina Isola issued a confession and apology about the copyright violation, stating “I didn't think about copyright or that I took someone else's creative work”.

The incident was described as “very unpleasant” by the National Museum of Ukrainian Folk Art, owner of the original painting, which is also seeking legal advice.

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Finnair has since promised to repaint the livery, although the airline is not breaking its partnership with Marimekko, which provides textiles and tableware on board the airline’s flights.

The 'Metsanvaki' design, a naivistic portray of a forest, had been painted on a side of one of Finnair's long-haul planes. "The pattern was introduced by Marimekko in 2008, and we naturally trusted its originality," Finnair said in a statement.

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  1. Oops! I hope Ukrainian Museum won't take it personal. The greatest expression of admiration, is imitation. But in a world run by lawyers, "lawsuit," is a common term in any language.

  2. AY's forgot to check copyright violation or most likely their promotional company' error!

  3. Henning HeinemannJune 7, 2013 at 10:28 PM

    It would probably be cheaper to work out a deal with the copyright holder than repaint the plane. Probably some cash and an ad/article for the museum in the inflight magazine would do the trick.

    1. I don't think that's in the interest of Finnair. They wanted something original from Finland to represent their airline, not stolen artwork from another country.

  4. This does not surprise me at all. Copyrighted material has long been infringed on. I am not sure if it is the same copyright laws in existence, but many years ago, all you had to do is change the design by 25%. I am sure that Marimeko thought they knew what they were doing, and figured nobody would notice. Congrats to the Ukrainians.

  5. Ouch. Paint is expensive! 

  6. And it was a monument of bad taste too!!!! What's going on with Airlines?.... Is Kitsch the rule now????

  7. Air-Ride TransportationJune 10, 2013 at 9:48 PM

    What an ugly design any way.

  8. It is a pity as they invested imagination and money in this.


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