The Blog

Simpsons Did It

Posted by Enzo on November 21, 2012

Someone pointed this out to me this morning.

Link to my comic

Link to the New Yorker comic

Of course, my gut reaction is to cry foul. The comic I drew went viral and made the rounds of the internet last month with no attribution tied to it -- if you search "Canadian Standoff" on Google Images" you'll see it everywhere, but no link back to my website. I can just imagine an established professional cartoonist seeing it on their Facebook feed, thinking it is just random internet drawing, and deciding to do their own take on it. Conspiracy! Blasphemy! Plagiarism, rah rah!

On the other hand, after thinking through it clearly, I want to give the artist the benefit of the doubt. A classic case of "Simpsons Did It". Canadian politeness is a very common topic that is made fun of, plus I imagine the joke of a "Canadian Standoff" is definitely not new. Also, I have been in this situation before, but that time I was the one being accused for copying a comic. And it sucks. Because the only explanation I can give for the similarities/coincidence is that "we thought of the exact same joke, but the other guy did it first".

What do you think?



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Discussion (10 Comments)

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  1. Evan

    Given what little I know of the print comics business, it seems unlikely that they could achieve a print turnaround time of one month... I know newspaper comics are filed months in advance. But maybe the New Yorker is different.

  2. Fred

    I think that Mattew Inman can give much better advice than anyone of us.

  3. harry

    That door easily fits both people walking side by side.

  4. One of those things about creating awesome stuff online is that people will share the crap out of it - it's too bad you didn't get attribution back for most of them. The artist surely grabbed the idea from you - but technically it's in their right since they made it different.

    A friendly marketing suggestion - add a few 'share' buttons (facebook, twitter, reddit, pinterest, g+) so people are more likely to share with an interface that will lead to proper attribution.

    Been a long time fan - happy to see that you are back at it and enjoying the process :) Love your art style and story telling - keep up the good work!

    If you need any help from a marketing angle or want to bounce some ideas around, I'm happy to lend a helpful ear.

  5. Taking into consideration how much better your cartoon is than the New Yorker's version, I'd consider this a case of (poor) imitation being the sincerest form of flattery. But I do think a watermark on your comics would be a good idea.

  6. fakeuser

    doubt the new yorker even knows about Canadians.

  7. Cezar Derevlean

    I think you should have put the watermark after each comic in the image. Also, a more e emphasized watermark wold be better.

  8. Lauren

    Oh - my - god - becky! They ripped off your comic and made it only 10% as funny! Fail on them!

  9. Taurus

    Uncool, unfair. CLEARLY PLAGIARISM! The New Yorker, taking advantage of artists and claiming your work as their own. Your comic trumps theirs!

  10. danineteen

    I saw your comic make its rounds, and I thought, SURELY someone would give you proper credit and the whole world would discover your genius. Unfortunately, we end up in this situation where we're not sure if the New Yorker artist thought it was just a random drawing.


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