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NEO-COLONIALISM: Internet war brewing over Lego's use of te Reo

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BZPower, an enthusiast's website for Lego toys called 'Bionicles', has had its forum pages shut down by what they exaggeratingly call attacks by a "Maori cyberterrorist".

The Danish toy company received a letter in May 2001 from lawyer Maui Solomon, representing three Maori groups - Ngati Kuri, Te Rarawa and Ngati Wai. They objected to the appropriation and commodification of the Reo - the Bionicle universe is filled with terms lifted from polynesian and Maori history and language. [ Guardian | BBC ]

Lego first rejected the claims of "cultural piracy", although later agreed to stop using the language to market new products . They have refused to withdraw the toy from the market.

The Aotearoalive.com website has received a threat from the "Army of Free Speech" and have posted their reply here.

Update: Click here to read a new response to BZPowers claims of 'cyber-terrorism', the use of intellectual property by other states to profit from other cultures, and the appropriation and reselling of identity by C Karena.

[ The Mataatua Declaration | Maui Solomen on intellectual property rights | Aotearoalive.com | Scoop commentary ]

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