A Soccer Ball Full of Treats Is All This Honey Badger Needs ...
Let’s be real for a second: if you offer up your own version of an iconic YouTube video to advertise a product, without asking permission from the original creator, you can certainly expect a social media and PR disaster.
That was the case for meat-free food brand Quorn on Wednesday, when they decided to advertise their new ‘UniQuorn’ product with a take on Jonti “Weebl” Picking’s viral 2003 hit, ‘Badgers’.
If the name alone doesn’t conjure up an image of dozens of squatting badgers, then the fact it’s a song which genuinely repeats the word ‘badger’ over and over before saying ‘mushroom, mushroom’ might.
In a tweet on Twitter, Quorn Foods UK wrote: “Don’t believe what the grown-ups told you, UniQuorns are REAL!
“Magically golden, magically crunchy, and magically vegan. Catch our NEW UniQuorns in Iceland stores from August 31st.”
The accompanying video saw the memorable ‘badger’ line replaced with ‘Uniquorn’, a three-syllable word which didn’t exactly work under a clunky drum beat, before cutting to the same ‘mushroom, mushroom’.
\u201c@QuornFoods You could've just hired Weebl to make this for you, y'know that right? It would've been better in both visuals and audio, and saved you the hassle from people pointing out you ripped off his work.\u201d
Responding to Weebl’s post, the Quorn Foods Twitter account said: “Here at Quorn, we are HUGE fans of yours and the iconic Badger, Badger, Badger (it’s been stuck in our head since 2003).
“If you could please send us a DM with your best email address and phone number, we can chat in more detail.”
On Thursday, Mr Picking – whose other YouTube successes include songs about ‘Narwhals’ and ‘Magical Trevor’ – confirmed a “solution” to the situation had been reached.
“Looks like we've got a solution to the Quorn situation that everyone should be happy with. HUGE thank you for everyone's support, especially Austen Kay for all your help.
“It's means so much and I'm utterly humbled by the response.”
Shedding some more light on what exactly the solution is, a Quorn spokesperson told Indy100: “Following some positive discussions Jonti has agreed to collaborate on a revised version of the UniQuorns film, produced under license, which Quorn acknowledge is what should have happened in the first place.”
Weebl added: "It shouldn't have happened and I think this is a problem that happens far too often to independent creators and it's a real shame that an industry that relies heavily on creatives isn't more supportive. This has been resolved amicably and for that I'm grateful.
"The support for my work by the internet has been incredible and the main thing I'm taking from this is that my idiotic animations have meant something to so many.
"It's been a rough few years for a lot of people mentally. To know people care is a great feeling."
Lesson learned, we hope.
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