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We have a vision to support new comer in kusudama origami. Ask yourself how you got interested in Kusudama art? Firstly, you have famous artist as a role model and want to do as they do. So you started to fold your first kusudama from book or youtube created by your favorite artist. Another story is children started to know kusudama because they learn from Math class in school. Then they want to know more by searching the internet. And that their interest is focus on the structure of unit design or how it can be done whatever who is the designer.


Two different intention create different priority. We may choose to honor artist over the beauty of art. And that normalize a culture to always write designer name with your artwork post. In this frame, one will not interested in invent their own kusudama and stick to fold only from their favorite designer. Moreover, they believe every folder must do as they do and use the word copyright to make it makes sense as a law.


In the perspective that prioritize unit invention, we focus to the word credit, reference, citation for honor the process of unit design. For example, we call Sonobe unit in honor to Mitsunobu Sonobe without written his full name. The name of unit is honor to the designer itself. As the attempt to invent new kusudama by ourselves, we begin with modify existed models. Then try not to stick to their technique to develop our own method. This is a normal process to create something with hopefully it might be something never created before.


I think the second way is more appealing because it encourages people to start an invention.

Sometimes the artist name may not be mention if we did not use them as a reference. And if it is accidentally the same design, we will add their name to the document with our name too. We treat this as telling the truth and we did not believe in one and only one ownership. Our name as a credit is also important as famous artist name too. And that does not mean we did not respect artist. It is okay to consider us as bad manner to not contact for permission in order to use their model to modify or to ignore the removal request messages. But it is not okay to label us as a theft by copyright law and invite people to do cyber-bulling as a punishment. We can consider this action is clearly not respect us and ongoing conflict never end.


There is a case when people do a fake account to pretend to be that creator. This is not consider as a copy issue, it is called a hijack and must be takedown. There are many scammer and cyberhacker nowadays. I am aware that their target is the person that being criticized. And they will have a valid reason to attack that person by hack personal information or install a malware for fun as an entertaining punishment. This is a consequence of cyber-bullying by mean of copyright issue and we will lost some talent person because of mental illness.


Sometimes we were taught to feel unhappy if we see our work appear somewhere without acknowledge us before. I questioned and challenge myself to change this mindset. I feel surprise when I saw my work appear somewhere without permission. And this is an indicator that your work is so valuable to be worth for copying.


I think we must discuss how to reach the win-win situation, both authors and folders gain the fair benefit.

Two perspectives are "ownership" and "customer centric". Some people got to a fight to argue who copy who. On the other hand, the real customers who really put out paper sheets just enjoy folding the model they love. They love to see new YouTube video and they will watch every video with the same topic to study. If they really appreciate, they will find out to buy artist's books or other products. This is the process of how people want to buy a book. However, it is annoying when many users ask creator to give an instruction for free. The possible way to give free instruction and creator get some money is being a YouTuber. What if creator only publish a book to get some money and convince people to buy because the instruction is only available here. Then if there are YouTube video with the same instruction, creator think it will decrease their book selling. But actually it helps increase the book selling because people want to see what is really the original. So in this case I think the more creating instruction, the more benefit gain for everyone.


We rarely see an application of kusudama to be a highly profitable product. There are publishing a diagram book or creating YouTube video tutorial for monetization. The handmade craft products such as Modular Lamp and origami jewelry may create some revenue but it is hard to do for living. When thinking of how much time and craftmanship skill to make these products, we must be thankful to those who really appreciate kusudama whatever they are the designer or did they ask for permission. I appreciate folders to mention my name, no problem if they don't. I did not focus on my name, I focus on the truth of information. Where to get the instruction? So that everybody else can do it too. When they gain money, there will be a chance for them to support artists by buying their book in the future.

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Vote English Title for this article

  • Hidden messages of paper folding

  • Implication for origami practice

As a kid, we learn to play with paper by folding it. The moment we see plain paper transformed to something amazing impress our experience. When we grow up, paper folding is known as an activity for kids, or just a hobby to enjoy after work.


Paper folding in Japanese is called Origami. This word becomes deep meaning nowadays. Origami is involved in mathematical science, engineering, and promote it as a tool for STEM education. When we see origami as a high-class technology, it becomes serious with kids and they might have a bias believe that it is difficult. Japanese culture for origami may be a tool to deliver indirectly messages in an art form. So each origami creation contains a secret meaning or feeling or character of who fold it. Some situation you have to stay and cannot escape such as legs injury hospitalized or waiting for the end of difficult education. You might do origami to create something interesting and the hard time pass unconsciously.


An origami skill is questioned to be valuable. With only origami skill, it is hard to do for living. But I believe it is a basic skill that leads to develop complex skill for new innovation also to express ourselves as a human being. The purpose of teaching origami may be different for each individual. Just an entertainment, an example for geometry curriculum, or a spiritual art. Origami material is just paper, so it is affordable for everyone to learn. But the invisible cost is time, do you want to spend 2-10 hours to create origami instead of financial investment.


For me, I am tired from capitalism and do origami as an art of hidden messages.

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My first unpleasant experience about kusudama was around 2015. One of the rules I learn is no one can post kusudama YouTube video without permission from the designer. These rules have disturbed my thinking everyday.

If I become an artist, I will not use these rules to my work.

As a destiny, I got talent from nowhere to make a plenty of kusudama since December 2018.


To be analytical, I will find the reason to support each point of view.


Rule 1: No one can post kusudama YouTube video without permission from the designer

Why we have this rule?

  1. To prevent other people make money from artist's designs.

  2. To be ethic and show respect to the designer.

What will happen when YouTuber break this rule?

  1. The regulation team will leave a comment "please delete the video".

  2. If the comment was ignored, bad reputation will be given to their kusudama community and spread to public social media post.

  3. The regulation team will invite folders to ban that YouTuber by not folding their works.

What are the possible consequences?

  1. Some creators will not continue creating new work because of fear.

  2. Many people will become a regulator to be noticed as a kusudama expert.

  3. Folders will play safe to fold only models that the regulation team approved.

  4. Artists will get too many email asking for permission. /or/ Artists will not get any email and no one will make a video of their design.

  5. Friendship will be destroyed among origami community.

Who gain the benefit from this rule?

  1. The regulator team will consider themselves successful to protect the artist.

  2. Artists may gain benefit by monopoly principle.

Who lost the benefit from this rule?

  1. Folders cannot access to the instruction nor share an alternative instruction easily.

  2. Artist's designs may be forgotten. (Mankind lost knowledge)

  3. Creators may get an injustice copyright infringement.

What is the problem?

The rule is not clearly written about the punishment for people who break the rule. The regulation team believe they have right to do a punishment. My question is can we trust the regulation team?

My suggestion for punishment:

  1. Let YouTuber pay for a license of the design. (this is a copyright law objective)

  2. If YouTuber disagree, contact YouTube to remove the video. (let YouTube decide, not the regulation team)

  3. Sue in court. (this is the best way to test origami copyright valid)

Rule 2: Each kusudama has only one name and only one designer.

Why we have this rule?

  • To maintain the history of unit invention.

What is the problem?

  1. It is normal to invent the same unit because kusudama design is abstract and simple. But we cannot confidently write our name as a designer because there might be someone invent before. We also did not know the name of model if it existed. The regulators suggest to write ? after our name to be humble and write no name for the social media post. The regulators expect everybody to do this practice. If creator just give name immediately and state their name as a designer, the regulators will check for the copyright. This will be fallen with Rule 1.

  2. The word "designer" is misleading. Its meaning become "the first inventor" instead of "invent by myself".

  3. If the idea come from existed unit, use the word "variation" after original name. It is hard to clarify what is a variation or what is not.

  4. Kusudama has many structure levels for naming:

  5. Unit

  6. 30 units model

  7. Finished artwork with paper and color choices We use only one name for all differentiation. This limitation suppress creativity and freedom to express interpretation of design.

  8. The regulators will ask creator to change their artwork name and the artwork lost its meaning representation.

What is the benefit if each kusudama has many names and many designers?
  1. Folders will give credit to the source that they learnt from. If the first designer did not give an instruction, they cannot have right to claim all the work from later designer hardworking.

  2. New creator can use the word designed by with no anxiety.

  3. Creators no longer have to wait the approval from regulators.

  4. Newly social post will be seen only once in feed. No name model will be recognized as no name, make it hard to give a reference to the design. Give name immediately is better for identification.

  5. Keep the fact how the model was designed. If creators invent by themselves but write designed by other, this will be misunderstood that they learn from other artist which is not true.

  6. There is no concept of model was stolen because many people can own the same design. If the model is well-known, the original author will be given credit by the majority of community. The designer will not lose the ownership.

Summary

I think the rules should make everybody life easier, but many people who hold this tradition will disagree.

We aim to protect artists, but actually we disrupt wellbeing of society.

We want to inspire kids to create something new, but the rules are not supportive.

This is my point of view, thank you for reading this proposal.

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