J.K. Rowling in New Plagiarism Suit: It's All Hogwarts. er, Hogwash!

Article excerpt

The wizarding world of Harry Potter is not immune to muggle concerns, and it couldn’t be more evident than when the “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling was recently named in a lawsuit alleging she had stolen ideas for her widely popular books from a deceased British author’s work.  The estate of the late Adrian Jacobs, who died in 1997, had reportedly filed a copyright infringement lawsuit in June against Rowling’s publishing company, Bloomsbury Publishing PLC.  The lawsuit reportedly claimed Rowling’s book, “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” (the fourth in the series, published in July 2000) lifted substantial parts from Jacobs’ own “The Adventure of Willy the Wizard No. 1 Livid Land,” which came out in 1987. The estate added that many other ideas from “Willy the Wizard” were copied into the now-amazingly lucrative teenage wizard book series.  Bloomsbury was reportedly first approached by Jacobs’ estate in 2004 with its claims, but was not able to identify any of the alleged copied text. This prompted Bloomsbury to dismiss the claims as “unfounded, unsubstantiated and untrue.”  On February 17, Jacobs’ estate added J.K. Rowling in the list of defendants in the same lawsuit after learning that the statute of limitations to sue the struggling mother-turned-author had not yet run out as they previously thought. …