Norway’s Sinnataggen and Monolitten fair game for copycats: ruling

Oslo’s famous Sinnataggen (Spitfire or Angry Boy) and Monolitten (Monolith) monuments are free to be copied for profit, after the city’s municipality lost a bid to reserve rights to Gustav Vigeland’s sculptures.

Norway’s Sinnataggen and Monolitten fair game for copycats: ruling
Composite: Tore Meek, Terje Pedersen / NTB scanpix

The decision, made by the Norwegian Board of Appeal for Industrial Property Rights on Monday, has also been tried by the EU’s EFTA freed trade court with the same result, reports NRK.

The decision means that the sculptures can be freely copied by anyone for the purpose of making profit.

Norwegian sculptor Vigeland, who created the statues, was born in 1869 and died in 1943 – over 70 years ago, meaning his own rights over the works have expired, writes NRK.

Oslo Municipality has unsuccessfully attempted to prevent this resulting in unlicensed copies of the statues being sold.

“I completely agree with this verdict,” Inger Berg Ørstavik, associate professor at the University of Oslo’s Department of Private Law, told NRK.

No exclusive rights to works of art can be held once copyright has expired, she said.

The case has also become important in principle, since it is the first of its kind, and the EFTA ruling has added European interest in the verdict, she added.

“Both the Gistav Vigeland the sculptor and Vigeland Sculpture Park must be considered part of our cultural heritage,” the Norwegian Board of Appeal for Industrial Property Rights said in its verdict according to NRK.

The Monolitten sculpture at Vigeland Sculpture Park. Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB scanpix

Vigeland was Norway’s leading figure in his art form in the first half of the 20th century.

Oslo Municipality said that it took consolation from the fact that no other third parties would be able to secure rights over the works.

The municipality will not be taking the case further.

“We have been given an outcome over this question and take it into consideration. We wil now continue with what is most important for us – showing who Vigeland the artist was,” Rina Mariann Hansen, a member of the municipality’s culture committee, told NRK. 

READ ALSO: A-ha's Mags makes giant Oslo sculpture park


Have Oslo’s new electric scooter rules reduced accidents?

New rules were brought in to combat the sharp rise in accidents and injuries involving electric scooters in Oslo. But, one month later, have the new regulations done the job?  

Have new rules had an impact on the number of accidents involving scooters in Oslo. Pictured it two e-scooters parked outside a

New rules brought in to cut down on the number of e-scooter accidents in Norway’s capital appear to have had the desired effect as incidents were more halved in September, when the rules were introduced, compared to the month before. 

This is according to figures from Oslo University Hospital’s (OUS) emergency department that have been obtained by newspaper Aftenposten

The Emergency Medical Service in Oslo registered 143 injuries in connection with electric scooters in September. In August, the month before measures were brought in, there were 301 injuries.’

Compared to the peak of accidents in June, where 436 injuries were recorded, incidents are down by almost two-thirds. 

“We are very happy. This is what we hoped for,” Henrik Siverts, chief physician at OUS’s emergency department, told the newspaper Aftenposten

‘We feared it would happen’: Oslo sees first death of electric scooter rider

Among the new stricter rules introduced for rental scooters, which included significantly cutting the number of devices in the city, was a curfew that prevented people from using them between 11pm and 5am. 

Siverts said that the curfew had a dramatic effect in reducing accidents at night. 

“Unsurprisingly, accidents have gone down at night time. What injuries we do get at night are probably people who privately own their scooters. But accidents have also gone down during the day, too,” he explained.  

Just eight injuries were recorded in September at night, compared to just under 100 in August. 

Over the summer, a surge in accidents meant accident and emergency departments in Oslo were forced to have more staff on during weekends. Still, as a result of the reduction in scooter accidents, staffing has now returned to normal. 

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