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A comparison of Lego fan senteosan's submission (left) and Lego's final product (right)
A comparison of Lego fan senteosan's submission (left) and Lego's final product (right)

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Lego's Jurassic Park set resembles a rejected fan submission

Toy company Lego, which has been accused of stealing an idea from a fan submission for a set it released in June, has defended itself by saying "great minds think alike."

Lego fan Sami Mustonen, who goes by the online name of senteosan, had submitted a design for a Jurassic Park set to the Lego Ideas website, which is run by Lego and allows users to submit ideas for Lego products to be turned into potential sets available commercially.

But Mustonen's design was rejected by the Lego Ideas team in May 2015, despite getting 10,000 supporters for it on the site. An idea that receives 10,000 supporters on the Ideas site stands a chance of being produced as an official Lego product with the original designer receiving 1% of the royalties.

Mustonen's design included a Tyrannosaurus Rex and the main gate of Jurassic Park, and includes a Jurassic Park jeep. Lego's design includes a Tyrannosaurus Rex and the main gate of Jurassic Park. But it does not include the jeep. Also, Lego's design is of a larger size, and has rooms built into the back gate.

In an interview with Lego fan site Stone Wars, Mustonen said he recently received an email from the toy company explaining the background for the design of the new set and clarifying the origins of the design for the Tyrannosaurus Rex model, which dated back to 2012 under Lego designer Mike Psiaki when he had just joined the company.

Unlike some Creators who would be angered at similarities between their work and a big company's, Mustonen is not bothered by this incident, saying: "They don’t owe me any explanations, it’s already been many years since my submission and of course they can use the ideas later how they want."

But he said he would had felt differently if the set had been released in the same year his submission got rejected.

He said: "…I think it’s not even close to looking the same as my idea so I don’t have any problem with the new set. They will send me a copy of the new set which was a very pleasant surprise for me."

Lego has defended its Jurassic Park set design by saying it is a fact that there may be unintentional overlaps between products being developed internally by its design teams and those submitted by fans via Lego Ideas.

It said: "This is simply because great minds think alike sometimes, especially when basing designs on popular licenses of movies, TV shows, vehicles, buildings and more, with whom we either already collaborate with or who fit the Lego brand values for potential future collaborations."

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Mark Laudi

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