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Ayo Sogunro's Love Letter To Linda Ikeji





The above is what you'll see if you try to visit Linda Ikeji's blog right now, but I hear she just tweeted that Linda Ikeji blog will be back in a bit and fans should please bear with her. Coincidentally I also found this "letter" written by Ayo Sogunro to Linda Ikeji following the recent brouhaha:



Dearest Linda Ikeji,

Re: To the Guys That Want To Take Down LIB

Permit me the indulgence of a few lines to your eminent personality. I have been a constant fan of your work, although from afar. To be honest, I rarely open your blog volitionally, never scrolled through the news items on a slow day, never typed out the address on my browser to open it; yet, like hundreds of thousands of other Nigerians—I find myself falling into your domain through the intricacies of internet sharing and their damn hyperlinks. Despite this non-conscious increment of your page views, I dare say that I have had no cause to complain about the content of LIB—I expected to find gossip and entertainment not Shakespeare, and you have never disappointed me.

So, again, I am a huge admirer of your intrepid work.

But this is not to say I have not had some mixed feelings—possibly on the verge of “beef”: as a writer who has managed to capture some viral attention on social media myself, I know how difficult it is to get to the top. Like you have rightly pointed out, you are highly ranked in the Nigerian cybersphere. And, you could say I envy—to use our recent diction—your super-megastar blog status.

Yet, this is not an automatic “hating”.


You see, I do not hold your successes against you. The fact that gossip and entertainment blogs rank higher than informative or analytical ones is hardly your fault—it’s just a simple reflection of our society’s intellectual values. More importantly, if you don’t make the money from this, someone else will, anyway. Considering your status as, I think, a single black woman, it is all the more inspiring that you are the one raking in all that cash and influence. Believe me, this is a really inspiring story—worthy of its own biopic sometime.

But on the other hand, here is the problem: we live in a world of laws and regulations, and most of your critics have come from that angle. And a lot of people cherish these legal values. In fact, some people are almost insane about the extent to which they are prepared to enforce laws. These people are passionate enough about their rights under the law to come across as your “haters”. I, for one, am willing to ignore a lot of these unreasonable laws—but not everyone one can be as patient as I am.

Now, what do I mean?

Take, for example, the other day when you published my letter criticizing that son of the Abachas: I was quite happy to see it posted on your blog even without you requesting permission. Practically the whole of Nigeria’s internet did, anyway. I didn’t mind. I am crazy like that. For people like me, we are happy to see our content shared around the world without restrictions, even where the person sharing it is making money from it. To people like me, the moral right to be acknowledged as the writer is sufficient, and we do not care much about the economic rights—which is why I will never get to buy a Range Rover.

You got the moral rights acknowledgment aspect correct in your response to these so-called haters. But, a lot of my writer friends are not haters, they are simply hard workers who would also like, very much, to buy their own Range Rovers someday; a difficult enough ambition in Nigeria, where writing is about the lowest paying job or business an African can have. Consequently, a number of my writer friends are very guarded, not just about the moral rights, but also about the economic rights of their writings.

Now, I do not necessarily agree with their position about sharing online content. This is where you and I are on the same page—afterall, we should all be grateful first to Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, who gave us this medium without copyright or licensing restrictions. But, we do not control the laws or the regulations governing copyright—and so we have to understand the point of my writer friends. These people are not “haters” and they do not want to take down your blog just to make some money. No, they are mostly writers with genuine economic copyright grievances—and that 2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged didn’t help them to suddenly become more understanding.

Consequently, we should be able to see their perspective, considering also that Google sees their perspective.

All of these is why: first, as a publisher, you need a lawyer to help you circumnavigate the murky waters of copyright—forget the excuse that everyone else is doing it, and focus on doing it right; secondly, start some payment terms for the hungry, trekking, writers whose writing you “borrow”—you will be surprised how cooperative they can get. Thirdly, you may need an accountant too, just to balance the costs of all these economics. It’s a small price to pay to save yourself the burden of critics—and you may end up having to own, maybe, not a Range Rover. But you will rest easy from spammers, hackers, and critics who will stop at nothing to get you off the charts.

These, of course, do not mean you will not have genuine haters determined to make cyberspace a warfront for you—but for genuine haters, just like you said, you have “the backing of God”, same as the rest of us mortals. Meanwhile, get the backing of the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for all the other stuff. You’re in the big leagues now, and the legal world comes with the package.

On a personal note, I am also very keen on changing my car; My 2004 Honda Accord is so not supercharged and has become a bit of a drag with old age. A retainer with my firm would be a quietly and quite satisfactory arrangement for both of us. As a bonus: you get the services of a great writer into the bargain—particularly to help with all those pesky original content.

I look forward to your prompt response.

Yours respectfully, sincerely, faithfully, captivated and so on, etc.

Ayo Sogunro.

Comments

  1. Thelma I warned you about this blogspot thingy sometime ago but you removed my comment. see what I mean now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anon I took your advice seriously and only deleted in order not to give anyone ideas. After reading your comment I went ahead to get it and will begin using that soon. Thanks a lot.

      Delete
  2. After reading the whole letter I now understand whats happening to Linda. I feel sorry 4 her but her greed is what caused the whole wahala in the first place.

    ReplyDelete
  3. If only Linda knew buying a range rover will cause all this...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I swear! Or making it public and getting thousands of good wishes! Lol.. cuz at some point I was like... ahn ahn.. is this about the range? Lol.. but I guess it's more than that and we need to stop overlooking laws in this country. A lot of things are taken for granted and now Linda has to pay for her "oversight" . Tor! Wish her the best sha.. hope she comes out of this stronger, better and wiser.

      Delete
  4. Please this lawyer should stfu. Why is it only Linda? Which gossip blogger doesn't do this? Linda is even better than most. They're all so mad over the Range. Jealous fools.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Look wat ignorance has cost most nigerians and dis Anon is walking blindly towards dat path all in the name of 'spirituality, emotionalism etc'...instead of it serving as a lesson. *sigh* God bless Nigeria!

      Delete
    2. Using "others are doing it" to justify illegal practices is pretty lazy, short sighted and very common in Nigeria. How are we going to move forward with this kind of thinking?

      Ayo Sogunro's letter is the best opinion Linda should expect to get from anyone, she is on the verge of making a giant leap forward or her blog dying a sudden death. It is up to her to choose.

      There is a point you reach in life when old ways of thinking will not cause additional benefits and will in fact open you up to be eaten, this is the point where you need new skills and a different support system to survive and make that jump.

      Success has a price and you continue to pay for as long as you hope to remain at the top.

      Delete
  5. Thelma biko start using it ojhh cos we the TTB fans wouldn't wanna miss u for a sec@as for Linda,God help her to resolve the issue fast,i feel she shouldn't have publicised the range rover thingy even though pple would have found out,. I wish her well sha

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm sorry. Call me Insensitive if U wish.
    Na Only TTB I care about!
    Original is T's middle name. Let's keep it at that.
    & Thelma, kindly watch the kindda pictures u post please. People are hungry this period...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Let ne say thelma is really trying. ... when I read her post, even d radom pictures she uses... she credits d source! Dat is quite uncommon with most blogs I read. Thelms. ..reae laila's post on dis kinda ikeji's issue.. peruse d comment esp dat of one mary; she did write exclusively on dis cyber laws and d likes. U shld take a cue from dere and keed her opinions in perspective. As for linda.. she shall rise lik d phoenix rises from its ashes! However, she needs to keep her arrogance and show of personal accomplishment in check. check since dats d grouse of many people and probably d foundation of her problem.aside from d main plagiarism sto ry.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please forgive my typos jare.... one of d reasons I dont type long comments or any at all sef. I must sha tabon! Usually typos

      Delete
    2. Thelma is a lawyer, she is learned.

      Forget typos abeg, idea is need!

      Delete
    3. Yes she is. However cyber law is a special branch of law which we werent taught in school. Dou I believe as a blogger... she will jave dobe d needful research in addition to her general knowledge of law and intellectual property law

      Delete
  8. Linda doesn't give credit to anyone. She can't tell me that all the stories she posts on her blog are exclusive to her. Thats why I love Tee and my name sake Myne at romancemeetlife.com . Even pictures they will acknowledge the source. I pray she learns from this.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I feel sorry for linda, she didn't understand the murky waters of blogging,she just stumbled on it like she said it started as a hobby and then it transcended into a business. This should be a big lesson to entrepreneurs today, ignorance is not an excuse.
    And whatever you have to do , do it now!

    ReplyDelete

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  11. Replies
    1. Lol. Lips sealed. xoxo.

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