Banksy did not steal from Crap Hound

 I posted last week about Banksy possibly stealing written material from Sean Tejaratchi in Crap Hound. Like most rumors, the truth is significantly less salacious. In fact, it sounds like this whole thing was just a big, sloppy misunderstanding.

I'm a fan of Banksy's work and was relieved to hear this. Apologies to him for any negativity our post sent your way. 

You can read Sean's explanation here.


  1. I’m confused.  Is there a relationship between Cory Doctorow (i.e., a founder of BoingBoing and owner of and “Crap Hound” (apparently the title of a ‘zine)?  I’m assuming that it’s not a coincidence, but I’m not clear about the connection.

    1. Believe it or not, pure coincidence. Absolutely no connection. We came up with the name in entirely different ways around the same time, without knowing each other.

  2. This is a lot like the Daisy story being shit on by TAL.  I don’t give a shit because I like all of the parties involved.

  3. I wonder if the people who said such lovely things about Banksy in the other thread will come here for their deserving dose of crow.
    I enjoy much of Banksy’s work, and it is refreshing to see that he/she/it (lord only knows under the monkey mask) actually did the right thing from the get go.  It was only a series of events working out poorly that lead it to be lost in the post.  It is nice to see Sean setting the record straight, and explaining the whole story.

    Hopefully this is all settled now, and we can go back to worrying about if Snooki will be having vaginal or c-section birth.  And will her uterus end up as a 3D printable design.   :D

    1. The internet means never having to say you’re sorry.

      Or was it: On the internet, no one can hear you scream.

      1. Aware of this trend, I make it a point to always give a clear apology whenever I owe it to someone. When others do the same, it makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. :) Kinda like this post.

        1. I try to do this too. I think it’s important, because in reality when I step over the line I want to recognize it as a human foible. When other people do so but admit it, it makes me feel less alone in the world… so it seems worth it to swallow pride and say I was wrong when I screw up. I’ve never quite understood the “never apologize” mindset.

          1. Yay!!!:D

            I hold this belief that it’s never too late. I’ve been known to apologise years after the fact- sometimes it takes that long for me to put things into context and realise that I wasn’t as cool as I should have been. 

            And you’re right, it does make one feel less alone…so many people online seem to think that they can never give up so much as an inch of their position. I’m perfectly happy to be proven wrong. It’s called living and learning.

  4. Sometimes I think I’m alone in my dislike of Banksy. He makes millions defacing others’ property and pretending to have a social conscience. I don’t buy it.

      1. That’s funny… when I lived in Japan his books were on sale everywhere. Must have been catering to the white people market amirite?

    1. ha – alone… that’s rich. Join the line of jealous lamewads who wish they could do what Banksy does but who don’t have the balls. Graffiti has been around for a long time but the only time your type cares is when someone is making money and fame from it.

      I’d rather see art than advertising and since I don’t give my permission for marketers to make millions by defacing public places I don’t see why an artist needs to get permission either. Not to mention pissing off people like you is kinda the point.

        1. I don’t have time to copypasta examples of how every time anything about Banksy is posted on BB (and anywhere else) people make the same tired, old argument you did. If I did you would understand that your ‘contribution’ to the discussion is merely a generic response to Banksy – which I’d argue is less valuable than no comment at all.

          1. You seem to have enough time scolding everyone who doesnt share your opinion on this overrated “subversive” elitist. Cool down. Nobody is mad that you like him. Its just a matter of personal taste. There is no deeper meaning in anything that Banksy does. Warhol would have taken that as a compliment by the way. Thats why he is great and lasting. Banksy’s art is so preachy and specific it will be one of those obscure things that people back in the naughties liked. Like Nembutal for 1950s suburban housewifes. ;-)

          2. I don’t see how his opinion is any more tired or old than your insistence that Banksy is above criticism.

            Without taking anything away from Banksy’s artistic tour de force, the truth is that he is not the alpha and omega of clandestine art or of social commentary. Neither is he deserving of immunity. You take offense when Dom points out that Banksy defaces public property, yet the fact that his art is displayed illegally is a crucial aspect of the work. Banksy chose to deface public property because he felt that was the best way to send his message across. Why would you deny that? He breaks the rules in a way which is, I believe, more beneficial to the world than if he acted within the confines of the law, but that doesn’t change the fact that he DOES break them.
            I think you are also sorely missing the point of his work if you think it’s only meant to piss people off. Do you realise that by saying this, you are agreeing with Dom’s opinion that Banksy only pretends to have a social conscience?

            I believe he actually does have one and appreciate his ability to express it. Rabid fanboys like you don’t help, though.

          3. @Stephan: The best way to argue against someone is not by misrepresenting their statements – that would be called a straw man. The only person in this thread who used the word subversive was you. I don’t care what anyone thinks.. I just tire of the same old trite responses from people who think they’re being original (as proven by Dom’s suggestion that he must be the only one who dislikes Banksy).

            Then you reply to my comment with a diatribe of attacks on Banksy: “overrated” “elitist” “no deeper meaning” “preachy”. As I said above I don’t care what someone’s opinion is.. I just care when unoriginality claims itself as originality. I also think you felt like taking a swipe at me because I completely destroyed the legitimacy of your original point.

          4.  @boingboing-5e751896e527c862bf67251a474b3819:disqus : Again with the straw man argument. I never said Banksy was above criticism – I just said tired criticism is tired. If someone has something original to say then go for it, but if the basis of the comment is nothing more than cookie-cutter responses that have been regurgitated endlessly I will call them on it.

            he is not the alpha and omega of clandestine art
            Did I claim he is?

            Neither is he deserving of immunity
            Did I claim he was?

            Why would you deny that?
            I didn’t.

            if you think it’s only meant to piss people off
            I didn’t say that.

            Do you realise that by saying this
            Good thing I didn’t say that.

            Rabid fanboys like you
            Awww my feewings are hurt.

            Come back when you’ve learned to argue in a way which isn’t based on you speaking for me.

          5. Oh, please. I said your response was just as cookie-cutter, typical of a Banksy fanboy. Because it was. You made plenty of assumptions about Dom being bitter, jealous, lame, incapable of originality, afraid to speak out, and all he did was say two things:

            1. that Banksy defaces public property
            2. that Banksy only pretends to have a social conscience.

            Only one of those things is debatable.

            But you don’t think this is an acceptable comment, becaaaaause….because, according to what you wrote, people who make comments like that are jealous lamewads etc. 
            And, sorry, you DID say, right up there, that pissing off people is kind of the point of Banksy’s work. If you meant to say something else, well, you should have written something else.But if you can’t own your own comments, that’s not really my problem.

          6. @boingboing-5e751896e527c862bf67251a474b3819:disqus : Go right ahead and continue your straw man.. None of us will notice. You selectively leave out words or phrases that would make your argument entirely incorrect. This isn’t your typical site full of readers without critical thinking skills and people can see through you, you know.

            all he did was say two things
            Actually he said three things: “Sometimes I think I’m alone in my dislike of Banksy”. I was pretty clear that I took issue with the concept of unoriginality parading as originality.

            Then you misrepresent me by saying you are also sorely missing the point of his work if you think it’s only meant to piss people off. I never said the point is only to piss people off. That would be you rewording my original point to make it better fit your allegation.

      1. I like graffiti when it’s more than the social analogue of a dog peeing to mark its territory. Chavs tagging my gas meter can kindly die in a fire.

        1. So it is only art if the ‘right’ critics say so and it is marketable. Isn’t Banksy also ‘marking (ideological) territory’? Of course, there is always more to it than the mere marking of territory. Maybe you just need an excuse for a little class war?

          1. Pretty much, yes, and there’s nothing class-warish about it. Tagging random stuff with a marker is as much “art” as smashing up a bus stop is theatre, or tweeting your bowel movements in real time is journalism. I’m pretty fucking left wing, if I say so myself, but I have no time for vandalism. Sorry if this offends you.

      2.  re: “I don’t give my permission for marketers to make millions by defacing public places…”

        Except they aren’t defacing anything. They are paying to advertise in approved spots.

        I like graffiti – well, good graffiti – but I’m not going to pretend that MOST of it isn’t shit that makes areas look like shit and costs honest shop owners money getting rid of it. 

        It’s worse in Europe where they deface shit hundreds of years old. I’m like “Don’t you have ANY reverence for your history and culture?”

        1. You’d think so…it’s even worse when there’s only a handful of buildings left intact after the wars/government changes/trigger-happy new capitalists have rolled through…and some douchebag decides those are the walls he’s going to spray his stupid, illegible pseudonym on.

          And then they cry about being persecuted. Somehow I’ve never heard of anyone complain about good graffiti on ugly concrete.

          1. @boingboing-b5af41b269f7d4efc530e7a95cba9750:disqus , regular citizens almost never complain about it. It’s always someone up in management who lumps all grafitti into one bag.

            I think you’re just hung up on trying to make me look bad at this point , by responding as if I were complaning about Banksy. Who wasn’t even the subject of the comment. :P Sorry you don’t like me.

        2. de·face  tr.v. de·faced, de·fac·ing, de·fac·es 1. To mar or spoil the appearance or surface of; disfigure.

          Just because someone paid to disfigure public places does not change the fact that places are made uglier by advertising.

          I’m not going to pretend that MOST of it isn’t shit that makes areas look like shit
          Nor am I. Please respond to the words I write, not the stereotype you imagine me as.

    2. I think Banksy’s greatest flaw is his cult following. The man has a lot of genius ideas, and, like any human being, a lot of mediocre ones. But cult law decrees that anything attributed to him is pure gold, and forbids criticism.

      In other words, his fans make him look like a douche.

        1. Lol! I haven’t seen many douchey Beatles fans around recently, but I don’t have much of a social life. 

          [disclaimer: I know all the songs by heart]

  5. You’re not alone, Dom. Banksy annoys me. As Charlie Brooker says “his work looks dazzlingly clever to idiots.” As for the sixth form politics, I’ll buy his commitment to his embarrassingly simplistic and/or confused political messages when he stops selling Banksy:the Brand in art galleries for six figure sums.

    1. Charlie Brooker… who is he? who cares? I like Banksy & I graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Arts which would make me a more credible art critic than some pathetic attention-seeking fool with a BA.

  6. So it’s cool when Banksy uses other people’s pop culture images in his remixes, but not cool when he includes other people’s words in his remixes? Just trying to understand what I’m supposed to think.

    1. I’d say remixed images are far more recogniseable than remixed words, especially in street art where the point is often in using well-known icons which don’t really require any credits- they are already a signature of their creator. It doesn’t quite draw the line between cool and not cool (not sure what does, really), but the nuance is important.

  7. I thought when I read the headline: “Great! Somebody gets accused of something and trashed by a bunch of people who dislike him, then the retraction comes out and no one sees it.” But I was so very wrong. A bunch of people who don’t like him jumped on and trashed him some more. Justice is served.

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