Commentary on the Tabs Controversy

What’s Next, Ramen Noodles?

The article said that the RIAA considers tabs copyright-protected information. According to the recording industry, even incorrect tabs and tabs developed by users from listening to songs are its property as “derivative works.”

I started thinking about what it would be like if there were an RIAA for ramen.

The connection seemed obvious, because there are so many varieties of ramen available in so many little restaurants and street stalls here. Ramen is Japan’s pizza — derived from the cuisine of another country (China), popular because it’s both delicious and inexpensive, and available in gourmet versions.

Ramen is culturally important in Japan, and, like music, there is an infinite number of ramen styles, all of which have their committed adherents, copycats and detractors.

[…] There’s a reason that intellectual property laws don’t cover recipes, so for now, ramen may be safe. But with copyright laws that let the music industry shut down sites for teaching people how to play guitar, intellectual property claims against the making of noodles can’t be far behind.