The beauty of Lego is the pain of Lego. Sticking one brick to another and constructing abstract and unusual shapes is joyful. Making pretend guns or space ships all part of the glory of the plastic. Where Lego falls down is in its deconstruction, the pulling apart of those tiny blocks.
Jon looked at his impressive collection of bricks which he had spent the last 4 nights sorting it all into colours and size. Jon loved organising and he enjoyed nothing more than clear defined areas for each coloured brick. His plan was to buy some special coloured boxes so he knew where everything went.
The trouble was, there were never any boxes of the same colour. The red was never red enough to match, the blue boxes were too pale and the yellow, well he was disgusted at the choice out there. His only choice was to melt down a bunch of bricks and make his own box.
Having studied plastic dog making at Oxford University he knew how to melt plastic. He also knew how to then make boxes from said plastic in a process he called “boxes”. It was almost an art form because melting the brinks can change their colour, which knowing Jon how I do, is worst possible outcome. An off blue box would be devastating.
What followed was… well let’s just say it was messy and sticky and most of what was produced ended up inside a pink box. Jon did manage eventually to make his own Lego toy box. I was very surprised by his efforts and so were Lego.
Like an unaware chimp he put his creation on the interwebs for people to find including a how to video to make your own box out of 42,382 Lego bricks. Before I continue I know what you are thinking, 42,382 bricks is a hell of a lot. To put that into context it’s around 50kgs which is the same as an adult North Pacific Giant Octopus. Note the word “Giant”.
Anyway Lego contact Jon and asked about his build. They wanted to create their own boxes to hold around 1,500 blocks for use in the retail stores around the world. Jon had a meeting with Lego which lasted around 3 days. Yet they failed to agree a terms on how Jon was to be paid. Jon wanted payment in a lifetime’s supply of bricks but Lego wanted to pay cash, well a large lump sum.
What Jon didn’t realise is that when he uploaded his videos and how too’s on to the internet he lost all control of them. They belonged to the world and not Jon. Lego didn’t realise this either originally. It was only pointed out to them when copycat boxes started to appear online. Sure the colours weren’t the same but they did what they should.
Lego pulled out of the deal two weeks later citing “Legal issues”. Jon was distraught. Lego went on to copyright the process and as such banned all uses from melting any future Lego blocks. Jon had not only missed his big payout but also screwed the world over from ever melting Lego again.