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Petition to return private photos and home video footage to Olivia and Dhani
20 June 2014
9.06pm
bewareofchairs
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A few days ago the website Maverick Music put up items George supposedly gave to a friend for auction, included in the items are some private photos of George and Dhani as well as a 40 minute-long private home movie of their home in Maui. Along with this being a huge breech of their privacy, these items should really be given to Olivia and Dhani IMO. The idea of the video footage in particular being in the hands of anyone else bothers me a lot. It's another case of people wanting any piece of the Beatles they can get for the novelty/money without even considering that they are human beings with families.

There's currently a petition (set up by a couple of Beatles fans on tumblr) you can sign if you have a moment. I'm not sure how effective these things are, but it's worth a try. 

20 June 2014
9.16pm
parlance
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Perhaps out of respect, we shouldn't even link to the items?

parlance

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bewareofchairs

Beware of sadness. It can hit you. It can hurt you. Make you sore and what is more, that is not what you are here for. - George

Check out my fan video for Paul's song "Appreciate" at YouTube and Vimeo.

20 June 2014
9.28pm
bewareofchairs
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parlance said
Perhaps out of respect, we shouldn't even link to the items?

parlance

Good point. I edited them out.

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parlance
25 June 2014
3.41pm
Matt Busby
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I got a thank you from one of the sponsors of the petition.  Sadly, it appears only 354 people have signed it.  It mentions a "constructive discussion" on livejournal, not sure if I should post a direct link here.  Comments are divided between solidly on the Harrisons' side, solidly on the side of those who possess the items, and a compromise that would allow as close to a win-win as our society can get (Harrisons pay the possessors a reasonable sum, far less than a lawsuit would cost, less than the items could be sold for, but recognizing that a legitimate claim to ownership may exist, as well as the distinct possibility that the items could suddenly "disappear").  The items allegedly have well-documented provenance that George gave them away, and if that's the case a lawsuit could prove nothing but a waste of money on the Harrisons' part.  Perhaps a tasteful, privacy-respecting museum is an option (don't get me wrong, I think the family should get the stuff, just trying to think realistically about our money-hungry society). 

Or we could hope someone with more money than he could ever spend (Paul?) might buy them and give them to Olivia.  Not sure of their exact financial position but I'm sure Paul could afford it without blinking.  And Paul is definitely on their side in this. 

I like this quotation from mollybeakers on livejournal:

"I would think attitude would have much to do with it. If these folks are treating these items like a lottery ticket, sue the shit out of them and get yer stuff back, Harrisons. No room for blatant greed in Beatleville.

Now in the case of Paul's original Hofner bass? NO NO NO. Anyone caught with that particular piece of Beatle history should be immediately tarred, feathered, and thrown in jail. I don't care who you are. lol."

I can't help but include this little tidbit from someone who viewed the stuff...despite it being personal information about George, it's not like anyone would care or benefit from the information and it's not negative.  Only hard core fans like us would be interested, because we're interested in everything Beatles-related!

George had a small tattoo on his chest

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bewareofchairs
Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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25 June 2014
4.40pm
parlance
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Matt Busby said

George had a small tattoo on his chest

 

It's a temporary one, btw.

parlance

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Matt Busby

Beware of sadness. It can hit you. It can hurt you. Make you sore and what is more, that is not what you are here for. - George

Check out my fan video for Paul's song "Appreciate" at YouTube and Vimeo.

25 June 2014
4.46pm
thisbirdhasflown
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I think that Olivia and Dhani should have their home movies back. It's their private life. It's okay if Olivia and Dhani agree, but if it's released against their will, that's a violation of privacy! And @Matt Busby "So I sing the song of love... Julia."

thisbirdhasflown

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Matt Busby
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26 June 2014
1.31am
Matt Busby
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thisbirdhasflown said
I think that Olivia and Dhani should have their home movies back. It's their private life. It's okay if Olivia and Dhani agree, but if it's released against their will, that's a violation of privacy! And @Matt Busby "So I sing the song of love... Julia."

thisbirdhasflown

@thisbirdhasflown, the problem is that the facts are in dispute.  Maverick claims they have provenance, in the form of letters from George giving them the items or similar evidence.  Some claim the items were taken with less than explicit permission, and some say there's a moral obligation to protect the family's privacy under any circumstances.  etc.  Apparently Olivia and Dhani were not aware of the sale until a third party told them.

Great love song, Julia, isn't it?   Seashell eyes...windswept smile...calls me

Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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26 June 2014
12.43pm
thisbirdhasflown
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Matt Busby said

thisbirdhasflown said
I think that Olivia and Dhani should have their home movies back. It's their private life. It's okay if Olivia and Dhani agree, but if it's released against their will, that's a violation of privacy! And @Matt Busby "So I sing the song of love... Julia."

thisbirdhasflown

@thisbirdhasflown, the problem is that the facts are in dispute.  Maverick claims they have provenance, in the form of letters from George giving them the items or similar evidence.  Some claim the items were taken with less than explicit permission, and some say there's a moral obligation to protect the family's privacy under any circumstances.  etc.  Apparently Olivia and Dhani were not aware of the sale until a third party told them.

Great love song, Julia, isn't it?   Seashell eyes...windswept smile...calls me

I do hope the Harrisons find their evidence of provenance. I still consider it a privacy violation, even with said "provenance" though.

P.S. @Matt Busby I'm glad you like Julia too!

By hook or by crook, I'll be last in this book.
26 June 2014
6.24pm
Matt Busby
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I couldn't figure out how to cross post, so I am pointing to this message from the same topic in another thread in an attempt to bring it to the rightful place.  So this may seem like it's "out of the blue" but I think anyone watching should be clued in.  Here is the latest from Alyssa and Andrea, the petition's sponsors.

It indicates that Maverick is willing to work with (or pay lip service to) people who want the "right" outcome (the Harrisons getting their stuff back).  However, so far I guess about 5 people have signed on to contribute to return them to the original owners, which isn't enough.  Of course Maverick is not going to just give up this cash cow.  They seem to be waiting for the Harrisons to contact them, and say they must not be interested in bringing the memorabilia home.  My guess would be more like Olivia and Dhani are keeping their mouths shut in case of a potential lawsuit.  I'm on the notification list for updates (as all of you good beatlemaniacs should be after you sign the petition!).  I do encourage all of you to be informed on this - legally, the issue is much more complicated than "stolen personal stuff", while for most of us fans it's a moral issue - it's their private lives and they should own it.  I would love to know what Olivia, Dhani, and their lawyers are thinking - the must know about this by now. 

I'm sure it's not the first time something like this has happened to them and perhaps they've learned to accept it as part of the legacy and tune it out. That would probably be what George would want, as acceptance, not belligerence,  is the key to contentment.  The other extreme would be spending the rest of their lives worrying about a never-ending stream of private stuff coming into public view.  I guess that is part of the price of being family of the most influential musicians in, well...history.

Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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26 June 2014
6.52pm
parlance
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Matt Busby said
I couldn't figure out how to cross post, 

Nothing fancy, btw. We just copy and paste.

parlance

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Matt Busby

Beware of sadness. It can hit you. It can hurt you. Make you sore and what is more, that is not what you are here for. - George

Check out my fan video for Paul's song "Appreciate" at YouTube and Vimeo.

26 June 2014
7.06pm
Ron Nasty
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My problem with this situation is, what if they truly were gifts by George to someone who now wants to sell them? The various Beatles have made gifts of many many things to many many people over the years. I obviously believe that Olivia and Dhani should have first refusal, but I have seen nothing to support the idea that the owner does not legally own them, so to call them things like "stolen" is wrong. We have seen many items go up for auction that one member of the group or another (or their estates) have questioned the legal ownership of, and they have been withdrawn and returned. Unless Olivia and Dhani challenge ownership, I see nothing wrong.

Let's forget this is items from George Harrison. Let's pretend this is you or me, and somebody has given us a gift, I'd expect to be able to sell it if I wanted to, wouldn't you? It shouldn't matter who the gift was from, just that the person who owned it originally made a gift of it. I have had lots of gifts over the years, I wouldn't want to have to check with those who gave me them what I could do with them.

Maybe I'm out of step on this though...

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27 June 2014
12.20am
Musketeer Gripweed (kezron9)
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Ron Nasty said
My problem with this situation is, what if they truly were gifts by George to someone who now wants to sell them? The various Beatles have made gifts of many many things to many many people over the years. I obviously believe that Olivia and Dhani should have first refusal, but I have seen nothing to support the idea that the owner does not legally own them, so to call them things like "stolen" is wrong. We have seen many items go up for auction that one member of the group or another (or their estates) have questioned the legal ownership of, and they have been withdrawn and returned. Unless Olivia and Dhani challenge ownership, I see nothing wrong.

Let's forget this is items from George Harrison. Let's pretend this is you or me, and somebody has given us a gift, I'd expect to be able to sell it if I wanted to, wouldn't you? It shouldn't matter who the gift was from, just that the person who owned it originally made a gift of it. I have had lots of gifts over the years, I wouldn't want to have to check with those who gave me them what I could do with them.

Maybe I'm out of step on this though...

The Harrisons have more than enough money to fight this or buy it back if they wished. I know George does have a history of giving away memorabilia with signed documentation. I know George helped Lilly Evans, Mals widow by sending a signed fax about a 1958 Hofner Senator that was Johns. I am not sure if he gave her the guitar or if it was given to Mal and he was just verifying. He did this so that Lilly would be able to eventually action it if she wished. I think it was auctioned in 2009 and the verification letter was from 1982. I am just stating this because it shows a pretense of George helping friends/employees to sell items for profit. http://www.theguardian.com/music/2009/jul/02/johh-lennon-guitar-auctioned    Also just this year Paul had an action blocked. http://www.rollingstone.com/mu.....h-20140321  It was for the lyrics to "Arrow Through Me" (love the song) and the capes they wore in Help!. Apparently an old nanny or maid claimed Linda gifted them, but Paul claims it was stolen and he would never gift the Help! capes away which I believe. But basically it shows that if it wasnt truly gifted with verification the Harrisons can easily have it blocked. The fact that they have said nothing and there are claims they were gifted would give the owner the right to do what they wanted with them. Also Georges past of verifying leads me to believe that it was most likely gifted. For all we know George had hundreds of family videos, so one would not be a big deal. So I think @Ron Nasty is making a good point. 

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28 June 2014
6.01pm
bewareofchairs
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Ron Nasty said
My problem with this situation is, what if they truly were gifts by George to someone who now wants to sell them? The various Beatles have made gifts of many many things to many many people over the years. I obviously believe that Olivia and Dhani should have first refusal, but I have seen nothing to support the idea that the owner does not legally own them, so to call them things like "stolen" is wrong. We have seen many items go up for auction that one member of the group or another (or their estates) have questioned the legal ownership of, and they have been withdrawn and returned. Unless Olivia and Dhani challenge ownership, I see nothing wrong.

Let's forget this is items from George Harrison. Let's pretend this is you or me, and somebody has given us a gift, I'd expect to be able to sell it if I wanted to, wouldn't you? It shouldn't matter who the gift was from, just that the person who owned it originally made a gift of it. I have had lots of gifts over the years, I wouldn't want to have to check with those who gave me them what I could do with them.

Maybe I'm out of step on this though...

Yes, but, I don't consider a home movie the same as any other gift, and I don't imagine that would be the kind of thing George wanted to be sold for a profit. If it's something Olivia and Dhani don't already own then it would be very precious to them, and if they already have a copy, they'd probably still want it for privacy reasons. According to the people who made the petition, they weren't aware the seller had these items, and as far as I know, aren't aware that they're currently being sold. For me this is mostly about making sure they at least have a say in what happens to something very personal to them.

28 June 2014
11.05pm
Matt Busby
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bewareofchairs said

Yes, but, I don't consider a home movie the same as any other gift, and I don't imagine that would be the kind of thing George wanted to be sold for a profit. If it's something Olivia and Dhani don't already own then it would be very precious to them, and if they already have a copy, they'd probably still want it for privacy reasons. According to the people who made the petition, they weren't aware the seller had these items, and as far as I know, aren't aware that they're currently being sold. For me this is mostly about making sure they at least have a say in what happens to something very personal to them.

Somewhere in all these discussions I read that George gave away many things, with provenance, including home movies.  In fact I think it was an interview with Olivia, that she said he did that often.  One story was that he gave mal (i think) a guitar, then later made sure he gave her certified provenance that it was actually the guitar it claimed to be, so that if she ever needed money, she could get what it was worth.  And this goes along with George's attitude - earthly possessions are just that.  Nothing wrong with enjoying them, but they're transient.

Olivia and Dhani's silence is what puzzles me.  That's why I got the idea maybe they just block this kind of thing out now and not let it bother them.  As parlance I think said, they have the money to buy the stuff back.  That's surely the easiest and cheapest way to return the items to the Harrisons, for them to buy them.  It may be morally wrong, maybe not, but it's definitely the best way in this "material world" we inhabit.  I found this interview with Olivia after the making of Living in the Material World and it gives some insight as to how she might feel about this sale.  For example, she describes finding a cassette labeled "lesson with ravi" and it's the first sitar lesson, and it starts with Ravi saying "ok, let's start here" and she's like "i just think that's so cool".  She's into every detail like we are, and treasures every item she has.  The last thing she says is very telling, about that movie being the end of her obligation to tell George's story to the world.  So on the one hand, she treasures all this kind of stuff and probably would rather have it in her possession; on the other hand, she feels like she's "over it" as far as the constant scrutiny and vigilance that a close Beatle family member has to live with.  At least that's the idea I'm getting from looking into this.

So my ultimate opinion on this atm is this:  Olivia and Dhani must know about the sale by now.  They can buy it themselves if they want.  If they are "over it", then I can see why they are just ignoring this.

Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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4 July 2014
11.31pm
Matt Busby
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Update as of today:

Hello, All!

Just a brief update to let you know that a letter, the petition signatures and comments have all been mailed to Harrisongs thanks to Andrea.

Thank you all again for your continued support.  We hope to hear back from Harrisongs and will inform you all when we have or if we decide to take another course of action.

May Peace and Love be with You All,

Alyssa & Andrea

Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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4 July 2014
11.38pm
Ron Nasty
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As soon as they have Olivia and/or Dhani's support for what they're doing, they'll have my support.

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5 July 2014
1.27am
meanmistermustard
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As long as they respect Olivia and Dhani's decision then i'll be happy. At the end of the day its their call, not the fans.

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5 July 2014
1.44am
vonbontee
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Well, I don't know all the facts regarding the items' provenance and all, but I can't say I'd be happy if Olivia/Dhani attempt to use strong-arm litigious tactics to force the return of items they have no real legal ownership of. If they try to appeal to Maverick Music's altruistic nature to regain possession either by appealing to their scruples or agreeing to a buying price, that'll make me happy.

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5 July 2014
1.53am
Matt Busby
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It seems crazy if not ludicrous that they would try to "force" the items on the Harrisons.  But their talk of "another course of action" makes me wonder exactly what these women are up to.

Half of what I say is meaningless...

And it's making me feel like my trousers are torn

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6 July 2014
3.07am
bewareofchairs
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I wouldn't worry about the people who made the petition. They're very rational and aren't trying to force anything on Olivia and Dhani. I think they're just hoping to get some kind of confirmation on whether they're ok with it or not.

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