A few years ago, I wrote a post about how I make my children hold hands when I’m trying to break up the constant arguing and bickering. It went somewhat viral-ish and had lots of discussion ranging from “that is so awesome I need to try that” to “this woman is ruining her children forever!” Now, every time I see another parent posting photos of her children holding hands, I think to myself, “They are using *my* hand-holding punishment!”
Now, here’s the thing about that. When I say that it is mine, I don’t really mean that I invented this idea. I mean, I’m sure parents have been doing this for longer than I have actually been a parent. So, it may very well be that they saw my post floating around various forms of social media and tried it—or it’s possible that they learned this trick elsewhere. I don’t own it, even if I introduced it to a lot of people.
Now, there was actually a point to all of this rambling.
Meet Drake, who will always be known—to me—as Wheelchair Jimmy from Degrassi.
So, it seems that Drake’s song The Motto uses the phrase YOLO, which stands, of course, for You Only Live Once. Because of this fact, he believes that he has invented the phrase and is therefore entitled to royalties for any and all products that are using the famous acronym.
The famous rapper took to Instagram, where he posts photos under the username @champagnepapi. “Walgreens…you gotta either chill or cut the cheque,” he wrote underneath a photo of a case displaying YOLO hats and caps. And then underneath a photo of a Charlie Brown and Snoppy t-shirt, he wrote: “Macy’s…same goes for you.”
But, here’s the thing.
He didn’t INVENT it, just like I didn’t invent the hand-holding punishment. I would go out on a limb to say that the phrase rose in popularity because of Drake’s song and tweet about YOLO. In fact, social media is a really good vehicle for helping things spread like wildfire. But he doesn’t own copyright on the phrase. And yet, here he is looking for some royalties from Walgreens and Macy’s.
I wonder if he’s looking for royalties from Zac Efron’s hand.
Or from The Strokes and their 2006 song, unsurprisingly entitled You Only Live Once. Apparently, when the song was released, the band asked fans to request the song on various radio stations and also put the songs on their MySpace pages (MySpace?? I wonder if Drake even knows what MySpace is.) This plan was called: OPERATION YOLO.
Or YOLO, a restaurant in Florida that opened in 2008.
Or the user named ‘Colin’ who added it to urbandictionary.com in 2004.
Or the clothing line YOLO, that was launched in 2004, and was invented by Adam Mesh in the third season of the NBC reality show called Average Joe.
What do you think? Think Drake’s got a legit case—or is he just being ego-greedy?