Big Brother vs The Glass House - Is the Lawsuit Merited?

The Lawsuit

The new ABC show The Glass House has CBS up in arms over a potential Big Brother copyright infringement. All things considered, they might actually have a good case against ABC. Some people believe that there are a few too many similarities to simply disregard it. ABC is disregarding it, though. The Glass House premieres on June 18th at 10pm est whether CBS likes it or not... unless they can get it shut down.

The Evidence

The biggest red herring, to me, is the fact that ABC has people working on this project that used to work on Big Brother. It's not just a few people, either. It's a whopping 19 former Big Brother employees, two of which used to be producers on the show. That's pretty significant in my opinion. While ABC says that it has nothing to do with copying Big Brother, CBS believes that it does since the show is so similar to Big Brother. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's usually a duck. Or a very disturbed person.

The premise of the show is identical to Big Brother, if you ignore the mechanics. You have a bunch of strangers living together and two contestants are in danger of being evicted every week. Over time, contestants are weeded out and the last one standing wins the grand prize. Contestants aren't allowed to interact with the outside world aside from what the show allows. Competitions are a big part in determining who's up for eviction. Lets not forget the fact that both shows have live streaming available, though it's actually part of the gameplay in The Glass House instead of a perk for paying subscribers in Big Brother's case.

The voting process is basically the biggest difference and it's what ABC is using to prove that their show isn't ripping off of Big Brother. You see, while it's completely up to the houseguests to decide who stays and who goes in Big Brother, The Glass House relies on votes from the viewers. The only time the houseguests get to influence this is when they vote on one of the people that has to go into limbo, which is the same thing as being nominated for eviction. They can only choose one person from the losing team in a competition and have no control over the other nomination. There's no opportunity for the nominees to take themselves off the block, either.

Final Thoughts

Is this enough to prove CBS's claim? Well, it's not up to America to vote on this one. CBS told ABC to cease and desist and ABC basically gave them the finger and told them to butt out. So CBS is pushing their case and has sued ABC for millions. Only time will tell, but I would put money on CBS winning the case if ABC doesn't settle.

What do you think?

Does CBS have a case?

  • CBS is probably right, ABC ripped them off.
  • ABC is completely innocent, CBS doesn't have a leg to stand on.
See results without voting

Comments 3 comments

gogogo 4 years ago

There is too much of this going on in the world, people who cannot come up with ideas for themselves, look to rip-off others ideas.

Penny 4 years ago

It's at least inspired by BB, but I don't really care. I mean, there's a ton of singing shows that are all basically carbon copies of each other.

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BonnyC 4 years ago from Georgia Author

Penny, you definitely make a good point. Another friend of mine also pointed out how 'The Talk' is a rip off of 'The View'.

My argument to this is that some ideas are so generic that they basically can't claim any rights to the idea. Well, they can, but it's ludicrous. BB is pretty unique, all things considered.

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