When Ideas Generate Value: How LEGO Profitably Democratized Its Relationship with Fans

  • Vlada Botoric
Part of the Springer Series on Cultural Computing book series (SSCC)


In a basement filled with buildings made of LEGO bricks, a young boy creates his own models. Adventures are being played out by his own imagination but on his father’s LEGO setting. When that came into his father’s eyes, he immediately starts to chastise his son for ruining the setting by creating hodgepodges of different models and playing themes. The story that a young boy created was actually the plot of The Lego Movie (2014) where an ordinary construction worker Emmet had been prophesied to save the LEGO universe from the tyrannical Lord Business. Later in the basement, the boy’s father looked at his son’s creations again and got impressed. Having realized that his son based the evil Lord Business on him, the father changes opinion and allows his son to play with his bricks however he sees them fit. The LEGO Movie, a computer-animated adventure comedy film, successfully managed to be a powerful story about the drawbacks of conformity while celebrating individuality and the creative potential of imagination. “Creative individuals are no longer viewed as iconoclasts; they are new mainstream” (Florida, Rise of the creative class — revisited: 10th anniversary edition — revised and expanded, Basic Books, New York, 2012) in the emergence of “a new economic democracy in which we all have a lead role” (Tapscott and Williams, Wikinomics, Penguin, New York, 2007). According to Florida, that creative ethos that molds the core of our identities is critical for generating creativity and commercial innovations in a “produsage-based democratic model” (Bruns, Blogs, Wikipedia, Second Life, and beyond: from production to produsage. Digital formations, 45. Peter Lang, New York, 2008); the real driving force is the rise of human creativity as the key factor in our economy and society. Both at work and in other spheres of our lives, we value creativity more highly and cultivate it more intensely than we ever before (Florida, Rise of the creative class — revisited: 10th anniversary edition — revised and expanded, Basic Books, New York, 2012).


Business Model Open Innovation Creative Class Lead User Participatory Culture 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Aesthetics and CommunicationAarhus UniversityAarhusDenmark

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