The New York Times gets to play catch up today with the blogosphere (and the New York Post) in "Is Imitation Flattery, Theft or Just Coincidence?", reporting on the Eminem i-pod ad story broken on Adfreak and reported here on The Spunker and a pile of other places. To recap: Eminem i-pod ads by TWBA look extremely like these Lugz ads three years ago by another agency. The blogobuzz prompted the senior creative of Avrett Free Ginsberg, original creators of the Lugz "Arrow" spot, to write Apple and TBWA, "It is often said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and in most cases I would agree...But sometimes, imitation crosses the line." In a statement, TBWA repeatedly denied stealing the ideas, " "We can assure you that the 'Detroit' spot was created without any reference by TBWA/Chiat/Day to the 'Arrow' spot. Our intention was to develop a campaign that was a natural and independent evolution of the 'Silhouettes' campaign. Any similarities between the two spots are regrettable." Reading the conversation over in the Adfreak comments section of the original post might have you thinking otherwise. Pretty swell that an idea floated on a bunch of blogs provoked real-world controversy.