Feb 22, 2008

Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Marie Curie, and Jake Burton... wait, what?

The email below arrived in our inbox yesterday. Apparently some people are quite riled up over a new kids' book that is part of an "Inventions and Discoveries" series that highlights key innovators. Among the likes of Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Jonas Salk sits Jake Burton. And some people (including the high-profile pro snowboarder we got this from) aren't too happy about that.

"Industry Insider,

If you are unaware, check out the linked images of this Dr. Seuss-style kid's book, available at school libraries and Amazon.com. Burton has teamed up with a kids' book publisher to create their skewed version of snowboard history -- for very young kids to "learn" from in early elementary school. Probably so that they'll be inclined to buy Burton product as they get older. If you read this cartoon book, despite its
after-the-fact footnotes, it is clear that Burton is trying to brainwash little
kids these days that Jake invented snowboarding. They compare him to
Edison, Alexander Graham Bell and a bunch of other historic inventors.
In the footnotes, they even spell Tom Sims name wrong "Tim Sims".

The name of the book is "Jake Burton and The Snowboard".

Here is a link to where you can buy the book on Amazon.com:

Please forward this message to anyone who you think cares about
Burton twisting snowboarding's history for their own gain, and post
it on any blogs you participate on. If you don't care, delete this message."

Our lives surely wouldn't be the same without the advent of the snowboard, but his inclusion in this series does seem a little grand to us. But, thats sort of beside the point here. The real debate is whether or not Jake Burton deserves recognition for the invention of the snowboard.

And, we'd really love to know, was this book published with Burton's (the man and the company) approval, or is he of a status now where these types of things can be written without his consent?

We'd love to hear any more info/opinions out there...


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Anonymous said...

This book was completely done without the knowledge of Burton. Jake would never claim this and feels, like everybody else, that this is misleading. If you actually read the book the person who helped consult this (without Burton's knowledge) is Lee Crane formerly from Transworld.

This smear campaign was done by a student who actually never saw the book or contacted anybody at Burton. He is making lots of assumptions.

BB said...

Anonymous comments are bullshit.

While I don't know anything about the author of the books history or background, I know who the un-named pro is who called it out.

It wasn't a student.

tundrah said...


we don't know that it wasn't a student who started it and said pro just cut and pasted and added his own flair... i have serious doubts he could have written that email himself! :)

PS. you obviously need to brush up on your group Y rules--ie PLAY NICE! i'm gonna drive down to North La Jolla and smack you for scaring away other members...