However, it is important to note that Miffy, a rabbit character very similar to Hello Kitty, was created in 1955, 19 years before Hello Kitty, by Dick Bruna in the Netherlands (Miffy's Dutch name is Nijntje). Dick himself thinks that Hello Kitty is a clear copy of Miffy, as he noted in the July 31, 2008 edition of the British paper The Daily Telegraph:"'That,' he says darkly, 'is a copy [of Miffy], I think. I don't like that at all. I always think, "No, don't do that. Try to make something that you think of yourself'.'"
Perhaps it is important to give credit where it is due - Japan owes its current character aesthetic to Dick Bruna,whose Miffy is often mistakenly thought of as a Japanese creation today. (Japan has, however, characteristically worked very hard to mass-produce a huge number of characters based on this aesthetic, though, which has ironically ultimately resulted in the very misconception that that aesthetic is natively Japanese.)