I feel that an informed consumer can make educated decisions about their purchases. Thus, I’m sharing this information that I had to read for one of my classes last semester with you.
Fashion counterfeiting is defined as illegal, deceptive copying of registered logos, brand names, or ornamentation. In deceptive counterfeiting cases, consumers are unaware the product is fake and believe that they are purchasing an authentic item – more relevant in nonfashion product areas (consumer electronic parts, auto parts, pharmaceuticals). In nondeceptive counterfeiting, consumers either know or strongly suspect that the product is not genuine but purchase the product anyway (u’ll see these folks in your local chinatown).
My POV prior to being informed:
Counterfeiting is harmless and if someone wants that fake Gucci, do you. I personally, would not indulge in the purchase of a fake bag (from the article, I’ve learned that tons of things are counterfeit beyond handbags, but to me, they are probably the biggest offense), albeit tempting. $1,200 for a bag is outrageous but if you can’t afford it…there are other non-fake options. As for the hustlers, pimping the product, just like the consumer…no harm…no foul.
Points from the articles:
- estimated that up to 7 percent of our annual world trade – $600 billion worth – is counterfit or pirated
- fakes are believed to be directly responsible for the loss of more than 750,000 American jobs
- everything from baby formula to medicine is counterfeited, with tragic results
- counterfeits and the crime syndicates they work with deal in human trafficking, child labor, and gang warfare
- counterfeiting is used to launder money, and the money has been linked to truly sinister deeds such as terrorism
- “I remember walking into an assembly plant in Thailand a couple of years ago and seeing six or seven little children all under 10 years old, sitting on the floor assembling counterfeit leather handbags…The owners had broken the children’s legs and tied the lower leg to the thigh so the bones wouldn’t mend” , a passage from the book, Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster
- counterfeiting is a part of the economic black market, in that perpetrators pay no or few taxes and incur no or few business costs resulting in a loss of government revenues
My POV now:
I cannot walk through Chinatown without rolling my eyes. I’m not going to force anyone not to make the purchase that they’d like to purchase but I will do my best to inform people that buying counterfeits adds all of the above. I was highly upset that this illegal activity robs the government of money…money that has to be made up elsewhere. As a designer and future business owner, I’d hate to see my stuff on the streets.
What was your POV before being informed of what counterfeitting entails? What is it now? Would/Do you buy counterfeit goods and why?