Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Recession + E-commerce = Counterfeiting

Robert Klara wrote a very nice article: 'The Fight Against Fakes' for Brandweek.

His article is about:
  • the economic crisis and advent of e-commerce that prove to be a fatal mix for brands; trademarks are increasingly being infringed upon; if global dimension of this fatal mix is well described by Mr Klara: "The same Wild West quality of the Internet that makes it so enticing to shoppers is also why it's most terrifying for upscale brands, most of which have little hope of foiling the sale of a fake handbag made in China and bought by a customer in South Carolina from a Web site based in Estonia."
  • consumer education campaigns such as and Fake Watches Are for Fake People (see picture);
  • brands that produce mass-market extensions of their high-end lines in China, so that they are easier to copy;
  • ACTA (anti-counterfeiting treaty agreement);
  • At the end of the article Mr Klara mentions luxury good firms such as Luis Vuitton and l'Oréal as plaintiffs against eBay about the question who is liable in case of goods offered on eBay that are intellectual property infringements. Mr Klara writes: "Some legal experts predict this latest ruling from London will effectively end suits against eBay." I believe that some legal experts predict this, but I do not agree with them.
Mr Klara interviewed representatives of intellectual property firm Marks & Clerk, fashion magazine Harper's Bazaar, CMO Council (council for chief marketing officers), INTA (International Trademark Association), Luxury Institute, Federation of Swiss Watches, Swiss watchmaker Les Cubeurs and the Fragrance Foundation.

Good article, read here.

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