THREE IMPORTANT REASONS NOT TO BUY COUNTERFEIT OR PIRATED PRODUCTS
Most people in the United States who knowingly buy counterfeit products do it simply because they don’t understand why they shouldn’t. Professionals in our business, at a minimum, should explain at every opportunity the three reasons not to buy counterfeit or pirated products. Most people, regardless of education level, do not know this information.
The three reasons no one should buy counterfeits or pirated goods and my thoughts on what to convey:
Although manufactured primarily in China, the effects of counterfeit products are global. The People’s Republic of China is one of the worst sources of violations of IP rights in the world. According to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, China and Hong-Kong, the latter of which is a significant transshipment hub, “have been dominating global trade in counterfeit goods” (OECD/EUIPO, 2019 Trends in Trade in Counterfeit and Pirated Goods). These counterfeit products displace genuine goods, often manufactured in developing countries. Although some steps are being taken in China and elsewhere, there is no reasonable expectation that the flow of counterfeit goods will significantly lessen anytime soon. We need to complement interdiction efforts with a concerted effort to raise consumer awareness of the dangers of counterfeit products to do what we can to reduce demand. This starts with dispelling the misconceptions that people may have, because, in fact, counterfeit products are not safe to use, the profits go to bad people, and counterfeit sales undermine economies.
THE BRAND PROTECTION PROFESSIONAL | MARCH 2020 | VOLUME 5 NUMBER 1
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