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1 Week Ago
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Why is it wrong to buy a fake designer item?
Ok so there sorta is a thread like this, but I'm trying to pose a specific question.
Most of us agree that fakes are a disgrace and that we ought to stay away from them, I certainly think that. But how do fakes affect the brands they try to knock off? After all, people who buy fakes usually can't afford the real thing, so it's not like they're taking customers away from these brands. Does it affect the designer reputation? Is it just disrespectful and unethical to copy someone else's ideas? Are fakes hated because the fashion designers say we should hate them? How far does it go? How close looking to the original does something have to be in order to be considered fake or a copy?
So if you please can, would you try to put into words why it is wrong to wear fakes and copies of designer clothing?

On a side note:
I recall watching an episode of Say Yes To The Dress and this girl was trying on this wedding gown and the fashion designer Pnina Tornai was there, and she looked at this girl and thought she was trying on one of her dresses because it looked a lot like one she had designed. The girl couldn't afford a Pnina Tornai gown. But Pnina got so angry that she picked a similar dress from her collection and said it could be made without the beading and it will fit in the girl's budget. She went up to the girl and told her all of this. So there's one designer's reaction to seeing someone buy a copy of her design.

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Why is it wrong to buy a fake designer item?

Because it encourages somebody else to purchase a real designer item.

And we all know that having a wardrobe full of crap from the Gucci store will do you absolutely no good whatsoever in the game of life.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eugenius View Post
Why is it wrong to buy a fake designer item?

Because it encourages somebody else to purchase a real designer item.

And we all know that having a wardrobe full of crap from the Gucci store will do you absolutely no good whatsoever in the game of life.
I'm confused. Are you being sarcastic?

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^^^ He's a cheeky one, that eugenius...

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Buying a fake is wrong on more levels than most consumers seem to understand. First I think it is best to distinguish a fake from something that was "inspired" by another. A fake to me is something that copies a brand's designs and/or logos/tags/packaging in an attempt to pass off an illegitimate item as one from the original brand. It will be impossible to avoid "inspired" items; where smaller brands create items very similarly (even carbon copies) at a cheaper construction and sell it under their name (i.e. high street brands). The wedding dress sounds like a situation with an "inspired" design.

Buying fakes does hurt a brand directly. In cases where the fakes are made at high quality and sold to customers as the real thing that is taking a sale right from the store. Fakes also help tarnish brands leaving them undesirable to customers that can afford them. Coach knows this very well, they made the mistake of over-saturating the market and this attracted a lot of counterfeit makers. Their logos became synonymous with the counterfeit market of canal street in NYC and that deterred a lot of customers from the brand as they did not want to carry something that was expected to be fake. This does not only happen to brands that oversaturate, I have had friends and clients say no to certain styles of luxury bags (Celine, Chloe, Saint Laurent) because fakes of them are so readily available. As these brands start to lose customers it not only hurt their image it hurts every single worker of that company.

Other reasons buying fakes are bad are the ethical ones. These counterfeits are usually made in some of the most horrid working environments. Yes some established brands have similar conditions but supporting them on any level is not ok. These are made in half hazard factories using dangerous chemicals with very little regulation as most of them are not legal facilities. Another big thing about counterfeits A LOT of people don't know is that in a lot of cases they are used to support major drug and crime groups. Counterfeit is in the arsenal of a lot of these large crime organization. Some use it to smuggle drugs and guns into countries and the profits to fund their operations.

In my opinion buying a fake/counterfeit/knockoff only hurts, the buyer included. Designer apparel and accessories are out of the reach for most of us, but that should be no excuse to buy a fake with another designer's logo and imagery, get something inspired or close. If you truly love a bag you love its design not the logo on it, so if you purposely buy a fake you really just want to parade the brand name. Such shallow consumerism hurts more than it is worth.

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What we are talking about here, as VogueDisciple93 so eloquently explained, is counterfeits .... passing off something as being designed and produced by a specific designer. It's against the law, for good reason.

It's stealing ... just as bad as if you were to break into someone's home and took their laptop and jewelry. Bottom line ... it takes hard earned, well deserved money, out of the designers' pockets.

If the buyer does not know it's a counterfeit, then they are stealing from that buyer too.


Buyers, who knowingly buy counterfeits, are also guilty of stealing from the designer, their employees, and all of their suppliers, too ... because everyone looses the business. Plus, it's basically dishonest ... not a nice trait in someone .....

I don't have an objection to pieces that are "inspired" by a certain line ... because no one is trying to pass it off as the real thing.

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I think VogueDisciple93 hit it spot on. Quite honestly I don't want a coach bag because I've seen more fake ones than real ones. I think too many fakes can subconsciously alter our perception of a brand, which isn't really fair to the designer.

On another note, designer clothing is a symbol of status to me. I have no desire to own a Gucci bag before I reach the point in my life where I can buy it for myself. Buying a fake, that's just sort of… cheating… to me.

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I thought I'd point you in the direction of this blog post: https://antwerpsex.wordpress.com/201...ounterfeiting/

When I read it last year, I found it very revealing.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackkohl View Post
I thought I'd point you in the direction of this blog post: https://antwerpsex.wordpress.com/201...ounterfeiting/

When I read it last year, I found it very revealing.
The sad thing is that this cheap stuff made in sweatshops thing applies to many legitimate retailers and not just counterfeiters. But that post was enlightening, thank you

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Quote:
Originally Posted by squilliam View Post
The sad thing is that this cheap stuff made in sweatshops thing applies to many legitimate retailers and not just counterfeiters.
Completely agree. I'm a retail buyer for a chain in the UK and we produce a lot of own branded products out of the far East, mainly India and China, and Portugal.

It's amazing when you go into factories and see the production line how many designer and premium high street brands are producing out of the same factories that're making fairly low end product (I've seen the factory producing Louboutin, you'd be amazed what else comes out of there).

The markup they put on products is disgusting. It frustrates me when I see designer items in my particular field, and as a buyer I know what it cost to produce, ship, import etc. The extortionate price is inflated purely because of the name stamped on it at the end of the production line, when the product you're getting is no better quality than one being sold in a store down the street at 1/4 of the price.

The quality of many luxury goods brands is going so far downhill these days and so many corners are being cut, save for a few like Hermes who are still hand making. I can understand why people are turning to high-end fakes. Buying a designer item used to be something special - why pay a ridiculous amount for something that isn't worth the price tag?

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There is a downside to inspired products too. Granted, they are not blatant plagierisms, but they appeal to a consumer that actually wants to get luxury, but since it's too expensive, they have to wait a season or two to be able to access it, the soft version way. For example, Alexander McQueen skull scarves where soon replicated with similar aesthetic, but not exactly the same. Everyone who wanted a McQueen one but couldn't afford it, went for the cheap knockoff.
From the viewpoint of the consumer of the real deal, it makes more valuable and desirable to make that expensive buy. Therefore, you are making any product of that brand a status indicator, when originally it was a designed quality product. Now as long as it has that brand, it will be expensive, no matter if it's a random cotton logo t-shirt.
From the viwpoint of the one who makes that inspired piece... It's degrading if you consider they are designers too. Whith all the time spent in copying it and making it more subtle, couldn't they have designed something of their own?
From the one who buys the inspired piece perspective, it means they want something but settle for a cheaper version. Meaning they are consuming an idea, maybe the product or just the status that a recognized brand provides.
And the original designer/brand's as said, it is really disencouraging to think and create something and have someone in a minute steal your work.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by squilliam View Post
Ok so there sorta is a thread like this, but I'm trying to pose a specific question.
Most of us agree that fakes are a disgrace and that we ought to stay away from them, I certainly think that. But how do fakes affect the brands they try to knock off? After all, people who buy fakes usually can't afford the real thing, so it's not like they're taking customers away from these brands. Does it affect the designer reputation? Is it just disrespectful and unethical to copy someone else's ideas? Are fakes hated because the fashion designers say we should hate them? How far does it go? How close looking to the original does something have to be in order to be considered fake or a copy?
So if you please can, would you try to put into words why it is wrong to wear fakes and copies of designer clothing?

On a side note:
I recall watching an episode of Say Yes To The Dress and this girl was trying on this wedding gown and the fashion designer Pnina Tornai was there, and she looked at this girl and thought she was trying on one of her dresses because it looked a lot like one she had designed. The girl couldn't afford a Pnina Tornai gown. But Pnina got so angry that she picked a similar dress from her collection and said it could be made without the beading and it will fit in the girl's budget. She went up to the girl and told her all of this. So there's one designer's reaction to seeing someone buy a copy of her design.

Personally, I think the issue with this comes in when other countries start to mass produce and sell the knock offs due to loose international laws governing copyright infringement on designs. There are entire factories that will copy a designer item, label it designer, and sell it to a corporation in another country to be sold as authentic. The subpar item is then passed off as the real thing to customers and not a whole lot can be done. Its rather appalling...

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Quote:
Originally Posted by VogueDisciple93 View Post
Buying a fake is wrong on more levels than most consumers seem to understand. First I think it is best to distinguish a fake from something that was "inspired" by another. A fake to me is something that copies a brand's designs and/or logos/tags/packaging in an attempt to pass off an illegitimate item as one from the original brand. It will be impossible to avoid "inspired" items; where smaller brands create items very similarly (even carbon copies) at a cheaper construction and sell it under their name (i.e. high street brands). The wedding dress sounds like a situation with an "inspired" design.
If the design is so close that the designer herself was confused, that sounds more than 'inspired by.'

I believe DVF had proposed that runway knockoffs not be allowed until a subsequent season. But the bridal market is different ... the seasonal concept doesn't apply as well there.

When the Hiltons are spotted with fakes, you know the issue is not that they can't afford the real thing. (Of course, many who can afford the real thing are instead given it for free.)

I will say that the vast number of Coach knockoffs doesn't seem to deter most people. It wouldn't deter me either if they had anything I really liked--but I also have a personal policy against obvious logos. Some of the people I work with are quite proud of their Coach bags.

I would love to watch a documentary that asked people carrying both fakes and items that are often faked about their thought process. To me the first says "I'm an idiot" and the second "I'm a sheep."

I used to work with someone who had a very good fake Paddington. It fooled me, and I'm sure part of the reason was that I knew she could afford a real one. I guess to her it was a 'smart' way to cut costs. She also drove a huge luxury SUV. I'm always surprised to hear about the cost-cutting measures people take to afford their gas-guzzlers. As I think about it, she also dyed her hair and was a big fan of injections.

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