Everyone, what can we do to stop counterfeiters?

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
Sorry this is so long, but this is a major problem....and I am sick of it! This is my rant.....

You guys, I am so bothered recently. I have never spent much time on You Tube, but have recently been watching a lot of bag videos. I love to see people's bag collections, reveals, and for some silly reason I especially love the "What's in my bag" videos. The issue I am getting to obviously is the multitude of videos on there with people bragging about counterfeit bags.

So, there is one woman in particular, I will not name her, but she is American, and has quite a few videos about her counterfeits Louis Vuittons Her helpful instructions if you also want to purchase a bag from where she got hers is "PM me and I will send you the website."

I was shocked and horrified at the sheer number of people requesting that she PM them the site. She has many videos on there, but on just one video site there were 130 plus requests from people wanting to also purchase, they also made some other comments too, which I will get to in a minute.

I am assuming that most of these people requesting the site are American, because I saw a few posts about how some people would love the site but they lived in the UK, and purchasing, not just selling, counterfeit goods is illegal there, and they were afraid of getting caught.

The amount of sheer ignorance in the response posts almost makes me physically ill. Their attitude seems to be that they are pulling one over on rich old Louis Vuitton....ha ha. While it is true that counterfeit goods do negatively affect companies, what none of them seem to grasp is the simple concept, that if selling these bags is illegal, then there is nobody to regulate workers in an illegal industry.

Have they ever once given thought to who is making these bags? I worry enough about who is making my *legal* products, because they are made in other countries with other worker standards that we all know are not as high as the US, but at least there is *some*worker regulation.....in an illegal production line overseas, do buyers really think there is a lot of care given to these poor people?

From what I understand, from reading books and articles on counterfeiting, it is only a part of a giant glob of organized crime and illegal activity, so they generally have plenty of access to workers. Sometimes it is by finding them in poor areas of foreign countries, and convincing them they will have a better life if they sign themselves into illegal but scary-to-them contracts that force them to work outside their home country for a certian number of years and are basically just given some housing, if that, and are never able to even send money home to their families, which is what made them sign the contract in the first place. They are often women, they may be beaten if they object, or sexually assulted. And they are the lucky ones.

The unlucky are obtained from the sex/child trafficking trade that these people dabble deeply in. Some undercover investigators have found teenagers and children chained to objects like old ciggarette machines while they make the products that bring in the profits. They often simply end up dead. They may get sick and die, may cause trouble for their captors, and be killed, it is not a situation that many survive to tell about. They are considered property, slaves, to be done with as their owner pleases.

Speaking of the profits, where do these people think their money goes? To pay the chained up children? Ummmm....no. It goes to pay for more human trafficking, drug trade, illegal arms trade, to terrorist organizations, including Al Queada and more.

So what happens if someone objects to these sickening You Tube videos? I suspected, but thought I would at least try. I put up one post simply begging these people to consider for a minute who might be making these products, and to ask themselves if they could, with a clear heart, purchase from an illegal and unregulated organization. I did not criticize them or her, I simply begged them to at least think about it.

My post was promptly removed and I was blocked. Of course. I guess a few people have tried to get that particular woman to quit buying counterfeit because she has a "rant" video where she is "sick of being criticized for buying fakes" and that if she bought real bags "I would be criticized for spending too much money on a bag, so I can't win". Yeah right. I am sure you have experienced that problem. I noticed the rant never mentioned the illegal industry she was supporting, she was mad because people were calling her cheap.

Arrrrgggh! This is so much bigger than "being cheap"! How can people be so short sighted? What can we do to educate the public guys? If it is illegal to purchase counterfeit in the UK, thank God, and it should be in the US as well. Hopefully that would decrease the overall amount of counterfeit bags, shoes etc. on ebay and other trading sites as well. We should punish the buyer just as much as the seller, especially when they *knowingly* buy from an illegal replica site. Some people from the UK were talking about how they had friends who had been fined for buying from street counterfeit vendors, and they were scared to purchase from the website this woman uses. Good! I feel like we need that in this country.

How can we educate the public without them shutting down? I tried with my post to put it in a gentle way. Did not criticize, just asked people to think for a minute. Are that many people that hopelessly stupid and uncaring? They can't be. Notice that nowhere in this post did I use the word "fake". I think that words have power and meaning. These bags are not just "fake"......they are illegal and illegal for a reason and they contibute to the misery and deaths of innocent people all over the world. Their definition is counterfeit. (although if reponders use the word fake for the sake of simplicity I understand)

This post is on the LV board because in the handbag world it is the most imitated. The sheer amount of display and desire for counterfeit Louis Vuitton on the internet is astounding. I have found on other different kinds of forums, when doing a general search, people talking about buying LV for whatever reason, and the answer to their query most every time is, "Just buy a fake".

It is also on here because this is where I mostly hang lately, and you guys are such a sharp bunch. I noted that many people who posted on this woman's video sites stated that they had "real" Coach bags because they could go to the outlet and get them for a hundred bucks or less (still, I do see a ton of counterfeit Coach) but there was no way they would ever pay for a real LV, they were more than willing to pay $200 for the counterfeit bags....that is about what this woman says they cost on the website she uses.

Any ideas on educating the public?
 

nerimanna

Member
Nov 9, 2012
1,497
127
hmm... this is a very touchy subject that is very hard to deal with. let me start by saying that the selling (and/or buying in some countries) of counterfeit bags, specifically louis vuitton, is illegal because it deals with piracy and intellectual property issues - pretty much the SAME weight as downloading music from the internet and buying pirated dvd and software. if you look at it in that perspective, it seems that the problem is not as terrible compared to blood diamonds (and from observation everyone i see around don't really care about or neither go to great lengths to ensure that the diamond/s they buy are NOT blood diamonds). i live in a country where counterfeit LVs is a fact of life, acceptable and normal. sure the police hold a once a 5-year bust on shops and seize fake LVs but i can say it is only done "for show". i also live in a poor country where some can appreciate your LV bag but where many would criticize you for spending a small fortune that can easily feed a small village for a month.

i do not promote fake bags but I also do not condone the buying/selling of such. i'd be lying to you if i told you i never bought a replica because i did in the past when i was younger and obviously could not yet afford the real thing. at that time, yes i knew that counterfeit meant thievery on the intellectual property level and yet i still bought it, like how i download free music from the internet or buy counterfeit dvds - for the only reason that it is cheap/cheaper. and let me repeat that this sort of thing is deemed acceptable and normal in our country so i think it is also a matter of tolerance (how strict laws are as per country).

for me, you will be most successful in educating & convincing people if you can address the price issue. that is after all, why people produce fakes in the first place. try to offer solutions... some examples:

1. tell them the importance of quality and investment (a handful of fake bags with no resale value equals to 1 authentic bag that has high re-sale value, especially for limited & rare pieces and most especially because lv prices only go up and never down)

2. Play up the timelessness of an LV bag - say an LV speedy bag costs USD700+, if they can allot USD50+ per month, by the end of the year they have enough money to purchase one VERSUS spending USD50 per month on a trendy bag. i relate to this well since i used to buy a bag 1x a month from fashion brands like Zara, the Sak, etc (those brands ranging USD50 per bag). I ended up having like 12 bags in 1 year that I never used again the following year (some broke due to the inferior quality, some ended up in ebay for re-sale and some I just gave away because i got bored of the style). i wish at that time i just bought one speedy at the end of the year and it would have given me so much more since the style is a classic and pairs well with any outfit, and the craftsmanship and quality is so well-made it would have lasted me so many years!

3. one can buy second hand at almost half the price yet is still in excellent / very good condition (ebay, japan pawnshops, other sites) - it would be nice if you can make a recommendation of trusted sellers you know. some sellers even offer lay-away payment terms.

good luck!
 

boyoverboard

Obsessed and in LoVe
O.G.
Feb 9, 2010
8,866
1,363
United Kingdom
I totally agree with everything you've said. Unfortunately, people either don't realise exactly what kind of illegal and immoral activities they are supporting by buying counterfeit goods - or worse, they just don't care.

I live in the UK and I wasn't aware that it is illegal to buy fakes - though certainly if you're caught bringing them into the country they can be confiscated. Anyway, if it is now illegal, it hasn't made a great deal of difference. Fakes are still quite a big problem, I've seen enough of them around! :sad:
 

ilona73

Member
Jan 18, 2013
181
2
west lancashire uk
I have the same issues. It really grates me. Just this week I noticed a fake Alma in Amarante on eBay. This was her response when I politely told her I knew the bag was a fake!

eBay sent this message to I Hampson
Your registered name is included to show

Dear

what it actually is..... this bag has been made by a factory that makes hundreds of bags for the company. it is made from the same material inside and out to the same guidelines. in all effects this is a louis vuitton bag. except that its not been commissioned by the company and the factory that embosses and treats the leather makes extra rolls to sell to the company to make these bags. that label is the cover for the key. really i was more than happy paying £700 for this because its the same as what id pay £2k for in the store. the code inside means absolutely nothing to me. on a trip to china 7 years ago we paid £3k for a £24,000 panerai which had the exact swiss parts. in fact took that to watches of swiss and they were absolutely astounded that it wasnt the 'original' panerai.

- gillmq
Reply in your email program or through My Messages

This was my reply

Dear gillmq,

it's £1040 Instore. I almost bought one yesterday on bond st. It's still a fake ! It's not the real deal and you are misleading innocent buyers into thinking it is however you try to justify it ! Not to mention the poor people that are persecuted as a result if this bag. Have you ever stopped and thought for a moment about the impact of your actions on others ??? Probably not.
 

miah100

Member
Sep 12, 2011
2,013
1,081
NYC
At the end of the day, people are gonna do what they want to do. I've learned just to ignore others decisions or try to educate them and not judge. You know better, you do better.
 

boyoverboard

Obsessed and in LoVe
O.G.
Feb 9, 2010
8,866
1,363
United Kingdom
what it actually is..... this bag has been made by a factory that makes hundreds of bags for the company. it is made from the same material inside and out to the same guidelines. in all effects this is a louis vuitton bag. except that its not been commissioned by the company and the factory that embosses and treats the leather makes extra rolls to sell to the company to make these bags. that label is the cover for the key. really i was more than happy paying £700 for this because its the same as what id pay £2k for in the store. the code inside means absolutely nothing to me. on a trip to china 7 years ago we paid £3k for a £24,000 panerai which had the exact swiss parts. in fact took that to watches of swiss and they were absolutely astounded that it wasnt the 'original' panerai.
:roflmfao: What an absolute crock! I love it when people say that their fake bag is essentially real because it's made by the same factory. I think not. Pathetic.
 

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
hmm... this is a very touchy subject that is very hard to deal with. let me start by saying that the selling (and/or buying in some countries) of counterfeit bags, specifically louis vuitton, is illegal because it deals with piracy and intellectual property issues - pretty much the SAME weight as downloading music from the internet and buying pirated dvd and software. if you look at it in that perspective, it seems that the problem is not as terrible compared to blood diamonds (and from observation everyone i see around don't really care about or neither go to great lengths to ensure that the diamond/s they buy are NOT blood diamonds). i live in a country where counterfeit LVs is a fact of life, acceptable and normal. sure the police hold a once a 5-year bust on shops and seize fake LVs but i can say it is only done "for show". i also live in a poor country where some can appreciate your LV bag but where many would criticize you for spending a small fortune that can easily feed a small village for a month.

i do not promote fake bags but I also do not condone the buying/selling of such. i'd be lying to you if i told you i never bought a replica because i did in the past when i was younger and obviously could not yet afford the real thing. at that time, yes i knew that counterfeit meant thievery on the intellectual property level and yet i still bought it, like how i download free music from the internet or buy counterfeit dvds - for the only reason that it is cheap/cheaper. and let me repeat that this sort of thing is deemed acceptable and normal in our country so i think it is also a matter of tolerance (how strict laws are as per country).

for me, you will be most successful in educating & convincing people if you can address the price issue. that is after all, why people produce fakes in the first place. try to offer solutions... some examples:

1. tell them the importance of quality and investment (a handful of fake bags with no resale value equals to 1 authentic bag that has high re-sale value, especially for limited & rare pieces and most especially because lv prices only go up and never down)

2. Play up the timelessness of an LV bag - say an LV speedy bag costs USD700+, if they can allot USD50+ per month, by the end of the year they have enough money to purchase one VERSUS spending USD50 per month on a trendy bag. i relate to this well since i used to buy a bag 1x a month from fashion brands like Zara, the Sak, etc (those brands ranging USD50 per bag). I ended up having like 12 bags in 1 year that I never used again the following year (some broke due to the inferior quality, some ended up in ebay for re-sale and some I just gave away because i got bored of the style). i wish at that time i just bought one speedy at the end of the year and it would have given me so much more since the style is a classic and pairs well with any outfit, and the craftsmanship and quality is so well-made it would have lasted me so many years!

3. one can buy second hand at almost half the price yet is still in excellent / very good condition (ebay, japan pawnshops, other sites) - it would be nice if you can make a recommendation of trusted sellers you know. some sellers even offer lay-away payment terms.

good luck!
Thanks for the reply. I have seen some posts regarding the 3 points you gave above, and while they are excellent incentives to invest in real LV, I have seen them from time to time on these websites already. Unfortunately they aren't said nearly as eloquently, they are usually said quite meanly, and I can see why someone would block those type of mean posts. So I guess people could try at least saying it more nicely.

I am getting the feeling that many of these people would never spend the money on LV, they will simply never see the value in it. That is fine with me. The only reason I would ever care who made someone's bag, is if it were made by tortured workers, and that is what I was hoping would move people. I am starting to feel like nothing will move them.
 

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
I have the same issues. It really grates me. Just this week I noticed a fake Alma in Amarante on eBay. This was her response when I politely told her I knew the bag was a fake!

eBay sent this message to I Hampson
Your registered name is included to show

Dear

what it actually is..... this bag has been made by a factory that makes hundreds of bags for the company. it is made from the same material inside and out to the same guidelines. in all effects this is a louis vuitton bag. except that its not been commissioned by the company and the factory that embosses and treats the leather makes extra rolls to sell to the company to make these bags. that label is the cover for the key. really i was more than happy paying £700 for this because its the same as what id pay £2k for in the store. the code inside means absolutely nothing to me. on a trip to china 7 years ago we paid £3k for a £24,000 panerai which had the exact swiss parts. in fact took that to watches of swiss and they were absolutely astounded that it wasnt the 'original' panerai.

- gillmq
Reply in your email program or through My Messages

This was my reply

Dear gillmq,

it's £1040 Instore. I almost bought one yesterday on bond st. It's still a fake ! It's not the real deal and you are misleading innocent buyers into thinking it is however you try to justify it ! Not to mention the poor people that are persecuted as a result if this bag. Have you ever stopped and thought for a moment about the impact of your actions on others ??? Probably not.
Good for you Ilona
I'm glad you tried :smile:
 

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
At the end of the day, people are gonna do what they want to do. I've learned just to ignore others decisions or try to educate them and not judge. You know better, you do better.
Sorry, when I see injustice and torture in the world, I don't ignore anything, I am the type to take action. Why should I get to hide my head in the sand in my comfortable middle class existance? The least I can do when I become aware of injustice that pulls at me whether it involves humans or animals, is get involved. Mostly it is in senate bills and government activities that could potentially change the way things are. When child torture and labor and killing is involved, you bet your life I *will* judge. I will educate first, but if people choose to continue to contribute to a lack of basic human rights, I will judge. And I will *not* apologize for that.
 

nerimanna

Member
Nov 9, 2012
1,497
127
Thanks for the reply. I have seen some posts regarding the 3 points you gave above, and while they are excellent incentives to invest in real LV, I have seen them from time to time on these websites already. Unfortunately they aren't said nearly as eloquently, they are usually said quite meanly, and I can see why someone would block those type of mean posts. So I guess people could try at least saying it more nicely.

I am getting the feeling that many of these people would never spend the money on LV, they will simply never see the value in it. That is fine with me. The only reason I would ever care who made someone's bag, is if it were made by tortured workers, and that is what I was hoping would move people. I am starting to feel like nothing will move them.
i was under the impression you cared to educate these people when you said you want to enlighten the public and been asking these people nicely and politely to just think for a minute. anyway, if you think you are passionate enough to fight "the fight", maybe join some non-government organizations that deal with this issue? my opinion only: tortured workers does not equate to counterfeit bag factories, bad management/companies = tortured workers (regardless of the nature of the business - legit or not), just check this article:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...op-workers-toil-34-hour-shifts-make-iPod.html
 

DrDior

Yes? May I help you?
Jan 13, 2012
3,874
1,315
Nowhere near you.
Sorry, when I see injustice and torture in the world, I don't ignore anything, I am the type to take action. Why should I get to hide my head in the sand in my comfortable middle class existance? The least I can do when I become aware of injustice that pulls at me whether it involves humans or animals, is get involved. Mostly it is in senate bills and government activities that could potentially change the way things are. When child torture and labor and killing is involved, you bet your life I *will* judge. I will educate first, but if people choose to continue to contribute to a lack of basic human rights, I will judge. And I will *not* apologize for that.
"Don't judge" is a pious cop-out.

When you've heard people use that same cop-out to justify failing to report child abuse, you see it for what it is: an excuse to do nothing when confronted with the reality of others' pain and suffering.

I judge and I judge hard. And I especially judge the non-judgers.

As for the youtube woman, report her to the FBI.
 

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
i was under the impression you cared to educate these people when you said you want to enlighten the public and been asking these people nicely and politely to just think for a minute. anyway, if you think you are passionate enough to fight "the fight", maybe join some non-government organizations that deal with this issue? my opinion only: tortured workers does not equate to counterfeit bag factories, bad management/companies = tortured workers (regardless of the nature of the business - legit or not), just check this article:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...op-workers-toil-34-hour-shifts-make-iPod.html
Regarding joining orgs that deal with the issue..yep that is the plan. Absolutely non-counterfeit does not equal good working conditions...I did imply my awareness of that in my original post, it is just that counterfeit operations essentially gaurantee bad working conditions due to a complete lack of regulation..
 

SophieChic

Member
Oct 6, 2011
1,198
37
Sierra Nevada Mountains CA
"Don't judge" is a pious cop-out.

When you've heard people use that same cop-out to justify failing to report child abuse, you see it for what it is: an excuse to do nothing when confronted with the reality of others' pain and suffering.

I judge and I judge hard. And I especially judge the non-judgers.

As for the youtube woman, report her to the FBI.
OH YEAH BABY!!!!! Dr Dior.....I like your style! Looking into it tomorrow. Must get some sleep tonight, am all worked up.:mad:
 

miah100

Member
Sep 12, 2011
2,013
1,081
NYC
Sorry, when I see injustice and torture in the world, I don't ignore anything, I am the type to take action. Why should I get to hide my head in the sand in my comfortable middle class existance? The least I can do when I become aware of injustice that pulls at me whether it involves humans or animals, is get involved. Mostly it is in senate bills and government activities that could potentially change the way things are. When child torture and labor and killing is involved, you bet your life I *will* judge. I will educate first, but if people choose to continue to contribute to a lack of basic human rights, I will judge. And I will *not* apologize for that.
And I totally understand where you are coming from! I think you might have misunderstood me! By not judging, I meant from my experience it is better to try to educate those who are buying counterfeit then to start attacking. As for the counterfeiters themselves I agree we should attack and judge for all the terrible activity a they are doing!
 

Christabella

Member
Jan 23, 2009
517
1
Germany
I found the video with the fake review and the proposal to PM the woman in order to get the name of the website.
Of course this is unbelievable and totally sad, but in my view, it's hard to educate people or to change their minds.
I am a teacher and experience every day how hard it is to make somebody understand something and how unwilling people are to change their mind.
So I believe we're not going to change the world. Someone wrote above: "You know better. You do better." I agree!