With Black Friday behind us and Christmas bearing down in what seems like record speed, consumers hungry for a good deal are online in record numbers this holiday season, making them easy prey for counterfeiters and copycats.
‘Tis the season to start holiday shopping. For many, that means it is time to start looking for presents for friends and family. In many cases, that includes a trip online to look for good deals on golfing equipment. Unfortunately, while that club for Uncle Rico might look like a screaming deal, what you order (and pay for) and what they ultimately get can potentially be two very, very different things.
Part of any good brand protection program is the ability to be proactively protected. Making sure you're taking steps to keep your brand and IP protected before there's a problem can help mitigate any potential long term damage.
Counterfeiting is on the rise, and the financial impact is forecast to reach over $4.2 trillion by 2022. While online marketplaces struggle with how to help ensure that counterfeits aren’t making it onto their sites, there are steps brand holders can take to make it harder for bad actors to profit from their intellectual property. 
Here are four actionable items a brand holder can take now to help ensure the safety of their IP:
Topics: Brand Protection
The past few weeks we've spent some time on this blog exploring the costs and consequences of counterfeiting and how knock-offs can affect any brand, regardless of size. While the drive to save money can be a powerful incentive for a thrifty shopper to grab a product that is "close" to what they're looking for, the reality is, counterfeit items are a serious problem. Having educated consumers that know the difference between fake and real not only helps protect your bottom line, but also provides you with a valuable resource as they can alert a brand holder to suspicious products.
In the world of competitive business, profit lies in innovation and quality. Unfortunately, there are many who unscrupulously copy the hard work of others in the quest for a quick buck. This practice, known as counterfeiting, is big business, and costs legitimate brand and IP holders millions of dollars a year in lost revenue as well as potential irreparable reputation loss and customer harm.
Digital piracy has been around since the inception of the Internet itself, and while countless countermeasures have been implemented by both government officials and brand holders, the problem has continued to grow to the tune of $12 billion in losses to the United States' economy in 2017 alone. Unfortunately, the cost of digital piracy is more than just financial. As a result of piracy and the illegal distribution of pirated content, the financial burden on legitimate companies has resulted in the estimated loss of more than 70,000 jobs annually.
With the ease and availability of the Internet and the convenience of ripping, streaming, downloading and sharing, digital piracy is on the rise. While often seen as a "victimless" crime, piracy is still, nonetheless, a crime, and if caught, a perpetrator can face legal repercussions ranging from massive fines to time in prison, or both.
With the ease of online distribution and the availability of affordable manufacturing, the number of incidents of global piracy are on the rise. For anyone with IP online, the threat is real, and the effects can be devastating to both the reputation and bottom line of companies large and small. As perpetrator efforts become more creative and advanced, it’s up to brand holders to fight back. While there are numerous ways for the unauthorized use of digitally protected copyrighted materials to be traced and reprimanded using anti-piracy stings by several governing authorities, it’s often up to the IP holder to instigate the actions.
Cosplay is phenomenally popular, and with the explosion of fan-based conventions and events, more IP and brand holders are seeing their work show up in elaborately made “homage” costumes. While many cosplayers limit their creations to single pieces made for personal use, a few bad actors play fast and loose with designs, and some brand holders are discovering their hard work commercialized by unauthorized copycats.
Another INTA annual meeting has come and gone. And with over 11,000 registrants from 150 countries in attendance at this year’s Seattle, Washington location, it was the biggest annual meeting yet. This year’s attendance statistics included 2,674 first time attendees, 1,254 corporate members, and 275 officials. It’s estimated that the conference pumped $20 million dollars into Seattle’s economy and helped support 4,763 jobs in the area.
It’s hard to believe another year has gone by, but here we are again…it’s May and that means INTA is on our schedule for this month! While last year’s events took place in Barcelona, this year it’s a little closer to home for the AppDetex team, and we are looking forward to our upcoming trip to Seattle.
With over 300 educational sessions, 100+ committee, project team and Committee Meetings as well as 30+ networking receptions and 100+ exhibitors, it promises to be another intense and information packed five days! This year’s highlights will include a focus on new anti-counterfeiting measures, the effects of the upcoming GDPR changes, and a focus on the ever-evolving IP landscape. On top of that, there are new excursion opportunities as well as speed networking aimed at getting attendees out into the surrounding areas and mingling, and an epic opportunity to see Joan Jett live at the Saturday night concert.
Keeping your brand safe in an increasingly digital and online world can be difficult. Luckily, AppDetex's Marketplace Solution makes that job easier by following seven simple values. Learn all about our Marketplaces offerings and how we help protect companies of all sizes when dealing with e-commerce.
As a brand holder for a small company, it’s easy to get lulled into a false sense of security when it comes to counterfeits and knock-offs. It’s tempting to tell yourself that bad actors are too busy chasing the big corporations to waste their time with smaller organizations.
While that may have been true before, advances in technology and the availability of cheap manufacturing and the emergence of affordable 3-D printers, means anyone can fall victim to IP theft, regardless of size. It’s estimated that the global economy loses over $350 billion dollars in sales to counterfeit goods each year.
As any good business person can tell you, a brand is only as strong as its reputation. This reputation, built by the development of high quality products, marketing, and outreach to customers through advertising and public relations, may take years of hard work and dedication, which is why protecting it is so critical.
Brand protection basics include ensuring your goods, products, logos, and designs are all protected with trademarks and copyrights, but in today's increasingly digital market, online brand protection is increasingly important.
Springtime for brand protection means conference season, and AppDetex was honored to attend the recent McCarthy Institute Symposium at the University of San Francisco Law School on February 23rd. Here's our quick wrap-up.