Again knocks off have reared their ugly head. This time d&b audiotechnik have taken some important steps. To quote what I believe is a statement from the company I have found:
In the light of recent events, d&b audiotechnik are pleased to inform you that we are active in our pursuit of copy products that infringe on our copyrights and trademarks and damage d&b audiotechnik’s reputation because of their bad quality. On May 24 th a raid took place in Guangzhou, China where officers seized goods that infringed on d&b audiotechnik’s Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). The raid was prepared over the four months leading to May 24th with the involvement of lawyers and detectives gathering information from different regions.
Our efforts will not end here and d&b audiotechnik’s partners can be assured that we are awake and will be pursuing all those who have any involvement in IPR infringement or representation be it manufacturer, representative or user. Further actions in regions where copy products are manufactured and appear for sale are being prepared right now. We will keep you posted on further occurrences.
There is a Facebook group,Knock off Entertainment Technology in Australia, that is keeping up the interest in the knock off gear that is permeating over industry. This group to quote thier Facebook page:
This is a group started on behalf of ACETA to host discussion and comment on the problem of counterfeit and/or low standard equipment that is coming into our country on an ever increasing basis. At this stage the ACETA committee dealing with this is myself and Pascal Bonnet from Acoustic Technologies. We will be bringing one other board member and co-opting others to assist as well.
I put the page up today to get it rolling. I have invited a few people. I will go through my contacts over the week-end and invite more. I hope a lot more people than I have get involved. I will do more over the next few days.
In am writing a guideline on posting rules and that will be up shortly.
Further information on ACETA is available from our website http://www.aceta.org.au/
(author – Stephen Devine)
Reading this group it is obvious that a lot of people in the industry are very concerned about what is happening and the consequences. The group is not only concerned about theft of intellectual property but also about products that are not suitable for the task, usually priced low and sometimes look like the “real” thing. There has also been discussion of products that look similar – take par cans for example. Who made the original par can and are all other brands copies. There are a lot of gray areas in this discussion , but it is a discussion that we need to have. It is also interesting to note that some of the links on the Facebook page have gone missing or are a reported attack page., Chinese Department store to name one.
What has also been a worring image is the use of some equipment in the Australian marketplace that looks so much like the real thing, you need to take a second closer look at it to make sure. CX magazine has published a good article on this. I suggest you get a copy and have a read about a copy Vertec PA for a car dealer. If you spend some time on eBay and Gumtree you will notice a lot of Australian companies that are selling a whole range of gear that looks familiar but has no known name tag
We all know that good equipment costs a lot, but we still have to keep in mind that these companies spend a lot of money of developing a new design etc. Then they spend money to get it into the marketplace and in front of us the purchasers and users. Then another company comes along, buys one unit and then copies, and often badly without any concern for the consequences. Now this might be okay for some things but what about production that might have the potential to injure people, like truss and staging. How do we know that the copies are built to the same tolerance. Are they built to the same specifications and have they been certified by the relevant countries authorities that they are sold in.
So we all need to be careful who we buy from and what we buy. We need to make sure we are getting the real deal. If you do buy some of the knock off gear be prepared for a lot of flack from others in the industry as you are doing a disservice to us all. You are lowering the quality of what we do and also potentially stealing from the IP owners. If you see something dodgy or know who is selling knock off gear feel free to let me know on this site or report it in the Facebook group or let Julius at CX know.