Often, I browse auction websites, specifically looking for designer handbags and jewellery. Considering that the prices are very low, I often expect things to be slightly used (especially in the case of jewellery), factory seconds, “open box” items or display pieces. Too often, however, they are fakes.
Sometimes, these fakes are called “replicas” in the item description. Sometimes, the item description does not match the description of the authentic item (listing a necklace as 18" long when the real one is 15"). Sometimes, the photographs of the item show that it is indeed different from a legitimate item. However, in all of those cases, a buyer who is not very familiar with the item may fail to notice the discrepancies.
Sometimes, they are not called “replicas.” Sometimes, the stock photo is used and the dimensions listed are those of the authentic item. This is not fair to the buyers, who are expecting an authentic item and will bid accordingly. Sometimes, they even sell the spurious items with the authentic tags or packaging. This is not fair to the designers, who produce a quality product, only to have an inferior one passed off as their work.
Recently, I won an auction for a necklace and bracelet set. It was a good deal, but not so cheap that it raised a red flag as to authenticity. It was a price appropriate for a gently-used item. Nowhere in the item description was it called a replica; in fact, it was stated that it came with the original boxes, pouches and shopping bags. A stock photo was used, and lengths of both the necklace and bracelet matched those of the real thing.
The set came in the mail today, and the necklace looks slightly different from the stock photo. The bracelet was half an inch shorter than it should be, and the necklace is two and a half inches longer than it should be. I was able to verify that they were, indeed, fake. :mad: They’re getting sent back tomorrow.
In my opinion, this is fraud, and it’s disgusting. Selling a piece with no indication that it’s fake is wrong, plain and simple. Selling jewellery and calling it “Tiffany-inspired” is also wrong; jewellery “inspired” would merely look similar, it would not have the company’s name stamped on it and come in their boxes. You’re taking away their business, you’re making their product less valuable and you’re defrauding people along the way.
The people who buy fake items knowingly are no better. Let’s not keep these people in business, ok? If you can’t afford the full price, buy it used, buy it at auction, buy showroom pieces, buy look-alikes that don’t have the company’s/designer’s names stamped on them. Why create a market for these counterfeits? :rolleyes: