The breadth of argument against the replication of original design commonly includes quality, craftsmanship, ethical manufacturing and commitment to environmental practice, but perhaps one of the strongest cards the anti-counterfeit campaigners have in appealing to the ambivalent consumer is that of the embodied value in an original design piece.
Where the term “value” is used emotively in this debate, it also holds true financial and measurable weight in the justification for protecting a design and its designer’s interests.
The cheapening of brands, aesthetics and concepts through the undercutting of the selling price is done, as we know, by doing away with investment in quality materials, expertise in manufacturing as well as the initial design process – the result is merely a facsimile of someone else’s hard work. Cheap gets cheap.
To acknowledge that the purchasing of authentic goods will, in fact, offer the potential for a strong return in years to come, is rarely given credence by counterfeit purchasers.
In June, James Cockington at the Sydney Morning Herald examined this issue at a time when investment in property and stock is suffering from tighter pockets and loss of confidence in those looking for sound investments. Cheeringly, auction houses across Australia are reporting no real slump in interest, if anything trends show a boost in the high regard for designed goods and “legendary pieces” as reliable investment alternatives.