Why isn't Spyderco doing anything to combat the fake copies of their products?

Discussion in 'Spyderco' started by gglotz83, Apr 18, 2014.

  1. Stays Sharp

    Stays Sharp

    Nov 21, 2013
    Hate to say it also but I am sure that those who willfully buy fakes greatly outnumber those that get duped. It is not limited to knives as the Chinese copy everything. Quick example, Fake Edge Pro's... How many do you think are buying these thinking they are the real deal??? Getting tricked of course is very common also, but the vast majority know they are buying counterfeits.

    Those that do get duped...and perhaps never find out that their Spyderco (or any other product) was fake, runs the risk of having a negative association with the brand when/if the product fails or doesnt meet expectations. That's another thing that sucks and negative feedback is shared with 100x the motivation. "Everyone... I bought a Spyderco PM2 for $150 and it sucks etc etc."
  2. bld522


    Feb 3, 2004
    . . . and getting better all the time, I'm afraid. Based on some of the fakes I've seen recently, it's clear to me that they're being manufactured by people who know what they're doing. I wouldn't be surprised if they're being made after-hours in the same facilities that produce legitimate knives for name-brand manufacturers. So what's the solution? I can only think of one. Find out where the high-quality copies are being made and contract with the manufacturers to produce low-cost, legitimate knives instead. As I said earlier, if you can't lick 'em, join 'em.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014
  3. Andre


    May 22, 2000
    ?.......going full Star Trek?
  4. SolidState


    Sep 22, 2012
    I guess you could marry your rapist too.
  5. bld522


    Feb 3, 2004
    Or you could just let him slit your throat. I didn't say the solution would be easy.
  6. D-R0CK


    Sep 22, 2012
    Alright, so I have the solution: Spyderco should assign two alphanumeric numbers to a knife at random, lasering one on the blade and one on the liner/scale, then catalog that combination in their computers, and let people use a website tool to check against the cataloged system for counterfeits. IE if I get a knife that has A14E8 on the blade and 7F86Q on the handle, I enter that into two search boxes and the computer tells me if that's right or not. If each number was five digits or so long it would take weeks AT BEST for the counterfeiters computers to guess even ONE combination at random to put it on a knife (this is called a "brute force" attack) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Password_cracking They can't operate at that low a capacity. The chinese could never produce counterfeits in bulk if this system were used. It would be simple and relatively cheap to implement too, relative to actually fighting them in court and pursuing their manufacturing facilities. Fight smarter, not harder. The comment was made earlier that they could counterfeit serial numbers. This is true, but only if the number changes in a predictable (and thus repeatable) way. If a random alpha-numeric (IE A14E8) was combined with another random alphanumeric (IE 7F86Q) you have a combination (A14E87F86Q) which is unique among 3,760,620,109,779,060 possibilities! And that's with ONLY UPPERCASE and NO SYMBOLS! If they tried to use the same online tool I suggested spyderco provide to find a password, finding this particular one I made up would take them 1.20 thousand centuries. (Assuming spyderco website security let them enter as many password as they wanted as often as they could...) Check it out HERE: https://www.grc.com/haystack.htm Yes, that's right, 120,000 years. If spyderco makes 1.5 million knives per year, it would take about 700 nonstop hours to get lucky and find just one correct combination. It would be crazy simple. I could write a program in half an hour that could come up with the serial numbers. Hire a real programmer and for a couple grand you never have to worry about large scale counterfeiting again if you keep your website secure. This problem is amenable, but you have to be smarter than the counterfeiters, you can't just fight them they way you could've 50 years ago. With a little outreach and PR, everyone buying a spyderco (or at least a high end one) will know to double check their serial number. Then people will choose between the fake and the real deal, no gray area, and it's up to the newly equipped and educated consumer to help spyderco.
  7. miltmaldo

    miltmaldo Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 5, 2012
    To USA company who own the patent and the technology . STOP sharing your technology . Most patent are own by USA company's and yet they lend there technology to other countries for cheap labor . Thats the problem . Specialy to countries that are communist . How come we can't get a Cuban cigar but yet we get China's counterfeit ?
  8. RevDevil


    Nov 9, 2009
    See, now that is a really good question. Haha, seriously sad day when we can have crates of counterfeit, lead and cyanide tainted everything from pet food to cutlery, but a simple cigar from a nearby island is out of the question.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2014
  9. gglotz83


    Feb 7, 2014
    I've also thought about a system that is very similar to what you have described - randomized alphanumeric numbering, in conjunction with a searchable database on Spyderco's website. The only issue I see with this is - what happens when the counterfeiters buy legit spyderco knives and just copy the genuine serials onto their fakes? The database would have to somehow limit the number of times that a serial could be searched, or require the user to register that serial number in some way, to prevent it from being used again. Or maybe once a serial number is entered for the first time, the data base creates a randomized password that must be entered on subsequent visits to access info about that serial number again.

    There are definitely ways to outsmart the counterfeiters, and I'm glad that there are some like-minded people here. I just don't buy into the "oh there is nothing that you can do......so lets just lay down and die" mentality.

    It's very clear that these overseas governments do not play by the same rules and laws that we do - so why would you try to have any legitimate "legal" battle over this? That's just a waste of time and money. Take control of the situation, and implement something to protect your product.
  10. gglotz83


    Feb 7, 2014
    To anyone who thinks that the fakes are always easy to spot - I suggest that you watch this video. The "next gen" of fakes have stepped it up a few notches!

  11. SolidState


    Sep 22, 2012
    The solution isn't easy - it's societal, as with rape and murder as the metaphor holding in the extreme case so vividly points out.
    It hinges on what people think is fair involving their rights to artistic and intellectual property, as well as labor conditions, accuracy in reporting of content, and integrity of product support.
    And like with rape and murder, often the victim or the victim's family get doubly screwed over when society does them wrong via allowing the rape/murder to happen without having some sort of agreed-upon redress for the initial assault.
    Hell, the title of the thread does nothing but blame the victim of intellectual property theft for the theft. It belittles the hardship that the criminal activity puts the Glessers and their employees through. At no point does the OP pay attention to the easily-recognizable underlying issues that they must be facing.

    Here's just a few hardships that I can attest to from reading first hand accounts on the forum (this thread included), or that I can easily predict with only rudimentary logical skill:
    1. People buy the knife to look like they have a Spyderco when really they have a knockoff that could be pot metal for all they know.
    2. People show off the knockoff to demonstrate "How close they're getting." People oooh and aaaah about it. I.E. people advertise the fakes.
    3. People see the fakes, see the afis talking nicely about how good the fake looks and figure they should get one instead of saving another week/month/year for a real Spyderco. Humans and other animals experience hyperbolic discounting at alarming rates.
    4. People who don't know they have a fake, and even some who do know, post some negative review about the "Spyderco" they bought that sucks for whatever reason. Although it is never really said, I hazard a guess that cheap knockoffs are part of the reason why Sal has the standard response of: "Send it in" when people post that kind of stuff.
    5. People who buy fakes send the broken one in to Spyderco to fix/replace because the packaging is faked.
    6. If something is to be done, Spyderco has to pay lawyers in MINIMALLY two jurisdictions to possibly get some sort of compensation (most likely at a huge initial cost).
    Name one accountant who would list a single one of those things as a positive addition to revenue, or probable cause of positive revenue stream. I couldn't find one if I tried.

    Although I like the idea of serial numbers, they won't do much to curb the real issue. They'd simply be a talking point for the afis, like model numbers are currently. People who know care enough know the difference between the C27 and the C34. People who want the big pointy and scary-lookin one they saw in that movie looking bada$$ will buy the knockoff instead of the real one, even with extensive serial numbers.

    To me it is kind of funny that as a society we'd throw someone in jail if he stole 10 Spyderco Military models from SFO, but we won't put someone away for knowingly selling 30 knockoffs at 1/3rd the price even though functionally they're both costing the company similar amounts of money in sales opportunity. Effectively, we have a system in which there are right ways and wrong ways to steal from American businesses. It would seem that the better at stealing you are, the more people demand that you're respected for the crime.
  12. Karda

    Karda Banned BANNED

    Jun 1, 2007
    While a manufacturer can't accomplish a whole lot in the counterfeiters own country, pursuing those people/companies that sell or allow fakes to be sold via there sites in this country is a viable option, IMHO.
    Once you start costing these unscrupulous people their shipments, businesses, websites and profits thru litigation and seizures the commodity of counterfeits will not seem as lucrative and as easy money as it has been so far. Once you make these items the "hot potato that no one wants to touch", the line of unbought freight for these counterfeit goods will back up like a plugged sewer all the way to the originating country (mostly china). When they are sitting on vast quantities of seizable assets in their own country production will need to slow or stop.

    Unfortunately, since USDOHS is so overwhelmed by the problem, the manufacturer will have to step up its game in the legal arena. This will cost them more money which will have to be passed on to us, the consumer. This is the ultimate price paid aside from going out of business because of selfish people thinking the purchase of these items is ok and not hurting anyone.
    The real truth is: these selfish people are hurting every one of us and every manufacturer by driving up prices and making consumers leery of getting cheated by a substandard counterfeit product.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2014
  13. The Deacon

    The Deacon

    Apr 27, 2003
    I could be wrong, but I think the point of them moving assembly of panels destined for the USA to Taiwan was to allow the panels to be labeled "Made in Taiwan" and avoid the tarriff.
  14. SolidState


    Sep 22, 2012
    You're probably correct Deacon.
  15. bld522


    Feb 3, 2004
    I'm not sure if that would work. As Sal pointed out, for example, Alibaba will soon go public. In fact, their IPO is being touted as one of the largest of all time. And as Sal also pointed out, Alibaba gives counterfeiters free reign to sell on their website. Is that likely to change after they go public? Perhaps. But even if Alibaba stops the counterfeiters from plying their wares, another Alibaba-type platform will spring up that will allow them to do so.

    Like it or not, the demand for counterfeits isn't going to go away, education and litigation notwithstanding, especially as the quality of counterfeit products improves to the point that it becomes virtually impossible to tell the difference between counterfeits and originals. (If the video gglotz83 posted is any indication, it appears that we're practically there already.) Under the circumstances and as difficult as it may be to swallow, I stand by my original recommendation: If you can't lick 'em, join 'em.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2014
  16. Balls Deep

    Balls Deep

    Jan 2, 2014
    This. Really I think this is an important way to think about not just knives but most products. I would love to purchase a Busse but with the $200+ price tag on most models it's just not in my future. I can afford an esee with a no questions life time warranty. It feels really good to get a good deal on just about anything. However, I feel like there's an equally good feel that I get from buying a knife from a reputable company in the states, with customer servicel who answers the phone on the second ring. When you encounter that experience, the extra dollars are worth it IMO.
  17. FDE


    Jul 20, 2012
    I hate how the US has become so depended upon China for so many of its daily commoditys. If for politic reasons or otherwise the flow of Chinese goods was suddenly stopped America would be crippled because the industrial infrastructure that boomed during WW2 no longer exists within the country. I agree there are many things we shouldn't be sharing with countries that do not share our cultural beliefs but I don't think that would solve the problem with Spyderco counterfeits. Its obvious from the many variations that they never had a blueprint for the models the are counterfeiting. They simply get an example in hand and reverse engineer.
  18. XiaolongJackson


    Jun 5, 2012
    I've heard it's pretty bad for people living in China too. Read reports of counterfeit eggs synthesized from cheap wheat byproducts and cooking oil made from whatever fluids they can extract from sewage. Apparently they have counterfeit meat too, but evidently the problem isn't as tame as the UK's recent problem of having horse meat passed off as beef. I really don't think people here in the states appreciate the FDA nearly enough.
  19. numbersman


    Nov 28, 2010
    I'm with Screwdriver, stop making stuff in China. And stop buying Chinese stuff!!!! Our governments don't seem to have the balls to do anything about Chinese knockoffs, which seem to be a national industry, but we as the consumer can do something. I know it costs more money, but as one member here likes to say, "Buy expensive the first time and only cry once."
  20. bld522


    Feb 3, 2004
    That looks good on paper, but it's just not going to happen. So we're back to having to deal with reality. We live in a global economy and those who cannot compete will perish. Don't believe me? Visit your local WalMart and watch what happens with the Alibaba IPO. That should tell you everything you need to know.

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