I’m going to touch on a subject that I’ve been wanting to write about several times now, but somehow didn’t get to put the lines down. It’s about this dread that are counterfeit watches, or “replicas”. I recently got a close friend of mine getting one of those for a “super deal”, and that was the last straw for me. Here’s why I’m against this. Not just because it’s encouraging a whole black market, but also and mainly because it reflects really bad taste on the part of the wearer. And that’s mildly put.
If we are to strictly stick to terms, let us not fool ourselves with the argument that, considering the seemingly convenient price points that replicas sell for, everyone knows before they purchase that these are not original watches, and thus selling and buying replicas is not a deception, but instead just the fulfillment of a demand for products that few can afford.
Fakery accompanies these watches along their entire existence, starting with the first moment of their conception (raising the necessary funds, of dubious origin, to finance their making) and until it winds up on the proud buyer’s wrist.
Renowned Swiss firms have invested for decades huge sums to create and to improve their clocks, in order to maintain and increase the prestige of those trademarks, for promoting on the market of increasingly diverse and more appealing designs, for the of high quality training and advanced training of craftsmen and specialist who are unique in the world.
It is self understood that they are very interested to protect of their image and revenue, of which the largest part is the reinvestment year after year in the improvement and diversification of their products. Having the moral right, and, as a consequence, the legal right on their side, they undertake various actions to stave off the parasitic and harmful phenomenon of counterfeiting. And they don’t do it only by appealing to the justice and the public force, but also by offering affordable products, a great example being the Rolex company, that offers watches in the same design, of a very high quality, under the brand name Tudor (official site here: http://www.tudorwatch.com/), at prices more affordable than the Rolexes. Or an example that’s very familiar to me, that of tactical watches. Since I own a number of G-shock tactical watches, here’s a telling comparison between a real one and a fake!
Although successful in numerous areas, the Swiss brands and professional associations continue to be hit by the lack of legality that reigns in certain parts of the world, where there are large underground economy and/or corrupt regimes that do not respect the rights of property.
I won’t stop here on the multi-branched of those who finance and run the illegal activities, those who copy the design of brand watches, who produce (or steal) components and assemble them, and then sell the finished product through shady networks. I will focus my attention on the people who are “targets” and, in a way, victims of the entire networks just described, the final wearers of counterfeit watches. To make a long story short, I’ll talk about two types of owners of expensive watches: those who can afford them and collectors.
Those in the first category will choose their watches according to various criteria related to their financial possibilities, their tastes and social environment, as a match to their overall outfit, usually of a high level itself. The wearers of watches from the first category are therefore relatively easy to recognize by their general appearance. The collectors, who do not belong to the first category, are those who are willing to pay a hefty to own the objects of their dreams. They are not hard to identify either, usually due to their special interests and, consequently, their high level of knowledge in the field of watchmaking.
And there is also a third category, that of wearers of counterfeited watches. For them goes a saying that’s often used in the watch industry: “a clock not only displays the time, but says something about its wearer”. Of course one can ask the question, what do “replicas” tell about their wearers?
Because I could not find anything truly positive, I will only say that in no situation one who fits in this category will be taken as someone from the first two categories described above. Not only did they encourage illegal activities through their action, but they are always in a dilemma whether to lie saying that they wear an original watch (a very short-lived lie), or to create a negative image of themselves every time they are forced to admit that wear a “replica”.
If we add to this that these owners have spent some of their hard-earned money on counterfeit products, while they could have spent it on a quality product far superior to what they now wear, watches for whih they could get included service and warranty that is missing entirely in the counterfeit’s case, we cannot but draw the conclusion that in fact such buying behavior goes counter to the interests of these buyers.