November 24, 2014

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Counterfeit Websites are Getting Really Good at Tricking Consumers

The Fashion Law Exclusive – A study by MarkMonitor reveals that while the number of online shoppers seeking out counterfeit goods is not increasing very significantly, the number of shoppers being duped into purchasing fakes is growing. In fact, approximately one in six online shoppers are tricked by websites selling counterfeit goods and one in ten online shoppers land on rogue sites (sites selling counterfeit goods) in their search for authentic goods.

MarkMonitor, a brand protection company, which helps many major brands protect themselves from online counterfeiting, fraud, piracy and cybersquatting, released its annual Shopping Report study last week and the findings present some major warnings for fashion houses. According to the report, along with the rise in websites offering designer goods at discounted prices comes an increased risk that consumers looking to purchase authentic goods are falling victim to counterfeiters that have “camouflaged themselves” as legitimate. Moreover, the 2014 report, which analyzed data from nearly nine million online sessions from roughly 280,000 shoppers, states: “Most shoppers are trying to purchase legitimate goods from brands they’re familiar with and loyal to. But they’re also looking for the best deals on these goods, which is why a shocking number of consumers end up on sites selling counterfeit goods.”

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Chanel Won Employee Discrimination Lawsuit

Chanel won an employment-related lawsuit in Ireland earlier this month, stemming from what a former employee claims was employment discrimination based on pregnancy. The lawsuit was filed by Ilena Cappello, a former employee of Parfum Chanel, in 2011 with the Irish Labour Court and Equality Tribunal. In her complaint, which named Chanel Ltd. and Parfum Chanel, a subsidiary of the famed iconic design house, Cappello claims Chanel “discriminated against her on the grounds of gender, family status and marital status in terms of conditions of employment and other discriminatory conduct.” According to Cappello, she has been working part-time (on Saturdays and Sundays) for the Chanel boutique in a major Dublin department store since September 2010, “to facilitate her studies at UCD.” She stated that “there were never any complaints about her performance.”

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Today: From Around the Web

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Alexander McQueen has plans to open its first store in Paris next summer, showcasing the brand’s new retail concept by creative director Sarah Burton. The location: a 6,458-square-foot space at 372 Rue Saint-Honoré.

How Tomas Maier saved Bottega Veneta – and he didn’t need a logo – The Star

Two Quest-represented male models struck a pose in court after coke, LSD bust – NY Post

Jean Paul Gaultier employees have staged a demonstration in Paris, in protest over the proposed redundancies that are being made following the designer’s decision to terminate his ready-to-wear collections. – Vogue UK

Net-a-Porter Owner Said to Consider 2015 IPO: Cie. Financiere Richemont SA is considering an initial public offering of online retailer Net-a-Porter as soon as next year, sources say. – Reuters

Now You Know: What Happens When a Designer Leaves His Own Label – InStyle

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The Week in Review

This week brought a flurry of lawsuits with an array of different causes of action, thereby, proving that “fashion law” really does exceed the bounds of merely intellectual property law. Sephora and its parent company LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, for instance, was slapped with a racial discrimination lawsuit on the heels of its deactivation of the accounts of what the plaintiffs claim is a disproportionate number of Asians. Gucci was named in a wage and employment lawsuit this week, making it the latest design house to be hit with an unpaid internship lawsuit. In the UK, fast fashion chain Topshop  asked a court to overturn a former ruling that has prevented it from selling t-shirts with a picture of singer Rihanna on the front. Also this past week, Joe Magnano, the artist who vandalized Prada Marfa this past March pled guilty to two counts of misdemeanor criminal mischief on the eve of his trial and agreed to pay $10,700 in restitution to Ballroom Marfa. The money will reportedly go towards restoring the faux Prada store art installation. Here are some of the other stories you may have missed …

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Retro Read: Nasty Gal Copies Givenchy, Sells Infringing Bag

In light of the opening to Nasty Gal’s first brick and mortar store, we take a look back at one of the many egregious copies that retailer has offered for sale in recent years. Remember that time Nasty Gal sold a spot-on copy of Givenchy’s Rottweiler Antigona Tote tote? You can reacquaint yourself with Nasty Gal’s devious ways and brush up on the legality of the situation at the same time. This article was originally published in April 2013 …

In case you weren’t sure just how nasty online retailer Nasty Gal is, here’s a hint. Quite often we see fast fashion retailers selling copies of high fashion garments and accessories because design piracy is a perfectly legal practice in the United States (for the most part). However, one tactic that’s definitely not legal is copying an image that appears on another brand’s wares and putting it on your own. Case in point: Nasty Gal’s “Vicious tote.” Unlike plain old design piracy (for which there is very little protection available via copyright law), there is protection for pictorial, sculptural and graphic works under U.S. copyright law. Nasty Gal’s insanely blatant imitation of Givenchy’s super-popular Rottweiler design is a perfect example.

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Givenchy’s Rottweiler bag (left) & Nasty Gal’s version (right)

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In Light of the Prabal Gurung x MAC Collection …

Designer Prabal Gurung’s collection with MAC Cosmetics is upon us, and it is far from the run of the mill makeup collaboration. The 14-piece collection is, as Harper’s Bazaar correctly points out, “one of the most glamorous—and expensive—collaborations the beauty giant has ever done.” The publication further describes the collection, writing: “Color plays a standout role in his new beauty collection: for the eyes, a rich black liner and highlighter and eye shadows that range from sparkling neutrals to subtle peaches and intense smoky hues; for the lips, a refreshing violet, a go-to nude and a deep red for lipsticks; for the cheeks, a cream coral blush and bronzing powder.” The designer, who has been working with MAC for his runway shows since he first launched his label, is certainly proud of the result. He says: “This is the first time MAC is doing a collaboration at such a luxe level.” He further states: “We paid detailed attention to how it’s made, what it looks like and what it feels like. So, I’m excited.” Leading up to the launch of the designer’s collection with MAC, which will launch November 26 in MAC stores in North America and in December internationally, we look back to some of our favorite Prabal Gurung x MAC runway makeup collabs in the past …

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Today: From Around the Web

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Rihanna is reportedly set to sign a $1 million-plus contract to create sneakers and more for Puma and not wear any other brand’s sneakers. – NY Daily News

True Story: The Beautiful Freedom of Wearing the Same Thing Every Day – Racked

Artist Jeff Koons’ Hermès Birkin Bag Artworks Raise $5.5 Million – Pursuitist

What it is like to scout for male models – Fashionista

With rival Kering leading the way in terms of embracing sustainability, LVMH has joined the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Research on Biodiversity in France. The aims to promote national, European and international research on biodiversity, establishing close connections between various participants in the biodiversity sphere. – TFL

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Bridget Foley Talks Condé Nast, Intern Entitlement

Writing for Womens Wear Daily today, Bridget Foley had some strong words on the heels of the official settlement of the Condé Nast internship lawsuit, which was reported earlier this week (and on the heels of a recently filed internship lawsuit against Gucci). Here are some of our favorite excepts from Foley’s article, entitled Condé Interns — Extinction by Entitlement?

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