Modern Moto Magazine Free full issue preview! - Page 16

FAKE GEAR?! Is your gear authen c? Does it need to be? The story of three companies and one jacket. For as long as there has been stuff , there has been copies of stuff . Counterfei ng currency in America goes back to the fi rst English se lements when unscrupulous traders would dye worthless white shells to look more like the valuable blue-black shells. 1 The fashion industry began to fall vic m in the early 1900s when forgers would sketch designs they saw in Paris shows, and by 1914, more than two million fake labels had been sewn into reproduc ons of couture garments. 2 Flash forward to current day when ba ling counterfeit products has go en even tougher with the internet as a source for marke ng and distribu on. So, what’s the big deal in buying a copy of a high-end hand bag; who does it hurt? It’s o en hard to relate to the struggle of major companies that fi ght these forgeries. It may seem like there is enough room for everyone, and who doesn’t want to save a few bucks? However, intellectual property laws are in place for a reason. It protects this magazine; it protects designers, inventors, engineers, makers and creators. It’s about more than the money; it could also ruin a legi mate company’s reputa on if the replicated goods are created at an extremely low cost, equa ng to much lower quality, which can in turn refl ect badly on the original designers when consumers don’t understand the diff erence. So, what does this have to do with motorcycle gear? The motorcycle industry is in no way safe from the reach of fakes, counterfeits and forgeries. In fact, it’s a pre y good target. There are knock-off s of everything from the mechanical parts to gear and accessories. The diff erence with these forgeries though, unlike a ripped seam in a pair of fake designer jeans, is that a ripped seam in a motorcycle jacket could cost you a skin gra . Modern Moto wanted to know if we could tell the diff erence between real and counterfeit gear, so without much eff ort, we were able to fi nd what we believed might have been a counterfeit jacket for sale - the price looked too good to be true. Our search started with the phrase “cheap motorcycle jacket with armor” and Ali Express™, a discount shopping site off ering “compe ve prices on our 100 million plus product range” was a top result. Just like many other shopping sites, it’s a hub for approved vendors to sell their own products including clothing, electronics, furniture, beauty, automo ve and more. Right away, we spo ed a jacket that looked very much like the REV’IT! Airwave 14 2 from a seller listed as Robert’s Motorcycle Equipment Store. In fact, we recognized the photo as an ad that REV’IT! used during the jacket’s product launch. Upon closer look, the logos on the jacket in the photo are for uglyBROS USA, which is best known for its protec ve motorcycle jeans. Zooming in the photo, we can see where UglyBROS was superimposed over some of the REV’IT! logos, but not all. So, even if you were not familiar with these companies and the Airwave jacket, a closer look at the photo having two diff erent logos would be a red fl ag. We ordered the women's jacket to compare with the REV’IT! Airwave 2, but the bigger issue now was whether uglyBROS USA and REV’IT! were aware of the products we found. This seemed like a unique situa on where the alleged counterfeit gear is aff ec ng not just one, but two respected companies in the motorcycle industry. Our fi rst call was to uglyBROS USA in California. We spoke with Ed Mancia (EM). MM: Are you affi liated with the companies on Ali Express? EM: NO! No, not in any way. MM: Do you know there are sellers using your name, logo and tagline? EM: Yes. MM: Do you try to stop them? EM: Yes, repeatedly, but they just pop back up in a few weeks with another name. It’s a never-ending ba le. It is bad for us because they are such inferior quality that people buy from them and call us for a refund that we cannot give and the actual seller is long gone. The only place to buy (uglyBROS products) is directly from uglyBROS USA. Ali Express™ off ers shoppers “Guaranteed Genuine” product protec on. According to the website, “On AliExpress.com you can fi nd many sellers who off er Guaranteed Genuine products. All Guaranteed Genuine products have been verifi ed by Ali Express™. Should you s ll receive a counterfeit product, yo H[]H[Y[ \[[YY K'HY[H]]¸'X[H[\ \'HH[\]\ Z[\œܘ[KH^\\\H[\Y^B \\XXۋ\H\]۝\Hۂ]ؙ\ۙوؙ\8&\[ܘXH\]Z\Y[