Louis Vuitton has recently taken legal action against three Chinese retailers selling counterfeit goods on Taobao. The French fashion house’s famous LV monogram can been found on large selection of fake clothing, shoes and handbags circulating the online shopping platforms provided by Taobao, and according to Reuters the company is seeking compensation of RMB250,000 in a case that just got accepted by a district court in Beijing earlier this month.
We’re all familiar with Taobao – the magical website that truly has it all – from the rarest limited edition sneakers, to fake condoms, to Confederate flags to… Vietnamese brides? But what Taobao makes up for in selection it often lacks in authenticity.
In early October, the American Apparel and Footwear Association asked the United States Trade Representative to crack down and place the Alibaba Group back on its “notorious markets” list for its persistent copyright and trademark infringements. Alibaba was removed from the piracy blacklist in 2011, and Taobao in 2012, for making efforts to address concerns. Alibaba’s own Jack Ma was the cover story for Forbes last November in an in-depth review of the “massive counterfeit problem” on Taobao, outlining the biggest question for Ma: “Can he crack down on fakes enough to be viewed globally as someone who respects the sanctity of brands sold on his sites–but not enough to sink the small-time sellers who remain his rice bowl?”
If more big name companies like Louis Vuitton come forward to take similar legal actions, Ma might just have to pick a side.
[Image via Business Insider]