2018 Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets: Chanel’s Choices
Every year, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) collects a list of the most notorious online and physical counterfeit spots that are outside US borders. (Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets). For example, the 2017 report mentions, inter alia, the following marketplaces: DHGhate.com (China), Indiamart.com (India), Taobao.com (China), Vkontakte.com (Russia), and the shopping mall called “Pacific Mall” in Markham, Ontario, Canada (iptwins.com, 1st Oct. 2018). As part of the 2018 Comment Request from the USTR, Chanel shared its experience in a letter to the USTR on October 2, 2018.
Chanel designates fifteen websites, mainly online marketplaces, and some social networks. However, the French company specifies that it has retained only platforms “where the visibility of CHANEL counterfeits is dramatically high“. Chanel justifies its choices by the following selection criteria: the reputation of the platform; its traffic and its willingness in the implementation of preventive measures. To this end, and more precisely, Chanel refers to statistics and other information including:
- the ranking of the site in one or more countries (or in other words, its popularity locally);
- the average time a user spends on each page;
- the traffic generated by the search engines;
- the number of links to the platform concerned;
- the number of URLs denoting pages infringing its intellectual property rights;
- the selling price of the goods;
- the nature of the goods and their potential danger (especially for perfumes and cosmetics);
- the number or percentage of goods falsely represented under the Chanel brand at a “T” time.
The investment and/or the sudden success of certain platforms are also taken into consideration (for examples, Pinduoduo, Weidian.com, 4Carousell, Bukalapak, Tokopedia, Snapdeal, Coupang). Indeed, a fair share of the injected investments should be used to implement policies and procedures intended for the respect of intellectual property rights.