Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Chinese Sell Crummy Goods Locally, Too

The low-quality and mislabeled goods shipped to your hometown from China don't reflect Chinese hatred for foreigners especially; if this story is any guide, that's just the way they do business. Imagine: a third of condoms being counterfeit. (And likely unsterilized, lubricated with vegetable oil, and untested for suitability to function as intended.) While it's nice to see a (single) bust put an end to an IP theft/consumer fraud/public health threat, the fact that the aggregation of fraud so dominates the market invites serious questions (how the market should be approached, how one should distinguish one's products, how consumers should be educated to seek their intended products, how things got so bad without a revolution, etc.).

Chinese assumptions about the relative trustworthiness of foreigners (Chinese trust foreign brands more than domestic brands) may bode well for high-value brands seeking access to the growing market of middle-class and wealthier Chinese.

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