Audio Transcription of Interview on Classic FM on 16 October 2006: Buy a Fake Rolex?

TONY BLEWITT:

Once again on ClassicFM we are talking intellectual property, my guest on the phone Paul Ramara, an attorney in the Anti-Counterfeiting Unit with the firm Spoor & Fisher. Paul a very good morning.

PAUL RAMARA:

Morning Tony

TONY BLEWITT:

Welcome to ClassicFM, now the question that has been sent through by one of our listeners is as follows: If I buy a fake, for example Rolex watch knowing full well that it is a fake, what is the problem? I bought it because I liked it and it works and I have no other intention of reselling it, I don’t believe that I am depriving the trade mark owner of any revenue as I can not afford the real thing anyway, so Paul what’s your answer to that.

PAUL RAMARA:

Well, Tony legally it is not wrong, it is not an offence for him/her to be buying this fake watch, but you know, we cannot afford to look at this from an individualistic point of view. The person selling the watch is obviously not going to go to China for instance to buy one watch. He is going to buy a lot of watches and that person is committing an offence.

TONY BLEWITT:

So buying one as this man or person this lady says in this question saying that I’m not going sell it, I can’t afford a real one, but your saying that the damage is done in as much that it becomes volumes.

PAUL RAMARA:

Yes, because you know we cannot afford to look at this from a individualistic point of view, more so taking into consideration the recent statistics and for example the recent global counterfeiting piracy report shows that South Africa is rated 16th amongst the top 20 countries reporting IP violation with loses amounting to 21 million. This is worrying and for as long as there is a demand, there will be a supply.

TONY BLEWITT:

I’m sure yes and this instant across we talking, watches here an example in this question the watch, but we talking about DVD’s, we talking about T-Shirts, we talking about sport shoes sporting goods in general with lots and lots of products.

PAUL RAMARA:

Yes.

TONY BLEWITT:

You said in the beginning when you answered the question that actually to be in possession of a fake anything is actually legally not an offence.

PAUL RAMARA:

Yes, if it is for personal and private use, there is nothing wrong. The problem comes in when you offering for sale counterfeit goods.

TONY BLEWITT:

So when someone comes back from wherever and at Customs they are weighing and carrying maybe they got two watches, let’s say. Will they be confiscated because it is illegal or not?

PAUL RAMARA:

Well it all depends on what you buy and if you buy same brand of watches each and every time you go overseas, that might raise suspicions.

TONY BLEWITT:

Okay all right there you are that’s the answer to that question and Paul Ramara from Spoor & Fisher thank you very much for being on ClassicFM this morning.

PAUL RAMARA:

Thanks a lot Tony you welcome.

TONY BLEWITT:

Thank you Paul bye-bye. And if you would like to send in your questions please keep those question coming in and you may be able to win yourself the 5 cd’s set of the music of Felix Mendilssohn. So go to the website Classicfm.co.za and then send us your intellectual property questions for Spoor & Fisher.

Paul Ramara

SPOOR & FISHER

Date published: 2006/10/16
Author: Paul Ramara

Tags: audio transcript classic fm fake rolex