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LEGO fight Against Chinese counterfeit LEGO

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  • AustinPowersAustinPowers GermanyMember Posts: 232
    edited January 5
    Pitfall69 said:
    As far as "experiencing the build"; aren't there services where you can rent a particular set and experience the build?


    Now that's an interesting concept. I know there are services over here where you can rent current toys for a certain amount of time, but I have not yet seen a service that rents out long EOL'ed Lego sets like Cafe Corner, Green Grocer, Millenium Falcon, Taj Mahal etc. Not that I would imagine anyone would rent out such expensive sets anyway. Common items, sure, but not highly sought after stuff like that which commands thousands of dollars each on the collectors market.

    Jern92
  • AustinPowersAustinPowers GermanyMember Posts: 232
    CCC said:
    eggshen said:
    I don't understand the "I only buy retired sets from Lepin" argument. It seems like a slippery slope.

    If you think about it, every set is eventually retired, so if one waits long enough you can use this argument on every set. And since it will eventually retire, you may as well buy it from Lepin now instead of later. 

    Every Lepin purchase is essentially a thumbs up to them and their products (current LEGO products and retired). 

    I guess mostly I just don't get the concept of "needing" counterfeit items to complete a collection. I know many types of collectors, I don't know anyone that buys a reproduction firearm, statue, painting, or toy to fill in gaps in their collection. They save up to buy the real item or they decide that they will collect other items to fill in their collection.

    I doubt anyone right now is admiring their counterfeit Mona Lisa and thinking to themselves "I know that this is not the real one, but I would say that the brushstrokes on this canvas are as good if not better than the original, plus the price was much better. Maybe I should get that counterfeit Last Supper I've been eyeing and while I'm at it I should see if anyone has copied Roy Lichtenstein or Rammellzee so I can pick that up for cheaper. I'm sure none of the artists will mind".

    Does not compute.

    I fully understand people using fakes. These are often people that want to experience building the set and sometimes displaying the set but cannot afford the set. For some people, it doesn't matter if it has Lego on the studs. It is not necessarily about completeness of a set or series.

    I've never built a lepin set but have seen one and spoken to the person that built it. He told me he enjoyed the build as much as similar genuine modulars. For him it was have that experience with a fake, or not at all. I suggested maybe BLing the set with alternative colours and some substitutes, but he doesn't like the BL process for large sets, and he doesn't MOC either. 


    Similar here. My reason (other than pure curiosity) for buying my first Lepin set at all (Green Grocer) was that I always liked that set, but was in my "dark ages" when it was around for purchase from Lego. And by now it commands prices on the aftermarket that are just ridiculous for what you get. I could afford to pay that kind of money for an original, but it just seems like a total waste. I mean, for the price of ONE original MISB Green Grocer on the aftermarket I can buy the entire current range of available modulars including AS, and still have a lot of money left for other sets. Think about that for a moment and then understand why I call the aftermarket prices ridiculous.

    Imho one also can't compare the situation to that of the art market. Why? There is only one original Mona Lisa (ok, some argue there are actually two or three, but let's not get into that discussion), hence the value of that piece of art. Same with the Last Supper, or any other piece of original art.

    Lego sets otoh are mass produced items, even long EOL'ed sets like GG etc. They are no pieces of art worth thousands of dollars. One might even argue (and I certainly would, after having built both the Lepin GG as well as orignal Lego modulars of later years) that when it comes to value for money (and design quality and building techniques), current Modulars are far better than the older ones. Actually, my main reason for liking GG so much (as well as HH) is the abundant use of sand-green parts, one of my favorite Lego colours.

    And as for the completionist argument, I personally am certainly no completionist collector. Otherwise I would have bought all the other retired Modulars from Lepin as well. Hell, I didn't even buy the PS before it was retired last year, nor do I intend to buy it in the future.

    Of course, the argument "I only buy EOL'ed" can be a slippery slope, as eggshen said, but at least for me personally, it means that I would only consider Lepin for sets that were long EOL'ed before Lepin produced them. Then again, I am not in the market for any more Lepin sets anyway, because by now I have the three EOL'ed sets that interested me the most in the first place (GG, TH and HH). There is only one other long EOL'ed set that would really interest me as a MISB set, and I am absolutely certain that Lepin will never produce it, and that is 926 (or 493 in the US) Command Centre ;-)

  • AustinPowersAustinPowers GermanyMember Posts: 232
    nkx1 said:

    I also wanted to address something that @CCC stated regarding people being able to afford a particular set. I can't speak for everyone obviously, but I'm fortunate enough to be able to buy pretty much any Lego set I want within reason, new or retired. However, there is little chance I would spend, say, $1,500 on a product instead of purchasing a virtually identical product for $150. It just doesn't make sense to most people. Therefore, buying Lepin may not necessarily an issue of affordability, but rather an issue of being judicious with the use of one's money. The ethical aspect of this issue can be debated indefinitely, of course.


    My situation exactly.
  • AustinPowersAustinPowers GermanyMember Posts: 232
    Interesting comments about AliExpress. I tend to be overly cautious with online purchases (bad experience). 
    From my personal experience I can agree that I too was sceptical at first about using AliExpress. But after having done so three times a now know that it is definitely safer than ebay, where I actually did get scammed once, even though that's long ago. But as @kizkiz said, AliExpress is one of the safest places for buyers around. I really wouldn't have thought that before. And no, I am not trying to convince anyone to buy fake Lego either, just sharing my personal experience.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,009
    I find aliexpress very safe. I must have had 350 orders there in the last year or so. Mainly electronics parts in the £0.25 - £1.00 range, with the order value usually under £2, with occasional orders up to £10 or so. There has been the odd minifigure order too, usually for single minifigs. I think I have had problems with only three orders in that time, and all were refunded when I put in a claim for non-delivery.

    The downsides are delivery time and the number of clicks necessary to confirm receipt of items.
  • AustinPowersAustinPowers GermanyMember Posts: 232
    edited January 5

    Interesting tidbit about renting Lego here in Germany. I have now searched for it and found a site called bauduu.de, where one can rent Lego sets for quite reasonable prices.

    But as I suspected, most of the available sets are current ones, with only very few EOL'ed ones like the Tumbler, Pet Shop or some of the older Technic flagship sets.

    Nevertheless, I think I might give them a try for a couple of months. That way I can keep some of my larger sets sealed and still enjoy the build - or try out some like the Tumbler or Ewok Village or the Death Star, which I would never buy (not even from Lepin) but still like to know what the building experience is like.

    Thanks @Pitfall69 for bringing that subject to my attention. I would never have thought something like this existed otherwise.

  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,288
    Be aware that the larger sets will be the most popular, people will hold on to them longer so you won't get them often. 
  • blogzillyblogzilly Columbus, OhioMember Posts: 523
    You can take sentences out of a multi paragraph post and then refute whatever I write. It's called taking something out of context. I've been guilty of the same thing. 

    My point, simplified, was that you can't SOLELY rely on Customs. Or Governments. Or any one single solution. Probably need to simplify my responses.
    AanchirKerre
  • blogzillyblogzilly Columbus, OhioMember Posts: 523
    Has anyone noticed price drops on actual LEGO sets on the secondary market for items that LEPIN has had on the market for quite some time? I would be very curious to see actual tracked data on that, something comprehensive.
  • JodyJody Eastern USAMember Posts: 104
    I'm seen a couple Grand Emporium sets near me on Craigslist for $175-$200 over the last month. Not sure if that is much of a drop. I know if I were holding a bunch as a reseller, i'd probably be thinking now is the time to start getting off them.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,009
    blogzilly said:
    Has anyone noticed price drops on actual LEGO sets on the secondary market for items that LEPIN has had on the market for quite some time? I would be very curious to see actual tracked data on that, something comprehensive.
    I doubt there will be a price drop, just fewer buyers so longer holding times to sell. As that's only if those buyers were possibly considering the original. If there is a large differential between the original and fake, I doubt they were ever in the market for the original.
  • scoiltreasascoiltreasa Ireland Member Posts: 1,117
    Sorry to burst in usually avoid this topic but just saw this. Is there a moc of this someone made (I know they tend to steal designs but I had not seen this before)

  • kizkizkizkiz londonMember Posts: 78
  • scoiltreasascoiltreasa Ireland Member Posts: 1,117
    kizkiz said:
    @scoiltreasa yes, it's a stolen moc
    I presumed so. Don't think all the clone brands combined have the skills to make it. Does anyone have a link to the moc/instructions.
  • kizkizkizkiz londonMember Posts: 78
  • scoiltreasascoiltreasa Ireland Member Posts: 1,117
  • bricknationbricknation Member Posts: 547
    Two months ago I've left few reviews on fake minifigures sold on amazon saying that they're fake and illegal and unlicensed. Today I checked to see what happened and it turns out that out 5 out of 6 items I commented on got deleted from the catalogue. 
    LegogramcatwranglerVorpalRyuPitfall69SprinkleOtterAllBrickrichoJackad7
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,009
    You'll probably find the same sellers are selling the same figures under different catalogue entries.
  • Glacierfalls265Glacierfalls265 USAMember Posts: 146
    Does LEPIN have anything original? I've only seen news about them ripping off all of LEGO's designs and those of AFOLs. If they do, LEGO could steal them and recreate them in LEGO! Ha! 

    In all seriousness though, I wish they would at least give credit to independent designers, like the Ideas submissions, because even though those designers gave the rights and the ideas to LEGO, it was only to LEGO and to no one else. I would hate to have my idea stolen. Oh well, if it doesn't get 10,000, maybe it'll be low enough on the radar that LEPIN won't notice it. 
  • Muftak1Muftak1 Somewhere cold, probably rainingMember Posts: 99
    I believe Lele are working with a MOC designer to turn his Falcon Hangar into a set... according to this :

    https://www.facebook.com/ShopofNinjaBricks/posts/1211862155562688

    hope this is ok to post here - if not feel free to delete
  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 1,582
    Muftak1 said:
    I believe Lele are working with a MOC designer to turn his Falcon Hangar into a set... according to this :

    https://www.facebook.com/ShopofNinjaBricks/posts/1211862155562688

    hope this is ok to post here - if not feel free to delete
    Except according to someone else, that guy isn't the original design, he slightly modified the designs from this creator:

    http://www.moc-pages.com/moc.php/293188
    stluxMuftak1Jackad7
  • Muftak1Muftak1 Somewhere cold, probably rainingMember Posts: 99
    VorpalRyu said:
    Muftak1 said:
    I believe Lele are working with a MOC designer to turn his Falcon Hangar into a set... according to this :

    https://www.facebook.com/ShopofNinjaBricks/posts/1211862155562688

    hope this is ok to post here - if not feel free to delete
    Except according to someone else, that guy isn't the original design, he slightly modified the designs from this creator:

    http://www.moc-pages.com/moc.php/293188
    So now there's ANOTHER thief!

    It really is a pity to see original designers getting ripped off. 
    Jackad7
  • kizkizkizkiz londonMember Posts: 78
    Saw this pic from the lele factory on a Facebook group. Now we know where they do their research!


    CCC
  • masterX244masterX244 GermanyMember Posts: 339
    edited January 9
    ^probably time for @Huw to somehow detect them and shadowbanning them in a subtle way
    Edit: @Muftak1 possible to get that content mirrored off-facebook?
    Jackad7
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,009
    It looks like he has beheaded a number of Disney figures, so cannot be all bad!
  • happyskunkyhappyskunky Michigan Member Posts: 132
    Lego needs to sue ebay for allow this
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,288
  • SprinkleOtterSprinkleOtter Member Posts: 2,136
    ^Looks like someone is trying to rip off seashells... Better tell the ocean...
    monkeyhangerdavetheoxygenmanJern92AllBrickVorpalRyuJackad7Bumblepants
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,009
    What do people think of these?


    They are seashell shaped chocolates, a bit like ones made by many other companies, including Guylian. Unless they start having Guylian's G on them (like having LEGO on the studs), then they are not infringing Guylian. Look in the seahorse's tail, on the top of the shell, etc. You can see their equivalent of the LEGO on the studs.



    I find them too sickly.











  • catwranglercatwrangler Northern IrelandMember Posts: 1,325
    For some reason I find myself thinking of those old marbled bricks, can't think why...
    MaffyDdavetheoxygenmanAllBrickVorpalRyuJackad7
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 3,743 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 10,166
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 6,543
    ^ Winner!

    (It is truly disturbing that this was the second thing that came to my mind.  The first was 'If @CCC sells sea shells by the sea shore, the shells CCC sells are sea shells, I'm sure.')
    Pitfall69VorpalRyucatwranglerCCCpharmjodAanchirstluxBumblepants
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 3,743 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 10,166
    For some reason, I have a hankering for some Taco Bell.
    VorpalRyuricecakeSumoLegopharmjodgmonkey76
  • BobflipBobflip Member Posts: 274
    VorpalRyu said:
    Muftak1 said:
    I believe Lele are working with a MOC designer to turn his Falcon Hangar into a set... according to this :

    https://www.facebook.com/ShopofNinjaBricks/posts/1211862155562688

    hope this is ok to post here - if not feel free to delete
    Except according to someone else, that guy isn't the original design, he slightly modified the designs from this creator:

    http://www.moc-pages.com/moc.php/293188
    I was wondering what was going on there... this is the MOC I thought it was going to be when I clicked the first link!
  • Legopassion8Legopassion8 6011 MILES from Bora BoraMember Posts: 1,005
    edited January 13
    Pitfall69 said:
    Hell yea! Time Cop was an awesome movie! :p



  • mldj77mldj77 Philadelphia, PAMember Posts: 61
  • CaptainLegoCaptainLego FloridaMember Posts: 41
    With Lego trying to expand in the region where these knockoffs come from, I have to wonder how they'll go about doing this.

    What I want to know is why these companies can't find their own thing to do like Mega Bloks has in the form of video game themed building sets. Say what you want about MB. At least they found their own niche instead of blatantly ripping off MOCs and official Lego sets. 
    Muftak1stluxSprinkleOtterAllBrickPitfall69SumoLegoJackad7
  • BillybrownBillybrown UKMember Posts: 747
    Has anyone reported sellers of Lep*n on the likes of Amazon and ebay? If so were they thrown off? Found one seller with over 90 items listed all Lep*n.
  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 1,582
    Has anyone reported sellers of Lep*n on the likes of Amazon and ebay? If so were they thrown off? Found one seller with over 90 items listed all Lep*n.
    I know that there is no point reporting sellers on Gumtree, they are just relisted a day later.
    SprinkleOtterJackad7
  • Glacierfalls265Glacierfalls265 USAMember Posts: 146
    No the worst are the sneaky sellers on Ebay and such that advertise sets that are only a fraction lower than the regular retail price, and the title and everything says LEGO but they're actually trying to sell LEPIN for the LEGO price!! 
    SprinkleOtter
  • nkx1nkx1 Member Posts: 699
    edited January 23
    What I want to know is why these companies can't find their own thing to do like Mega Bloks has in the form of video game themed building sets. Say what you want about MB. At least they found their own niche instead of blatantly ripping off MOCs and official Lego sets. 

    My perception is that the answer is pretty simple: money. If manufacturing and selling wannabe Lego sets is considered acceptable in China (which it apparently is), and a company can choose to make wannabe Lego sets (for a big profit) or original-design building block sets (for little profit), then who in their right mind would make original-design building block sets?


    Obviously, the foregoing excludes the ethical aspect of the argument.

    CaptainLego
  • Glacierfalls265Glacierfalls265 USAMember Posts: 146
    I wonder if Chinese industries have ever made anything original that another country has ripped off, or would it not be worth ripping off? I kinda wonder what everyone else would think if a Chinese company tried to sue someone for copyright infringement, it might get laughed out of the courts! 
  • Glacierfalls265Glacierfalls265 USAMember Posts: 146
    ^ Nevermind, I retract my case, a Chinese company sued Apple for allegedly stealing their designs for iPhones. Although it seems these things are ruled against the non-Chinese companies in the lower courts, but then overturned in the upper courts? Law is confusing...
  • nkx1nkx1 Member Posts: 699
     Law is confusing...

    That's probably an understatement! Townhall.com states that: There are at least 5,000 federal criminal laws, with 10,000-300,000 regulations that can be enforced criminally. Of course, this is excepting the numerous state and local laws and regulations dependent on where you reside.


    Good luck trying to comply with all that! In fact, I'm not sure that Lepin et al. can or should be held accountable for compliance with U.S. law, given how expansive (read: ridiculous) our laws and regulations seem to be.

    Glacierfalls265
  • Glacierfalls265Glacierfalls265 USAMember Posts: 146
    ^ Wow! And no wonder some of the laws aren't even known, imagine trying to read the books to try to figure out what laws you're breaking without even knowing it! 
  • AllBrickAllBrick UKMember Posts: 1,197
    I buy a lot of used Duplo and normally find MB and other versions of Duplo which are very easy to distinguish from the real deal without much effort, even by sound.

    I have recently come across a brand called Unico. Most of their bricks look very similar, they also feel and sound the same as Duplo. You have to look closely and you will see there are no stamps inside the studs, it does say Unico though slap bang in the middle of the brick quite clearly.

    Just a heads up incase any other grown up person buys large amounts of second hand toddlers Lego.
    Switchfoot55Glacierfalls265
  • EvilTwinEvilTwin UKMember Posts: 56
    Don't know if this has been posted before. 
    Apparently some Lego minifigure knockoffs in China are so good that the local boss of Lego can't tell the difference.

    "Lego copycats fool China boss"
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-38729557
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,288
    It's on the main lunchtime news too. Not sure who's stupider - Lego for employing him or the 'boss' for allowing himself to get in that position.
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