The following message was posted yesterday on SvoёMesto’s (SM) website:
“SMtec GmbH is the owner of several trademarks and design protections in different markets around the world. In order to protect our customers, our partners and our company, we feel impelled to keep records on trademark infringements and to initiate legal actions against breaches without further warning. A breach is defined by using mentioned protected trademarks to advertise for and/ or the distribution of counterfeit products, as well as products using these trademarks, that have not been given permission to do so. A breach can and will be prosecuted retrospectively to the day the trademark has been filed.
“In case you have a justified concern having committed a breach through no fault on your own or having bought a counterfeit product unwillingly or unintentionally or in case you want to report sales of counterfeits, please use the form down below to contact us for clarification.”
A precise notification of intent - and a message that UK sellers of clones marketed with the Kayfun brand name or boxed in SM packaging should heed, and quickly too in our opinion. The wording of the warning is clear and measured. This is not a polite email from a solicitor asking that the content be removed from a store, to us this looks like a clear indication that those who infringe on the registered marks of the business will be noted, traced and acted upon.
This may be a hollow warning of course, a ploy to bring uncertainty into the minds of sellers and therefore reduce the volume of counterfeit stock on the market through the idea that something could happen.
The argument of using or not using clones has resulted in much lively discussion on PotV over the years, and the comments on SM’s Facebook page are a mirror of this:
“I think you guys should lower prices. 150 vs 20 dollars for a clone. More would buy authentic if it was cheaper!”
“Two thumbs up!”
“Clones are the death sentence to those that work hard and have innovated ideas. Great call guys”
Whether you believe that clones are the work of the devil and mean less jobs and money staying in the EU where these products were innovatively and create created and initially manufactured, or that if clones can be produced and sold for less than £20 and prices of original gear would be better supported by lower costs for all, there is no doubt where the law in the UK will stand on this matter.
We saw an initial round of legal threats late last summer when Eden mods and StattQualm Gmbh contacted several UK vendors regarding cloned Squape Releoaded and Rose V2 atomisers as reported here on the forum. This seems to be a continuation of this fight against copyright and trademark infringement and we will not be surprised to hear more about this throughout the year.