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Beats sues Chinese counterfeiters for billions as Apple sale nears completion

post #1 of 48
Thread Starter 
Headphone maker Beats has filed suit against a number of Chinese counterfeiters, alleging trademark infringement and seeking damages that could run into the billions of dollars just weeks before the company officially becomes an Apple subsidiary.


Photo via Paul Stamatiou.


"This action has been filed by Beats to combat online counterfeiters who trade upon Beats' reputation and goodwill by selling and/or offering for sale unlicensed and counterfeit products featuring Beats' trademarks," the filing reads. "The Defendants create [fake internet storefronts] by the hundreds or even thousands and design them to appear to be selling genuine Beats products, while actually selling low-quality Counterfeit Beats Products to unknowing consumers."

Attorneys for Beats paint the counterfeiters as part of a sophisticated ring that has constructed their business to operate in such a way as to maximize profits while minimizing the chance they will be discovered by law enforcement, shipping fake Beats products "in small quantities via international mail to minimize detection by U.S. Customs and Border Protection" while disguising their identities. Counterfeit sites like those Beats is going after are estimated to generate more than $135 billion in annual sales, the company says.

In addition to seeking an importation ban and cessation of sales into the U.S., Beats is asking for the forfeiture of all profits realized from the sale of counterfeit headphones - a sum that is nearly impossible to accurately quantify, but likely runs into the billions of dollars. Alternative, Dr. Dre's outfit will accept $2 million for each incident of infringement and $100,000 per domain name.

The company also wants internet registrars to seize the offending domain names and turn them over to Beats's control.

It is unclear exactly what Beats hopes to gain from the suit -- with damages likely to be awarded, but unlikely to be paid -- though the company has pursued similar litigation in the past. A nearly identical lawsuit filed in 2013 resulted in an order for the seizure of some 1,472 domain names, 50 PayPal accounts, and 14 "online marketplace accounts."

Recently-confirmed Judge Manish S. Shah will oversee the case in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
post #2 of 48

Apple is subsequently found guilty of copying the Chinese knockoffs.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
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Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
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post #3 of 48
"It is unclear exactly what Beats hopes to gain from the suit ..."

Good luck.

"Intellectual" and "property" are two words that the Chinese government doesn't like much.

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post #4 of 48
wow, where have I been? Asian companies copying American made goods? I'm shocked this is going on (sarcasm).
post #5 of 48

Well… So now we know what's really behind the  "China's state-owned media calls iOS location tracking a 'national security concern" story from earlier today.

post #6 of 48

The sound quality is so bad I would consider Beats to be a Chinese knockoff.

post #7 of 48

Apple could make the 3 billions or most of it in this suit.

 

Caching!  Best purchase ever.

post #8 of 48

Good luck with any suit against the chinese. They don't play by rule. Yup. When was the last time that the chinese didn't copy others' products?

post #9 of 48
I saw many stalls selling fake Beats headphones back in December 2012 at the Template Street Markets, Hong Kong.
post #10 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

The sound quality is so bad I would consider Beats to be a Chinese knockoff.

They are probably selling far more counterfeits than real ones which doesn't help your poor quality argument. All the reviewers have been duped. Lol
post #11 of 48

Maybe Apple should delay the purchase of Beats until this legal matter is resolved. :D

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post #12 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post
 

The sound quality is so bad I would consider Beats to be a Chinese knockoff.

I didn't know the chinese were fans of base heavy sound. 

post #13 of 48
I scoured the Beats website and googled for information about the basic frequency response of Beats products (headphones, earbuds, speakers)... not. one. word. about it. A search of the Beats websites for "frequency response" yields "no results".

Seriously nothing, aside from a few third-party DIY audiophiles on Google that made FR graphs comparing various headphones... and those are all over the map.

Every mainstream tech, news, reporting and review outlet is trumpeting the greatness and cool of Beats products (and making money from that song and dance), and yet, not a SINGLE ONE mentions the thing that matters most to these devices: the accuracy of their reproduction. The simplest measure, "frequency response" is non-existent. Instead "what matters" is all tangled up into clever double-speak and marketing copy and "cool"...

What a shallow, horrible scam!

When you are completely hiding the very specifications that make a truly great pair of headphones, and hiding those behind a bunch of highly polished web pages and marketing-speak? That's the worst kind of 'snake oil' salesmanship and misdirection out there.

Either Apple has been taken in by it, or the buy has nothing to do with the headphones (although, judging by the headphone quality of iPods, etc. Apple doesn't seem to have much clarity or much vested there, really. When it comes to headphones, they only seem to practice the Samsung "good enough" approach).

When a product has great "aesthetic" design, but not much else in delivered quality, what good is it? Honestly, what good is an awesome looking, well-manufactured pair of headphones that sound awful? Other than adding to a wardrobe ensemble?

From the few FR graphs I did see by googling it, these are really REALLY bad headphones...

I won't judge until I hear them for myself, but I'm not sure i"m going to bother, considering their clear level of dishonesty (hiding the facts that matter to a product like this).

From what I've seen though, I'm not sure the "real thing" is going to be any better than the knockoffs.............
post #14 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

I scoured the Beats website and googled for information about the basic frequency response of Beats products (headphones, earbuds, speakers)... not. one. word. about it. A search of the Beats websites for "frequency response" yields "no results".

Seriously nothing, aside from a few third-party DIY audiophiles on Google that made FR graphs comparing various headphones... and those are all over the map.

Every mainstream tech, news, reporting and review outlet is trumpeting the greatness and cool of Beats products (and making money from that song and dance), and yet, not a SINGLE ONE mentions the thing that matters most to these devices: the accuracy of their reproduction. The simplest measure, "frequency response" is non-existent. Instead "what matters" is all tangled up into clever double-speak and marketing copy and "cool"...

What a shallow, horrible scam!

When you are completely hiding the very specifications that make a truly great pair of headphones, and hiding those behind a bunch of highly polished web pages and marketing-speak? That's the worst kind of 'snake oil' salesmanship and misdirection out there.

Either Apple has been taken in by it, or the buy has nothing to do with the headphones (although, judging by the headphone quality of iPods, etc. Apple doesn't seem to have much clarity or much vested there, really. When it comes to headphones, they only seem to practice the Samsung "good enough" approach).

When a product has great "aesthetic" design, but not much else in delivered quality, what good is it? Honestly, what good is an awesome looking, well-manufactured pair of headphones that sound awful? Other than adding to a wardrobe ensemble?

From the few FR graphs I did see by googling it, these are really REALLY bad headphones...

I won't judge until I hear them for myself, but I'm not sure i"m going to bother, considering their clear level of dishonesty (hiding the facts that matter to a product like this).

From what I've seen though, I'm not sure the "real thing" is going to be any better than the knockoffs.............

 

Was there ever point prior to the sale of Beats to Apple where the Beats board of directors contemplated a sale of the company to anyone else?

 

Could Apple have negotiated the price down even further? I think they could've.

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post #15 of 48
There is no way IMHO Apple were not made aware of this. Any company take over such as this would have very specific limitations on what Beats could do from the time of the initial agreement to when it is concluded. If my suspicions are right then one wonders how this factors into the whole deal.
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post #16 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

There is no way IMHO Apple were not made aware of this. Any company take over such as this would have very specific limitations on what Beats could do from the time of the initial agreement to when it is concluded. If my suspicions are right then one wonders how this factors into the whole deal.

For Apple to take over a company at the very beginnings of a presumably long and expensive legal battle is not good for Apple.

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GOA

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post #17 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post
 

Maybe Apple should delay the purchase of Beats until this legal matter is resolved. :D

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


For Apple to take over a company at the very beginnings of a presumably long and expensive legal battle is not good for Apple.

 

Baloney and baloney.  There is little to no down-side for Apple in this.  And with the help of Apple's legal team, this lawsuit has a greater chance for success.

post #18 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

When it comes to headphones, they only seem to practice the Samsung "good enough" approach).
 

 

And they shouldn't do any more, in my opinion, because it's a waste. Those people who are into audio and sound use headphones that in some cases costs more than their iPhones and iPads. There is no way that any "Beats" headphone will ever be good enough for those people. And I'm one of those people.

post #19 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

There is no way IMHO Apple were not made aware of this. Any company take over such as this would have very specific limitations on what Beats could do from the time of the initial agreement to when it is concluded. If my suspicions are right then one wonders how this factors into the whole deal.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post
 

 

Was there ever point prior to the sale of Beats to Apple where the Beats board of directors contemplated a sale of the company to anyone else?

 

Could Apple have negotiated the price down even further? I think they could've.

Why would you care how much Apple paid for Beats, the price could have been doubled and wouldn't have affected Apple in slightest.

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post #20 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post
 

 

And they shouldn't do any more, in my opinion, because it's a waste. Those people who are into audio and sound use headphones that in some cases costs more than their iPhones and iPads. There is no way that any "Beats" headphone will ever be good enough for those people. And I'm one of those people.

Me to, Beats headphones are just overpriced fashion accessories for children and teenagers and young adults.  A pair Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro's is so vastly superior then a similar priced pair of Beats that it is almost comical.

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post #21 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

Why would you care how much Apple paid for Beats, the price could have been doubled and wouldn't have affected Apple in slightest.

There seems to be a popular misconception that it doesn't matter how one spends one's money if there is a lot of it.

Here's the thing... A company that wastes it's money won't stay wealthy forever.

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post #22 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

When it comes to headphones, they only seem to practice the Samsung "good enough" approach).

 

And they shouldn't do any more, in my opinion, because it's a waste. Those people who are into audio and sound use headphones that in some cases costs more than their iPhones and iPads. There is no way that any "Beats" headphone will ever be good enough for those people. And I'm one of those people.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

There is no way IMHO Apple were not made aware of this. Any company take over such as this would have very specific limitations on what Beats could do from the time of the initial agreement to when it is concluded. If my suspicions are right then one wonders how this factors into the whole deal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

 

Was there ever point prior to the sale of Beats to Apple where the Beats board of directors contemplated a sale of the company to anyone else?

Could Apple have negotiated the price down even further? I think they could've.
Why would you care how much Apple paid for Beats, the price could have been doubled and wouldn't have affected Apple in slightest.

You all might reflect in the fact that many, many audiophiles bemoaned the arrival and subsequent popularity of iPods and its super lossy music in exactly the same way. I wonder if any of you agreed with those assessments, and never bought an iPod. Or, if you did, trashed it.

My guess: you did not. If so, you're a bunch of hypocrites on this issue.
post #23 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

There seems to be a popular misconception that it doesn't matter how one spends one's money if there is a lot of it.

Here's the thing... A company that wastes it's money won't stay wealthy forever.

It would only become a problem if Apple stopped making money... which I can't imagine will happen in my lifetime.

Apple has a ridiculous income. They don't have a finite amount of cash... they're constantly adding more.

They make enough money to buy a "Beats" every 30 days if they wanted to.

And it would only be considered a waste if they didn't gain anything from it. Even if we don't know why Apple bought Beats... they know.

In short... Apple had the money to cover the Beats purchase... and they can make that money back in a month.
post #24 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 

Apple is subsequently found guilty of copying the Chinese knockoffs.

No, but they were just found guilty of patent infringement in regards to Siri

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post #25 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

You all might reflect in the fact that many, many audiophiles bemoaned the arrival and subsequent popularity of iPods and its super lossy music in exactly the same way. I wonder if any of you agreed with those assessments, and never bought an iPod. Or, if you did, trashed it.

My guess: you did not. If so, you're a bunch of hypocrites on this issue.

 

I didn't follow any of those arguments back then, but haven't iPods always had the ability to store and play non lossy audio files? So I'm not sure what the issue would have been.

post #26 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


There seems to be a popular misconception that it doesn't matter how one spends one's money if there is a lot of it.

Here's the thing... A company that wastes it's money won't stay wealthy forever.

Again, why do care, it's not your company. As long as the company is profitable, makes their shareholders money, anything they do with their profits is absolutely none of our business. 

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post #27 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post
 

Again, why do care, it's not your company. 

 

Actually it is. Apple is mine. It's my company.

 

It's also many other people's company too on this forum. Anybody who is a shareholder is an owner of the company.

 

Definition of 'Shareholder'

Any person, company or other institution that owns at least one share of a company’s stock. Shareholders are a company's owners. 

 

http://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/shareholder.asp

post #28 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

My guess: you did not. If so, you're a bunch of hypocrites on this issue.

I've owned one iPod, the first model, I hated it, horrible battery life and I couldn't stand that it was impossible to see the directory structure when it was plugged into the computer, one of the reasons why I have yet to own an iPhone. Back then I preferred my Marantz Mini Disk recorder/player, Tascom DAT player and Nokia Communicator 9500 with a 512MB MMC card for MP3's. I had a few solid state MP3's players over the years but they mostly came from iRiver with the only exception being the latest one from Fiio, I wanted one with a built in headphone AMP. I mostly use my phone and tablets for music now which I have to say the Nexus 10 is my favorite for just listening to music, I didn't know this when I bought it but it has Wolfson DAC and a Tascom DR-680 for recordings, though my iPad does a pretty good job of that when connected to my Mackie dock so I mostly use the Tascom with my Canon 5D II when filming or recording sound on the go. Yes, I 'm serious about sound.

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post #29 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post

It would only become a problem if Apple stopped making money... which I can't imagine will happen in my lifetime.

Apple has a ridiculous income. They don't have a finite amount of cash... they're constantly adding more.

They make enough money to buy a "Beats" every 30 days if they wanted to.

And it would only be considered a waste if they didn't gain anything from it. Even if we don't know why Apple bought Beats... they know.

In short... Apple had the money to cover the Beats purchase... and they can make that money back in a month.

 

I trust Tim Cook with the stewardship of the company's funds in its current unbelievably good financial condition. As a general rule, Apple has always, always been very cautious with the use of their cash.

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post #30 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post
 

 

Actually it is. Apple is mine. It's my company.

 

It's also many other people's company too on this forum. Anybody who is a shareholder is an owner of the company.

 

Definition of 'Shareholder'

Any person, company or other institution that owns at least one share of a company’s stock. Shareholders are a company's owners. 

 

http://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/shareholder.asp

 

Yea thanks, I've worked for one of the largest banks in the world specifically programming applications that where used for institutional trading for the last 15 years. I know what a shareholder is and as a holder myself I have never thought for an absolute second that those shares mean that my tiny investment affords me a say in the companies affairs, regardless of the literal definition.


Edited by Relic - 7/11/14 at 5:21pm
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post #31 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

Why would you care how much Apple paid for Beats, the price could have been doubled and wouldn't have affected Apple in slightest.

Where did I say I did?
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post #32 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


You all might reflect in the fact that many, many audiophiles bemoaned the arrival and subsequent popularity of iPods and its super lossy music in exactly the same way. I wonder if any of you agreed with those assessments, and never bought an iPod. Or, if you did, trashed it.

My guess: you did not. If so, you're a bunch of hypocrites on this issue.

What on earth did my post have to do with what you are saying? Please don't aggregate my post in with non related ones. In my post I simply speculated that Apple most likely were informed of this Beats law suit. If not then ... wow ...!
Edited by digitalclips - 7/11/14 at 5:18pm
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post #33 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

For Apple to take over a company at the very beginnings of a presumably long and expensive legal battle is not good for Apple.

That was my point, Apple surely had to know, if not then I would have thought it could effect the agreement. If they did then what gives? Fascinating isn't it?
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post #34 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Where did I say I did?

Sorry, you were accidentally lumped in there with Apple ][.

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post #35 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

Sorry, you were accidentally lumped in there with Apple ][.

OMG NOoooooo never do that! 1wink.gif
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post #36 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

I trust Tim Cook with the stewardship of the company's funds in its current unbelievably good financial condition. As a general rule, Apple has always, always been very cautious with the use of their cash.

Ok... it sounded like you thought Apple was one of the companies who wastes money and won't stay wealthy because of it.

Glad we're on the same page then 1smile.gif
post #37 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post
 

 I know what a shareholder is and as a holder myself I have never thought for an absolute second that those shares mean that my tiny investment affords me a say in the companies affairs, regardless of the literal definition.

 

You should, because, damn, you have a ton of Apple shares! Way more than me!:lol:

 

I don't think that anybody on this forum owns more AAPL than you do.

 

Your original post came to my email inbox, and I of course saw your entire, extremely detailed financial history of AAPL. You've obviously edited your post since then, but don't worry, I wont divulge any of that information. 

 

If I owned as many shares that you do, then I would demand private concierge service whenever I stepped foot into an Apple store. My head would be much bigger than it already is.:D 

post #38 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


OMG NOoooooo never do that! 1wink.gif

 

You should feel honored, even it were only a mixup and for a brief moment.8-)

post #39 of 48

There's a snowball's chance in hell that Beats will ever see any substantial amount of money from that lawsuit.

post #40 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

I scoured the Beats website and googled for information about the basic frequency response of Beats products (headphones, earbuds, speakers)... not. one. word. about it. A search of the Beats websites for "frequency response" yields "no results".

Seriously nothing, aside from a few third-party DIY audiophiles on Google that made FR graphs comparing various headphones... and those are all over the map.

Every mainstream tech, news, reporting and review outlet is trumpeting the greatness and cool of Beats products (and making money from that song and dance), and yet, not a SINGLE ONE mentions the thing that matters most to these devices: the accuracy of their reproduction. The simplest measure, "frequency response" is non-existent. Instead "what matters" is all tangled up into clever double-speak and marketing copy and "cool"...

What a shallow, horrible scam!

When you are completely hiding the very specifications that make a truly great pair of headphones, and hiding those behind a bunch of highly polished web pages and marketing-speak? That's the worst kind of 'snake oil' salesmanship and misdirection out there.

Either Apple has been taken in by it, or the buy has nothing to do with the headphones (although, judging by the headphone quality of iPods, etc. Apple doesn't seem to have much clarity or much vested there, really. When it comes to headphones, they only seem to practice the Samsung "good enough" approach).

When a product has great "aesthetic" design, but not much else in delivered quality, what good is it? Honestly, what good is an awesome looking, well-manufactured pair of headphones that sound awful? Other than adding to a wardrobe ensemble?

From the few FR graphs I did see by googling it, these are really REALLY bad headphones...

I won't judge until I hear them for myself, but I'm not sure i"m going to bother, considering their clear level of dishonesty (hiding the facts that matter to a product like this).

From what I've seen though, I'm not sure the "real thing" is going to be any better than the knockoffs.............

That's all fine and good, as long as you know that freq response is not an indicator of sound "quality". And in fact, a wide frequency response is often an indicator of poorer quality speakers.

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