Not only is the study interesting, but the Assistant Professor leading the study, Renee Richardson Gosline, was my tutor in college!
In her new working paper, “Rethinking Brand Contamination,” Gosline says that people rely heavily on social cues to tell real bags from fakes. When viewing bags on a shelf, for example, study participants couldn’t discern the real from the counterfeit. However, when looking at people carrying bags, participants judged the bag’s authenticity based on the person’s overall outfit and comportment:
Basically if someone looks wealthy, most people believe their bag is real and if someone looks lower class, they assume the bag was purchased in Chinatown:
Renee also published another study called “The Real Value of Fakes,” where she interviewed hundreds of consumers who knowingly bought fake luxury apparel. She found that within two years, 46 percent of these buyers purchased the authentic version of the same product, ” even though other people could not necessarily tell the difference.”
Sounds super interesting!
You guys might remember my heated run in with fakes from a trip to China I took years ago. After I was shamefully called out for my fake Burberry scarf, I decided to leave the knock offs behind.
How do you feel about fake bags?
Read the study synopsis here.