The Funniest Product Knockoffs

  • Bad Buys

    We’ve all encountered knockoff products on the street, usually being hawked by overzealous salespeople. Sometimes a knockoff can be a decent way of getting your dream product for less … if you know up front that it’s a fake. But if not, it’s just a waste of your money. Photo Credit: back_garage
    Surprising Facts
  • Surprising Facts

    Knockoffs are a significant part of the global economy. According to some estimates, counterfeit products are a $600 billion a year global business. Moreover, these products may cost U.S. businesses $200 billion a year. But there may be some silver lining to that fake Fendi bag. According to a recent study, knockoffs may actually help sell the original product because consumers who may not have been eager to throw down big bucks end up realizing the “inferiority of the fakes.” Here is our roundup of the most blatant and bizarre knockoff products we could find from around the world. Would you buy any of these? Photo Credit: Pink Sherbet Photography
    Arm and Hammer
  • Arm and Hammer

    I never really understood what the name Arm & Hammer had to do with baking soda, but if the goal was to imply that it was powerful, then I think this Chinese knockoff may actually have a better title. There’s just something much more threatening about a hatchet… Photo Credit: kafka4prez
  • Starbucks

    It’s one of the most recognizable brand names in the world, which explains why there have been multiple attempts abroad to spoof it. One infamous mall in China, which we will mention more later, actually has a shop called Bucksstar Coffee. It’s hard to get a more blatant rip-off than that. Then there’s this photo that we found on Flickr that clearly uses the Starbucks logo for a coffee shop under a different name. Photo Credit: rzganoza
  • 7-Eleven

    Starbucks isn’t the only chain store to get ripped off abroad. We found this hilarious picture of a fake 7-Eleven in Asia. All the store owners did was replace the number, otherwise the trademark colors and layout of the sign are all the same. Which name do you think is catchier? Photo Credit: Wm Jas
  • Legos

    Forget about Legos, say hello to Bricks, the wonderful new children’s toy from China that is … a complete rip-off. This toy is identical to the childhood favorite, the only difference is that they don’t have very good proofreaders. The slogan on the box urges consumers to “collet them all.” That doesn’t sound very fun. Photo Credit: Marhsall Astor - Food Pornographer
  • Adidas

    Aside from being one of the most famous sports brands out there, Adidas has also become one of the more elaborate acronyms. (For those who don’t know, many believe it stands for All Day I Dream About Sports.) So I wonder what ABCIDS could possibly stand for? Photo Credit: Wm Jas
    Nintendo Wii
  • Nintendo Wii

    The Wii is one of the most popular video game consoles in America, but it has a strange, cheaper competitor called the Chintendo Vii overseas. According to Gameist, “The company behind the Vii, KenSingTon, has managed to spread the Vii throughout Europe, where it's advertised in shops as an alternative to the Wii. The Vii has become so popular that it's even being sold in Japan for about $80, substantially cheaper than the retail price of the system it was based off of.”For other Nintendo rip-offs, check out this list from Gameist. Photo Credit: YouTube
  • Playstation

    Nintendo isn’t the only gaming system getting ripped off. According to Engadget, each time Playstation releases a new console, another company abroad called Polystation mimics it. Check here for a video demonstration of Polystation 3. Maybe it’s just me, but the controls look like they’re built for a 5-year-old, which is coincidentally the last age at which you might think the Polystation 3 is just as good as the original. Photo Credit: YouTube
  • Google

    As if Google didn’t have enough problems in China, it now has to contend with this knockoff. In the days following Google’s announcement that it would pull out of the country due to a cyber attack, a new site called popped up, clearly trying to capitalize on Google’s notoriety. At the same time, a site called also popped up, spoofing one of Google’s other major properties. All of this is proof that even big online businesses can get seriously knocked off. Photo Credit:
  • McDonalds

    As we mentioned earlier in the piece, there is a mall in Nanjing, China, that specializes in knockoffs. In addition to a Starbucks wannabe, there is also a fake McDonald’s called OMC McDnoalds. That’s right, the best business name they could come up with was based on a typo. Nice work. We should note that they also made a slight change to the golden arches… they added an extra one, so it looks like a mutated M. Photo Credit: Leonid Mamchenkov
    Converse Sneakers
  • Converse Sneakers

    Converse produces some very popular sneakers including its All Star series of shoes. But someone in Mexico is selling an  identical version of the shoe called Five Star. I guess the question is this: Are people more interested in looking like a sports star or a movie critic? Photo Credit: Mercedes.. Life as I picture it
  • iPods

    The iPod has become so popular that there are knockoffs all over the world. Engadget describes one fake Nano sold in the Philippines that actually claims to be better than the original, by “supporting video.” In another case, Wal Mart accidentally started selling Nano rip-offs. And then there are all of the iPhone knockoffs. Photo Credit: wheany
  • Uggs

    There are plenty of Ugg boot knockoffs, but some out there think the knockoffs might just be better than the original, since they’re certainly much cheaper. In the past, even large retailers like Target sold a rip-off version of Uggs, according to ABC. Then again, some Australians might argue that Uggs are themselves a rip-off of standard shoes sold in their country. Photo Credit: UggBoy
    Louis Vuitton
  • Louis Vuitton

    It should be no surprise that high-priced designer goods would end up being some of the most popular knockoffs. We found several sites dedicated to ripping off these bags. If you’re worried about a recent purchase, check out these tips on how to distinguish a real Louis Vuitton bag from a fake one. Photo Credit: AchimH
    Kate Spade
  • Kate Spade

    Like Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade products are also frequently replicated. Who could forget the infamous Kute Spade model? Recently, 10 counterfeiters were arrested for selling $18 million worth of bags, sunglasses and other retail goods including Kate Spade. According to one Seattle paper, “’(An undercover officer) asked the worker if the handbag on the wall was a 'Kate Spade,’ investigators said in search warrants filed in U.S. District Court. ‘The worker stated that the handbag was in fact a 'Kate Spade' and that he could sell it to her. However, he needed to sew on a 'Kate Spade' logo for her.’" This all must be particularly aggravating for Kate Spade because the company has been fighting these kind of knockoffs for several years. Photo Credit: ralph and jenny
  • Toyota

    Last year, American Public Media reported on a Chinese auto show, only to discover that many of the models on the floor were clearly ripping off big car companies. One company called Lifan manufactured their own version of the Mini Cooper, another company produced a “dead-ringer” of Toyota’s Rav4 SUV. Of course, given Toyota’s string of bad press lately, maybe they can at least look forward to fewer knockoffs in the near future. Photo Credit:
  • M&M's

    This product takes the cake when it comes to spoofing a popular item. One company apparently released an imitation of M&M’s called S&M’s. Don’t believe it? Check here for photo evidence! Props to Business Insider for discovering it. Photo Credit: FlyNutAA
    Alli Diet Pills
  • Alli Diet Pills

    While it’s bad for your wallet to be tricked into buying a pair of knockoff designer shoes, health product knockoffs are a danger to your health. In one recent example, consumers were duped into buying counterfeit Alli diet pills online, which were later shown to cause “heart palpitations, sleeplessness, anxiety, dry mouth, nausea and shakiness.” To see more health product fakers, check out MainStreet’s coverage here. Photo Credit:
    Mini Kiss
  • Mini Kiss

    While the majority of the above items were sold outside the U.S., we do seem to lead the world in producing one particular kind of knockoff: the cover band. Case in point: Mini Kiss, a Kiss tribute band composed of height-challenged rockers. On the bright side, it’s easy to distinguish this band from the real Kiss – they’re tiny and they’re terrible. Then again, I’m not sure how many people out there are still going to Kiss concerts anyway so maybe it’s a non-issue? Photo Credit: Stefan
    Tell Us Your Stories
  • Tell Us Your Stories

    What’s the worst knockoff you’ve ever bought? Did you do it knowingly or were you duped? Let us know in the comments section! Photo Credit: daoro
    So Bad They're Forbidden
  • So Bad They're Forbidden

    Knockoffs aren't the only questionable products out there. Here are some of the craziest things currently banned in America. Photo Credit: iBjorn
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