Copyright Alliance Offers Holiday Shopping Tips for Copyright-Protected Gifts

November 19, 2018

The Alliance looks to promote consumer awareness and safety during the 2018 holiday season

Washington, D.C. In an effort to protect gifters and giftees, and to promote consumer awareness this holiday season, the Copyright Alliance is offering tips to consumers on buying legitimate products for their holiday presents.

According to Copyright Alliance CEO Keith Kupferschmid, “During the past three holiday seasons, we teamed up with our members to educate consumers on ways to identify and avoid buying pirated and counterfeit products as gifts. These initiatives were very effective and we received a lot of positive feedback. So we are again sharing helpful info for the 2018 shopping season, including the warning signs of pirated goods that masquerade as legitimate products.”

There is also a definitive link between content theft sites and malware, as outlined by the Digital Citizens Alliance Digital Bait report. By obtaining content legally over the holidays, consumers not only reward creators and incentivize further creation, they also avoid malware that can result in criminals gaining access to consumer financial information and identity theft.

Kupferschmid added, “As more consumers have gone online to purchase goods in recent years, sites selling illegitimate merchandise have become savvy at portraying themselves as legitimate online retailers selling genuine products. We are looking to help the ‘buyer beware’ during this year’s gift-giving season, as well as to provide consumer safety tips for the long term.”

Some tips to follow to ensure that consumers purchase only legitimate products:

  • Don’t buy unused goods at flea markets. Chances are they are selling illegal copies and knock-offs.
  • If a product price seems too good to be true, it probably is. Be careful about extreme bargains on software, movies, music, etc.
  • Only purchase products from secure online sites, to protect your credit card information and identity.
  • When reviewing product packaging, simple things like spelling errors, blurry text and images or poor print quality can help you identify illegal products.
  • The best way to avoid inadvertently buying an illegal product is to purchase it from a reputable brick-and-mortar or online retail store, or directly from the copyright owner’s website.
  • When in doubt about whether a product is legitimate, do further research before making your purchase.

The Copyright Alliance recommends the following links to help ensure shopping safely:

Be Cyber Safe and Counterfeit Free (Digital Citizens Alliance)

How to Avoid Dangerous Counterfeits on Amazon this Holiday Season (Forbes)

Tips for Avoiding Pirated and Counterfeit Goods this Season (Copyright Alliance)

Tips to Protect Yourself from Buying Counterfeit Goods Online (Fox 5)

Buyers Beware! Tips to Combat Counterfeit Products this Holiday Season (Harman/Samsung)

As Holiday Season Kicks Off, Experts Warn of Counterfeit Risk (WWD)

How to Avoid the 7 Most Common Holiday Scams (The Smarter Consumer)

How to Detect Video Game Piracy (Nintendo)

How to Tell: Learn How to Tell if Your MS Software and Hardware are Genuine (Microsoft)

Get it Right From a Genuine Site (Creative Content UK Partnership)

Avoiding Counterfeit Music Sites and CDs (RIAA)

Avoiding Scams this Holiday Season (ICE)

Kodi Boxes: Experts Urge Users to Unplug Their Devices Immediately (Independent)

Global Brand Council Works to Combat Counterfeit Goods (GIPC)

Find Legitimate Sources for Movies, TV and More (



The Copyright Alliance is a non-profit, non-partisan public interest and educational organization representing the copyright interests of over 1.8 million individual creators and over 13,000 organizations in the United States, across the spectrum of copyright disciplines. The Copyright Alliance is dedicated to advocating policies that promote and preserve the value of copyright, and to protecting the rights of creators and innovators. For more information, please visit