The Effects of Design Piracy on Consumer Perception: When Large Fashion Corporates Pirate Small Independent Fashion Designers
Fashion design piracy has the potential to highly impact small designers through a combination of limited legal fashion rights and the proliferation of online exposure to their work. The purpose of this study was to examine effects of a revelation of fashion design piracy cases on consumers' perceptions about small designers and their designs, particularly when these designers were purportedly pirated by large fashion corporations. Through an online experiment of 260 college students, we examined perceptions of two designers and their designs narrowed from a pretest of purported piracy cases. Designers' value and uniqueness of designs, as well as brand attitude and brand creativity upon participants' revelation of their piracy by a corporation were examined through two-way multivariate analysis of variance. Findings revealed a significant interaction effect for revelation condition and piracy case designer. Further, significant main effects were found for perceived designer brand creativity and perceived value of designs.