Games fakes flood beijing Beijing in a city where you can buy knock off rolex watches for $10, gucci and louis vuitton handbags for $20 and pirated dvds of the latest movies, packaged and shrink wrapped, for $3, why would anyone be surprised that the 2008 summer games would suffer from rampant piracy as well? Certainly not the official from the beijing organizing committee bocog who helped me buy a pair of kitschy glass paperweights featuring the olympic rings from a street vendor during a media tour outside the national stadium. “He wants 50 yuan(About $7)For each one,”She translated, as the man held out two paperweights.Each had an image of the stadium, known as the bird’s nest, embedded deep in the glass. Even with the rings, it was clear that these were knock offs, fakes made in a country where fakery is such a problem that one buys the real thing never knowing whether it really is real or just a better fake than the rest. In this case, what gave the counterfeits away was the unfinished description of the”Bird’s nest”As”The main stadium for the 2008 beijing. “The 2008 beijing what?Olympics?Paralympics?People’s counterfeiting congress? “Tell him i’ll take two for 25,”I said.That’s about $3.50 each. Perhaps because the bocog official was trying to shoo reporters back on to the bus for another tour of another venue, or perhaps because he realized who the translator actually worked for, the vendor quickly capitulated.Deal done, the glass weights were packed into custom fit red boxes and money changed hands. “Good deal,”The translator said. “You got a nice souvenir of your visit to the bird’s nest. ” Olympic knock offs are a fact of life for every organizing committee.Vancouver has had only a smattering of fake t shirts and the like. Bill cooper, director of commercial rights management for the vancouver organizing committee, says it has discovered only half a dozen cases since november, when vanoc hired a law firm specializing in trademark protection to secretly monitor stores. Almost all of the cases involved baseball caps and t shirts bearing an unlicensed 2010 logo. Vanoc is bracing for trouble after the beijing games, since vancouver will be next.So far counterfeiters haven’t faked the holographic tags that signal vanoc’s products as genuine.Vanoc’s most famous brand protection case, involving olympia pizza’s long term use of the olympic rings, is still unresolved after five years.Vanoc won’t discuss the case, although in the past it has offered to replace the restaurant awnings without the rings.The owner, mosi alvand, is away and could not be reached for comment. In beijing, piracy is such a problem that it is seriously eating into bocog’s anticipated $70 million in licensing revenue.Last december, officials noted that sales on bocog’s website had dropped to about one million yuan($135, 000)A month, down from a high of 1.5 million yuan in July 2007 when it opened.Officials found at least 80 commercial sites illegally selling olympic merchandise. In the years leading up to the games this august, the market has been flooded with everything from fake baseball caps to spot on imitations of the five olympic mascots. On the great wall of china, vendors have sold olympic knock offs right next to bocog’s official booth. Officials have battled the piracy with mixed success.In 2001, when beijing won the games, officials stripped fake olympic emblems from 67, 000 taxis and removed 690 billboards.But they’ve been unable to contain the plethora of olympic fakes.Last summer officials seized more than 30, 000 olympic related knock offs. According to xinhua, china’s state news agency, the state administration of industry and commerce in june, 2007 noted it had identified 1, 556 trademark violation cases for illegal use of the beijing olympics’ logos and licensed marks.Of those, 428 had been uncovered in the previous 18 months. Last week, one only had to walk outside the doors of the china world hotel where 700 delegates from various national olympic committees were meeting for their annual conference.Next door in one of the towers a beauty salon patronized by some olympic delegates prominently displayed the five rings on its wall. The crackdown has hardly made louis vuitton outlet uk a dent except in one place in beijing famous for pirated goods. Later in the day after our tour, i headed down to the silk road market.This is the place for knock offs.Six floors of it, from dolce gabbana shoes and samsonite luggage in the basement to fake ipods and clone phones on level five, right next to the fake http://www.dinick.co.uk/ rolexes and tag heuers.Even before you get in the door there are touts standing outside whispering that they have any dvd you want. In recent years trademark owners have gone after Silk road, and the market’s owners have tried to induce stall owners to switch to legitimate brands, even going so far as to create its own”Silk road”Clothing.But insistent shoppers can still find the fake guccis, burberrys and pradas tucked under counters or hidden in back rooms. One thing you won’t find there, however, is fake olympic items.That’s because the beijing organizing committee struck a deal with the owners of the market and installed a booth right on the main floor, just inside the main entrance, where it does a brisk business in the real mccoys. But step outside and try to cross the street, you’ll be set upon by vendors carrying plastic bags from which they pull fake olympic baseball caps.Sharp dealing will get you one for about $3.