Prof. Rido Busse, initiator of the "Plagiarius" & Prof. Dr. Peter Zec, initiator and CEO of red dot
Prof. Dr. Peter Zec, laudator of the "Plagiarius 2012"
Lightweight wheel rim "AC Schnitzer Typ V“ (left), imitation (right)
"Dyson Air Multiplier" (left), imitation (right)

"Plagiarius" - awarded for the 36th time

It publicly denounces "design robbery" and the lack of ideas: the "Plagiarius". More and more ruthless, product pirates copy ideas of successful companies that invest in design quality, and present them as their own achievements. Since 1977, particularly shameless imitators are awarded the "Plagiarius". The trophy is a black dwarf with a golden nose: A very fitting symbol for the high profits that are made at the expense of innovative design – often accompanied by untruthful statements.

The "Plagiarius" contest was announced for the 36th time already. Year by year, companies, designers and inventors are invited to submit their original products as well as supposed imitations and thus propose the plagiarist for the negative price. On 10 February, the ceremony of the "Plagiarius 2012" took place at the trade fair "Ambiente" in Frankfurt. A mattress was copied, just like a kitchen cutting device of the swizzzPROZZZ AG or the "red dot: best of the best" awarded desk fan of Dyson. In total, ten companies were reviled by being awarded the "Plagiarius".

The company rimlux from Essen, Germany, was punished with the rightful first prize. The original lightweight forged wheels are a product of the AC Schnitzer automobile technology. Nevertheless, Asia is still the focus of piracy: The second place was given to the Ninghai Xidian Jianfeng Plastics Mould Factory from China that plagiarised the salad cutter "Salad Chef" of the company Genius. Everything is stolen – this could also be the motto of the Chinese company Shenzhen Send-Tech that didn’t develop its own ideas for a fogger for mosquito and pest control, but used the "Swingfog SN 50" from Swingtec as a template for its own version.

In recent years, important personalities from business and politics, gave a laudatory speech for the “Plagiarius”. This year, Prof. Dr. Peter Zec announced the "winners" of the competition and made clear that the major increase of product piracy provides huge challenges for all industries and the development of design. "In my eyes, the plagiarists only get lenient sentences, because they do not commit a 'classic' crime. A special issue about design robbery is the fact that you are actually unaware that you have been robbed. The thief can work in peace and quiet. However, profit has already been made and severe damage has been caused by them", said the initiator and CEO of red dot.

» Article about the "Plagiarius" on SPIEGEL ONLINE (German content)