Social media and IP Rights infringement 2023-01-31

In an era of technology, social media platforms provide also an important shopping window for the general public, and as technical and social advancements offer new opportunities for consumers and brands, the same is true for counterfeiters and trademark violators.
The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) decided to conduct a study to better understand the volume and frequency of IPR infringement on social media.
The EUIPO through the European Observatory on Infringement of Intellectual Property Rights (Observatory) has published a report entitled “Monitoring and analysing social media in relation to IP infringement", published in the EUIPO official website on 07 May 2021.
The study analyses of data extracted from the most used social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Reddit) in six countries Europeans (Germany, France, Poland, Sweden, Spain and Italy), considered 3.9 million public conversations.
The analysis found that 11% conversations about products were connected to possible counterfeits, and 35% could relate to piracy, which peaked in user discussions during the months at the start of the pandemic in spring 2020.

The analysis demonstrate that social platforms are indeed used as tools for recurring infringements for both physical products and digital content, despite a strong difficulty in identifying violations with certainty.
The report highlighted the difficulty in identifying business models for IP rights infringements, due to the different approaches used to promote and disseminate them.



Tamara Besednjak Valič

Faculty Of Information Studies In Novo Mesto



Virág Szuák

Pannon Business Network Association