Photo hunt game of Chinese Shanzhai products

| July 31st, 2011

From Baidu:clip_image001

“山寨 Shanzhai”culture is still popular in China. "Shanzhai" literally means "mountain village" or “mountain stronghold” and implies lack of official control. Shanzhai culture began when name-brand knockoffs flooding the market. However as it gains popularity its meaning expands. Shanzhai is not limited to imitation and pirated products but also parody to many mainstream culture and famous people and things look alike, like the model of the Beijing national stadium made out of sticks, Shanzhai spring gala show and so on. It becomes a new spirit and a laughing stock among the Chinese public which adds fun into their daily life but of course this still can’t be the justification for rip-off products.

Whether Shanzhai culture is the grassroots creativity or a violation of intellectual property, it’s popular among the people.

The following is a photo collection of the Shanzhai products and their original products. Compare the knockoffs with the originals, "photo hunt" the differences and get an idea of Shanzhai culture.

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Original:

Taiwan want-want hot-kid milk (right)

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Original:

Taiwan want-want hot-kid milk (left)

Left (original product)

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The right bottle is the original product.

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"Are they brothers?"

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"Super combination of Gucci and Channel?"

The two popular sportswear brand, Adidas and Nike, are popular Shanzhai targets.

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From real life to the Internet:

The developers of this searching engine are certainly quite proud of their searching engine as they claim to be " the most powerful Shanzhai searching engine ever!" in their home page.

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In China, the Shanzhai phenomena doesn’t limited to products, but celebrities too.

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The above row are the original famous celebrities: Andy Lau, Jacky Cheung and Jay Chow.

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The guy is not the only thing to fool the consumers, but also the autograph scribbled down on the right corner. The surname which is the same surname as the famous Taiwanese singer Jay Chow is the only legible character in this autograph.

57 Comments | Leave a comment | Comment feed

  1. Bo Wang says:

    Ridiculous.

  2. CMF says:

    nice selection of funny pictures. +1 for KFC shanzhai haha

  3. vic2u says:

    Nothing new.

    China is just slow to get into plastic world of fakes.

  4. Crystal Tao says:

    There must be an annual competition of Best Shanzhai with multiple nomination categories.
    I wonder what kind of prize the winner should get…

  5. expatrick1 says:

    God China never seems to surprise me with their savagery. The world would be much better with niggers being field slaves, and Chinks being house slaves.

    We need to keep encouraging Chinese discontentment so then we can weaken the CCP and finally take China Down!

    China’s greatest contribution to the world should be self-destruction. All that precious Chinese land should belong to the West – we’ll actually use it for good! Then the left over Chinese people will be used as sex slaves (women) and the men will be used as factory slaves.

    • xino says:

      @expatrick1
      you should be fucking locked up you fucking racist Nazi!

      everyone just to let you know, this fucking prick is a Nazi follower!

      • expatrick says:

        How can I be a nazi follower when I HATE nazi’s? I totally support ISRAEL and I think MUSLIMS and Chinese are the #1 enemy of the western world.

        Why are you bashing me xino? I totally support your view that China is subhuman scum. If anyone hates China the most, it’s YOU & ME.

        Are you secretly a 50-center Chinese spin doctor?

        • xino says:

          no I don’t hate China, I just hate their governments so much who are called the Devils of China.

          I’m bashing you because of the racist comments you keep putting down.
          Korean guy bashes China 24/7 but do you see him keep using the degrading word “chinks” like you do?

          if you are going to insult or bash someone, you don’t need to use racist remarks, it just shows how small your brain is compared to an average size of a human.

          And I highly doubt Muslim & China are no1 enemy of the world.
          No 1 enemy are now UK and US since Al Quaida wanna fucked them up.

          and again I don’t hate china, I just hate their Devils of China.

          “Chinese government’s new name is now called Devils of China.
          made by me.. make sure you spread it!

          let them know who the real devil is.”

          • expatrick says:

            You sound like a Chinese spindoctor 50-center

            • expatrick says:

              The CCP is made up of Chinese people, therefore all Chinese people are evil because the CCP is evil!

              I’ve been reading Chinasmack, Chinahush, and the news – the more I know about China, the more I’m convinced that China needs to be bombed!

              Xino is playing some kind of commie mind game and probably works for the CCP!

              I’ve never trusted those savage ch1nks and never will…

              • xino says:

                yea….good luck with your racism.

                At least majority would rather read Korean_Guy’s bulls rather than read your degrading racist comment.

                • German_man says:

                  Everyone, it’s obvious that Korean Guy is being paid or incentivized (per comment) by Chinahush to create controversy and debate on this website. Look at the number of posts he has on this website on almost every article. He’s got over 15 posts on almost every article, almost every day. No one who has a full time day job and/or family can contribute to this discussion like he does.

  6. xino says:

    very very annoying how these people can be ripping things off, it’s not funny but annoying!

    It’s like a question: Can’t they CREATE anything original at all?

    why must they keep making knock offs?
    I just don’t understand, it’s not the real product but do they find it comfortable to wear a rip off looking like the original?

  7. Meth says:

    Copying machine of the world

  8. Daniel says:

    I LOL at the PIGG.

    1. Shanzhai is viral
    This sort of news travels faster than advertisement of novel product where millions of investment into promotion is required. Indeed, the Shanzhai industry saves a lot of money from advertisement, and the result in lower product price or further investment in R&D of more eye catching shanzhai product.

    2. Shanzhai lacks initial investments
    In developed world, if you want to start a business, the first thing you do is to write up your plan and go to the bank. However, as cultural difference goes, many small Chinese business, like your local Chinese restaurant, are 100% self-funded. The lack of financial support forces individuals to limit their ambitions to something easy and fast reward.

    3. Shanzhai is not easy
    Shanzhai market is easy to enter, but its not easy to stand out. Since the new rules allows 80% similarity replication, people will Shanzhai you if you are good, and there goes your profit. Many successful Shanzhai tries to rebrand themselves as original producer, but it is not going to be easy.

    4. Shanzhai and local producer
    Shanzhai also serves as a cover for local original product producer. The idea that Chinese people can’t make original product is getting popular around the world. Regardless the fact that the idea is viral itself, this idea sent message to the world that may leads foreign competitors to underestimate Chinese producers. This in turn buy time for original product producers, because good brand takes time and competitions to develop. Also, with the flood of Shanzhai products, many customers are now willing to pay for a higher price for local original product. Shanzhai creates demands for original product in an unexpected ways. However, Shanzhai also gives original product producer a tougher time, just as they do to internationl firms.

  9. katwright says:

    Note to the administrator of this website:

    Can the comments have a “flag as inappropriate” button next to them?

    I know free speech and blah blah, but there is barely one comment in this thread that makes sense without cursing.

    Korean_guy needs to get a job.

    The Punk T-shirt is so hilarious, I have to get one of those.

    • 老外 says:

      I prefer to keep korean_guy, because he’s spot on about a lot of things. I don’t share his disdain for the Chinese people… instead, I see their immorality as a result of their flawed political party and justice system. One day, I hope they’ll be free of those shackles.

      If you don’t like different opinions… well, you can always become a democrat. I think korean_guy is appropriate for this site, and often wonder why he stopped posting on ChinaSMACK. I guess they censored him. :(

      Besides, he usually adds a funny twist to everything. Is it bad if I scroll down and hope to see korean_guy in every thread?

  10. Lazy Mormon says:

    @ Korea guy: I heard the Koreans claim Konfucius was Korean, their culture is more originally chinese then the chinese culture (because of some guy went to exile in Korea in the Zhou dyn), and wanted to get UNESCO to acknowledge the Sprig festival as being of Korean origin. Sounds very “shanzai” to me. PS maybe you think Steve Jobs is Korean too, right?

  11. koreans suck says:

    If Korean_Guy removed all the foul language his posts would have some merit.

    Also removing the racist comments and replacing it with sensible language instead would make his opinions more valid.

    Korean companies copy all the time.

  12. Mark says:

    “In China, the Shanzhai phenomena doesn’t limited to products, but celebrities too.”

    NOT JUST CELEBRITIES, THE LIST GOES ON LETS INCLUDE on political and religious side, SHANZHAI PANCHEN LAMAS, SHANZHAI CATHOLIC BISHOPS, and SHANZHAI DEVELOPMENT and SHANZHAI progress, and Shanzhai Nobel peace prize.

  13. Skaught says:

    That “Darlie” toothpaste brand has always been hilarious. I heard it was originally “Darkie,” totally racist, and they kept the racist-looking logo.

  14. juniorboydoe says:

    Everyone by now should know in general, China cares nothing about quality or copyrights infringements and would do ANYTHING for a buck if the price is right, you could have thier mother right on the dining room table just don’t tell anyone about it or they’d “lose face.”;-)

  15. juniorboydoe says:

    Expatrick- Let’s go further back in history and keep the Irish as English slaves so they could rape YOUR women for less then a potatoe. Western dominance my ass! if it wasn’t for jazz music(originated by Blacks) there would be nothing that was exclusively “American” in the known world, so stop finger banging your sister and come to terms with reality instead of your historically inaccurate euphoria!

    • american swine says:

      lol the internet was conceived in America dumbshit, and do I even need to mention cow boys?

  16. 老外 says:

    U.S. Patent laws severely restrict innovation.

    I actually like Shanzhai products and fully support them. Sure, many of them aren’t too high in quality, but the truth is… this is creativity unrestrained. They may be copying almost everything, but they often improve the original model or make subtle changes. They can do whatever they want, and don’t have patent laws telling them not to. I like that.

    Good examples are iPhone and iPad clones which outperform the original and have additional features that should have been included to begin with — and they’re usually a fraction of the price.

    Everything we learn is from watching others, and standing on their shoulders. Only when we have large enough pool of knowledge to choose from are we able to make truly creativity decisions. Think about it, when you were a kid, how often did you copy others until you were able to stand on your own two feet? The Chinese aren’t kids, but their current level of technology is in its infant stages.

    If nobody copied each other and tried to learn from one another, progression would be very slow. The fact is, the most successful companies in the world are those who took someone else’s work and made it better. Long live Shanzhai!

  17. Lazy Mormon says:

    I heard the Koreans claim Konfucius was Korean, their culture is more originally chinese then the chinese culture (because of some guy went to exile in Korea in the Zhou dyn), and wanted to get UNESCO to acknowledge the Sprig festival as being of Korean origin. Sounds very “shanzai” to me. PS maybe you think Steve Jobs is Korean too, right?

  18. white guy says:

    you are a dumbass
    are you saying if you invented an idea
    it is ok for someone else to take it from you and claim it for profit???

  19. white guy says:

    US Patent Law supposed protect people’s original idea

  20. xino says:

    @老外
    Actually THERE’S a big difference to plagiarism and inspiration!

    Plagiarism is basically stealing everything from the original and not changing anything.
    Inspiration is getting idea from the original and creating your own out of the original idea.

    Shanzhai are basically plagiarizing everything man, all they change are the name/title of the product. Which brands it as a knock off.

    If you are going to create a Red Bull version, must you freaking have the same red bull having a fight? Can’t you create another animal having a fight with a different colour?

    You are right about learning from others.
    But you learn and get inspired by others to create your own idea. Not completely ripping off the original idea and just changing the name.

    I have no beef with this Chain “copy n paste” feature. But my concern is that I want them to create more original products and less copy and paste!

    I mean if you create something so complex and someone replicates it, wouldn’t you be applaud? If that person can replicate anything you would obviously expect him/her to create his/her own product instead of replicating anything.

    I was actually looking at Chinawholesale last month: Chinavasion.
    So many gadgets, electronics and items from china.
    They all look so temping to buy, but majority of them are just knock offs.
    Should I buy the original iPhone from Apple that would last longer or should i buy the cheap version from ChinaVasion that would only last 1 month?

    This is why China needs to create their own original products.

  21. Carl says:

    the korean guy can’t manage one argument that doesn’t include self justifying Chinese bashing. Clearly logical, or even ideological discussions is too much for him. Give it up everybody.

    white guy is better, but clearly he thinks his arguments are inherently correct, thus the others are not even worth considering.

    people like these are stuck with their own versions of the world, bound and chained by it. the world however, moves on, with or without their hindering murmurs.

  22. vic2u says:

    Do you know what the first few English Patent was?

    It was China.

  23. vic2u says:

    In a way, yes.

    People who invent something may not have the ideas to make money from it.

    Or they may just file it and it is dead.

    Look into patents on electric motors for cars.

    Check out the patents on cancer cures.

    What about paper, gunpowder, silk and another Chinese inventions with China patents, all stolen and no money given to the Chinese govt.

  24. vic2u says:

    But the rest of the world suffers by that.

    If a cure for cancer was patented in China and only the rich Asians can get it, what would the west do?

    Die with false pride?

  25. really? says:

    Wow, the level of stupidity is staggering…

    “China patents…”

    Are you suggesting that there were “patents” on paper, gunpowder, and silk? Really?!

    “no money given to the Chinese govt.”

    Give to who? CCP? Even if there were “China patents” from 500 years ago, why would you give royalties to the government? So they can continue to fund you and your 50 cent buddies?

  26. Mark says:

    China encourages stealing and cheating from the top on down. Every six months a new story comes out about state sponsored computer espionage based in China. Google was only the most public example. The full extent of intellectual theft is only now comming out.

    The west can push back and is now ranking some types of computer hacking as acts of war.

    China has stolen or borrowed way more than the rest of the world has taken from China. If one has to go back to the 12th century that is pretty pathetic. Yes I have actually studied history of technology and in just one area such as metallurgy for example China has been at a deficit for hundreds of years.

  27. Carl says:

    the situation is more complex than that, but it’s not all so pessimistic.

    ripping off and just changing a name is bad, yes, but it’s also bad for business, their own business. These types of shanzhai are not sustainable in long term and is basically a threat to their own existence. It might rip off millions of profit from companies like apple and microsoft, but be realistic, they’re asking for it.

    the other type of shanzhai is like what lz has described to be good, those that innovate on the original product, these shanzhai are self sustaining innovations that will be the future of chinese economy. these will last.

    complainers and fearmongers should just chill, successful economic systems are not designed to be perfect, they are evolved. and evolution takes time. chillax, future is brighter yet.

  28. 老外 says:

    Because they normally can’t afford non-shanzhai electronics. Just because something is 山寨 doesn’t mean it’s low quality and will soon break (although it does happen). They’re often made in the same factories as the original.

    They don’t just add “chinese characteristics” (some do), they add things like USB and HDMI ports on products which don’t have them, which SHOULD have them. They add better electronics, better etc.. why pay for brand name goods when you can rock out with your Shanzhai out?

    Shanzhai electronics are fun! :D

  29. Meth says:

    “They’re often made in the same factories as the original.”
    -are you dumb enough to believe the fake iphones are produced in the same real iphone factories? why would you produce your own fake and counterfeit products? so the police may arrest you on sight? wow what dumb shit you are

    Shanzai electronics are not fun, fake batteries bulge and explode, you call that fun? you should have your brain checked often, you have no idea what you are talking about, go home and read a book

  30. 老外 says:

    You sound mad, bro.

  31. vic2u says:

    The Chinese government takes shit from every country, South Korea has the US army which is a bucket of shit stationed in their country.

    Both stinks to heaven.

  32. expatrick says:

    That’s so true. Asians just can’t come up with unique ideas. I mean, they always bring up Japan, but all the did was COPY american technology. Sure, they made a few “minor” improvements, but they never invented the wheel.

    In fact, I can’t think of ANY inventions from Asians in the past millenium – at least none that are worthwhile. Asians must have a smaller “creatity” part of their brain.

    All the greatest inventions were created by White Western men.

  33. 老外 says:

    Ah, that doesn’t surprise me. I’m guessing she got a call from the local government. “So, this bangzi… you must banzi him. He is interfering with our… harmonious society.”

    korean_guy… I feel like I know you… and we’ve been friends for years. Are you by any chance close to 7 feet in height? Closer to 7 than 6?

  34. vic2u says:

    “All the greatest inventions were created by White Western men.”

    But without your black pres and many black bosses you whiteys are all lost.

    At least China don’t need blacks to control the Chinese people, they are free of the black masters that make slaves out of whiteys.

  35. Lazy Mormon says:

    The Koreans piss also the Taiwanese off with their sh…

    Maybe you should give us your opinion in your Nort Korean brethrens man.

  36. xino says:

    I don’t know what CCP means.

    but just call the Chinese’s government Devils of China.
    That is their real new name from now on!

  37. WTF Guy says:

    does anything happen in Korea? all i hear about is samsung phones, daewooo sometimes, and Kim Jong Il who cant fight hard enough to get away from you.

    but i gotta say, it there was an award for Korean Who Hates China The Most And Wastes His Whole Day Commenting On It, i would vote for you :-)

  38. Mark says:

    This whole thing flies in the face of free trade. Innovate as much as you want but if you borrow trademarks and technology from others pay the toll or you are just a fuckin thief.

  39. Mark says:

    Oh i get it, cause Korea has so called foreign contamination…please build your great wall again and disengage.

  40. Mark says:

    Why do you not get of Kg’s back and help your boy Mit Romney, you can get all the poly Mormon wives to work for his lost cause.

  41. Mark says:

    European civilization and technology was like a steam roller over the rest of the world. China decided long ago that its culture was superior and went to sleep for hundreds of years as Europe evolved and studied and borrowed from other cultures. Even your pathetic Marxism was based on scientific materialism and came from the West through Marx and Engels.
    Obama has proud African ancestors but he is a product of the finest Western institutions.

  42. Lazy Mormon says:

    the Americans had the Cold War planned 10 years before the Korean War…

  43. Carl says:

    Had the arabs trademarked and copyrighted everything they’ve made in the middleages and the Europeans agreed to pay them for it… Europe would still be in the dark ages. So no, copyrights and trademark system works because it’s beneficial to the rich, and will stop working when the rest of the world discovers what a total scam it was.

    So we come to two conclusion, either all Europeans, and descendents are petty thieves, and still are benefiting from the looted goodies; or that intellectual properties is not universal, and doesn’t have to be, because the world had evolved in its absence and will evolve beyond it for the better.

  44. Mark says:

    my dear neighbor Carl in Canada?

    The key to my whole comment was “free trade” based on international agreements to respect intellectual property and trademarks in the here and know.

    Yes if there had been free trade agreements in the middle ages and patents Arabia would hold the rights to the water pipe etc, but you forget licensing allows for others to enjoy and use technology…the key is not inventing and preventing but inventing and renting….

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