Startup enlists 'the crowd' to expose knock-offs

Sep 10, 2012
A woman looks at a smartphone in Beijing in May 2012. Tech startup BrandBounty on Monday sought to enlist smartphone users around the world in a "crowd-sourced" battle against knock-off goods and pirated digital content.

Tech startup BrandBounty on Monday sought to enlist smartphone users around the world in a "crowd-sourced" battle against knock-off goods and pirated digital content.

The creators of BrandBounty, which launched earlier this year, were at a Disrupt gathering of technology startups in San Francisco to show off an application they designed to transform "consumers into brand vigilantes."

The application makes a game of sorts out of exposing .

People can score points and win prizes by using smartphones to submit pictures, descriptions or other "tips" about apparent knock-offs or piracy.

Brands sponsor contests or reward programs and get any resulting real-time intelligence about possible abuses in the market.

"The age-old problem with brand enforcement is a lack of eyes in the ground," said Jonathan Gonen, co-founder of the company born out of a Los Angeles-based accelerator called StartupMinds.

"With BrandBounty, we now have a simple, fun, and effective solution that turns smart consumers into brand watchdogs."

Counterfeiting and piracy cost the US economy an estimated $1.2 to $1.7 trillion dollars last year, according to Gonen.

A version of BrandBounty was available at the App Store for Apple gadgets with applications tailored for Android smartphones to be available in the coming months.

Explore further: App teaches kindergartners basic computer coding

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Yahoo! helps find smartphone 'apps'

Jun 16, 2011

Yahoo! has begun helping people navigate the sea of applications available for Apple iPhones or mobile gadgets powered by Google-backed Android software.

Recommended for you

Microsoft skips Windows 9 to emphasize advances

Sep 30, 2014

The next version of Microsoft's flagship operating system will be called Windows 10, as the company skips version 9 to emphasize advances it is making toward a world centered on mobile devices and Internet ...

User comments : 0