02-01-2018, 07:18 PM
#1
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Well...I am not flattered, I just found out that someone in France is copying my Asylum Evolution Razor and, they are not even using their own money to do so (it is a crowd funding project).

About a year and a half ago, I designed an homage to the Darwin Standard Safety Razor from the 1940's. These razors have not been made in over 70 years and, they became very sought after. In fact, I had to pay $1000 for my Darwin on Ebay and, it took me 6 months to secure one. Once I found the vintage razor, I had it reverse engineered so that it could be machined on a 5-axis machine. We then offered it in two different metals, several different finishes, choice of aggressive or mild base plates and a long and short-handled version. Well more than a year after I first offered them for sale, this guy in France is doing the exact same thing. I am more than a little irritated.

https://rasoirsdarwin.com/

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 02-01-2018, 07:41 PM
#2
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
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As you should be.

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 02-01-2018, 08:44 PM
#3
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From looking at the site it looks like they just offer software (soap and Aftershave) with the name Darwin. May be wrong but did not see any hardware

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 02-01-2018, 08:46 PM
#4
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(02-01-2018, 08:44 PM)SteelTown Wrote: From looking at the site it looks like they just offer software (soap and Aftershave) with the name Darwin. May be wrong but did not see any hardware

If you look at the guy's Facebook page they are announcing their intention to start a crowdfunding campaign there.

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 02-01-2018, 09:01 PM
#5
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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 02-01-2018, 09:14 PM
#6
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Sorry. Not big on Facebook. Just looked at their shop and saw nothing for sale. No harm intended

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 02-01-2018, 09:16 PM
#7
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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(02-01-2018, 09:14 PM)SteelTown Wrote: Sorry. Not big on Facebook.  Just looked at their shop and saw nothing for sale. No harm intended

No worries...I tried copying the instagram link but Instagram is wonky. It seems that you have to be on their platform to see it.

Their razor is being crowd funded and is not yet available for purchase.

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 02-02-2018, 03:59 AM
#8
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Phil, sorry to hear that.  Expect no one here will be buying it if that's any solace.

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 02-02-2018, 05:04 AM
#9
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Phil there is always someone out there trying to take advantage of someone else’s hard work, sorry to hear someone is trying to profit from your work, I wonder if any legal action could be taken ?

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 02-02-2018, 08:43 AM
#10
  • blzrfn
  • Butterscotch Bandit
  • Vancouver USA
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Capitalism at it's finest.  The patent on the Darwin safety razor expired a long time ago (if there ever was one), which allowed the Asylum to be made.  I'm not sure the wet shaving market is large enough to fund the development and patent costs of designing a new safety razor, but there's clones of just about every razor out there with the guys in Arizona and Canada really taking advantage.  I'm really surprised nobody has cloned the BBS-1 and Wolfmann razors yet considering their demand and popularity.  Phil, just keep making a quality product and compete until it isn't profitable.  Then go back to the drawing board and come out with something else brilliant.

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 02-02-2018, 09:15 AM
#11
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Based on a rebuttal I read from the owner of the other company, I guess they actually own the Darwin brand. I guess that entitles them to produce the razors. Is this not true?

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 02-02-2018, 09:27 AM
#12
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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(02-02-2018, 09:15 AM)shevek Wrote: Based on a rebuttal I read from the owner of the other company, I guess they actually own the Darwin brand. I guess that entitles them to produce the razors. Is this not true?

They are on solid legal ground but not on solid ethical ground. It is a start up that may have registered the Darwin name. I am fairly certain they were not even in existence when the Evolution was launched.

They have been a member here since January 2014 and they were able to follow the Evolution from before there were even prototypes.

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 02-02-2018, 09:28 AM
#13
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I see the rebuttal was removed, I am curious why as I believe it was posted in good taste and well written and it gives us all answers from both sides. I know we don’t want to get into a pushing grudge match on who’s right or wrong but I think it’s only fair we hear both sides.

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 02-02-2018, 09:34 AM
#14
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While I am not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV, he might be legally in the clear to make a copy of the original Darwin (original trademarks and patents have most likely expired - however an argument can be made that if the razor he ends up making can be mistaken for Phil's product he's in  a legally grey area at best). Morally speaking on the other hand... YMMV, but considering that Phil launched the Evolution more than a year ago I know what I think about the whole thing.

Look at it this way; you can go to Phil's shop today and pick up an Evolution (stainless or brass, long or short, polished or not), you can try to find an original Darwin (good luck with that), OR you can throw some money at a crowd-funding campaign and cross your fingers (most of the crowd founded razors I recall have ended up shipping late at best). If you want a Darwin style razor to shave with, your best bet is the first option.

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 02-02-2018, 12:52 PM
#15
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(02-02-2018, 09:28 AM)Panther308 Wrote: I see the rebuttal was removed, I am curious why as I believe it was posted in good taste and well written and it gives us all answers from both sides. I know we don’t want to get into a pushing grudge match on who’s right or wrong but I think it’s only fair we hear both sides.



lol thanks for saying the rebuttal was here... i'm recovering from surgery and thought i read it and then it was gone...  wasn't sure if i actually read it because of the meds.. lol

just curious on why it was deleted as well... i thought it was in good taste as well...

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 02-02-2018, 01:32 PM
#16
  • bullgoose
  • The Enabler
  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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(02-02-2018, 12:52 PM)tupacboy Wrote:
(02-02-2018, 09:28 AM)Panther308 Wrote: I see the rebuttal was removed, I am curious why as I believe it was posted in good taste and well written and it gives us all answers from both sides. I know we don’t want to get into a pushing grudge match on who’s right or wrong but I think it’s only fair we hear both sides.



lol thanks for saying the rebuttal was here... i'm recovering from surgery and thought i read it and then it was gone...  wasn't sure if i actually read it because of the meds.. lol

just curious on why it was deleted as well... i thought it was in good taste as well...

Two reasons. 1. There is a rule against discussing crowd funded projects (e.g. kick starter) until the product is available (no vaporware) and 2. He is not a TSN vendor and thus cannot advertise his business on the site.

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 02-02-2018, 03:00 PM
#17
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I don't know why anyone would plunk down money months or years in advance on a crowdfunded project for a product that is already produced at an extremely high level of quality by another manufacturer and which is currently available.  The crowdfunded item may never be brought to market or may be of poor quality when it shows.  If you wanted a modern Darwin, why wouldn't you just buy an Asylum Evolution and have it in hand in two or three days?

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 02-02-2018, 03:52 PM
#18
  • Mel S Meles
  • On the edge, ouch
  • 44.4899° south of the North Pole
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(02-02-2018, 09:15 AM)shevek Wrote: Based on a rebuttal I read from the owner of the other company, I guess they actually own the Darwin brand. I guess that entitles them to produce the razors. Is this not true?

Short answer:  no.  
Medium longish answer:  depends upon what is meant by “own the brand”; the answer to that depends upon national laws, with different results according to, among many other issues,  whether the nation’s legal system is based upon the common law or the Napoleonic Code.

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 02-02-2018, 04:11 PM
#19
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(02-02-2018, 03:00 PM)BrickHud Wrote: I don't know why anyone would plunk down money months or years in advance on a crowdfunded project for a product that is already produced at an extremely high level of quality by another manufacturer and which is currently available.  The crowdfunded item may never be brought to market or may be of poor quality when it shows.  If you wanted a modern Darwin, why wouldn't you just buy an Asylum Evolution and have it in hand in two or three days?

I agree with this. It’s an excellent homage to the original. I’ve heard nothing but good things about its craftsmanship.

I don’t understand the ethical point of view, since it’s not an original design and any patent would have expired. For the same reason, I don’t see the problem with using the M7, Rover, and 4125 designs for the Asylum brushes. If there is a distinction or difference here, please correct me. Maybe I just don’t get it.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 02-03-2018, 12:12 AM
#20
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(02-02-2018, 04:11 PM)Watson15 Wrote: I don’t understand the ethical point of view, since it’s not an original design and any patent would have expired. For the same reason, I don’t see the problem with using the M7, Rover, and 4125 designs for the Asylum brushes. If there is a distinction or difference here, please correct me. Maybe I just don’t get it.

Morals and ethics are even more YMMV than razors and brushes... Angel

Copying an old design that isn't in production is one thing, copying an old design that is currently being manufactured by someone else is a somewhat different thing. Whether you consider it morally right or wrong comes down to personal ethics.

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