I rarely visit forums anymore. I'm not really sure why, to be honest. Aside from the fact that the opinions I maintain are rarely shared, they do not seem to be even remotely as active as they once were. However, that means I am on Facebook and other forms of social media to see what is going on in the aftermarket automotive community more often than I care to be. It is a sad state of affairs, to put it lightly. Pro-authenticity supporters are in the minority, to say the least. The "good enough" mentality seems to have become the acceptable standard. The "have to have it now and do not want to save for it" internet acclaim-seeking mindset seems to have become the pervasive disposition. There is a lack of shame in sporting replica and knock-off parts. In fact, it is as though people justify their corner-cutting by falsely equating it to being a wise or economical consumer. In turn, these corner-cutters would have it believed that the enthusiast who chooses to support originality and buy the legitimate parts from the real talent of the industry is just a "sucker" who is being duped. This modifying mentality is backwards.
The witty and deep-cutting quote above is from the owner of a fly-by-night replica company. This self-important braggart and purveyor of stolen designs has a following. There are people buying parts for their projects these days who do not even know they are buying unoriginal designs from companies such as the one this guy, who touts himself as the "Poly God," manages. I chimed in on a thread in support of someone advocating support of original designs and this gentleman must have checked my personal profile to see the JDMphasis website. This astute "entrepreneur" is correct - this website (and the blog format) has not been updated in years. The reason for this is quite simply that I do not know anything about website design, coding, programming, or whatever it is called. And, frankly, this website still serves the purpose for which it was created.
This blog's web address is not important. It is the reality that replica and knock-off companies are everywhere. They are the vultures of the aftermarket industry, circling social media searching for their next meal. That next meal often comes in the form of an ill-informed consumer who knows no better. It also comes in the form of consumers who DO know better, but still choose to support those parasitic replica companies and then, since people are not often inclined to denounce their own purchase, post the over-the-top positive reviews all over the social media platforms that are already inundated with replica love and support. The rare nay-sayer and advocate of authenticity is quickly dubbed an "elitist" or "hater," but the reality is that those are the enthusiasts who are fighting the good fight. The excuses and justifications for buying replica parts are abundant. The sad truth is that people are not willing to save for a little bit longer. Pride in one's project is outweighed by a desire to have it done now. It is a shame that the aftermarket community is less about quality today and more about quantity. LIKEs, shares, and compliments from strangers who may know nothing about the platform have become more important than a complete, judicious, and well-built project vehicle.
As I have said from the day I created this sorry, outdated blog, I cannot tell people how to spend their money, but I can encourage support for the true pioneers and innovators of the Japanese tuning industry. Reward the risk-takers. Reward ingenuity. Reward originality. Refuse to reward the undermining, pilfering, and thievery of replica companies. Take pride in your ride. The end result will be worth it.
(Oh, and if you are looking for a group on Facebook where support of originality and authenticity is encouraged, send a join request to the Authentic Parts Syndicate.)
Be Real. Buy Real.
JDMphasis… Innovation over Imitation