Arts firm begins lobbying campaign to improve and enforce labeling laws

In an effort to curb unfair competition caused by knock-offs and poorly labeled imported products, The Rosen Group, a Baltimore-based arts marketing and publishing firm, has begun a lobbying campaign to strengthen and enforce existing indelible labeling laws.

In addition to improving the existing law, the campaign aims to educate artists about the benefits of and ways to protect their work through steps such as securing copyrights of designs and hiring lawyers. The Rosen Group can provide artists with contacts at Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, links to web sites to register copyrights, and information about intellectual property laws.

The indelible labeling campaign is in the early stages of development but numerous organizations and congressional members have shown an interest in working with The Rosen Group on these issues, the organization says. E-mail legal@rosengrp.com for more information, questions or comments.

Whether made in a foreign country or here in the U.S., knock-offs have a negative effect on the businesses of American artists and retailers, the organization says. Consumers buy the cheaper knock-off rather than spend money on the original in a gallery or craft store. This cycle causes retailers to lose valuable business and artists to lose their foothold in the wholesale market. Indelible labeling benefits not only American artists by ensuring fair competition, but also protects consumers and retailers from deceptive marketing.

The Rosen Group produces the biannual Buyers Market of American Craft, founded of the Arts Business Institute, and publishes two magazines: NICHE, the trade publication for fine American craft retailers, and AmericanStyle, a consumer lifestyle magazine for collectors of American art.