Swedish Diplomat Fired for His Illegal Pantyhose Smuggling Business

September 25, 2013 under News

Swedish diplomat accused of smuggling pantyhose from Belarus into Russia

Case from 2009:  Moscow embassy fired a Swedish diplomat, Andres Martin Fors, who became nicknamed as a “pantyhose” diplomat who used his untouchable status to smuggle hosiery from a factory in Belarus to Russia without paying duties or taxes and giving it to local stores to sell on consignment basis.

Usually foreign diplomats are accused of espionage, but this one had a refreshingly new entrepreneurial case.  Still, because of diplomatic immunity the diplomat could not be arrested by Moscow police, but he was dismissed from his position in Moscow.  This is against Vienna convention for a diplomat to engage in such activity.

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Elka accused of plagiarism of Hot Hot Heat song “Shame On You”

August 30, 2013 under Famous

elka singer in a pink dressRecently I’ve been visiting Victoria, BC for the weekend.  It’s a city on Vancouver island, full of local artists.  Maybe I would not even mention this fact, but coincidentally I was just reading about how their local band called Hot Hot Heat got one of their songs copied by a famous European singer.

Russian/Ukrainian singer, who goes under the name of Elka (pronounced Yolka), for the past two years gained enormous popularity in former USSR for her song called “Provence”.  But she is now accused of plagiarism, the chorus of her song is almost identical to the tune from the Hot Hot Heat song called “Shame On You”.

You can listen to the music in the video below where they alternate between the Canadian original and the song that is thought to be the knock off.  Obviously, Elka completely denies such accusations and says that the song came to her composer from outer space by SMS.

elka singer in white socksCopyright violations make many of us upset, but think of it this way, you’d probably would never find out about this Hot Hot Heat song if a popular singer wouldn’t snatch it, as they say.

But why is it that the same tune performed by Elka got so much attention and the original didn’t?  Perhaps because of her beautiful video clip, uplifting lyrics (her song is about her exciting anticipation of her trip tomorrow to the suburbs of Paris), and of course her large promotional budget.

Would you say that it is possible that Elka’s composer didn’t actually copy that song and simply came up with such a similar tune?  I’d love to hear your opinion.

 

elka under water

elka singer in Kazan in pantyhose

elka singer in Kazan

 

Lithuania: employee gets fired for tying black pantyhose on a flag

August 5, 2013 under News

CORRECTION: Thank you to readers of this blog who pointed out a mistake that before the country was wrongfully stated as Latvia and the date of the mourning day was wrongfully written as well.  Correct country – Lithuania.  Correct date – June 14th.  It is something that is remembered in Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. 

pantyhose over latvian flagA flag is a symbol of a country and if mistreated, it maybe taken as an offence.  Usually it happens because people don’t know any better.

Let’s say that there are cases of ships entering a foreign port with the flag upside down.  Or an embarrassing case of outsourcing gone wrong, such as a batch of Israeli flags that were made in China arrived with the Star of David shifted by a 30 degree rotation, which for whatever reason was not rejected and filled the air on the 2008 Independence Day in Tel-Aviv.

Alright, we can perhaps assign such cases to a staff member who didn’t check the drawing or a young sailor who has has no idea which colour of the French striped flag should face the top.  We all make such mistakes.

But what would you say about a man who purposely ties a pair of black pantyhose over the Lithuanian flag instead of a black ribbon?  It is a common custom in the Baltic countries to tie a ribbon on the flag on the days of mourning.

So in this case on June 14, 2013 – Anniversary of Deportation (mourning in memory of victims of communist genocide), a worker of a store called Maxima tied a pair of black pantyhose over their flag.

Let’s just say that not only the worker got fired for such a deed, for which no explanation was released, the owners of the store are hoping to pursue this matter in court as a criminal offence.

Even though I believe that any flag should be treated with respect, I should point out that such a deed made it to a newspaper, thus informing the whole world about this Lithuanian day of mourning.  I would probably have no idea about such tragedy suffered in the Baltic countries in 1941 if I wouldn’t stumble upon that note online.

For sure the worker didn’t raise the flag properly, but he (or she) for sure raised some awareness as a result.

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Victoria Secret and their Knock Off Lawsuit

November 12, 2012 under News

Recently Victoria Secret was sued by their former hosiery supplier – Zephyrs.  They stopped buying from them, but continued to use photos of their products on packaging of other hosiery that was of lower quality.

The only thing that changed was that the label now read “made in Canada” rather than “made in Italy”.  Zephyrs feels that Victoria Secret presented a Canadian knock off as if it was that high quality Italian brand that they originally worked with.

This lawsuit was processed in Columbus, Ohio to claim false advertising and fraud.  Maybe it’s a little off topic, but for me lately a lot of things were revolving around that city!  I even ended up there in August – exactly the month when they had that case submitted.

Styles that are being recalled are Lace Top Fish Net Stockings, Fish Net Thigh-Highs With Backseam, and Signature Stripe Thigh-High With Bows.  If you ever tried those, I’d love to hear from you!

Below you can see some images that show you the differences in the welt of the stockings.