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Most artists lack vital information— Lilly Alfonso

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Fashion designer Lilly Alfonso has said many of the country’s artists lack vital information and that there was need for awareness campaigns.

Alfonso singled out information on intellectual property and copyright which artists have limited knowledge on.

“There is limited, to no, access to intellectual property (IP) rights information. Artists lack knowledge on IP from responsible IP offices and so most IP issues are easily neglected,” Alfonso said.

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The decorated designer, who has exhibited her designs on both local and international platforms, has since started sharing information on IP and copyright through her Facebook page.

The Lilongwe-based designer said that they, at Lilly Alfonso designs, believe in leading by example, hence taking the initiative to help those that need information in understanding talents, branding and dangers of copying designs.

“As Lilly Alfonso, I have taken the social responsibility to educate young designers to be original in their creations to avoid copyright infringement implications,” she said.

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Alfonso said she has been working with African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (Aripo)—which has offices locally—and, with the Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma) as well as Registrar General’s office in educating people, especially designers, about copyright related issues.

“Copying of designs has numerous negative impacts on the country’s fashion sector and the economy and so we need to refrain from it and make sure we bring out our original works,” Alfonso said.

She said in May this year she also held a Tri Fashion show with the aim of sharing information on fashion and copyright.

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