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Recycling Canon ink cartridges is illegal




From the Asahi Shimbun:

Canon Inc. won a key victory Tuesday when the Intellectual Property High Court ruled that recycled Canon printer ink cartridges violated the company’s patent rights.

Tokyo-based Recycle Assist Co., which lost the court action, was ordered to stop importing and selling cheap recycled Canon-brand cartridges and dispose of its inventory.

I blogged about ink refilling is a crime four months ago here. That time, it was for Lexmark.

I won’t be surprised if Canon or Epson will be doing the same suing here in the Philippines.

So, what will those “Ink for Less” franchisees do now?



Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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13 Responses

  1. i dont know. i believe Nene has won a franchise of IFL. didn’t she?

  2. Eugene says:

    Recycling printer cartridges (for selling) and refilling printer cartridges are two different things.

  3. Fleeb says:

    Ink for Less, Inkman, and the like…

    I think they use their own cartridges?

  4. haiki says:

    Think about a HP ink cartridge that has a warranty. Bad ink cartridge, color bad, light ink which appears watery, what-ever, they give you another one. That’s the way a warranty works. You buy a recycled ink cartridge, with no HP warranty. It may work momentarily, but then you get these same messages, remove cartridge. Why should my printer shut down after purchasing a recycled ink cartridge? But then if you buy an HP ink cartridge, your printer is up and running again. Or until that time HP thinks you have printed long enough, even if you have plenty of ink. HP forces you, according to HP predetermined usage, in order for your printer to work, to buy their ink cartridges, or HP will shut your printer down.

    Don’t focus on the ink cartridge, focus on the fact HP, and other printer manufacturers, stop your printer from working, because of some silly game they are playing of cheating customers before the ink runs out, or wrong ink standards, or what-ever. I say, go ahead send these stupid messages, but don’t stop my printer from working. This is anti-competitive, and in violation of anti-trust laws.

    To be perfectly clear

    Hewlett Packard recycles their ink cartridges by promoting that HP cartridges be returned for recycling, using a self addressed, stamped envelope. Allowing HP, through their “refurbishing and reselling” effort to conserve resources, using the various recycling facilities of manufacturers around the world contracted by HP. Thus, the mere fact that there also are other recyclers available to refurbish, and recycle ink cartridges, but except for lower cost, and the free choice of the consumer, HP has restricted the consumer the full use, and the operation of HP printers.

    Smith and Roberson’s Business Law, ninth edition. West Publishing. Chapter 43; ANTITRUST.
    “Characterizing a type of restraint as per se illegal therefore has a significant effect on the prosecution of an antitrust suit. In such a case, the plaintiff need only show that the type of restraint occurred, she does not need to prove that the restraint limited competition…..Tying arrangements. A tying arrangement occurs when the seller of a product, service, or intangible (the “tying” product) conditions its sale on the buyers purchasing a second product, service, or intangible (the “tied” product) from the seller….Because tying arrangements limit buyers’ freedom of choice and may exclude competitors, the law closely scrutinizes such agreements.”

    Hewlett Packard has, unbeknownst to customers who purchased HP printers (tying product), tied as a condition, the purchase of new HP ink cartridges (tied product), or HP recycled ink cartridges, through the use illegal anti-competitive consumer practices.

    After all, what are we talking about, it’s a ball point pen refill morphed into a printer ink cartridge. It’s a recycled auto part! Again, I say Hewlett Packard, and the rest of the conspirators, play your silly games by cheating consumers on ink cost, and supplies. I say go ahead! But don’t stop me from the use of my printer.

  5. bienb says:

    i’ve been using my #15 black hp cartridge for years. Bought a liter of ink and still happily printing with it. The colored #17 cartridge sucks though. The ink dries/clogs up even when i hardly print in color.

    Now I use my canon iP1200 to print in color and may even be able to retire my hp. canon uses ink so economically, it’s insane! oh, i refilled it’s color and black cartridge so many times, i lost count, and my 250ml bottles are still 3/4 full! printed several reams already, and still going…

    so i say, i bought the printer, it’s mine now, and i can do with it as i please. if i chose to refill, that’s my prerogative. it’s my risk, and since it works well, it’s my gain!

    I bought this printer to print with, not just to be able to buy their ink cartridges! if i can figure out a way to make this printer print using ink made from cheaper household items, they can’t stop me from doing that too.

    refilling should only be illegal if they are causing harm to the consumers. fortunately, refilling is beneficial to the consumers, not to mention the environment.

    if refilling do become illegal, then some politicians surely got some “under the table” from the manufacturers.

    it should be illegal to sell hp color printers because one could only refill their cartridges 2 or 3 times at most, then it dies. most of the time, you can’t even use it fully. damn thing clogs up very easily. at 2200 pesos per color cartridge, that’s not helpful to a struggling pinoy family.

    for those who used Epson printers, need i mention how many times you want to throw it away?

    the manufacturers are simply refusing to bend to the consumers’ needs. they want to bend the law so the consumers have to keep on forking over their hard earned money just so their kids can print out their assignments.

    what they should be doing is to develop better refillable cartridges, then sell their own refilling kits!

    make refilling illegal? get outta town… better yet, get outta the country!

  6. bienb says:

    stumbled onto this again. heheh. I just thought of something…

    If you buy a car with a tank full of gas, should you be forced by law to refill your car with the same brand of gasoline?

    I think the Canon victory in tokyo has some detail left out. It can’t be just about refurbished cartridges. They were probably selling refurbished cartridges as “original and new” Canon products. Now that is very much illegal.

  7. jen says:

    how this business started?

  8. ExPat says:

    I have a Canon ip4760 with the 5 ink system. Does anyone know where I can buy replacement cartridges in Metro Manila? If I go the refill route is the PGBK close to the original? Thanks.

  9. ExPat says:

    I should have added to my last post that I am fairly new here and back in the States it was no problem to get replacement cartridges. Even though they cost more, I’m a pretty serious amateur photographer and a couple of my friends who refilled their own cartridges back there had some fairly poor results. So I’m looking to this forum for some advice. I’m especially concerned about the PGBK (pigment black) that Canon uses. Can the refillers duplicate this if I can’t find cartridges locally? Maraming Salamat.

  10. bob says:

    @bienb
    i just have to laugh at that epson printer comment.
    its so true ! XD

    we went thru 2 epson printers before settling on a canon printer. converted it into CISS, print something colored everyday (to keep the ink from drying)

    and i haven’t had to refill the damn thing in a year.

  11. Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.

    Look advanced to more added agreeable from you! However, how can we communicate?

  12. That’s sad news especially for printer users who want to save much on printing or those who want to limit environmental waste. I just hope that Canon will offer affordable options for their clients using those cartridges as a practical solution.

  13. Hi! I just want to give you a huge thumbs up for your great information you have got here on this post.
    I will be returning to your blog for more soon.

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