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Scraping The Bottom Of The Barrel - Nystamps

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Posted 11/28/2016   10:27 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add dudley to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
As I said above, I too buy from this seller, but I take Don's point that there is more going on with them than simply not pointing out faults in their descriptions. It is very clear that the repairs such as those shown in the original post are being made by or at the behest of the seller--there have been too many of them that are identical in appearance to these to warrant any other conclusion.
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Posted 11/29/2016   12:20 am  Show Profile Check eyeonwall's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add eyeonwall to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I'm not so worried about examples like this picture, where the stamps' condition is fairly obvious. More troubling are listings with the slight tear that's barely visible or the crease or thin that's not so obvious.


Exactly
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Posted 11/29/2016   08:07 am  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
More troubling are listings with the slight tear that's barely visible or the crease or thin that's not so obvious.


But this is hardly anything new, either in stamps or any other collectible, let alone this particular seller. In fact, I would posit that the MAJORITY of eBay sellers do not verbally describe their merchandise, either implicitly or even explicitly allowing the picture(s) to showcase the condition of the items.

Regardless of whether verbal descriptions SHOULD be required, they nevertheless are not (or are not policed), and this is not likely to change. You can either tilt at windmills trying to change a system that doesn't want to change, or approach every prospective purchase with a healthy dose of caveat emptor and guard yourself (and others) accordingly.

In fact, sellers not verbally describing wares makes it infinitely easier to file SNAD claims, and ultimately the buyer is protected. Now, if the issue is instead one of buyers not being educated enough or careful enough to know what it is they are buying, then that is a different matter.

I have seen plenty of auctions where the merchandise not only is photographed in excruciating detail and resolution, but also flaws meticulously described, and yet people still pay stupid money for the items. No amount of policing sellers is going to fix that, nor IMO should it. To quote the estimable Ron White, "You can't fix stupid."

Personally, I would focus less on trying to change eBay or eBay sellers, and more on providing resources for the novice or intermediate buyer. Step-by-step FAQs with pictures showcasing the various types of transgressions. The Stamp Smarter database is great for what it is, but that's not a format that a beginning buyer is likely to approach. A "user guide" in the form of a wiki or knowledgebase/FAQ is likely to be more approachable... and as part of this I would recommend putting a large emphasis on not only the dangers, but more importantly the responsibilities that buying on eBay entails. Too many approach it casually, throwing far more money into it than they should as a novice, and then lament how they were scammed/burned after the fact, when a bit of prudence and education could have thwarted such experiences.

In short: It's more about saving buyers from themselves and predatory practices than changing seller practices. The former will be far more productive than the latter.
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Posted 11/29/2016   08:39 am  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree with most everything that Dan posted.


Quote:
...No amount of policing sellers is going to fix that, nor IMO should it. To quote the estimable Ron White, "You can't fix stupid."...


To a degree this is certainly true. It is proven by the fact that even back in the 'brick and mortar' days there where dealers who did unethical things.

But there was a type of competitive forces at work that often limited the number of unethical dealers. This largely came in the form of 'bad reputations'. It behooved most brick and mortar dealers to form a good relationship with new collectors, chances were high for a long-term (and profitable) relationship. Investing a large amount of money to stock and open a retail store provided motivation to seek long term business relationships.

But the internet changed this and impacted the marketplace. It takes little to no real investment to establish a selling account. A 'bad' reputation can easily be side-stepped and avoided (ala Cartel). We now suddenly have tens of thousands of 'dealers' (using the term VERY loosely) who are now competing for sales; returning customers are not a concern for many of these type 'dealers'.

My concern is not with experienced collectors who wish to roll the dice. My concern is with the new collectors who think they are getting some kind of 'good deal', those who might not recognize that the stamp shown in low res image is repaired. It took more time for this dealer to look up the catalog value and post it then it would have to type the word 'faulty' in the listing. In my opinion there is no defense of this practice. This dealer did not have any blanket statement about repairs in the listings until we fussed at him about it and he added it about a year ago.

Perhaps it is just me but I would never recommend this seller to a newer collector who was interested in building a good quality collection.


Quote:
...The Stamp Smarter database is great for what it is, but that's not a format that a beginning buyer is likely to approach. A "user guide" in the form of a wiki or knowledgebase/FAQ is likely to be more approachable...


Stamp Smarter also has other features that assist new collectors including an article on "How To Buy Online - Tips - What To Watch For"; there are also a number of other 'How To' articles.
Don
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Posted 11/29/2016   10:35 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add TheArtfulHinger to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I would never recommend this seller to a newer collector

Nor would I. I would also recommend that said newer collector be very careful when buying from any seller they're not familiar with. I've been disappointed more than once from eBay purchases, and nearly every time it's been because I didn't look closely enough at the listing before I purchased it. While I do wish that sellers would describe every stamp in detail via a written disclosure, pretty much every time I've gotten a faulty stamp I've gone back and looked at the picture on the original listing again and sure enough, the fault is visible in the picture. I learned pretty quickly to examine those photos closely and to look at listings skeptically.
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Edited by TheArtfulHinger - 11/29/2016 11:00 am
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Posted 11/29/2016   5:35 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add bookbndrbob to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree with TheArtfulHinger. Many sellers won't say a word about a flaw. One practice I particularly dislike is the seller burying a significant statement in text. Today, I saw one with "see second scan." hiding in the middle of a paragraph. If one looked at the second scan VERY closely, a pin hole could be seen. I try to make a mental note of sellers to avoid, but really I should keep a list.
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Posted 11/29/2016   5:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jkelley01938 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Bob,

I have such a list. Its a short list but a list nevertheless.


Jack
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Posted 11/29/2016   9:27 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add uboatnut to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I too keep a "do not buy" list of sellers and dealers.

One way to head off problems is to tell the seller you plan to send the purchase for certification (assuming the CV is high enough to warrant doing so).

Since eBay will not dispute a certificate, the seller will be forced to refund if it does not support his description - if he doesn't refund immediately. Marginal sellers who know they'll get caught may well find a reason not to deliver the item (can't find it; oops, made an error in the listing; etc.)

CAVEAT EMPTOR is still the rule of the day.
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Posted 11/29/2016   10:35 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
One way to head off problems is to tell the seller you plan to send the purchase for certification (assuming the CV is high enough to warrant doing so).


In all fairness, you should discuss this with the seller BEFORE you bid or purchase, not after the fact, as there are several aspects of this that need to be agreed upon by BOTH parties:

1. Which expertization service? PF?... PSE?... PSAG? APEX? Sismondo? Bob's Stamp Expertization Service and Lawnmower Repair?

2. Who pays for the cert if the stamp is found to be good?... What if bad?... What if it is a declined opinion?

3. Is the return privilege based upon getting a good cert for authenticity only, no undisclosed faults, or a specific grade?

Depending on the buyer's expectations or demands, I can EASILY see a seller being unwilling to enter into such an arrangement, and for legitimate reasons, especially if the first the seller finds out about it is after the sale.

The fact that a seller may want to void the sale after being ambushed by this after the fact does NOT necessarily mean the stamp was not as advertised.

For example, as long as the most major faults of a stamp are accurately described in the listing, an expectation on the part of the buyer that the seller should honor a return and/or pay for the cert fee if the stamp comes back genuine but a slightly different description of faults or not making a certain numeric grade, is IMO unreasonable.

As long as both parties are aware of and agree to the terms of extension and/or return PRIOR to purchase, then all is well and good. Bringing it up after the fact is not.
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Edited by revenuecollector - 11/29/2016 10:37 pm
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Posted 11/29/2016   11:33 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add uboatnut to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Unfortunately, not all sellers state their certification policies in their listings. Of those who do, only a few specify whose certificates they will accept. At least one large seller openly states that encased or graded certificates are not accepted. No seller that I'm aware of will accept a return that grades other than what he claimed, and I can't blame them for that, given the highly subjective nature of grading.

Those sellers that do state their policies also state that they must be notified at the time the item is paid for so they know to extend the allowed return time. There's money to be made by listing a lightly hinged stamp as NH, a re-gummed one as OG, or a reperf as normal. On a low to medium value stamp, the buyer is very unlikely to invest time and money for certification. On high value items, the reverse is true.

Bottom line, there is no eBay blanket policy regarding certificates and the appropriate conditions to which all sellers must abide. Each seller can make up their own.

As I've said many times - CAVEAT EMPTOR. Buy from sellers with whom you (or others you trust) have a history, especially for the big dollar purchases.
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Posted 11/30/2016   07:39 am  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
My point was that if you are going to go this route with a seller and they don't specify terms of extension in the listing, you as the buyer owe them the courtesy of discussing your intent prior to the purchase, not after the fact.

Your previous post implied that the first mention would be after the purchase was completed rather than beforehand as a method to "head off problems". It's not the extension I have issues with, but rather the timing and method of broaching the subject.

It's like trying to negotiate shipping charges after you have agreed to the terms of the purchase; you are backing the seller into a corner.
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Edited by revenuecollector - 11/30/2016 07:42 am
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