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Ebay Sellers Allowed To Sell Obvious Fakes

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Posted 03/02/2022   6:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rumb to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree there is a market for certain counterfeits ,I have such as PR3 newspaper stamps, but they are vintage, plentiful and known. An educated collector knows easily which ones of this issue are fake.

I also have a 1036 4C Lincoln well know but rare counterfeit. Scotts lists it now.

But I have a feeling many folks buying this guys fakes dont have a clue what they are getting. My #1 objection is that eBay doesnt enforce their own rule that they be marked as such.
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Posted 03/02/2022   6:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Based upon the "sold" prices I believe buyers know they are fake. I mean, if you don't know that you just bought five rare stamps with a combined cv of thousands of dollars for under a hundred bucks without certificates and that they are not real perhaps you need a Darwin Award.
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Posted 03/03/2022   1:26 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
After doing some more research I can say that this seller operates out of Albania. Location of Montreal being in their listings is untrue. Shill bidding is also in the mix. Also, this seller has been reported to eBay multiple times since at least the beginning of 2021 for selling fakes with no action taken. Reminds me of the Cartel/Philip Ryle in that eBay turns a blind eye. It is really galling that this is allowed to go on and this Albanian seller is raking in in excess of $300,000/year doing it. Tell me that there are not multiple felonies taking place here.
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Posted 03/03/2022   3:26 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mootermutt987 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That's just it - at some point, 'turning a blind eye' doesn't cut it anymore. At some point, eBay is complicit. With multiple warnings from buyers and viewers, they can no longer claim that they were unaware of this activity. There MUST be a tilting point where the profits are no longer worth the liability. The idea that they are simply a marketplace, and not responsible for any of the sellers' activities is the equivalent of Facebook simply being a social media platform and not responsible for what the people there are doing.
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Posted 03/06/2022   09:58 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rumb to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That seller that sold $300K means eBay walked with maybe $40K. no wonder they dont care.
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Posted 03/06/2022   2:01 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Parcelpostguy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
That's just it - at some point, 'turning a blind eye' doesn't cut it anymore. At some point, eBay is complicit. With multiple warnings from buyers and viewers, they can no longer claim that they were unaware of this activity. There MUST be a tilting point where the profits are no longer worth the liability. The idea that they are simply a marketplace, and not responsible for any of the sellers' activities is the equivalent of Facebook simply being a social media platform and not responsible for what the people there are doing.


But the law specifically allows that and has for over a quarter of a century:

47 U.S.C. 230, a Provision of the Communication Decency Act--

Section 230 says that "No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider" (47 U.S.C. 230).

Sales of stolen material on such platforms couple with little to no consequence for stealing such material from retail establishments sets up a perfect storm.

Thieves use two ways (of many) to even cover-up stamp thefts by claiming "inheritance" or "storage auction" material which in both cases absolved the holder of the stolen material from proving ownership via a receipt. Thus I am of mixed emotions helping people out on the internet who claim to have "gotten" material or collection via inheritance or nameless auction find. [My comments are based upon both personal and professional training and experience understanding of methods of covering the fact property is in fact stolen.]
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Posted 03/06/2022   2:08 pm  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
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Posted 03/06/2022   2:56 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
PPG - I agree that eBay is protected under 230. That should not be confused with being innocent of wrongdoing. To put it another way eBay has Diplomatic Immunity and that is my point.
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Posted 03/06/2022   5:36 pm  Show Profile Check eyeonwall's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add eyeonwall to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
"Section 230 says that "No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider" (47 U.S.C. 230)."

There is a difference between free speech and fraud, so are the really exempt? And if they are exempt of all consequences, why do they ban sales of certain countries?
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Posted 03/06/2022   5:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
There have been numerous court cases that affirmed that eBay has 230 protections. One involved the sale on eBay of fraudulent sports cards and certificates.

Some Countries are banned because the Government mandates it.
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Posted 03/06/2022   9:44 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DrewM to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Periodically, there is a great gnashing of teeth over frauds, fakes, counterfeits, and other bad stamp-related things, and nothing ever comes of it. I suspect this is because humans are human. They would like to own a rare stamp or two and even suspecting that the stamp or stamps they are buying might not be genuine, they still want to own it. In fact, if they are explicitly told the stamp they want is not genuine, that it's only a "copy" or a "reproduction" of a rare or uncommon stamp, they'll still buy it. I've done that. Mea culpa. There are many blank spots in my albums for stamps I'll never own. They're too rare and too expensive even if I could find a copy to buy. A few times I've mounted a similar-looking stamp in that space, knowing that anyone with any common sense will realize it's not the real stamp. In fact, maybe it's even a copy issued by that country's postal service. It's not unusual for a country to issue stamps in honor of earlier stamps. The U.S. honored its first two stamps from 1847 with a souvenir sheet it issued a century later depicting pretty accurate images of those same stamps. What if I buy one of those souvenir sheets (they're cheap) and cut out the two stamp images and mount them in my collection in those two blank spaces? Did I just commit a crime? Hardly. Any collector who would think they were the real things would be a real amateur. Many countries do this. I recall the Netherlands and Sweden and many others have honored their early stamps by issuing government-printed reproductions. And the U.S. has done this more than once. It reissued the entire Columbian series, among others, albeit with minor changes. A collector with only mnodest resources could take those reissued, much cheaper, Columbians and mount them in the spaces for the real ones, and the result would look pretty good. Nothing wrong with that. They're "copies," but no one is trying to cheat anyone -- and that last part is the important thing. The first part, that there are copies for sale, is pretty minor stuff. just don't lie about what they are.

If you buy, as I have a few times, stamps advertised as copies or reproductions because they are the only way I'll ever own that stamp, the only way that space will ever be filled, who have I harmed? Especially if the stamp has "faux" or "copy" or "reproduction" on the back. I even make it more obvious to anyone who inherits my collection: I write "copy" below the stamp in my album. I don't want anyone thinking it's a rare stamp even if it's a pretty decent reproduction of a rare stamp. And it's also marked on the back of the stamps. If copies or reproductions are not marked as such, then there might be a problem, but usually there isn't any problem. Have you even looked at the awful quality of most fakes? They are so obviously not the real stamps, it's laughable. What is not quite as laughable are photocopied fakes of real stamps that look just like the originals and are claimed to be the originals. Those I'm a bit scared of since they could fool a lot of even good collectors. But mark them as "copies" and you're just fine in my book.

On the whole, I just smile at the regular appearance if frustrated anger at fakes and reproductions. They've been around since stamp collecting has been around. You aren't going to stop them. And, no, eBay and any seller is not responsible for employing a squad of stamp experts to examine the authenticity of every stamp offered for sale. That's up to the buyer, hence the phrase caveat emptor. Ask for a certificate or get one soon after buying if you're spending a lot of money. Otherwise, write "copy" on the back of the stamp, and enjoy filling that empty space even if it's not the real thing. I own a few paintings that look remarkably like the work of famous artists but it doesn't reduce my pleasure in owning them. When they get sold later, even though they're well done, no one is going to be fooled.

I'd guess that 80% of the early stamps of Japan for sale at any time anywhere are fakes. It was just the practice back then to make copies of stamps to sell to collectors. As the demand for Japanese stamps rose way beyond the availability of early stamps which had apparently been issued in very small numbers, up stepped some pragmatic individuals who produced some very good (sometimes) copies of those stamps. Entire books have been written to distinguish the various fakes and forgeries from real stamps. You could make an entire collection just of these stamps, and some collectors have done that. I don't see it as a moral issue to get worked up over. It's capitalism at its finest. Find a market and satisfy it as best you can.

Meanwhile, I have more blank spaces to fill with something that looks at least a little like real stamps. As long as I'm not told fakes are "real" or "genuine" and charged accordingly, I haven't been cheated.
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Edited by DrewM - 03/06/2022 9:53 pm
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Posted 03/06/2022   10:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
There is legislation in the works to remove Section 230 protection from platforms such as eBay that has bipartisan support. It may pass shortly. It will more specifically target items sold on eBay that have life/safety implications such as PPE that does not provide protection and baby monitors that catch fire. Collectibles are being discussed because intentional fraud has caused financial harm to quite a few people.

I will never understand the "it has been going on forever" argument. There are no victimless crimes.

We are not talking about items marked or marketed as replicas or copies here. We are talking about deliberate deception. Please, let's not conflate the two issues.
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Posted 03/06/2022   10:56 pm  Show Profile Check eyeonwall's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add eyeonwall to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
" I don't see it as a moral issue to get worked up over. It's capitalism at its finest."

I beg to differ.
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Posted 03/07/2022   09:56 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The academic arguments aside, no one has offered a realistic proposal for what exactly what eBay should do about it. I'm pretty certain I could come up with good reasons why nothing anyone comes up with would work, but you are welcome to try and stump me.
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Posted 03/07/2022   11:10 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 that it is not feasible to thoroughly vet the account holders but they could do much better than what they do now. This is the root cause of much of the issues. Right now, eBay supports multiple accounts and this could be limited if they wanted to. Filter better for accounts who are obviously pumping up their feedback scores via cheap listings with the sole purpose of build a'good' track record..

They could also dump the current badly broken 'seller rating' system; turn it over to a 3rd party (without skin in the game), stop removing negative feedbacks. Anyone with an IQ over room temperature knows that a legitimate QA system gathers ALL data and that systems which allow manipulation of the data collected is nearly worthless. And they could also implement a buyer feedback system and give sellers the ability to set parameters which filter out buyers with a history of transactional problems.

They could also use their significant database history and algorithms to catch ridiculous listings. I support folks being able to ask various prices for their material, but it would be straight forward to flag listings (and sellers) which are asking exponentially (like 100 times) more than market values.

They should stop with the free, unlimited listings and relistings. There could be reasonable limits for relisting but allowing people to endlessly relist stuff literally for years seem inane.

These suggestions would not, of course, resolve deceptive and fraudulent listings on the platform but would greatly improve the current 'Wild West' free-for-all situation in my opinion. Throwing out 'caveat emptor' as a justification license for doing absolutely nothing and sets the bar at its lowest possible level.
Don
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