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Questionable Sellers Offering Photocopy Essay-Fantasy Items

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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/21/2022   12:25 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add essayk to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Note to monitors:
Not clear about the proper format for alerting the community to deceptive and/or illegal material. Please edit or relocate this as required.

Does anyone have experience with these two sellers?

Seller information
dach-3543 (55)
Based in Canada, dach-3543 has been an eBay member since Dec 31, 2021

Seller information
romad-stamps (1132)
Based in Canada, romad-stamps has been an eBay member since Oct 28, 2019


Both are offering fantasy essay blocks without certification of material that never progressed to the plate stage, but do not label is as fantasy or reproduction. Their material is not limited to US, but the US offerings would be difficult for the casual collector to verify.

I will attempt to get examples of their work and report them to eBay unless others have unsuccessfully attempted that already.
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Edited by essayk - 05/21/2022 12:27 pm

Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/21/2022   1:10 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Some examples:

The seller from Quebec sells at very low prices but does not identify the material as reproduction work:

This seller ships free.

This item sold for about $15


- - - - - - - - - -

The seller from British Columbia has a shill that bids up the items and sells them for real money, comparatively speaking:

This seller charges $19 shipping.

This item sold for $154 and change:




Make sure you know what you are getting.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
660 Posts
Posted 05/21/2022   3:19 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
1) sellers don't have to have anything certified.
2) how are the items labeled? Is the listing really deceptive, or just vague? can you just put in the links?
3) report all you want, but if you're not law enforcement or an IP owner, why should eBay take your word over the seller's?
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/21/2022   6:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
When an eBay seller offers a reproduction and does not label it as such, s/he can be challenged.
These sellers are offering unlisted items as authentic without comment or qualification, and that can be challenged.
The designs being offered exist in die format as intaglio prints, but there is no evidence that these designs were ever developed to plate format or printed as intaglio prints in that mode. Quite the contrary.
Therefore the seller must provide information about each such item that distinguishes it from a reproduction. I know from prior experience that eBay listens to that.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
660 Posts
Posted 05/21/2022   8:43 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Well, either post the links or get in touch with eBay. What do you want from us?
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
547 Posts
Posted 05/22/2022   10:30 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wtcrowe to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
There is another seller in Massachusetts who sells "forgeries" that are nothing more than reproductions of genuine stamps that he found illustrated in philatelic works. It has gotten very difficult to collect contemporary forgeries
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   10:54 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
classic_paper: most of what I am posting here is a warning TO you. The only question I asked was in the initial frame: i.e. does anyone recognize the sellers whose names were given. So far you have written in defense of this kind of business. Are you, or do you know, one or both of these sellers?

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Pillar Of The Community
United States
660 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   12:33 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I'm not defending anything, I'm pointing out that without you actually linking the sales so everyone else can read the listings for themselves instead of relying on your interpretation, this thread is pointless. And you're kind of ballsy (the most polite word I can use), to accuse me of being or associating with these sellers.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   1:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
c-p your were in my face with your first post in which you put up a three point defense for listing such material. That defense opens the door to the possibility that you are familiar with the sellers or possibly even party to these actions. I hope you are not.

On the matter of showing the eBay listings I provided pics from the lots, and in my first post specified the seller names, but since you demand lot specifics, here are two examples:

This is a just completed listing from dach-3543:
Columbia 1869: https://www.ebay.com/itm/394075201795

Here is a current listing from romad-stamps:
Freedom Statue 1876: https://www.ebay.com/itm/185430271660

Both these items emulate designs which were created by the Continental Bank Note Co., but which, based on authenticated archival material, never progressed beyond the die state.
In the second case the seller states "Stamps US 1869 ESSAYS Proof BLOCK EXTREMELY RARE" but the design was not created until circa 1876.

I have not yet handled an example of these specific stamp reproductions, and so cannot yet comment on the printing, but from the images I do not believe they are intaglio prints. If that is so they are entirely bogus as Continental BNCo essay-proof material, and are at best reproductions.

The eBay policy on stamp listings reads:

"What is the policy?

Counterfeit stamps and equipment designed to make these items are not allowed
Collectible stamps must include a picture of the actual item being sold and specify any alterations or flaws not seen in the photo
For replica stamps, the listing's title, description and photos must clearly state or show that the item is a replica."
Emphasis mine

Until I get actual examples in my hands I can only go by what the sellers say and show. But it doesn't look good.

Why do I care? If you look in the U.S. Specialized you will see that the original essays are quite pricey. I have a large investment in the original die essays, and exhibit them. I do not want the general stamp buying public to be misled by unlabelled reprints (aka "fakes") and thus inclined to distance themselves from the actual stamps. Collectors need to stick together and protect the hobby.

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Edited by essayk - 05/23/2022 1:55 pm
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United States
10530 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   3:52 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Adding images to this thread to preserve additional value after eBay listings disappear.

In my opinion threads which increase the ability of hobbyists in making informed buying decisions are of value.
Don

dach-3543



romad-stamps



If reporting these listings to eBay, it may be more effective to go through eBay.ca then to try to do it through eBay.com?
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   5:01 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you, Don. It had not occurred to me to show the feedback for these sellers, in particular the negative feedback. Let me add that what you are showing is the feedback for the second seller; romad-stamps. The first seller, dach-3543, signed on with eBay under that name on Dec. 31, 2021. You could not show feedback for that seller since he only has one report for 55 clients showing despite 114 sales in the past five months. Hmmm, trouble in the henhouse?

The production source(s) for both these sellers used a distinctive brownish paper which is the principal "tell" that these items do not hark back to the original stamp producers. I am not sure it is the same paper for both, but in either case nothing quite like it was used by US stamp producers in the nineteenth century.
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Forum Dad
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USA
1778 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   6:46 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add bobby131313 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
What do you want from us?


A discussion obviously since that is the main goal of this forum. Geez.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
660 Posts
Posted 05/23/2022   7:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
your were in my face with your first post in which you put up a three point defense for listing such material. That defense opens the door to the possibility that you are familiar with the sellers or possibly even party to these actions. I hope you are not.

No. I'm not defending anything, I'm laying out the facts. I saw, I think accurately, that you were starting another "bad eBay seller" thread about some listings that you hadn't specified, offering your interpretation of the listings without just doing an easy copy-paste for us all to review. Like all of these sorts of threads, no one here will have bought from them or likely ever will. If you believe it's actionable, then act instead of just writing about it.

You repeatedly note that the seller(s) are based in Canada, and you plainly see that I'm in the US. Yet for a second time, you accuse me of being affiliated with them, somehow. Grow up.
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Edited by classic_paper - 05/23/2022 7:55 pm
Pillar Of The Community
1077 Posts
Posted 05/24/2022   02:30 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DrewM to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
"That defense opens the door to the possibility that you are familiar with the sellers or possibly even party to these actions"

It also "opens the possibility" that you are being overly defensive of your own claims by the very extreme claim of virtually accusing another commenter of possibly being a cheat who is in league with counterfeiters. There is zero evidence of that. You merely jumped to that conclusion for reasons of your own. We live in a world today filled with all sorts of unsupported allegations of the worst kind, so I suppose we should be used to it, but it's unfair and uncalled for to accuse someone this way. And it's a low blow in any discussion to allege someone might be "a party" to counterfeiters.

Posting about these stamps, or whatever they are, is a useful service to collectors. It helps us become more aware of what's being sold and that helps us learn more about what "can" be sold as well as how it's sold. These are all good things, and it could have been left that way without all the defensiveness. Unfortunately, it degenerated pretty fast into accusations. Let people give their point of view (In this case it was that worrying about this sort of thing wasn't really worth the trouble) without attacking them. That would be my advice. A lot of us have forgotten how to do that, including me at times (I'm afraid).

As for this discussion, I lean toward allowing people to sell whatever they want to sell (for the most part) and not feeling we have to police everyone whose products we don't like. These are apparently some kind of "cinderella" or unissued stamps or whatever they are, and yes they should be identified as such, but if they aren't it's always been "caveat emptor" and you'd be best to check on their authenticity using a stamp catalogue before you buy them -- and buy only from qualified sellers with a comfortable return policy. If a buyer is generally ignorant of stamps or too lazy to use a stamp catalogue, they will surely make some mistaken purchases. Should we alert the press to that? I don't think so.
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Edited by DrewM - 05/24/2022 02:37 am
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458 Posts
Posted 05/24/2022   04:54 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add archerg to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I repeatedly report sellers to eBay listing replica philatelic material. I only report when I am 100% certain - I would not feel good about harming an honest seller - and doubt my individual efforts are effective. I hope others also take action, as eBay begins to take notice when multiple users report the same fraud.

Expect a fake name, fake country of origin, fake return address, etc. from these con artists. Only naive people would buy this material online at deep discount from a stranger.

Dealers already have buyers for scarce genuine essays, they need only call a customer to sell it. I have only once in twenty years seen a genuine "find" of pre-production material on eBay, it came from a reputable bookseller who found it by chance. The buyers paid fair market value for it and first made absolutely sure it was genuine.

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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1798 Posts
Posted 05/26/2022   3:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add essayk to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
archerg said it best:


Quote:
I repeatedly report sellers to eBay listing replica philatelic material. I only report when I am 100% certain - I would not feel good about harming an honest seller - and doubt my individual efforts are effective. I hope others also take action, as eBay begins to take notice when multiple users report the same fraud.
emphasis mine.

If everyone on this thread reported the problem, eBay would have plenty of reason to take notice. If you are not familiar with this material, how can you be sure there is a problem? Because I told you there is a problem and I showed you examples of it. "But who are you to say what's authentic?", you may be asking.

Well, if you had been in SCF in 2013 you might have run across this thread https://www.stampcommunity.org/topi...ral%2Cessays

I owned most of the material in that thread then, have added to it since, and several years ago wrote it up to give the present listings in the Scott Catalog essay section for these essays. I continue to exhibit them in WSP shows, and earned a large gold for such an exhibit in 2021.

Some of you may not like me, but you can trust my judgement about these stamps. What those sellers are selling are modern reproductions and fantasy items, but without labelling them as such. Some people are being taken advantage of as a result. If we don't stand up to protect the hobby from this problem and who will? At the least it is up to us to do what we can to put a stop to it.

If you look carefully at my first two posts you will see that I gave you the eBay seller IDs of those hawking these fakes. Don gave you some direct page examples. I have already reported the problem and ask you to do the same. If you need more info about the real essays, to see the problem, simply ask. If enough of us take steps, eBay may as well.
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