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Fake Autographs On Memorabilia And Collectibles

Aug 18, 2007
While it is true that the internet is a huge source for autographed memorabilia and collectibles, it has also caused serious problems as many sellers are out there to defraud collectors with fake autographs. People have been selling fake autographs most especially on eBay as it is easy for them to defraud their victims who may be amateurs, first time bidders or those who do not know that much at all about the industry. They are lured into thinking that the signature is indeed authentic most especially if they do not know how to spot a fake. Some vendors even go to the point of providing their very own certificate of authenticity and a satisfaction guarantee to build the customer's confidence and give that feeling of security. Others even provide their items with holograms to pass them up as authentic autographed merchandise and to let the buyer think that they are a legitimate seller or vendor.

Most buyers are not that experienced enough to be able to distinguish between an autograph that is authentic and one that is a fake plus the fact that pictures you see or autographs provided may be scanned or not that clear at all.

When buying on eBay, a seller bearing a good feedback is not at all a guarantee that he or she will be selling authentic autographed memorabilia or collectibles. The good feedback may be due to the fast and efficient service the seller provides in shipping out the purchased items. In fact, the FBI has put to prison several fake dealers distributing and selling fake autographs. They all had excellent feedback testimonials and a positive feedback level was maintained.

While it is hard for potential customers to tell whether a particular autograph is genuine or not online, so much more is the difficulty once the item is received. In fact, most of the buyers learn only that the autographed item they purchased is a fake when they have it authenticated or when an experienced collector or an expert on the matter informs them so.

The whole sports memorabilia and collectibles industry suffers when vendors selling fake autographed merchandise discourage and disheartens serious and honest buyers. Reputable dealers and sellers in the business get affected in the process and generally the whole hobby itself gets affected as well.

The solution here would be to buy only from reputable companies who are known to conduct events with athletes and who contract them directly. Reputable companies always inform their buyers when and where the item was actually signed because they document the signing. Then when it comes to unknown sellers, taking a look at the other items they sell can alert you on whether or not this particular seller is offering genuine autographs. Before making any purchase, study the seller and the items that he/she is selling. Not only will you later on save both time and money, you avoid making a mistake that can turn out to be expensive.
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