Author Topic: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.  (Read 1058 times)

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Offline Oesho

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Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« on: October 21, 2015, 02:44:07 PM »
Twice I informed the seller of the eBay item  http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/231711565213?dest=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fitm%2F231711565213 that this is a cast forgery. Nevertheless the listing remains. To report eBay that this is a forgery is virtually impossible. Has anyone a better solution to get this item from eBay?

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2015, 04:56:43 PM »
The US branch of eBay is about as co-operative as an irritated snake on its eggs :) If it doesn't make money they are totally disinterested. One idea may be to complain to the Better Business Bureau. Since eBay's HQ is in San Josť, that is likely to be the Sacramento office. I suggest to use this link and the "contact" item on the "get to know us" menu. Yell if you need support. Enough people here are fed up with eBay's "business methods" and I am one of them.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline @josephjk

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2015, 04:59:57 PM »
I reported it as a fake too,  after I saw Oesho's post but I doubt they'll react..

Offline Oesho

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2015, 12:11:56 AM »
I have contacted the seller via the e-mail provided. Will see what happen.

Offline Jeff 11

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2015, 12:40:07 AM »
Hi Guys,

I'm Jeff, the seller of the coin on eBay. Had some issues opening the message via the listing (kept getting an error message) but have recieved an email from Oesho just now. For the moment I won't accept any offers or sell the coin pending further enquiry, tomorrow I will get the piece out of storage and investigate more fully. I'll get the weight, better photos edge pics etc and discuss it in some more detail openly on here. If it is conclusively a some form of reproduction, then it will be removed and auctioned off with a full description. Just for a little provenance, it came from a large lot of South Asian coins sold at a numismatic auction house, a couple of which were subsequently slabbed.

As a side note, it must be difficult for eBay to act on notifications of suspected coin forgeries. Whoever processes these will likely not have any numismatic knowledge to qualify if a complaint is valid or not. If they just took down every listing that was reported without fail it would be misused in a heartbeat. The new returns process that virtually all sellers now have to use make it near impossible to refute a return if the buyer claims an item is not as described regardless of if the seller states they accept returns or not -annoying as it can be for honest sellers, it does make it more difficult for the more dishonest sellers to screw over an unsuspecting buyer.

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2015, 10:52:19 AM »
Hello Jeff, welcome to WoC. Thank you very much for this reaction. I wish more people would be so willing to engage in a dialogue and commend you for displaying that willingness. I think open dialogue would solve a large number of problems. Alas, our experience as buyers is the reverse ;)

Oesho is not just anyone. He is a world class collector of Indian coins and an accomplished author, as well as an active contributor to many internet sites and numismatic activities. He's no deity and does make mistakes, but they are few and far in between.

You are right that you cannot expect eBay to have the knowledge to judge suspected forgeries, but that is not the problem. First, its Belgian competitor, Delcampe, has a committee of experts to investigate complaints about coins. I don't know how well it works, but note that it is possible to do something about this huge problem for collectors. Second, the issue was before the sale, not afterwards and, as Oesho notes, it is practically impossible to get through to eBay at that point. Third, even after the sale, eBay maintains strict date deadlines and demands that frustrate many complaints.

Our members have had some success getting forgeries removed from eBay India. It was a major effort each time. One of our former members even sued eBay repeatedly and had to give up, as he could not change eBay behaviour. At any time there was an issue, eBay was unresponsive or worse. Together with procedures that are tilted heavily towards the seller, that is the problem.

As Oesho says your coin is cast, its weight should be off. A "ping" test should confirm its lower density. If the patina can be wiped off easily, it is a modern forgery, rather than a contemporary counterfeit. If that is the case, I would appreciate if you would destroy the item, rather than re-sell it. Not everyone is as honest as you and if you sell a modern forgery, someone else will eventually try to sell it as genuine.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline andyg

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2015, 01:10:16 AM »
I removed my post earlier since the seller was kind enough to talk to us there is no need to display the business seller info from ebay (It's available on ebay to anyone with access to the auction on ebay.uk) but here it would be on show for ever.

I must at least try to redress the balance of this statement -
Quote
Together with procedures that are tilted heavily towards the seller, that is the problem

As someone who has sold - and fallen foul of poor buyers* - the rules actually benefit the buyer more than the seller.  Thus the ebay rules I would argue are tilted heavily towards them (ebay)

*buyer ndoroman1 who tried to buy one of my listings off ebay, when I refused he then won it and claimed his money back through "non delivery".  Unfortunately, the postman had not had him sign for my registered parcel, leaving him with the coin and me out of pocket.

always willing to trade modern UK coins for modern coins from elsewhere....

Offline Figleaf

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Re: Cast forgery of Indo-Portuguese tanga on eBay.
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2015, 11:36:37 AM »
My impression is that the situation for job lot buyers is different than for those who buy individual coins. If a job lot buyer finds a rotten apple, he can usually just shrug (though I vividly remember the case where one of our members bought a lot for one coin and on delivery, that coin had been exchanged for another).

The bigger trouble is when an individual coin turns out to be bad. If the buyer is in another country, the date deadline for filing a complaint may be so tight that delivery may be close to it or even behind it. Supporting documents, such as a certificate that the coin is not as described may be hard to get within the deadline and require travel on a working day.

Compare this with an average coin dealer: even if the problem is just that you made a mistake ordering the coin because you already have one, they'll allow you to send it back (some require from customers they don't know that it is still in the original packaging) and you get a refund without any procedures. Auction houses are stricter, but they will normally take back a coin that is not as described without complaint. I am not advocating that eBay sellers do the same, just that buyers get at least a reasonable chance to complain.

In addition, there is the original problem before the sale that eBay is unresponsive. Again, compare this to a bricks-and-mortar dealer or auction house. They take one look at the coin you claim to be a fake. If they have any doubts they withdraw it (I have seen dealers throw it in the bin immediately, though). The good sellers on eBay do the same. The bad ones ignore you and you have no recourse.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.