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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Jan, 2007 8:08 am    Post subject: Caveat Emptor         Reply with quote

Shocking news about Eftis:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-2570050,00.html

Or maybe not.

It has been noted countless times on these forums but it may be worth repeating again.

If you are buying antiques

1) Be sure you are dealing with a reputable seller - and it might be a good idea to check into their background yourself don't just take their word or ebay feed back for it.

2) Make sure that there is a good return policy

3) As Mr. Bernard Levine (a top knife appraiser) has often said, know what you know, know what you don't, and know the difference.

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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 29 Jan, 2007 8:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for posting this, Russ. I know a lot of people on the Antique & Military Sword forum on SFI were relieved to see this article. If you have questions about eBay sellers or internet antiques dealers, there is a lot of collective knowledge on the A&M forum at SFI. There are also a number of people here that collect antiques. If anyone has questions about dealer/seller reputation, contact forumites with some knowledge of the market. It could save you money and time.

Jonathan
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Jan, 2007 8:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jonathan Hopkins wrote:
Thanks for posting this, Russ. I know a lot of people on the Antique & Military Sword forum on SFI were relieved to see this article. If you have questions about eBay sellers or internet antiques dealers, there is a lot of collective knowledge on the A&M forum at SFI. There are also a number of people here that collect antiques. If anyone has questions about dealer/seller reputation, contact forumites with some knowledge of the market. It could save you money and time.

Jonathan


You are welcome sir. I forgot to add another rule... Happy

4) If it is too good to be true, it is.

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Jonathan Blair




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PostPosted: Mon 29 Jan, 2007 11:30 am    Post subject: Re: Caveat Emptor         Reply with quote

times online wrote:
A spokesman for eBay said he expected that the company would now launch an investigation into Paraskevaides. Anyone caught shill bidding risks a permanent ban.

Nothing is permanent in the world of the internet, where identity can change with the click of a mouse.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Tue 30 Jan, 2007 11:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

He has been caught just as being practicing the non-noble art of shill bidding.

Nothing has been said about what he has sold.

It has been noted many times that many of his pieces were previously unknown or undocumented private purchases from old collectors.

So the biggest doubt remain, was he simply an unscrupolous vendor or was he a seller of fake items?

For the moment there seem to be no proof that he sold fake items.

Two factors could refrain people who have doubt from their purchase from coming forward.

First, people who have spent high amount of money will tend to avoid telling the world they have a fake, they will try to resell the item to other customers as soon as they can. Otherwise recuperating money could be very difficult and costly, a slow legal process with uncertain results.

Secondly collectors will be shy to let other see that their knowledge is not sufficient to protect them from a fake, lowering their social status among other collectors and possibly exposing them to other con attempts.

Time will tell if the paraskevaides museum items were good or not.
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Allan Senefelder
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Jan, 2007 1:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ebay seems to have been spured to move fast at least in this case as "bidancient" his handle on ebay is no longer registered there as a seller or buyer.
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Jan, 2007 2:54 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bruno Giordan wrote:
He has been caught just as being practicing the non-noble art of shill bidding.

Nothing has been said about what he has sold.

It has been noted many times that many of his pieces were previously unknown or undocumented private purchases from old collectors.

So the biggest doubt remain, was he simply an unscrupolous vendor or was he a seller of fake items?

For the moment there seem to be no proof that he sold fake items.

Two factors could refrain people who have doubt from their purchase from coming forward.

First, people who have spent high amount of money will tend to avoid telling the world they have a fake, they will try to resell the item to other customers as soon as they can. Otherwise recuperating money could be very difficult and costly, a slow legal process with uncertain results.

Secondly collectors will be shy to let other see that their knowledge is not sufficient to protect them from a fake, lowering their social status among other collectors and possibly exposing them to other con attempts.

Time will tell if the paraskevaides museum items were good or not.


You are exactly right on all points.

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Last edited by Russ Ellis on Tue 30 Jan, 2007 9:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Jan, 2007 3:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Let me remind everyone that some of these discussions could cause this site undue legal woes. Let's not engage in unfounded speculation.
Happy

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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Sun 04 Feb, 2007 9:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is an update on the story: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-2583065,00.html

Jonathan
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Mon 05 Feb, 2007 7:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Did they change the page on us or am I just not looking in the right place? Blush
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Mon 05 Feb, 2007 8:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, it appears to have been moved, and I cannot find it at the moment. I'll try to summarize based on memory. Basically, eBay has banned him for life. They are also banning a number of his regular bidders. A large number of bids came from an account held by his ex-wife. Undaunted, he is opening his own website: www.bidancient.com

Jonathan
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Mon 05 Feb, 2007 10:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jonathan Hopkins wrote:
Yes, it appears to have been moved, and I cannot find it at the moment. I'll try to summarize based on memory. Basically, eBay has banned him for life. They are also banning a number of his regular bidders. A large number of bids came from an account held by his ex-wife. Undaunted, he is opening his own website: www.bidancient.com

Jonathan


Lol, as they say where there's a will there's a way... also I believe that there are some sayings about fools and their money and suckers and minutes... Happy

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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Tue 06 Feb, 2007 8:29 am    Post subject: A Warning To Ebay Users         Reply with quote

Fellow myArmoury Members,

I know many, if not most, of you would not consider purchasing an antique sword or weapon off of Ebay. The risks of doing so are consideradble, not the least of which being that you could end up with a fraudulent antique. Nevertheless, I thought it important to share some information from an article recently published in a UK paper.

Before I proceed, I must ask that people refrain from posting any links to specific Ebay auctions here, as it could compromise myArmoury.

According to an investigation done by an undercover reporter for the Sunday Times, "customers of the internet auction site Ebay are being defrauded by unscrupulous dealers who secretly bid up the price of items to boost profits." This practice is known as shill bidding. Officially, it's illegal, and anyone caught shill bidding faces expulsion from Ebay. In practice, however, many seller seem to ignore the rule with impunity.

Shill bidding is typically occurs on items with no reserve. Buyers are attracted to bid on these items since there is no minimum sale price for the item, and it seems that they have a possibility of getting a good deal. To prevent the item from selling at a cheap price, sellers will bid on their own items, either through creating a fake Ebay account- or, and this is the smarter method- by calling up a friend and asking them to put a certain amount of money on the item. If it turns out that the seller or their friend is the highest bidder on the item, the seller can put the item up for reauction at a later date. If a buyer is still the high bidder, the seller ends up making much more money on the item than they would have without the shill bid. Adding insult to injury, if the seller or their friend wins the auction, they typically leave positive feedback, which can help to mitigate the effects of negative feedback acquired from legitimate buyers.

Of course, it goes without saying that those sellers who deal with antiques, whether authentic or fraudulent, have a particularly strong reason for shill bidding. The Times actually contacted Eftis Paraskevaides, Ebay Titanium Powerseller, with an undercover reporter who posed as someone looking to sell items from a relatives estate through Ebay. "When the reporter asked whether [Eftis] arranged for associates to bid on his own items, he replied: "Well, if I put something really expensive [up for sale] and I was concerned that it was going for nothing, I would phone a friend of mine, even a client of mine who buys from me, and say: For Christ's sake, I sell you 100 worth of items a week...just put two grand on it, will you?"

The reporter asked if Eftis could guarantee him a minimum price on antiques from the estate sold on Ebay. Eftis replied: "Leave it to me [laughs]. Don't call it shill bidding. Then I won't be accused of shill bidding. Yes. I mean- I've got people". Later on, Eftis admits that despite the fact that shill bidding is illegal, it's rampant in Ebay.

As a result of this article, Ebay launched an investigation into Eftis, and you'll note that currently he has no items for sale on Ebay.

So please people, next time you consider bidding on an item in Ebay because it's a good deal, remember that you're probably going to be defrauded into paying more money by a seller who engages in shill bidding. It's just not worth it.

Quotations from The Sunday Times, Scotland, January 28, 2006.
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Feb, 2007 8:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This has been discussed here: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=9077
Happy

ChadA

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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Wed 07 Feb, 2007 7:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chad Arnow wrote:
This has been discussed here: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=9077


Ack. Had I actually written the article on the 28th as I was originally planning, it would not have been a duplicate. Ah well.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Feb, 2007 7:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:
Chad Arnow wrote:
This has been discussed here: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=9077


Ack. Had I actually written the article on the 28th as I was originally planning, it would not have been a duplicate. Ah well.


I've gone ahead and merged the topics.

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