Ebay Representatives Audrey Zwibelman & Gordon Cheng Meet With Dealers/Sellers At 2018 National Sports Collectors Convention

Below is a link to Rich Mueller's "Sports Collectors Daily" from August 5th, 2018.

Rich, by the way, does a great job of posting hobby-related news and I highly recommend subscribing (doesn't cost a penny) to his daily column.

I want to thank Rich for posting the below.


Quoting Ebay representative Audrey Zwibelman "“Authentication at eBay in general,  and not just this category, is near and dear to our hearts,” she said. “It’s a huge priority for us.” 

Is that why, Audrey, you and Ebay, in my opinion, have allowed and enabled the "Florida" forgeries and other obvious garbage to flood Ebay over the last twenty years, which in turn makes it difficult for dealers/collectors to sell their authentic items!!!

As a matter of fact, from my observations over the last few years, Ebay no longer enforces their own "Banned COA List."

Then you go on to say that you want collectors/dealers on Ebay to take advantage of the "Report A Listing" option.

And according to Audrey, "Ebay has a security team which reviews (and in my opinion ignores) those reports on a daily basis."

Is she (Audrey Zwibelman) serious!!!

Since the EMR Team was terminated years ago, I must have "Reported" hundreds upon hundreds of auctions (forgeries) and they simply get ignored.

And to top it off, I would have at least a half-dozen of my collector friends "Report" the same auctions and not one has ever been removed!!!

Not one!!!

So what she (Audrey Zwibelman) says is bogus, in my opinion.

Topic 2:

I'm not sure which (Audrey Zwibelman or Gordon Cheng) genius said this, but they commented on giving "tips for sellers."

They said "One of those that seems basic but often results in missed opportunities for sellers is making sure you’re ahead of the curve when it comes to selling items of specific players and hot teams.  The resulting interest on eBay often comes from beyond the realm of avid collectors. It’s true of any collectibles market.  The most important things are stay on top of pop culture and by that I mean current trends and events,” Cheng suggested.  “If a player is really hot, like Shohei Ohtani this year or Aaron Judge last year, just make sure you stock up on their items and have plenty of them to sell."

Talk about genius.  Geez.

If we all knew next year's hot player(s) or item,  we would all be rich buying them low and selling high.

The irony being, Ebay wants all us to be "ahead of the curve" on "loading up on next year's hot items," while Ebay "remains behind the curve when it comes to "Authentication at Ebay in general."

I'll be polite when I write "Ebay's facade is transparent."

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Comment by Brian on August 13, 2018 at 12:56pm

Really? I don't remember that. I remember they allowed any type of certificate which was a joke.

Comment by Anthony Bautista on August 13, 2018 at 1:01pm

Yeah they pulled down honest sellers stuff and told you to get it authenticated

Comment by Rick Meyer on August 13, 2018 at 1:04pm

Those three TPA’s are a big part of the problem. They stamp their name on a forgery and the hobby is stuck with it forever.

Look at some of the recent work by Beckett and Press Pass. The TPA’s are now in the pockets of the high volume dealer. It’s a very competitive market in the authenticating world so the autographs no longer speak for themselves. These TPA’s do a good job authenticating they would actually lose money. These sellers will move on to the next guy.

Comment by Steve Zarelli on August 13, 2018 at 1:06pm

Forcing sellers to use a third-party service seems pretty draconian. And not fair to the vast majority of eBay sellers who are honest and selling good product.  It would be unreasonable to force sellers to use a third-party authenticator… Especially for low value autographs. 

My sense is you could target around 50 - 100 sellers on eBay and wipe out a high percentage of the fakes sold on eBay.  It’s the high volume peddlers of mass produced fakes who are destroying the hobby. Certainly some small fish will slip through the nets, but it would make a huge difference just to take out the high volume scammers. 

Comment by Richard S. Simon on August 13, 2018 at 1:08pm


You are totally correct but we know ebay won't remove the high volume crooks. How can we make them do that. How can we make them see that the hobby is being badly hurt by their lack of action?

Comment by Steve Zarelli on August 13, 2018 at 1:13pm

Autographs are such a tiny portion of overall eBay sales, I find it hard to believe that taking out the scammers makes more than a rounding difference in their balance sheet.

Unless, there are certain category managers whose performance is based upon the sales in the categories that they manage. That would be the person possibly responsible… I highly doubt it’s a directive coming from eBay at a high level. 

Comment by Richard S. Simon on August 13, 2018 at 1:21pm

Autographs are not the only ebay problem. Knock offs on brand name products and probably all other collectible categories are problematic.  When you add those categories up I am sure there is a general policy on ebay to not work very hard to police any category.

Comment by Anthony Bautista on August 13, 2018 at 1:28pm

Yes, so many patented items like apple chargers and such are sold by chinese sellers on ebay and have destroyed the us economy and market. Look at the market for jerseys. Anything that people buy, there will be knockoffs soon. 

Comment by Scott Paul on August 13, 2018 at 2:29pm
Brian I understand where you are coming from but the problem remains that would mean many smaller ticket items would never get sold. It would hurt small time sellers. There is also the fact that many of us are uncomfortable with the major TPA's for their unwillingness to own up their past mistakes. So while it is a noble idea I am afraid in practice it would be a disaster. Personally I do not buy much anymore but never buy a TPA certified if I can help it. Another problem is that there are already some fake TPA stamps out there that would increase the demand for those. As with most of life's problems sadly I see no easy answer to any of this.
Comment by Brian on August 13, 2018 at 6:25pm

I see your point Scott. It’s just ashame because I love the hobby and it’s so frustrating for us as collectors. These scam artists wreck our hobby and force people out of collecting because of this when they work hard for their money. Guess it’s everywhere but it’s tough for people like me who can never meet a celebrity but want their graph but don’t know who to trust sometimes . Good thing for this site I guess lol we need to stick together to keep the hobby alive


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