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dstorm

Describing items correctly.

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dstorm

Hello all stamp sellers

And should Cuan have the time to read this, to you as well! We might need your permission to go ahead with this.

We have spoken before about an “Ethics Committee”. I am by no means trying to open up this debate again.

I have been watching the Stamp Listings on BidorBuy and especially the Wednesday Crazy Auction listings for the last few months. On tomorrow nights auction for instance (22 April) there are as usual, some brilliant items up for sale. Yet, as before, there are some items totally misdescribed. Once again, some buyers will get hurt, not knowing it at all.

For instance, there are amongst others, two items, listed as catalogued at R3 000-00 and R3 200-00, that are not what they seem to be - they are not worth more than R100-00 each. Looking at the track record of the two sellers in question, it is evident that they most probably made honest mistakes. (To admin – please do not penalise me for this paragraph. I will resign from BidorBuy (a good source of income) if the items mentioned ever get a PFSA certificate).

Would it at all be possible to form an informal voluntarily circle, where we support each other by pointing out possible wrong descriptions. Almost all of us (if not all of us) sometimes list items which we are not experts on - we all make mistakes. By joining in, each seller will agree to accept constructive criticism from sellers and buyer alike, without taking it personally. And then amend any possible wrong descriptions. Perhaps and very hopefully, we could mention in our listings that we subscribe to this circle. We will of course invite as many as possible Stamp Sellers to join in.

By the above I mean that we will not contact / attack / harass sellers who choose not to subscribe to this circle.

I really believe that the more sellers join this, the better it would be for each and every buyer and seller. There are still many, many strong buyers and sellers in the RSA who still see the BidorBuy Stamp Section as inferior to that of other sites.

And the more inexperienced buyers will know that they are buying from a collective pool of knowledge.

Please give me your thoughts on this.

Regards

Jacques

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alloway65

Good Post Jacques,

Something similar was done on the Gemsrone Forum over a year ago....it works quite well to a point....but most of the gemstones sold by some of the largest sellers are still rubbish, a lot with overstated values and confusing specs! New buyers are in the main the ones that are duped!

You have my full support for what it is worth.

Have a good voting day.

Very cold in Jhb today.

Regards

David.

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kennyn

Hello JAacques

100% agree with you.The range and quality of product offered has improved out of all proportion recently,but there are still some annoying misdescriptions.

Your proposal of a friendly,constructive circle would go a long way to alleviate this

See you Saturday,got a little something from Malmesbury for you

Kind Regards

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dstorm

Thanks Kenny

Bringing me an ex (hometown) girlfriend?

Regards

Jacques

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kennyn

Hi Jacques

Hometown girlfriend it is.That is if you like your woman a bit dirty,worn around the edges,socked on the nose with a smudge,stuck down(as opposed to stuck up) and more importantly around 125 years old.

Whatever lights your candle baby!

Kind Regards

Kenny

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dstorm

Well I think I walked straight into this one….

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librashares

Hi Jacques,

I think this is a marvellous idea, and the American Philatelic Society has something similar, in that members can question a description via a moderator. I have often raised a comment in the form of a question, which is harmless if I am wrong, and frequently encourages the seller to re-look at his description so as not to mislead innocent buyers.

If we could use adjectives such as well designed, topical, attractive, inexpensive, uncommon etc....

and less of scarce, rare, even unique. Market value is a little more difficult- what a similar item has changed hands for in the previous 6 to 12 months is usually a good indication, except of course in the case of Motlanthe- will these now be withdrawn to make way for the Fourth president since the new constitution??????? This may yet turn out to be a short lived issue!, but it will still not be scarce, except maybe those few used during the short time from the official release to the end of his term of office.............;)

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seahorsefanatic

Hi Jacques

 

I must also add my support to your posting out of frustration at the flagrant misuse of descriptions especially regarding condition and value. We all make errors regarding a certain shade, perforation, paper and the like but errors regarding condition and value is inexcusable. Recently there was a GB collection reputed to be catalogued at about R110,000 when the condition of what was being offered was nowhere near the catalogue value. Another favourite of mine is the use of the term " superb ". Those sellers are quick to quote values but fail to read the grading provided by all catalogues which has been used by our hobby for many years.

 

I think a forum where sellers have an input as well as buyers will be informative and of value to us all. I will be starting to sell collections and accumulations on BoB in the near future and would welcome constructive criticism at any time even if expressed with humour. Ultimately the market will decide and the track record of each seller will seperate the good from the bad.

 

The old adage applies: You can spend years building a reputation and one day destroying it.

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Badajoz

My 2c worth: every BoB category that has a specialist collector focus would benefit from an advisory page, pointing the new user to what constitutes value, and how it is adjudged. As far as stamps go, it would not be difficult for one of the many experts on this forum to write a short document on the importance of condition, and the elements by which it is assessed - what makes a "fine" item, what makes a "superb" item, and what makes a poor one, as well as the relationship between market value and catalog value. That document could form the basis of a "sticky" thread on this forum, and sellers who are concerned about this matter could include a link to it in their listings.

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dstorm

Hello Badajoz

Thanks for you reply.

However, this is not so simple. What if the seller does not know that he is misdescribing an item?

For instance, there is a Bechuanaland lot on this week’s Crazy Auction that is supposedly catalogued at R1 635-00, described a Superb Used. Sounds brilliant and the stamps are in fact in Superb Condition. But at least two of the three stamps are CTO! (Cancelled To Order). The value in the catalogue is for postally used stamps and not for CTO!

Once again some trusting buyer will get hurt without knowing it.

I only mention this lot because it falls in my area of expertise.

I feel that ACTIVE (real time) participation is the way to go.

I am posting the above because I am passionate about stamps, especially dealing in stamps!

Regards

Jacques

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dstorm

Hello David

 

We all make errors regarding a certain shade, perforation, paper and the like

 

This is exactly what we should “stamp” out. We all make mistakes, but we should not! At the stamp fairs we always have a pool of wisdom around us – dealing is so much easier.

Regards

Jacques

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korrie

Hi Jacques

Further to your comments regarding CTO

Several months ago I queried a seller regarding stamps from North Borneo/Labuan

Sellers starting statement starting as stamps inherited and asked a friend to evaluate

CV 1585 GB Pounds = R 23775

Starting bid R 4800 if I remember right

I asked the seller to check with the friend to check regarding CTO values

Seller did reply that he/she will check

Since then my question and the answer seems to have fallen off

Even not on my questions answered

The item is still there under colonial Britain if you care to check Priority listing "nogal"

But at R 1900.00

My Evaluation not more that 50 Pounds if CTO

 

Regards

Korrie

 

PS two similar stamps were on auction this wednesday

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Badajoz

Jacques - I was trying to offer a mechanism around which your idea of an unofficial committee could form organically. If you have a specific, "sticky" thread, devoted to the issue of judging quality (and spotting misdescriptions) then you have a basis around which an informal ethics committee forms, without having to go through a process of sanctioning its existence. Every buyer or seller who is willing to contribute his or her expertise to that thread is, by default, participating in that committee. Every seller who is willing to link to it is, by default, inviting others to comment on his or her descriptions of items.

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gabriel 1

You can all count me in.

 

Regards

Gabriel1

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dstorm

Hello Badajoz

I fully agree with you. We should and I will in future follow your advice on this. I think that Gabriel1’s posts on Condition and also Perforation should have been done in the way that you suggested.

But I still think that we should invite each an every seller personally to join in.

Regards

Jacques

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Badajoz

My other 2c worth. The Great Britain 1883/84 "Lilac and Green" issue is notorious for its colour lability. This issue was printed in inks that are water-fugitive, especially the "dull green" values. Exposure to water - for example, through soaking - turns a dull green stamp into a pale, washed-out green. It also destroys its value. In spite of this, you often see such damaged items offered on Bid or Buy, described as "fine" or "superb". One seller is even trying to sell some items that look distinctly washed out, at starting prices in *excess* of what their catalog value would be if they really were "superb".

 

Water-fugitive inks are also used in green head plates of the 1887-1900 "Jubilee" issue, with the same consequence - washed-out ink = valueless stamp.

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kennyn

Hi Badajoz

100% correct.In all my time I have seen very few examples of these stamps in the true dull green colour(probably 1 per 100),hence the high catalogue value given by Gibbons.

The same goes for the Jubilee issue and thats again why the catalogue value seems so high for which are common stamps.

Also affected was the Edward V11 issue where the 4d and the 1/- are rarely found with the correct colour.The green in this case is an extremely deep bright green and again the majority on the market are poor faded examples.

Kind Regards

Kenny

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