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View Full Version : OPINIONS- Ask the authenticators


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01-05-2005, 08:17 PM
Posted By: <b>Eric</b><p>SCD has said they're going to grill the authenticators. We know they're not going to write this piece the way it should be written (because all SCD does is talk about all of the great services they offer.) I'm just wondering what you folks would ask and who you would want featured in the story, in a perfect world.<br /><br />Second question- why don't auction houses offer an archive photo in the catalog showing the item they are selling in game action. <br />If there was a photo of the Cobb Bat being auctioned, next to a stock photo of Cobb using a decal bat, wouldn't that clear a lot of things up?<br />When I have had problems with some of the big industry authenticators, they hide behind the "we have proof in archive photos" but don't seem to ever produce those photos.<br />(I'm sure you legal guys will tell me the licensing fees on stock photos would be too costly to offer this, but maybe on high end items it's necessary)

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01-05-2005, 08:56 PM
Posted By: <b>hankron</b><p>With movie worn or used items, the top auction houses typically have an image of the item in use and often give the winner a photo of the item in use. This is easier done with movie items as they are by definition captured on film.

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01-05-2005, 08:56 PM
Posted By: <b>Dan B</b><p>Well, I think a lot of people here would like to ask Dave Bushing and the mysterious Dan Knoll some questions about how they authenticated the DiMaggio streak bat. I would also like to ask them about conflicts of interest.<br /><br />As for the Cobb bat, I think someone from the auction house that was selling it put a photo up here that supposedly shows Cobb using a decal bat, but it looked inconclusive to me. I thought they said they were going to post a clearer photo, but if they did I never saw it.<br /><br />At this point I don't care what they say as I have already made my mind up on them after learning of the Ichiro bat and then doing my own homework on the DiMaggio bat. Not to mention the numerous mistakes they have made in dating gloves....especially gloves they happen to own.<br /><br />Dan

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01-05-2005, 09:00 PM
Posted By: <b>Eric</b><p>even if it is not the a photo of the actual item being used, one that shows it's the proper style or model at least helps a bit. Any thoughts?<br /><br />Also- I use Corbis.com and Gettyimages.com to do my research. Are there other good sites?<br /><br />Eric

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01-06-2005, 01:11 PM
Posted By: <b>hankron</b><p>Eric, I agree that providing an image of an item in use is a nice idea-- even if it only shows the type of bat or whatever, and not the actual one.<br /><br />What these episodes show us is that collectors should be educated about the items they buy, and able able to make their own judgements of about the authenticity. Or they can seek out a second opinion when needed. If the educated collector, the auction house and the second opinion all agree on the authenticity, the collector is in good shape.

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01-06-2005, 01:16 PM
Posted By: <b>warshawlaw</b><p>Don't expect hard-hitting investigative journalism from the folks at SCD. You can safely assume that what you will see are public relations pieces touting the authenticators' credentials, experience and web addresses. No Mike Wallaces there...<br /><br />Personally, I'd like to see a "greatest hits" piece listing the worst **ck-ups of each authenticator and demanding an explanation of how it happened. I'd also like to see them challenged on their guarantees or lack of guarantees. If nothing else, it would be very entertaining.

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01-06-2005, 01:31 PM
Posted By: <b>hankron</b><p>It is significant to note that there are collectors who have raised the value of their works of art or memorabilia by doing futher research on the item. Often times they find more about the item, or can provide more details about the history and authenticity (such as a photo from Corbis). I once had an acting award that belonged to a deceased actor and when I got it I noticed on the back was a big sticker with a cataloging number. With research, the sticker showed that the item was once owned by a famous Hollywood museum and further research showed that all the museum's material was donated by the actors or directors themselves, their families or by the top movie and television studios. That's known as desirable provenance! <br /><br />The other story is I once sold an award given to Jackie Robinson from some rather obscure medical society in Platteville Wisconsin. About six months later the winner contacted me so he talk about the award. 'Uh oh,' I thought, 'I'm in big trouble.' Turns out the buyer was so intrigued by the award, never having an item like it before, that he contacted the medical society to see what he could find out. To make the story short, the society found and sent him a photograph of Jackie Robinson in Wisconsin being given the very award. The buyer wanted to tell me that, with the photo, it was his favorite piece of memorabilia. He was also surprised to find out that the presence of the photo likely about doubled it's financial value<br /><br />So, a collector doing his or her research before, during and after auction can have a variety of financial and non-financial rewards.

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01-06-2005, 04:16 PM
Posted By: <b>Scott</b><p>I really liked the posting on this board of Ty Cobb supposedly using a decal bat. What made me chuckle was how certain the sellers were that we could all easily spot the "decal" on the bat. It was obvious to me that the seller really believed it and that there was no attempt to deceive (IMO anyway), but that photo certainly left many of us scratching our heads.<br /><br />This just proved what I already knew: when someone really wants something to be so...in their owns minds it becomes so.