Not long ago contact was made with most of the high profile auction houses who offer autograph items, especially in sports. Not one of the auction houses is a member of PADAH.
They were asked why do they use the ABC type companies who claim to authentiate autographs.
Basically all said they know that all the high profile authentication companies "suck." This very same comment was made by the head of the autograph division of eBay. He was talking (in writing) about the ABC type authenticating companies eBay uses). The reason they use them is because many of their bidders have deep pockets. The bidders don't have time to educate themselves on the subject of collecting autographs, they just want a Certification of Autenticaion. Doesn't really matter which of the companies issued the certificate.
Every auction house has had the experience of discovering items they offered with certifciates have later been proven to be non authentic. Many times they are advised during the sale, items with certificates were wrongly mis-authenticated and a few still leave the item up for sale. Their deal is the authenticating company said it's real, not them. Fact is, many of the owners of the aution houses are more experienced at authenticating autographs then the wannabe companies who claim they can authenticate.
Problem here is that one east coast auction house told us that if they don't use a certain authenticating company then anything that later comes to them from that aution house will be certified as non genuine.
This is very similar to the autograph mafia, if you don't use us we'll break your winddows.
There seems to be an unlimited number of mis-authenticated autographs certified by all the comapnies who claim to be able to authenticate. Just one example is how many signed books have appered in aucion houses by Christy Mathewson.
Many years ago Ron Keurajian (award winning author and considered top autheticator of sports autographs) and I wrote an article about this very same limited edition book. Most who keep up with educating themselves about autogarphs are aware of this. Aution houses have been called when these books appear in their sale. Some still knowing or have been told the documented truth, still left the books in the sale. Many of these books have been sold by Kevin Keating and he was advisedd the signatures were signed by a secretary for Christy Mathewson. Even after KEATING WAS ADVISED HE CONTINUED TO PASS THESE BOOKS AS AUTHENTIC. Keating has been and still is called an "authenticator" on the PSA team.
We were told that he passes these books because he would have to give refunds for all the ones he sold and or authenticated as genuine in the past.
Either collectors have to spend more time educating themselves of the auction houses need to avoid using the ABC type authenticating companies and personally guarantee what they offer like most professional members of the well repected PADAH group.
Fewer professional autograph dealers NO LONGER have to issue a refund based on any mis-authenticated autograph from a ABC type company who claims to authenticate autographs.
Some good news that has come to light is that almost 75 professional autograph delers no longer have to accept a ABC type COA for a refund. So why pay for these worthless COA's when most dealers don't accept them?
Shortly, on this platform, you will read a common error made by these authenticating companies. Not only do they mis-authenticate autographs, these self proclaimed wannbe exprts don't even get the name of the autograph correct.
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