A friend of mine who is new to ebaY bid on and bought an authentic VDO head shot with the authentic resume attached…or so she thought.
My friend bid with ebaY seller picture_this! (Rising Star Photos of Issaquah, Washington, USA) on my recommendation because I have dealt with this seller for many years and *never* in a million years did I think this seller would do something as incredibly low as to send an AUTHENTIC photo with a PHOTOCOPIED resume (pictured here at the Vault, but soon to be sent back along with the photo for a refund) and then try to weasel out of the complaint of receipt of goods that are less than 100% authentic.
The seller’s pathetic excuses?
“We always scan the resumes and include “a copy” like
we say in our auction. That way we can share the information with more people who are fans.”
In other words this really means ‘we can make photocopies of authentic original resumes, use dubiously vague text in our auctions and make more money for as long as there are clueless VDO fans’
The seller adds:
“We don’t say “an original resume is included” we say “a copy of the resume is included”. The resume part is just an extra step we’ve been taking to provide a little something else to fans. We’ve had no other complaints so far.”
So I guess this means that when the seller runs out of authentic vintage headshots, it will also be okay for the seller to take scans of those and sell them on ebaY as (authentic implied) ‘copies’ of VDO’s head shot to uneducated fans. And then it will be okay to sell printed out ‘copies’ of wire images without telling the wire service image providers, and so on and so on…
To this line of rationalization I say “Bullshit”.
Either you sell 100% authentic memorabilia or you don’t. I am saddened to report that Rising Star Photos no longer sells 100% authentic memorabilia but is passing off photocopies just to make a few extra bucks.
Once it’s okay to list photocopies under the vague header “copy”, it’s okay to sell anything (including 12th generation images appropriated from other people’s websites). This is what hurts the hobby, the fuzzy ethics of sellers that eventually evolve into ‘anything that makes money for me is okay’.
I am very sorely disappointed in this seller who knows much better. It’s not just because my friend was going to give me the authentic original resume for the Vault (and I had informed this seller many years ago that I would be interested in obtaining an authentic original VDO resume for my own collection, so the seller knew of its potential value to a VDO ephemera collector), but largely because this seller has stellar feedback from years of doing the right thing and now is risking its reputation over a cheesy photocopy.
You can now kiss your reputation amongst VDO fans buh-bye, picture_this! And among any other fans who encounter this blog post and might be considering bidding on your photo and resume auctions
Consider picture_this! a.k.a. Rising Star Photos of Issaquah, Washington, USA at the very top of my dishonor roll of far less than ethical trustworthy sellers of legitimate movie and TV memorabilia. For now if you’re lucky you can probably at least get an authentic VDO (or other celebrity) head shot from picture_this!, but why take the chance?!
By the way I have given my friend some of my surplus VDO photos to make up for her bad experience. Her heart was in the right place and I am in full metal rant mode over this because I encouraged her to bid and be disappointed by yet another convert to sleazy practices at FeeBay. To her I say ‘mea culpa’ and I’m sorry for the bad experience.
Music ‘Dum Dum Girl’ by Talk Talk (which is what I feel like for encouraging my friend to patronize this seller)