Pay Pal

This article about Pay Pal requiring a buyer to destroy an item he thought was counterfeit rather than returning it occurred in the violin collecting field but has interest for stamp collectors. Counterfeits are a problem in every collector field but raise many interesting issues in philately. First, philately has counterfeits that were created to defraud collectors. These should be destroyed or at least marked indelibly when they are identified. But philately also has reprints, sometimes official, sometimes clandestine, which have legitimate status as collectibles. And we have postal forgeries-counterfeits but counterfeits that were made to defraud the post and not collectors. In many ways, postal forgeries are among the most interesting of all philatelic collectibles especially if they are legitimately used to defraud the post. And then how about repairs and regumming which add a counterfeit layer to a genuine collectible? Certainly there has been a lack of policing in all of the collectible fields. But requiring buyers to destroy items which they deem forgeries, even with third party confirmation, seems to be too strong a solution for the problem.

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