Welcome to Sports Memorabilia Tips. While this site is meant for the serious collector, it doesn't mean that you have to have millions invested in sports memorabilia. For us, a serious collector is someone who is interested and would like to become more knowledgeable in authenticated autographed sports memorabilia and collectibles. Regardless if you're a serious collector or looking to buy a gift for one, you'll find great information about authentic sports memorabilia here. In the coming months, we'll be featuring reviews of web sites and companies, general information about products from display cases to photo mints and tips for collectors.
The Importance of Authentication
So why is sports memorabilia authentication so important? The easy answer is simply to verify that the money you're investing in your particular bit of sports history is actually the "real deal". Whether you're buying from a friend or from an online auction business like ebay, it's nice to know that there is some proof that the ink on the item is actually from a pen in the athlete's hand. With the value of many pieces of sports memorabilia going for thousands of dollars, scam and fraud artists look to make a quick buck but preying on the gullible.
Fraud is a huge concern and with more and more people becoming "Internet-Savvy," the chances of you encountering a scam artist only go up. According to PSA-DNA, the industry's leading authenticator of autographs, roughly two-thirds of Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan were FRAUD.
Would you buy at a store if you knew 8 of 12 eggs in a carton would be rotten? Neither would we.
We suggest that if you are buying product, make sure that it comes with a Certificate of Authenticity (COA). Not just any COA, but one from a reputable company like Upper Deck, Steiner Sports, Schwartz Sports, Highland Mint, or Mounted Memories. There are certainly others, but these are some of the key names to look for. Because athletes often charge for their signature, these large companies have the deep pockets to get a number of items signed by that athlete and then they can provide proof of that signature. A handwritten COA from a business with no ties to these larger companies may not be providing you with the real goods. And especially for you ebay buyers...remember that good feedback does NOT equal authentic signatures. It just means that the seller has provided good service.