Scammers will have one more obstacle to overcome if they want to try and pass off fraudulent Pokémon cards now. Online auction house eBay has decided to implement a mandatory authentication system for the sale of ungraded trading cards, as long as the value of the purchase is over $750.00. The hope is to create a better sense of trust and security in purchases as the frequency and value of trading card purchases has risen during the pandemic.
It’s probably not a coincidence that this policy has come into play not long after Logan Paul spent $3.5 million for an unauthenticated fake box of Pokémon booster cards. We previously reported on how suspicious the entire deal was. Paul went public with the debacle and it’s hard not to imagine that the shockwaves from that are influencing this decision.
When it comes to authenticating high-price items, sources have reported eBay already has a system in place for certain goods already. Previously, this system wasn’t implemented for sports trading cards or collectible trading card games like Pokémon. Given how absurdly the market has exploded when it comes to these particular items, safeguards had to be put in place to ensure buyer confidence.
Now, when a person makes a purchase of these items for over $750.00, the product is no longer sent directly from the seller to the buyer. Instead, the buyer has to ship the product to an eBay approved authentication center.
While the virtual auction house doesn’t say who works at these centers aside from calling them, “leading industry experts,” allegedly they can confirm the condition and authenticity of the card and then sent it along to the buyer. This comes at no increased cost to either party though it obviously slows the transaction process down slightly. If the item does not pass the verification process, the buyer is refunded their money and the item is returned to the seller.
If there’s a market for something, there’s always going to be people who want to take advantage of that market however they can. While this still doesn’t protect people who are looking for purchases under the $750 threshold, it does still provide some assurance to serious collectors who are going for high buck items.
Is a collectible Pokémon card honestly worth over $750 to someone? Well, I guess it depends on how badly someone really wants that shiny Charizard. Either way, now there’s one less way of deriving the joy of schadenfreude from one of the Paul brothers; and if there’s one great tragedy to come out of this, that’s the one.