What is Provenance?

What is Provenance?

Most people start with the idea that an autograph is authentic and only look further if they are suspicious. This is backwards. You should begin with the premise that an autograph is not authentic and make it prove itself.  In assessing this proof, it’s important to disregard representations of sellers and ignore the sales pitches. Only autographs that can prove themselves outside the seller claims should you be comfortable acquiring.

As for provenance: Look at the first six letters; they spell ‘PROVEN’. Provenance means just that – proving where the autograph came from. In fact, this is very often the most important factor in authenticating an autograph. Knowing that a letter came from a reliable collection or dealer, and that it has an identifiable history, can be crucial to establishing a level of comfort.

What do I need to know about the COA?

The most frequent question potential memorabilia customers ask is, “Does it come with a certificate of authenticity (COA)”? The simple answer is, of course, “yes” and that’s good enough most of the time for collectors. However, people are asking the wrong question.

Potential customers are rightly concerned about buying a fake autographs. They believe that receiving a certificate of authenticity is their best defence. Unfortunately, the countless fraudsters selling fake autographs are aware of this common misconception and make sure their COA looks nice to go along with the fake autograph they’re selling. Any criminal who knowingly sells fake autographs is not going to be deterred by having to include a COA.

In the USA state of California back in the 1990’s a law was passed called the Civil Code Section 1739.7 and the law’s intentions were good, but of course the COA was the main point of emphasis. Unfortunately, the law has had little or no effect on reducing the number of fake autographs on the market.

eBay initially tried to attack the problem in the same manner, by requiring autograph sellers to state who issued the COA in their item descriptions. This also failed to do much of anything, and to eBay’s credit, their current autograph policy now states that COAs are “only as valuable as the reputation of the issuing party”.  That’s the main point right there. Potential customers should not be asking whether or not the autographed item comes with a COA.  They can ask but a fraudulent autograph dealer will almost always answer “YES”.

Potential customers should be asking about the background, business practices, experience, history and reputation of the seller.

(portions of article taken from autographsforsaledotcom)

Muhammad Ali signatures – Be sure you have the Real McCoy

Muhammad Ali has signed 1000’s of items through his lifetime. Be sure you get what you’ve paid for when purchasing memorabilia. If you’re looking for a third party examination of your Ali collectable, visit the Australian Memorabilia Association at www.amaonline.com.au

The Australian Memorabilia Association launches new site

The Australian Memorabilia Association is proud to announce the launch of the new website.  The site has been developed to be both user friendly with simple navigation for collectors and memorabilia enthusiasts worldwide.

The initial AMA website was launched in 2010 by a group of dealers and collectors and now the site offers two new services to the memorabilia industry with ‘Authenticate My Autograph’ and ‘Valuations’.  These services are provided by several memorabilia experts with many years of experience in the industry.

Authentication now gives collectors a professional opinion on their items and if deemed authentic, an official Certificate of Authenticity is provided along with inclusion onto the AMA database. Valuations assist collectors with their collectables by providing a ‘written valuation’ for insurance or resale purposes.  The site also lists Australian Memorabilia Association associated retailers so that collectors can be confident when purchasing products from them.

This website illustrates a commitment to the memorabilia industry by providing information to the autograph collector and furthermore ensures the integrity of the industry by having a central point of reference for both retailers and collectors.