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eBay UK Authenticating Watches


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Sorry if this has been commented on before, but eBay UK are starting to authenticate any watch sales over £2000.

eBay will be examining and authentciating the watches before they're sent to the purchaser.

They're also testing the waterproofing if it's mentioned in the sale description.

It seems that they're setting themselves up as the 'go to' place for watch purchases.

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53 minutes ago, Colin Belfast said:

Sorry if this has been commented on before, but eBay UK are starting to authenticate any watch sales over £2000.

eBay will be examining and authentciating the watches before they're sent to the purchaser.

They're also testing the waterproofing if it's mentioned in the sale description.

It seems that they're setting themselves up as the 'go to' place for watch purchases.

I think I read they did it with Trainers first.

My first thought was "am I the only one who had no idea that trainer collecting was anything like watch collecting!"?

 

Edited by Bricey
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2 hours ago, Bricey said:

I think I read they did it with Trainers first.

My first thought was "am I the only one who had no idea that trainer collecting was anything like watch collecting!"?

 

It’s far nerdier than watch collecting!

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eBay contacted me last week asking if I would like to sell with them now they had introduced this authentication program.  It does provide some back up to sellers - if the watch worked for example when they inspected it then the buyer cannot claim it doesn't work after removing parts.  But it adds time, and what happens if the watch is damaged between eBay and the seller?  The buyer can still return the watch under the distance selling rules if bought from a dealer, even if do inspect it. And how far does the inspection go? Full timegrapher results? bracelet links counted?  Sounded like a host of potential problems to me.

My biggest issue with eBay has always been the higher than average percentage of scammers.  It's not as bad as say Facebook marketplace,  but I wouldn't buy from there either. 

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I think this is one of those "wait and see" moments. I've stopped using eBay, for buying and selling, and it would take a massive shift in policy to tempt me back. Personally I think they are implementing schemes like this because they know they're losing business. I still have one saved search (specific motorcycle), and there are very few that are correct, and most are above £3K, and usually payment "cash on collection" .

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It seems like a good idea in principle. I think it is also a response to try and stop big sellers who have websites too, pricing things higher on ebay due to the fees and people just funelling to their website. Now at least it looks like ebay is justifying the higher price with an authentication service.

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So if someone flips a new or nearly new Rolex Sub (or similar) watch on eBay the authentication service is going to open the watch to check that the movement is legit and are they then going to replace the seals with generic ones, if anything?  If they mess it up and the watch leaks where does the buck stop?  Does the buyer even know who performed the authentication service?  Surely the seller cannot be held responsible.  And Rolex would rightly have no interest in the matter. 

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2 hours ago, rhaythorne said:

So if someone flips a new or nearly new Rolex Sub (or similar) watch on eBay the authentication service is going to open the watch to check that the movement is legit and are they then going to replace the seals with generic ones, if anything?  If they mess it up and the watch leaks where does the buck stop?  Does the buyer even know who performed the authentication service?  Surely the seller cannot be held responsible.  And Rolex would rightly have no interest in the matter. 

Thats a really good point. Does the authentication service potentially have access to sales databases to run the serial numbers through to avoid opening a new watch? Like you say it sounds like a liability nightmare and who wants ebay's "experts" popping open their new Sub!

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7 minutes ago, spinynorman said:

They'll outsource it. My money's on Watch Lab.

:whistle:

Im going to send them an email, because I often get my watches serviced before i sell them so they come with a warranty. But im sure that warranty will be invalidated if someone else opens up the watch. I wonder if eBay / their partner will honour or match the warranty (doubt it)

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5 hours ago, Daveyboyz said:

Go in a shop, try it on and of you like it buy it online from the reference.

I know it must drive retailers mad but any serious purchase we must be familiar with the model.

Absolutely. I know how that all works. The prospect of a £2k watch for me is alien to be honest.

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Quite a lot of info on here:

https://pages.ebay.co.uk/authenticity-guarantee-watches/

It doesnt actually sound like they open it up and inspect the movement. And it says things like "The authenticator will thoroughly inspect and verify your item’s authenticity and accuracy against the item listing" which seems like sneaky wording and not quite the same as confirming if the watch is genuine.

1 minute ago, JRParker said:

Quite a lot of info on here:

https://pages.ebay.co.uk/authenticity-guarantee-watches/

It doesnt actually sound like they open it up and inspect the movement. And it says things like "The authenticator will thoroughly inspect and verify your item’s authenticity and accuracy against the item listing" which seems like sneaky wording and not quite the same as confirming if the watch is genuine.

"Multi-point inspection:
Independent authenticators verify multiple inspection points, including the crown, bezel, dial, case, clasp/buckle, hands, end links, and reference number."

Doesnt mention the movement.

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20 hours ago, Bricey said:

I think I read they did it with Trainers first.

My first thought was "am I the only one who had no idea that trainer collecting was anything like watch collecting!"?

 

Trainer collecting is my second weakness after watches and let me tell you it is seriously big business.  There is a website called Stock X where people can buy, sell or bid on trainers. The thing is all of the trainers have never been worn, wear them and they lose so much value.

Stock X and now Ebay are the go between for buyers and sellers and yes, they check the products are real and not fake.

The Rolex of the trainer world is Air Jordan 1's followed by Yeezy's and like watches, trainers costing £150 can easily double or triple in value the day after release on the grey market. But you don't have to get into bed with an AD, popular new trainers are the subject of lotteries and draws, you have as much chance as the next person. 

The other difference is those making the money from buying at retail and then flipping tend to be under 30; it's a young person's game.

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12 minutes ago, Monaque said:

There's no way I would spend that much money on a watch without actually handling it, trying it on, etc. And certainly not from ebay.

 

I've heard that about trainers, big business, they can go for silly money.

i Just bought my Rolex GMT from a seller in Georgia and it went really well 

ok i as soon as it arrived took my watch to local specialist 30 years experience and  Rolex trained

for a once over which i got round by just asked him to do a  insurance letter / inspection  for me which cost £89 pounds 

knowing he would open it but as it was vintage that did not bother me 

knowing that would confirm everything was 100 % 

so in total £7k but with ebay i knew i would get money back so was not bothered 

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20 minutes ago, norfolkngood said:

i Just bought my Rolex GMT from a seller in Georgia and it went really well 

ok i as soon as it arrived took my watch to local specialist 30 years experience and  Rolex trained

for a once over which i got round by just asked him to do a  insurance letter / inspection  for me which cost £89 pounds 

knowing he would open it but as it was vintage that did not bother me 

knowing that would confirm everything was 100 % 

so in total £7k but with ebay i knew i would get money back so was not bothered 

Interesting, but for me, I couldn't imagine spending that kind of money. I guess there are safeguards, and now more so. But, not for me.

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