Flashback Product of the Week: 2005 eBay Live! Pop Culture Classic Listings

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From what I hear, the eBay Live! annual conference was a pretty big deal.  I personally never attended any of them though.  But reading up on them, it sounds like sellers were treated like kings at one time.  eBay would listen to sellers, and offer fun classes to attend.  eBay is still the main place to buy/sell stuff, but I think that sense of community has really been lost.  Yeah, the message boards are still there, but it just doesn’t seem like it use to be.  eBay tends to care more about the buyers now.

Over the years, eBay has slapped their logo on tons of merchandise.  They use to have a store, but that closed up years ago.  Some of their merchandise has become quite collectible.  During the eBay Live! conference they gave out huge amounts of stuff.  That includes their own trading cards.

There was a card set made for almost every single eBay Live! event.  Each one has it’s own uniqueness about it, but the set made in 2005 seems to stand out the most to me.  Both from a design standpoint and subject matter.  eBay was celebrating it’s 10th anniversary in 2005.  They decided to create a set that commemorated the most notable items put up for sale up until that point.  The set consists of (13) cards.  Card fronts feature an animated drawing of a specific item on foil card stock.  On the reverse side, you’ll find a write-up about that item.  The checklist includes the following cards:

  • Real Arkansas Civil War Dirt
  • Size 12 Wedding Dress/Gown
  • Early Blown Glass Cathedral Pickle Bottle
  • 2005 Jay Leno Harley Davidson
  • The Meaning of Life
  • Gulfstream II Business Jet
  • Kidney For Sale
  • Oldest Known Pair of Levis Jeans
  • Ghost Cane
  • Ten Years of Community and Commerce
  • Pierre Omidyar’s Broken Laser Pointer
  • Shoeless Joe’s Bat
  • Virgin Mary in Grilled Cheese

Shoeless Joe’s Bat refers to the famous “Black Betsy”.  It sold on August 7, 2001 for $577,610.  That was Joe Jackson’s main bat he used throughout his career.

These cards aren’t that difficult to find.  Ironically there usually is a good supply on eBay.  Its funny to think that eBay made cards.  But they did.

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“Pin-Up” of the Week: eBay Employee Baseball Pin

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Can you believe that eBay will turn twenty this year?  It started out as a small website called Auction Web, and has grown into the beast it is now.  eBay has changed a lot of things, including the sports memorabilia industry.  Its made “book” value completely meaningless when it comes to cards.  Items that were thought to be rare, now may not be so difficult to locate.

I’ve been using eBay since March of 2002.  The first time I used it was to sell a Barry Bonds autographed baseball.  It was something I had picked up at a charity auction years earlier, and didn’t really need anymore.  Needless to say, I was able to sell it despite having a generic COA and no picture for the auction listing.

eBay use to make a lot of pins.  Many came from their annual eBay Live! events.  I don’t think they even hold those anymore.  They use to have a merchandise store where you could purchase items with the eBay logo on it.  That has been closed for a while.  You would think that eBay would make some 20th anniversary stuff, but I don’t see that coming.

This pin was issued to eBay employees in 2000.  It was given to those employees that reached specific monthly performance goals.  You can usually find them for $10.00.

“Pin-Up” of the Week: eBay – 1995 A Community Is Born – 10th Anniversary Pin

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eBay is one of the major places to go for cards.  Sports card collecting would be pretty dull if it wasn’t around.  Thanks to eBay, book value means little to nothing in today’s hobby.  If you want to know the real value of a card, just look it up on eBay.

If you haven’t noticed yet, eBay unleashed their new logo this week.  They had been using the old one for years.  I kinda like it.

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Blog Bat Around: My $50,000 eBay Loot

Fifty-thousand dollars is a lot of money.  It could easily be spent on one card or a ton of cards.  If I had 50k to spend on eBay and only 15 minutes to use it I would make a few purchases, but I probably wouldn’t even come close to spending it all.  Instead I would use a portion to help better The Hobby by removing fake cards from circulation.

Lets begin with what I would purchase for my personal collection.  I would amass the most complete Harry Kalas collection anyone could ever obtain.  The first cards I would go after would be his 2004 & 2005 Upper Deck Sweet Spot autographs.  The base versions sell for around $90.00 a piece.  These would then be followed by all the various ink/stitch color variations Upper Deck came up with between the two Sweet Spot sets.  Kalas has a total of about 11 cards for collectors to find.  Besides some of the Sweet Spot autographs, his most rare autograph comes from 2004 Fleer Greats of the Game.  It would be the dual autograph of Schmidt and Kalas which is limited to only 25 copies.  I have never seen one up for sale, but if one did surface I’m sure it would hit $400.00+.  In addition to the Harry Kalas cards, I’d like to throw in an Alexander Cartwright cut signature too.  Specifically the one found in 2007 Donruss/Playoff National Treasures.

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I’m not that big of a vintage collector.  I usually prefer some of the more modern stuff.  With that being said, I would purchase some vintage cards.  I would like to add a Connie Mack 1887-90 Old Judge card to my collection.  Old Judge tobacco cards were some of the first mass produced baseball cards in history.  Being able to own any Old Judge card can be a cornerstone to a collection, but finding one of a HOF player is even better.  Depending on the condition, they can easily reach into the thousands.  Some of the other rare vintage cards I would add to my collection include a Cap Anson 1888 Goodwin Champions #2 and a Mike “King” Kelly 1887 Allen & Ginter tobacco insert.

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If I had the 50k today, I’d probably just stick with baseball stuff.  I might pick up a Jake Scott 2002 Topps Ring of Honor autograph though.  All in all, I’m estimating my loot would cost around $30,000 to $35,0000.  That means I could possibly have $15,000 to $20,000 let over.  Do you want to know what I’d do with that money?  I would purchase as many counterfeit cards I could find on eBay just to take them out of circulation.  I know handing money over to a forger sounds terrible, but at least the cards would be destroyed where no other uneducated collector find out down the road that great card they bought isn’t real.  It would even be better if an organization could be formed after this to help remove all fakes from the marketplace.  Perhaps after obtaining each counterfeit card, that seller could be banned from eBay for life.

1st Obak Cut Signature Pulled: Chuck Connors

I’ve been waiting for one of these to show up.  This is the first 2009 TRISTAR Obak Cut Signature to hit eBay.  Its of Chuck Connors and is serial numbered 1/1.  I didn’t realize that these were inserted as redemptions.  I guess they did that to protect the autograph.  Right now it can be yours for $200.00.  I’d like to see the Lena Blackburne and Emmett Ashford signatures from this set.  You don’t see many redemption cards in TRISTAR products.  I wonder what their turnaround time is like?

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Terrible Serial Number Scam

Serial numbering scammers are a pain in the you know what.  A few days ago I found a few collectors talking about this subject over on The Bench.  They uncovered a seller who has done probably one of the worst serial numbering jobs I’ve ever seen.  Take a look at these two basic Topps cards which seem to be “one of a kind”.

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When was the last time you saw cards from a basic Topps set contain serial numbers that look like this?  Probably never.  If cards like this are numbered at all, its usually done with very small font on the back.  You also don’t find many regular Topps cards with one of one’s being printing as “01/01”.  They usually don’t put zeros before the one.  Luckily only a few of them sold and not all.  The Dunn sold for the most and a couple others went for $5.00.  This is just another case of when buyer’s don’t quite know everything about what they are purchasing.  Be careful out there.

New eBay Purchase – Alexander Cartwright

eBay and the card blogosphere is addicted to the new Allen & Ginter.  It doesn’t matter if you hate it or love it, collectors are talking about it.  Last week I decided to browse eBay to see if there was anything being pulled from A&G that would go great in my collection.  I came across this Alexander Cartwright silk insert #’ed/10 and made the seller an offer.  I like to collect cards of older players/figures and thought this would fit in.  MLB recognizes Cartwright as the inventor of the game.  ’09 A&G has more cards of him than any other product I’ve seen.  He doesn’t have any relic cards and only has a few cut signatures.  This is one card that will stay in my collection forever.

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