Help support the WCHA Forums by making a tax-deductible donation!

My morning rant

Discussion in 'Scale and Miniature Canoe Models' started by Roger Young, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    MY MORNING RANT... Well, what do you do when you're a serious collector with a sizeable investment in a major gathering of antique/vintage sample canoes, and up pops on eBay something which is clearly a fake, and misleadingly advertised (one could even say fraudulently offered) as an Old Town salesman's sample from the 1920's? Here is the listing: http://www.ebay.com/…/Old-Town-Canoe-Co-Maine-…/371732040117? .... Now, I'm not only interested in my own collection; I also believe in helping others, in disseminating reliable information, in helping to prevent scams which lessen the fun for all of us, as well as destroying the value of the real thing. Here is an eBay vendor clearly suggesting, in my view, that he/she has for sale an Old Town sample canoe from the 1920's. I'm shocked because I know it's not right; the size is wrong; it is not properly nor very well made; the brand name along the sides and the logo at the bow is completely made up (an illegal infringement of a protected copyright). Clearly, this seller is either ignorant, or even blatantly trying to deceive. I take the charitable view and write a private message pointing out the errors and offering more info in what I hope is a helpful manner. The objective is both to correctly inform, as well as to persuade the offending listing is best taken down. I get a snarky reply, asking "what my problem is?", and telling me the piece was "never made by Old Town" and is merely "a piece of folk art". Really? That's not the impression I got from the eBay listing; nowhere is this described as "folk art", nor does it say "not really an authentic Old Town sample". In other words, get lost, bud; I'll sell what I want and call it whatever I like. OK, So, in return, I will advise everyone I know that you, "rein18", eBay seller located in Oak Point, NB, lack the ethics I (and many others) expect from dealers. You obviously have more interest in taking in dollars than in handing out reliable service and goods. Call it 'folk art' if you like. Excuse your greed with whatever flimsy story you now seem to concoct. Bottom line: your listing should be changed or withdrawn. In no way is this an Old Town salesman's sample canoe from the 1920's. To describe it as you have is fraudulent and misleading, And, yes, I'm calling you out, and will be doing the same in every other venue that I can. Clean up your act.
     
  2. Jerry Van

    Jerry Van Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Lodge a complaint with eBay. Not against the seller for his sarcasm, but against the auction as being fraudulent.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    I have, in past, contacted eBay on several similar occasions. The eBay system for reporting/complaining is extremely cumbersome and ineffectual. In short, it is difficult to report scams, and it is very questionable whether eBay even wants to be bothered. They appear more concerned about losing their sales fees than in countering crime. Other ebay members report similar difficulties in getting them to act. As for this morning, I wrote privately to the seller, trying to be helpful, providing info to back up my concerns, advising that he was jeopardizing his reputation and suggesting the ad be withdrawn. In return, I got three replies, each telling me basically to "get lost". Reluctantly, but un-apologetically, I took the actions I did. I very openly published my rant in several well-known places where it could be seen by those interested in antique canoes and collectibles. I do believe we all need to fight back against scammers and those whose sales pitches are less than honourable. I have received many supportive comments. Indeed, the action seems to have succeeded - once the matter was made public, the seller withdrew the offending listing. Sellers are personally responsible for the contents of their listings, not simply the Internet sites (which usually disclaim any interest or liability). I rest my case.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
  4. Jerry Van

    Jerry Van Curious about Wooden Canoes

    It's possible eBay pulled it too. I've seen it happen several times after complaints were made to eBay for fraudulent sales. Seems to happen fairly often with another hobby of mine, antique wind-up phonographs.
     
  5. Greg Nolan

    Greg Nolan enthusiast

    Hi Roger and Jerry --

    It looks like you have eliminated the listing -- clicking on the link in Roger's post gets a "page not found" message, and when I checked the listings under rein18 there is no listing for an Old Town model or salesman's sample. Good work!

    Rein18 has three other listings for what seem to be souvenir canoes or rough toy canoes -- Whetung Ojibwa Curve Lake Reserve Native Made [this one has a card with it purporting to show authenticity]; Chippewa Native Made Canada Birch Bark Canoe ["Chippewa Indian Made" carved into it]; and Native Indian Made Canada Birch Bark Canoe #1 [nothing at all to indicate provenance] -- and his text does not characterize them other than to claim that they are made by Native Americans.

    When I was a kid living the the suburbs of Chicago, for a family vacation we would sometimes rent a lakeside cottage up on the Mesabi Iron Range of northern Minnesota, where my parents grew up. One year the cottage came with a treadle-operated sewing machine, which my mother showed me how to operate, and I collected small pieces of birch bark and made several "model" canoes (8 - 10 inches long) using the sewing machine to stitch the stem ends closed. My efforts were better looking that a lot of what is on eBay -- and I never claimed they were anything other than what they were.

    Greg
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Roger Young

    Roger Young display sample collector

    Greg and others:
    For those who may have missed the offending listing and its photos while the ad was still active, you can still access it through the eBay'completed sales' search mechanism. I will try to attach photos here, which should be evident that this is in no way an authentic OT model. I should also point out that the item in question was offered for a 'Buy-it-Now' price of $2999.99, a not inconsequential amount of money. Anyone purchasing in the mistaken belief that it was a true OT sample could have been out a great deal, and badly disappointed.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
  7. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    Roger,
    I was looking for the listing to call the seller out on his mistake... Couldn't find it.
    Maybe he reconsidered.
    eBay sellers are sometimes reluctant to hear what we feel are truths.
    I "counseled" a seller with a Rhinelander Canoe that thought it was a rare Morris. He lived 40 miles from Rhinelander. While it was possibly restorable, bad gunwales, fiberglass and other modifications, he relented on the $6800 price tag, and listed it as a Rhinelander.
    Thanks to all that help to keep wooden canoe sellers informed and honest...!
     

Share This Page