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Without a doubt, eBay was one of the cleverest on-line ideas that anyone has had so far. The idea of creating a site where you can bid on and buy items ranging from an eggcup through to a disused Boeing 747 or a Nuclear Missile Silo was pure genius.
Sadly though, whenever a good idea comes along, the seedier side of humanity is sure to be not that far behind, sliding along in it's wake leaving a gooey trail behind themselves.
So it is on eBay. Current estimation holds that nigh on 37% of the worlds counterfeit and fake goods are sold daily on eBay.
Having seen some of the listings I can fully believe it.
Especially where designer label goods are concerned.
Take a look at just about any page of Louis Vuitton items listed on eBay and on average you'll find 95% of them on each page are fake.
So how can you avoid the easy to make mistake of buying a cheap quality fake LV?
Learn as much as you can about the specific item you're interested in.
Don't go trawling eBay for ideas on what to buy and expect to be able to find a prize, hidden away deep in the listings. There are LV addicts who spend the best part of the day doing just that, trawling the auctions, checking and rechecking, looking for the bags that are being sold by owners with little knowledge, owners who are selling at a price away below what it should be. Then they'll "snipe" the auction in the last few seconds - right out from under your nose!
If you really want to buy a pre owned LV then your best bet would be to go to a consignment store and see if they can get hold of one for you. They'll have a constantly changing stock of second hand authentic items for you to choose from and you're fairly assured of it being genuine.
But if you really must buy your LV off eBay then try to use one of the approved LV sellers.
Who or what is an approved LV seller, you may well ask?
Well, there are two sets of LV sellers and buyers who have proven themselves, over a period of time as well as a set number of successful sales of authentic goods, and who have a distinction awarded by one of two "bodies".
The two bodies are MyPoupette and ALVA (Authentic Louis Vuitton Addicts).
A MyPoupette recommended seller is known as an MPRS (My Poupette Recommended Seller) and an ALVA recommended seller is known as an ALVA SS (ALVA Seller Select).
Both of these lists have a criteria that any seller MUST meet before being granted the "badge". That criteria requires a certain number of authentic only items to have been sold with supporting feedback and good trading practice before they can qualify.
Once they are awarded this distinction they are then allowed to use that title and badge in their auctions.
Now, although nothing in life is guaranteed, you can be much more assured and comfortable buying your used LV through one of these sellers.
Well, two reasons really.
Firstly, many of the resellers who have earned this level treat their selling and buying as a business. To sell a fake would result in their being stripped of their titles which could seriously affect their turnover! They only deal in authentic items and HATE fakes.
Secondly, both of the bodies who issue these distinctions have an interest and a duty in ensuring that their members behave and sell properly.
Should a buyer have an issue with one of these sellers they can take their complaint to either MyPoupette or ALVA and ask that they intervene. Although neither of these bodies are legally responsible for your sales and purchases with their listed resellers, they do take any complaint seriously and will investigate and assist where possible.
On past record, when you deal with a seller with either of these titles you are going to have a good time!
And that means you avoid buying a fake LV on eBay!
Copyright:: Rufus Steele 2005
Rufus Steele is the author and creator of the Louis Vuitton website, a site dedicated to all things Louis Vuitton