Friday, February 26, 2010

JSA-James Spence. Autograph Industry Embarrassment

What else can you call this guy who has embarrassed himself through PSA/DNA and continues under his own name telling everyone to "follow the leader." Spence has got to be delusional. This self-proclaimed "leader" will help fill your collection with fake autographs or tell you your genuine autographs are fake. He has taken rubber stamped and preprinted signatures and issued his worthless COA stating the item is genuine. What else can you expect from someone impersonating an autograph authenticator?

Spence has made a fool of himself at shows authenticating forged signatures as genuine of a celebrity who was attending the same show as an autograph guest.

A popular item sold on eBay was the taped interview of Spence on Fox News where Spence authenticated as genuine signatures that were specifically forged for Spence to examine.

Another ridiculous situation, James Spence is one of eBay’s authenticators. The above mentioned tape was eventually pulled from being sold by eBay. It was one heck of an embarrassment. With Spence and PSADNA being authenticators for eBay it’s no surprise why so many bad autographs are being sold as genuine on eBay. Not to mention that good autographs are being taken down. These authenticating imposters just don’t know. We can assure you that eBay is very much aware of this autograph authenticating mess. Many are calling these authenticating companies, scams!

If anything imaginable could go wrong authenticating autographs at James Spence Authentication, you can be assured it has many times over. Do you want another reason to avoid anything that comes with a James Spence Authentication?

Go to eBay, item number 220555250928. B-E Collecibles is offering a Chris Short Single signed baseball. B-E Collectibles states in their description that a Certificate of Authenticity is included from reputable JSA". Now, where did B-E hear that JSA was reputable? We have to believe they know better but this is just one more reason to avoid doing business with any seller who sells something authenticated by one of the companies who claims they can authenticate autographs. This ball got 8 bids from 5 uneducated bidders. It sold for $145.50.

A Gary Sheffield Signed Baseball That was
James Spence (JSA) Authenticated as Chris Short Signed Baseball

"Follow the Leader, James Spence" to the bottom of the autograph barrel. Spence at a minimum needs to be tarred and feathered before fleeing this hobby. Whatever happened when an inexperienced authenticator got it wrong by saying a forged autograph was genuine and issued their worthless COA. Just as often, these simpletons failed genuine autographs. It appears those were the good ole days. Let’s "Follow the Leader" to a new lower level. The signature on the ball illustrated above is NOT of Chris Short. It is the fairly common signature of Gary Sheffield. James Spence you hit rock bottom and need to find another vocation. The hobby needs to rid themselves of these quasi-authenticators.

In future B-E Collectibles sales., will they still use James Spence Authentication and state "included from reputable JSA"?

Most card shops and shows that have James Spence Authenticating are well aware of his authenticating incompetence. It’s all about making a buck and these business need to be avoided. They are all contributing to having a continuous flow of mis-authenticated items enter collections.

The hobby is still attempting to self police itself. Collectors need to avoid all shops, shows and the few auction houses left that use these wannabe autograph authenticators!!


  1. I had an autographed photo of Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle supposedly authenticated at the Earle Brown Heritage Center yesterday, April 6 2013. The photo was taken by one of your reps with curly black hair and glasses, probably in his 30's. I left him with the photo. He took the photo and laid it on the table while fidgeting around on his laptop. I walked away doing my investigation of merchandise at this card show while keeping an eye on my photo I left to be authenticated. I was then astonished to watch my photo be placed on a table behind the table the man was sitting at. I kept a close eye on my photo and it was never scrutinized heavily. It was not investigated or gone over. I only saw these 2 men representing JSA sit there and take orders and place items on a table behind them. I circled that table many times and never seen them do any forensics on my photo. From what I saw, the curly haired man with glasses did a quick look over investigation of my photo. I paid $75 for a sham of an authentication. The bigger guy wanted $100 when I first brought the photo up to them. I reminded the glasses man he told me $75 the day before. I did not see any professionalism while during this sequence of events. I felt taken for a ride. The photo in question was personally signed by Joe D and The Mick. I have done many investigations on my own and have found that money is the number one game in town when it comes to authentication. I feel sad that JSA did not want to take the time to do the forensics on my photo or the other items at that table. Give us the money, we won't say it's good cuz we don't have the time or the equipment to do that right now at this table. It is easier to send people on their way with a NO, than it is to do the work of an investigator in authentication. I should of never trusted JSA when I saw the setup the first day. Two foldout tables and no booth for unfettered, scientific analysis of signatures. I am suppose to be sent my "not genuine" letter soon. I will keep the letter because it is worth $75. The photo was given to me by my dad before he passed a few years back. JSA showed me why I do not trust flim flam setups like yours was at this card show. I should of went away but...
    Bummer for me right? Hahaha!!

  2. tom that story was so eye opening… pathetic…. absolutely pathetic

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  4. JSA was by far the WORST experience I've ever had, They told me a Jason Witten autographed picture I had authenticated was going to pass and the next thing I knew I got a letter a few weeks later saying it failed. I also took them an Andy Griffith cast signed coloring book and it passed and they screwed up the LOA - The letter said it had 19 signatures in which it had 29 it also said it was signed on the front and it was signed on both the front (19) and back (10). One of the worst experiences I have ever had, and they had the nerve to charge me over $600 for this...Plus I showed their rep both sides of the book were signed so there is no reason for this incompetence!! They will not make it right either - My advice is go PSA/DNA all the way...