An Important Message from PSA


It has come to my attention that, over the weekend, a couple of message board users began posting conspiracy theories about a particular order, questioning PSA’s grading process and so forth.

First, we have warned message board users in the past about posting conspiracy theory-type comments and/or ones that can be construed as unfounded bashing. We will not tolerate that kind of behavior. It is unhealthy for the community and the hobby, not to mention flat out wrong.

Second, in this particular case, a user was complaining about a series of PSA cert numbers on an order and questioning how the entire series was nothing but PSA Gem Mint 10s. The insinuation was that the submitter was getting some sort of preferential treatment on the grades, resulting in the excellent results for the customer.

In other words, in the mind of the conspiracy theorist, there was simply no possible way someone could get an order like that without something fishy going on.

Here’s the deal and it’s very simple. Though rare, some customers choose to only have certain grades encapsulated and processed on large orders. For those who are familiar with the concept, you might think of this as setting a “minimum grade” for the entire order of cards.

As a result, the only cards that actually receive a cert number are the ones that the customer would want in the PSA holder. For example, if someone submitted 1,000 cards but only 213 of the graded PSA Gem Mint 10, all that is visible in the system are the 213 cards that met the minimum grade under this arrangement.

From a cert number standpoint, all you can see are 213 consecutive PSA Gem Mint 10s, but you cannot see the other 787 cards that were evaluated but didn’t make the grade or the cert stage so to speak. That is the customer’s choice, as long as they pay our required fees.

That is why the orders, from a distance, can look the way that they do.

So, once again, for those of you who want to post nonsense on our message boards, you will be removed immediately. If something comes up in the future and a person has a question about anything at PSA, I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask that you contact us so we can simply answer the question.

Most situations like this can be avoided by simply communicating before posting harmful, unfounded lies.

Our message boards were not designed to allow these types of people to act in this manner and we will defend it aggressively.

Sincerely,

Joe Orlando
President

Joe Orlando



«1

Comments

  • This makes sense to me. Thanks for informing the boards about this situation.

    Sincerely,
    Rob
    BUYING Frank Gotch T229 Kopec
    Looking to BUY n332 1889 SF Hess cards and high grade cards from 19th century especially. "Once you have wrestled everything else in life is easy" Dan Gable
  • OAKESY25OAKESY25 Posts: 4,398 ✭✭✭
    image

    Thanks for the post,
    it was informative. I doubt it will stop the continuous posts as new members filter in and out, but I bet this gets bumped
    or tagged more then a few times.

    edit to try to use the thumbs up emoticon..lol but I don't know which it is.. I never use em much..
    so just imagine the thumbs up!!!
  • That is good to know. Thanks! Does there need to be a minimum submission quantity in order to have a minimum grade? Or any any order you can request that?
  • Joe,

    Although you had no obligation to do so, I think it was in the best interests of all involved to explain this situation. Thanks for explaining to all of those members who did not know how the process worked.
    STAY HEALTHY!

    Doug

    It was tough having to sell almost my entire collection of ~1,700 PSA graded cards from the 1910s - 1970's and my ~250 - 300 Graded Packs from the 50s, 60s and 70s. But when your daughter AND your wife are diagnosed with Cancer, sometimes you don't have a choice. One day I'll get some of them back!
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558
    Great job... now can you stop people from texting while driving, putting their feet on the backs of seats at movie theaters and agreeing to marrying me! image
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards
  • Thanks for the reply Joe. Just remember, no matter what you do you will never make everyone happy. Best of luck to you and PSA.
    Leon Luckey
  • 70ToppsFanatic70ToppsFanatic Posts: 1,810 ✭✭✭
    I have done submissions along the lines Joe has described, and the only thing I don't understand is how the
    cards that do meet the minimum grade end up with sequential cert numbers.

    Whenever I have done this, I always get back the cards that did not meet the minimum grade in their Card Saver I's with
    a red sticker that says "Min Grade" and has what would have been the cert number of the card if it had made the minimum
    grade.

    Between the slabbed cards and the returned cards that did not meet minimum grade I have sequential numbering. But I have
    never experienced such a submission where only the slabbed cards come back with sequential cert numbers.

    I am not suggesting that there is any conspiracy or under-handedness at all. Could Joe please explain in this thread how someone can make
    a "min grade" submission such that all of the slabbed cards would come back with sequential cert numbers (versus my experience where there
    are gaps for all of the cards that did not make the minimum grade)?


    Dave


  • << <i>I have done submissions along the lines Joe has described, and the only thing I don't understand is how the
    cards that do meet the minimum grade end up with sequential cert numbers.

    Whenever I have done this, I always get back the cards that did not meet the minimum grade in their Card Saver I's with
    a red sticker that says "Min Grade" and has what would have been the cert number of the card if it had made the minimum
    grade.

    Between the slabbed cards and the returned cards that did not meet minimum grade I have sequential numbering. But I have
    never experienced such a submission where only the slabbed cards come back with sequential cert numbers.

    I am not suggesting that there is any conspiracy or under-handedness at all. Could Joe please explain in this thread how someone can make
    a "min grade" submission such that all of the slabbed cards would come back with sequential cert numbers (versus my experience where there
    are gaps for all of the cards that did not make the minimum grade)? >>



    BANNED.

    lol J/K
  • 70ToppsFanatic70ToppsFanatic Posts: 1,810 ✭✭✭
    LOL!!!

    Seriously though, it would be useful for Joe to educate all of us as to how to make such a submission.


    Dave
  • larryallen73larryallen73 Posts: 5,642 ✭✭✭
    It won't stop the conspiracy theorists but that's a great post and I am glad you did it. That makes very good sense. The one thing about the thread over the weekend, that was different from the past, is several people gave possible reasons for the high grades. In the past everybody would just jump on and agree that there was a conspiracy. Thus we are evolving around here!
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558


    << <i>I have done submissions along the lines Joe has described, and the only thing I don't understand is how the
    cards that do meet the minimum grade end up with sequential cert numbers.

    Whenever I have done this, I always get back the cards that did not meet the minimum grade in their Card Saver I's with
    a red sticker that says "Min Grade" and has what would have been the cert number of the card if it had made the minimum
    grade.

    Between the slabbed cards and the returned cards that did not meet minimum grade I have sequential numbering. But I have
    never experienced such a submission where only the slabbed cards come back with sequential cert numbers.

    I am not suggesting that there is any conspiracy or under-handedness at all. Could Joe please explain in this thread how someone can make
    a "min grade" submission such that all of the slabbed cards would come back with sequential cert numbers (versus my experience where there
    are gaps for all of the cards that did not make the minimum grade)? >>



    Good question... PSAs Crossover service would be an example when you would only see the minimum grade (in this case PSA 10) with sequential certs since the other cards wouldn't have cert #s assigned... correct?

    I know with Historic Autograph Company, their cards were graded and slabbed in PSA/DNA holders with sequential cert #s from highest to lowest grade. If HAC submitted 26 players autographs, the first 8 might have been PSA 10, the next 12 PSA 9, the next 4 PSA 8, 1 PSA 7 and one may have been questionable. The ones that didn't make grade (authentic) didn't have cert #s. PSA obviously offers a service where they grade and THEN assign cert #s. Otherwise ALL the PSA 10s wouldn't have received consecutive cert #s, PSA 9s, etc.
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards
  • epatmythesepatmythes Posts: 1,506 ✭✭✭


    << <i>LOL!!!

    Seriously though, it would be useful for Joe to educate all of us as to how to make such a submission. >>



    Joe made these 2 statements which really clue into the answer you are looking for...

    "Though rare, some customers choose to only have certain grades encapsulated and processed on large orders."

    "but you cannot see the other 787 cards that were evaluated but didn’t make the grade or the cert stage so to speak"

    For simplicity of math, and psuedo-truth... he used 1000 as the easy example of a large order. I said psuedo-truth, not as a bash, but because it would have mathematically been simpler to use the example of 100... but nobody would consider that a large order. The reality is... what PSA is really dealing with is orders of 10,000 or more.

    It's not talked about much, but PSA does give sweetheart deals (IE. ridiculously low rates for regular, monster orders). Why talk about it... after all, less than 5% of their customer base is likely in a position to take advantage of such!

    You might be thinking... I want in on that action!!! But do you really? In theory, it sounds good... but do you really think you could submit 20,000+ cards a month... every month... for at least a year? I use this as an example because it is along the lines of one I am aware of that they made in the past. Few can do this... I know I couldn't!

    So, while you may have done min-grade in the past... on what you might consider a larger order... PSA isn't actually considering that a "large" order.

    As Joe said... though rare... which refers to these select monster orders... they don't exactly follow the normal everyday order process. In these rare cases, they only cert and slab what makes it through this extra evaluation step... unique to such monster orders.

    At the end of the day though... the cards are still held to the same grading standards as every other card that goes through PSA... which is the real point to take home!



    Eric
    ETP - Da Yooper Collection
  • Correct me if i am wrong in assuming how this played out (minus the sequential numbering part, I don't care about that)

    Customer has 1000 cards that they think have a good chance at being graded Gem Mint PSA 10

    Customer ships card to PSA with instructions to only slab the ones that do meet the Gem Mint 10 standard and to not slab the rest.

    Customer still pays for each of the cards that do not get the Gem Mint 10 standard

    Customer is shipped back 700 plus cards in raw form that they just paid an estimated 3500 dollars to not get slabbed at less than Gem Mint 10

    So my question is this. Assuming that the majority of those ungraded 700 cards would get 9s why would you want them returned ungraded when you paid for the service anyhow. Will these cards just keep getting resubmitted until a different grader (or different grading company) does give them 10s?
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558


    << <i>So my question is this. Assuming that the majority of those ungraded 700 cards would get 9s why would you want them returned ungraded when you paid for the service anyhow. Will these cards just keep getting resubmitted until a different grader (or different grading company) does give them 10s? >>



    Maybe some dealers want to be known as THE source for PSA 10s?
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards
  • So why not spend the same amount, take the 700 9s and blow them out at five bucks each or less to recoup some of the 3500 you spent either way.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • Dpeck100Dpeck100 Posts: 8,948 ✭✭✭
    Joe what threw even the most advanced collectors on this board off was that this sub had certs issued with no grade.

    In the example you give only those cards that meet the minimum grade that was requested recieve a cert and this sub had nearly 3% of the certs without one assigned.

    I could be wrong but I think the concern was not specific to does PSA give out grades to large volume dealers but instead did a huge number of sheet cut cards get by the graders. This particular dealer was outed by the PSA detectives for buying the top of the line laser paper cutter in the past 12 months from their EBAY feedback.

    I think it is fair to say with the advancements in technology that perhaps a few sheet cut cards have inadvertanly been graded and the two issues combined had a number of people spooked. This dealer does quite a bit of business with Beckett too and they allow sheet cut cards so it would seem logical after seeing this dealer buy uncut sheets on EBAY that he is using that extremely expensive paper cutter for his business which is selling cards.

    Personally I hope that all of the cards this dealer sent in were indeed from packs or sets and if there are cards getting through that shouldn't that PSA works harder to catch them.

  • bxbbxb Posts: 815 ✭✭


    << <i>Correct me if i am wrong in assuming how this played out (minus the sequential numbering part, I don't care about that)

    Customer has 1000 cards that they think have a good chance at being graded Gem Mint PSA 10

    Customer ships card to PSA with instructions to only slab the ones that do meet the Gem Mint 10 standard and to not slab the rest.

    Customer still pays for each of the cards that do not get the Gem Mint 10 standard

    Customer is shipped back 700 plus cards in raw form that they just paid an estimated 3500 dollars to not get slabbed at less than Gem Mint 10

    So my question is this. Assuming that the majority of those ungraded 700 cards would get 9s why would you want them returned ungraded when you paid for the service anyhow. Will these cards just keep getting resubmitted until a different grader (or different grading company) does give them 10s? >>



    Some cards, even in PSA 9, are not worth much.
    Capecards
  • epatmythesepatmythes Posts: 1,506 ✭✭✭


    << <i>So why not spend the same amount, take the 700 9s and blow them out at five bucks each or less to recoup some of the 3500 you spent either way. >>



    That's a lot of dead inventory to keep on hand... as a I said above, these folks' orders are way bigger than 1000 cards!

    Older stuff, I'm sure these submitters say slab everything 9 or higher... but that's probably not the case with modern.

    There are a ton of modern base cards that will sell for $12-25 (or more) a piece on PSA 10's... those same cards, in PSA 9, can't find a buyer at even $5!!!

    Why keeps hundreds, but really thousands, of these may-never-sell cards in your inventory... the money is being made on the slabbed one's anyway, not these!



    Eric
    ETP - Da Yooper Collection
  • You may have just answered my question without intending to answer my question.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • Okay but the money is being spent to have the graders assess these cards either way. Are they worth more in raw form then they are graded PSA 9. More than $5 more?
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558


    << <i>Okay but the money is being spent to have the graders assess these cards either way. Are they worth more in raw form then they are graded PSA 9. More than $5 more? >>



    I can guarantee large submitters are not paying any where near $5 to have a card "reviewed".
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards
  • Solid point. Gets back to me wondering what they do pay.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set


  • << <i>Okay but the money is being spent to have the graders assess these cards either way. Are they worth more in raw form then they are graded PSA 9. More than $5 more? >>



    Yep. A card that doesn't get a 10 but looks great raw can be sold that way. Someone will see it on Ebay, think it looks like it has a shot at a 10, and pay more than $5 for it.
    ----------------------
    Working on the following: 1970 Baseball PSA, 1970-1976 Raw, World Series Subsets PSA, 1969 Expansion Teams PSA, Fleer World Series Sets, Texas Rangers Topps Run 1972-1989
    ----------------------

    Successful deals to date: thedudeabides,gameusedhoop,golfcollector,tigerdean,treetop,bkritz, CapeMOGuy,WeekendHacker,jeff8877,backbidder,Salinas,milbroco,bbuckner22,VitoCo1972,ddfamf,gemint,K,fatty macs,waltersobchak,dboneesq


  • << <i>Okay but the money is being spent to have the graders assess these cards either way. Are they worth more in raw form then they are graded PSA 9. More than $5 more? >>



    Ironically, I believe they would sell better in raw than as a PSA 9. A graded 9 card is at the same time a death sentence for modern cards. While in its raw state, it still has potential to buyers looking to grade stuff.
  • Good points, thank you. If they are in fact paying 2 bucks per card for grading this does make sense.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • nam812nam812 Posts: 9,285 ✭✭
    Bring carolj back.
    My 1910 Champions T218 set at 100% with a GPA of 5.01, and all 153 cards are scanned.


  • << <i>Bring carolj back. >>



    Is Carol not with PSA anymore?
    I dont wanna grow up, Im a Toys-R-Us kid!
  • Mr. Orlando,

    Any chance we can get you to comment on the Wagner card, the Maestro scandal, or Probstien's 8's to 10's since you feel like clearing the air??

    Thanks

    image
    image
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558


    << <i>Mr. Orlando,

    Any chance we can get you to comment on the Wagner card, the Maestro scandal, or Probstien's 8's to 10's since you feel like clearing the air??

    Thanks

    image >>



    We're all here today to remember Steve and the posts he once made on the CU PSA forum. image
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards


  • << <i>If something comes up in the future and a person has a question about anything at PSA, I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask that you contact us so we can simply answer the question.

    Most situations like this can be avoided by simply communicating before posting harmful, unfounded lies.

    Sincerely,

    Joe Orlando
    President >>



    Just following what the boss said to do
    image
  • llafoellafoe Posts: 7,558


    << <i>

    << <i>If something comes up in the future and a person has a question about anything at PSA, I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask that you contact us so we can simply answer the question.

    Most situations like this can be avoided by simply communicating before posting harmful, unfounded lies.

    Sincerely,

    Joe Orlando
    President >>



    Just following what the boss said to do >>



    I'm pretty certain he meant directly and not as a general comment/question (or in your case, several specific questions) on this forum. image
    WANTED: Cincinnati Reds TEAM Cards


  • << <i>

    << <i>

    << <i>If something comes up in the future and a person has a question about anything at PSA, I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask that you contact us so we can simply answer the question.

    Most situations like this can be avoided by simply communicating before posting harmful, unfounded lies.

    Sincerely,

    Joe Orlando
    President >>



    Just following what the boss said to do >>



    I'm pretty certain he meant directly and not as a general comment/question (or in your case, several specific questions) on this forum. image >>



    Well I'm not one for all the cloak and dagger stuff. If you have nothing to hide then put it out there for all to see.
    image
  • I loved Cloak & Dagger when I was a kid...fun movie. I was always jealous I never had walkie talkies after that!
    Successful BST transactions with: pragmaticgoat, silverbullusa, CCC2010, PRoemisch
  • swartz1swartz1 Posts: 4,910 ✭✭✭
    time for a Q and A session...


    Looking for 1970 MLB Photostamps
    - uncut


    Positive Transactions - tennesseebanker, Ahmanfan, Donruss, Colebear, CDsNuts, rbdjr1, Downtown1974, yankeeno7, drewsef, mnolan, mrbud60, msassin, RipublicaninMass, AkbarClone, rustywilly, lsutigers1973, julen23 and nam812, plus many others...
  • aconteaconte Posts: 1,957 ✭✭✭
    brianwintersfan,

    It was nice knowing you here. We look forward to hearing when you come back as brianwintersfan2.

    aconte
  • dtkk49adtkk49a Posts: 2,378 ✭✭✭
    Mr. Orlando,

    May I suggest posting forum rules at the top of page one of the PSA forum? The PCGS Coin forum has had their forum rules posted for all to read for quite some time now (and they are very rigid).



    Follow me - Cards_and_Coins on Twitter



    They call me "Pack the Ripper"
  • Fantastic to see the PSA owner connecting with hobbyists. In the Game's owner, Brian Price, is great at it. Very accessible and a joy to chat with.

    In addition to setting the record straight when needed, it'd be nice to see Joe Orlando proactively and positively communicating with customers as well.
  • Brian Price is going to lose it if he knows you don't refer to him as DOCTOR Brian Price.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set
  • And I would prefer Joe Orlando worry about my order that he received a week ago being logged in on time rather than reading message boards.
    Collecting Wayne Gretzky Master OPC Set


  • << <i>Brian Price is going to lose it if he knows you don't refer to him as DOCTOR Brian Price. >>



    70% of the folks I work with are PhDs. I'm not (I have a MS). We all refer to each other by first names. I still haven't met anyone that demands to be called "Doctor" when talking in an interpersonal setting.

    BTW... when speaking with Brian Price, I've referred to him as Brian. No issues to report. image
  • dennis07dennis07 Posts: 1,480 ✭✭✭
    I could be wrong but I would think one of his employees is tasked with reading the forum and
    relaying to him any topic he has advised they relay his way.
    Collecting 1970 Topps baseball
  • BrickBrick Posts: 3,126 ✭✭✭
    Another reason some would have a large percentage of Gem Mint grades is that when you submit in such large numbers and spend that amount of money you really know what you are doing or you hire someone who does.
    Collecting 1960 Topps Baseball in PSA 8
    http://www.unisquare.com/store/brick/

    Ralph

  • vladguerrerovladguerrero Posts: 4,083 ✭✭✭
    didnt mean to derail ...blessed our father Joe...
  • tsalems1tsalems1 Posts: 3,272 ✭✭✭


    << <i>I could be wrong but I would think one of his employees is tasked with reading the forum and
    relaying to him any topic he has advised they relay his way. >>



    No doubt and I have a prety good idea who it is.

    Doubt Joe Orlando is up at midnight reading the boards
    www.OPCBASEBALL.com

    Email: OPCBASEBALL@YAHOO.COM

    Follow OPCBASEBALL.COM on Face book


  • << <i>

    << <i>

    << <i>Brian Price is going to lose it if he knows you don't refer to him as DOCTOR Brian Price. >>



    70% of the folks I work with are PhDs. I'm not (I have a MS). We all refer to each other by first names. I still haven't met anyone that demands to be called "Doctor" when talking in an interpersonal setting.

    BTW... when speaking with Brian Price, I've referred to him as Brian. No issues to report. image >>



    The clowns blog is called "According to Dr. Price". He promotes it as much as his fake jersey ridden product. >>



    Just going off of my first-hand experience... and ITG is up front with what their jersey are or aren't. They, by far, have the best customer service around. I can understand if you don't like jerseys, but they put out a ton of sets with obscure players. They actually ask the collectors for ideas on what products to put together. Barely any redemptions (if any at all) IN their products. Weird concepts, eh? Save the hate for Upper Deck and Topps.


  • << <i>Just going off of my first-hand experience... and ITG is up front with what their jersey are or aren't. They, by far, have the best customer service around. I can understand if you don't like jerseys, but they put out a ton of sets with obscure players. They actually ask the collectors for ideas on what products to put together. Barely any redemptions (if any at all) IN their products. Weird concepts, eh? Save the hate for Upper Deck and Topps. >>


    Why is this thread being derailed with this nonsense?
  • vladguerrerovladguerrero Posts: 4,083 ✭✭✭
    didnt mean to derail
  • olb31olb31 Posts: 1,122 ✭✭
    beckett offered me the same deal that joe is talking about with psa. for 500 or more cards it $9 to encapsulate and $2 not to. for orders under 500, it was $11 to encapsulate and $2 not to. i would assume that psa is somewhere in that neighborhood, maybe a little cheaper for someone like 4sc.
    Work hard and you will succeed!!


  • << <i>And some people do like airbrushed non licensed products with jerseys that were bought from people who misrepresented them as authentic, to each their own. >>



    Start a new thread and bring the proof... otherwise you're as good as the reason this thread was started.
  • TNP777TNP777 Posts: 5,459 ✭✭✭


    << <i>So, once again, for those of you who want to post nonsense on our message boards, you will be removed immediately. If something comes up in the future and a person has a question about anything at PSA, I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask that you contact us so we can simply answer the question. >>

    Joe, who exactly do members here contact if they have a question about something? I guess the obvious answer is call Newport Beach, but what about lesser stuff? My point is this: why do we not have a clearly defined moderating team here? I have been a member of probably close to two dozen various message boards over the years; at least half of those have been hobby related. Every message board has had a well-known, interactive, hands-on moderation team. Here at CU, the overwhelming majority of us haven't the foggiest idea who to contact if we have a question, or a complaint, or whatever. The last two empoyees who started threads here were JackieC on October 2, and LauraR on October 24. Guess what? Neither one of them have their PMs turned on - nice. I even started a thread once that very politely asked for the moderators to be identified. What happened? The thread was deleted shortly after it started.

    BTW, it seems at least one member does know who to contact, as many people who have run afoul of said member have received "stop it or else" emails from an anonymous CU representative. Why does this one member have the ear of someone at CU, and not the rest of us? Why are your employees being so shy?

    In the light of this current controversy, deleting threads and banning members (some of whom were asking very legitimate questions) does NOT reflect well on PSA. Joe, IMO you or one of your representatives should have been out in front of this the instant it became known that things were being said here. Instead, the flames of the conspiracy theorists were fed with kerosene.

    My $0.02. I hope to still be around after CU reps have read it.
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