COMC the Latest Site to be Hit by Dealers of Altered Cards
Blowout alleges that altered cards have made their way onto the COMC site
A new wrinkle hit the months-long altered cards scandal that has been discovered at Blowout. While most of the alleged cards in that scandal had previously appeared for sale on eBay, another site is being hit by fraudulent sellers in COMC.
COMC (short for Check Out My Cards) is a popular marketplace connecting buyers and sellers. It is unique in that the site serves as the facilitator for sales and makes life easy for buyers and sellers. Sellers ship their cards to the company, the company identifies, scans, and sorts them before listing them for sale. Further, COMC also offers many of the sellers’ cards on eBay. Once a collector buys the card, it is then removed from the site and placed into their account. The buyer can then keep the card, request it be sent to them, or them try to sell it on the site for a profit. In the days of flipping cards, it has become quite a hub for collectors.
Sellers love it because COMC, for a fee, does all the work. Buyers love it because for one consolidated amount, they can receive a combined shipment of cards from many sellers.
I began using the site a while back, though have really begun using it more lately as I’ve been collecting more pre-war cards from different sports, including boxing, tennis, and golf. Many times, their pre-war cards are listed higher than eBay prices. But I’ve still found a good many deals there, including some tougher international cards, and have bought quite a bit in the past year.
The Blowout allegations here detail sellers that have purportedly been selling altered cards. The allegations are similar to past ones from the PSA / PWCC / eBay fiasco where comparisons of cards before and after appear to show cards have been altered. At the center of the cards being pointed out have been cards that have often been been trimmed.
It should be noted that the majority of the cards outed, so far, are post-war modern issues. I’m not sure how much pre-war stuff has been identified, if any. Still, as we saw with the PWCC/eBay scandal, cards from any era are susceptible, really.
Couple of things to point out here. First, there’s zero evidence of COMC doing anything wrong here. They, like eBay, are merely the marketplace the sellers have chosen to unload these cards. They have started to pull cards from at least the cited accounts in that Blowout thread.
Second, this is really not too surprising. eBay is the site most frequently mentioned with regards to the altered cards scandal but that’s only because many of the cards were sold by PWCC, an eBay seller. Plenty of trimmers exist elsewhere and they are undoubtedly using all kinds of outlets to sell cards. Frankly, it would have been a surprise if any altered cards were not surfacing on COMC.
For their part, COMC has come out with a pretty strong response. You can read it here but here is the tl;dr information:
COMC will be offering a full refund on any item that is discovered to have been altered. We want to stress to our customers that we are actively auditing every product that has been sold or that is currently for sale in our known records for signs of alteration. If a product has been found to be altered, we will be directly contacting the affected customers to offer refunds if they would like to return the item.
Since our inception our brand promise has been to be the “The Safe and Easy Way to Buy and Sell Cards”. As part of this promise, we are continually investing in the improvement of our various technologies, procedures, and policies that will create the proper safeguards for our customers. We will be adjusting our policies and procedures to make it harder for altered items to get onto COMC. This starts with, but is not limited to, strict penalties for fraudulent activities on our platform.
A few things to point out there. This is obviously pretty bold on their part. At least when so little seems to be known at this point.
Details aren’t yet known and the number of altered cards could wind up being pretty high. Several people in the COMC thread cited spending thousands of dollars with sellers accused of offering altered cards. And if many of those cards were slabbed by PSA, it will be interesting to see if COMC seeks money from PSA to make them whole.
Still, this only addresses cards that are still in the possession of buyers. If a buyer has since gotten rid of a card, that might be impossible to track down at this point. Even if COMC does refund a bunch of buyers, the problem is not likely to ever be fully eliminated since many more cards could be in the hands of others by now. There’s nothing COMC can necessarily do about that.
Just another reminder that wherever you’re buying cards, no space is likely to be 100% safe from altered cards.