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Bad Internet Information…… A Classic Example!!

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    Posted 2 years ago

    (201 items)

    So I have written on more occasions than I can count, and in many different forums regarding bad information that can be found on the internet, and how collectors and sellers should always vette sources if possible, before regarding them to be a source of reliable information. In the age of Pinterest boards and armchair experts, there may not be a more perfect example of what I am referring to.

    In the process of doing a Google search the other night, I found myself staring at an interesting post regarding some vases. First, let me point out, for those that are not aware, these are my vases in my own personal collection, and that my Argentan examples are solidly confirmed as Loetz Rosa Argentan…… There is no doubt about it…… and if I were to say tomorrow that they were for sale, my inbox would be full of emails from high end Loetz collectors around the world.

    The post I was looking at was in a Pinterest board, professed by the user posting to it, that many of their boards were “research related”. This individual also claims to have an informative website about Czech glass.

    So what I was staring at, was an older picture of one of my own Argentan vases, as posted on the old, and taken with an early digital camera. The image is not as color accurate as more recent images posted here. The difference seen in image 2 are the results of a $1500 difference in the price of cameras the pictures were taken with, and large technological advances in digital photography made in a many year period between the two photo sessions.

    The old image of my vase was posted in a board titled “Repro Bohemian/Czech Glass”…. I was fascinated by what I found. The board owner had the following statement posted about the Pinterest board.

    “The common denominator here is that each piece was made either, to copy valuable glass, such as Loetz or Murano, or to reproduce glass made elsewhere and fool the buyer, or re-introduce a glass style that is now vintage or antique. Made in several countries, over a long span after WWII. Often we find out because someone saw it sold new with a label somewhere recently. Descriptions are those of the image originator.”

    Imagine how dismayed I was to discover that the vases I own, verified as Loetz Argentan by some of the best authorities on Loetz in the world, were actually now revealed to be reproductions… by someone posting on Pinterest!! Image my disappointment to find that what were originally identified as world class examples of the décor, were now revealed by a Pinterest "expert" to be fakes….

    Image 1 above shows the old image of my vase I found on the Pinterest board of “Repros”. The image had been copied from the original, which can still be found on the internet, and to top it off, had been copied from the page for the Argentan décor. You can see that in the 4th image on the left side.

    Image 2 shows the old and new images of the same vase, in approximately the same position. The left example was shot indoors with a $100 digital camera. The right example, also shown on the pinterest board, was taken many years later with a $1500 camera in outdoor sunlight. This was seemingly done to show how the image had been manipulated to make it look different that it actually was. Obviously the better image was the one that had been manipulated.

    Image 3 shows my Argentan pair in the upper left, along with several other examples of Loetz Pink Argentan vases. These examples are from both my website, and also found on the new This image shows not only other examples of the same décor, it also shows the extreme differences that can appear in photographs. This image highlights why understanding glass and being able to identify decors, sometimes in spite of questionable photography, goes a long way in collecting and researching.

    The following statement is made on the board regarding the first image:


    Considering the fact that this individual has never seen or handled these vases, I am not real sure how they came upon their “information”.

    My reasons for posting this are pretty simple.

    1) Anyone can post anything on the internet and say what they want about it. That does not make it true, or even close to accurate. Everyone should question information they see, especially if it relates to their area of collecting. Collecting is fun. Being an educated collector does take some work.

    2) Information such as this, if believed by someone that just trusts the source without realizing how much, or how little, they actually know, would put themselves in a situation of possibly not buying an example of a Loetz vase in this rare décor (or any other item they were misinformed about) if they ever saw one, believing it to be something it is not.

    3) Information posted on the internet by any individuals should always be vetted, unless that source is known to you, or known to be a reliable and well researched source.

    There are many ways to vet information and sources. Those include some very large and knowledgeable Facebook glass groups, and specialty groups in that forum for just about any type of glass. The same applies to just about any type of collectible. There is also a resource called, an international resource with thousands of members including experts, authors, and some of the world’s most knowledgeable authorities on just about any type of art glass.

    Collecting and learning can be very fulfilling, and good accurate information is invaluable…..

    Make sure the information upon which you base your collecting, is worth your trust…. No matter how good it appears to be….

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    1. scottvez scottvez, 2 years ago
      GREAT posting with valuable information.

      Lots of garbage posted online and taken as fact by newer collectors. Unfortunately not all sites are created equally and some site creators have motivations ($$, grudge, etc...) beyond helping others.

      Let me add the same caveat about OLDER PRINTED resources (books/ magazines/ catalogs). Much of what was published, even 20 years ago, represented understanding of the collectible subject at that particular time. Many attributions and identifications have changed with studies and information that is now available.

    2. Anik Anik, 2 years ago

      I haven’t seen the Pinterest page you are referring to, but I find it rather sad (and annoying) that a general statement about fakes or repros is given, but no further information as to why X, Y and Z are ‘fakes’ is provided. (At least, that’s what my understanding is). A blurb about someone once seeing one with a label isn’t enough evidence to discredit an attribution (or oppositely, give credit to an attribution). If the person is so sure that the pieces are fakes or ‘repros’, then they should provide proper evidence to support that, and enlighten the collecting world. Otherwise, such information is worth poop.

      That’s a beautiful vase, by the way.
    3. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 2 years ago
      Hi Craig, what an interesting post and utterly deplorable of the person who wrote the article. I don't know much about glass, being relatively new to collecting, but even with my limited knowledge have seen so much mis attributed glass online that I'm always a bit wary now. I've never heard, or seen, to my knowledge, genuine items being presented as fakes though. I just wondered, if you know, are there actual fakes of this vase around?
    4. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      Hi Fran.... No there are no known fakes of this decor. The closest thing to even a "copy" of this decor would be some Italian glass using foil like Loetz did, but nothing that even comes close to these in terms of quality or execution.

      I agree with you Scott, and all sources of information need to be vetted before utilizing them as an "accurate" resource.

      I also agree with you Anik, in that any example being declared to be a repro or fake needs to have detailed information provided to support why. Unfortunately in today's world all one needs to be an "expert" is the time to spend building a website that resembles something worthwhile, and the desire to post on the internet, whether it is accurate or not. My vases are certainly not the only mistakes in the persons collection of "glass boards" in Pinterest, they are simply the one I found to be the most profoundly absurd.

      I am always reminded of the Tango book that came out in 2009, and had a website to sell them. They also were available on ebay.

      "Loetz Tango Glass"
      by Herman Spaink
      ISBN: 10.90-810444-1-9

      The book claimed to be images and attributions from the collection of a European Museum..... Even auction houses started to quote the book as a resource for their attributions, as did ebay sellers.

      The problem ended up being that information in the book was junk, and the museum that the collection was from, did not even exist. It was an elaborate scam to sell a printing of privately published books with some nice pics of Czech glass.

      I have always said that this type of thing (bad information) is completely disrespectful of people trying to learn, especially those new to any area of collecting. I see people all the time using questionable sources for ID's. There is enough "accidentally bad" information available to people, without a concerted effort by some to mislead others.

      In the case of my vases, it takes about 5 minutes on the internet to determine what they are...... especially in light of the fact that the image was copied from the correct deocr page on the old, and then reused to claim they are fake or repros.

      Hopefully the glass attributions on their website are actually researched more competently than these "repros" were.....

      Somehow, I have my doubts that they are.
    5. billretirecoll billretirecoll, 2 years ago
      Thank you for this post, and the importance of researching the information, that you may find, on the internet, or anywhere else, welzebub.
      If you repost information, that you get, always give the source, and a link if possible, so others that use it, can complete their research. I've found so many posts on Pinterest, that have bad links, or no information at all, other than the general title of their page i.e. "Loetz Glass" and then just reposts of glass objects, and then maybe a link from ebay, that just brings you to ebay, and not the object you were searching for!
      Thanks again! :^)
    6. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      The entire Pinterest board containing the post I am discussing here, and some other mistaken information has now been deleted. Luckily I saved the information, and will post it here in the 4th image with the original page when I have a chance. I think people are deserving of knowing the source of this type of blatantly wrong, and deliberately misconstrued information. Where others make mistakes, this appears to have been a deliberate action which would have stayed on the internet had I not inadvertently found it, and brought it to the light.
    7. billretirecoll billretirecoll, 2 years ago
      Great job welzebub! :^)
    8. kralik1928 kralik1928, 2 years ago
      Haters, Anonymous bullies
    9. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      It appears I was mistaken, as it seems that the repro board changed positions on the Pinterest page I looked at. Fortunately for everyone :-) the bad information is still available on the internet. It would appear that now the information is also posted in greater and more bizarre detail on a "glass website", and as opposed to simply writing a post about it, I thought I would simply post a link to the page so there is no possibility of me presenting something that could be construed as a misunderstanding, regarding my representation of what is being posted on the site. I would also not want to violate their implied copyright on the materials there.

      If anyone has any doubts at all as to the validity of the Argentan attribution for the vases being discussed, I certainly encourage you to contact any number of authorities here, or any other forum, that can certainly verify what they are. Feel free to copy any of my pics to do so..... even the bad one would suffice.

      I can say without hesitation, that although I have certainly seen my fair share of really strange occurrences both here, and in some forums on the internet, this one has taken "bizarre" to an entirely new level. I was going to leave the Pinterest site and the identity of the poster anonymous , but in light of the additional article, I have now change my mind.

      The link to the new posted page which is titled "CzechRepro1"

    10. IanBrighton IanBrighton, 2 years ago
      My only experience of this - on Instagram - has been supportive/positive: someone reposted an image with reference to its source and a suggestion to look at the rest of my posts.

      I suppose it would be very different if this were unsolicited and came with information that I felt to be unfounded or wrong or where the motive was less clearly beneficial/informative; maybe even hurtful and misinforming.
    11. IanBrighton IanBrighton, 2 years ago
      The only problem for someone posting in this way is that it makes us doubt even more anything they might propound.
    12. IanBrighton IanBrighton, 2 years ago
      I should add, if any proof were needed.
    13. scottvez scottvez, 2 years ago
      Went to the link and now understand!

    14. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      I agree Ian.

      Yes Scott... reading the "new page" on the website that I linked to, really helps to "clear the air" so to speak.
    15. Rhea17 Rhea17, 2 years ago
      Thank you for this informative post!
    16. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      You are welcome...
      The most disturbing part really, is that all this person had to do was to copy a couple of the pics and post them in any of a wide variety of glass forums or Facebook glass groups and ask opinions as to what they are. There are any number of well qualified people that would have quickly confirmed the Loetz Argentan attribution.... Go figure.
    17. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      This will be my last comment on this subject.
      Thanks to all that stopped by and loved the post.

      The owner of the glass website seems to feel that since no one has come forward to declare these to be Loetz vases here in CW, that their opinion must be correct, and that these are not Loetz.

      The site states:
      "I truly believe these vases are not by Loetz, but may be inspired by Loetz, and this is not a folly on my part to stir trouble, but rather to point out another instance of poor attribution"

      In 2014 there was a Facebook group formed by a well known and respected authority on Loetz glass, called the Loetz Collectors Group. Members of that group include many well respected authorities and well established collectors and dealers from around the world. I have added an image to the last pic above, which is a screen clip of my post when the group was first formed, and I have left a couple of comments there. I have removed all of the names of people, as it is really not fair of me to drag anyone into this "discussion".

      The group description s as follows:
      "Discussions and photos will be strictly limited to the works of art produced by the Loetz art glass company, made in the Czech Republic from approx. 1895-1930. Please limit your posts to what you consider your best works by the Loetz factory. Its my hope to highlight the higher quality pieces or the more unusual forms rather than the more common production lines."

      Needless to say, my post of the Loetz Argtentan vases was very well received...

      I would have suggested that the person who does not believe them to be Loetz go look in the group, but I have had them blocked in facebook since their arrival, and they are unable to see anything I post, or any comments I make there. (The reason may be quite obvious to some)

      They say you can lead a horse to water but you can not make them drink.... I guess that is as true as they say it is.
    18. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      Thanks for the loves from those that have continued to stop by my post.
    19. yesterdaysglass yesterdaysglass, 2 years ago
      Gotta love the internet as well as teamruckl! lol

      You definitely have to be careful about putting much stock into random info.
    20. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      I agree Kyle... Although Team Ruckl seems to have thinned down to the Lone Ruckl Ranger... :-)
    21. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      A heartfelt "Thanks" to those that have continued to stop by my post.
    22. welzebub welzebub, 2 years ago
      It would seem that the "Czech Repro" website page I linked to in comment 9 has been taken down..... at least for now.
    23. scottvez scottvez, 2 years ago
      One less source for garbage information-- suspect more/ others will appear!


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