Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Statistics can help us avoid counterfeit goods on the Internet, study shows

Date:
March 14, 2011
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
Consumers need to know the true perils of purchasing artwork or luxury goods on the Internet, say statisticians.

Consumers need to know the true perils of purchasing artwork or luxury goods on the Internet, say statisticians in a paper published March 14 in Significance, the magazine of the Royal Statistical Society and the American Statistical Association.

Related Articles


Currently the operators of internet auction sites are not required to guarantee the authenticity of items listed. The new Significance article, which is a preview of a more detailed article to be published in the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society -- Series A: Statistics in Society, shows that statistical methods used previously in evaluating the accuracy of medical screening tests can be successfully applied to assess the misrepresentation of items offered for sale on Internet auction sites. For consumer protection agencies or producers of expensive goods this is a significant step forward in enabling them to monitor the authenticity of objects offered for sale on the Internet. The results also indicate that the laws on misrepresentation of items for sale on the internet need to be strengthened to provide further protection of the public, claims lead author Professor of Statistics and Economics, Joseph L. Gastwirth, of George Washington University.

In the study the accuracy of the descriptions of artwork by Henry Moore offered on eBay were examined over a period of eighteen months. Two expert evaluators classified the artworks independently, with a third evaluator collecting the data and sending it to them separately. Adapting an established statistical method used to evaluate the accuracy of classifications in medicine and social science, the authors were able to estimate the percentage of artworks which were misrepresented.

The results of the study showed that over 80% of the small sculptures and drawings indicated by eBay sellers as by Henry Moore were in fact not genuine, while over 90% of the signed prints were genuine. "This method should be useful in assessing the reliability of descriptions of works by other artists, as well as some luxury goods," said Professor Gastwirth. "It may also prove useful in the application of statistics in legal cases concerning infringement, as it can be used as a first step in determining the percentage of goods of a certain type that are counterfeit."

The implication for buyers of artworks on internet auction sites is clear. The high proportion of counterfeit works by Henry Moore serve as warning to people looking to buy works by any major artist in this way; they need to exercise extreme caution.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. Gastwirth J L, Johnson W and Hikawa H.; J.R.Statist.Soc.A. Estimating the fraction of 'non-genuine' artwork by Henry Moore for sale on eBay: application of latent class screening test methodology. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society: Series A (Statistics in Society), July 2011 174, Part 4 DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-985X.2010.00682.x
  2. Joseph Gastwirth, Wesley Johnson. Dare you buy a Henry Moore on eBay? Significance, 2011; 8 (1): 10 DOI: 10.1111/j.1740-9713.2011.00470.x

Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "Statistics can help us avoid counterfeit goods on the Internet, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 March 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314091640.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2011, March 14). Statistics can help us avoid counterfeit goods on the Internet, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314091640.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "Statistics can help us avoid counterfeit goods on the Internet, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314091640.htm (accessed March 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Computers & Math News

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Facebook Building Plane-Sized Drones For Global Internet

Facebook Building Plane-Sized Drones For Global Internet

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) Facebook on Thursday revealed more details about its Internet-connected drone project. The drone is bigger than a 737, but lighter than a car. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robot Returns from International Space Station and Sets Two Guinness World Records

Robot Returns from International Space Station and Sets Two Guinness World Records

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Mar. 27, 2015) The companion robot "Kirobo" returns to earth from the International Space Station and sets two Guinness World Records. Sharon Reich reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Bracelet Changes Design With the Touch of a Button

Smart Bracelet Changes Design With the Touch of a Button

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 27, 2015) Interactive jewellery that allows users to change designs and doesn&apos;t need charging. Sharon Reich reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Twitter's Periscope New Rival for Meerkat

Twitter's Periscope New Rival for Meerkat

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 26, 2015) Twitter has unveiled Periscope, its live-streaming app to rival Meerkat and other emerging apps that have captured the attention of the social media industry. Bobbi Rebell reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins