Autograph Alert Truth
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January 26, 2010

The whole reason for starting this blog-site was to inform collectors on how to find real autographs and who sells them and who doesn’t. The first thing an attorney would do would be to show the credibility or lack there of, of the people who are selling authenticating and writing about autographs. In the first 6 months of this blog I believe I have shown who the bad guys are in the business. I have proven this with letters, documents, emails and pictures of fake items they have been selling. I have never cut apart emails or letters that were written and everything I have written has come from solid true facts. Others write by cutting up emails and making statements with nothing to back them up with. In the letters to the editor; these are letters from my readers on what THEY think, it has nothing to do with my opinion. I do have some pretty sharp readers though don’t I?

Now it’s a new year and it’s time to write about the good people in the business. What I will be doing is helping the readers find the best in the business. These will be dealers and authenticators that have ethics, stand behind their product and do the best they can to provide the buyer with authentic material. If some crazy story that may seem negative pops up once in a while so be it but it will be for a good reason if I write about it.

First let’s educate the buyer on dealers. One of the nice things about owning your own company is you don’t have to do business with anyone you don’t want to. What I mean by this is; if someone treats you wrong then you don’t have to work with them anymore. In my 20+ years of dealing autographs there have been a dozen or so real jerks that I won’t do business with anymore. This upsets them once they figure out they can’t find authentic autographs like I sell anywhere else. This isn’t like Ford where you can just go to another dealer and buy a truck. These are one of a kind items that may never come up for sale ever again. Good dealers also work together with other good dealers to help educate each other. Some like me even pass this on to my customers to better educate them. These are the people I will introduce you to. Some you may have never known about, some are very familiar names. Stay tuned as the first one will be posted this week. No dealer will know in advance who I am going to write about.

January 7, 2010

Mr. Epperson,

You claim to write nothing but the FACTS on your website. We suggest you do more research before you post comments about certain peopIe in the autograph community! Do you sense the sarcasm? Let me explain:

Foremost, we commend all the people coming out against steve koschal. Although this note does not directly relate to autographs, it will hopefully enlighten collectors to who they are dealing with in the industry.

I, like many of you, we had once trusted steve. I must warn all of you, he is an extremely unstable and vicious person. If you speak negatively about him, he will find out everything he can about you, your family and friends, and will either harm or harass you/them in some way. He has been extremely successful in doing this in the past, and believes he is above the law. For the most part, he has gotten away with it. Oh, except for when he threw several rocks through HIS OWN attorney's window in Montclair , NJ , and was eventually caught and arrested for it!

In addition to you, the autograph community that is standing up to him, the "cousin" that posted a thread on the internet had some information wrong about steve that we feel the need to correct: He did not leave his family "flat". On the contrary, he was physically removed by the police, from his house after his wife had a restraining order put against him in Verona , NJ . We're not sure if he settled up the child support that was due, but, as is evident by the still existing WARRANT out for his arrest in New Jersey, he owes his ex-wife hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The town of Verona has a hell of a file on Steve, ranging from violently beating his children while dragging them up and down the street in the middle of the night, to spraying mace on his daughter's bed and pillow, to harassing his entire neighborhood to the point where some of them had to move. Steve will deny this, as he denies that he even has three children!

You may also want to check his county of origin, Hudson County, NJ, to see the public file on steve. A few years ago, Steve harassed his own mother and father to the point where they had to file a complaint against him. I know the words his own mother used to describe him were “possibly in the need of psychiatric help due to his erratic behavior”.

As for his website, autographalert, we found an "article" (I guess you can call it) written by a so-called autograph dealer, Harris Schaller. Mr. Schaller starts the article by saying: “Let me introduce myself. My name is Harris Schaller. I’m a long time autograph dealer, starting back in the 1970’s. I was quite active up through the 1990’s as a member of the ethics board for the IACC/DA.”

He then states: “The recent attack against Koschal by Steve Cyrkin of Autograph magazine was enough to bring me out of retirement.”

This brings up a couple of interesting questions: If Mr. Schaller is a "long time" dealer, why is he INTRODUCING himself to the autograph community now? Has anyone ever done business with him or know his credentials? Asked him to authenticate something for you?  Has the IRS seen his tax return forms for his autograph business? Ever asked him how long he's known koschal, and the extent of their relationship?

For those of you who side with steve, we have some advice: RUN!!! We have known koschal for over thirty years and there is a reason that we are writing this, and there are reasons why others do as well. At one time, we were foolish enough to get caught in his web. LEARN FROM OUR MISTAKES! Is it really possible that so many of us in the autograph community are wrong about him? What about what the ex-attorneys, parents/family, girlfriends, business associates, police reports say?  Could they be all lies too? If you choose to ignore this, at least print it out, so one day you can re-read this and bang your head against the wall for not listening. Don’t become another fly in his web!

I'm sure that on his deathbed, this coward will spend his last few moments... alone, reflecting upon his life... and feel so proud of what he is.

January 5, 2010

Let’s hope the “autograph war” is finally ending and we can start the New Year on a positive note. 

2009 in autographs was really a pretty good year given the state of the economy.  What shocks me most though is that with the weak dollar why other countries are not the ones doing much of the buying.  Most every ‘high end” autograph has held or even gone up in value over the course of the last year and I don’t see it dropping in the years to come. 

In this report I’m going to do a “What’s Hot” and “What’s Not” in the autograph world.  I asked around and here is what I came up with;

What’s Hot!
In sports; very high end “legends” of the game career achievement autographs.

What’s Not!
In sports; post 1980’s mass signed items.

What’s Hot!
In entertainment; vintage, classic movie stars in character

What’s Not!
In entertainment; signed 8x10’s of current stars

What’s Hot!
In music; classic rock signed albums and photos

What’s Not!
In music; current pop and rap musicians

What’s Hot!

What’s Not!
Autograph Galleries

Let’s keep faith that the honest dealers and authenticators will prevail and the crooked and authenticators and forgers will fail in 2010!

My best to you!