The Answer Center is your place to ask fellow eBay Community members questions about buying and selling on eBay, and for you to share your best information, tips, and insights to help other members get answers to their own questions.
Meet other eBay Community members who share your interests and passions.
Groups are a great place to connect with other community members who share similar interests. Give support, share information, and connect with fellow members. Create or join a Group today!
The latest news and updates affecting eBay buyers and sellers
The single source of information for new and professional sellers
Our policies are designed to create a safe and fair environment for all eBay members. Learning what’s allowed can help you avoid unintentionally breaking the rules and helps everyone in working with reliable, trustworthy members.
08-13-2016 08:03 AM
An even quicker way to tell aside from the obvious quality difference will be the barcode for each disc. Flip one of the discs over and around the inside of each will be a barcode if it has the name of the series and not just a random series of numbers it is fake. The newest discs are even easier to tell with a dual set of barcodes.
Good luck to all with your dvd purchases, but after getting burned once or twice I'm out.
12-04-2015 04:03 PM
Here is a good link: http://r.ebay.com/v3TST0. I purchased some authentic DVD sets to compare against the fake ones. The differences in quality is rather interesting. Some fakes are almost impossible to tell unless you anaylize the actual disks with the Nero program, while others are very obvious. So anyone buying on eBay should immediately test their DVDs with the Nero Infotool.
09-23-2015 03:11 AM
09-17-2015 11:04 AM
Your link is no longer valid. See my 12-04-2012 post for alternative methods to test for DVD authenticity. Also when you sell a DVD make sure you include a link to this very thread. Those selling bootleg DVD's certainly don't want buyers to know how to determine if their DVD's are really legit.
09-15-2015 04:42 PM
I recently purchased DVD set of Big Bang Theory Season 8. When I received it, it just didn't look right. The outside box looked fine but the discs looked amateurish, the special features were all stacked on the last disc and I don't think were all there. On doing some reasearch, I found this page: http://www.ebay.com/gds/Counterfeit-DVDs-how-to-sp
Needless to say I will no longer buy TV box sets on eBay. Is getting a fake set really worth a few dollars off? Of the three that I bought in the last few weeks, I requested refund/returns on all of them. Two sellers simply refunded my purchase price with no comment, but the third hasn't responded and I will have to involve eBay and/or PayPal.
08-08-2015 02:02 PM
01-28-2015 05:08 PM
I recently purchased the Batman complete series DVD set which turned out to be a bootleg. I was able to tell because I had a copy of the legitimate release of the same item. I didn't open the item but could tell from the print quality of the outer box. Mainly the bar code, which when looking at it through a magnifying glass or loop you can see that the edges of the black lines were jagged. Other ways of telling was that the small print (copyright info) was not bright white, but muted and difficut to read, The flat colors of the box were grainy as well. Really difficult to tell at first glance, but when looking really close you can tell. Needless to say i did not open the box.
12-28-2014 02:21 AM
You've been given some good advice here. As a run down, if the the cover is different than its official release or if it claims to be "special edition" but there is no word of a special edition version of the release, it's most likely a bootleg. If the artwork is crummy, probably a bootleg. If a more plain font (bold Arial, bold Calibri... a font that's easily found on Microsoft Word) everywhere, it's most likely a bootleg. Once you get the possible bootleg, take a look at the back cover. If it doesn't have the date it was released at the bottom in all the small text (like, for example, 2006) and all that jazz, it's probably a bootleg. If it doesn't list the region at all, that is a major major sign. Now open it up. If you've got a full series DVD boxset and the printing on the discs looks very low quality and it's the same for every disc, it's probably a bootleg. Read close on what the text says on the discs. If there are ANY grammatical errors and misspellings, that is one of the biggest signs. Now turn it over. Is the disc any color other than silver? Probably a bootleg. If, in the inner ring of the DVD, it says anything like "[show name] Disc [enter number]" instead of a bunch of numbers or bar codes, it's a bootleg.
I just found out last night that I had a bootlegged copy of the complete series of That 70's Show. I picked it up at a thrift store in New Mexico on a roadtrip. The packaging looked very authentic, so of course I was excited. I don't remember what I payed for it but it was pretty cheap. Anyway, I came home from the roadtrip and opened up the box and there were two thin, flimsy black cases which kinda weirded me out but I didn't care. The discs were also kinda falling out of the cases but the item was also "used" so I figured that the person who had it before me wasn't very careful with it. There were very very very light scratches on the back of the DVDs so I thought it was the real deal. I put it in my DVD player, and it didn't play. My DVD player had been acting up generally even before purchasing these bootlegged DVDs so I thought it was just my DVD player.
I pulled out another DVD player, and popped it in. Still didn't work. I tried every DVD in that stupid bootlegged box set. None of them worked, whereas every other DVD I own worked in that DVD player. So I was thinking, hmm, maybe it's a different region? So I looked on the back cover. It said it only plays in the USA and Canada, but didn't directly list it as being Region 1. So I became very skeptical. Then I took a really really good look at the disc. And, well... take a look for yourself.
There's a bunch of problems here. The photo quality of this is terrible. It also titles the show as "THAT 70 SHOW", and then the gibberish going around the disc says "Thisdvd Is For Drivate Home Use Only.it Is Not Licensed For Any Poher Resetive And Horized Dectarmance. Broadastiong Or Coping Is A Vioation Of Applicable Laws". I'm not sure who thought that made clear sense. It says this on all the discs. And on the back, it's certainly a silver disc, but it says nothing but "THAT 70 SHOW DISC 5".
Since it wouldn't play in my DVD player, I put it in my computer. I don't remember exactly what the driver said, but I know it said "NEW" at the end. Then it only had "AUDIO_TS" and "VIDEO_TS" listed. I looked at the video section to see what it had, and it only had three videos listed. One was the main menu, which had the episodes listed oddly although the menu's design looked authentic, and the other was a three hour file of the episodes. I was already completely conviced this was a bootleg, but I was like wow, wonder what kind of quality these episodes are in. So I opened it. Most of them were taken from a VHS recording from a Canadian network, and had the network's logo in the bottom right. Just like how it would look if it were recorded on VHS. The audio quality was very warm, as well.
I'm still mad about this since this is the first time I've ever been bootlegged, so I'm not getting up to take a photo of the cover art. It had Kelso and Hyde's heads on it and it said "So authentic, it'll give you the munchies." It looked very authentic. I was stupid and had never researched it previously. If I do remember correctly, though, there WERE other DVDs that had no insert at all in that store. I would say that this one was just a rotten apple in a bunch, but I feel like there was some serious bootleg work going on there. I don't know. I looked for this bootleg everywhere on the internet and it was no where.
I don't understand why people have to bootleg. It is so rude and illegal and disgusting. I can't believe I got duped like that. It also mentioned "new and improved DVD-9 technology" and I honestly was so clueless that I was like, hey, okay! I wish I knew about this before so I would have asked them if it were indeed a That 70's Show bootleg. Like, I know now, but I wish I knew then. I guess now I've learned from my mistakes.
I hope you got something out of this. You just need to be very, very observant. Ask the seller for photos, and generally stay away from sellers who use stock photos as the item's photo.
12-09-2014 09:18 AM
12-09-2014 09:16 AM
Maybe they are getting better at this, it's easy enough to title a disc before it is being burned. I have had recent experience with two sets of DVDs, one of which I actually already had the original copies of. Both were identified correctly in my computer.
Another bootleg tip off is that I have never seen a bootleg DVD that has any metadata. Metadata is the embedded information that IDs the disc on your computer. Every bootleg I have seen states "unknown disc" is you try to play it in WMP.
07-04-2014 09:47 PM
Also if u ever see in the item description (Disc only) is a huge red flag....unless your looking under the used or prior owned section then id say if u get it home & the artwork looks fuzzy on the disc or it has the obvious rainbow coloring on the under side..i see the tell tale "disc only" from numerous sellers....it makes me sick that i have to sift thru all the fake garbage just to get a genuine "Real" article these days (I wish Ebay would get its act together and when these people are reported because of bootlegs they should be banned for life via thier (identification) & brought up on federal charges....
06-16-2014 12:59 PM
Sad that FBI doesn't care. Despite how many movie studios knew about bootlegs and do nothing.
In fact, I think that all movie studios should sell them themselves not through middlemens or whatever. Cut down the bottlegs that way.
I bought lots of Walt Disney DVDs a few years ago only to find out they are knockoffs. My niece is a jounalist and knew how to detect which are bootlegs, knockoffs, etc. Mostly she said it is easy as knockoffs tend to have some smells and also she check technology on DVD and notice it is not the same as the originals.
Since then I no longer buy DVDs on eBay. Sad that the criminals continue to find ways to dupe many of us and eBay is NOT helping alot! eBay is ALL about getting $$$, never mind if breaking laws, is what it seems to me.
06-06-2014 01:08 PM
I bought a dvd once and the movie itself played fine. Went to hit special features and it did nothing. Click click nothing. So I was about to go send a message to the seller that my dvd was messed up. But then I looked real close at the case itself. The artwork was printed on plain copy paper.
I don't really remember what I did as this was years ago. But I got my money back and got to keep the counterfeit movie. Honestly I think the seller just returned my money and ebay didn't get involved.
05-17-2014 01:39 AM
03-04-2014 01:52 PM
I recently ordered what turned out to be a bootleg copy of the Sopranos Complete Series box set on eBay. It was $64 + free shipping (which should have given it away immediately). Unfortunately, I only did my research on bootlegs *after* ordering. I was disappointed and frustrated enough to immediately go out to Best Buy and purchase an authentic copy for $200. Unfortunately, the outside packaging of the bootleg set is nearly identical to that of the real; the biggest differences are noticable only once the set has been opened. If you are considering buying a set on eBay, you should insist that the seller post pictures of the DVDs themselves, including close-ups of the undersides of the discs, for reasons that I will explain below.
Since I had both the fake and the real sets (before returning the bootleg), I decided to take some comparison pictures and post them here in order to help others avoid making the same mistake I did, and to aid people in identifying bootlegs that they may already have purchased. The following photos illustrate the differences between the two sets; the fake/bootleg copy is on the left or on the bottom in all pictures.
A summary of the major differences:
1) The dead giveaway is that the bootleg DVDs come individually wrapped in thin plastic sleeves. The authentic DVDs do not.
2) The undersides of the bootleg DVDs have the season and disc number spelled out around the holographic center. The authentic DVDs have bar codes and numbers in the same place.
3) The bootleg DVDs are all primarily shades of green or grey, and are different colors than their authentic counterparts, which come in a wider variety of colors (one color per season).
Hope this helps.
11-20-2013 12:08 AM
The markup on New or recent Dvds is so small that if you see an inexpensive box-set, it is probably a bootleg.
Also, if you see a DVD that has an identical cover to it's VHS release, it is usually a bootleg. It is often a bootleg of a movie or show that hasn't made it on to DVD yet.