I recently purchased Seasons 1 - 5 of the Dexter series on EBay. Got them, and they screamed bootleg to me. I think they are EXTREMELY GOOD bootlegs (professional grade even!) but bootlegs none the less. Is there any way to tell for sure? I am a seller as well, and am very honest about everything I sell, and always expect that in return. They look like they were printed on an extremely good printer and are in some flimsy cheap placstic cases (inside the nice exterior 'box'. Any help would be appreciated!
Every DVD I've bought BRAND NEW on ebay in the past 3 years has been a FAKE, a Knock-Off.
I contacted the FBI about this because I have to watch their Warning before dvd content. The FBI couldn't care less. It appears that we who shop ebay must police this because ebay won't; it would cut into their profits; and, afterall that's all they care about.
How can you detect A FAKE DVD?
1. Packaging. If the celophane is loose it's not authentic.
2. Cover-art & Disk-art. If it's faded or blury, or words don't seem right, it's a fake.
3. Disk playing surface. If there are scratches/scuffs it's a fake. Authentic DVDs look like a mirror with NO defects. Even Best-buy, Target, and other retailers sell knock-offs.
Fakes should be returned to seller and FEEDBACK left to allert others that this person is selling FAKES. Far too few ebayers leave NEGATIVE FEEDBACK for Cheating Sellers.
boilermaker1970 = These are My Rules & I stick by them.
It seems like a lost cause if the police could care less. In that case if you dont want a bootleg I suggest you ask the seller first and if they say its not a Bootleg and send you a bootleg anyway than you should leave negative feedback and report them. I know I would hate to pay full price for a Dvd that I thought was real. I probably would file a complaint and get my money back. Me personally dont mind bootleg if its just like a real movie, very clear and cheap. But I would never pay the same price that I pay for a real movie for a bootleg. Bootlegs should be way cheaper.
How about, how can you tell a fake dvd before you bid/buy it?!
• TV series boxed sets are popular bootlegs.
• Boxed sets with a price too good to be true.
• Star Treks are extremely popular series bootlegs!
• Check a reliable site to see if the entire series has even been released yet.
• Does the seller have a UPC in the "Item Specifics"? If so google it and/or enter it in Search on Amazon, see what comes up. But they're getting smarter and adding the correct one anyway sometimes.
• Does the cover art in the picture match up with what's available legally?
• Do their completed listings show many of the same set, all saying in the description "got as a gift, never used" or something fishy.
• Brand new sellers with multiple listings of the same dvds. (May not be bootlegs, just a rip-off artist!)
Sometimes the bootleg dvds are a different color underneath. A regular dvd (all the ones I have seen) have a nice clean look that looks like glass, but the bootleg discs have a purple color underneath them. I'm sure not all bootleg dvds are not the same but just wanted to give my knowledge to everyone.
I've actually been looking at the same dvds wondering how the seller can list so many copies on ebay. I just purchased season 1 and 2 of justified and i think they look fake as well.
Buy the DVDs or Blu-Rays from a legitimate store chain or a legitimate online store if you're worried about bootleg copies. You should also consider buying an Apple TV and buy or rent the digital versions of your favorite movies and tv shows if you want to save space around your home. iTunes offer discounts for TV shows and movies a lot cheaper than DVD and Blu-Ray disks. I bought the first two seasons of the Sopranos for $19.99 each, first two seasons of Fringe for $24.99, third season of Fringe for $19.99, and the first season of Falling Skies for $7.99 all in Standard Definition. I never buy DVDs and Blu-Rays from eBay because they might be bootlegs unless if I'm looking for a rare tv show or movie like "Romance of the Three Kingdoms" tv series and I'm currently looking for the Blu-Ray version of Akira.
If you have to ask, it's a bootleg :-)
Watch out for "ipcb123" http://myworld.ebay.com/ipcb123/?_trksid
I just got sucked into a crappy burnt DVD bootleg of matches he rips straight off of filming his tv playing the exclusive and expensive cable channel Setanta Sports.
I guess you can tell because they never include a picture of the cover and never describe the condition of the item.
The way I can tell a boot leg CD is if the CD is hand written with a sharpie on a recordable CD that usually screams bootleg to me!
Currently bootleg DVD's are so good that you could easily purchase a bootleg and not even know it. Although I've recently stopped buying DVD's on eBay, I do still sell them there. I test my discs for authenticity and post the test results along with the auction. When the buyer receives the discs he (or she) can duplicate the test to verify that the discs are indeed authentic. A secondary benefit is that the next time the buyer purchases a disc from another seller he now knows how to determine if *that* disc is authentic.
To test for bootlegs sometimes I use DvdInfoPro. 14 day trial at
Other times I use Dvd Decrypter to test for bootlegs, found at
For determining if a disc is a bootleg Dvd Decrypter is superior (and free). DvdInfoPro cost money but it is easier to interpret the results.
I have no interest is DvdInfoPro.
Great question! Let me try and help out because I have some experience from both sides of the fence.
On e bay is the upc listed? If not then ask for it. Take that number and google it. Compare that artwork with what you see on ebay look for subtitles fine print etc.
Once you have the item look at the case especially the hinge side (side that doesn't open. Bootlegs are poor in this area and the two pieces dont fit together well. Look on the back and make sure all the info is there rating etc.
Next look at the artwork. Under a glass it is always blurry especially for color speration.
finally look at the disc. As stated here it should have a mirror finish.
Hope this helps.
Just bought seasons 1-6 of Dexter from eBay...they are not playing in my Blu-Ray, once you click on play all there is broken noise but the screen doesn't actually change, DVD's themselves say DVD-r, are scratched a little, graphics on disc artwork is not like anything I have seen, slim cases, etc, etc. This is 4th time I have been burned in past few months on eBay. eBay needs to get a firmer grip on this type of non-sense.
I just got burned on a "genuine" Dexter seasons 1-6 boxset as well. Sounds exactly as you described, first and last time I buy any dvd on here. I keep hearing over 90% of dvds on here are fake. Sad.
Doctor Who is another show that is heavily bootlegged. I've been bitten a few times now. I was able to get a refund from one seller, waiting to hear back from another. Some of the boots are so well done, it's hard to tell the difference, but some are so sloppily made, it just screams fake. Here's a link to a vid on YouTube where a guy shows the difference between a bootleg he got as compared to a genuine set he bought elsewhere.
I keep hearing over 90% of dvds on here are fake. Sad.
Where do you hear THAT? :^O
Sorry if I scoff heartily at your quoted percentages. (*scoff, scoff*)
I've bought thousand of dvds of eBay over the years and never received a bootleg. I've bypassed listings that I could tell were bootlegs. Use the criteria we listed above, and like gorilla said see if they list the UPC and the Item Specifics. Though many bootleggers have started to add the correct UPC anyway, so that's not 100% effective, just one of many ways you need to protect yourself.
There's a seller selling a "Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella 1965" over and over again, without a label, claiming it was bought "FROM AN ONLINE VIDEO SELLER. I DID NOT BURN IT AT HOME!". Well of course it was, on an online site for bootlegs! :^O
Despite the warning signs and one negative for being a bootleg, people are still bidding $60-90.00 for it. ;(
I just purchased a Shakira music viveo DVD.As soon as I took it out of its mailer I thought BOOTLEG ! The cover art was funky and didn`t reall fit the cover wrapping over the side of the case. When I opened it and saw the disc the laser printing wasn`t that good and the disc appeared to not be fully recorded on.But when I put it in my blu-ray player it played showing it was a dvd-r disc.Proof positive it was a bootleg.There are several different sellers dealing with these bootleg dvd`s and when ask who produced it ...there answer vary from -no answer to "a manufacturer".They know what rhere selling and so do I !!!
Was it the "Shakira - Timeless" dvd? I can tell right away, it even has many of the warning signs we already mentioned.
It doesn't seem to exist on a legit site like Amazon.
No UPC in the Item Specifics
Region 0 (Not always a bootleg though)
The description even says "We have combined all of the great hit, rare, hard to find and classic videos for this great artist." Now if it's something you want I'd say keep it. I had to buy a Kate Bush music video dvd bootleg because they simply don't release them, and my Beta tape is worn out! :^O
I have to say thank you for the link to the youtube video of the bootleg Doctor Who DVD's. A couple years ago I bought the first 5 seasons on here and I didn't even question authenticity as they played just fine, even had the annoying BBC copyright warning that could not be skipped. I just watched that youtube video and got out the exact same DVD he was using as an example and mine is for sure one of the fake ones.
Even worse...I had already purchased series 5 at best buy so when the new "box set" came in the mail I turned around and sold the series 5 discs, so I accidentally sold someone else a bootleg version. Thats terrible!
I know the Dexter listings everyone is talking about because I almost purchased that set too but the excellent price was making me suspicious so I ended up buying used individual seasons from small sellers and I think they are authentic...but they could of bought them in a huge set on here too so who knows!?