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Can experts be prejudiced by other experts?


jacklinks
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The other thread on certifications made me wonder this ... If an instrument previously has had certification(s) performed and “papers” obtained, does the next expert look at the previous papers as part of his/her evaluation? Or is it common practice to not tell the current expert about previous certifications so that they can analyze an instrument completely independently with a “blank slate” and avoid possibly being prejudiced by a previous opinion ? 

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If there's pressure there might be more pressure to diss an old certificate than to confirm it, unless it is written by a top recognized expert. Seems like the current trend is to boo hoo the expertise of all the old top experts, but that could be just because we know a lot more about authenticating genuine instruments than we did 50 or 100 yrs ago, and we have things like dendrochronology to add to the picture.

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Old papers are part of the history of a violin, so they do have significance. An expert will make a determination based on his own opinion of an instrument, but having an established history increases the likelihood of positive identification. If a violin has no track record, an expert is more likely to decline to authenticate it. The stakes are high, so someone whose opinion carries that much authority is going to be very selective in what they’ll certify. 
 

Some makers are easy to identify, but many fine old violins are harder to positively identify, partly because of the working style of the maker, partly due to things like wear, repairs, or replaced parts. It’s in your best interest to provide all the information you have to the expert. That doesn’t guarantee that the new opinion will match the old one, but it increases the chance that you might end up with a certificate.

Something that separates the experts at the highest level from everyone else is their avoidance of anything they can’t concretely identify.

 

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The OP question is unspecific. There are all sorts of different situations, where one might be expected to express an opinion on an instrument. When giving an opinion for a court, for instance, one would be obliged to give ones judgement on all previous opinions, however ridiculous

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Thank god I have my drawer full of "certified by Jacob Saunders"  certs along with all the others, and all that special forgery paper that I use for my fake labels. So that way when I take my Markievarius into to get a "new" appraisal and update it for a grift er' sale that is, I'll have all the "expert" certification I need to fool the average ebay sucker. 

Forging certifications of living "experts" , it's the other white meat of fake labeling   
 

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21 minutes ago, jezzupe said:

Thank god I have my drawer full of "certified by Jacob Saunders"  certs along with all the others, and all that special forgery paper that I use for my fake labels. So that way when I take my Markievarius into to get a "new" appraisal and update it for a grift er' sale that is, I'll have all the "expert" certification I need to fool the average ebay sucker. 

Forging certifications of living "experts" , it's the other white meat of fake labeling   
 

If they are all “Saunders certified” as "dustbin ready", that will be all right:)

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12 minutes ago, Carl Stross said:

"Can experts be prejudiced by other experts?"

No. If they are, they're no experts. 

On the contrary, an “expert” who is to big headed/idle to grapple with previous “expertize” is a useless prick

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1 hour ago, jacobsaunders said:

If they are all “Saunders certified” as "dustbin ready", that will be all right:)

I would like one of these "dustbin ready" certificates please. Are you able to list 100 instruments on the one certificate? :lol: 

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6 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

On the contrary, an “expert” who is to big headed/idle to grapple with previous “expertize” is a useless prick

I was joking.

It seems my humor has become overly dry and ( I was told ) I need to use "emoji" . 

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13 hours ago, Mark Norfleet said:

Only if they’re human.

Like.

41 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

On the contrary, an “expert” who is to big headed/idle to grapple with previous “expertize” is a useless prick

Also like.

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5 hours ago, jezzupe said:

Thank god I have my drawer full of "certified by Jacob Saunders"  certs along with all the others, and all that special forgery paper that I use for my fake labels. So that way when I take my Markievarius into to get a "new" appraisal and update it for a grift er' sale that is, I'll have all the "expert" certification I need to fool the average ebay sucker. 

Forging certifications of living "experts" , it's the other white meat of fake labeling   
 

Machold's worth more on Markies.  Remember the Markie he was holding in his advertising photos?  :lol:

MacMarkie01.jpg.9549866b13c7923c5ab71b8333693b92.jpg

MacMarkie02.jpg.3c8c3dd41de481ab15cd5bf3b96ad906.jpg

Macholdl001.jpg.f5bb6f0a16d6bbb9fcc9913a97c3a4ad.jpg

MacholdDetail001.jpg.62cf0e6b91c4e7dd124de93564da4a80.jpg

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7 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

If they are all “Saunders certified” as "dustbin ready", that will be all right:)

yes your kinda like the pope, just wave you hand around and say "your saved my child" :)

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15 minutes ago, chrissweden said:

Anyone know what has become of Machold? He should be out of jail by now! 

Dietmar has been out of prison for ages. I haven’t noticed him in any respect, although his son, Lüder had an emetic article in the Süddeutsche Zeitung a while ago, which leaves one wondering what might happen next Porträt - Erste Geige - Gesellschaft - SZ.de (sueddeutsche.de)

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I'll take the question as serious.

My first experience bringing something to an expert was in 1971 to Moennig's. As soon as I walked in the door the person behind the counter saw my bow case and cert in hand and said "Don't say a thing", taking the bow and looking at it cold. At B&F I learned to never say "Look at this Xxxx" to anyone--just hand it over--and the protocol of looking at the back first to suggest a maker, then going to the top to see if the name still fit, and finally the head, and learned the evil of labels so well that now I often won't even remember to look at one that's there. I also learned to form an opinion early and to speak much later, a skill I note is lacking in the business where there can be a rush to show off what one knows.

In that protocol the cert and previous opinions don't factor in at all, and I have often seen people get thrown off by hearing too much too soon and being swayed. So I'm not going to say that it's not possible to get thrown off by a previous opinion, but a good expert will protect himself from that by staying away from that information as long as possible, until he's fully formed his own opinion.

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