You may have read the story about an “antique violin” and PayPal recently. It appears that a lady named Erica sold a violin (advertised on Ebay) worth approximately $2,500 to a buyer in Canada. The buyer used PayPal to pay Erica for it. However, Erica never got the money because, before PayPal paid her, the buyer claimed the violin was a fake, even though it was accompanied by a certificate of authenticity by a well-known Australian expert. PayPal agreed to return the money to the buyer but insisted that he destroy the “fake” violin (above shown) before it did so. The buyer then obediently destroyed the violin and subsequently got his $2,500 returned to him. Erica, of course, will never see her violin in one piece again. To be fair, PayPal said it was merely applying its policies in this matter, even if they did immediately side with the buyer and not the seller who had actual proof that the violin was genuine. Erica was quoted as saying that "In the violin market, labels often mean little and there is often disagreement over them. Some of the most expensive violins in the world have disputed labels, but they are works of art nonetheless." Even if Erica’s violin was a very, very cheap violin by professional standards, she was lucky the disputed label was not attached to a Strad – not that anyone would sell one through Ebay or transact the payment through Paypal, of course. Cheap as it was, I hope Erica’s violin was insured.