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This article was published on December 13, 2018

Redditor spots murderers on NBA trading card

Redditor spots murderers on NBA trading card
Tristan Greene
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Tristan Greene

Editor, Neural by TNW

Tristan is a futurist covering human-centric artificial intelligence advances, quantum computing, STEM, physics, and space stuff. Pronouns: Tristan is a futurist covering human-centric artificial intelligence advances, quantum computing, STEM, physics, and space stuff. Pronouns: He/him

A Redditor recently recognized what appears to be Lyle and Erik Menendez, brothers convicted of murdering their father and stepmother, in the background of an NBA trading card. News spread quickly in the collector’s community prompting a rush on eBay, where the company’s dubious take-down strategy has listers scratching their heads.

The card, a 1990-1991 season NBA Hoops Mark Jackson, shows two young men who bear a striking – if not irrefutable – resemblance to the notorious killers. And the timeline works perfectly, so there’s every reason to believe this is legitimate.

As Beckett, a well-known source for trading card information, points out:

In the span between the killings and their arrest, the Menendez brothers went on a massive spending spree, buying cars, Rolex watches, taking trips and, apparently, courtside tickets at Madison Square Garden.

And that’s where the 1990-91 Hoops Mark Jackson card gets a little added notoriety. The timeline of the photo falls in that window from after the murder and before the arrest. Jackson’s knee brace is something he wore during the 1989-90 season.

Redditor u/Pirate Redbeard appears to be the person who first noticed the brothers in the background of the card. They posted an image of the card to the site’s r/InterestingAsFuck feed (which truly lives up to its name).

Credit: Reddit

In the wake of the post’s popularity collectors scrambled to see if their New York Knicks binder just got a little more valuable, and eBay erupted with listings.

Unfortunately for those listers eBay has a somewhat dodgy take-down policy. It looks like any listing that directly mentioned the Menendez brothers is at risk for removal (though many remain up at the time of this article’s publishing) , while those that don’t are being left up.

Worse, some language in take-down notices appears to indicate that those listing their items with “Menendez” in the title have been asked not to resubmit them.

Whether or not you agree with eBay’s stance against listing items which belonged to or are associated with murderers, it seems frustrating for listers who aspire to sell within the agreed-upon rules, only to see them applied incongruously.

It’s confusing, for example, that Aaron Hernandez listings remain up. He was a professional football player for the New England Patriots who was convicted of first-degree murder. Every card he’s on features a murderer in the foreground.

We’ve reached out to eBay for comment and will update if we receive a response.

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