I feel it is time for me to enter into this discussion. There are
two sides to every tale, and this is certainly one of them.
We do not have to leave the US to find less than reputable dealers.
It is not endemic to any other country in this world. there is good
and bad all over.
There are many ways to protect yourself from scams, first is to be
aware! Do your homework, contact the official Tourist Bureau for the
country you are entering, TOT in Thailand. Ask for references to
shops or stone dealers with integrity. Know what you are looking
for, focus on your quest and do not allow yourself to get led
I have spent much time in Thailand between 1963 and 1984, I love the
country and its people. I did not go off on my own and only dealt
with reputable shops. I knew when I went off the beaten path and
went to morning markets, or flea markets, there was a chance what
appeared to be silver, may not be at all. I bought for the ethnic
styles of the mountain folk with no expectations of first quality. I
was interested in what was created by the hands of the people.
It pains me to see places maligned in such a general manner. We are
responsible for ourselves, we need not be led by outrageous claims,
this is where greed steps in. It is “buyer Beware” no matter where.