Cowboy Banner, International School of Gemology, Robert James, World Gem Society,

The trouble isn't that there are too many fools, but that the lightning isn't distributed right.

Mark Twain

Robert James, our little cowboy at the International School of Gemology / World Gem Society doesn't take criticism very well. Way back in 2007, someone at had the temerity to suggest that his definition of fluorescence was "lacking." Bobby immediately opened up a can of whip-ass that went on for five full pages. You can view the entire carnage here:

YourGemologist goes Nuclear over the Definition of Fluorescence

This diamond ring doesn't shine for him anymore

Our little cowboy has a history of such online hijinks and histrionics. In 2001, the International School of Gemology headmaster cut a swath through the forums, showing a similar flair for generating intense anger in an otherwise pastoral setting:

YourGemologist Turns into a Ring of Fire

YourGemologist Goes Ballistic and Then Tells the Others to 'Take a Red'

From his books and newsletters, we know the man is certainly no Shakespeare, and yet he even had the audacity to tell one poor soul that if she wanted to complain, she should at least learn to spell:

YourGemologist Lectures on Spelling

This coming from the man who, in his 2012 Guide to Tucson Treated & Created Gems, misspelled quartz as "quarts" (p.  9). And, in a book where gems are arranged in alphabetical order, why does 'tourmaline' follow 'turquoise' and 'tsavorite' come before 'topaz'? And 'lamella twinning' is usually known as lamellar twinning (p.  10). It's not 'treackle', it's treacle (p.  26), it's not 'mollasses', it's molasses (p.  26), it's not 'magnificatio', it's magnification (p.  27). By the good graces of the Queen's English, the book is only 79 pages long and there are similar errors on almost every page! He leaves us completely gobsmacked. Cheeky bastard.

Same-same (but no different)

Considering the above, there were no surprises when Jeffery Bergman took on the daunting task of reviewing the 2012 Jewelers Guide to Treated & Created Gems. This volume, virtually identical to the Tucson guide above, was effectively the same punishing hangover, just a different lost weekend. See the Bergman review here:

The Bergman Review–Holy Moly!

For his trouble, Bergman got a background check, a review of his review posted on a website with a URL nearly identical to his own (but promoting James' World Gem Society) and the claim that the FBI would be investigating andesine (No! Down Satan!). If that were not enough, it was suggested that if Bergman didn't cap his poison pen, he would also be sued.

Bergman was also accused of violating the International School of Gemology's copyright. Here the ISG's YourGemologist ascended from the laughable into the pantheon of true comedic genius, as Robert James has a history of using the copyrighted materials of others without permission. Once when asked to stop using copyrighted images without permission, he stated:

"The Fair Use clause allows for copyrighted materials to be used in the cases of criticism, etc…..

"The US constitution may not apply in Tibet or Switzerland, but it is still enforced here in San Antonio, Texas.

"I have refused based on our rights under Section 107 of US Title 17. And will refuse further threats and demands accordingly."

Now we understand. It's okay for the International School of Gemology's Robert James to use others' copyrighted materials for criticism, but not for Bergman to do the same. That clears it right up.

Rollin' rollin' rollin'

If one takes anything else away from the above, it should now be crystal clear that we are dealing with someone who, in our opinion, apparently skipped both ethics and morals class. Oh, and perhaps also chemistry (listed the formula of turquoise as CuAlH20 and beryl as BeAlSio2) physics (definition of fluorescence) and geography (couldn't tell the difference between Inner Mongolia, a Chinese province, and Mongolia, a country).

It's clear. In the best tradition of Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Bakker and Ted Haggard, there is apparently one rule for YourGemologist, and another for the rest of us. But fret not. Should you find yourself in Bobby's cross-hairs, take heart. Our little cowboy is what they call in the Texas vernacular:

All hat and no cattle



About us

gobsmacked gang, International School of Gemology, Robert James, World Gem Society,

We are the Gobsmacked Gang, those who cannot believe the things that spring from the mouth of the International School of Gemology's Robert James, the Mr. Bean of the gemmological world. Please note that the Gobsmacked Gang has nothing to do with what appears to be yet another Robert James attack site, which is designed to hurt someone making an honest attempt at teaching gemmology. Once again, as is copiously detailed on our Files page, James reveals what an evil little spawn he is. We would pray for his soul, but there is no evidence he has one. Thus we suggest a career change. A man like this certainly belongs in the Trump administration.




"If I were to catch any of my ISG Registered Gemologists or Registered Gemologist Appraisers trying to pull the stunts that you are pulling on eBay, I would pull their diplomas, publicly expel them from the ISG, and personally make sure that they did not work again in this industry with anything but a broom in their hand."

— Robert James

"They [the insurance industry] do not take kindly to frauds being perpetrated on consumers."

— Robert James

Read about the Robert James eBay fraud in our article here.