PSA is not the keeper of the knowledge in this hobby.
The collectors are.
At the moment neither the collectors nor PSA (?) have the answer...
PSA graders are collectors too (I know 2 big collectors that once were psa professional graders).
But I basically agree with you.
The question has already been answered. See the previous page.
There is absolutely no physical distinction between an original winner's copy and the Vending series copy. Both were printed on the same glossy card stock and both have the exact same everything.
To demonstrate how all over the place PSA is, I literally just Google Image Searched "Vending Series Mr. Mime PSA" and these are the images that came up:
Same PSA label, but one is clearly the Vending series card and the other is clearly the Quick Starter gift set card.
The simple fact is that PSA is completely helpless in being able to distinguish the difference between an original winner's copy, a Vending Series copy, and a gift set copy.
But of course, no one can distinguish an original winner's copy from a Vending Series copy (PSA used to think they could but have since learned that they cannot do so, which is why they will no longer slap an Illustration Contest label on it).
After knowing that the winner has posted a photo of her Illustrator and the glossy Mr. Mime, it is like trying to distinguish a 2007 Battle Road TOP 3 Mysterious Pearl from a Winter Challenge Mysterious Pearl. They are literally the same cards unless they come from a winners' case (or from the Illustrator winners in the Mr. Mime case).