Vintage: Is it possible to be a scalper of vintage toys?

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There's been a lot of discussion about scalpers lately, and I'm not sure I understand the defensiveness about calling some vintage dealers "scalpers." If you object to the term in general, on the grounds that its origins date to prejudices against American Indians, I could understand. But why this insistence that a vintage dealer cannot be a "scalper"? A scalper, according to the OED, is
a) one who buys and sells unused portions of railroad tickets at LESS than face value.
b) one who sells stock at LOWER than official prices.
c) a speculator who obtains tickets for a popular entertainment and sells them for MORE than their face price.

I assume that when we say "scalper" in reference to any collectible dealer, we mean a corrupted version of c). (Since we are already corrupt, we should, perhaps, not be so anxious to chastise others for their choices when applying the term). In this case, all dealers are scalpers because all are selling at higher than face value. If you consider "face value" in 2001 to mean current "market value," then many dealers are still selling at far higher than current market value and are, therefore, scalpers. However, I think both of these definitions miss the central point about scalping. To scalp in the sense that we have been using it is American slang, not English, so let's look at Webster's:
3b: to resell at greatly increased prices.

Now I ask you, are some of these dealers, buying so that they can resell at greatly increased prices? Absolutely. In my opinion, this definition reaches the heart of the matter. When we talk about someone "scalping," tickets or toys or anything else, we generally mean someone who buys low and sells extremely high, betting that because of high demand and ignorance, people will pay their exorbitant prices. In this case, many vintage dealers are, sadly, scalpers.

This brings me back to my original point. The word itself has an ugly origin. So perhaps we should refer to these dealers, vintage and new, simply as "rip-off-artists," or "scum-bags," or...well... you get the idea.

Please note that I am in no way singling out Brians Toys. I think he's much better (at least on the vintage stuff) than most.

[ 02-01-2002: Message edited by: flarida ]
 
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The whole scalper/non-scalper etc thing has been beat to death on the other NG's. (ie. RASSCM) I would hate to see this forum reduced to more of this mindless BS.

Bill

(besides... this IS the vintage forum... right ??)
 
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*edit* I stopped hanging out at the POTJ folder because 50% of the posts were about the scalper nonesense.

*edit* Please refrain from using offensive language.



[This message has been edited by flarida (edited 06-09-2001).]
 
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There's evil in every profession. Buy from whom seems most reasonable, don't look back, and enjoy your toys.
 
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I would define a scalper as: One who buys items in the primary market to sell at a higher price on the secondary market.

This works for sporting tickets, collectibles and other things. And by this definition it is impossilbe to scalp vintage because it is no longer in the primary market - it's all in the secondary market.

IMO, the general "evil" of scalping is not in the buying, selling and making money - heck *everyone* does that. Walmart does that, no one calls them scalpers. The problem with scalping is when a person removes the ability of the general public to buy items from the first outlet available to them - such as at the ticket booth for the big game.

So by this definition dealers (of vintage) can never be scalpers because they're not taking away your right to buy things from the original source.

Cj
 
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For me, there are only TWO prices for vintage...

...the price I WILL pay for an item, and the price I will NOT pay for an item because I believe it is too expensive.

Cj is dead right. In the true sence of the word, vintage has no "scalpers" because they keep no retail product from reaching the public at a normal retail value. However, lots of people sell stuff I cannot afford. Those sellers simply do not recieve my buisness - that is the choice I make.

Vintage SW collecting is a FUN hobby - let's all work to keep it that way here on these Forums. Posts about "scalpers" or politically correct language only work to
divide our great community here.
 
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Well said jedi junior. Thats the big difference between vintage and new collectors. Vintage collectors are a more laid back and content sort. You rarely see us getting very angry, its all about the love of Star Wars and the toys. I personally think that just new collectors would do themselves a great favor by ignoring scalpers and not letting them get to them, its just not worth it.
 
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In my opinion, for someone to be a "scalper" in the POTF2 collector's sense of the term, he has to purchase items at retail and sell them at a markup. By doing this, he prevents collectors from finding the items at retail because he sucks up the entire supply.

This is why there is no way someone who sells vintage items can be a scalper at this point in time. There is no retail market for vintage items; everything that's changing hands is doing so entirely on a secondary market, where the prices are necessarily determined by demand and *everything* is sold at above original retail.

Of course, if you want to be extremely anal about your definitions, you can accuse someone who bought carded figures for $2.99 in 1982 and is now selling them for $50.00 each of being a "scalper." But you have the remember that the collectibles market was entirely different in the '80s. In all probability, the guy who does this didn't originally buy the figures to sell for profit down the road. Very few people were thinking like that at that point in time.

Personally, I think the anti-scalper fervor is a plague on the entire Hasbro collecting hobby. Scalping is never going to go away, no matter how much people complain about it, and it's present everywhere (ever try to get World Series tickets?).

Yes, I know it's a pain to deal with, and I don't love the practice. But there are seriously people who let their anti-scalper stance define their entire existence within the hobby. They form clubs dedicated to stopping scalpers, when they discuss the hobby it's all about scalping. The hobby never sounds like it's fun to these people.

People need to help one another find figures (like many already do) and relax a little. They'll find the stuff they want eventually. But if you're going to complain non-stop about scalping, you might as well do the same about taxes. It's pointless.
ron
 
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I've been thinking about this lately, and I think that the "anti-scalper" leauge has found what makes the hobby fun for them. Discussing, arguing, etc is what they enjoy.
New SW stuff is prime target for scalping because it's a hobby populated by impatient people that want to spend money on toys. As you say, it will be there for as long as there is a profit in it.
 
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Responding to the original post, uh.. we all know what a scalper is dude so whatever.
 
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I don't know. I think you can scalp vintage stuff to an extent, it's just not as cut and dry and clear as scalping new stuff. The SKU's on new figures till ring up at set prices in stores, say $6.00 each. So when a "scalper" gets those, ALL he can get his hands on in ALL the stores he hits, and then tries to sell them for triple or more retail, that's legitimately scalping. But scalping vintage is a little muddier, since original retail was about $3.00 most times back in the day, and now if someone sold vintage mint complete figures for $9.00 that would be a steal in almost all cases! They're all worth over $10.00 each mint loose complete. But then there's the common book values that most people use. People tell me I shouldn't expect or try to get common average book value for the ones I'm selling. Well. Why not? SOMEONE came up with those numbers for values and they didn't just pull them out of their nose. Some of them are high and some are low, but if you average the book values for a figure together I think that it's still a fair and accurate value of what loose vintage figures should get if they are complete with authentic accessories and mint, or on a mint card and bubble. For example. A totally mint white Stormtrooper with authentic black gun and tight arms and legs I think is VERY deserving of $17.00 at least. Because you just don't find them like that every day, especially with NO black paint missing, and NO yellowing whatsoever. And that black gun is harder to get sometiems. Just because people want it for $10.00 doesn't mean that's a fair price for it. There's a reason they started selling for around $17.00 in that condition. Secondary market skews it since on ebay, the same two identical items might sell for three or more times apart from each other. That doesn't mean that the cheaper one is closer to the more accurate value than the expensive one. Just means someone got a really great deal. In the real world you have to pay for what you get, and in most places in the real world you have to pay what things are REALLY worth, not what you'd like to pay. Therefore, if someone will pay more than I paid for the vintage figures I'm selling. That's great. I don't ever ask over average book prices. But I refuse to sell them for less than what I paid. Especially for $8.00 each or something. My answer to people who tell me "but I saw such and such with such and such for only $8.00". "Good for you, go get it. Mine is $15.00 and I just about guarantee you that mine is better condition than your $8.00 you get from such and such. If you get mine, you won't be upgrading in a year when you are disappointed with the cheap one". That's just how I do things. And it seems fair. If people are trying to sell a loose mint white complete vintage Stormtrooper for $30.00 or more and screw someone on the deal knowingly, they're definitely a breed of scalper in my opinion. At the very least they're a jerk who needs a real life. That's why I got sick of the tables at the toy shows because it was not much more than scalperville in many cases. But asking $17.00 or so for the same figure is fair I think. People shouldn't be expected to sell for less just to appease those who want a something for nothing deal. But they should know what they have and respect fair market value, which is most accurately found by adding up all the book values for loose mint, and averaging them out, lowering them to compensate for individual paint wear or missing accessories on a figure by figure basis. That's how I do it anyway and in two years of selling these off, I've sold over 200, and only two people have complained. One said he never got them, and when I reported it to the PO, I never heard from him again, and the other guy tried to rip me off and was pissed cause it didn't work so he complained about the figures. There are definitely scalpers of vintage stuff, but just because someone wants a fair deal for their figures, IF their condition warrants it, doesn't make them a scalper if they're unwilling to sell for $8.00 each. People need to learn to pay what things are worth sometimes and be fair on both sides. They wouldn't want to sell so low if they knew what they had was worth more.

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OK you guys here in this forum are great people and have some awesome collections and great knowledge on the vintage world.

To aurgue the real term of a scalper is dumb. Guys dont give me this crap about "vintage" cant be scalped, this allows them to get away with it. Make it clear that vintage holds a value and that some people pay what they want to. THERE ARE VINTAGE SCALPERS. Scalping is a form of making money to support what ever habit one may have. The scalpers that everyone hates is the ones that deal items on a daily basis. You can sale a carded figure for a nice amount, that is not your fault. The buyer is the one that supported that. However if you are strictly selling them all the time and your price exceeds a normal price guide value on a normal basis, IS SCALPING. I dont know how many times I have to say this, ANYTHING CAN BE SCALPED. Stop giving us this crap about it being non-scalpable, so one can get away with it more.

Its simply this: Buy what you want at what you want. A person that sales ANYTHING can be a scalper. A scalper can also have great deals (mostly never), but can sale an item below retail. They are still scalpers. Shut up about this subject already and face the facts about people that sale items for a living are scalpers. When you argue the fact, you make yourself either look ignorant or you are trying to cover your own a$$ from this term. Knock it off and go about your business. Im sick of it and sick of those damn scalpers. Now lets get back to this hobby of enjoyment.

[This message has been edited by Chewbacca99 (edited 06-10-2001).]
 
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Chewbaccaa, man you *really* have a skewed vision of things. I mean "A person that sales ANYTHING can be a scalper." Come on man! I sell my time as a consultant, am I a scalper?? Walmart sells DVD players at a huge mark-up over what they buy them for - are they scalpers? Pioneer sells DVD players to Walmart for a huge mark-up - are they scalpers???? Electronics manufactures sell components to Pinoeer for their DVD players at a mark-up - are they scalpers? Nearly everything you ever buy anywhere someone is making a profit off you. Simply making a profit is *NOT* scalping.

I think you really have little concept of what a free market economy is. I buy and sell stuff to support my SW habit. As does Ron, Flarida, Wooten, Gus, Chris G., etc. No one's ever accused any of us of being scalpers. And I don't believe we are. In a free market, sellers set prices and buyers choose to either buy something or not.

The **true** definition of a scalper is someone who manipulates supply to artificially raise the price of an item to make a profit. It's pretty easy to do this on a local level with new product hitting stores. But it's nearly impossible to do in the secondary market because you'd practically have to buy up every know example of some piece to manipulate the supply. It's simply not practical.

Cj
 
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The only way a person could scalp vintage is if that person and 5 or 10 of his bottom feeding friends bought every (example) vintage jedi luke or Madine that was ever made for the book value that Rocketfett rants about, then jacked that price up by Two or three houndred percent and insisted on that price for every single one he sold. That way you would HAVE to pay that price if you EVER wanted a Jedi luke or a Madine. Its like if instead of collecting with my cash, I were to "invest" every single starwars dollar I spend on the exact same fig and corner the market on it. I have thousands of loose figs. If I had bought a new R2 holo with the cash I spent on every single one of these, I would have wiped out every R2 holo within two states. And you just cant do that with vintage because chaos theory has distributed them to basements and attics and shoe boxes and buck rogers lunch boxes and god only knows were else other than the retail chains they came from. Where as with the R2 holos, scalper lowlife can slip the manager of the retail chain a $20 spot and get a nice convenient phone call when a certain SKU ## shows up on a truck. Slimeball then has a concentration of something that no one else ever had a chance to buy. And its not first come first serve either. The way they do it with concert tickets is the scumbags actually are cousins with, gangsters with or are some how associated with the promoter of the show who cuts them a percentage of the tickets before they ever go on sale. And then everyone wonders how 30,000 Pearl Jam tickets sold out in 47 seconds. They didnt but about 10,000 maybe did. Thats why Pearl Jam boycatted ticket master.


The solution to the ticket scalping problem has been known to musicians and the super hypp for decades. Its called the first song cull. You show up at the show and wait outside until you hear the last chorus of the first song. At which point you walk up to the Myriad of by then desperate scalpers and buy your ticked at a price usually half of the original selling price. Most Toys you can do this with as well just by waiting until they ship them again and let the scalpers sit in the stuff. Problem with Star Wars is the company that makes them is straight up in on the take with scalpers. Its the only excuse for continually shortpacking figures that they know everybody wants like troopbuilders
 
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Good points cfawcett. I sell my services as a building contractor, sometimes I'm higher than the other guy, sometime lower. Does this make me a scalper, I don't think so. The point is, is that vintage collectors for the most part could care less about scalpers or any issue about them.
More then half the time new collectors are griping about scalpers, distribution, this figure sucks!, loose collectors ripping carded collectors, etc. Geez, I've never seen such a bunch of whining people in my life. I wonder sometimes how people could even enjoy the hobby with that many issues.
 
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Here's a point I'll argue to the grave... you can't scalp an item that isn't currently available at retail. Scalping is artificially manipulating the initial market to lessen supply and create demand that would otherwise not be there. After creating the supply shortage, if you then sell the items to the original target buyers of the items, then you are scalping.

The reason vintage items cannot be scalped is because everyone has an equal chance to obtain the item on the secondary market. Just because Joe Dealer has three thousand Amanaman figures to sell, doesn't mean he is scalping them. It just means he put the time in to track them down, or has the capital to set up a shop so they are brought to him. If you want three thousand Amanamans, then get out there and work for it. If you want any figure or toy for that matter, get out there and work for it.

It's not shopping, it's collecting. If you don't like the price someone is charging for their toy, then simply don't buy it. There isn't a production toy out there that won't pop up again later. Just be patient, have fun, and don't let the fact that you can't get a toy upset you.




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Darth Rayle, It's vertually impossible for scalpers to effect the vintage market like you said. Especially with the internet. the overwhelming majority of vintage collectors are on the net. That's the natural extention of it now a days. To find other collectors, fill in holes, maybe because people have bought all the nice ones from shops, so they go to the net where ALL the vintage figures are readily available for fair prices. If you are patient and look around you can get ALL of them for fair well below book prices. I did, and I got them for what the seller was willing to sell them for. Most of them weren't collectors and didn't care about their sentimental value like I do. But when the time came that I needed to sell the duplicates, it's going to be for what I spent on them or a little more, or not at all. It's not like I'm wanting to sell them off to get more to sell for profit. I'm selling them to get married. Does that make me a scalper since I have an end I'm selling them for, and it's not to get more figures?
I wasn't ranting about the price guides for vintage. I just think they're a fair price for a totally mint loose figure, IF you take all the prices in all the guides and average them together. Not just use the rediculously high ones. I've seen some that say a VC Jawa loose mint is worth about $350.00! And others that say $200.00. The fair value for a mint loose one is probly about $250.00 to $275.00. There has to be SOMETHING formal and universally used to set value, otherwise no one has anything on which to base their asking prices, and if there are no book values the already bad "something for nothing" mantality of some collectors will get worse. I do have the right to get back what I paid for these over the last 6 years. I shouldn't have to feel obligated to sell them for less than I got them for. That's not in the real world. I dont' ask rediculous prices either. The only reason I mentioned books is because they are the ONLY formal guide for showing loose mint prices. And as long as people don't try and sell C-8 figures for those prices, like Brian does, they're being fair. People that try and sell less than mint figures at mint prices aren't scalpers. They're crooks amd theives.

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I think this is a problem of semantics. I think we're so fixated on this term 'scalper' that we're trying to twist it around to define every abuse of the hobby under the sun.

I agree technically there's probably no such thing as vintage scalping. So what? That still leaves profiteering, scheming, manipulation of uninformed collectors or newbies, ripping people off, and so on.

There are a significant number of actions that can be taken by collectors or dealers which can be considered immoral and unscrupulous. And there are just as many justifications and excuses for taking such actions.

Personally, I've concluded the only way to enjoy the hobby is to ignore a lot of the hooplah as well as the shady elements, while focusing on what makes you happy. As long as you can sleep well at night, then don't pay too much heed to the more unseedy elements. They're out of your control and can only bring you grief, if you let them into your head.

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by cfawcett:
Chewbaccaa, man you *really* have a skewed vision of things. I mean "A person that sales ANYTHING can be a scalper." Come on man! I sell my time as a consultant, am I a scalper??

Cj
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


OK maybe I was to broad in my vision. I don't want to argue with you vintage guys. A good example of a scalper is Al from the movie "Toy Story 2". If you havent seen that movie, thats the one to watch to get an idea for scalping. Keep in mind the story is about a vintage woody doll. Its all in the attitude when selling that will make one look like a scalper.

CJ- I am not calling you a scalper, you hooked me up with that Emperor POTF carded for $20. To me that was a great deal and I thank you for that. I agree with your defintion on scalping too. The term "scalper" can be visioned how ever you want. I still feel that anything can be scalped. THere are to many opinions on the scalping issue and realy is a waste of time to argue about, so therefor I am going to chill about this topic and carry on with the hobby.

Flarida- Thats fine with me on how you feel towards vintage scalping. We all have our own opinions. Its all about getting along with each other. Your right about being patient because I know this from my journey of trying to get every figure carded to open. I try to look for the right deal. There is no need for me to argue with you guys over an issue that is basically opinionated. This would be a long discussion and might have some bad turn of events. We all know what has happened in the other forums. Lets not continue.

Thanks for your replies and opinions. These are most interesting views on this topic. Lets get back to our vintage forum. I'm not mad at anyone here.


[This message has been edited by Chewbacca99 (edited 06-10-2001).]
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chewbacca99:

OK maybe I was to broad in my vision.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Let's see....

I was just at the local beer scalper's talking about the price of groceries at the food scalper's with a clerk from the mail scalper.

You're right : ^ )

I don't want to argue with you vintage guys.[/QUOTE]

I never heard the term scalper applied to anyone in this hobby until POTF 2 appeared. The reason for this is self evident to most of us.

A good example of a scalper is Al from the movie "Toy Story 2". If you havent seen that movie, thats the one to watch to get an idea for scalping. Keep in mind the story is about a vintage woody doll. Its all in the attitude when selling that will make one look like a scalper.[/QUOTE]

Maybe to the minority of people out there who are hell bent on using the term out of context. From memory the guy stole the doll anyway : ^ )

Flarida- Thats fine with me on how you feel towards vintage scalping. We all have our own opinions.[/QUOTE]

And some are so misplaced it makes you want to cry....

There is no need for me to argue with you guys over an issue that is basically opinionated. [/QUOTE]

No it's not - it's as clear cut as the distinction between vintage and non-vintage.


These are most interesting views on this topic.[/QUOTE]

Interesting is probably too tame a word
: ^ ) Scalper is a derrogative term people use to describe someone preventing them from buying an item available to consumers at primary market price.

It's also an angry term that some people see fit to throw at anyone they see preventing them from owning something they want.

Vintage SW is not available in any kind of primary market place, hasn't been for years. You have no more right to buy it at a set price than you do to buy a funnel from the Titanic at a set price.

Ever heard of an antique scalper? How about someone scalping a Picasso? Or maybe someone scalping vintage automobiles? Didn't think so.

The 'S' word belongs in the POTF 2, EP 1, POTJ forums, not here.

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Speaking as a collector of both new and vintage lines, the reason why collectors of the new line get bent out of shape so easily is that there are so many figures in "general release" which are simply impossible to find. There's nothing, absolutely nothing impossible to find for the loose vintage collector with a little patience. Sure, everybody won't score an original Rocket-firing Fett, but you WILL be able to find a normal Boba Fett, often with a Kmart price tag still on it mocking you with a $2.99 price.
I defy you to find a POTF2 Han / Tauntaun beast pack outside of eBay.

The biggest problem facing vintage collectors, IMO, is sellers with inaccurate descriptions of their wares. I'll agree that vintage collectors are a more lot laid back in general. They know what they want and what they expect it to be. The modern colllector hears of a great new figure coming out, then gets P.O'd by the final product, because they didn't know what to expect.

As for scalpers, yes they will always be there. That doesn't mean we have to like them!
 
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The reason ive kept out of this discussion so far is because as a 100% vintage collector, my collecting is in no way hampered by so-called Scalpers. End of.

If you are a vintage collector, you pay what you want to pay for item X, but whatever you pay you certainly arent being scalped. Nobody is attempting to control the market and make you pay over and above the retail by removing every example of said item from the marketplace (as occurs in POTF2/EP1/POTJ). This is because there is no retail price associated with vintage anymore, and every price currently associated with any item is due to its genuine rareity, not a percieved rareity based on shortage of current supply. People charge what they think they might get for an item. They might still be sat there 10 years later demanding $50 for a loose beat up figure, but nobody has the right (or the need) to critisise the seller and label them Scalper. Just move onto another deal.

I never pay more for a vintage piece than I want or need to. So therefore I am never scalped. I might pay $50-100+ (and the rest...) for a carded (or loose!) figure that only 20 years ago cost $1-4. I am not being scalped though, no more than as has already been stated, the person who collects old masters, or vintage cars, or any other collectible that routinely comes up for sale at anything up to 100x its original retail price.

Vintage and modern Star Wars collecting is as different as chalk and cheese. Different attitudes, different methods and different collections. We dont want or need these attitudes coming into our currently relatively relaxed hobby.

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chewbacca99:
OK you guys here in this forum are great people and have some awesome collections and great knowledge on the vintage world.

To aurgue the real term of a scalper is dumb. Guys dont give me this crap about "vintage" cant be scalped, this allows them to get away with it. Make it clear that vintage holds a value and that some people pay what they want to. THERE ARE VINTAGE SCALPERS. Scalping is a form of making money to support what ever habit one may have.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

You've just described how most people look at their jobs.

ron
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chewbacca99:

OK maybe I was to broad in my vision. I don't want to argue with you vintage guys. A good example of a scalper is Al from the movie "Toy Story 2". If you havent seen that movie, thats the one to watch to get an idea for scalping. Keep in mind the story is about a vintage woody doll. Its all in the attitude when selling that will make one look like a scalper.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The guy in Toy Story II stole the doll from a garage sale! You're not a scalper just because you're fat and eat cheeze doodles. You can call that guy a thief, but he was absolutely not a scalper.

Some of you guys really want to rail against what you find unfair in the hobby; and, since "scalper" has become about the worst insult you can throw at someone, you start applying it to everyone who is engaging in some practice you're not fond of. But it's not that simple. You can't jump into the vintage hobby, which exists entirely on a secondary market level, and start mandating how things should and shouldn't be sold.

Yes, some people make their livings selling vintage toys. Be grateful for it, because they're here catering to your hobby. Sure, some of these guys are unscrupulous. But that's the way life is-- I defy you to find 10 different real estate agents, lawyers, building contractors or dog trainers who are entirely perfect, trustworthy people. Some people aren't trustworthy, period. It doesn't mean they're "scalpers."

And for the record, many collectors, such as chris georgoulias, were rooting for that fat guy from Toy Story II to sell the Woody doll to Japan. I was too. Better it get preserved in a museum than written on and abused by some kid. And don't get on me about it, either. If we were talking about someone letting a kid have a rocketfett to play with and chew on, you'd all be right with me :^)

ron
 
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I think what this comes down to is proper use of terminology.
The word "scalper" is being abused because it is being used improperly. To echo what Ron said, some people are going to take advantage of the vintage SW collecting hobby to make a profit from it. Calling them scalpers IMO makes your claims against these people less genuine, because it simply is not the correct term to describe what they are doing.
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by PodRacer X:
Speaking as a collector of both new and vintage lines, the reason why collectors of the new line get bent out of shape so easily is that there are so many figures in "general release" which are simply impossible to find. There's nothing, absolutely nothing impossible to find for the loose vintage collector with a little patience. Sure, everybody won't score an original Rocket-firing Fett, but you WILL be able to find a normal Boba Fett, often with a Kmart price tag still on it mocking you with a $2.99 price.
I defy you to find a POTF2 Han / Tauntaun beast pack outside of eBay.

The biggest problem facing vintage collectors, IMO, is sellers with inaccurate descriptions of their wares. I'll agree that vintage collectors are a more lot laid back in general. They know what they want and what they expect it to be. The modern colllector hears of a great new figure coming out, then gets P.O'd by the final product, because they didn't know what to expect.

As for scalpers, yes they will always be there. That doesn't mean we have to like them!
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


Oh, I understand the frustrations of POTF2 collectors. I used to collect the line and I rarely could find the figures I wanted when they first came out.

And I do like to see collectors of that line helping one another to find stuff and thereby thwarting scalpers.

But I have seen a lot of collectors who are entirely wrapped up in their anti-scalper stance. And it's a little sad. These folks seem nothing but annoyed and angered by their hobby.

On the other hand, I also know several collectors of the newer line who have fun and are laid back. They get the stuff they want eventually and they're happy. And, once in awhile, they might even pay a little over retail to get something they can't find (because of Hasbro's horrible distribution). Those are the breaks.

I guess my stance is this: If you can't engage in the hobby (whether it's vintage or POTF2) and have fun, then it's not worth your time. I'm not suggesting that you should *like* or even tolerate scalpers. But don't let them ruin your enjoyment of the hobby.

Maybe the attitude towards scalping has changed since I last checked. But back when I was looking at the POTF2 newsgroups, most of the discussion there was scalper related. It was a real bore.

ron
 
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Great points Ron. One other thing to add. Some people seem to get all riled up about collector's "dealing" to help support their collections.

As Ron said, there are many dealers we should be grateful for because they help us with our hobbies. I say it's even *more* so for the collector/dealers. Because ultimately they're doing it for love of the hobby, not just to make a living. So, they often give great deals on stuff they have.

I have never understood the problem with dealing. I mean, if I can go out and buy a bulk collection cheap, get something for $100, sell it to a friend for $200 when the book value if $300, then really everyone wins.

Cj
 
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sharp: But even your terminology here is not quite on. What is wrong with making a profit from this hobby???? That's essential American! That's a free market! That's capitalism.

Nothing wrong with that in my book. When it becomes wrong is if you're manipulating the market, or lying to buyers, or ripping people off.

I have no problem whatsoever with someone like Tom Derby buying a huge collection for $5k and then turning it around for $10k. Tom's an honest guy and an honest dealer. If making a profit is a bad thing, then we all better just quit our jobs tomorrow and start a Star Wars Commune and live off the land.


Cj
 
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Cj,

I never said there was anything wrong with making a profit on vintage SW...in fact I never said there was anything wrong with anything besides using incorrect vocabulary.

[This message has been edited by sharpskywalker (edited 06-11-2001).]
 
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OK, maybe a loss in net translation.
It just seemed like this sentence:
"some people are going to take advantage of the vintage SW collecting hobby to make a profit from it"
had a negative spin to it.

Cj
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by ronsalvatore:

I guess my stance is this: If you can't engage in the hobby (whether it's vintage or POTF2) and have fun, then it's not worth your time.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Agreed! I'm 100% of that thinking, too. This is what we do for fun, so it should be just that, fun.

That's why so many people are bailing out of Hasbro's sinking boat.
 
G

Guest

I DO think that it's possible to scalp vintage figures, and here's my logic:

I live in central California where there's easily a million people within a 50 mile radius. Not too dense compared with the rest of Cali, but you get the idea.
To my knowledge, there is NO shop in this radius that sells classic toys. Trains maybe, but no SW, ST, Barbie or anything like that. The handful of comic shops carry "new" items only. A "vintage" figure to them is an GC POTF2 w/ a holo sticker.

So, if I want to buy vintage SW stuff, I'm limited to personal websites (expensive) or eBay, where the occassional deal comes thru.

Now here's where the scalping happens... there are buyers who scour eBay 24/7 bidding on all of the "deals", and any they win are relisted by them at higher prices. This removes the only low-price outlet for most casual buyers, forcing them to pay more either buy having to bid OVER the "scalper" to get the item, or buy FROM the scalper after he's won the lower auction.

Oh yeah, another thing about these scalpers... to most collectors, one is plenty, especially on the truly rare items (VC Jawa 12 back, DT Luke etc.) To a Scalper, it doesn't matter if they already have 1 or 30 of an item. If they can get it cheap and resell it for a profit, they will.

So, Vintage Scalpers DO exist, from a certain point-of-view.

------------------
"O zephyr winds that blow on high,
Lift me now, so I can fly!"
 
G

Guest

Mind if a Belgian Crazy joins in on this?
I have my own point of view of scalpers and others like them but I will not go into that cause basicly I agree with most of what has been said here.
On the other hand the personal view of what one thinks of a scalper is something that can show you the right way to act on any given point in time when you buy something.
It comes to this...when you think it is to expensive and/or way overpriced don't buy it. If it is reasonable (in your personal view) buy it.
That is how I do it basicly, and I live in Belgium, we get nothing overhere.
Good thing that there are people outthere that enjoy their hobby and by enjoying it so much want to share the experience with other likeminded fellows.
Thanks, you know who you are


------------------
"So be it........jedi"
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Darth Sebulba:
I DO think that it's possible to scalp vintage figures, and here's my logic:<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Fuzzy, fuzzy convoluted, misguided logic.


So, Vintage Scalpers DO exist, from a certain point-of-view.[/QUOTE]

And that certain point of view is reliant on zero knowledge of appropriate word usage.
 
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Please tell me why we have to recycle this overexhausted scalper crap? Seriously, kids, we're flogging a dead dog here. We blew our collective wads on this one a LONG time ago. How many different ways do we have to address the same topic? Can we just quit, please?

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"Yeah, but droids don't pull peoples' arms out of their sockets when they lose an auction by being outbid at the last second. Shaven Wookiees are known to do that."
 
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shavenwookiee,

You're right...it was not my intention to resurrect this eternal disagreement. I apologize to all who find this topic as old as I do.
 
G

Guest

Thanks for the support, Ben. Last time I checked, this was a site for Star Wars fans, not a site for examples of the proper usage of grammar.

Besides, I DID say I was from California.

English: "I saw the man do it, and I followed him."
Cali: "I seen him when he done it and I taken out after him. Axe anybody."

Zero grammar, but perfectly lucid accounting.
 
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The latest article on X-Entertainment.com inspired me to recycle this post.

Check it out here!

He does use the term scalper somewhat loosely, but its still an interesting article.
 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Darth Sebulba:
Thanks for the support, Ben. Last time I checked, this was a site for Star Wars fans, not a site for examples of the proper usage of grammar.

Besides, I DID say I was from California.

English: "I saw the man do it, and I followed him."
Cali: "I seen him when he done it and I taken out after him. Axe anybody."

Zero grammar, but perfectly lucid accounting.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Ummmm, whatever. I don't believe I had a problem with your grammar - just perhaps your failure to grasp the meaning of the word scalper : ^ )
 
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