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A digression on Scalping...

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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:47 am

This is pretty good..Teekay said

"Alright, that arguement makes a little more sense, but still, oil is generally not bought at then resold at twice the original price on eBay."

No its about 3 times that price from the retailer when it reaches the customer. no one buys crude oil to use in their vehicles or to heat their homes they used refined product. I guess you didnt buy much gasoline last year at $5 a gallon, i live in the SF bay area in Nor Cal so i paid about $5.50 with all the taxes and what not. Thats still better then our europeon friends though.

It seems to me that the majority of the "con" arguments so far from what i have read are all by folks whose arguments seem to be fairness :roll: , and limited funds and for some really sad reason initiative. Fortune favours the prepared. I think also that most are probably pretty young (Im just infering from what i take out of these arguments) and havent been really beaten up by it all yet. I was like that when i was young and idealistic so it all looks like the kinda stuff i would have said before i learned better which by the way im still doing. Thank god im still totally imature. HAHA, come on Im 36 and i play with legos for criminy sakes. For example...Teekay said,

"Cool. That's still like five times more LEGO money than I have."

I think Voice of reason put it best earlier...

"All opinions aside, the simple fact is that it is not a crime to buy and resell LEGO. Period. Like it or not. This conversation can continously go around and around, but I don't think anyone is going to change their hard-set views. And that's okay!"

Regardless of their intent Legos are a free market product. you buy it, you own it period, its not "lend /lease", you dont finance legos so no one is holding note over you that would limit your use, you can do with it what you want. if you want to keep it great, if you want to sell it fine, if you want to throw it in the garbage thats your deal. If Lego is sooo above it all why is their pricing so unfair in other countries besides the US including their own country of origin, is it the market, is it distribution issues, are they just being jerks and trying to maximize their profits? Its all about the money friends. It is for TLG, if you dont believe that your delusional. Its out there for you too especially in the states people. If you have drive the sky's the limit. Original intent means very little compared to the final product and its actual uses. just like Tyrant wrote about the inventor of dynamite having a different intend for dynamites uses( off subject a little but, Einstien did know what the ramifications were of atomic energy he knew he could produce a weapon with it, he outlined it in a letter he sent to Roosevelt before the war, when the nazis were starting to subjegate the jews, to get himself and his team out of germany.Thats why the manhatten project was started so early during the war and we were actually able to get some working bombs in such a short time not that we really needed them. The fire bombings we did to the japanese citis did way, way more damage. the a bombs were just the cherry on the cake)

You know this is great that all of us can come together and share our thoughts and opinons on something so trivial considering how things are going for most folks in the states right now and around the world. This forum has been a blast.

May the force be with you
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Tyrant » Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:11 pm

darth jason wrote:Original intent means very little compared to the final product and its actual uses. just like Tyrant wrote about the inventor of dynamite having a different intend for dynamites uses( off subject a little but, Einstien did know what the ramifications were of atomic energy he knew he could produce a weapon with it, he outlined it in a letter he sent to Roosevelt before the war, when the nazis were starting to subjegate the jews, to get himself and his team out of germany.Thats why the manhatten project was started so early during the war and we were actually able to get some working bombs in such a short time not that we really needed them. The fire bombings we did to the japanese citis did way, way more damage. the a bombs were just the cherry on the cake)

Not to sidetrack, but I am reading a book right now (Wired for War, it's about the military and the robots they are using and will be using) that mentioned that. I read it a few hours after I posted that. It didn't elaborate on where it all fit in the timeline of events, but it did mention him writing the letter to Roosevelt. It dodn't seem to be anything anyone was focusing on so I just let it stand (and as I said, I wasn't sure how quickly he realised the potential use). Also somewhat on topic, it mentioned that he and others tried to control how the bombs would be used and as we all know they weren't very successful. So, it was another case of once it's out there, people will use it however they see fit. As for the firebombings, I am suprised how may people don't know about that.

I too would like to thank the mods for allowing this to continue. And thank everyone for contributing
Peace is a lie, there is only passion. Through passion, I gain strength. Through strength, I gain power. Through power, I gain victory. Through victory, my chains are broken. The Force shall free me.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby thepatient » Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:57 pm

Teekay you're right, most people who buy LEGO, do it from a collectors stand point to build, play and display. Those are not the people that I'm referring to in my statements.

When buying LEGO with the intent to resell at a later date, it is exactly like the stock market. The key to the Stock market and making money at it; is stay with stocks for the long haul. That is what most aftermarket dealers do to get their profits. It's investing, staying with that investment, and selling when the time is right or the price has matured to the desired amount. That amount is controlled by buyers (sellers too) and other factors dealing with a particular companie's stock. An investor speculates that a stock or set will go up by the time you want to sell or it hits an amount that you want to sell at. Sometimes it goes up and somtimes it doesn't. The only major difference in my mind is that the LEGO bought now, to be sold later is more likely to go up. It' is in one sense a stonger investment because most stocks are moving down at this time.

I wish Warren Buffet was a member here, he could explain it better... and I would ask him to buy me some LEGO.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby tamuhockey » Thu Mar 12, 2009 1:35 pm

Tyrant wrote:
darth jason wrote:Original intent means very little compared to the final product and its actual uses. just like Tyrant wrote about the inventor of dynamite having a different intend for dynamites uses( off subject a little but, Einstien did know what the ramifications were of atomic energy he knew he could produce a weapon with it, he outlined it in a letter he sent to Roosevelt before the war, when the nazis were starting to subjegate the jews, to get himself and his team out of germany.Thats why the manhatten project was started so early during the war and we were actually able to get some working bombs in such a short time not that we really needed them. The fire bombings we did to the japanese citis did way, way more damage. the a bombs were just the cherry on the cake)

Not to sidetrack, but I am reading a book right now (Wired for War, it's about the military and the robots they are using and will be using) that mentioned that. I read it a few hours after I posted that. It didn't elaborate on where it all fit in the timeline of events, but it did mention him writing the letter to Roosevelt. It dodn't seem to be anything anyone was focusing on so I just let it stand (and as I said, I wasn't sure how quickly he realised the potential use). Also somewhat on topic, it mentioned that he and others tried to control how the bombs would be used and as we all know they weren't very successful. So, it was another case of once it's out there, people will use it however they see fit. As for the firebombings, I am suprised how may people don't know about that.

I too would like to thank the mods for allowing this to continue. And thank everyone for contributing


Just to further deviate - but even less known than the firebombing is just how close the US was to using "Bat Bombs" during WWII. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bat_bomb

Sadly, PETA wasnt around then - they would have a field day with this one.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Thu Mar 12, 2009 2:10 pm

Taumhockey, thanks for the link about the "bat bombs" I saw a show on the history channel that showed these little guys. cool stuff, im a WW2 junkie so the more the marrier for me. Its amazing to me how much of this stuff we're still just finding out. And If anyone thinks im a dork for quoting Julia Child remember this...During the war, she was an OSS agent stationed in Ceylon in the PTO. Very, few people know about that.

Back on topic I just dont see how these "scalpers" are really making such a drought of legos or are really destroying someones oppourtunity to buy the lego set of their choice. I can see how someone in a rural area is channeled into having to use the internet and having to pay shipping and a possible mark up. It has made one heck of a debate though! Furthermore Ive never seen anyone hanging outside a retail store w/a trunk of lego's for sale. Ive seen alot of other junk but never legos.I have also found some amazing deals on the aftermarket. There is a dude I found online a while back that ive bought 3 or 4 sets from all at least 25% off, some are like even crazier,cash only(of course). I met the dude on the weekend at his place and saw his lego stash and it was impressive all new, all different sets, stacked in order and immaculate. I bought the ISD from him well after it was out of regular production for $80. i think i got the imperial drop ship and obiwans jedi fighter and the hyperdrive ring for $50! He's hardly ever around but when i see him online i usually buy several sets. Either the guy is some kind of dealer or their hot, either way i could careless and im certainly not worried about TLG losing anything.

My point is there are tons of people selling and buying legos and the best way to put some "scalper" out of business is to not buy from them. Buy from a reputable source and keep it at that.

Im sure if any of the "anti scalping" people ran across this situation I mentioned they would leave their moral objections back in the car and buy as much as they could get their hands on.

That to me is a problem with a morality argument because everyone has a price.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby thepatient » Thu Mar 12, 2009 2:40 pm

darth jason wrote:... He's hardly ever around but when i see him online i usually buy several sets. Either the guy is some kind of dealer or they're hot, either way i could careless and im certainly not worried about TLG losing anything...


You better hope he's a dealer. If they are hot, you would be just as guilty as he is in the eyes of the law. You might want to make sure next time you purchase from this dude.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Thu Mar 12, 2009 2:58 pm

Yea i havent seen this dude online in a while. its possible these are a little on the warm side, i highly doubt it but so could anything you buy online or at a toy show, comic book or vintage toy stores, flea markets or garage sales you really dont know. I think if I see this guy again i will ask him where he gets these, you know he had other collectables too like star trek toys and transformers and a whole rack of playmobile so its probably on the up and up, maybee the guy had a store that went under and he kept all his wholesaler licenses up. He also had everything inventoried pretty well. It was more just the whole scenario itself that brought that idea to mind. The dude was pretty clean cut and lived in a super affluent area real nice too.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:24 pm

I forgot to throw in the usual disclaimer.

Kids, DO NOT TRY DOING SOMETHING THIS SKETCHY. There are a lot of weirdo's out there,always, if you see something like this talk to your parents about it first just to be safe.

Please be wary in internet land.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Teekay » Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:59 pm

darth jason wrote:No its about 3 times that price from the retailer when it reaches the customer. no one buys crude oil to use in their vehicles or to heat their homes they used refined product. I guess you didnt buy much gasoline last year at $5 a gallon, i live in the SF bay area in Nor Cal so i paid about $5.50 with all the taxes and what not. Thats still better then our europeon friends though.


No actually, you may be surprised that you are in an arguement with a middle schooler (albeit a very worldly aware one). Although my parents didn't have to pay that much. In Florida, it only got up to about $4 per gallon.

However, I'm not talking about the oil companies to the gas stations. Just like for LEGO we aren't talking about from TLG to the retailers. I'm talking about the purchaser reselling. LEGO has been sold for twice MSRP online. No one buys gasoline at their local Shell, then sells it over the internet for $6 a gallon rather than the current $3 price.

darth jason wrote:It seems to me that the majority of the "con" arguments so far from what i have read are all by folks whose arguments seem to be fairness :roll: , and limited funds and for some really sad reason initiative. Fortune favours the prepared. I think also that most are probably pretty young (Im just infering from what i take out of these arguments) and havent been really beaten up by it all yet. I was like that when i was young and idealistic so it all looks like the kinda stuff i would have said before i learned better which by the way im still doing. Thank god im still totally imature. HAHA, come on Im 36 and i play with legos for criminy sakes.


Yeah, true, I am only in 7th grade, but I know that life isn't fair. What I talking about, though, is someone going to a Target, and buying 5 Republic Fighter Tanks, just to resell later. Then 10 minutes later, a 6 year old comes along, wanting a Republic Fighter Tank. When he gets there, they are all gone, just because someone just wanted to make a few bucks. That is what I'm talking about, and I don't think it is unreasonable to ask for those situations not to happen.

darth jason wrote:I think Voice of reason put it best earlier...

"All opinions aside, the simple fact is that it is not a crime to buy and resell LEGO. Period. Like it or not. This conversation can continously go around and around, but I don't think anyone is going to change their hard-set views. And that's okay!"


Well, when I said that, it was a side note, not pertaining to the discussion. I wasn't complaining or anything.

darth jason wrote:Regardless of their intent Legos are a free market product. you buy it, you own it period, its not "lend /lease", you dont finance legos so no one is holding note over you that would limit your use, you can do with it what you want. if you want to keep it great, if you want to sell it fine, if you want to throw it in the garbage thats your deal. If Lego is sooo above it all why is their pricing so unfair in other countries besides the US including their own country of origin, is it the market, is it distribution issues, are they just being jerks and trying to maximize their profits? Its all about the money friends. It is for TLG, if you dont believe that your delusional. Its out there for you too especially in the states people. If you have drive the sky's the limit. Original intent means very little compared to the final product and its actual uses. just like Tyrant wrote about the inventor of dynamite having a different intend for dynamites uses( off subject a little but, Einstien did know what the ramifications were of atomic energy he knew he could produce a weapon with it, he outlined it in a letter he sent to Roosevelt before the war, when the nazis were starting to subjegate the jews, to get himself and his team out of germany.Thats why the manhatten project was started so early during the war and we were actually able to get some working bombs in such a short time not that we really needed them. The fire bombings we did to the japanese citis did way, way more damage. the a bombs were just the cherry on the cake)


All right, I've already said you can sell your LEGO at whatever price you want, I don't care, just so long as you don't lie on the internet about it, and you (more importantly) don't buy many at once, depleting a store and preventing LEGO's original purpose: to be a child's toy.

darth jason wrote:You know this is great that all of us can come together and share our thoughts and opinons on something so trivial considering how things are going for most folks in the states right now and around the world. This forum has been a blast.


Yeah, I'm having a lot of fun too. I've been at this forum for over seven months now, and there hasn't been a thread as fun as this one yet.

Hey, Tyrant, something I've noticed. We've had completely different opinions in this arguement, and our sigs don't agree, either. ;) :lol:

~Sam (Teekay)
I don't know why I dropped back here again lately. LEGO can no longer hold my interest, and I'm almost certainly gone forever. Bye to all who remember me.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Tyrant » Thu Mar 12, 2009 4:35 pm

Teekay wrote: However, I'm not talking about the oil companies to the gas stations. Just like for LEGO we aren't talking about from TLG to the retailers. I'm talking about the purchaser reselling. LEGO has been sold for twice MSRP online. No one buys gasoline at their local Shell, then sells it over the internet for $6 a gallon rather than the current $3 price.

Well, that's a matter of practicality. Gasoline, by the nature of it's intended use, is highly volatile. It's not something most shipping companies would like you sending through their system. If it were stable, you can bet there would be a market for it. The best comparison I can think of is Gold. Gold can be (and is) sold on Ebay. Gold can be turned into jewelry or wiring or whatever, but it is also bought for potential future value. Buying Gold a few years ago would have been for the long term. Right now it's bouncing around enough in a short period that you can do it short term. I won't compare them to diamonds (even though they have similar market properties as gold) because their price is artificially inflated and eventually their value will drop sharply once enough people wake up to that fact.
Teekay wrote:Hey, Tyrant, something I've noticed. We've had completely different opinions in this arguement, and our sigs don't agree, either. ;) :lol:

Honestly, I was inspired by yours. I usually don't bother with a signiature on message boards. I thought, why not. It was a toss up between that and the quote on the Ramses II statue in Watchmen:
I am Ozymanias
King of Kings
Look Upon My Works
Ye Might and Despair
I think it sounds cool, but it has a certain meaning when taken in full context. The statue that proclaims this sits aside a barren wasteland implying that all Ramses had accomplished was ultimately destroyed and forgotten and his statue and it's inscription was a sign of extreme hubris on his part. It can easily fit into the Watchmen storyline depending on how you view the ending.

As for why the Sith code, I think the Sith are more interesting characters than most of the Jedi. I find characters that do the right thing "just because" to be boring and villains typically have more iteresting backstories, motivations, and character traits.

~Sam (Teekay)[/quote]
Peace is a lie, there is only passion. Through passion, I gain strength. Through strength, I gain power. Through power, I gain victory. Through victory, my chains are broken. The Force shall free me.
-The Sith Code
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:32 am

Teekey,

It does not suprise me one bit that you are in middle school I had already deduced that you were fairly young. I must say you have made some very compeling arguments and brought some light on a very touchy(for some) and so it seems complicated scenario.

I see we missconected with your oil analogy. I had taken the position of the crude to refined product cost variant totally negating the mention of ebay as you have stated because well that would be pointless but it dosent happen. In otherword raw material cost to finish product to the consumer. I dont think oil is a good analogy for this problem they are two extremely different animals.

As for how someone reselling legos at an inflated rate in an current/open market really hampers anyones lego set availability, im not convinced in the least. If someone buys 5 fighter tanks at the retail price(usually above msrp) then attempts to resell them onlive at well over their intended price, plus shipping(which is usually inflated too) and possibly tax when there are other sellers that have competative prices, and lately from what Ive seen have free shipping, what kind of person does that? As well if we are only talking retail stores, well i guess that would be relevent to your sphere of influance, and when your pretty young thats a pretty small one. You hampered with only being able to go where either your parents/relatives/friends can take you or you can take yourself which at any age is different for everyone.
And as we all know limited discresionary funds can be a pain and/or a sore subject.

A moron thats who.

When you mark things up from wholesale in alot of industries the standard number thrown around is 20%, now thats mark up not profit...The market determins that, period. Anyone remember what happened to the comic book and card market in the late 80's and early 90's when the bottom fell out? But what your saying is someone skip this and buy something at MSRP or higher and then marking up and reducing their profit margin even further. Ive worked in trucking for a long time and profits are at 7% conservativly and thats with a lot of money coming in and going out. So someone destroying their retail profit margin which is way higher than services since your selling widgets and not hours/labour and all the gooblygook.

Using this we can say that...

Lego dosent produce enough sets to cause a market deflation, the world economy is doing that right now since little stock of any kind is moving and inventories are high, thus all the sales..and there are alot of them.So sorry but unless they go out of business prices arent going to rapidly drop.

Lego dosent produce few enough sets for someone pacticing this type of "scalping" to really hamper anyones ability to pick up a set in the retail market or online. If it does..How can you prove that, whos to say 5 different people didnt buy the 5 tanks? And if they did its not hurting anyone they should have used some initiative and called the store for availability and had one held.Now this is different if someone holds on the the sets and resells them later when the sets are out of production but again its all relative to the market.

It seems these "scalpers" are pretty easy to put out of business being that they are obviously not that bright and not real scalpers but poor hustlers and i dont think this is a real problem just more of a boogy man explanation for why stores maintain poor stocks. thats why scalpers do shows its a limited engagement, the prices only go up close to D-day and if it sells out earlier they go up faster, there is no stock to maintain and it is as defined a "quick turnover", trying to sell a lego set for 25% over retail plus shipping while others are moving stuff cheaper is not going to have a fast turnaround.

Bottom line dont buy from someone like this you'd be a bigger fool then they are.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Fri Mar 13, 2009 3:34 pm

i just want to clarify from my last posting because after rereading this i realized i messed up a line in my train of thought. When I wrote "a moron thats who" I was refering to the lego "scalper" that buys lego at msrp to resell while the sets still available. i should have reread this better before i posted.

I was just sloppy my first response was much more composed but i forgot to save it and well since im at work i jumped on a different subject without saving my post so i lost it as a result and scrambled to write a new one so i did make a few errors that could be confusing or misconstrude.

Please dont think I was directing that at you Teekay.

and yes i know my spellings terrible.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Teekay » Fri Mar 13, 2009 4:36 pm

darth jason wrote:Teekey,

It does not suprise me one bit that you are in middle school I had already deduced that you were fairly young. I must say you have made some very compeling arguments and brought some light on a very touchy(for some) and so it seems complicated scenario.


Hey, are you one of those "Guess Your Age" peoples at the fair? ;) I guess you could tell from my posting style, though.

darth jason wrote:I see we missconected with your oil analogy. I had taken the position of the crude to refined product cost variant totally negating the mention of ebay as you have stated because well that would be pointless but it dosent happen. In otherword raw material cost to finish product to the consumer. I dont think oil is a good analogy for this problem they are two extremely different animals.


Tyrant wrote:Well, that's a matter of practicality. Gasoline, by the nature of it's intended use, is highly volatile. It's not something most shipping companies would like you sending through their system. If it were stable, you can bet there would be a market for it. The best comparison I can think of is Gold. Gold can be (and is) sold on Ebay. Gold can be turned into jewelry or wiring or whatever, but it is also bought for potential future value. Buying Gold a few years ago would have been for the long term. Right now it's bouncing around enough in a short period that you can do it short term. I won't compare them to diamonds (even though they have similar market properties as gold) because their price is artificially inflated and eventually their value will drop sharply once enough people wake up to that fact.


Well, I agree that oil is a bad analogy. However, I also think that gold is not analogious to LEGO either. For example, when a LEGO set goes out of production, that particular one is never released again. Sure, it may be updated, but as a collector, I would want the old version as well as the new version. Gold, oil, and stocks all go up and down, and are always on the market, and also they are not collectable. (Just random thing. To your remark on gold being sold on eBay, Tyrant, I had to see if just blocks of gold are on there. So I went on eBay, and searched for it. Unfortunately, my wording was bad, and I searched for gold bricks. The first thing I came up with were the LEGO gold bricks. :lol: )

darth jason wrote:As for how someone reselling legos at an inflated rate in an current/open market really hampers anyones lego set availability, im not convinced in the least. If someone buys 5 fighter tanks at the retail price(usually above msrp) then attempts to resell them onlive at well over their intended price, plus shipping(which is usually inflated too) and possibly tax when there are other sellers that have competative prices, and lately from what Ive seen have free shipping, what kind of person does that? As well if we are only talking retail stores, well i guess that would be relevent to your sphere of influance, and when your pretty young thats a pretty small one. You hampered with only being able to go where either your parents/relatives/friends can take you or you can take yourself which at any age is different for everyone.
And as we all know limited discresionary funds can be a pain and/or a sore subject.


A moron thats who.


Well, I didn't mean that they would immediately sell them online. I guess I wasn't clear. I meant bought them to sell them years later on eBay and make profit. And of course they inflate shipping. And of course they use tax as an excuse. Yes, I rarely do get to go to Target, and yes, I hardly get any money ($20 per month spending money). But as a response to the moron idea, no, they are not morons if they are selling them years later. They know precisely what they are doing. But next time I'll be more clear. (And by the way, I knew you weren't refering to me with that moron thing. No offense taken.)

darth jason wrote:When you mark things up from wholesale in alot of industries the standard number thrown around is 20%, now thats mark up not profit...The market determins that, period. Anyone remember what happened to the comic book and card market in the late 80's and early 90's when the bottom fell out? But what your saying is someone skip this and buy something at MSRP or higher and then marking up and reducing their profit margin even further. Ive worked in trucking for a long time and profits are at 7% conservativly and thats with a lot of money coming in and going out. So someone destroying their retail profit margin which is way higher than services since your selling widgets and not hours/labour and all the gooblygook.


Okay, you know I wasn't around during the late 80s and early 90s. But I get the basic idea. However, this paragraph of your post isn't very clear to me. What you seem to be saying is that from wholesale, the RP is usually 20% markup. Now, I think you're saying that the market determines profit, which makes perfect sense. And I'm not sure what you are saying in your last few sentences. What I said was people buying multiple sets at MSRP and selling them online for a markup. That does happen. Check 7666 on Bricklink and you'll know what I mean. Then you say you've worked in trucking and, working conservatively, your profit is 7%, and there is a lot of selling and buying. However, the last sentence, I don't understand at all.

darth jason wrote:Using this we can say that...

Lego dosent produce enough sets to cause a market deflation, the world economy is doing that right now since little stock of any kind is moving and inventories are high, thus all the sales..and there are alot of them.So sorry but unless they go out of business prices arent going to rapidly drop.


Okay, you're way off track here. I am talking about people reselling LEGO online, not LEGO selling sets at retail. I'm not complaining about prices, nor is anyone in this thread. The only prices we are complaining about are scalpers selling the sets online.

darth jason wrote:Lego dosent produce few enough sets for someone pacticing this type of "scalping" to really hamper anyones ability to pick up a set in the retail market or online. If it does..How can you prove that, whos to say 5 different people didnt buy the 5 tanks? And if they did its not hurting anyone they should have used some initiative and called the store for availability and had one held.Now this is different if someone holds on the the sets and resells them later when the sets are out of production but again its all relative to the market.


Okay, I'll try a specific example. Lets say, 7666, is sold at Toys "R" Us and is known to be limited edition. There is one scalper (hereafter known as "Gregory") who walks into to TRU knowing this, and prepares to take advantage of it. He sees the shelf space for 7666. Gregory knows that once these are gone there will be a frantic scramble for these online. So he buys all five on the shelf, ready to resell them in 6 months. Half an hour later, a seven year old (hereafter known as "Little Timmy") comes into the store. For weeks, he has been saving for 7666. He is set on getting one today. Little Timmy walks to the LEGO aisle, and finds the space for 7666. He sees that there are none there. Little Timmy leaves the store unhappy just because one guy wanted to make some money.

On 5 different people buying the tanks, what happens happens. Just so long as it wasn't one guy intent on making money. On calling for availability, most parents don't do that.

darth jason wrote:It seems these "scalpers" are pretty easy to put out of business being that they are obviously not that bright and not real scalpers but poor hustlers and i dont think this is a real problem just more of a boogy man explanation for why stores maintain poor stocks. thats why scalpers do shows its a limited engagement, the prices only go up close to D-day and if it sells out earlier they go up faster, there is no stock to maintain and it is as defined a "quick turnover", trying to sell a lego set for 25% over retail plus shipping while others are moving stuff cheaper is not going to have a fast turnaround.

Bottom line dont buy from someone like this you'd be a bigger fool then they are.


Okay, selling it for 25% over retail online is feasibly going to happen after market. Again, look on Bricklink at 7666, and keep in mind that the retail was $50. They are scalpers, because they are buying multiple items to sell them at a profit. And this is a real problem. Just read this quote from Ace earlier in the thread:

Ace, who is our founder and therefore a reliable resource, wrote:I'm totally going off here, but how many of you remember the big star wars day at toys r us last summer to celebrate the 30 yr anniversary? i was at san diego comic con that day and we went to the local TRU. once we were let inside, one guy took his cart and loaded up on 7666, took every single set he could find. 10 minutes later, i see a little boy and his grandma, no joke, looking through the lego stuff. I asked what they were looking for and they said 7666. i told them to ask one of the workers for more and told them that there are no more on the shelf (since they wouldn't restock until there was room). a few seconds later, the kid happy as a clam walked up to the cashier. the mom thanked me cause i had the foresight to know how those stupid midnight releases worked. had i not been there, he would have gone home disappointed. just because there were other means of getting it, it wouldn't have been as much fun for that boy. slurping up all the available stock can make you a rich man for sure, but at the cost of affecting others negatively.


As you can see, this is a real problem that does touch many lives.

Okay, as a side note, I have to stop using "but" to start my sentences. I get in the habit, then I use it at school which makes my teacher mad.

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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby The Brain » Fri Mar 13, 2009 6:03 pm

I can see Teekay's point, and I have to say I think it's being a little overlooked:

Of course it's ridiculous to say that Lego scalpers actually impact the world's amount of on-the-shelf Legos. There is simply no way that could be true, unless the scalper ratio for Lego products was something like 10/sqaure mile. However, I think Teekay's point is a valid one, if seen like this:

Scalpers may not affect the overall stocks of Lego products, but when they clear the shelves from a local area, whether it's from a big-name store or not, they have a huuuuuuge effect on the local populus' buying habits. I, like you Darth Jason, live in the NorCal "41510" area, so I know for a fact that shops in my area don't restock very often. I, like Teekay, have a very restricted budget, so once I've convinced my parents to let me browse a store for a Lego set (I usuall check both online and in the store before I go out and buy), I rely on the very nearby stores to have the set. If a scalper (or just a large number of people) have cleared the shelves of sets, then I just have to go back home and hope it comes back soon, before I have to spend my money on some other essential item (like movie tickets ;) ). So yes, scalpers can affect people in a city directly and hugely. The only difference between having one person buy out a store's inventory and a ton of people buying one item each that clears it out is that the scalper knew beforehand that he would--the other casual shoppers just snatched it up before the set they wanted disappeared.

Btw, Teekay, could you please reenable your PMs? I wanted to send you something.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby ThinkingImpaired » Fri Mar 13, 2009 8:33 pm

I think you two have stretched this topic out to a whole different dimension. If anybody buys out a store's stock of a set, motives aside, it's tough luck for anyone else who was planning on getting that set. Come back when they restock. Go to a different store. Get them online. If it was a limited release like 7666, again, tough luck. Should've gotten it before it was sold out. No one is entitled to getting anything they want at any time they want...if they believe they do, they'll have many more problems in life than just missing out on buying a building toy.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Puddleglum » Sat Mar 14, 2009 6:50 am

ThinkingImpaired wrote:I think you two have stretched this topic out to a whole different dimension. If anybody buys out a store's stock of a set, motives aside, it's tough luck for anyone else who was planning on getting that set. Come back when they restock. Go to a different store. Get them online. If it was a limited release like 7666, again, tough luck. Should've gotten it before it was sold out. No one is entitled to getting anything they want at any time they want...if they believe they do, they'll have many more problems in life than just missing out on buying a building toy.


I agree that the American sense of entitlement seems to be coming into play here, and it's also worth pointing out that it is the responsibility of LEGO and the retail stores to meet consumer demand. If they don't have the set you want when you're in the store, you should let someone know. When there are empty shelves and people looking to buy LEGO, the retailer is missing out on sales.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby ufjason » Mon Mar 16, 2009 7:41 am

Well, here's my latest haul. I was traveling for 6 days straight for work and found some deals like the troll warship for 30 bucks but didn't want to haul any of them back home on a plane. I hit my secret walmart and found a huge amount of sets on clearance. They sold the last at-te but I found plenty of other good deals. Total spent was just under $450 dollars. The Skeleton Towers are going for just over $60 dollars right now so they pay for 2/3rds of my investment alone. The lady in the toy department was so happy, she said they couldn't get rid of a lot of their clearance. I left quite a bit there so there's some good finds out there still!

Akator: $30
Torrent: $21
Magna: $17
Temple Escape: $21
Skeleton Tower: $18
Copter Rescue: $15
Bionicle 8954: $7
Agents 8633: $15
Dwarves Mine Defender: $3
Dune Buggy: $1
Mobile Police HQ: $15

Image
eBay store, contact me if you'd like to perform trades from my inventory. I'm looking for original genosian fighers, second version a-wing fighters and tie bombers. I may be interested in other sets so let me know what you have.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:33 am

Puddleglum wrote:
ThinkingImpaired wrote:I think you two have stretched this topic out to a whole different dimension. If anybody buys out a store's stock of a set, motives aside, it's tough luck for anyone else who was planning on getting that set. Come back when they restock. Go to a different store. Get them online. If it was a limited release like 7666, again, tough luck. Should've gotten it before it was sold out. No one is entitled to getting anything they want at any time they want...if they believe they do, they'll have many more problems in life than just missing out on buying a building toy.


I agree that the American sense of entitlement seems to be coming into play here, and it's also worth pointing out that it is the responsibility of LEGO and the retail stores to meet consumer demand. If they don't have the set you want when you're in the store, you should let someone know. When there are empty shelves and people looking to buy LEGO, the retailer is missing out on sales.


Boy this has been fun. I think the reference to entitlement is very fitting. This is a really good lesson in capitalism where the basic axiom applies.."Sometimes your the windshield,sometimes your the bug".

I appriciate the con argument more and more as we go along. The one point that i can give is the argument that someone can close out a small, local retail inventory. Making someone have to work a little harder, but not enough to make me change my opinion of the free market. Do empathize with poor lil 6 year old and grandma going to the store for not, thats not a good day out for them. I do not offer them any sympathy however because this is simply not a big deal. So they have to go to another store, or maybe g-ma has to, god forbide, talk to someone at the store and have them order one from lego or reserve one, or possibly plan ahead order one on line and have one for "little billy" when he showed up at the door.

So I pretty much have concluded that this isnt really about scalping at all, because none of the negative criteria that defines scalping has really been reached,not even close. the closest scenario being the example above IMO. To me it sounds like reselling as a whole is the real problem with the con folks, except that rare reseller who holds on to lego sets and then resells them later at original cost, frankly these people are about as plentifull as leprechans or unicorns.

I think the moral high horse is purly defence mechanism. I just found that most folks that usually get upset about situations like this are always the "have nots" and not the "have's"; the old ,"well i dont likethis" or "i dont have this so it must be wrong". There are just to many "me,me,me" scenarios to really call this a moral argument. Morals are realative dependent on environment and they are,to a degree, a total matter of opinion and/or environment.

If the con folks were able to get these lego sets well below cost is that wrong? If you ran into a person like this would you all point out to the seller that these are too cheap? In this scenario is this seller a victim of the consumer?

I asked a similar question earlier that was universally ignored by the con folks; it would be interesting to get their opinion on this.
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby darth jason » Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:36 am

Nice haul uf jason!
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Re: A digression on Scalping...

Postby Puddleglum » Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:12 am

ufjason wrote: The Skeleton Towers are going for just over $60 dollars right now so they pay for 2/3rds of my investment alone.


Wow, I can't believe there are still Skeleton Towers lingering around at Wal-Mart.
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