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frustrated collector


shazam
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So.... what happens when you want to buy an army builder type of figure??? do you limit to only one stormtrooper,clone trooper or cobra soldier,etc. per person????

 

Limiting figures is a ridiculous idea and a logistical nightmare for retail companies. Plus the scalper can just make seperate purchases... or they can be stocked and regulated like the cough syrup.

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Oh, so now you want the stores to not only implement limits, you want them to have separate bar codes for each figure as well?? Why don't you ask Mattel why they don't implement that kind of thing in the next Q&A--and see what the answer is.

 

 

You keep missing how I've repeatedly said that I never expect Walmart to go for this. Walmart is perfectly happy to move their entire stock onto a single customer and they certainly wouldn't bother with any extra effort simply to increase availability.

 

 

 

If there's scalpers ready and willing to bribe stock-people at stores to set aside goods for them, and people lining up at the crack of dawn to get into the stores first--what do you think those people will do when they are told there are limits to how much and what they can buy? I mean, c'mon.......you think you are a smart guy and have this all figured out.......what will these folks do? Will they take it laying down?

 

Do you actually think they'll cooperate because its a new rule to be fair to everyone?

 

 

Peruse this very thread and the many like it on other boards and you'll see how a number of collectors have already been calling Walmart and Mattel complaining of the current level of availability. Walmart doesn't seem to moved by a few phone calls. Will a couple of cranks call them complaining that they can't buy more than three Power Girls? Of course. Walmart will laugh at them and not care. The torches and pitchforks scenario you're postulating is extreme and unlikely. It's certainly nothing to shoot down the policy over.

 

 

 

BTW, you wanna see this in effect? Gather ten people, and have them all complain about a product........pick anything you like. Be vocal, raise a stink. Make your complaint real good, make it make sense in some way, and threaten to boycott the store as a group, and that you`ll tell your friends to do likewise.

Know what will happen? The store will probably pull that product. See, they figure that for every one voice of dissent they hear from, there's 10 more out there that also dissent, that they will not hear from. 10, quickly becomes 100, then 1000, then 10,000....or so they fear. They simply do not want to lose sales to their competition.

That's customer clout, and all its takes is an organized complaint.

 

 

Another unlikely ridiculous example. Consider that the debacle that was Wave 5 caused one of the greatest uproars of dissatisfaction I've ever seen. What happened as a consequence? Mattel and Walmart repeated the same exact tactic with Wave 10 and everyone is right back trying to buy them.

 

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Oh, horse #$##. Stores reordered that thing several times over--there were about 4 or 5 print runs of that book. I know of a dozen stores that had dozens (read as many as a hundred copies) of that title for years after the fact. They could not give them away. People who never bought comics before, bought it because they were told it was "valuable"--a load of hype that soon betrayed the lie about speculator comics. The stores LOST money on that title because they were left with loads of stock they couldn't do anything with.

 

DCUC isn't facing that kind of blitz of interest. DCUC is NOT popular--what a joke! It fills maybe two pegs wide on a aisle. It might get in 3-4 cases. Star Wars is popular--its takes up about a 1/4 AISLE--its get's a PALLET load of stock in at a time. Just because you are interested in a toy-line does not make it popular.

 

Well, now you're arguing in circles. If it's not that popular, then where would this uprising you fear come from? I ask this from a devil's advocate's perspective since I agree they aren't that popular outside of their own fanbase hence why I reject your earlier concerns about Walmart being flooded with complaints.

 

Back to the Death Of Superman example though, you can refuse to believe it if you choose but these limits were imposed. I saw the same restrictions being placed on the Death of Robin issue and an issue of The New Titans that featured George Perez's return to the Titans. Now whether DC over-produced subsequent printings is separate issue, but initially on that first print run, stores did indeed limit the number of copies a customer could purchase. Believe what you want though.

 

 

If you feel so passionately about this, put your money where your mouth is.

Go to your retailer, and ask to speak to the manager--tell them about your idea. Tell them what you have said here, and specifically what products you want to have limits placed upon, and why.

 

 

Candidly, you seem more passionately against this, than I am for it, but as I said earlier, I don't expect Walmart to go for this. Availability is not a concern for them ...at least not a major one. If it were, you just can't argue that a limit on purchases would help to promote that availability. You might not like limits in principle ...and honestly I certainly don't... but I see a need for them in matters like this. As Mattel has shown us before, they are unwilling to produce these figures in the numbers necessary to insure some type of shelf life.

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Candidly, you seem more passionately against this, than I am for it, but as I said earlier, I don't expect Walmart to go for this. Availability is not a concern for them ...at least not a major one. If it were, you just can't argue that a limit on purchases would help to promote that availability. You might not like limits in principle ...and honestly I certainly don't... but I see a need for them in matters like this. As Mattel has shown us before, they are unwilling to produce these figures in the numbers necessary to insure some type of shelf life.

 

Passion doesn't enter into this, I ENJOY poking holes into a bad idea. If you came along with a genuine GOOD idea, I'd support it just as heartily.

 

I said from the outset that your idea would never work, and why, and YOU JUST AGREED WITH ME, LOL!!!

 

I could care less either way, if you can or cannot get the stuff, because I know I can get these toys if I want them.

I don't need to advocate for arbitrary imposed limits and other nonsense like you do because I understand how to collect in a way that works for me.

I said earlier in this thread that there are other ways to get stuff that do not impose a stupid policy upon people, but hey, like many other learned-helpless people you continue to think that the the whole system is working against you.

You and the other whiners are not even willing to try a different apporach, and instead you tighten your grip on the idea that this stuff should be waiting for you to walk in and buy it. LOL! And I'm the one with ridiculous ideas in his head?? :rolleyes:

 

Hey, go on believing that, be miserable/frustrated/unhappy.....think of goofy ideas to limit purchases, blame it all on"scalpers" buying up your toys, blame it on Mattel/Walmart/whoever, and believe its all "so unfair". I have no sympathy for your dilemma, because you are so unwilling to change.

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Passion doesn't enter into this, I ENJOY poking holes into a bad idea.

 

Well, you're poking but so far no holes have formed. You just don't like the idea which I can understand.

 

 

I said from the outset that your idea would never work, and why, and YOU JUST AGREED WITH ME, LOL!!!

 

 

Whoa, Trigger! Don't break your leg running those victory laps just yet. I'm not quite sure where we're in agreement. If it's the fact that Walmart would never go for this idea, I've been saying that from the start so that would be a curious point on which to score a point. I've never argued whether Walmart would pursue this or not. Repeatedly I've underscored that Walmart is very content to dump their entire stock on one customer. This is irrelevant. IF, however, Walmart were interested in expanding the availability of the product, then it's difficult to argue that preventing the FIRST GUY to show up from buying the entire inventory wouldn't make it a little more available for others.

 

 

...and instead you tighten your grip on the idea that this stuff should be waiting for you to walk in and buy it.

 

Last summer, I bought a lawn chair. It was waiting for me when I walked in and bought it.

 

...And I'm the one with ridiculous ideas in his head??

 

That stuff about toy collectors getting organized and rising up against Walmart was pretty ridiculous, but I do believe its more out of desperation to make an indefensible point than any sort of intellectual flaw on your part.

 

I have no sympathy for your dilemma, because you are so unwilling to change.

 

I'm willing to entertain the idea of limiting the number of items an individual can purchase. Let's be very honest. You're just shooting it down because you don't like the idea for whatever reason. It's very difficult to argue though that it wouldn't keep the stuff on the shelves just a little longer.

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That stuff about toy collectors getting organized and rising up against Walmart was pretty ridiculous, but I do believe its more out of desperation to make an indefensible point than any sort of intellectual flaw on your part.

 

 

When there's multiple anecdotes about "scalpers" and other zealous toy consumers making a fuss over securing toys--to the point of running for the aisles, bribing stock people, getting into fights, taking item's from people's carts, then you are ready have the realm of the ridiculous at work here. When someone has a sense of "entitlement" about something, they tend to defend it, rather than abandoning it....and if a scalper sees his gravy train dry up or be crimped because of story policies, odds are VERY good he'll fight those policies.

How will he do that?

By using the most powerful tool in his arsenal: his patronage. Money talks, after all......and what retailer is going to pass up assured sales? The scalper is already deep into his own selfishness--what leap would it be to twist the whole reason for making a sale to him even more lucrative ( rather than punitive) for the store?

If a store listens to complaints of people that object to goods based on moral grounds, and pulls them from the shelves to prevent loss of customers--then why not reverse a instituted policy that some customers object to? Like I said before, they figure if one person complains, there's 10 more out there that agree with them--and if you get 10 customers upset with something that's a potential 100 customers that are upset. Stores do not treat those kinds of potential losses as "ridiculous thinking".

 

 

Last summer, I bought a lawn chair. It was waiting for me when I walked in and bought it.

 

Congrats, I know you worked hard to get to that point where you could.

Was it a collectible? If it wasn't, then what has it got to do with this discussion?

 

 

I'm willing to entertain the idea of limiting the number of items an individual can purchase. Let's be very honest. You're just shooting it down because you don't like the idea for whatever reason. It's very difficult to argue though that it wouldn't keep the stuff on the shelves just a little longer.

 

I'm shooting down the idea, because you don't seem to understand that imposing limits will make it HARDER for YOU to buy stuff, not easier. You think that if you simply address YOUR dilemma, it'll make it easier for everyone--but it won't because you are blind to the bigger reality.

 

 

But like I said before.......you go right ahead and cling to the ideas that its all hard, frustrating and what-not and that things like limits will change anything.

Frankly I do not worry about kooky ideas like imposing limits, I'm too busy enjoying the fellowship I've built in the hobby and trusting that it, patience, and other methods help me get the toys I seek for my collection.

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When there's multiple anecdotes about "scalpers" and other zealous toy consumers making a fuss over securing toys--to the point of running for the aisles, bribing stock people, getting into fights, taking item's from people's carts, then you are ready have the realm of the ridiculous at work here.

 

 

 

No. What you have is anecdotal evidence of a number of isolated extreme incidents. This is hardly anything WalMart is going to sweat. As I pointed out before, fans are spitting on Walmart still over Wave 5. Walmart remains unfazed.

 

 

Congrats, I know you worked hard to get to that point where you could.

Was it a collectible? If it wasn't, then what has it got to do with this discussion?

 

Ah! The ol' "I refuse to see your point therefore you have failed to make it," eh? Okay. I can play too. You said, "..and instead you tighten your grip on the idea that this stuff should be waiting for you to walk in and buy it" as if this were an absurd expectation. It's not. Most stuff ...including action figures... is bought this way.

 

Consider it as simply as I can possibly make it... Walmart lays out five Power Girls. The first guy to reach these figures wants to buy all five Power Girls. As things stand, he could scoop them all up leaving four potential customers who come after unhappy, disappointed and grumbling about how Walmart never carries this stuff. IF, however, there were some type of limit, all five guys would get Power Girls! Maybe that first guy was some scalper who wanted to grab all the PG's to list on eBay, but because he was denied the other four, Walmart now has AT LEAST FOUR satisfied customers.

 

See?

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Ah! The ol' "I refuse to see your point therefore you have failed to make it," eh? Okay. I can play too. You said, "..and instead you tighten your grip on the idea that this stuff should be waiting for you to walk in and buy it" as if this were an absurd expectation. It's not. Most stuff ...including action figures... is bought this way.

 

Consider it as simply as I can possibly make it... Walmart lays out five Power Girls. The first guy to reach these figures wants to buy all five Power Girls. As things stand, he could scoop them all up leaving four potential customers who come after unhappy, disappointed and grumbling about how Walmart never carries this stuff. IF, however, there were some type of limit, all five guys would get Power Girls! Maybe that first guy was some scalper who wanted to grab all the PG's to list on eBay, but because he was denied the other four, Walmart now has AT LEAST FOUR satisfied customers.

 

See?

 

Heh, the "simple example" that has nothing to do with his other example. From Lawn chairs to Power Girls---OH ITS SO CLEAR NOW!!

 

 

Uh-uh.

 

Lawn chairs aren't scalped are they? They are not collectible, they don't have people lining up daily to find and buy them, and they certainly do not have people complaining when they cannot find them. That they are sold in a store along with Power Girl toys means nothing. The conditions by which you want to buy a action figure have NO BEARING on the conditions by which you both a lawn chair. If the store was sold out of lawn chairs that day, what would you do?

Would you come to the forums with your "lawn chair lament"?

Or would you have gone to another store and bought a lawn chair from someone else?

 

Me thinks the latter, just as any sensible person would.

 

 

But, nope......as I said, the rules in your head are vastly different when it comes to toys--and they are different because YOU MAKE THEM DIFFERENT. You set up all these unrealistic "if onlys" in your head, and you think that you have a legit gripe because you, exclusively, are unsatisfied.

I DO say you have absurd expectations, because the whole paradigm of collecting has changed, and you are not willing to change with it.

 

You do not have on-line forums dedicated to lawn chairs. People are just not THAT into lawn chairs.

You do not have people giving area reports about lawn chairs in said forums, or reviews for that matter.

 

You do not have people scalping lawn chairs--which, btw......what is the scalper markup on lawn chairs these days anyway?

Lawn chairs are not considered collectible, certainly not by the collecting culture here.

No-one will give a rat's ass if you buy up all the lawn chairs in your store, and no-one will listen to you if you gripe about not finding them.

 

Action figures ARE different in these respects though.

 

You do have forums dedicated exclusively to action figures and the whole collecting culture revolving around them.

Unlike lawn chair fandom, people use these toy forums to learn about the figures AND scalpers also use the same info to find figures before you do. I assume lawn chair fans get their info from.........store flyers? Or maybe calenders with lots of chicks in bikinis....I dunno.

Action figure collectors work themselves up into a lather trying to find toys......lawn chair collectors.......do they do.......anything???

The people that do care about action figures are typically going to be adults with disposable income, and with a specific agenda to buy stuff to fuel their nostalgia and collecting aims.

 

That's a much more focused customer than someone looking for a lawn-chair to park their ass in.

Cannot find a lawn chair and most people settle for the ground to sit on instead. The ground works.

 

Cannot find a action figure and NOTHING else will do as a substitute.....except maybe having conniptions. They do not even TRY anything else--complaining is SO easy. So is blaming others. And so follows the wacky ideas like not letting scalpers buy toys, or imposing limits or carding collectors......believe me, I've heard them ALL in forums like this.

 

 

 

But in the midst of all that......if you cannot find a lawn chair on a store visit , what do you REALLY do? I mean, c'mon.....the store is out......none in stock......what do you do?

Pinch a snit?

Pout?

 

Do you demand that limits be imposed so everyone can have their fair share?

Do you accuse scalpers of taking them all?

Do you decry the retailers for not ordering enough, couch the manufacturers in conspiracies to under-produce and foment demand?

 

No.

 

You wait until some more come into the store, or as said, you go to another store to find one......or if you are REALLY in a stink about it, you borrow one or get someone to send you one.

 

 

But action figures.......nope........you say its this rule that you gotta be able to walk into a store and buy with your own two hands. In the flesh.

Anytime you want.

Or else.

 

 

Absurd.

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Ah! The ol' "I refuse to see your point therefore you have failed to make it," eh? Okay. I can play too. You said, "..and instead you tighten your grip on the idea that this stuff should be waiting for you to walk in and buy it" as if this were an absurd expectation. It's not. Most stuff ...including action figures... is bought this way.

 

Consider it as simply as I can possibly make it... Walmart lays out five Power Girls. The first guy to reach these figures wants to buy all five Power Girls. As things stand, he could scoop them all up leaving four potential customers who come after unhappy, disappointed and grumbling about how Walmart never carries this stuff. IF, however, there were some type of limit, all five guys would get Power Girls! Maybe that first guy was some scalper who wanted to grab all the PG's to list on eBay, but because he was denied the other four, Walmart now has AT LEAST FOUR satisfied customers.

 

See?

 

Heh, the "simple example" that has nothing to do with his other example. From Lawn chairs to Power Girls---OH ITS SO CLEAR NOW!!

 

 

Uh-uh.

 

Lawn chairs aren't scalped are they? They are not collectible, they don't have people lining up daily to find and buy them, and they certainly do not have people complaining when they cannot find them. That they are sold in a store along with Power Girl toys means nothing. The conditions by which you want to buy a action figure have NO BEARING on the conditions by which you both a lawn chair. If the store was sold out of lawn chairs that day, what would you do?

Would you come to the forums with your "lawn chair lament"?

Or would you have gone to another store and bought a lawn chair from someone else?

 

Me thinks the latter, just as any sensible person would.

 

 

But, nope......as I said, the rules in your head are vastly different when it comes to toys--and they are different because YOU MAKE THEM DIFFERENT. You set up all these unrealistic "if onlys" in your head, and you think that you have a legit gripe because you, exclusively, are unsatisfied.

I DO say you have absurd expectations, because the whole paradigm of collecting has changed, and you are not willing to change with it.

 

You do not have on-line forums dedicated to lawn chairs. People are just not THAT into lawn chairs.

You do not have people giving area reports about lawn chairs in said forums, or reviews for that matter.

 

You do not have people scalping lawn chairs--which, btw......what is the scalper markup on lawn chairs these days anyway?

Lawn chairs are not considered collectible, certainly not by the collecting culture here.

No-one will give a rat's ass if you buy up all the lawn chairs in your store, and no-one will listen to you if you gripe about not finding them.

 

Action figures ARE different in these respects though.

 

You do have forums dedicated exclusively to action figures and the whole collecting culture revolving around them.

Unlike lawn chair fandom, people use these toy forums to learn about the figures AND scalpers also use the same info to find figures before you do. I assume lawn chair fans get their info from.........store flyers? Or maybe calenders with lots of chicks in bikinis....I dunno.

Action figure collectors work themselves up into a lather trying to find toys......lawn chair collectors.......do they do.......anything???

The people that do care about action figures are typically going to be adults with disposable income, and with a specific agenda to buy stuff to fuel their nostalgia and collecting aims.

 

That's a much more focused customer than someone looking for a lawn-chair to park their ass in.

Cannot find a lawn chair and most people settle for the ground to sit on instead. The ground works.

 

Cannot find a action figure and NOTHING else will do as a substitute.....except maybe having conniptions. They do not even TRY anything else--complaining is SO easy. So is blaming others. And so follows the wacky ideas like not letting scalpers buy toys, or imposing limits or carding collectors......believe me, I've heard them ALL in forums like this.

 

 

 

But in the midst of all that......if you cannot find a lawn chair on a store visit , what do you REALLY do? I mean, c'mon.....the store is out......none in stock......what do you do?

Pinch a snit?

Pout?

 

Do you demand that limits be imposed so everyone can have their fair share?

Do you accuse scalpers of taking them all?

Do you decry the retailers for not ordering enough, couch the manufacturers in conspiracies to under-produce and foment demand?

 

No.

 

You wait until some more come into the store, or as said, you go to another store to find one......or if you are REALLY in a stink about it, you borrow one or get someone to send you one.

 

 

But action figures.......nope........you say its this rule that you gotta be able to walk into a store and buy with your own two hands. In the flesh.

Anytime you want.

Or else.

 

 

Absurd.

 

Did you really go through all this just to explain the difference between lawn chairs and action figures? All I can say is that you must enjoy typing!

 

This is all so horribly, horribly afield of my main point that I don't even know where to begin. I'll refrain from any further analogies as you are clearly too distracted by their literal meaning and seem unable divine the broader more poignant message. I stand by the final illustration of my last post as the best example of why a limit would succeed...

 

"...Consider it as simply as I can possibly make it... Walmart lays out five Power Girls. The first guy to reach these figures wants to buy all five Power Girls. As things stand, he could scoop them all up leaving four potential customers who come after unhappy, disappointed and grumbling about how Walmart never carries this stuff. IF, however, there were some type of limit, all five guys would get Power Girls! Maybe that first guy was some scalper who wanted to grab all the PG's to list on eBay, but because he was denied the other four, Walmart now has AT LEAST FOUR satisfied customers."

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"...Consider it as simply as I can possibly make it... Walmart lays out five Power Girls. The first guy to reach these figures wants to buy all five Power Girls. As things stand, he could scoop them all up leaving four potential customers who come after unhappy, disappointed and grumbling about how Walmart never carries this stuff. IF, however, there were some type of limit, all five guys would get Power Girls! Maybe that first guy was some scalper who wanted to grab all the PG's to list on eBay, but because he was denied the other four, Walmart now has AT LEAST FOUR satisfied customers."

 

Yea, yea yea.......its "simple".

Until someone wants more than one......and then what?

Lovely supposition, but it only works if your 5 customers willingly abide by the conditions you've set out.

You loaded it with "maybes","if only's" and other assumptions.......all of which will not stand in any reality.

What if someone wants to army-build?

What if someone wants to customize?

What if someone wants to keep one MOC and open one?

What happens if someone wants to buy up what they can and send to friends elsewhere who cannot get the figures?

 

Those are four of the most common reasons to buy more than one.....and you'd want to say "tough beans" to each of those kinds of collectors, just so you can have ONE figure?

 

You'd actually want to make things unfair to them, so it was "fair" to you?

 

I think they would have some problems with your simplicity.

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Yea, yea yea.......its "simple".

Until someone wants more than one......and then what?

 

 

You say "No."

 

 

Lovely supposition, but it only works if your 5 customers willingly abide by the conditions you've set out.

 

Most customers would. There's of course always the chance of a crank who has a particular demand but you can't let those forge or derail a policy that has a broader objective.

 

 

What if someone wants to army-build?

What if someone wants to customize?

What if someone wants to keep one MOC and open one?

What happens if someone wants to buy up what they can and send to friends elsewhere who cannot get the figures?

 

 

You say "No" or you order enough to be able to institute a limit of two or three per customer. This should be a sufficient maximum to allow for most needs.

 

You can throw "What if's" at this all day long. Are you looking for the situation that will make me go, "Gee! I guess we should let that first customer buy up everything?" As I've said, you institute a limit and allow more people the opportunity to purchase the items and you'll have more satisfied customers. It is obvious that such a limit might ruffle some particular wants but I'll go out on a limb and speculate that the majority of DCUC buyers are buyers who want one or possibly two of each figure ...especially as these figures climb to almost fifteen dollars a piece. Those who want to army build Foragers are safely in the minority. The limit will satisfy the needs of the majority and make these figures available to a greater number.

 

You've been unable to deflect this. Instead you continue to throw up these peculiar situations as if they mattered on a larger scale.

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You can throw "What if's" at this all day long. Are you looking for the situation that will make me go, "Gee! I guess we should let that first customer buy up everything?"

 

No, you want to think that's the thrust of my argument here. Its not.

 

What I am getting at is that NONE of your argument is about fairness for everyone, its about what is only fair for YOU.

 

You cannot find the figures so you figure on a policy that works for you. And THEN you apply that its either "no" for the other guys, or that the store has to order more on a line they are still not entirely sure about.

That is why its a bad idea.

 

You've forgotten or neglected to consider several things along the way for your simple idea.

"Ordering more" isn't as simple as you think it is. Mattel ships out what they have on hand, and THEY determine the case assortments.

Many, many retailers have said they have NO control over what is inside the cases when they arrive at their stores. Mattel makes that determination. That is why they often cannot order cases with certain figures in them, when they run out.

 

Now, you'll just say that Mattel has to reform how it packs its cases, and institute a policy of shipping to order.

 

And again, its not about fairness to everyone but instead only about what is fair to you. Mattel is going to distribute what it has on hand, based on how it sees each assortment selling.

They do that well beforehand, based on several factors, such as character appeal, package size and weigh, and its not easy to change on the fly.

Those are factors that affect the cases shipped all the way from the factory floor to the store shelves, and if you come along after the fact and say " hey, we don't want THAT"......then Mattel is stuck. They've already committed, but you have gone fickle on them and the retailer is caught in the middle.

Look at just about any action figure toy-line with peg warmers for examples of this.

Just ordering more isn't a solution, because I'll bet that, by and large, most collectors over time find a way to get these toys. That means that the stores are likely ordering enough to meet the actual demand and that ordering above those limits will leave excess stock that will not sell through. And that is not fair to the stores.

 

But you ignore all that, as its just about you, and only about what you think is fair--in others words......it goes back to your own consumption.

As long as you can get yours, as long as its all constructed so that you get what YOU want, it doesn't matter much about the other guys.

You feel that you do not need to change your buying habits, you feel that everything around you has to change to accommodate you.

 

Unfortunately, for you, the marketplace for action figures has changed to the degree that what you used to do (and how you currently think) doesn't work anymore. That is why you are frustrated and cannot find the stuff.

 

Its not going to change for you, like the cliche' says: you need to be the source of your own change.

 

I've made the change, others have made the change and we get results and are happy collectors.

No-one is going to wait for you.

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I'm jumping in here completely unwilling to enter into the previous arguments just because I want to say something. I'm not here to fight, just to propose an idea.

 

I think the biggest problem with the action figure industry today is that many companies seem to be caught in the mentality of the collectible industry of the 1990's. Yes, the good old days of rare comic book covers, holographic trading cards, individually numbered limited run Star Trek figures, Charizard TCG cards, and chase figures. Back than, so many collectors seemed to collect because it was the nature of the hobby, not because they truly loved the things they bought. Rarities and special editions existed just to exist and give folks something to chase and brag about. The intention was not that collectors would have a complete set, but that they could hope to stumble across some rare items which they could resell.

 

But the market has changed. Most of us like to read our comics and keep up with the monthly stories. We don't care if the comic is rare with a special cover or not. We tend to enjoy the aesthetic and fun of action figure collecting, not just the thrill of owning something that Beckett or Action Figure News and Toy Review labels as valuable. I want characters I enjoy, not special editions that are meaningless and painted Gold or silver. Most of us buy our action figures because we enjoy them and like to play with and display them, not because we intend to resell them some day.

 

In a lot of ways, I think some companies still have this idea that collectors collect just to collect, not because they enjoy the product itself or the property it is based on. I myself never intend to sell or part with my collections because I enjoy them. I don't care if my figures are worth $1,000 each or $.01 each. I own them because I enjoy them. While I still enjoy walking in my local store and finding a cool figure, I don't hunt anymore. Gas is too expensive. As a full time grad student with two jobs, a wife, and two dogs, my time is too valuable. I'd rather just order my toys online and be done with it, so the majority of my money will go to companies who make their product available to me.

 

Imagine if anything other than action figures (not all of which still cling to the 90's mentality) were produced and sold like action figures. "I'm sorry sir, we're all sold out of G.I. Joe the Movie and won't be getting anymore in stock." "I'm sorry sir, but the new Weezer album will only be available at select Target stores across the country, each of which will only get 10 copies." "I'm sorry sir, but Modern Warfare 2 won't be stocked until we sell out of all these copies of Modern Warfare 1." "I'm sorry sir, but we have decided that your particular brand of toothpaste is only inserted 1 to every 4 cases."

 

Yeah, its a silly example, as those things sell more product, but hopefully it makes a point. The crash of the 90's collectors market shows us that people just want to buy what they want to buy, nothing more. Most folks are less interested in having something rare and valuable than having some cool that they like. Most of us just want to be able to pay money for toys, and yet some companies seem dead set against this.

 

Hopefully, experiments such as Mattycollector and the rise of preorders and subscription services will grow and develop. While they charge too much and you have to pay shipping, online stores are certainly making a nicer move towards rectifying the 90's mentality of toy collecting, recognizing that we nerds have disposable income and just want an army of superheroes/robots/army men/monsters to line our bookshelves and look cool. Nothing more.

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What I am getting at is that NONE of your argument is about fairness for everyone, its about what is only fair for YOU.

 

 

You're projecting here. Stick with what you know for certain.

 

I certainly would benefit from a policy that would make these figures more available but so would all those frustrated collectors currently posting about their fruitless Walmart runs. On a bigger scale, Walmart, Mattel, and the hobby would benefit as well.

 

or that the store has to order more on a line they are still not entirely sure about.

 

I hate to mindread but I think at this point, after ten waves and a number of exclusives, Walmart seems pretty on-board with DCUC.

 

 

You've forgotten or neglected to consider several things along the way for your simple idea.

"Ordering more" isn't as simple as you think it is. Mattel ships out what they have on hand, and THEY determine the case assortments.

Many, many retailers have said they have NO control over what is inside the cases when they arrive at their stores. Mattel makes that determination. That is why they often cannot order cases with certain figures in them, when they run out.

 

Now, you'll just say that Mattel has to reform how it packs its cases, and institute a policy of shipping to order.

 

And again, its not about fairness to everyone but instead only about what is fair to you. Mattel is going to distribute what it has on hand, based on how it sees each assortment selling.

They do that well beforehand, based on several factors, such as character appeal, package size and weigh, and its not easy to change on the fly.

Those are factors that affect the cases shipped all the way from the factory floor to the store shelves, and if you come along after the fact and say " hey, we don't want THAT"......then Mattel is stuck. They've already committed, but you have gone fickle on them and the retailer is caught in the middle.

Look at just about any action figure toy-line with peg warmers for examples of this.

Just ordering more isn't a solution, because I'll bet that, by and large, most collectors over time find a way to get these toys. That means that the stores are likely ordering enough to meet the actual demand and that ordering above those limits will leave excess stock that will not sell through. And that is not fair to the stores.

 

And here we see your love of typing...

 

I never touched any of this. It has nothing to do with my point. I'm not going to play "armchair retailer" and as I've said before, I leave the logistics to Walmart.

 

 

 

But you ignore all that, as its just about you, and only about what you think is fair--in others words......it goes back to your own consumption.

As long as you can get yours, as long as its all constructed so that you get what YOU want, it doesn't matter much about the other guys.

You feel that you do not need to change your buying habits, you feel that everything around you has to change to accommodate you.

 

 

Again, don't project.

 

 

 

Unfortunately, for you, the marketplace for action figures has changed to the degree that what you used to do (and how you currently think) doesn't work anymore. That is why you are frustrated and cannot find the stuff.

 

 

The market has changed to a degree but we're not talking about an item that we could buy online here. Wave 10 is sold exclusively through Walmart. The only alternative is to buy these figures on eBay for prices that are often flat out outrageous for figures that are shipping as we speak! Unfortunately as things stand, ONE guy can walk into any Walmart and buy their entire stock of Wave 10 leaving every customer who comes after the choice of either doing without or paying obscene prices on the secondary market.

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Stop and think about what your saying.

 

I have.

 

Retailers imposing limits on something as inconcequential as action figures won't solve your problems. Scalpers will still scoop them up, whether they can only buy two per person or twenty.

 

No answer is absolute, but a limit will help alleviate the situation.

 

 

You wanna stop the guy who buys up three cases of action figures, don't buy them online or at comic stores. If these douche bags can't sell their ill-gotten gains, then they're out a couple of hundred bucks on the figures alone. When they take a big enough loss, they'll stop scalping. Self-correcting problem.

 

I'm not sure if boycotting online stores and comic shops will help increase availability as much as it will just hurt the demand for DCUC. Boycotting gaugers on eBay though is another matter.

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ARROW, on 09 November 2009 - 11:20 AM, said:

What I am getting at is that NONE of your argument is about fairness for everyone, its about what is only fair for YOU.

 

 

You're projecting here. Stick with what you know for certain.

 

I certainly would benefit from a policy that would make these figures more available but so would all those frustrated collectors currently posting about their fruitless Walmart runs. On a bigger scale, Walmart, Mattel, and the hobby would benefit as well.

 

 

Projecting??

 

LOL, this is basic psychology.

 

Let's look at some certainties you have missed here:

Look back over these threads, the whole of the DC toys threads here on TNI. Make note of how many people have found the recent waves ( 8,9,10 etc), and then make note of who has offered the waves to others BEFORE they have met their own needs.

 

You'll find not a single person doing so.

They ALL meet their own needs, before they offer up the stuff to others.

No-one has said..........hey, I'm not even collecting these figures, but if I find some, I'll offer them up for people here.

No-one has done this, not even you.

 

You sense of "fairness" or even charity, starts AFTER you have your own needs are met.

 

You are not even interested in taking a proactive step to direct your own collecting, you want a store to institute a policy that you think will work for YOU, and then you go about dismissing other valid buying/collecting reasons that conflict with your idea--all while saying your idea is all about "fairness".

 

 

 

And look at your own comment above:

 

I

certainly would benefit from a policy that would make these figures more available but so would all those frustrated collectors currently posting about their fruitless Walmart runs. On a bigger scale, Walmart, Mattel, and the hobby would benefit as well.

 

You placed yourself first in your own thinking, before others.

 

That's natural, and that is what I've been saying all along.

You are not making this argument about limitations for anyone else but yourself, your supposed "altruism" comes AFTER your own needs being met. Every other person is doing the exact same thing.

I'm not projecting anything, I'm reading exactly what you are really saying on this matter.

 

 

 

The market has changed to a degree but we're not talking about an item that we could buy online here. Wave 10 is sold exclusively through Walmart.

 

And this will remain a constant? You are assuming that these figures, certainly the in-demand figures will NEVER be sold in a subsequent wave, or never at other retailers on another occasion.

The opposite of BOTH have happened.

Mattel has added in certain figures from earlier waves into recent assortments ( called a "Best of.." wave, or something like that) and they have offered figures up again in 2-packs and sometimes with different decos.

Walmart, Target, even Toys R Us have ALL offered "exclusive" product before that became available via other retailers.

I was able to get the "supposedly" exclusive Walmart Marvel Legends waves from retailers in Canada, when Walmart Canada was not even carrying them. Its no projection to say that a sizable amount of the figures being sought now will reappear, at some point and in some manner.

 

 

The only alternative is to buy these figures on eBay for prices that are often flat out outrageous for figures that are shipping as we speak!

Thus, the learned helpless doth spake.

 

I guess the "other alternatives" never occurred to you?

 

Never occurred that you could ask a fellow collector to help you get the stuff for cost plus shipping, or even straight karma bombs?

Never occurred to you to perhaps search a bit further afield, while on your travels ( which is what fellow collectors in other cities would essentially do anyway)?

Never occurred that you can find a retailer that you can build a patronage with, who will do you the favour of ordering these toys in for you--perhaps even selling them to you at just above wholesale cost too?? ( They DO exist)

Never occurred to you that you can order some of this stuff from a retailer, say in Canada, where the dollar exchange rate means you get a DISCOUNT on what you would pay in the USA, and who would likely ship free for a large order--and you'd pay about the same OR LESS than what you'd pay locally? ( Yea, they do exist too!)

Never occurred to you that patience can net you these figures after the furore for them has died down--that a delay is not a denial?

 

 

Nope, the only alternative you can think of is Ebay. Its no wonder you are frustrated. :rolleyes:

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And look at your own comment above:

 

I

certainly would benefit from a policy that would make these figures more available but so would all those frustrated collectors currently posting about their fruitless Walmart runs. On a bigger scale, Walmart, Mattel, and the hobby would benefit as well.

 

You placed yourself first in your own thinking, before others.

 

 

Or maybe I just wrote it that way. You're really fishing here ...and you're trying without a pole!

 

Once again, I'll benefit from this policy but so will everyone else. Will it seem less self-involved if I said "Everyone will benefit from this and so will I?"

 

On Election Day, I voted for a particular candidate that I felt would improve circumstances in my district. I'll certainly benefit from this candidate's efforts but so will the district. This isn't selfishness. It's cause and effect. (As an aside, I know I said I'd refrain from analogies. I really hope I haven't invited some long-winded, meandering discourse on the differences between politicians and action figures!)

 

Come on. Let's stick to the main point. I'm starting to suspect some mild trollery here.

 

And this will remain a constant? You are assuming that these figures, certainly the in-demand figures will NEVER be sold in a subsequent wave, or never at other retailers on another occasion.

 

 

I guess SOMEDAY Wave 5 will be re-released in some form.

 

Will it be released in it's entirety? What about Metallo? Waiting for these re-releases, how long until I can completely assemble all of Wave 5? A few years?

 

Is this TRULY preferable to a limit that will allow us to buy the figures NOW?

 

 

 

Never occurred that you could ask a fellow collector to help you get the stuff for cost plus shipping, or even straight karma bombs?

Never occurred to you to perhaps search a bit further afield, while on your travels ( which is what fellow collectors in other cities would essentially do anyway)?

Never occurred that you can find a retailer that you can build a patronage with, who will do you the favour of ordering these toys in for you--perhaps even selling them to you at just above wholesale cost too?? ( They DO exist)

Never occurred to you that you can order some of this stuff from a retailer, say in Canada, where the dollar exchange rate means you get a DISCOUNT on what you would pay in the USA, and who would likely ship free for a large order--and you'd pay about the same OR LESS than what you'd pay locally? ( Yea, they do exist too!)

Never occurred to you that patience can net you these figures after the furore for them has died down--that a delay is not a denial?

 

 

Or we could have a practical limit that will improve the odds of my being able to walk into Walmart and buying them. I don't want my hobby to become a chore.

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I've had people bash me before because I collect two of every DCUC figure. One to open and one to keep sealed. When I saw Wave 10 for the first time, I bought 1 of each figure, and an extra Batman, Joker, and Power Girl because that is the only doubles they had. Some people I know who collect in the area got mad and said, "Why would you buy doubles right then, and not leave any for other collectors?!?!? That is plain selfish! Exactly like the scalpers!" They say stuff like this, and I do not see it as selfish at all. No one else would see something like Wave 10, and NOT buy one of the figures they need so that someone else can get it. I collect 2 of each and always have, so I am not going to pass one up when I don't know if I will see it again just so someone else can get it. I have the money to do this, so I am going to do it. I have never scalped a figure, but I will keep collecting 2 at a time when I can find an extra. I do not hunt as hard for the extra as I do the sealed one I get, but I still look for them. Since I do this, does that make me not a "true" collector? I don't think so at all. There have been times when I had one and needed the extra to open, but someone I know did not have it yet and was still looking, and I told him about it so he could finally get it. As far as just leaving it so some random collector I do not even know goes, I am not going to NOT get a figure I need so that someone else can. The people who complain and say, "Oh, you only care about YOUR collection!", you guys need to realize that ANYONE who collects cares about thier collection FIRST and foremost, even the people complaining. If I see something that a fellow collector needs, and I can not afford it at the time, or I already have it, I will be glad to let the person in need know, but anyone who says thier collection does not come first is lying to themselves and everyone else. I have known people to actually hide figures so that when they can afford them, they can come back and get them from the hidden place in the store. I think this is going a little too far, but thats about it.

 

Also, to the people saying Wal-Mart should care more about the collector and implement certain rules as to how many figures someone can buy, or even saying that Mattel should change certain things, this will NEVER happen. Wal-Mart is not going to put a limit on anything. If someone shows up and buys EVERY DCUC figure, that is better for them because they are making sales. They are not going to change anything with thier toys, because Wal-Mart cares about making money, not pleasing a collector. No matter how much you complain, they 100% KNOW you are going to buy from them, whether its alot, or JUST for the DCUC Wal-Mart exclusive waves, and they know if you don't, someone else will. They care about 1 thing. Making money. That is the reality of it, and that is just how it is.

 

Lastly, the people saying that when the scalpers take a big enough loss, they will stop scalping. No, they won't. This is because if they are smart and know what to scalp, they will not take a loss, because no matter how much it is preached NOT to buy from scalpers, people STILL will do it. So the scalpers will STILL make thier money.

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Come on. Let's stick to the main point. I'm starting to suspect some mild trollery here.

 

If I was going to troll, I'd have attacked you personally.

Instead, I'm attacking your idea--those are two very different things.

 

Let's face it, if your idea was sound, you'd have people chiming in to support it. So far there's been no-one.

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I personally think that lines like DCUC are doomed to fail. You can not have a sustainable toy line at a brick and mortar store without having kid appeal and parental cash flow. I am going to go out on a limb and say Wave 12 will be the last wave sold in the wild. From there it will go to internet and Matty exclusives.

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I personally think that lines like DCUC are doomed to fail. You can not have a sustainable toy line at a brick and mortar store without having kid appeal and parental cash flow. I am going to go out on a limb and say Wave 12 will be the last wave sold in the wild. From there it will go to internet and Matty exclusives.

 

I might have to reluctantly agree. But I also think that it depends on what the expectation are from the retailers and manufacturers on the toy-line. Both parties tend to have a rather hard-line approach to what makes a line successful enough to continue, and what fails. I think the expectation is a certain amount of growth in sales for the line to justify continuing, but.....again, the projection they have in their head might be a trade-off in growth, in exchange for consistent exposure of the brand in market ( yes, I know that given the problems with distribution, that statement is ironic). DCUC isn't Mattel's only thrust into the superhero action figure arena, so continuing it for the foreseeable future might be worth not getting considerable profits from it along the way.

I think though, that if the line loses its legs then the retailers and Mattel will have no compunction about killing it.

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Personally, I don't think there should be a limit, what I don't like it the mindset behind some of the purchases.

 

If a person buys them to sell at a 200 to 300 percent markup then I have a problem

 

If someone doesn't even collect something but knows its hot and buys them up to resell, I have a problem

 

If someone buys all they can from everywhere so they are the only resource for an item, I have a problem

 

Helping people and even making a little cash is cool and I know collectors are part the blame for DCUC wave 10 hitting 300 to 400 bucks, the overall experience with a limited local availability creates a frenzy on both sides, and all common sense is lost. Truthfully, there is enough for everyone to even have multiple sets, its the price and avenue that annoys me.

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I've had people bash me before because I collect two of every DCUC figure. One to open and one to keep sealed. When I saw Wave 10 for the first time, I bought 1 of each figure, and an extra Batman, Joker, and Power Girl because that is the only doubles they had. Some people I know who collect in the area got mad and said, "Why would you buy doubles right then, and not leave any for other collectors?!?!? That is plain selfish! Exactly like the scalpers!" They say stuff like this, and I do not see it as selfish at all. No one else would see something like Wave 10, and NOT buy one of the figures they need so that someone else can get it. I collect 2 of each and always have, so I am not going to pass one up when I don't know if I will see it again just so someone else can get it. I have the money to do this, so I am going to do it. I have never scalped a figure, but I will keep collecting 2 at a time when I can find an extra. I do not hunt as hard for the extra as I do the sealed one I get, but I still look for them. Since I do this, does that make me not a "true" collector? I don't think so at all. There have been times when I had one and needed the extra to open, but someone I know did not have it yet and was still looking, and I told him about it so he could finally get it. As far as just leaving it so some random collector I do not even know goes, I am not going to NOT get a figure I need so that someone else can. The people who complain and say, "Oh, you only care about YOUR collection!", you guys need to realize that ANYONE who collects cares about thier collection FIRST and foremost, even the people complaining. If I see something that a fellow collector needs, and I can not afford it at the time, or I already have it, I will be glad to let the person in need know, but anyone who says thier collection does not come first is lying to themselves and everyone else. I have known people to actually hide figures so that when they can afford them, they can come back and get them from the hidden place in the store. I think this is going a little too far, but thats about it.

 

Well, I hate to throw the "selfish" label around. Let's face it. Anyone who buys these figures is making it difficult for the customer who comes after and this is true whether you're just buying one or if your cornering the market. It's all about degrees though. Anyone who walks out of a store with cases of this wave is REALLY stacking the deck against the rest of his fellow collectors. A limit of say two figures per buyer would allow for most collecting needs while spreading the stock around a little more evenly.

 

 

Also, to the people saying Wal-Mart should care more about the collector and implement certain rules as to how many figures someone can buy, or even saying that Mattel should change certain things, this will NEVER happen. Wal-Mart is not going to put a limit on anything. If someone shows up and buys EVERY DCUC figure, that is better for them because they are making sales. They are not going to change anything with thier toys, because Wal-Mart cares about making money, not pleasing a collector. No matter how much you complain, they 100% KNOW you are going to buy from them, whether its alot, or JUST for the DCUC Wal-Mart exclusive waves, and they know if you don't, someone else will. They care about 1 thing. Making money. That is the reality of it, and that is just how it is.

 

 

Absolutely. This is why I never bothered with the nitpickery of how Walmart would or could implement this. My arguments have always remained theoretical.

 

 

Lastly, the people saying that when the scalpers take a big enough loss, they will stop scalping. No, they won't. This is because if they are smart and know what to scalp, they will not take a loss, because no matter how much it is preached NOT to buy from scalpers, people STILL will do it. So the scalpers will STILL make thier money.

 

No policy is going to be absolutely effective but consider that our goal here is to make the figures more available. Stopping scalpers is not the top priority and there is a difference.

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Let's face it, if your idea was sound, you'd have people chiming in to support it. So far there's been no-one.

 

This is meaningless.

 

People want what they want and when they want it. Other posters have rejected this idea largely because when they go to Walmart they don't want to be restricted in the number of figures they will be allowed to buy. This isn't necessarily out of selfishness. Some might sincerely be out to buy multiple figures for friends and so forth. I suspect though that if our fellow posters reached Walmart's bare Wave 10 pegs just in time to watch that Rowdy Whatsisname walk out with his four cases, they'd be screaming for some type of limit.

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No policy is going to be absolutely effective but consider that our goal here is to make the figures more available. Stopping scalpers is not the top priority and there is a difference.

 

I definately understand that the goal is to make the figures more available, but I am pretty sure Waves 8, 9, and 10 were produced alot less than other waves, so that makes those waves even harder to find. Mattel said they would be back to normal production numbers with Waves 11 and 12, which I really hope is the case.

 

Also, even though the goal being to make the figures more available, I honestly think if EVERY figure was as available as Dr Impossible and Mr Miracle, that people would not be as into collecting them. Seriously, everyone should think about this. If Wave 10 came out and at EVERY Wal-Mart, they had them stocked non-stop, and this was the way it was going to be from now on, I don't think it would be as fun collecting them. At first, we would ALL love it and it would be great because we would finally all be getting these SO easy. After time passed though, I think it would get boring. It would not feel like collecting. When I think of collecting something, I think SOME of what I am collecting is going to be rare and harder to find at times, but if all figures were readily available, it would really take that aspect out of it for me. I am sure alot of you don't agree, but half of the fun in collecting DCUC or any figure for that matter is the hunt for it. The ONLY time I buy off of the internet if when I absolutely have to. I love going to different stores looking for a certain figure. That way, when I finally find it, I appreciate it that much more. If I could just walk into any store that carries DCUC and leave with any figure from the collection, I honestly think that would suck after a while. Don't get me wrong, I am all about the figures being more available, but if they were THAT easy to come by, I think some collectors would eventually fall off the collecting wagon.

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