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HAK
06-03-2002, 07:43 AM
hello all there is a question that has been bugging me for a while now and id like to hear what you all think. my question is this: how do you feel about the people who take boxes of figures off of the pallets in stores before they are supposed to be out? personally i hate them.i hate their guts. what ****es me off even worse are the jackasses wo sit there with baby food and clothes in their carts and wait until they think you are gone and go rip the boxes open with their keys- now they dont just take one or two of each figure- they take them all- or all the short packed ones... man that irks the hell out of me- the one time i ever opened any box on the pallets was after i asked the closest employee if she could open it for me- well she said "ok" and i got o of each figure i wanted leaving the others for people more deserving than the jerks who dont even give me (average joe, nice guy) a chance- now im sure some of you do this and some of you dont but what makes you do it and why do you feel justified in doing so? if not why do you feel it is wrong? should i join the fold and hunt them down like this or should i just continue down the average joe route im on?

icatch9
06-03-2002, 08:30 AM
Well, buying mulitiples of any figures for scalping reasons is bad. I think we all agree on that. Second I am your average Joe collector and I have opened boxes on pallets and will again given the chance. These products are in the store and are for sale. I've heard all the BS about safty, and othere stupid reasons why WM doesn't want people doing this. It is thier blind policy to try and stop scalpers, and it's still not working. I open these boxes because I'm there looking for something new to buy. When the racks are empty of things I need, then a fresh box would surely provide me with a new item. I don't see why you hate this practice so much. Would it be any different if you saw a case of that new cereal that you wanted in the food department? Even though there are tons of other kinds of ceral on the shelf. Wal Mart is in business to sell products. If the products I want to buy are on a pallet then who cares. I don't have the time to waste waiting around for an employee to get around to putting the Star Wars stuff out.

The reason I feel I need to do this when I can is...because if I don't someone else will. A scalper will walk in 5 minutes later and buy the place out. I leave what I don't want in the box, but I do buy what I want. If that means two Dookus or two Zuttons, or two Sebulbas, then so be it. I have the right to buy what ever I want.

Forhekset
06-03-2002, 08:57 AM
I haven't ever done it, but I imagine if I had the chance to open up a fresh box and take what I needed, I would. I'm gonna get 'em sooner or later....

pthfnder89
06-03-2002, 10:06 AM
Originally posted by Forhekset
I haven't ever done it, but I imagine if I had the chance to open up a fresh box and take what I needed, I would. I'm gonna get 'em sooner or later....

Same here. I've taken some out of already open cases that are still on the pallet but never opened one myself.

All of the stores around here seem to have totally stopped putting action figure pallets out in the aisles. I guess they were tired of people jacking them open.

JEDIpartner
06-03-2002, 10:10 AM
I've never done that, but my "scout" JediDrew most certainly has! :D

Figure hoarding is unacceptable. Cracking open fresh cases and getting away with it is fine! :happy:

Exhaust Port
06-03-2002, 11:14 AM
It seems like such a double standard. Scalpers are bad because they buy more than just one in an attempt to make money. They use shady tactics sometimes to get their figures. As a Collector I feel that I have the right to buy several figures to complete my collection (MOMC and loose). I have to use shady tactics sometimes to compete with the Scalpers. If I don't do it then someone else, perhaps a Scalper will.

I worked in a toy store for a while and saw both sides of the arguement. You'd be suprised how similar they look to the store workers. I'd help out anyone who came to me looking for a figure. I could care less what they plan on doing with it after they leave the store. Some of the collectors carry this "Holier than Thou" attitude when it comes to toy availability. "How could you let that guy leave with those 4 figures when I needed them for my collection. He was just going to sell them again later but I'm a COLLECTOR." Um....so?

If I watch someone come in and buy every Yoda I can really care less. Maybe he's a hugh Yoda fan and collects as much Yoda stuff as he can. Most people, even the scalpers, are willing to share with those looking for figures in the aisle. If someone's pulling all the Dooku's down and you want one just ask, I've seen it work I swear. Once they're in line to pay for it it's a little to late.

I'm not a "Scalper," just a guy with a different perspective.

Sir FanBoy
06-03-2002, 12:29 PM
Well, a lot of us would open a fresh new box full of ATOC if given the chance. Now depending on your view of this, this may give the impression to some ppl that you are scalper getting first dibs. Well if it is then it is, and if its not you will have a reason like what many of the ppl here have been postin. What i beleive is that you can do whatever you feel. Cause your the customer and you have the right to purchase how ever many you want.

Im not defending scalpers in any way and it may sound like it but that is the truth. The only way to play their game is to beat them to it simple.

You get what you want and leave the rest for other ppl is a very logic way of hunting.

icatch9
06-03-2002, 01:11 PM
I agree with Exhaust Port and Sir Fan Boy. A lot of collectors seem to think they are better or more important that other customers (scalpers). Just because we don't plan on selling them doesn't mean WM or TRU give a crap. I mean as long as they are selling what do they care. In fact these stores probably like scalpers deep down, I mean they are buying a ton of figures where you and I are only buy one of each. I know some stores have put limits on what you can buy but that sort of infringes on our rights as a consumer. Anyway, I've never seen it work.

The thing about scalpers is that they try really hard. These people are at the stores everyday. They are grinding it out, finding these things before you do. Basically they want it more than you. Sure they just care about $$, but who doesn't. I am not a scalper, but I do go to an awful lot of stores. To many, it's quite sick. I'm sure to many people it's crazy. Still, I have had terrific luck with all sorts of collectables. I have seen every single star wars figure and vehicle on the shelf for retail on time or another. On average I've paid retail or less for 95% of my collection (and my collection is 95% complete). I'm not bragging, but I've shopped a lot in my day and have never had a problem finding anything I've wanted. Sure, some of it's luck, but a lot of it is just time. This hobby takes a lot of time, if you don't want to pay scalper prices. I've put it in, and been rewarded with a full collection.

What people want is to be able to go to any store and buy any figure, without any hassle at all. Well, that's never going to happen. What Hasbro does and I think they are doing very well this time around (I've lost count on how many Dooku's I've found) is produce enough figures for everyone. Just enough, not to many and not to little. If you are having a hard time finding the figures, just shop more. Go out of town and shop some more. Go to another state and shop some more. That is what it takes, and it's rewarding at times. Other times you strike out. It's that simple.

Jedi Juice
06-03-2002, 01:26 PM
I went to 10 different stores in 2 days, across the city, and found nothing. I only found an extra Dooku that another colelctor showed me..... I want a bloody Bespin Luke!

Jayspawn
06-03-2002, 01:40 PM
I agree with icatch9. The way I see it, if the box is sitting out on the pallet and NOT in the back, its a free for all. I do not promote scalping because it is moraly wrong and against the Collector's Code, but if Wal-Mart is leaving the boxes out in the open, then too bad.

Exhaust Port
06-03-2002, 01:43 PM
Originally posted by Sir FanBoy

You get what you want and leave the rest for other ppl is a very logic way of hunting.

This is the same line given by scalpers. I'm not saying you are Sir FanBoy, but people just have to realize that moaning because of the purchase habits of someone else is rather childish. There are certain aspects of the collecting hobby that are suck. Someone beating you to a figure in a store and turning around to sell it to you at a markup is somewhat disappointing. But I move on and look elsewhere. Thousands upon thousands of these figures are produced so I'm sure another one will turn up at a price I'm willing to pay or trade for.

I still don't understand how someone can justify opening boxes on a pallet that they know is against the wishes of the store. While your at it, why don't you just walk into the back and start routing through the boxes there. Heck, there's a truck back there just waiting to be unloaded, you could just go in there and start opening those boxes. Did you wait for the Ep. 2 toys to go on sale or did you (knowing that the toys arrived 2 days before) just walk into the storage room and open the boxes against the wishes of the store management. Talk about giving Collectors a bad rap. Yes the customer can only purchase a figure if they're available to that person. All you have to do is ask! If they don't want to place them on the floor yet then that is there right (remember, the store has rights too?). Stores want their goods sold and I've never had a problem getting toys by asking for assistance.

Saying that you NEED toys is a bit of a stretch icatch9. I enjoy my collection of toys as much as any other collector but I definately don't need any of it. I also won't go against the wishes or rules of a store because I think I know better than they do so I can see if they have what I want. What about that kid who was looking for a Yoda and patiently waited for the employees to put the new case on the pegs only to have some Collector come in and open the box and take it? It's just like we all have to wait for the store to open in the morning. The toys are right there in front of us, the store owners just have to be ready to sell them to us.

As for cereal, I've never heard of anyone asking a store employee "Do you have the new Rice Chex in?" :rolleyes:

Sir FanBoy
06-03-2002, 01:59 PM
Exhaust Port,

Well considering that I live up here in Canada, (im assuming you live in the states somewhere) the amount of the trilingual package is produced far much less then the american version.

Now I do feel I have the right to moan all i want cause since the trilingual packaging (Canadian version) is produced far much less, it makes it just that much harder to find the figures you want.

Im sure this is just my opinion but i can imagine where you are coming from cause if you live down by the states you get everything earlier and in the quantity is much larger than here.

I know, i know because of the population ratio. Still, there are a lot of Canadian collectors who would feel the same as i do.

That's just my 2 cents. :)

JangoFart
06-03-2002, 02:14 PM
Maybe I'm a bad person, but I've personally taken out my car keys and opened more unopened cases than I could count in my hunt for completing my collection. I buy what I need and leave the rest. I'll also get some for my friends, if they need them.

I TYPICALLY don't buy more than I need, but I have gotten a few extras of the rarer figures here and there to put on eBay. I have sold those for $10 - $12. I figure that's what my efforts are worth. Further, as I'm in the middle of nowhere Oklahoma and if you can't find these figures in Oregon, or wherever, I'm doing a service to my fellow collectors. (Can't wait for the flow of hate mail following that one, but it's the truth, like it or not.)

J

Hasbro'sBountyHunter
06-03-2002, 02:17 PM
I usally just ask the empoyee nicely and most of the time they let me scavanger through the boxes.

DarthBrandon
06-03-2002, 02:33 PM
I've opened the cases with my car keys, or should I say my wife has, while I was looking through the pegs. I find nothing at all wrong with this if your there to get some figs for yourself. I personally buy one to open and one to keep carded of certain figures. That's on average maybe out of 35 figs, I'll maybe have five doubles and the rest single. The guys taking all of the cases or all of the hard to find Items, I do not agree with this at all. You will know who is a collector or who is a scalper buy what he is buying period. Example guy number one has twenty figures that includes two doubles of Dooku, then you have guy number two, who has twenty figures of Dooku and Bespin Luke, ten each. Who is the scalper ? Number two of course. These are the individuals that you need to report to management or fellow collectors. And mind you where I live the pallets sit right in front of the display of action figures, waiting to be put out. If management or whatever had a problem with me opening them, which I doubt much, cause I know most of them, I would stop no problem. Personally I think some stores are alot stricter than others.

icatch9
06-03-2002, 02:53 PM
Well I do not need them like some sort of drug. When I say need I mean need for my collection not to live another day. Further more why should Star Wars figures be any different than cereal? It's a product in a store, what is the difference? I have asked employees at WM to open boxes and I have had poor results. After I asked an employee about the boxes he said no and went and got the specific boxes I questioned about and put them behind the electronics counter. That was rude and very poor customer service. So, youíre lucky to have nice employees where as the people I run into at WM seem more like former inmates.

Why should a kid be more important than me? Just because he's younger or these are toys? I've been buying these things since I was born (clearly my father bought them, but they were for me and I cannot remember not having them). I care about them as much as any kid does, despite my 23 years. I do not hoard figures or would not buy 2 or 3 Yodas in front of a kid who I knew wanted one. Still if I need a figure I'm not going to give one I found over to some kid I don't even know. Why not just give him $20 too?

I should not have to wait for employees to get around to putting these things out. Besides that could very well never happen. I could stay at WM all night, and they may never get put up. No kid is going to stand by to get a Yoda, especially at the time of night the racks are stocked. Stores do have rights, but we as consumers do too. If I see a box I would like to open I do it, I even have a special box-opening knife I carry around with me. So, what? The products I want are in those boxes. If a employee is not around Iím not going to wait for them. As I stated earlier it should be no different than any other product in the store. I sure wouldnít be shunned if I were to open a box of undershirts looking for my size. So, why should I be shunned for looking for that figure to complete my collection?

If you donít like it then donít do it. I assure you that others will, and you may very well miss out. I agree that these things will be found and all you have to do is wait. Still, I do not miss opportunities to buy something I need (that need as is need for completion of a set, not need as in need to survive). Iíve been burnt in the past, and do not plan to let that happen again.

Exhaust Port
06-03-2002, 04:23 PM
Originally posted by icatch9

The thing about scalpers is that they try really hard. These people are at the stores everyday. They are grinding it out, finding these things before you do. Basically they want it more than you. Sure they just care about $$, but who doesn't. I am not a scalper, but I do go to an awful lot of stores. To many, it's quite sick. I'm sure to many people it's crazy. Still, I have had terrific luck with all sorts of collectables. I have seen every single star wars figure and vehicle on the shelf for retail on time or another. On average I've paid retail or less for 95% of my collection (and my collection is 95% complete). I'm not bragging, but I've shopped a lot in my day and have never had a problem finding anything I've wanted. Sure, some of it's luck, but a lot of it is just time. This hobby takes a lot of time, if you don't want to pay scalper prices. I've put it in, and been rewarded with a full collection.


Well icatch9 and others, we might not agree on the whole box opening thing but I totally agree with what I quoted above. I've got to say that I too have probably seen 90%+ of the figures that I collect on the peg or shelves. When working in a toy store you can tell who the truly devoted collectors/scalpers are. There were there everyday and rarely left with anything but they also did eventually find everything they wanted. Not everyone has the luck of having several stores nearby that they can cruise through on a regular basis but that's just the way it goes. Actually I think it has to do more with the ratio of collectors/scalpers per store.

Having store employees withhold boxes of figures as you said is poor PR. I have to say that I've been pretty lucky in that regard. I'm sure flashing money or plastic in the eyes of the management at that store would put a stop to their employees withholding from buyers. All a store cares about is selling their products.

Another issue is what JangoFart mentioned, buying more than one figure to sell online for slightly more than they purchased it for. Is this scalping? By most definitions on this board it is. Personally I don't think that there is anything wrong with that. Several times after calculating the fuel cost of numerous trips to the store looking for figures it becomes cheaper just to pay more than the original cost online. It saves me trips (money) and compensates that person for their time/trips to the store. Someone who would benefit by this transaction wouldn't see it as scalping (I know I wouldn't). To those who felt they were wrongfully denied a figure at the store would complain. It's all just part of the game.

HAK
06-03-2002, 09:36 PM
well my point is this- i live in las vegas- there are about 10 wal-marts here- i go to all of hem on tuesday nights and out of those 10 i cant find ANYTHING (especially bloody luke- ive been looking for 2 weeks in a row now!) because some jackass ripped open the boxes before the employees could put them on the shelf like they are supposed to be. the one and only time i ever opened a box was when i ASKED the employee stocking them if she could open one for me because she was going to pt them out anyways and i didnt want to wait around for her to finish everything else she was doing- she said ok and i took 3 new figures and thats it. i left everything else for those who would like to actually buy them on the shelf. also i buy prett much 99% of my stuff off the shelf- the problem is that any hard-to-get figure i find has a damaged card- i still cant find darth vader on a good card- the one i have is like C-3. anyways i think if you have to resort to scalpers methods you are no better than the people who support their scalping practices- it seems like you have a "if you cant beat them join them" attitude- oh and cereal boxes where never short-packed and had bloody hand variants...

Exhaust Port
06-04-2002, 08:55 AM
I totally agree with you HAK.

icatch9
06-04-2002, 08:58 AM
It is a sort of battle field out there in the collecting market. It's not joining them, it's beating them to the punch. Case in point you cannot find a bloody Luke becasue someone open the boxes. Well, if you would have been the one to open the boxes you'd have a bloody Luke now. I haven't opened a star wars box since the Zutton wave first hit. I don't have a daily chance to do it. Still, I would given the chance. This is not scalper tactics, it's part of the collecting habits. If you don't do it that's fine, but others who are just collectors do. There is no need to ridicule them becasue you do not agree with them.

Again, it doesn't matter that Luke is short packed or bloody. He is still a product in the store just like cereal, underwear and drill bits. Why should toys be treated any different?

JangoFart
06-04-2002, 10:28 AM
Just got the official word from the Vatican, HAK:

Your canonization paperwork is ON ITS WAY! Your move to sainthood should be complete in a week or so.

......


I DO wish I had ladders to lend some of these folks so they could have the ability to climb off of their HIGH HORSES!!

J

KEBco
06-04-2002, 11:38 AM
A comment from someone who sells -
You can stop "scalpers" simply by not buying from them. If they can not sell their goods, then they will stop ripping open the boxes to remove the better figures.
I sell to everyone. Same price no matter if you by one figure or 100 figures. (We do have a little bit better price for our club members) Recently an order was processed for 12 Count Dookus. This was all that was ordered. Did I ask if this a TRUE collector? Did I care if this was a scalper? NO.
If this is a scalper and he expects to make a large profit on this "RARE" figure, then good luck. It's not rare and if this was a scalper, then maybe he will be stuck with a few Dookus.
But I'm not going to turn away any sale. TRU, Walmart, anyone will not, can not turn away sales. This is why we all are in business - to sell. It is a free market. Supply and demand. If there is no demand for a scalper's merchandise, then his supply may be available for someone else. :rolleyes:

Forhekset
06-04-2002, 11:42 AM
Originally posted by KEBco
A comment from someone who sells -
You can stop "scalpers" simply by not buying from them. If they can not sell their goods, then they will stop ripping open the boxes to remove the better figures.
I sell to everyone. Same price no matter if you by one figure or 100 figures. (We do have a little bit better price for our club members) Recently an order was processed for 12 Count Dookus. This was all that was ordered. Did I ask if this a TRUE collector? Did I care if this was a scalper? NO.
If this is a scalper and he expects to make a large profit on this "RARE" figure, then good luck. It's not rare and if this was a scalper, then maybe he will be stuck with a few Dookus.
But I'm not going to turn away any sale. TRU, Walmart, anyone will not, can not turn away sales. This is why we all are in business - to sell. It is a free market. Supply and demand. If there is no demand for a scalper's merchandise, then his supply may be available for someone else. :rolleyes:

Well said KEBco. You guys are great by the way. :)

pthfnder89
06-04-2002, 12:58 PM
Originally posted by KEBco
A comment from someone who sells -
You can stop "scalpers" simply by not buying from them. If they can not sell their goods, then they will stop ripping open the boxes to remove the better figures.

...TRU, Walmart, anyone will not, can not turn away sales. This is why we all are in business - to sell. It is a free market. Supply and demand. If there is no demand for a scalper's merchandise, then his supply may be available for someone else. :rolleyes:

Absolutely true. I don't expect any of the retail stores to turn away a scalper who is about to buy out all of their stock of a certain figure(s). That's bad buisness and the stores exsist to make profit. They have to.

I dislike almost all scalpers I run into; I'm sorry to generalize and stereotype but I've met more sweaty, overweight, scruffy-bearded men scalping Star Wars toys than any other type of person. Most of the ones I've met are simply unpleasant on a variety of levels.

But despite my dislike of what they do I rarely like to complain about them; I simply don't buy from them. I feel good because they aren't getting my money, and some scalper out there is hurt by that. That's all I feel the need to do. I'll either find figures I want somewhere else or I'll wait until they start showing up en masse at Target or TRU. (or from KEBco, Forhekset is right, you run a very good store:))