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 Post subject: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:25 am 
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Every toy show I go to I hear somebody say" __ killed the business/hobby." Whether it's spectators, eBay, picker reality shows, inflated retail prices, etc. To me the hobby isn't dead but it certainly is dying and a lot of it is cause by the buyers and especially sellers themselves.


Last edited by Smooth on Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:36 am 
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eBay and video games.
Plus the fact that the Gen Xers are getting older. We lived through the Golden Age of Action Figures (80's), but today's kids don't care because of Xbox and PS, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:26 am 
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I think ebay has actually prolonged the hobby- without it - I wouldnt have had access to some older off the wall stuff- keeps me looking..


Although video games is true-- I also think its the current crop of parents-- rushing their children to go up, stop pretending and playing , and just act like Mommy and Daddy-- the number of kids under 8 I see that have to have smart phones and need to go to starbucks is ridiculous..

Of course that acting like Mommy and Daddy- also means that they should be entitled to whatever they want, and a bunch of more negative things.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:45 am 
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3 3/4 figures costing $9.99 and 6" being over $15 a pop is a tough bullet for parents to bite. As far as vintage toys I've been collecting megos for a while and the collectors themselves inflated the prices by being completists and not paying the fair market value.


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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:31 am 
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I've been hearing this conversation since I was a kid.

LP collectors said this when CDs first took off.

Comic and Card collectors have been saying it for year.

Toy collectors have been saying it for years.

At some point, every collector pursuit feels it. It happens as times and people's focus changes. Nothing new.

Frankly, I don't see the industries "dying". Massive upheavals and changes? YES. As long as someone wants to collect, someone else will be willing and able to produce. Hopefully, the changes will be an evolution and not a denial laden lingering.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:42 am 
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This conversation isn't a simple one first off.

The internet has changed the way information is shared and consumed. We can now look up pricing, availability, variant production totals, place of origin, con exclusives, production runs and all manner of other information that just a few years ago simply wasn't available.

With more information being available, more avenues for buying and selling items have become available through outlets like, ebay, etsy, ecrater, amazon and an endless supply of 1 off sites and wordpress stores and outlets.

We no longer live in the dark ages where tales of prototypes and super rare action figure once littered the landscape and unscrupulous sellers could get away with selling bootlegs and calling them limited editions or prototypes.

The business hasn't been killed, it has changed, like everything after the invent of the internet.

Consumers now have more power and don't have to pay show prices any longer because there are more options. For people that sell as their livelihood. maybe it has killed the business, but like any business that wants to survive and prosper they need to and are forced to change with the times. If they cant adapt, they will perish, and so be it.

The business hasn't been killed, its being reborn, and people that say otherwise are stuck in the past and arent evolving to meet the changes of a dynamic information age where people no longer have to pay a guy at a show $100 for something they can get for $20 online.

The business will only get stronger as more information and access is gained by buyers and sellers, if they pay attention. Its all about information and whereas the show dealers once held the keys to the kingdom, now anyone can be a keymaster with just a few clicks.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 8:17 am 
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stewbacca wrote:
I think ebay has actually prolonged the hobby- without it - I wouldnt have had access to some older off the wall stuff- keeps me looking..
eBay has made tracking down specific collection wants so much easier than it was in the past. Selling items has also become much easier, as dealers don't have to pay hundreds of dollars for a convention booth where they may or may not make any money. Add the fact that a dealer's listings are exposed to a global market, and the idea that eBay has had any kind of negative effect on the hobby seems kind of silly. Now if vendors simply refuse to sell online and instead stick with shows exclusively, well, they're killing their own business.


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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 10:12 am 
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Ebay has become a double edge sword. Yes, it's made finding things easy as a click of button. However offline people use it as a price guide far too often and the prices on there... for comics which is my area to speak of are asinine sometimes. Simply because what most pay on there isn't for an investment it's people buying for their collections. When you're filling in something personally you're willing to pay more sometimes. I see this also with toys when I go to local flea markets. But has ebay really hurt us, NO, I don't believe so. It's simply helped us and given the hobbies in question much more exposure.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 10:37 am 
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As a big collector of another niche market (RPG's), Ebay has been a godsend for finding stuff, especially minis. But from what I've read from others, Ebay is currently geared much more towards buyers rather than sellers. I love it, but I don't know how the people selling me 2nd edition D&D books feel about it.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 3:11 pm 
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Pump and Dump has hurt alot as well. Load up on wave one or two and flood the stores so bad we dont see 3,4,5 in most stores so we go to BBTS or Evilbay.Stores get pissed and dont order 1/4 of what they do normally do

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 9:02 pm 
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Shellhead wrote:
As a big collector of another niche market (RPG's), Ebay has been a godsend for finding stuff, especially minis. But from what I've read from others, Ebay is currently geared much more towards buyers rather than sellers. I love it, but I don't know how the people selling me 2nd edition D&D books feel about it.

OH we so have to trade notes about our RPG collections

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:56 am 
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Van Statten wrote:
Ebay has become a double edge sword. Yes, it's made finding things easy as a click of button. However offline people use it as a price guide far too often and the prices on there... for comics which is my area to speak of are asinine sometimes. Simply because what most pay on there isn't for an investment it's people buying for their collections. When you're filling in something personally you're willing to pay more sometimes. I see this also with toys when I go to local flea markets. But has ebay really hurt us, NO, I don't believe so. It's simply helped us and given the hobbies in question much more exposure.


The notion of paying more to fill a hole in a collection isn't unique to eBay. That applies to buying from dealers at shows or shops too. We all do it but I would argue that it doesn't represent the norm. Over time, the average price of a particular item will reveal itself. There are just as many instances of an item underselling at auction because the seller perhaps didn't realize the auction would end on a holiday or another time when online activity is lower.

It all evens out. I would say that eBay is the best indicator of market value of something we've had; particularly if you look at the finished auction prices rather than the live buy-it now or starting prices. Much better than the self-serving price guides of yesteryear.

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 12:23 pm 
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Both are just as bad. Price Guides or eBay doesn't account for geography. Becuse we can't see locations of the winners or their names in most cases. eBay shows a good rating of interest. There's a rule of Three in research. If you can find something printed in three reputable sources, you can use it in a paper. I guess eBay could be used as one of those three but I don't recommend people stopping their research there. Just like back in the day we would use at least three different guides to determine a price of a comic book. Yes, Wizard was one them. :P

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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 2:05 pm 
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I don't have much more to add to what has already been said in this thread, but I did want to say i LOVE this discussion from everyone. it's a fascinating topic.

I agree that the industry is NOT dead, but it is shifting (again for a lot of the reasons mentioned above) and one of the reason IS price point. We are starting to see the tipping point of what people are willing to pay for a 6" or a 4" figure. And the limits are different from the "adult collector" and the "kids and moms" and the industry is coming around to that. They are still giving us some hyper-articulated 6" and 4" scale figures, but they are also bringing back the ole' 5 point of articulation in several scales. While we all understand that a line like DC Collectibles or Masters of the Universe Classics are made in FAR FEWER quantities than their mass retail friends, getting into the realm of $25-$35-$75 figures are starting to have an affect on collectors.

Another way it's shifting - the sale of girls toys on the rise and boys toys on the decline:
http://management.fortune.cnn.com/2013/ ... ahoo_quote


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 Post subject: Re: What "killed the Business?"
PostPosted: Mon Nov 04, 2013 12:35 pm 
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UncleMarsellus wrote:
I would say that eBay is the best indicator of market value of something we've had; particularly if you look at the finished auction prices rather than the live buy-it now or starting prices. Much better than the self-serving price guides of yesteryear.
Absolutely. A completed listings search on eBay is the only "price guide" anyone needs. Average the selling prices, and there's the item's market value.

JuliusMarx wrote:
Another way it's shifting - the sale of girls toys on the rise and boys toys on the decline:
http://management.fortune.cnn.com/2013/ ... ahoo_quote
Not terribly surprising. Other than Playmates' TMNT line, which is outstanding, the action figure aisles are full of the same old same old that's been there the last three or four years. I see a lot more creativity and imagination going into girls' toys while the boys' department is starting to get a little stale.


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