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How do we lessen the influence and hold the flippers/scalpers have on the market?

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by St. Matthew, May 23, 2021.

  1. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Central PA
    Kill Record Store Day. Try a barista outside the store on nice days instead. Stop manufacturing "flipper/scalper bait" for event-oriented sales.

    You want people who love the records to come in to buy the records? Sell the records, not the manufactured holiday.

    Once flippers and scalpers don't know which ones are supposed to be valuable, because they're all for sale in the same shop every day...that removes their motivation.
    Man at C&A, CHALKERS, Muzyck and 3 others like this.
  2. hobbes4444

    hobbes4444 Forum Addict

    I think it's fairly straightforward: many people fueling the vinyl resurgence are of a certain age and income and have more disposable income to spend and have had fewer options in the pandemic.

    Simple supply and demand. Demand is rising and the companies pressing vinyl know this and do all the right things to drive demand and limit supply. Press fewer copies of more titles and they can ask and get higher prices for each title. People also line up for days for sneakers...

    So yeah, either don't buy into the limited pressing stuff and ignore the shiny sparkly one, or get the wallet out. And get ready to repeat the latter if that's your choice. Cuz the companies will give the people what they want... and the flippers will be there to exploit it as well... Not much to stop it other than keeping the wallet in your pocket
    Last edited: May 23, 2021
    Musical Chairs and rcsrich like this.
  3. SpinIt

    SpinIt Active Member

    Paris, France
    Interesting one. It could lead to saturation on the secondary market…bringing the prices down… :D
    Cool Chemist likes this.
  4. Cool Chemist

    Cool Chemist Forum Resident

    Bath, England
    Yes, I think it would and part of this too is staying sharp to the market/doing your research. A flipper can always lose money too. Some RSD products are cheaper to buy now than they were on RSD.

    If people are slow to pull the trigger they only have themselves to blame and actually if they do miss out, how keen were they to have the release in the first place?
    SpinIt likes this.
  5. kwadguy

    kwadguy Senior Member

    Cambridge, MA
    Welcome to the Avon Bottle era of music collecting.

    Eventually, this top shall pass, and the real collectables will be differentiated from the manufactured ones.
    Man at C&A and rod like this.
  6. elaterium

    elaterium Forum Resident

    It’s hard to fix greed and selfishness.
    CHALKERS likes this.
  7. bosskeenneat

    bosskeenneat Forum Resident

    Those with half a brain know how pirates, counterfeits, bootlegs & the industry-changing Napster got started. Just tell some fans they can't get certain music for whatever reason.
  8. elaterium

    elaterium Forum Resident

    I’ve been in situations where I’ve had the opportunity to buy more than one copy of a limited release. I could have had copies to flip for a profit. It didn’t feel like the morally correct thing to do so I didn’t. I realize I’m in the minority here.
    CHALKERS and aseriesofsneaks like this.
  9. Andy Pandy

    Andy Pandy Forum Resident

    Brussels, Belgium
    One issue is that there is no straight line between the flippers and serious record stores anymore. A number of online record stores take the opportunity and adjust their prices upwards as soon as they see that an item is increasing in demand or is about to go OOP. Doesn’t help the situation.
    Man at C&A likes this.
  10. Vinyl Addict

    Vinyl Addict Forum Resident


    No, the ones who pay thier prices do.
  11. Musical Chairs

    Musical Chairs Forum Resident

    One store I go to attempts to avoid selling to flippers. Limits multiple copies sold, essentially refuse service to known flippers. I don't know how viable that would be for an online business.
  12. Maurice

    Maurice Forum Resident

    North Yarmouth, ME
    This is it, exactly. Don't give them the business. Like it or not, we as the target customers have to let go of that dreaded Fear Of Missing Out and accept that some titles won't make it into our collections. And I'm saying this to myself as much as anyone else...
  13. Flippers/scalpers exist in so many areas. Just try finding a PS5, Xbox Series X or some of the new PC graphics cards. But at least in those situations the manufacturers are trying to manufacture more, with LPs/discs the manufacturers set low limits. Assuming they know supply/demand I’m surprised they don’t increase the numbers at least a bit as additional copies become cheaper the more they make (meaning manufacturing costs). Unless the stores - particularly the big RSD stores - request them to keep levels low to increase hype/drive traffic to their stores?
  14. A.K.A. the flipper/scalper enablers — A.K.A. the flippers’/scalpers’ best friend!! :realmad:
    Last edited: May 23, 2021
  15. St. Matthew

    St. Matthew Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    Releases these days seem to be created with them in mind. These super deluxe editions, limited edition vinyl, etc are what flippers’/scalpers’ inventories are made out of. The reseller mentality plays too high a role in releases.
  16. lv70smusic

    lv70smusic Senior Member

    San Francisco, CA
    What's in it for the record company, assuming your scenario is true? Unless you are suggesting that the flippers/scalpers work at the record company so they both make the decision to limit availability and then profit when there isn't enough product for readily available buyers, I just don't see how record companies "catering" to flippers/scalpers makes any financial sense for the record company. They don't make any profits on resales.
  17. Jamsterdammer

    Jamsterdammer Forum Resident

    They need flippers/scalpers to drive up the prices once the limited release is sold out so that people are willing to pay the exorbitant original price upon release in the knowledge that if they miss out, prices will quickly go up. The flippers/scalpers are creating additional scarcity which increases the exclusivity and therefore the value of the release. Record companies definitely don't hire flippers/scalpers do what they do, but they certainly don't mind them either and won't do anything to stop the practice.
    joachim.ritter and quicksrt like this.
  18. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    City of Angels
    I love the Newbury "Exclusives" of colored vinyl LPs. They are limited most often to 500 to 750 copies of each LP title. They are priced at $25 to $30 per title. So while that is not super-high priced, the numbers are rather limited. So when a new title is announced and forthcoming, and it if is a stone classic, I check to see if I can find out of it is an all-analog cut. If it is a stone classic and analog cut, and very limited colored vinyl LP I am interested in it for my own collection. And because I've seen prices skyrocket on these the minute they run out at the retail website, I tend to order two copies of anything and everything I am buying at Newbury.

    Kevin Gray cut Joni Mitchell "Blue" on blue vinyl I grabbed not too long ago. Got two of them... and it was all sold out the next day. All of the classic Frank Zappa titles I also grabbed two copies of on colored wax. I have yet to flip any of them, but I am keeping in mind that the day will come when I do. And I'll do well on those still sealed, stickered shink, limited CV beauties.

    But I am passing on the big expensive limited box sets. Too much money I can blow elsewhere. Oh, I did grab the limited big box of the G. Dead "Get Shown The Light" which features the Barton Hall, Cornell ' 77 show from the Betty Boards tapes. And I will flip that eventually as well. But I only bought one of them for myself to enjoy and not flip.

    So I can see both sides of it.
    Jamsterdammer likes this.
  19. markshan

    markshan Forum Resident

    Pittsburgh, PA
    In my experience the only way to beat the flippers is to be faster than them. Get to the release before they do.

    It sucks when it doesn't happen. I wanted a copy of the FOW on MOV recently enough that I pre-ordered on two different sites, one foreign and one domestic. Neither one came through for me. I wanted the album but I don't want it at scalper price.
  20. Joseph.McClure

    Joseph.McClure Forum Resident

    Memphis, TN
    What is fow & mov?
    CHALKERS and quicksrt like this.
  21. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    City of Angels
    Yeah what is FOW? I'm not quite cool enough to know that one I guess.
  22. Neonbeam

    Neonbeam All Art Was Once Contemporary

    Planet Earth
    Fountains Of Wayne on Music On Waynyl Vinyl. Even though Discogs has multiple copies starting from 24€.
    markshan likes this.
  23. Neonbeam

    Neonbeam All Art Was Once Contemporary

    Planet Earth
    I don't think you can really "fix" it. And while I don't mind paying a bit extra for something I really want and missed out on, I'll freely admit that I occasionally buy two copies of a limited item myself to finance purchases like this. What I wouldn't do is paying grossly exaggerated prices or trying to sell something for an unreasonable amount of money. It's a fine line.

    But let's face it: Most of these quickly gone items are either colour variants or signed editions. 9 out of 10 times there's an available alternative. Box sets are a different beast. But boxsets also are a flippers nightmare since p&p can be a real pain. The recent Mars Volta box for instance. I was on the fence but I totally knew that I'd better make up my mind now. So I ordered one. And still haven't opened it. It's now being offered for 200€ more than what it originally retailed at. And I still haven't made my mind up...

    Bottom line: Don't pay grossly exaggerated prices. Especially not for releases that are newer than 15, 20 years.
  24. St. Matthew

    St. Matthew Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    But good intentions or not, you two are part of the problem. You’re buying up extra stock, especially very limited stock, with the intention of flipping it for a profit later. That’s exactly the problem. That flipper mindset has been a bad influence on the market.
    Man at C&A likes this.
  25. Neonbeam

    Neonbeam All Art Was Once Contemporary

    Planet Earth
    You have to roll with the times. And there's absolutely nothing wrong in playing the game occasionally. Better than bitching about it. :cheers:
    Man at C&A and 4-2-7 like this.

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