Shopping at LEGO or Amazon?
Please use our links: LEGO.comAmazon
As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

The Community Perspective on Reselling

1414244464758

Comments

  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,157
    edited January 2014
    There are shades of grey in the reselling, but also in other Lego related practices that some would find dubious. I have seen people on here that abhor large scale reselling, but dabble in it small scale and that's ok, or other practices that I find completely dishonest.

    I have seen some here knowingly collect Lego from Tescos that they know they haven't been charged for, all in the confusion of a Tesco misprice - is that not theft? They had the option not to collect or to ask Tesco to check payment had gone through or to ask for it to be charged again once they had it in their hand. Same person placed many orders to see a few get through the net.

    I have seen some cream off plenty of cheap sets that were in their budget to buy lots of and then trade them for chocolate - is that not a form of reselling?

    I have also seen a poster admit buying sets from one chain of shops and take them back to a different chain for a refund because they know the manager - fraud perhaps?

    As already mentioned by yellow castle, some of those same people bought WHS freebies by the armful to trade for other things later.

    Pretty much all of those examples above are of posters who are strictly against the resellers.

    Billy's/LFT's etc reselling is far more honest than the above examples. Resellers are just another tier of retail - and obviously they ask for their cut to make it worth their time and effort which bumps things up to retail or beyond it (depending how much the item cost them. They put in some work and research for their spoils. You can choose to pay the asking price or decide that it's not worth it and move on.
    dougtsbricknation
  • FenrisAkashiFenrisAkashi Member Posts: 242
    ^^ Well said.
  • SirKevbagsSirKevbags Fairy Land Member Posts: 4,027
    I'm all for the LEGO for chocolate trades. It was a happy day when the box stuffed full of Peppermint Patties arrived. Opened to reveal bag after bag :-)
    Yellowcastle
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    Can we please keep talk of hugs in the appropriate thread, this surely isn't it. Sometimes it feels like every other thread is about bloody hugging!
    SirKevbagsDadLegoboyBumblepantsLegobutterflyYellowcastle
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525
    edited January 2014

    CCC said:

    In the case of the candy, surely it is the fault of the giver not the taker. They should not have done such a limited amount.

    Its never the givers fault :-)

    They're the giver, its their property, they set the rules, and if the takers don't respect that then they don't deserve anything!
    Which backs up the point of view that resellers circumventing limits are unethical. They choose to play the game, but insist on their own rules.

    ^^^^^ I actually disagree, this may be about Lego but actually what irks me isn't the Lego rather it's the way people are happy to exploit others or just situations to the detriment of others. (ie making people pay waaayy over the odds for a toy at christmas). It's not the toy, to an extent not even that it's a toy rather that there's a hole and people in society, many of whom are clearly we'll educated and have decent jobs and hence don't rely on this money to live, are happy to turn that in to an advantage to make a quick buck. As such it isn't just a first world problem it runs deeper to what is community, society and the individuals' role within it.

    This also points to another problem with society. Why did all those parents feel the need to pay so much for something? There were loads of toys available at christmas, there were loads of lego sets, there were loads of minecraft books, nick-nacks and tat, yet they felt the need to buy one specific item. Force feeding kids by companies (and parents) into thinking they just have to have an item (and not just have it, but have it at a specific time) or they are somehow inferior is far worse than someone spotting that they can buy an item and sell it on to these parents for a profit. And as has been mentioned elsewhere, shame on lego for the way they didn't predict numbers at all well.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    edited January 2014
    The first international cuusso, nothing like anything before, no miniatures. Lego couldn't possibly have known until the original release by which time there is a very small window to manufacture before its too late for Xmas and that would have been an already rammed manufacturing schedule. Across Europe there were deliveries through December and in America I believe they arrived either just before or after Christmas. When did it go on release? When were the first sales figures passed up the chain? Print boxes, print instructions all before you pack sets, assuming you have the parts in stock. Could they have done better? Sure but not many multinationals would have either.

    (to put it in to perspective my wife worked for l'oreal at one of their factories. All the Christmas box sets were complete and in storage by the end of August and left over stock put on the staff ship through September.)

    Resellers jumped seeing the quick flip and upcoming Christmas demand. Where as Lego made a mistake that helped cause the problem the resellers knew exactly what was happening and deliberately made the problem worse in order to profit more. Again there were plenty of eBay sellers in the UK with well over 50 and plenty left on eBay on the 24th December. I still remember speaking to a store employee who thought it was sickening that she sold 5 minecraft to someone attending the VIP morning knowing full well they were heading to eBay.
    y2josh
  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,543
    edited January 2014

    Can we please keep talk of hugs in the appropriate thread, this surely isn't it. Sometimes it feels like every other thread is about bloody hugging!

    You're right, apparently it's the thread for being irrationally angry and emotional about whatever the previous comment was. ;o)

    I merely added - as an afterthought - a touch of humour to my relevant to the discussion post, which is to say my supporting @Yellowcastle 's well written summary of the dubious merits in continuing the cyclical and most unedifying of arguments which serves none of us well.

    Please accept my apology for interrupting your enjoyment of fight club.
  • rancorbaitrancorbait Manitoba CanadaMember Posts: 1,842
    So many opinions and beliefs! So many reasonable points coming from both sides I don't know what to think anymore! Like @Yellowcastle said, its something that has been raging on since the forum started, yet it doesn't seem to have gotten anyone anywhere, except to a divided community. All this debating (I would even go so far as to say bickering) is not benefiting us (and is certainly not a good example of what Brickset is to those who are considering joining) It has obviously not changed anyone's opinion on the matter so I see no point, I mean doesn't everyone already know "the community's perspective on reselling"?

    As far as I'm concerned this thread can be "thrown back into the fiery chasm from whence it came"! I want no part of it anymore.

    That's my two cents/pence (:-P) :-)
    legomatt
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,157
    edited January 2014
    legomatt said:

    Please accept my apology for interrupting your enjoyment of fight club.

    What is the first rule of fight club? ;)

    legomatt
  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 1,996
    legomatt said:

    Can we please keep talk of hugs in the appropriate thread, this surely isn't it. Sometimes it feels like every other thread is about bloody hugging!

    You're right, apparently it's the thread for being irrationally angry and emotional about whatever the previous comment was. ;o)
    I feel fairly certain @cheshirecat was being sarcastic and/or tongue-in-cheek with that one... I may be crazy, though.
    cheshirecat
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    Crazy for chrome, that is...
    y2josh
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525

    The first international cuusso, nothing like anything before, no miniatures. Lego couldn't possibly have known until the original release by which time there is a very small window to manufacture before its too late for Xmas and that would have been an already rammed manufacturing schedule. Across Europe there were deliveries through December and in America I believe they arrived either just before or after Christmas. When did it go on release? When were the first sales figures passed up the chain? Print boxes, print instructions all before you pack sets, assuming you have the parts in stock. Could they have done better? Sure but not many multinationals would have either.

    They knew roughly what the fan base was, and they knew how fast it made 10,000 votes on cuusoo. When it reached the target that quick, they must have known there was a large population willing to buy it.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    legomatt said:

    Can we please keep talk of hugs in the appropriate thread, this surely isn't it. Sometimes it feels like every other thread is about bloody hugging!

    You're right, apparently it's the thread for being irrationally angry and emotional about whatever the previous comment was. ;o)

    I merely added - as an afterthought - a touch of humour to my relevant to the discussion post, which is to say my supporting @Yellowcastle 's well written summary of the dubious merits in continuing the cyclical and most unedifying of arguments which serves none of us well.

    Please accept my apology for interrupting your enjoyment of fight club.
    Oops, think I forgot the ;-). I was just having a little laugh.
    legomatt
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,454
    Lootefisk said:

    CCC said:

    In the case of the candy, surely it is the fault of the giver not the taker. They should not have done such a limited amount.

    Its never the givers fault :-)

    They're the giver, its their property, they set the rules, and if the takers don't respect that then they don't deserve anything!
    Every Halloween I see the empty bowl and I think ..damn...next year I'm going to turn off my lights, set an empty bowl on my front step, and watch disappointed kids walk away all night long.

    Probably not but it sure would beat handing out candy.

    We put a bucket of candy out 3 years ago because the year prior a guy forced his way into my home, pushed my wife to the side (who just had a baby a couple of weeks prior) and ran through our foyer and into our kitchen and ran back out again. My father and I were downstairs and didn't see it happen. I told myself that we aren't handing out candy anymore. We laid the bucket out and all the candy was gone in minutes. No doubt looted by some greedy kids. My wife and I felt bad and didn't even put a bucket out this year.

    Is there a moral to this story? I don't know...maybe.

    FollowsClosely
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    ^ Firstly, that's horrible but at least it sounds like all were ok. On an unrelated note, I don't think I'll be able to make your next LEGO Game Night.

    I love Rocao's Halloween analogy and it's really interesting to see how people view it. While I can understand that some may feel the stakes are too low to get a proper read, I was always taught that you learn the most about your sense of right and wrong when no one is watching.
    cloaked7y2josh
  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,543

    Oops, think I forgot the ;-). I was just having a little laugh.

    Aah, the all-important smiley. My sincere apology @cheshirecat for missing the tone. :o)
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,454
    I love how @Yellowcastle slips my name in here and there without the @. I know I have been absent, it has taken me a while to catch up :)

  • BastaBasta Australia Member Posts: 1,259
    edited January 2014
    Don't want to really get into the debate as most things have already been said, but I just wanted to say that I don't like the Halloween analogy as one (#41999) is been sold, and sold at a price where money would be made.

    The other (Candy) is been given away. So to me these are a bad examples to make any kind of comparison with.

    (No one needs to give me a scenario were the candy cost say 1 cent. As the reasons for the two examples are completely different. #41999 purpose is to make money where as the candy is not).
    LegoFanTexas
  • pvancil27pvancil27 Member Posts: 588
    Most comparisons made by both sides are mostly pretty bad honestly. Things like the speed limit argument have more outside issues like safety then the buying more then you should of a luxury product which really does come down to an individuals perspective on what is right/wrong or justifiable or unjustifiable.
    LegoFanTexas
  • VaderXVaderX Member Posts: 220
    This thread consistently makes me smile...
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,454
    It doesn't make me smile as much as it makes me roll my eyes.
    legomattTXLegoguypharmjod
  • pvancil27pvancil27 Member Posts: 588
    The only thing that really bothers me in these threads is the "Oh no not this again it should die wah wha wha" crowd. There are plenty of threads on this forum I dont care one bit about but I wouldnt go in them crying about it. It tends to put a stop to any decent debates simply cause a small select few cant seem to just ignore a thread they dont like.

    This thread and its prequals have actually managed to make me see other view points and even change my line of thinking. There has been some solid humor pop out of them too.
    nkx1
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    Basta said:

    #41999 purpose is to make money where as the candy is not).

    On face value, this made me cringe. But assuming we're just talking about the difference between selling and giving away, I don't think the difference is that big. LEGO is not making any money off #41999, at least not directly. By my math, the profits from this set will be just enough to lock in Emmet for the LEGO Movie sequel.

    #41999 was a marketing event.... customer appreciation set...a housewarming present...a sorry about the valentine keychain.

    In my book, that's pretty darn close to the candy bowl, a neighborly if not lazy gesture for the community.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    edited January 2014
    The candy bowl analogy was about breaking limits not about reselling, as such to me it stands up to scrutiny well. You could just as easily argue that as there is financial gain in breaking limits on 41999s and only weight gains in the candy, taking all the 41999s is worse.

    As @yellowcake says there was surely little or no profit for Lego in 41999. More parts, rarer parts, much nicer box, small run and all for less than the standard crawler. This was a nice thing from Lego that some decided to take advantage of, which as has been said isn't illegal. However, just like the family that leaves a bowl of candy only for one person to take it all so doesn't bother next year, I suspect Lego won't repeat a 41999 either.

    That candy bowl analogy also works like this, some would point out that the end result for the family is the same either way, the candy is gone. Yet we know that they did care because they asked for people to limit themselves. Remind you of anyone?
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    pvancil27 said:

    Most comparisons made by both sides are mostly pretty bad honestly. Things like the speed limit argument have more outside issues like safety then the buying more then you should of a luxury product which really does come down to an individuals perspective on what is right/wrong or justifiable or unjustifiable.

    It all depends on how far up you want to approach the question. From my vantage, it's simply a look at how we all approach rules. I think the safety card is a copout, no offense intended, as A)We're not talking about drag racing speeds and 2)Most speed limits are overly conservative. How we, as a society, approach rules when there are no real personal consequences is, IMO, on point.

    No one is going to sue or arrest or flog the Billies for evading the stores' attempts at limiting his purchase of sets...or for grabbing too much free candy....or for going a little faster than the speed limit...or for bringing 15 items into the "10 Items Or Less" checkout lane.

    But the Billies are indeed breaking the "rules" and an argument can be made that each behavior is, at the very least, inconsiderate of others.
  • BastaBasta Australia Member Posts: 1,259
    edited January 2014
    ^^Not at all, TLG's exsistance is to make money. Even if Ole Kirk Kristiansens family have a love for what they do they are in business to make money, I'm sure you understand that?

    Even if its a "Marketing Event", why do companies use marketing? To grow and make more money. I'm just not sure why you would think it is cringe worthy?
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    The cringe reference was about how your sentence read. It sounded like you were saying the sole purpose of #41999 was to make you money.
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    edited January 2014
    I wonder....would you say LEGO made more, less or the same amount of money in the long run with resellers skirting buying limits as opposed to no one at all getting more than two? I would argue that the set would ultimately be more profitable to them if more, different people got them and at RRP. As @cheesycoat mentions, they do seem to care about this with their recent business practice changes and, per your argument, it must then be about money because that's what they care about.

    This all, though, is really irrelevant to the question at hand about rules and consideration of others.
  • BastaBasta Australia Member Posts: 1,259
    edited January 2014

    The cringe reference was about how your sentence read. It sounded like you were saying the sole purpose of #41999 was to make you money.

    Ahhh ok, sorry that wasn't what I meant at all, I was talking for TLG.

    Anyway, I don't disagree with the rest of what you said about what TLG would prefer as far as more "normal" consumers getting there hands on the #41999 compared to resellers.

    I just didn't like the analogy :)

  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    edited January 2014
    @Basta: Regarding your criticism that the analogy is poor because the candy is being given away whereas 41999 is sold by TLG for profit:

    In both instances, (1) there is a distributor and they've mandated that their product be distributed a certain way, and (2) the consumer knows of this mandate.

    Why is the distributor's angle important?
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525
    edited January 2014
    Basta said:

    Anyway, I don't disagree with the rest of what you said about what TLG would prefer as far as more "normal" consumers getting there hands on the #41999 compared to resellers.

    I'm not so sure. If lego wanted more "normal" people to get their hands on one, there is an easy solution - make more of them. They could have made 20,000 exclusive ones, and then a non-exclusive version, they could have made the set non-exclusive from the start, they could have made it exclusive but 50,000 /100,000 production run.

    Advertising doesn't always mean getting products into people's hands. Often it is getting them into people's minds. Large price increases and large selling prices gets people talking about lego. It gets non-lego fans investing in other lego sets. It may even get some people buying lego for their own use. And isn't that what lego want?

    PS. My stance - I am against breaking limits but not against reselling.
  • BastaBasta Australia Member Posts: 1,259
    edited January 2014
    rocao said:

    @Basta: Regarding your criticism that the analogy is poor because the candy is being given away whereas 41999 is sold by TLG for profit:

    In both instances, (1) there is a distributor and they've mandated that their product be distributed a certain way, and (2) the consumer knows of this mandate.

    Why is the distributor's angle important?

    So much for me staying out of this.

    My argument isn't about what the "Distributors" want, that's not why I don't like the analogy.

    One is selling an item at a set price for profit, the other is giving away candy out of the goodness of their hart, with no expectation of profit or anything for that matter (well maybe so they don't get tricked).

    @CCC once again I don't nesacerally disagree with what your saying, but no mater how many they made I'm sure TLG still would have prefered what #41999 they did sell went direct to the end consumer and not resellers.
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Northern VirginiaAdministrator, Moderator Posts: 5,234
    CCC said:


    I'm not so sure. If lego wanted more "normal" people to get their hands on one, there is an easy solution - make more of them. They could have made 20,000 exclusive ones, and then a non-exclusive version, they could have made the set non-exclusive from the start, they could have made it exclusive but 50,000 /100,000 production run.

    Advertising doesn't always mean getting products into people's hands. Often it is getting them into people's minds. Large price increases and large selling prices gets people talking about lego. It gets non-lego fans investing in other lego sets. It may even get some people buying lego for their own use.

    I think you missed the point. I don't think LEGO made a dime on these and that the entire release was a marketing Easter egg for the fans. But when challenged that LEGO was in the business of making money, I ran with that line of thinking and argued that LEGO would make more money in the long run getting the units into more, different hands (or minds) at RRP. The chase set is more successful at building the brand and the collecting hunger, the wider it reaches, IMO.

    More profit, though, does not mean lots of profit, and this kind of "water supply treatment" would be near impossible to gauge. They determined that 20,000 parts per X million liters of interested fans at no more than 2 drops per second was the right saturation to achieve their goal.

    We can argue their science all we want so long as we agree that some "fans" skirted the rules. And I'm just curious how many here think that behavior can be considered discourteous to other LEGO fans. And "if" most do, then why would we encourage it to be advertised here, let alone done in the first place?

    Just curious, not trying to call anyone out or exacerbate any schism. This, remember, is Yellowcastle 2.0.

    Normally, these rationalizations would be cooked as fried chicken, but you happenned to catch me in a transitional period so I don't wanna impugn, I wanna help. ;o)
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,454
    What we need is a flowchart. I don't mind going back to the same old arguments because new people jump in with their views.

    Is circumventing purchase limits always frowned upon? Does one go about it as "As long as I get mine, you can do what you want" attitude?

    Is it ok to clear shelves if it is for a charity? When is it accepted or is it always "wrong" no matter what the reason?
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525

    I think you missed the point. I don't think LEGO made a dime on these and that the entire release was a marketing Easter egg for the fans. But when challenged that LEGO was in the business of making money, I ran with that line of thinking and argued that LEGO would make more money in the long run getting the units into more, different hands (or minds) at RRP. The chase set is more successful at building the brand and the collecting hunger, the wider it reaches, IMO.

    Who are the fans here?

    If this was for the fans, then maybe lego should have restricted sales, or at least first dibs on the sales, to those that voted in the competition. After all, they say (http://www.lego.com/en-gb/technic/technicfan/blog/2013-2hy/co-creation-box) "This is YOUR model. The whole package is our tribute to all of you, our amazing builders, fans, and everyone who participated and voted in the competition." Yet they had the competition, got the fan voted winner and then just put it in the normal retail chain. It took me one minute to come up with that idea, giving something back to the fans that voted, the fans that this model is for. A simple tick-box to harvest the email addresses of voters to give them further information about the model and purchase opportunity when the model was developed would have done it. Yet a huge corporation came up with a different solution that obviously failed and was always going to fail to reward the fans.
  • pvancil27pvancil27 Member Posts: 588

    And I'm just curious how many here think that behavior can be considered discourteous to other LEGO fans. And "if" most do, then why would we encourage it to be advertised here, let alone done in the first place?

    Thats the thing that caught me most off guard here and made me come across a lot more bitter and aggressive the first time this went around, In my 15ish years being on internet forums for hobbies I have been involved in, this is the only site/hobby that I have ever encountered that was so open and accepting of the reseller market in terms of buying with the sole intent to make money. Add in that some of the people who post most are that subsection and it really gave this board a very strange vibe to me, and I'd guess many others who also came from other hobbies. As time passed I learned to read things different ways and take things at their face value. I still think the "acceptance" of the reseller mentality here has some negative consequences that dont get aired out too much but I learned that was an argument that either no one wanted to hear or cared about either way.
    Pitfall69 said:

    Is circumventing purchase limits always frowned upon? Does one go about it as "As long as I get mine, you can do what you want" attitude?

    Is it ok to clear shelves if it is for a charity? When is it accepted or is it always "wrong" no matter what the reason?

    To me, it in many ways is more a question of why then what. LFT only bought two extra crawlers. So four total (That he told us about at least). Using my hypothetical of a father buying four so each of his four kids could have one, Even though the act is the same, the reasoning behind the act makes me find one a lot more acceptable then the other. You can't separate the act from the reasoning behind the act. I also think a lot of the last batch of sourness that came from this thread had way more to due with the poor justifications and blaming others for their behaviors then the actual behaviors themselves.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525

    And I'm just curious how many here think that behavior can be considered discourteous to other LEGO fans. And "if" most do, then why would we encourage it to be advertised here, let alone done in the first place?

    My opinion - it is discourteous.

    I don't encourage it to be advertised. I think most members don't encourage it. It is down to the mods and eventually the site owner if a stricter approach to the removal of posts bragging about breaking rules or just stating that it is possible to break rules is going to take place. Often it is after the event anyway (such as in the #41999 case). If it is not discussed will it still be done? (Yes). If these people are banned from brickset, or given a warning to stop their behaviour or they will be banned will they change their ways? (No).

    As to the wider encouraging it to be done in the first place, there is little any of us can do to stop it. The main one is not buying the set from anyone selling it, or maybe an even stricter not buying anything from anyone selling or has sold it. That is, shun the resellers that have bought a "fan" set for resale. Would that hurt them? (No).
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    Basta said:

    One is selling an item at a set price for profit, the other is giving away candy out of the goodness of their hart, with no expectation of profit or anything for that matter (well maybe so they don't get tricked).

    But by and large, we're not forming our opinion around the impact on the distributor. Instead, we're judging it on the negative impact on other consumers.

    In the case of LEGO sets, one side is saying it's unfair/discourteous/etc to others wanting sets to circumvent limits. The other side is saying that breaking limits is perfectly fine and consumers that miss out have only themselves and TLG to blame.

    Yet with my candy bowl analogy, it seems nearly everyone thinks taking more than one's allotment is discourteous and slimy. While the limit-breaker is being disrespectful of the homeowner's wishes (I argue that TLG is also being disregarded), the problem here is that no one else got candy -- the impact on other would-be consumers. The homeowner was going to run out of candy either way.

  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,525
    edited January 2014
    rocao said:

    Yet with my candy bowl analogy, it seems nearly everyone thinks taking more than one's allotment is discourteous and slimy. While the limit-breaker is being disrespectful of the homeowner's wishes (I argue that TLG is also being disregarded), the problem here is that no one else got candy -- the impact on other would-be consumers. The homeowner was going to run out of candy either way.

    At least they get to chuck their eggs or whatever tricks they have planned.

    Whereas in lego world we have to write furious emails in green text to show how infuriated we are to complain about the lack of even distribution. And then wait two weeks for a reply from customer service. :-)
  • dougtsdougts Oregon, USAMember Posts: 4,110
    edited January 2014
    rocao said:

    The other side is saying that breaking limits is perfectly fine and consumers that miss out have only themselves and TLG to blame.

    This is an oversimplified and highly inaccurate summation of what most on the "other side" is saying.

  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,404
    ^ @dougts is correct, that is a gross oversimplification of the position and situation.

    Let me just say this...

    There is legal and illegal, then there is "right" and "wrong".

    Not all that is legal is "right" and not all that is illegal is "wrong".

    An extreme example: Slavery used to be legal, but that didn't make it "right", now did it? At least, from our current point of view anyway; I'm sure many people 200 years ago would disagree with it being "wrong".

    So what is "right" and what is "wrong" largely depends on your own point of view, the time and place you were born and grew up in, and your own position and choices in life.

    How about this question: "Are TLG's purchase limits "right" or "wrong"? Should they have the ability to set limits?

    That might sound like a crazy question, you might say, "of course they do, it is their business to run any way they want".

    No, it isn't, not really. After all, there are rules about pay for employees, rules about pollution of the environment. There could easily be rules about sales limits.

    An example of such a rule: In a retail store, if the store posts a price on the shelf for a product, they must honor that price. They can't let you fill up your cart, go to checkout, then say, "oh, sorry, that item is actually twice the price, pay up". That is illegal, for very good reasons. If the price tag says $19.99 then they have to sell it to you for that price. They can't say, "oh sorry, it was supposed to be $39.99".

    Should there be such a law for purchase limits? Maybe, or maybe not, but consider that everyone seems to take them for granted, as if anything TLG says goes.

    What if it doesn't?
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    edited January 2014
    I used the candy bowl analogy because of its simplicity, but since it seems I can't resist analogy, I'll offer this more complex analogy. I included the for-profit motivation and a more thorough summation of the defenses of limit circumvention, but if you think it's still being grossly oversimplified or misrepresented, you're welcome to point it out, or better yet, modify the scenario.

    ------
    In a neighborhood, everyone looks forward to the annual Girl Scout cookie sales. The local chapter announced that they would start selling them in front of the neighborhood grocery store Saturday at noon.

    The Girl Scout corporation knows their product in in high demand, particularly the Thin Mints. As much as they would like to produce and sell to every last person that had even a whim of a craving, the reality is they can't. The corporation advises the local chapter that there should be a limit of two Thin Mint boxes per household to ensure availability to more people.

    Saturday arrives, and true to form, people show up in droves and queue up at the folding table. Just before noon one of the parents scrawls out "Limit 2 Thin Mint boxes per household". The first few customers happily buy their allotment. Another person is disappointed he can only buy two boxes, but he understands and abides.

    The next guy up buys two and then informs the Girl Scout helping him that'd he like to buy four more, two for each of his neighbors, techincally different households. The Girl Scout doesn't have an issue, she's happy that her troop is making money. The Scout Leader mom sees what happens and has misgivings but doesn't want a confrontation. She does inform the girls that next time the neighbors have to be present to claim theirs.

    The next woman in line, emboldened by seeing the previous guy walk off with three, devises her own plan. She buys two boxes from the first girl scout, casually steps down the busy table and buys two from another unsuspecting Girl Scout. She gets two more from a third.

    The next ten people buy two boxes each, and the Girl Scouts are running low on Thin Mints but at least they didn't have any more questionable limit issues that would infuriate their remaining customers.

    Then something weird happens. Nine of those people give all their boxes to one guy, get in their cars, and go home.

    "What was that about?" Someone in line asks.
    "Oh, those were my Mom, Dad, brother, sister-in-law, cousins, nieces and nephews. Gotta respect those limits!" he says with a wry smile.
    "You must really love your thin mints. I'm only here for the Samoas"
    "Well if you buy two boxes of Thin Mints, I'll buy them off you for double the price."
    "Deal!"

    A couple people behind him hear this exchange and procure the same deal. Lucky for them they secure the last of the thin mints. Unlucky, of course, for the other 50 people in line: they REALLY wanted Thin Mints, but alas some can make do with other cookies, and no one is going to die of starvation.

    "Don't be so downtrodden," the Thin Mint Mogul announces to the line. He goes to his car and quickly retrieves his own folding table and sets it up next to the Girl Scouts. "Thin Mints for sale. Sold out everywhere! Triple retail unfortunately, but this may be your last chance to buy Thin Mints. I heard this may have been the last year they make them."

    People start leaving the Girl Scout line to buy Thin Mints. Paying triple mark up, some aren't able to go back into the Girl Scout line to buy some of the other cookies because they've now blown their cookie budget. Most of them, of course, are relieved to have gotten Thin Mints at all.

    The rest of the crowd that missed out are disappointed. Some are downright upset. "How can you live with yourself?" one person fumes.

    Thin Mint Mogul responds, "Don't blame me, it's not my fault. The Girl Scout corporation surely should have made more Thin Mints. And those Girl Scouts over there? Silly them, they made it so easy for me to buy them out."

    "That's so rude! What gives you the right?" someone shoots back angrily.

    "I was in line like everyone else. Don't blame me because I managed to be in front of you. Besides, you're not seeing the bigger picture. These Girl Scouts aren't equipped to do anything more than sell to you guys standing in line. I'm global. I'm going to ensure these last boxes of Thin Mints will be accessible to the far reaches of the world. If you ask me, that's more fair than this line system."

    "But you just defended the fairness of the line system!"

    "Look, I empathize with you, I really do. Believe me when I say I'd like to be able to crack open a box of Thin Mints and enjoy them myself. But I can't at these prices. At these prices, I can take my family for a weeklong trip to Disneyworld."
    LostInTranslationDadTXLegoguyMatthewYellowcastlepvancil27y2joshsidersddgivmellis
  • weevinweevin Member Posts: 34
    ^ The difference here is that my wife couldn't eat all my LEGO.
    FollowsClosely
  • SirKevbagsSirKevbags Fairy Land Member Posts: 4,027
    I've never eaten one but I want a thin mint.
    LostInTranslation
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,157
    ^ How much do you want one? I'll part out the box and let you buy one for £2! ;)

    Actually see this at the rip-off Christmas markets. Some stall hollder at my local one had the full range of cakes, biscuits and cookies bought from the Gateshead Costco. He's selling the cookies and shortbread choc chunk biscuits for £1.50 a piece "freshly made cakes and biscuits" proclaims the sign. Freshly made by Costco! Who in their right mind would buy one of his cookies for £1.50 when Greggs is around the corner for 1/3 of the price and looking just as good? People do daft things when they're high on christmas spirit.
  • cloaked7cloaked7 Member Posts: 1,448
    edited January 2014
    I think limits on a high demand, limited item is right. Is appropriate. Is fair. Forget about Halloween candy, what if it were food and water after a hurricane? I don't have an issue with limits. It's TLG's product and if there is a pretty level playing field for obtaining the item (which I think there was) I think limits are very good.

    Years ago I stood outside of Best Buy to get a PS2 for my son for Christmas. I was very glad that they limited it to 1 per person, because that allowed me to get one. My other son worked at BB, but he couldn't get one. I got in line 1 hour before the store opened to get a chance at getting one and I did. Sure, a husband and wife could have gotten in line and bought 2, one each. One for their child and one for resale, but that's not on BB. BB did what they could to be fair about it. A company can only do so much to try and insure fairness. So, I think what BB was fair, was right, was moral, was good. I don't see any way what they, or LEGO, did was wrong, bad, amoral. Was it perfect? No. But, they tried. Could it have been implemented better? Sure. But, TLG is only going to spend so much time and effort in trying to establish fairness.
  • doriansdaddoriansdad CTCMember Posts: 1,337
    You guys are missing out:

    http://www.worldmarket.com/product/arnotts-chocolate-mint-slice-biscuits.do

    Thin mints are good but lets keep it real up in here!
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,157
    Eet's just a waffer thin mint: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXH_12QWWg8
    Cheeka
  • SirKevbagsSirKevbags Fairy Land Member Posts: 4,027
    Raided the cupboard. This will have to do. First of the year.
    scrumperBanditricho
  • scrumperscrumper UKMember Posts: 317

    ^ An example of such a rule: In a retail store, if the store posts a price on the shelf for a product, they must honor that price. They can't let you fill up your cart, go to checkout, then say, "oh, sorry, that item is actually twice the price, pay up". That is illegal, for very good reasons. If the price tag says $19.99 then they have to sell it to you for that price. They can't say, "oh sorry, it was supposed to be $39.99

    I don't know if the US is the same but in the UK no retail store legally has to sell anything to anyone at any price. If they were intentionally misleading people it would be illegal and if they sold it to someone at the lower price they couldn't then demand the extra money but they are not obliged to sell at a price if it is an error.
This discussion has been closed.

Shopping at LEGO.com or Amazon?

Please use our links: LEGO.com Amazon

Recent discussions Categories Privacy Policy Brickset.com

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. Sign in or register to get started.

Brickset.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, the Amazon.com.ca, Inc. Associates Program and the Amazon EU Associates Programme, which are affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.

As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.