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[unpopular opinion]what about scalpers?

I see a lot of people complayining about "scalpers" buying new vidoe cards and reselling them to a higher price. Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.
Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

I hear "scalpers" being accused of profiteering. But if I open Wikipedia, the definition of profiteering involves some manipulation of the market or an emergency which is clearly not the case.

The whole situation of people running to buy cards and then resell it for a large profit is actually artificially created by producers like Nvidia and AMD choosing to sell the products below what would be a market price before widespread availability. If say Nvidia would wait to have a full stock to release a product or start selling it at a higher price and scale it down while availability increases, the whole thing would be more transparent and customer friendly. Instead they are launching a product on the market at an MSRP far below it's market price, for marketing reasons and ultimately for their own gain.

The fact that people will buy stokcs of new cards, pay them, then try to resell them at a higher price - also incurring into a risk if they cannot do that before the market price drops - doesn't bother me and should not bother you. This is just how the market works.

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy, are trying to "stop the scalpers". Becase if they punish resellers trying to sell at a market price, they are practicing anti-competitive behaviour which, in the long run, hurts the market and then the consumer.

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

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The thing is, I'm pretty sure this hasn't happened before.

I could be wrong, but I don't think this is usual.

Probably why everyone's so annoyed.

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You are 100% correct. 

 

Most of the griping is from kids who are getting their first lesson in how the economy works. Everyone can understand the opposite scenario where something is overpriced and doesn't sell, so the seller has to lower the price. But if something is under priced, things are reversed: the price will rise to match demand. Either the original seller gets a clue and raises the price, or someone buys it and resells it at a higher price. 

 

It's pretty simple, and nothing wrong with it. 

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19 minutes ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

Ah, nice try! You ain't fooling anybody here!

 

/jk

 

 

Honestly, I know scalpers are not doing anything "wrong", not legally at least.

 

It might just be morally wrong though, to be using softwares/bots that lets them snag items in a split second, faster than any humans, and prevent those who would've actually used said item from purchasing it at the retail price, though.

Even more so when you see them brag about it.

 

It's just annoying. That's all they are. Annoying. I just want a new graphic card to finally be able to use my VR headset and not have to pay $2000 for an entry level card. Is that asking too much?

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It just sucks people have to pay more money for an item, only because someone else bought it before them.

People don't have a problem with others making a profit (well, some people do, but reasonable people don't most of the time), but usually the one making a profit is also the one creating something of value. Scalpers add nothing of value to the product, the same way a store or manufacturer does.

 

Sure, supply and demand; but when the supply is only being depleted for the sole purpose of creating less supply for a higher price? That stings.

7 minutes ago, ragnarok0273 said:

The thing is, I'm pretty sure this hasn't happened before.

Depends on what you specifically mean.

Videocards not being available and being sold at absurd prices by stores and others on the second hand market? That happened with the AMD 500-series and Nvidia 10-series, because mining.

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Sorry if my post seemed rude, that is never my intention.

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5 minutes ago, TetraSky said:

It might just be morally wrong though, to be using softwares/bots that lets them snag items in a split seconds, faster than any humans

Live show tickets used to suffer from this a lot but it's now illegal in the UK to use bots to scalp tickets. 

 

If it keeps on going with new releases of hardware, I wouldn't be surprised to see the law expanded here to cover it in a similar way. 

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2 minutes ago, minibois said:

It just sucks people have to pay more money for an item, only because someone else bought it before them.

People don't have a problem with others making a profit (well, some people do, but reasonable people don't most of the time), but usually the one making a profit is also the one creating something of value. Scalpers add nothing of value to the product, the same way a store or manufacturer does.

 

Sure, supply and demand; but when the supply is only being depleted for the sole purpose of creating less supply for a higher price? That stings.

Depends on what you specifically mean.

Videocards not being available and being sold at absurd prices by stores and others on the second hand market? That happened with the AMD 500-series and Nvidia 10-series, because mining.

Scalpers don't sell it for more because they added value; they sell it for the value it already has to the customer. People obviously value these things at hgih prices because they are actually buying them. When that stops, the price will fall. 

 

The supply is the same; the exact same number of GPUs still exist. The prices just now accurately reflect the value that the market has determined they have. 

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18 minutes ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

manipulation of the market

Pretty sure buying out the supply of market goods to resell them is some kind of manipulation of the market, if nothing else price gouging, which your wikipedia article points out as a type of profiteering is certainly in action

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5 minutes ago, charlie_root said:

Scalpers don't sell it for more because they added value; they sell it for the value it already has to the customer. People obviously value these things at hgih prices because they are actually buying them. When that stops, the price will fall.

Well yeah, the added value of videocards sold by scalpers is "hey, at least we have cards, because we bought them before you did!"

That isn't the conventional added value of warranty, support, etc.

7 minutes ago, charlie_root said:

The supply is the same; the exact same number of GPUs still exist. The prices just now accurately reflect the value that the market has determined they have. 

Unless the videocards are bought from a certain country and sold in another country where the resale value is higher, which is definitely something done between countries with free travel of goods.

Yes, the global supply will be the same with or without scalpers, but the local supply might definitely change.

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Sorry if my post seemed rude, that is never my intention.

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Is there anything technically wrong with buying a product and reselling it for a profit? No.

 

Does buying tons of inventory of anything to cause shortages make you a piece of shit? Yes.

 

Not a "kid" or aching to buy a 3000 series card. I'm just being a realist.

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2 hours ago, charlie_root said:

You are 100% correct. 

 

Most of the griping is from kids who are getting their first lesson in how the economy works. Everyone can understand the opposite scenario where something is overpriced and doesn't sell, so the seller has to lower the price. But if something is under priced, things are reversed: the price will rise to match demand. Either the original seller gets a clue and raises the price, or someone buys it and resells it at a higher price. 

 

It's pretty simple, and nothing wrong with it. 

Ok but if it's so simple, how so many people including media outlets will denunce this behaviour. I think that Linus of all people gets the supply and demand law. And yet here he is attacking "scalpers".

 

2 hours ago, minibois said:

It just sucks people have to pay more money for an item, only because someone else bought it before them.

People don't have a problem with others making a profit (well, some people do, but reasonable people don't most of the time), but usually the one making a profit is also the one creating something of value. Scalpers add nothing of value to the product, the same way a store or manufacturer does.

 

Sure, supply and demand; but when the supply is only being depleted for the sole purpose of creating less supply for a higher price? That stings.

Depends on what you specifically mean.

Videocards not being available and being sold at absurd prices by stores and others on the second hand market? That happened with the AMD 500-series and Nvidia 10-series, because mining.

I disagree with the premise that every price increase corresponds or should with a creating value in a measurable way (you can argue that the price increase is creating value in itself, but it's kind of circular argument).

A lot of legitimate business will resell stuff at an higher price without adding much if at all. Think about a supermarket reselling bread.

Of course, market economy being what it is, it tends to be the case that for someone to gain a profit should add some value. Because otherwise people will just buy elsewhere. It's not smart to buy from scalpers, that for sure. But it doesn't mean that it's a immoral activity either.

30 minutes ago, Mooshi said:

Is there anything technically wrong with buying a product and reselling it for a profit? No.

 

Does buying tons of inventory of anything to cause shortages make you a piece of shit? Yes.

 

Not a "kid" or aching to buy a 3000 series card. I'm just being a realist.

I don't think that any single "scalper" or even all of them are causing the shortage. The shortage is already there. Scalpers are just making profit out of it.

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Scalping is, ultimately, something where the moral compass judges a point more than the legal compass. 

I'll refrain from commenting on anything morally (as my opinion really doesn't matter here), but ultimately, legally, it's not illegal.

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12 minutes ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I disagree with the premise that every price increase corresponds or should with a creating value in a measurable way (you can argue that the price increase is creating value in itself, but it's kind of circular argument).

A lot of legitimate business will resell stuff at an higher price without adding much if at all. Think about a supermarket reselling bread.

A supermarket does bring extra value, which (in my opinion) constitutes the added margin:

- A supermarket has customer service, in case the bread is not to your liking

- it also brings all the ingredients needed for a sandwich to one convenient location, so you don't have to go to the cow farm for cheese, veggie farm to get cabbage, etc. for your sandwich.

- generally supermarkets are in a convenient location to get the product and its accompanying products

 

If a price increase doesn't bring extra 'value', your business shouldn't have to exist.

Of course the benefit/value of buying from a scalper is actually being able to buy the product, which is a value the scalpers created just by existing.

A true "make a problem, sell the solution" type of scenario. If the scalpers didn't exist, there would be a larger supply of product for a reasonable price.

 

Ultimately I don't feel like the level of scalping we're seeing nowadays could or even necessarily should be made illegal, but I still personally dislike it.

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Sorry if my post seemed rude, that is never my intention.

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29 minutes ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I don't think that any single "scalper" or even all of them are causing the shortage. The shortage is already there.

That's irrelevant. Deliberately worsening a shortage you know exists is just as bad as creating a new shortage.

 

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3 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.

As a hypothetical scalper, you did no work and added nothing of value to the product while stopping people from being able to afford something. It's not illegal but it's a shitty thing to do. And you're right, in a way the current economic model encourages that - that doesn't make it good. Until we can address the root of the problem we'll stick with shaming scalpers in the hope that at least some of them give up.

3 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy

That ALSO bothers us. But scalpers make the problem worse by taking advantage of an already bad situation. Also, what? Do you suddenly have a problem with someone exploiting the broken market?

3 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

Surely then you also have no problem with people trolling scalpers and preventing them from selling their stock until they drop the prices as well as dragging them online for their behavior... it's both legal and the logical thing to do for an end user in the current market.

3 hours ago, ragnarok0273 said:

The thing is, I'm pretty sure this hasn't happened before.

I could be wrong, but I don't think this is usual.

Probably why everyone's so annoyed.

This happens literally every time a new generation of anything launches. Low supplies and mining crazes make the problem worse but it's always there in some capacity.

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3 hours ago, charlie_root said:

The supply is the same; the exact same number of GPUs still exist. The prices just now accurately reflect the value that the market has determined they have.

the market isn't determining the value, people selling on ebay, craigslist, gumtree etc are not the market. the "market" has already decided how much they are worth in the MSRP but when these cards are scalped the price is inflated to how much *some* people are willing to spend on them.

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50 minutes ago, Sauron said:

That ALSO bothers us. But scalpers make the problem worse by taking advantage of an already bad situation. Also, what? Do you suddenly have a problem with someone exploiting the broken market?

I disagree that the market is broken. This is actually the best scenario. The two only viable alternatives are:

- Nvidia waiting to have enough supply to meet initial demand to launch a product. Which will not make anything better: if you can wait you can wait.
- Nvidia selling initial stocks at a higher price and lowering the price as supply increases. This will only move the profit margin from "scalpers" - which are small businesses - to nvidia itself. How is it better?

Every other scenario involves Nvidia magically create infinite chips from thin air.

22 minutes ago, Letgomyleghoe said:

the market isn't determining the value, people selling on ebay, craigslist, gumtree etc are not the market. the "market" has already decided how much they are worth in the MSRP but when these cards are scalped the price is inflated to how much *some* people are willing to spend on them.

Ahahahah no. If you think that MSRP is an indication of market price, think again. MSRP is all over the place nowadays. Seriously, check MSRPs of common stuff other than CPUs and GPUs. I've suppliers selling me stuff at 1000$ with official MSRPs listed as 2000$ and I can find the same stuff at 1050$ on amazon.

Market value is exactly how much some people are willing to spend. You are not selling 3080s to every human being in existence. What matters is how much people want to pay for the initial stock. If there are 100.000 3080s at launch and there are 100.000 buyers that would spend 1500$ for one, that's your market price.

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Perhaps this is an indication that there is room for improvement in the way that some markets operate.

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5 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I see a lot of people complayining about "scalpers" buying new vidoe cards and reselling them to a higher price. Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.
Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

I hear "scalpers" being accused of profiteering. But if I open Wikipedia, the definition of profiteering involves some manipulation of the market or an emergency which is clearly not the case.

The whole situation of people running to buy cards and then resell it for a large profit is actually artificially created by producers like Nvidia and AMD choosing to sell the products below what would be a market price before widespread availability. If say Nvidia would wait to have a full stock to release a product or start selling it at a higher price and scale it down while availability increases, the whole thing would be more transparent and customer friendly. Instead they are launching a product on the market at an MSRP far below it's market price, for marketing reasons and ultimately for their own gain.

The fact that people will buy stokcs of new cards, pay them, then try to resell them at a higher price - also incurring into a risk if they cannot do that before the market price drops - doesn't bother me and should not bother you. This is just how the market works.

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy, are trying to "stop the scalpers". Becase if they punish resellers trying to sell at a market price, they are practicing anti-competitive behaviour which, in the long run, hurts the market and then the consumer.

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

The problem with scalpers is that they serve no value to the economy they partake in. They are simply businesses which take advantage of consumers by acquiring items through less than legal means.

 

Another issue with scalpers is that they remove money from the markets which they operate. Someone spends an extra $700 to acquire the card, when that $700 could be spent supporting other businesses in the PC market. 

 

Sure, it's not inherently illegal to take advantage of supply & demand to make a profit for yourself. But I agree that people should be upset that their items can only acquired through organizations that provide absolutely no value to them. 

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Imo, I think everybody is so annoyed because the smugglers aren't even going to use these cards so it's going to stop people who are really going to use them because they won't feel like spending 2x the price on it. I don't think it's fair that they're using bots and that it's going to hurt the humans who want it because they don't have those bots.

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6 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

(...)

You're not wrong; however, you are also wasting your time. Some of the forum's users already know what you're saying, and the rest need something to channel their frustration against.

Companies know that some scapegoat will take their place if they generate frustration through unrealistic MSRPs given their supply, while they will be in the receiving end if, with the same supply, they announce market-clearing prices.

My point is: they do it because they know it works, and you could only successfully convey your message in a world where it doesn't.

 

 

6 hours ago, Cyracus said:

Pretty sure buying out the supply of market goods to resell them is some kind of manipulation of the market

Only if you put yourself in a monopolistic position by doing so. Scalpers, however, are tiny.

 

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8 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I see a lot of people complayining about "scalpers" buying new vidoe cards and reselling them to a higher price. Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.
Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

I hear "scalpers" being accused of profiteering. But if I open Wikipedia, the definition of profiteering involves some manipulation of the market or an emergency which is clearly not the case.

The whole situation of people running to buy cards and then resell it for a large profit is actually artificially created by producers like Nvidia and AMD choosing to sell the products below what would be a market price before widespread availability. If say Nvidia would wait to have a full stock to release a product or start selling it at a higher price and scale it down while availability increases, the whole thing would be more transparent and customer friendly. Instead they are launching a product on the market at an MSRP far below it's market price, for marketing reasons and ultimately for their own gain.

The fact that people will buy stokcs of new cards, pay them, then try to resell them at a higher price - also incurring into a risk if they cannot do that before the market price drops - doesn't bother me and should not bother you. This is just how the market works.

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy, are trying to "stop the scalpers". Becase if they punish resellers trying to sell at a market price, they are practicing anti-competitive behaviour which, in the long run, hurts the market and then the consumer.

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

 

 

8 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I see a lot of people complayining about "scalpers" buying new vidoe cards and reselling them to a higher price. Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.
Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

I hear "scalpers" being accused of profiteering. But if I open Wikipedia, the definition of profiteering involves some manipulation of the market or an emergency which is clearly not the case.

The whole situation of people running to buy cards and then resell it for a large profit is actually artificially created by producers like Nvidia and AMD choosing to sell the products below what would be a market price before widespread availability. If say Nvidia would wait to have a full stock to release a product or start selling it at a higher price and scale it down while availability increases, the whole thing would be more transparent and customer friendly. Instead they are launching a product on the market at an MSRP far below it's market price, for marketing reasons and ultimately for their own gain.

The fact that people will buy stokcs of new cards, pay them, then try to resell them at a higher price - also incurring into a risk if they cannot do that before the market price drops - doesn't bother me and should not bother you. This is just how the market works.

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy, are trying to "stop the scalpers". Becase if they punish resellers trying to sell at a market price, they are practicing anti-competitive behaviour which, in the long run, hurts the market and then the consumer.

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

Let me tel you the issue with “this is how the market works.” This is the exact argument I’ve heard of people defending the Pharma Bro. Pharma Bro was this [expletive] Martin Shkreli who bought the manufacturing license for the antiparasitic drug Daraprim and raised its price by a factor of 56 (from US$13.5 to $750 per pill). He also acquired a couple of other medical licenses and even tried to get the FDA to reject a breakthrough cancer treatment solely for his personal gain.

 

As for the free market, two other pharmaceuticals decided to make alternatives to this drug to break that guy’s monopoly. And they have. So at the end that prick just forced an entire economy to waste resources on solving a problem that was already solved decades ago.

 

One might say healthcare is not the same as electronics but the interpretation of a market economy that you’ve presented doesn’t make that distinction; neither do scalpers like Martin Shkreli. And that’s why people hate them. As a matter fact scalpers hoarded toilet paper, masks, sanitizers right when the pandemic started. They created a panic which made things way worse.

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8 hours ago, Riccardo Cagnasso said:

I see a lot of people complayining about "scalpers" buying new vidoe cards and reselling them to a higher price. Yet I cannot see anything wrong with that.
Prices in a market driven economy are decided by the ratio of supply and demand. This means that if a 3080 is in small supply and there are people that will buy it at 1500$, the market price of that item is 1500$. If someone can buy it for lower and then resell it, that is how business works.

I hear "scalpers" being accused of profiteering. But if I open Wikipedia, the definition of profiteering involves some manipulation of the market or an emergency which is clearly not the case.

The whole situation of people running to buy cards and then resell it for a large profit is actually artificially created by producers like Nvidia and AMD choosing to sell the products below what would be a market price before widespread availability. If say Nvidia would wait to have a full stock to release a product or start selling it at a higher price and scale it down while availability increases, the whole thing would be more transparent and customer friendly. Instead they are launching a product on the market at an MSRP far below it's market price, for marketing reasons and ultimately for their own gain.

The fact that people will buy stokcs of new cards, pay them, then try to resell them at a higher price - also incurring into a risk if they cannot do that before the market price drops - doesn't bother me and should not bother you. This is just how the market works.

What should bother you is that the producers, while still having an unresonable price/availability policy, are trying to "stop the scalpers". Becase if they punish resellers trying to sell at a market price, they are practicing anti-competitive behaviour which, in the long run, hurts the market and then the consumer.

P.s. I'm not a scalper.

Let me tel you the issue with “this is how the market works.” This is the exact argument I’ve heard of people defending the Pharma Bro. Pharma Bro was this [expletive] Martin Shkreli who bought the manufacturing license for the antiparasitic drug Daraprim and raised its price by a factor of 56 (from US$13.5 to $750 per pill). He also acquired a couple of other medical licenses and even tried to get the FDA to reject a breakthrough cancer treatment solely for his personal gain.

 

As for the free market, two other pharmaceuticals decided to make alternatives to this drug to break that guy’s monopoly. And they have. So at the end that prick just forced an entire economy to waste resources on solving a problem that was already solved decades ago.

 

You might say healthcare is not the same as electronics but the interpretation of a market economy that you’ve presented doesn’t make that distinction; neither do scalpers like Martin Shkreli. And that’s why people hate them. As a matter fact scalpers hoarded toilet paper, masks, sanitizers right when the pandemic started. They created a panic which made things way worse.

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