gerry wrote on 2022-05-23, 08:14:
when someone does buy it for $300 then it kind of proves the 'value' though, is it disruption? isn't all demand and supply 'di […]
TheMobRules wrote on 2022-05-19, 02:34:
I think zyzzle is talking specifically about scalpers, who usually have enough money to buy all the stock they can find of a certain product until it's not available anywhere else and then they resell it at overinflated prices. So I definitely sympathize with him on that, since these scumbags are not there trying to "put food on the table", they don't add any value and do nothing but disrupt the market. And I bet those are the ones that have all their listings sponsored so eBay bombards you with them and they can also afford to hold on to an item for extended periods of time, relisting it indefinitely at a ridiculous price until some desperate dumbass pays $300 for their "Retro Vintage Generic IDE Controller".
when someone does buy it for $300 then it kind of proves the 'value' though, is it disruption? isn't all demand and supply 'disruption' really? we just don't like it when someone has more money than we have (or are just quicker, more aware of how to get at the stuff) to buy up rare items and then sells them (slowly) to people who have more money to buy them than we have
An example is sports or concert tickets, the best known scalper fields. It sure feels wrong, but if all the $40 tickets would actually have sold for between $80 and $800 then it means the original seller prices them imperfectly - i'm glad they do for the lucky ones who manage to click fast enough to get one for their own use - but if the original seller prices them all for double there wouldn't be as much scalping and yet there would, in the end, be as many concert goers
it all feels a bit unpleasant, but it is the same kind of supply/demand dynamic that results in the prices of bread, box of nails, plywood and computer parts
online just means a seller can wait on a global market to compete for their rare parts
Still doesn't change the fact they don't add any actual value and do nothing but disrupt the market.
I can't think of a single way in which this is actually a positive influence.
And for some it may feel like it's just a bit unpleasant but for some it may be like as if you're going to the supermarket and put your stuff on the conveyerbelt thingy but instead of the cashiere taking the items from you, someone else picks them up, then hands them to the cashiere and pays for it, then asks you to pay 5-fold what the value is of the items in the supermarket.
Since these people often scoop up large amounts of items, this alone artificially creates a scarcity that might not have even existed if this person wasn't trying to squeeze in as some kind of parasitic middleman between a producer and consumer. I mean it's not a transporter, it's not a producer buying items and using these for an own product. They scoop up and try to manipulate a market. Any market! They might not even care what they are selling as long as they can parasitize off of it somehow.
It's also not about supply and demand, it's about manipulating both supply and demand to squeeze out producers and consumers by jamming themselves between the door. It's as fruitful as a gang of local mobsters asking the locals for 'protection payment'.
I think it's hard to argue that these people, these artificial middlemen, serve no real purpose. Not an actual one at least. It's more or less just a form of parasitism and I think this critisism is a fair and correct point.
Of course, it's not practical to actually combat this, though in some cases this is tried like with the Dutch housing market atm where these people are mass-purchasing housing right after it's been completed so they can rent it at inflated prices. Do they produce anything? No. Is it helping alleviate something? No. Can one live without a house? According to our current leadership we clearly can. Just don't move out of your parents house or just buy a house at (of course) inflated price.
The last few years there has been more voices wanting to make living in the house you buy obligatory. This would of course go against the freedom of the individual but atm it's one of the few ways these parasites can be fought against with some level of succes.
Your example, there's also a push against these parasites by for instance not selling more than 1 or 2 tickets per person so these people can't scoop up hundreds or thousands of tickets all at once. It won't outright delete this but at least it keeps it somewhat managable. Just like horses rolling in the dirt try combating their parasites. It will never cure it, but at least it's something.
Scalping in a market that's less essential to a persons need doesn't make it right. If there's too much parasitism it could even outright kill its market. The parasites wouldn't care much, for them it would probably be just the next inflated pyramid balloon construction tumbling down and they will move on or perhaps in some cases go bankrupth, leaving the once healthy and thriving market in shambles and in smoke (and probably half or completely dead).
Their function isn't to put bread on the table, it's about greed. Pure greed.
Sure, hobbies aren't as essential to our wellbeing as housing and food are (but wellbeing by itself is essential), and I don't see these people leaving the retro computing market like ever? Or at least for the forseeable future. It's just the way it is atm and tbh I wouldn't really know what could be done about this in our particular niche market.