the old rec.games.frp.marketplace days
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 12:04 pm 
 

VermilionFire wrote:  As others here have pointed out time and again, eBay does not enforce its own rules.  
I know I'm in the minority here, but I'd much rather go back to the old rec.games.frp.marketplace days.  There was more transparency in the bidding process and more community among the members.  Yes, it was more work to run the auctions, but I personally enjoyed it from a selling and bidding aspect.



Having only taken up collecting online not too many years ago, I'm curious to know more about what rec.games.frp.marketplace was like.  Do the veterans here have any lore they can share?  How did it work?  How was it better or worse than eBay?

  


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 1:26 pm 
 

Hi, here's the old FAQ:

http://www.arielarchives.com/brett/FAQ.html#2

It was a typical informal bidding list.  Fun, but I personally had too many security concerns from a similar field (selling Magic:  The Gathering stuff online) to use it.  It made for good reading and was fun to watch, nice tight-knit community where revelations would sometimes appear as items popped out of the woodwork.  Serendipitous research, as it were.  ;)

Honestly its primary use to me was in gauging levels of interest in game materials, so I'd know what to buy, trade and sell at the cons.  The lack of a centralized venue/clearing house made it pretty shady at times.  The honest people kept it clean, but there were a few explosions as there always seem to be.

eBay isn't much better, really, with the fees and lazy policing.  I still prefer face-to-face dealings with big collections.

The spirit of the list still exists, actually, for those who prefer that approach; it simply takes the form of private deals sometimes coordinated through this site's mail system.

  

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Post Posted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 7:52 pm 
 

stumbling tiger wrote:

Having only taken up collecting online not too many years ago, I'm curious to know more about what rec.games.frp.marketplace was like.  Do the veterans here have any lore they can share?  How did it work?  How was it better or worse than eBay?


I sold quite a bit on the marketplace from the early 90s to about 1999 when I started listing almost exclusively on Ebay.  Every week, I used to just post a list of items for sale with condition and price, obviously no pictures.  There was a lot more trust back then, but then again you had to be honest because you couldn't "crap in your backyard" so to speak, if you ripped someone off they would post about it in the marketplace and you would suffer because of it.  You had to maintain extensive records on prices because there was no "ebay" to compare prices against.  All payments were in checks or money orders (no paypal back then) so the buyer had to trust the seller quite a bit; it was a huge leap of faith on the buyer's part and even I got ripped off a few times when buying something.  All in all I liked it quite a bit, because there were no fees paid to Ebay, no fees paid to paypal.  As a buyer I would have to say ebay is quite a bit better..you are protected much better with ebay's feedback system, photos of the items, and paypal/paying by credit card.  Also, there was much speculation back in the day that tons of auctions on the marketplace were shilled, since there really existed no mechanism to find out if some mysterious guy that started bidding was just created by the seller. There were some sellers who were widely known that they shilled every single auction and item they put up for bid, so you just stayed away from them if you were in the know.
 As would said, it became a pretty close knit community, and it was almost like dealing with Acaeum peopoe buying and selling and trading amongst each other.  

Mike B.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 11:07 pm 
 

Thanks for the information!  Because of the dissatisfaction with eBay that crops up on these pages now and again, I'd like to know what  the alternatives could look like -- not that I've got one up my own sleeve.  :)  
Sounds like the smallness of the trading community was an advantage in certain ways (because you could be familiar with most everyone), but I bet the range of things for sale was also a lot smaller.

  


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Post Posted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 1:53 am 
 

I got back in to AD&D thanks to paul's Treasure Trove auctions in rgf.marketplace

It was awesome, and I miss those times.

  
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