Scalper company secured almost 3,500 PS5 consoles for resale, says it has "no regrets"

kiwigraeme

Posts: 315   +254
Not funny - but I remember a scammer worded his auction really careful - and sold the photo of or was it the box of some new shiny
 

m4a4

Posts: 2,336   +2,602
TechSpot Elite
I cant believe there are comments advocating for making scalping illegal and prosecuting scalpers.

Guys. GUYS. Its a VIDEO GAME CONSOLE. It's not life saving medicine, food, or water. There are already laws in place to prevent scalping of necessary goods and services.

If you want to play modern woke vidya so badly, just pay the scalpers and get it over with so you can spend $2000 on DLC and microtransactions for FPS battle game #57 remaster the third. Or just practice patience. There are literally thousands of great games on the PC, you going to tell me you've played every single one of them? Every good game for every console you currently own?

If you HAVE played every good game ever made, get off your arse and put those hours into something useful. Video games are entertainment, there is literally 0 reason to get so honked off that some people are stupid enough to pay extra to play them.

It's like watching 5 year olds melting down that their barney TV show has been interrupted by something. It's utterly inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
It's artificial inflation. Some laws are for the moral good, and morally, this practice is bankrupt.

And it's a sentiment towards scalping in general. If you're not a scalper, then a law against it is utterly inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
 

amghwk

Posts: 1,034   +947
Simple.

Don't buy from these f-kers.

Don't ever pay a single cent above the MSRP.

Play other games in your collection first. Those that you have collected during the sales and those obtained for free from Epic every month. PS Plus subscribers can already get at least 2 free games every month. Complete them first.

Latest hardware is not the bread and water that need to be had NOW.

Unfortunately, humans are also greedy and impatient. Impulse buying will still be the root cause of companies like this surviving.

Also, those spoilt rich kids and those who think they have lots of money and think they can do whatever with their money contribute to this disease too.
 
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arrowflash

Posts: 348   +367
I have said it earlier too and will continue to repeat it, make scalping illegal. It is basically holding market hostage with hoarding and selling over MSRP. How are they being allowed to do it?

If we don't stop it then sellers will very rapidly raise the price of products seeing how much ridiculous amounts people are willing to pay. Think about it. Even after year of release many products are constantly out of stock by scalpers. Companies will invariably reach conclusion that they should raise the price to match what people are willing to pay scalpers. Be ready to pay double or triple for your favorite graphics card or console in near future.

I believe authorities in most of the world will be forced to make scalping a crime sooner or later. Scalping always existed but it's getting really out of hand in the last 5 years or so.
 

arrowflash

Posts: 348   +367
People just need to stop buying from them - problem solved.

In this case I'd agree. It's only a stupid game console after all and we know it'll become much cheaper in a few months.

Looking at the big picture, it's not so simple, though. Scalping is a practice that's been getting really out of hand in the last few years, and if it's not dealt with an iron fist by authorities sooner or later, it will eventually harm your options and your pockets, even if you're not an early adopter or impulse buyer.
 

arrowflash

Posts: 348   +367
They're not disrupting commerce. The exact same number of PS5s will be bought and sold, with or without them. And once those 3,500 mentioned in this article are sold, the shelves will still be empty. Not because of scalping, but simply because demand exceeds Sony's ability to supply it.

That's not necessarily true. I've seen many scalpers hoarding stocks of overpriced products for months or years when they're unable to sell all their stock at their asking price. They're probably dumb scalpers, but they exist and are very common.
 

Endymio

Posts: 1,334   +1,216
That's not necessarily true. I've seen many scalpers hoarding stocks of overpriced products for months or years...
Are you seriously suggesting a scalper is going to do this with rapidly-depreciating consumer electronic items, like a PS5?

Furthermore, if they hold the item for several years, then how is that scalper impacting commerce any differently than a person who bought the item to use themselves, then sold it years later?

Scalping is a practice that's been getting really out of hand in the last few years...
I remember people saying the same thing in the days of scalpers snapping up Cabbage Patch Kid toys and Teddy Ruxpins 30 years ago. Plus, we're in the middle of a global pandemic. Are you really that surprised over a few shortages?
 
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arrowflash

Posts: 348   +367
Are you seriously suggesting a scalper is going to do this with rapidly-depreciating consumer electronic items, like a PS5?

Dumb people exist everywhere, and like I said, there are lots of dumb scalpers.

I have seen it, both online and in brick and mortar stores. I'll never forget how back in the mid-1990s, a small mom and pop electronics store in my neighborhood got hold of a stock of Sega Saturns at launch and was selling them for an extremely overpriced markup. 7 years later in 2002 or 2003 most of the Saturns were still there gathering dust and they never even changed the price. I haven't checked again because I moved, maybe they managed to sell all of them by now since there's inflation and retro consoles have been increasing in value...

Of course this is just a funny anedoctal story, but far from being the only case I've seen. I've seen quite a few similar cases both offline and online, involving game consoles, cell phones and video cards. Of course in online stores I'd never bother to confirm if they actually had the items in stock or just forgot to remove them, but I wouldn't doubt it.

Furthermore, if they hold the item for several years, then how is that scalper impacting commerce any differently than a person who bought the item to use themselves, then sold it years later?

I'd have to ask how are they NOT impacting commerce? People who couldn't get hold of it because of a hoarder scalper will still want it and that will drive prices up since the supply will become smaller, and demand will become larger. Sorry but this feels like mental gymnastics to defend your viewpoint.

I remember people saying the same thing in the days of scalpers snapping up Cabbage Patch Kid toys and Teddy Ruxpins 30 years ago. Plus, we're in the middle of a global pandemic. Are you really that surprised over a few shortages?

This escalation of the scalping problem has been going on long before the pandemic though. Pandemic is just exposing it more.
 
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texasrattler

Posts: 1,151   +539
I cant believe there are comments advocating for making scalping illegal and prosecuting scalpers.

Guys. GUYS. Its a VIDEO GAME CONSOLE. It's not life saving medicine, food, or water. There are already laws in place to prevent scalping of necessary goods and services.

If you want to play modern woke vidya so badly, just pay the scalpers and get it over with so you can spend $2000 on DLC and microtransactions for FPS battle game #57 remaster the third. Or just practice patience. There are literally thousands of great games on the PC, you going to tell me you've played every single one of them? Every good game for every console you currently own?

If you HAVE played every good game ever made, get off your arse and put those hours into something useful. Video games are entertainment, there is literally 0 reason to get so honked off that some people are stupid enough to pay extra to play them.

It's like watching 5 year olds melting down that their barney TV show has been interrupted by something. It's utterly inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
You do know that people in TODAYs world make money off of playing video games. Maybe if you could, you wouldnt be judging people because they dont like scalpers or because they play video games. Its not their fault they make more money than youll make in 2 lifetimes.

The only thing thats inconsequential is you and yours words.
 

Snazz

Posts: 10   +8
How many PS5 exclusive titles are actually available and worth buying right now?

I'm PCMR (Posts Crap Memes-on-Reddit) so I'm a bit out-of-the-loop, what's the rush?
 

Endymio

Posts: 1,334   +1,216
You do know that people in TODAYs world make money off of playing video games.
If they're making large sums of money from it, I'm sure they can afford to pay a higher price. In fact, in this case the scalper is performing an essential service for them: ensuring that those who need and value the console most highly are the ones who get it. Otherwise, getting one would strictly be luck of the draw.

I'd have to ask how are they NOT impacting commerce? People who couldn't get hold of it because of a hoarder scalper will still want it and that will drive prices up
Basic economics. Sony made X units; Sony will sell X units. The presence of a middle-man in the transaction doesn't change that equation. The exact same number of people will do without one whether or not scalping occurs -- the scalper merely changes who exactly those people are, not how many there are.

The real problem here is Sony. Had they simply raised the price slightly, for a limited 90-day period, supply and demand would have been able to equalize. Plus, their additional margins thus generated would have enabled them to create additional supply more quickly -- running production facilities on overtime pay, expedited delivery of crucial components, etc etc. By basic marginal economics, a price hike of, say, $100 per console -- applied to ALL units sold -- would have done more to reduce demand than a $2000 price on just the slim remaining few available.

Sony chose not to do that, and to leave those profits on the table. Why? Because of attitudes like yours, and the blowback they'd receive from twittering fools on social media, accusing them of "profiteering from the crisis". It's a basic pattern repeated countless times in history. But people still refuse to learn from it, and continue to believe you can repeal the laws of economics with wishful thinking.
 

Aryassen

Posts: 153   +185
I cant believe there are comments advocating for making scalping illegal and prosecuting scalpers.

Guys. GUYS. Its a VIDEO GAME CONSOLE. It's not life saving medicine, food, or water. There are already laws in place to prevent scalping of necessary goods and services.

If you want to play modern woke vidya so badly, just pay the scalpers and get it over with so you can spend $2000 on DLC and microtransactions for FPS battle game #57 remaster the third. Or just practice patience. There are literally thousands of great games on the PC, you going to tell me you've played every single one of them? Every good game for every console you currently own?

If you HAVE played every good game ever made, get off your arse and put those hours into something useful. Video games are entertainment, there is literally 0 reason to get so honked off that some people are stupid enough to pay extra to play them.

It's like watching 5 year olds melting down that their barney TV show has been interrupted by something. It's utterly inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
You are absolutely, 100% right: scalpers are not the biggest problem of modern society, not by a million miles.
Still.
Can I hate their guts? Please?

(disclaimer: I don't want to buy a console, I can very well live without the latest AMD or NV products (though I do like them), and I advocated my views in the matter in various topics, but I just can't look at scalping as a "service"....sorry, just can't)
 

brucek

Posts: 800   +1,101
TechSpot Elite
If the scalpers are mostly instantly re-selling immediately after buying, then all they are doing is collecting an extra margin the manufacturer probably should have taken for itself. But they aren't responsible for the empty shelves, which would have been empty either way.

But there's a different scenario where the scalpers are taking advantage of long return periods and/or easy credit, to hold onto the goods for weeks or months while they wait and hope for top dollar. In that scenario they really are directly responsible for some portion of the empty shelves, because they are taking units out of supply and keeping them out of supply. I'd hope that purchase terms are as hostile to that scenario as is possible. (In the case of a subsidized good like a console, they'd also be doing additional economic damage by delaying the sale of the games, accessories, network memberships, etc. that would only be bought by a real end user.)

The longer term issue is perceived fairness. Many people who are otherwise in favor of a free market will nonetheless not like a new world in which shopping requires the services of a sophisticated bot network. It will take time for that mass displeasure to arrange and present itself in such a way that it is actionable, but in the long run, when you anger millions of people while pleasing few, something does tend to happen. It might be a decade from now but I don't expect the concept of using instant-buy-bots to extract extra profit to remain viable forever, most likely as a result of voluntary actions taken by retailers or manufacturers, but otherwise eventually via legislation to address it. (See, for example, the telephone marketers bombarding mobile phone users via easy fake caller ID numbers -- it is taking years, but the curtain has finally been coming down on them).
 

No Longer Human

Posts: 48   +64
I have noticed in my local computer store that all of the new tech, cpu's, video cards etc., are all FINAL SALE ONLY, one item per customer. They used to have a 30 day, no questions asked return policy, but on these items it has to be defective and even then they will only help you RMA with the manufacturer.
Does anyone think this is an economic business decision or was it more likely made to reduce scalping?
 

Aryassen

Posts: 153   +185
I would have thought it was more like a business driven decision, but that "one item per customer" is defenitiely an "anti-scalper" move. Would be interesting to know...
 

duckofdeath

Posts: 339   +447
Curious if stores could add a clause to their terms and conditions stating that certain goods are only sold for private use and not for direct / commercial resale.
I
They are, in the warranties. Unfortunately, the people these scalpers targets never read the fine print.
 

Endymio

Posts: 1,334   +1,216
They are, in the warranties. Unfortunately, the people these scalpers targets never read the fine print.
In the US, at least, a large body of case law outlaws contracts that prevent private citizens from reselling an item they legally purchased. Book publishers have long tried to enforce such restrictions, without success.
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 1,490   +1,087
Scalpers happen when your product is priced far lower than what people are willing to pay. The fix for this isn’t some kind of registration scheme etc, it’s a higher price. Sony will want the money scalpers are making and if the prices are higher they won’t sell out so quickly.

It’s awful but it’s basic economics. I’d expect next gen to cost more. Same with graphics cards and CPUs.
 

Austinturner

Posts: 152   +157
Scalpers happen when your product is priced far lower than what people are willing to pay. The fix for this isn’t some kind of registration scheme etc, it’s a higher price. Sony will want the money scalpers are making and if the prices are higher they won’t sell out so quickly.

It’s awful but it’s basic economics. I’d expect next gen to cost more. Same with graphics cards and CPUs.
I made this point last article and people spoke about the bad will it would create (there are tonnes of people angry at capitalism in this thread!).

So I actually think the best way they could do it is charge say 25% premium for direct pre-orders with guaranteed launch day shipping. To make people salivate, throw in a limited edition controller or something to make them feel a bit better. Then you push out the normal stock through your retail channels.
 

duckofdeath

Posts: 339   +447
In the US, at least, a large body of case law outlaws contracts that prevent private citizens from reselling an item they legally purchased. Book publishers have long tried to enforce such restrictions, without success.
That sort of applies in Europe too. But, that's for private citizen only, here. A business buying and reselling it is another issue. Tax wise and warranty responsibility-wise.
 

Paultimate

Posts: 32   +15
"The PS5's availability has suffered more than most gaming hardware released recently."

Rob Thubron. Have you been under a rock concerning the GPU crapshow recently? What an extremely clueless line that is given current events with gaming hardware.
 

Paultimate

Posts: 32   +15
Scalpers happen when your product is priced far lower than what people are willing to pay. The fix for this isn’t some kind of registration scheme etc, it’s a higher price. Sony will want the money scalpers are making and if the prices are higher they won’t sell out so quickly.

It’s awful but it’s basic economics. I’d expect next gen to cost more. Same with graphics cards and CPUs.


Wrong, but almost.

Scalpers happen when supply is severely lower than demand regardless if Nvidia is charging $5 or $500 for a $500 part. They buy up the limited supply and trickle it out to impatient buyers willing to pay. The balance there is to price stock according to closely monitored stock from nvidia(or whomever) and their partners against buying trends. When buying trends is obviously high due to seasonal rates and limited stock due to nvidia(or amd) having stupidly low supply compounded by scalping limiting it even further, then you have the current situation.

As long as there is no safety system in place that required suppliers that limit stock like this for whatever reason to require retail outlets to implement max-over-msrp limits for 6 months upon new hardware, we will forever have this cluster**** bastardization of capitalism supported by the greedy and those that think this is what uncorrupt capitalism is like (uneducated masses that vote out their asses).
 

Ludak021

Posts: 437   +298
Curious if stores could add a clause to their terms and conditions stating that certain goods are only sold for private use and not for direct / commercial resale.
I

In USA, companies are treated as private citizens in many regards, so you can't tell someone that they can't sell something they bought/own. It's legal in US. It's illegal in China.
 

Crinkles

Posts: 116   +112
Spoken like a true scalper. One with bad English.

How many true scalpers do you know?

death penalty would be nice.

There's some rumbling about using GAS and Firing Squads, maybe in Texas, to exact the death penalty.

Good old days indeed. Times when good men with gas killed men who had no gas. Lovely.

If the scalpers are mostly instantly re-selling immediately after buying

I think that's the intent, but have not watched scalpers so I don't know if it's reality. Waking up to a room filled with fairly expensive, unsold products after stock levels turn normal would certainly suck.

The longer term issue is perceived fairness

Nothing is fair, I can afford a certain price and others can't, and many prices are way too high for my wallet. But let's make everything fair and price all things at two cents. This can work until those without two cents start complaining, on the internet where problems go to die.

Utopia was cool until is started sucking.

(See, for example, the telephone marketers bombarding mobile phone users via easy fake caller ID numbers -- it is taking years, but the curtain has finally been coming down on them).

If this is so why is the first call I get every single day from a cold caller? I do not need solar panels and I don't want an extended warranty.

Karma is a b*tch and always, always comes back around.

Karma is a empty suit. Cryptographers bet on "Mary Kay Letourneau "killed in a car crash""
for years, in the end she wasn't. Cancer 1, karma 0.

Scalping was normally self-righting but in recent years they've been working from a superior position by betting A. Qustomer will pay a severely inflated price for a non-essential "luxury" product. Can't legislate stupidity away.