Friday, April 6, 2012

If you see something, say something.

I would like to thank all the support I have received after my rant yesterday. To be honest, it has been very overwhelming. I knew my collectors were the best in the world and you guys keep proving it over and over.

EBAY listings from disgruntled flippers

A strange thing happens whenever an artist ticks the flippers off. They get all miffed and start selling their collection of that artist's prints. In some cases they, and a bunch of their flipper friends, start to dump a ton of their work online at very low prices to try and drive the price of the artist's body of work down. It's happened a couple of times to me in small ways, and friends of mine in much more large scale manner. I personally think it's funny and could care less. I just want people to have my art. If they can get deal. I'm all for it. The great thing is some of my older sold out pieces, that rarely come up for sale, can be scooped up at great prices.

Point in case, I checked ebay this morning and saw that there was some great deals on some of my old UM, Phish, SCI and art prints. I'm sure some are from legit people, others flippers. Anyone looking for these has a great opportunity to score some winners. Go check out what's available...

Jeff Wood prints on Ebay

You've seen me state it before on this blog and I will again. I create posters so people can document moments and memories in time. I'm not creating investment pieces for monetary reasons. This is one of the reasons I get so upset when people are buying up large quantities of prints at shows that should otherwise go to the people who were at the show, and then jacking prices to resale. They are creating a false market for their own profit by doing this. Fans at shows just want something to remember the good time with. I hate to tell you how many emails I got yesterday from people at the Panic NYE and Playa shows that went early to get prints only to see they were all sold out. Ridiculous and very sad.
Answering some questions from yesterday's rant

A couple people ask some interesting questions that I thought I should address.

Someone asked about people who can't stand in line to buy a print, but have a friend do it, or pays someone to get a poster for them. To be honest, I have no problem with this. It's a lot different for someone to pay a dozen folks to do this so they can get quantity to flip and one person just trying to score a print.

So, what about the person who gets a couple of prints to trade for other prints they want? Hey, that's what collecting is all about. Trading is a huge part of collecting and I understand that. These are not the people I'm talking about. Once again, it's the folks getting quantity, sometimes using underhanded and unethical methods, setting astronomical prices and cheating others out of the chance to get a reasonably priced print.

It's really about common sense. If you want to know my thoughts on other questions, feel free to ask. Let's discuss it.
New Releases

Over the past few weeks Judy and I have been trying to figure out how we can get our releases into more fans hands and less in the flippers. We will be implementing and experimenting on our next release. We will not stop every flipper trying to buy, but we might get a few more prints into real fans collections. That's the goal. It will be an ongoing evolving process. We are also going to start the shift to new estore software in the coming months.

Stopping the flippers buying up large quantities at shows.

There is something I have been pondering. I know many of you have seen guys scooping up 10 or more prints at a show then reselling in the lots or leaving the shows to list on ebay. I know I've encountered them at shows myself, even getting into arguments when I call them out on it. Red Rocks is notorious for this. I'm thinking it's better just to out them so people can know who they are, direct confrontation at a show may not be the best method. Maybe a better way would be to take a pic of them with their stash and post it online. Since they are in a public place, snapping a pic isn't illegal. Any lawyers out there that want to chime in on this feel free. Nobody wants to get sued here, but there has to be a middle ground to get this information out.

I think getting pics of these people that we can familiarize ourselves and the band merch vendors with would aid in curbing the hoarding at shows. If someone knows their pic may show up online with them carrying a stack of prints they may be less inclined to be so arrogantly blatant about it. Maybe even the band's merch people will take control and ban them from buying any at all. I guess we can dream. And hey, before anyone goes out and starts posting pics, let's make sure we have the legal angles covered. I don't want to see anyone getting in trouble for trying to do the honorable thing. Once again, any lawyers out there reading this, please chime in with some advice on how to approach it, or if it's a horrible idea, tell us to drop the idea all together..  My thinking is that cockroaches tend to scatter when the lights come on. Maybe it's time we flipped the switch.

Another thing,  if you see something nefarious going down at a show, someone hoarding, gaming the system etc. point it out to the merch people, and after the show write the artist and band's management. Let them know what you have witnessed. It's your duty to keep them informed of people abusing their fans. Also, let them know how much you appreciate the fact that the bands are commissioning art for their tours and gigs. They really do listen and value your input.

Wrapping it up

I'm sure I've pissed a few flippers off in the past couple days. Glad to know you guys have my back. Understand, I got yours. This is not about money to me. It's about doing the right thing. Stealing or tarnishing people's memories is something I take seriously. Making someone pay ridiculous amounts of money for a print of a show they were at because some greedy chumps bought up the prints is tantamount to stealing in my book. I think it's something that needs to be openly discussed at length by fans and artists interacting with each other. As a community, we may not be able to stop this nonsense, but I think if we work together we can minimize the effect it's having. Let me know your thoughts on this. It's important we start these discussions and keep them going.

Once again, thank you all for your support.  Have a great weekend. Go see a show! And most all, thanks for keeping up the support for the artists drawing the face on the music, and the bands who commission their work.

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