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Steve Fuller
(sfuller) - M

Locale: Central US
. on 10/17/2012 18:40:52 MDT Print View

Nick - I'm of the opinion that the buyer is free to ask whatever they want, and the market will decide if the item will sell at that price. I'm not terribly familiar with many of the items for sale, but I'm smart enough to use a computer and "The Google" to see what the regular price is. The site itself tries to present prices on the items that it sees for sale in the posting. I've made some offers below, what asking price was for things I've purchased here. They haven't been insultingly low, but reflected what I was ready to purchase the item for.

I feel that replies to the original poster of "I can get this new here for X" should be conducted via PM. Not discrediting your opinion, just how I tend to view using this forum (and others like it on other sites I frequent). :)

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re Gear Swap Indecision - Is it just me or... on 10/17/2012 22:56:56 MDT Print View

I guess I just don't understand the original complaint. This is how capitalism works--just on an actual microcosmic level. Until money and/or products change hands, everything is still negotiation.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Re: Re Gear Swap Indecision - Is it just me or... on 10/17/2012 23:54:45 MDT Print View

It's too bad Brian won't elaborate on his complaint.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: Re Gear Swap Indecision - Is it just me or... on 10/17/2012 23:59:33 MDT Print View

Do we really need another thread that devolves into gossip and childishness?

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re Gear Swap Indecision - Is it just me or... on 10/18/2012 00:04:09 MDT Print View

Good way to start that Clay.

Scott Pickard
(gon2srf)

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: hmmm on 10/18/2012 00:33:16 MDT Print View

"Many sellers list their used gear for way too much money." ...

"Gear sells so fast"

So, obviously not...

LMAO....:)

I love gear swap and have bought pants, shorts, shirts, jackets, stoves and have had a wonderful experience (knock on wood)every time. I can also confidently say I have rarely paid more than say 60-70% of retail and no sales tax.

Edited by gon2srf on 10/18/2012 14:29:24 MDT.

spelt !
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
'Too much" is in the eye of the beholder on 10/18/2012 05:58:16 MDT Print View

A lot of items sold here are brand new, or "used one night in the backyard." I know technically there is depreciation involved, but as far as condition goes, those items are in the same state as they were when they left the rack. If you are expecting gear identical-to-new to go for a steep discount, I think that is expecting a bit much. I don't blame someone for trying to recoup their purchase price. And, as pointed out already, those items sell, so obviously there are factors other than price involved in buyer's decisions. Used gear that's actually *been* used tends to be priced pretty fairly in my opinion.

J P
(jordo_99) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
sounds like someone should mellow out a bit on 10/18/2012 08:44:50 MDT Print View

So, I've yet to sell anything on this site but I've bought/sold stuff online (mostly forums and craigslist but ebay too) for almost 10 years now.

9/10 times when I list an item I determine the price by considering what I would be willing to let it go for and what I would purchase it for. That's not always going to line up with what other people think is fair. The other 1/10 I'm inflating the price slightly (like 80%) because it's a way to get a fair price.

I've ran into this quite a few times...where I've had an asking price that someone ignores and offers a low ball (often 50-60% of what I'm asking). I'll answer their questions in hopes of convincing them it's worth more than they offer (because I take great care of my possessions) and then try to meet somewhere we are both comfortable with...eventually some of these people get very upset, as though I wasted the past few days of their life when in reality it was only 5-10 minutes and they did the same for me by not being fair as well.


I've been on both sides of this frustration and from my point of view, that's all that this is...someone is upset because they were excited about getting a really good deal on something and then it didn't go through because they couldn't reach an agreement with the seller on what is a fair price...even if it was a fair price for the seller and they just realized they wanted to keep the item, there's no reason to get butt-hurt over it. You're just making your own lives more difficult by having this sort of attitude. Let the small things like this slide and you'll be much happier in life.

Raquel Rascal
(flutingaround)

Locale: Rocky Mtn. West
I had a feeling.. on 10/18/2012 08:54:19 MDT Print View

I had a feeling if I opened up on the forum about some thoughts I was having that it wouldn't go well...and I was right. I just feel bad about opening up.

I was set straight, but it doesn't feel good.

Raquel Rascal
(flutingaround)

Locale: Rocky Mtn. West
about negotiating publicly on 10/18/2012 09:06:31 MDT Print View

Oh, and I think it is perfectly okay for a potential buyer to negotiate publicly on the forums and post links to get the same item new at a similar price. This could help others who may want to buy the same item. I find it fascinating to read.

If I'm not competitive enough to actually buy something myself, at least it's good to get educated about gear and where to buy it.

The internet allows us some anonymity. If you were witnessing someone negotiating in a store- you would never step in and say "Um, excuse me, could you do this somewhere else". I actually think it is rude when people say in these forums "Please take this conversation to PM". Really? It's a public forum and people should say what they want without the etiquette police stepping in. As long as it is respectful.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: about negotiating publicly on 10/18/2012 09:37:02 MDT Print View

Using the PM's for negotiating keeps the traffic to a minimum an avoids complications in the process. It is the only forum where I would encourage as much use of PM's as possible. All the posts of "payment sent" and "item" received" just take up space from the other items.

I see no true competition on purchases. Some buyers have more access to their computers and with thousands of members, it just becomes luck I think. It really only comes into play with gear that is hard to find used, like cottage-made products.

That said, I think Gear Swap is a wonderful service that has allowed me to try all kinds of gear and resell what I didn't like.

I would love to see sizes posted in the titles!

As far as prices, I'm on Hammockforums often and I've been surprised how many used items sell for near retail prices. Hammocks are even more of a niche market and very hard to find used locally. The market *will* rule I guess.

Mark Hespenheide
(mhespenheide) - F

Locale: Wasatch and Redrock
general thoughts on 10/18/2012 10:39:53 MDT Print View

In my opinion, any online forum (BackpackingLight or otherwise) should be thought of as a bazaar or swap meet. It's a pretty freewheeling place. Politeness is always appreciated, but any sale is fundamentally a personal agreement between buyer and seller. The seller has a right to ask any price he/she wants to, but no one is obligated to buy at that price. The buyer has a right to offer any price he/she wants to, but the seller isn't obligated to accept that price.

Personally, buying items then becomes a factor of desirability, rarity, and likely discounts from the manufacturer. If it's a standard item from a large manufacturer, I'd expect a discount of about 30% even if the item is only worn once. I can't return the item, and it's harder to warranty. If it's used and worn, I'd expect 40-50% off MSRP. If it's a rarer item, all bets are off. It may go above MSRP.

Good prices go fast. The lower the price, the faster it will go. It doesn't make sense to say that the prices are too high, and things sell too quickly.

The only time I've been truly annoyed was on another forum, when I had what I thought was a solid agreement with a seller for an item, and then he backed out to sell it for a higher price. That felt dishonorable to me. My only real recouse, though, is not to deal with that specific seller in the future.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: I had a feeling.. on 10/18/2012 12:17:33 MDT Print View

I'm hooked on a feeling, but.....

"I had a feeling if I opened up on the forum about some thoughts I was having that it wouldn't go well...and I was right. I just feel bad about opening up.

I was set straight, but it doesn't feel good."

Sure wish you wouldn't feel that way. I don't think anything didn't 'go well.' I also don't think you were set straight.

You had an opinion. I had a different opinion. Just because they're different doesn't mean one or the other has to be invalid. They're both valid.

So don't feel bad. And don't stop posting your thoughts. We can disagree and still appreciate each others thoughts. At least I do. I'm glad you've joined in on the forums. I hope you continue to contribute - whether I might agree with what you have to say or not.

Dena Kelley
(EagleRiverDee) - M

Locale: Eagle River, Alaska
Re negotiating publicly on 10/18/2012 13:10:06 MDT Print View

Raquel stated, "The internet allows us some anonymity. If you were witnessing someone negotiating in a store- you would never step in and say "Um, excuse me, could you do this somewhere else". I actually think it is rude when people say in these forums "Please take this conversation to PM". Really? It's a public forum and people should say what they want without the etiquette police stepping in. As long as it is respectful."

I agree- the key phrase being "as long as it's respectful". On another thread yesterday I did state (along with 2 other people) that they potential buyer should have used PM because he practically called the seller a thief publicly. It was uncalled for. IMO, you look at an ad and you look at the price and you do a little research and you either decide the price is right or you don't. That's capitalism, and God Bless capitalism as far as I'm concerned. Getting into personal attacks on a seller because you think they should take more of a loss on their purchase than they wish to isn't cool.

I also agree that people shouldn't get so angry about a seller withdrawing an item or selling to another person. There are a few instances where getting peeved might be justified- say if you had a firm agreement and then the seller reneged- but other than that you don't know the circumstances. Perhaps the seller got so many low ball offers he decided not to sell it. Perhaps he had it listed in more than one location and sold it elsewhere. Perhaps he was only selling it because "mama" was making him, and she relented. Perhaps another person emailed him first and made the commitment before you did. Who knows? It's not worth getting upset over, I don't think. That item, or another that is similar or better will come up eventually.

Brian Johns
(bcutlerj) - M

Locale: NorCal
Public to a point on 10/18/2012 14:33:08 MDT Print View

I agree with Dena to a point. I think the Gear Swap listings, although public, should be the domain of the original poster and those interested in his or her wares. For example, if I list a video camera for $50 more than the current retail, it's fair for you to tell me so in my thread if you're a truly interested buyer. If you are just playing price police,however, then keep your mouth (uh Keyboard) shut and leave my listing alone. I can ask what I want and buyer beware. I think it's disrespectful to publicly criticize someone's listed price or highlight an innocent mistake. If it comes across in the course of the bargain, though, that's a different story. I might say, I'm interested but this is $50 less on Amazon. Will you take $X for it?

As to withdrawing a sale, if no one has committed to buy it, that's your prerogative. It's called the life of the offer. It's only open as long as the seller says it's open. Once the offer is closed without being accepted, there is nothing to complain about. That said, I once committed to buy an item on here and the seller said someone else asked for it after you, but since I am paying shipping, I want to sell it to them with a more expensive item. Neverminding that shipping was included in the offer price, I paypal sent $2 extra dollars to cover the additional cost and said I'd appreciate it if they would honor our agreement. Then the excuse became mailing two packages (the item would have fit in an envelope. That was the lamest deal gone bad ever in my history of online buying and selling. I think myself pretty fortunate. Too bad it happened on BPL, though. The musician forum is a much more likely place for it. You know who you are.

All that said, it's a very fine line. I could be totally wrong and don't care. I have on occasion PMd users to try to "help" when they were overpriced, not to criticize, but to let them know, they may make a buck more quickly if they try a different approach. Usually this is met with appreciation. When it is not, it's as if I insulted Momma. Oh well; I try to care less.

Edited by bcutlerj on 10/18/2012 14:39:49 MDT.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Public to a point on 10/18/2012 14:56:21 MDT Print View

Still waiting to see if the original Brian will clarify his complaint.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Re: Public to a point on 10/18/2012 15:04:03 MDT Print View

spam...marking this thread in case it becomes another invisible thread

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: general thoughts on 10/18/2012 15:11:34 MDT Print View

Mark H wrote:

In my opinion, any online forum (BackpackingLight or otherwise) should be thought of as a bazaar or swap meet. It's a pretty freewheeling place. Politeness is always appreciated, but any sale is fundamentally a personal agreement between buyer and seller. The seller has a right to ask any price he/she wants to, but no one is obligated to buy at that price. The buyer has a right to offer any price he/she wants to, but the seller isn't obligated to accept that price.
---
Yes, politeness is more than appreciated. :-)

From the legal PoV, putting an item in a shop window with a price on it is an 'invitation to treat'. It is not a binding offer to sell at that price.

Does that mean you could walk into a Department store and make an offer below the ticket price? Yes. It is then up to the store mgr to decide whether to accept or decline. That almost no-one ever does this is irrelevant.

Cheers

Nick G
(HermesUL) - F
Let's cut to the point. on 10/18/2012 15:35:04 MDT Print View

Some people seem to be a little bit worried about using my name, so I thought I'd step in to make it relevant.

The thread Dena and a few others have referred to is here:
http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=69397

It's public, anyone can read it. I'd like to quote my first post in the thread, which I later clarified so as to make it clear that I was an interested potential buyer. Anyone who browses these forums can confirm that I've talked about getting a lightweight, compact digital camera. In fact, last time I mentioned it, I had the GoPro Hero 2 recommended to me. Didn't happen to have the cash, so I didn't get it at the time.

My first post: "I don't mean to interfere with your business or anything, but I'd recommend lowering the price, at the very least to match the Amazon asking price. It'll sell better that way."

Now, I understand that I come off rather harsh sometimes over the internet, and the same is true in person. However, I conduct myself as respectfully as is possible in order to speak my mind. I don't believe that this is crossing any lines

By posting publicly and politely, I was giving the seller the benefit of the doubt and assuming that he was unaware of the competing price. To PM the seller, in my view, would be to assume that his intention was less than honest.

To say that someone is a thief is rather ridiculous in my book; this is a site designed to share and enhance our outdoor experiences, and only the BPL staff and a few hardworking small business owners are making any money. I used no language to indicate that I thought the seller was being dishonest; indeed, quite the opposite. Those who wish are free to form their own opinions and share them freely.

As stated earlier in the thread, I'm big on communication. We are all here to better ours and each others outdoor experiences, and that can only be achieved through clear and respectful communication.

I agree almost entirely with Brian's last post; and I do make a point of staying out if I'm not an interested buyer. You're right, it's the sellers domain--if he wants to tell me "Hey, I wish you had PMed me that instead of posting it, just to avoid trouble," then great! I'd be more careful in the future.
However, I must point out the irony of people butting into a communication between potential buyer and seller and saying that a something I said was inappropriate.

I made a similar post today on another item I was interested in, and the seller was very happy to be corrected, changed the price which he'd been hanging onto for nearly a week, and sold the item within ten minutes.
By the time I went back to the thread, the poncho was long gone: http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=69221

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Let's cut to the point. on 10/18/2012 15:46:16 MDT Print View

"My first post: "I don't mean to interfere with your business or anything, but I'd recommend lowering the price, at the very least to match the Amazon asking price. It'll sell better that way."

Well, that wasn't your complete first post. Your first post also included a link to an Amazon page selling the item. It was that link, really, that prompted my reply (which, I'll note, didn't say anything about the appropriateness of your post, either good or bad).

"I used no language to indicate that I thought the seller was being dishonest; indeed, quite the opposite. Those who wish are free to form their own opinions and share them freely."

I agree, in your original post you didn't use such language. And, in your original post, you also didn't use any language that would make anyone think you were an interested buyer, either (and, I think, few people read, and remember, every post in these forums, so to think anyone should have known you were a potential buyer by your previous posts would be a stretch, don't you think?). It simply read, at least to me and, obviously, others, that you were mucking about in someone's attempt to sell something. Hence the replies.

FWIW.