Gear Swap practices
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Matthew Stenger
(MatthewStenger) - F

Locale: the beautiful but rainy northwest
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Gear Swap practices on 01/26/2014 14:48:14 MST Print View

"I think what you meant was that people should be able to offer to sell a thing they own for whatever price they want. Nobody has any inherent right to sell anything for whatever they want. That could get ridiculous."

Err, right obviously no one is guaranteed a sale no matter how high or low the price is.

But I feel you are just picking hairs with my wording there.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Gear Swap practices on 01/26/2014 15:08:07 MST Print View

nm

Edited by ArcturusBear on 01/26/2014 21:25:07 MST.

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: You screwed me! on 01/26/2014 15:30:02 MST Print View

Haha Trace, good luck on your sale, but I don't think this thread is screwing you, consider it a plug because you are a regular poster right? I'm sure you've got a fair price posted :)

And yes, you describe the situation accurately, I just don't think it's the best way we could be doing things, but in the end it is the way we do things. As you've pointed out in your argument, getting "screwed" is an entirely subjective way to describe a deal gone bad on GS. If we live in a world where people are content going about their daily lives calling each other "greedy scumbags" (my fault as Stephen pointed out) and "ignorant dipshits" then yes, you can't get "screwed" because it all rests on personal responsibility. But, if you have a problem with the idea of buying low on BPL, marking up, then reselling to other BPL members on the same forum (I do personally) and getting offended or annoyed when someone bargains in the way Justin did, and if you don't want BPL gear swap to turn into another Ebay, then I would argue you certainly can get "screwed". It's subjective.
I don't adhere to the idea that "the market will solve it" but that is just a reflection of my personal political bias and nothing more. I'm more interested in hearing people's perspectives on the issue because in the end while Greg and I might refuse to sell to a GS trader, I certainly don't expect others to do the same, and maybe somebody will say something that changes my perspective for the better. For example, at first I was feeling vitriolic when I heard Justin's account, but after reading some comments like Sumi's, I now agree that it was going too far to confront the guy, and I agree with you that ultimately the OP (and everyone on GS for that matter) has a choice to just move on. So thank you. But I'll say that a major reason why GS attracts me, and not Ebay, is the idea (albeit a potentially naive one as Katharina pointed out) that the BPL community (and thinking larger ultimately) could be a place where we don't take advantage of the "ignorant dipshits" out there because we can, but rather sell our gear at a fair price to someone who really wants and needs the gear because we buy and sell the gear to do what we are passionate about, getting outside.

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Gear Swap practices on 01/26/2014 15:33:45 MST Print View

I agree Justin, chaff it

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Gear Swap practices on 01/26/2014 15:46:56 MST Print View

"But I feel you are just picking hairs with my wording there."

Matthew, your written words were just plain misleading.

--B.G.--

Stephen Collins
(stephencwcollins)

Locale: New England
Gear swap vs ebay on 01/26/2014 16:28:44 MST Print View

"I'll say that a major reason why GS attracts me, and not Ebay, is the idea (albeit a potentially naive one as Katharina pointed out) that the BPL community (and thinking larger ultimately) could be a place where we don't take advantage of the "ignorant dipshits" out there because we can, but rather sell our gear at a fair price to someone who really wants and needs the gear because we buy and sell the gear to do what we are passionate about, getting outside."

Totally agree


"why did you feel more comfortable to post gear on GS before posting in the other forums? I find myself in the opposite situation; much more inclined to post in the other areas and honestly a little nervous about getting my price right on the backpack I want to sell. I want to make the price fair, and the idea of making an honest mistake there makes me a little nervous because the forum police will be there to check-in on me."

For me gear swap is super easy. You just post a price, a description, and some pictures. You're not really putting yourself out there. At least that's how I perceive it, which is why I was more comfortable posting on GS before venturing into other parts of the forum. I'm not concerned about anyone criticizing my price. If I put up a backpack or whatever for a certain price and no one wants, I'll just keep it or reduce the price.

As for "policing" GS posts, it seems to me if someone wants to post an item for a million dollars or whatever, let em do it. No one's going to buy it if the price is too high. On the other hand, now that I think about it, there have been times where I've been looking at items and they seem overpriced, sometimes even at a higher price than buying new and I've wanted to make a comment like "FYI buyers that's only $10 bucks less than buying new" or "FYI this same item is being sold for new at this site for less money". But I'm not sure that'd be my place. And in fact I myself have accidentally posted things for a higher price than they could be bought new elsewhere. It's hard to know every single price out there when there's so many outdoor gear retailers. In any case I would think overpricing is usually self correcting as no one will buy the item then the seller will reduce the price accordingly... so no need for policing at least when it comes to price.

However, I would support people chiming in to let potential buyers know that an item is being sold elsewhere for a better or comparable price, as long as they're not like "OP is a deceptive mercenary"... it's just adding more info to the market and as a potential buyer I would certainly appreciate it. Maybe that's what was meant by "policing" so sorry If just went on a off-topic "diatribe" hahaha. Dunno what others think.

Edited by stephencwcollins on 01/26/2014 16:30:29 MST.

Mark Heiser
(74Kilos) - M

Locale: Mid-Atlantic
Re: Gear Swap isn't transparent on 01/26/2014 17:00:44 MST Print View

I love pressure questions, haha.

To answer you're question, I would not partake in this practice because it is still a small community, with pretty good transparency. I don't prefer to have that kind of reputation. That being said if another poster wants to sit on gear swap and hawk for great deals to make 10% or 20% on the back end that's their prerogative. Just because I feel reticent doesn't mean its entirely immoral.

Consider also that each buyer can somewhat easily search this history and decide with which sellers to do business. Its part of the due diligence of being an informed consumer to know what you're buying and if what you're paying is fair.

You might find what poster X is doing to be a vile practice, and that's fine. All you have to do is wait for a similar item to come along next week, or put out a WTB post and skip over that person's offer should they approach you.

Again, I think purchasing outside of this community and then selling into this community is a different animal entirely. But the reputation I could get for taking away an opportunity from another potential buyer who would actually benefit from the use of a product is not worth the modest profit I could make when dealing wholly within BPL. Others may feel differently on the subject, and that's fine too.

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Gear Swap isn't transparent on 01/26/2014 18:07:03 MST Print View

Thanks Mark for the reply. You wrote, "But the reputation I could get for taking away an opportunity from another potential buyer who would actually benefit from the use of a product is not worth the modest profit I could make when dealing wholly within BPL."

I totally agree, the issue with people who ONLY frequent GS and are there ONLY to make a profit (no intention to be involved in the actual community that exists at BPL) is that they wouldn't face the same communal humiliation you speak of. If what they did was really disgusting they might be ostracized (or banned by the moderators) but if they are just making $25 dollars here and there (and there's no rule against that) no one is going to be up in arms about that. The general consensus I gather so far is that BPLers don't care about these people, and that's their opinion. I would just get a lot more satisfaction and comfort as a buyer and seller if GS maintained its communal environment rather than going the more impersonal direction of the Ebay model.

Stephen's idea was very interesting too. More info can be a good thing. Another reason why gear swap at BPL attracts though is that there is a wide selection of lightly used cottage manufactured gear. Cottage gear is rarely put on sale, so the likelihood of the new gear being available for just $10 more from the cottage company themselves is highly unlikely. It's hard to spin a price on a piece of cottage gear, and even more difficult to do that in this community of gear heads. But I wonder if this will hold true as more big manufacturers jump into the ultralight market and their products ultimately gain popularity amongst members here. Will these products flood GS? Will local cottage manufacturers be hurt? Probably, but I hope not. This is getting off topic though, Sorry.


BTW, how does this thread get moved to Chaff as Justin mentioned?

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Re: Gear Swap isn't transparent on 01/26/2014 18:11:03 MST Print View

"BTW, how does this thread get moved to Chaff as Justin mentioned?"

Threads can't be "Moved". But you can "continue on" in This Thread , already underway.

Bruce Tolley
(btolley) - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Gear swap practices on 01/26/2014 18:28:21 MST Print View

I really do not get the premise of this whole thread.

The question in the OP was about ethical conduct. If someone bought something nearly new in January 2013 for $100 and then tried to sell it in March 2013 still in nearly new condition for $120, why is that unethical? Maybe it is bad judgment or a bit of economic concupiscence.

Anyone who thinks $120 is too high is free not to buy it. If the made false claims about its condition or features, that would be a different issue.

Ron D
(dillonr) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Re: Gear swap practices on 01/26/2014 20:19:07 MST Print View

When people start offering to pay more for an item to prevent someone from taking too much of a loss I'll be more impressed with the "community" argument. Until then it just seems like an attempt to pressure sellers to take less than the value of an item.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Gear swap practices on 01/26/2014 20:34:37 MST Print View

"When people start offering to pay more for an item to prevent someone from taking too much of a loss I'll be more impressed with the "community" argument. Until then it just seems like an attempt to pressure sellers to take less than the value of an item."


Regarding community, well i guess i disagree. Guess you haven't seen all the nice things that people here have done for others in the name and sense of community here.

Some examples, i was selling a bunch of down jackets and vests here once. A member here bought them all, told me to donate them to a homeless shelter, minus one vest whom they asked me to send it to the one person who had shown interest at that point. This was very touching and moving to me, to the point that i teared up.

Or the free things i have sent to people, sometimes asking for the price of shipping and sometimes not.

There are other examples of such community type things that have taken place here that i've seen others mentioned.

It is these kinds of things which are creative and constructive in their very essence, and to me speak much about community.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
re Threads can't be "Moved". on 01/26/2014 20:38:35 MST Print View

They can now.

Cheers

Eric Johnson
(unimog) - MLife

Locale: Utah
Fascinated! on 01/27/2014 13:42:50 MST Print View

It never ceases to amaze me when, in a free market system, one person decides to define what the proper price at which another person should sell some item. And then decide for yet another person what they should pay for another item! I read through the thread simply fascinated with the concept! It seems to me to be perfectly acceptable for the buyer to determine if the price is appropriate.

Just speaking for myself, as a relative UL newbie, I feel much more comfortable participating in the gear swap my first year on here than in spewing wisdom that I don't yet have on the rest of the forums. Doesn't mean I don't ask questions in the forums, but I'm also intrigued by the judgement that I might be considered less of a community member by some due to this behavior.

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Locale: MaxTheCyclist.com
Again with the deleted posts? on 01/27/2014 14:02:27 MST Print View

Guys, it's really annoying when something is posted and then you go back and redact all of your comments.





Maybe next time, consider whether you stand by what you're saying in the first place instead of turning an entire thread of carefully written responses into a confusing waste.

Mike Gervais
(MikeG) - M
Took their ball and went home on 01/27/2014 14:10:16 MST Print View

when others wouldn't see the obvious and immutable wisdom in their opinions.

Larry De La Briandais
(Hitech) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Re: Re: Gear swap practices on 01/27/2014 15:05:07 MST Print View

"Greed, it's what's great about America and the general Western mind set."

"I have, for many years now, been frustrated at what is considered rampant greed in America..."

"Gear swap is interesting...yes, it is a community and I've been helped MANY times by people here."

While very few are willing to entertain the idea, capitalism, at least as practiced here in the USA is based mainly on greed. The general idea is to make as much money as possible. The idea of making a “fair” profit based on the time/effort involved is rare. It’s all about getting everything you can. Greed.

I have also been helped by sellers on gear swap. Gear swap is going to help me afford to go light.

I don’t mind anyone selling something on gear swap for more than I think it is worth. First, that is just my opinion, and second, it is the “American way”. However, I do think selling something that you got as a PFI is unethical. I won’t take any PIFs as I have nothing anyone on here would want as a PIF.

Ron D
(dillonr) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Re: Gear swap practices on 01/27/2014 16:27:21 MST Print View

Hi Justin - I certainly applaud when people have been generous to others in need. I just don't feel these type of instances are the same as expecting people to offer an item for less than their estimate of the value. If they do that's great but if not that's OK too. After thinking about it I suspect that our vision of community is simply different. Yours appears to be broader and more complex than mine, to me GS is simply commerce and subject to the same ethical considerations as any other transaction. I'll apologize for the hint of sarcasm in my previous post, but I think you are expecting too much from a broad internet community. Your expectations are more appropriate for a family or group of close friends.
Ron

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Gear Swap practices on 01/27/2014 18:28:15 MST Print View

"It's a free market. BPL does not have any official position on this."

More importantly, why are the SO MANY gear swap posts. I hate that they clog up the main page listing of recent threads. We need to put them somewhere else and bring back Chaff.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Fascinated! on 01/27/2014 19:03:15 MST Print View

Eric writes, "Doesn't mean I don't ask questions in the forums, but I'm also intrigued by the judgement that I might be considered less of a community member by some due to this behavior."

I don't see anything wrong with the above at all, but when you have a 100 plus postings, ALL and solely in gear swap (i checked, just to make sure i wasn't assuming overmuch), buy, sell, i don't really view that as someone being part of the BPL community. I see it as someone just using it to make money. For them, it's just another ebay, another way to make money. I say, that's what ebay and the like is for. Go to ebay if you want to do that.

Many people here apparently see that as fine, and generally i don't have a problem with it either, but i also don't agree when they buy something lower from someone here and turn around it sell it higher to someone else here. Just my take and opinion, as i would not do that to others generally and ***especially not here****. If i spent money or time fixing something on a piece of gear, then i would have no problem selling it for higher than i paid. Apparently i'm weird, a freak, different. I do feel i was being too preachy and pushy with it, which is why i erased my more long winded posts.