Seibertron/Ryan - I just want to dissect your statement, because I feel that an indignant tone (on my part, anyway) doesn't do anyone any good:
Seibertron wrote:If you guys want a convention exclusive, you guys have to go to the convention.
Reading back, I think you sound completely reasonable here. People should be used to your relatively "rigid" approach to TF issues by now (i.e. it's not a TF unless branded as such, if you want the exclusive go to the convention, etc.). These are the facts of life.
Seibertron wrote:If you choose not to go to the convention, then don't complain about people who try to make a little money off some products at the event that they attended. It's the name of the game. These trips are extremely expensive. If someone wants to offset some of their costs by flipping some exclusives, then so be it.
It's here that you start pushing buttons. As I said, it's not always a choice. It's sometimes assumed that just because there is expendable income to spend on some toys, it means we should have the means to splurge on a convention. It aint always so, and it doesn't feel so great to be reminded it aint always so. Or to "blame the victim," as it were.
That said, I do understand the desire to flip figures to help fund other things, and unfortunately, it's all too easy to point the finger at such people. Just like blaming Hasbro for every little thing gives frustrated people a scapegoat to pin things on. It's not always justified, but it does speak to the fact that the community is not necessarily being served efficiently. Even with mass releases, like TRU's MPs Prime & Soundwave, we see a stunning lack of operational savvy that results in upset fans almost everywhere.
Seibertron wrote:I'd know I'd like to recoup some of the $3,000+ my wife and I spent last week to attend Comic-Con on flights, hotels, food, my exclusives, the $140 to ship back my exclusives, etc.
Mention of money is the trigger. Many people simply don't have the means to participate in a trip of SDCC's magnitude, and your statement displayed some insensitivity to this.
Yes, I know there's a retail version of Metroplex available (and I plan on getting him!). Yes, I know that the SDCC variant is a convention exclusive. BUT, I don't want to be, and don't think I should be, told that if I want to buy Metroplex, that I should be spending an additional $3,000+ to have the opportunity to do so. Again, not everyone has that scratch. Facts of life? Maybe. Doesn't mean you have to rub it in. Being a TF fan and site owner has its advantages, and such a person complaining about costs related to a (perceived) dream job seems... out of touch.
It also makes you sound like you fall on the side of Hasbro in its inability (bad) or unwillingness (worse) to cater to a wide swath of collectors that crave a more widely accessible, official channel through which we can acquire premium products like this one. And I don't mean an exclusive channel like SDCC, or a limited 10 minute window of random online opportunity.
You have long been an advocate for this sort of thing - that is, actually giving the collectors what they want (or at least my Twincast Podcast listening makes me feel like you've been a collector advocate), and your statement above makes it seem just the opposite.
So yea... from where I stand, that's what this is about.