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Subject: 2019 DTC VFM Admin Thread rss

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Bob Gallo
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GatorDave wrote:
Hey Bob, I found a tiny bug in your VFM Listing tool. It seems that when you sort Buyer a second time (from Z-A), it takes you to the 2018 tool (link: http://www.bobgallosolutions.com/DTC2018VFM_buyer_noPhoto.sh...). Probably an old URL in there. Other than that, it works great. I just don't want to see anyone get confused.


Good catch. Fixed. I need to speak with my QA team for letting that get past us ;-)
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Dave
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StormbringerGrey wrote:
GatorDave wrote:
Hey Bob, I found a tiny bug in your VFM Listing tool. It seems that when you sort Buyer a second time (from Z-A), it takes you to the 2018 tool (link: http://www.bobgallosolutions.com/DTC2018VFM_buyer_noPhoto.sh...). Probably an old URL in there. Other than that, it works great. I just don't want to see anyone get confused.


Good catch. Fixed. I need to speak with my QA team for letting that get past us ;-)


QA is always the first group to get outsourced
 
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Kirke Lawton
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Also sorting by Seller doesn't appear to work. It does something, but nothing related to the seller names. http://www.bobgallosolutions.com/DTC2019VFM_seller.shtml
 
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Bob Gallo
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klawton wrote:
Also sorting by Seller doesn't appear to work. It does something, but nothing related to the seller names. http://www.bobgallosolutions.com/DTC2019VFM_seller.shtml


That's it, I'm firing the QA team ;-) ... actually, this was a problem with the manual processing and not the code. Fixed with current update.
 
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Bob Gallo
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General Announcement: I just created a tool that compares archived copies of the Alpha list to detect deletions and relisting.
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Kirke Lawton
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I would LOVE an "exclude sold items" option.
 
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Bob Gallo
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klawton wrote:
I would LOVE an "exclude sold items" option.


Sort by buyers. The top of the list will be unsold items in alpha order.
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Kirke Lawton
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StormbringerGrey wrote:
klawton wrote:
I would LOVE an "exclude sold items" option.


Sort by buyers. The top of the list will be unsold items in alpha order.


True. That’s functionally the same.
 
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Dave
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StormbringerGrey wrote:
General Announcement: I just created a tool that compares archived copies of the Alpha list to detect deletions and relisting.


Get those scallawags!

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Bob Gallo
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Re: Item Deletions - there has only been one occurrence of an item deletion since I began comparing the list against the archive (granted, only about 2 days ago). I have been in touch with the user and I'm convinced it was a genuine mistake and not likely to be repeated (not by that individual anyway).

The question has been asked if I can create a place holder to correct the order following a deletion. The technically correct answer is yes, I can create a place holder and drag it to a new position in the list. The practical answer is no, even at 2000 entries dragging a dummy item through the list is painful and it's only going to get worse.
 
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Kirke Lawton
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Bob, are you running the Math Trade this year? I just checked, and last year it opened at the end of April with the Offerings deadline at the end of May. If we're going to going to use approximately the same timeframe as last year, I propose we start it now and repeat the end-of-May deadline. Three weeks is plenty of time to list items.
 
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Dave
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With the somewhat heated discussion going on in the VFM itself, I had a few minutes and thought I'd run some stats using Bob's tool. I made sure to redact out the names of of the sellers, as to not start anything here (we all are in the same boat, to buy and sell games). I was actually surprised.

(Note: these totals are a few hours old at the time of posting)

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Bob Gallo
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A concern has been raised about the use of the VFM by retailers and the possibility of crowding out private sellers. I checked with Molly Malcolm and we’re both in agreement on the substance of the following policy and its compliance with the exhibitor handbook.

Quote:
Use of the VFM by retailers
• As long as a VFM participant uses the list in the spirit of a flea market we see no grounds to discriminate based on the user’s source of inventory. “In the spirit of a flea market” is defined loosely as a willingness to haggle, negotiate bundle pricing, and generally respond to the internal market economy of the VFM. This policy is consistent with the physical flea market which also has no specific prohibition on the source of inventory and has been used by small retailers in the past. Please note that all VFM participants must be convention badge holders and abide by both the DTC ToS and the VFM ToS above.
• Retailers are asked to be respectful of the interests of buyers and private sellers. Please avoid bulk listings during peak hours when private users are likely to do the same, namely 5:00pm to midnight EDT. Also please recognize that nearly all participants are savvy comparison shoppers “looking for deals” and are unlikely to respond positively to common retail pricing.


Personal Commentary: In the interest of full disclosure, I purchased games from Jon Tyler last year. I found Jon willing to negotiate his pricing, offer blanket discounts on inventory as the VFM drew to a close, and in general participate in the VFM just like any other user. I believe the VFM benefits from the added inventory, particularly during the slower weeks between the initial rush to post and the discounting mania at the end. I also found Jon’s negotiated prices filled a niche below CSI but above used market prices giving private users plenty of space to be competitive. As far as flooding the list is concerned, I’d rather see NIS products at a good price than the 10th copy of last year’s free giveaway but I’m not going to restrict either. It’s easy to scroll past items that are not of interest. As far as the slippery slope argument is concerned, Jon participated last year and to my knowledge there were no negative consequences. If another retailer is willing to register with the con and participate I welcome the added variety and competition, however, I strongly emphasize the word participate. Simply dumping a catalog list of games and occasionally harvesting the results would very much be against the spirit of the flea market and will be addressed accordingly.
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Michael Schober
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That seems like a very fair way to handle it.
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CPBelt
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I'll second that Jon and his wife were some of the nicest people we met last year. He gave me some nice deals on Pokemon sets I got for my son. I often use the MtG game mat he sold me dirt cheap. Plus, he was able to buy a game from me that he and his wife really wanted to play. So it worked both ways.

Personally, I'm more concerned about the fake accounts that have been created just for the VFM again. I won't buy from or sell to anyone with a "new" account that is clearly a fake sock puppet account. It doesn't take a PhD to spot them.
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Scott M.
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I am ok with the rules and decision made, now that folks are aware of what was going on.
 
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Cartchamp
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Bob, what about users who make “changes” to their listings that don’t include any meaningful updates (e.g. game condition, status, price, availability) just to draw attention as a “new” post ? This seems to be a workaround your enforcement of checking for deleted posts/relisting. Similar to churning the list, if everyone did that, there would always be hundreds of “new” items to sift through. Since none are actually new, it’s a bit annoying and difficult to manage.
 
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Dave
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I was thinking a bit about this a bit last night... I wonder if in future VFM's, there was a policy where seller gets X number of slots to post (let's just say 20 in this example). You can post up to those 20 entries. After that, you cannot post a future listing until one of those previous 20 used slots actually sells.

Quote:
Example:
Dave has 50 games he wants to sell at the 2020 VFM.

He posts the first 20 games on Day 1 of the VFM. He comes back to add games a few days later and notices he has only sold five of those first titles. He can either keep posting a few at a time, as space opens up over the weeks (effectively slowing the flood of new posts from a single poster) OR he can try to lower prices to entice a higher close rate on those old listings so he can add larger batches of new listings.


I think a mechanism like this could spur more aggressive pricing for large sellers, as well as slow down the flood of entries from these large sellers. Plus, it wouldn't affect the folks that only have a few games to sell.

Obviously, this could be gamed by sock-puppet accounts and such, and would require additional programming on Bob's side to easily check/enforce this slot limit, since I doubt there is anything built-in to the BGG site.

Just brainstorming here. I'll take no offense if you want to poo poo all over the idea
 
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Matt Simpson
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Cartchamp wrote:
Bob, what about users who make “changes” to their listings that don’t include any meaningful updates (e.g. game condition, status, price, availability) just to draw attention as a “new” post ? This seems to be a workaround your enforcement of checking for deleted posts/relisting. Similar to churning the list, if everyone did that, there would always be hundreds of “new” items to sift through. Since none are actually new, it’s a bit annoying and difficult to manage.


It might be too much trouble, but, I just keep the VFM page open to where I last left it on a separate tab and refresh periodically and ignore all the "new listings", marking the subscription as read. Any items I'm interested in along the way I subscribe to then you get a geeklist item subscription notice instead. Or you can manage subscription/geeklist item
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Bob Gallo
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Cartchamp wrote:
Bob, what about users who make “changes” to their listings that don’t include any meaningful updates (e.g. game condition, status, price, availability) just to draw attention as a “new” post ? This seems to be a workaround your enforcement of checking for deleted posts/relisting. Similar to churning the list, if everyone did that, there would always be hundreds of “new” items to sift through. Since none are actually new, it’s a bit annoying and difficult to manage.


This would be very hard to police. It may sound counter intuitive, but I don't subscribe to the VFM list at all, only my own items and items I have made offers on. Like most other users I check a couple times a day but I start with the end of the list and work backwards until I hit the last page I remember viewing. It's true I won't capture price changes but if I've already passed over a game then I'm really not interested and don't want to be bothered with notifications, even if legitimate.
 
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Bob Gallo
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klawton wrote:
Bob, are you running the Math Trade this year? I just checked, and last year it opened at the end of April with the Offerings deadline at the end of May. If we're going to going to use approximately the same timeframe as last year, I propose we start it now and repeat the end-of-May deadline. Three weeks is plenty of time to list items.


I am not running the Math Trade. I would suggest that anyone interested in the Math Trade should check with Molly on the DTC Facebook page, she is very responsive to questions.
 
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Jon Tyler
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Cartchamp wrote:
Bob, what about users who make “changes” to their listings that don’t include any meaningful updates (e.g. game condition, status, price, availability) just to draw attention as a “new” post ? This seems to be a workaround your enforcement of checking for deleted posts/relisting. Similar to churning the list, if everyone did that, there would always be hundreds of “new” items to sift through. Since none are actually new, it’s a bit annoying and difficult to manage.

I use the BGG++ Chrome extension to move through my subscriptions. It's not perfect and, as stated, changed listings still appear as new, but moving past them is very fast for me so I don't mind.

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/bgg%2B%2B/jhjmefkp...
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Kirke Lawton
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StormbringerGrey wrote:
klawton wrote:
Bob, are you running the Math Trade this year? I just checked, and last year it opened at the end of April with the Offerings deadline at the end of May. If we're going to going to use approximately the same timeframe as last year, I propose we start it now and repeat the end-of-May deadline. Three weeks is plenty of time to list items.


I am not running the Math Trade. I would suggest that anyone interested in the Math Trade should check with Molly on the DTC Facebook page, she is very responsive to questions.


Roger that. I try not to bother Molly since she's got so much on her plate, but I'll ask.
 
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Jon Tyler
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Hello Admins,

Given the unrest I caused with my postings, I wanted to get Admin feedback before I do anything else.

The wife and I talked and decided to drop all our listings to the lowest we could accept at this time. In addition, I'm planning to post a bunch of giveaways (like I did last year) to enable folks who buy a game to get a free promo for the game. Hopefully, that will ease some of the concerns of us being a retailer.

I'm wondering if I should go back and add a disclaimer to my listings like below. The only reason I didn't this year, is because no one seemed to care last year. Let me know your thoughts - if I'm overthinking it, if you have suggestions, etc.

Full disclosure: I am a retailer, however I will be covering the sales tax.
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Bob Gallo
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JonTyler wrote:
Hello Admins,

Given the unrest I caused with my postings, I wanted to get Admin feedback before I do anything else.

The wife and I talked and decided to drop all our listings to the lowest we could accept at this time. In addition, I'm planning to post a bunch of giveaways (like I did last year) to enable folks who buy a game to get a free promo for the game. Hopefully, that will ease some of the concerns of us being a retailer.

I'm wondering if I should go back and add a disclaimer to my listings like below. The only reason I didn't this year, is because no one seemed to care last year. Let me know your thoughts - if I'm overthinking it, if you have suggestions, etc.

Full disclosure: I am a retailer, however I will be covering the sales tax.


Hey Jon, unrest or not you should feel free to participate in the VFM like any other user. Re: disclaimer, up to you. I think most people know but it might help with anyone thinking you're trying to hide that fact. I will make a further suggestion by GM but it should be perceived as advice only and not policy.
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