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WSJ Writes a Puff Piece Praising a PS5 & XSX Scalper

DeepEnigma

Gold Member
Dec 3, 2013
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Are you saying he's exploiting people who are willing and able to spend more than market value for superfluous entertainment product? That's exploitation to you?

It's amazing to me that people buy and resell sneakers, magic cards, books, collectible toys, Lego etc and you don't see the level of manchild whining about it like you see with videogames.
I think the morally bankrupt part is supporting someone who uses bots to scalp up consoles that the common folk can't have the opportunity to buy at retail MSRP. All to enrich one's self.
 
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TrueLegend

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mercclass

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Every choice has consequences. That kid chose to scalp PS5's to make money and his consequence is most people think he's an asshole.
 
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Neilg

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Jun 17, 2021
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I don't know how it works in the US, but where I live you can resell some items, but you can't run a business if you are a person and not a company.

The article says he's fully registered as a business.

Article says revenue is $1.7M, profit is $110k. So in this case we subtract profit from revenue to get the expenses of $1.6M

We don't actually know if that profit is gross or net. We assume net but who knows if he has kept all expenses tracked. Plus i've already said that when based on his initial investment of $5k, it's a great return. Strictly talking numbers.

After tax & expenses profit of $110k for a 40hr week, working from home is better than most people in their early 30's are getting. It's not what i'd choose to do for money but he's still in high school, it's a serious hustle.
Kid is going to pay his own way through college and if he can keep hustling through school, his work ethic alone is going to make a good story. It'll be easy for him to rustle up independent investment for a future company with an article like this behind him. If you're going to walk into a VC meeting and come out with a few m to build a company, you need a good story - that's worth more than the money.

If scalping keeps getting worse, the only thing to change it will be government intervention in making sure a small number of people can't control the supply of goods and affect demand in a meaningful way. While the healthcare companies are still showing everyone the best methods to use and how to get away with it, thats a long way off and might never happen. This kid isnt your enemy. He's just got a lot of free time and an inclination to see how far he can go.
 
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dave_d

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Jan 31, 2005
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When I see stories like this all I can think is every college should require absolutely every undergrad to take at least econ 101 so they'd understand market forces or the concept that prices are subjective, not objective.
 

TheDreadLord

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Jun 8, 2013
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I think this is ok, it is just a correction of offer and demand. Dumb are the people that pay a premium for a piece of plastic that they eventually could buy much cheaper and, perhaps, a better version of it.
 
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Jun 28, 2013
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Yeah fuck all those nasty war criminals and their....
- checks post it-
... inflated console prices.
But its not just a console, its a PS5. Its a proven fact, you can get 20x more pussy if you have a PS5 or 30x more onlyFans subscribers. Your lack of understanding the situation is just sad.
 
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Genx3

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Jun 23, 2019
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If this guy is using bots to screw would be customers from buying consoles from retail then screw him.

Why are people so desperate to buy consoles that they are willing to pay a couple of hundred over retail?
 

HoodWinked

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The problem is supply so even if "bububut capitalism" there aren't enough consoles.

So the alternative would be the people in charge would get first dibs and the left overs they'd give out in a lottery system. And the ones that did get lucky would also resell them anyways. Its really no better but somehow even more corrupt.
 
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cartman414

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May 3, 2006
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Scalpers are just the boogie man for why people can't get consoles. If you put in the work (Like the scalpers do) you'll get a console without having to pay a scalper. The issue is there is an extended shortage of stock and there still would be without the scalpers. Back in the day I sold Wii consoles (UK) they were not hard to find, I'd go to a retailer put in a preorder and I'd always get one within 2 days. People didn't want to wait 2 days to get one and would complain they were always sold out. Then you know scalpers got burned on the PS3 and WiiU because there was enough free stock.
Not everyone has the luxury of not being busy when the consoles go up.
 

Bluecondor

Member
Apr 19, 2005
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Just from the details in the WSJ story, it really does sound like the kid in the WSJ story is being bankrolled by his rich Dad. And, just reading this story, I can't help but wonder if the rich Dad has a friend or friend of a friend at the WSJ who is doing the Dad a solid by writing this up in a story that makes the kid sound like the next Elon Musk.

Following up on my point from earlier, this line from the WSJ article has me convinced that the write is either a friend of the kid's Dad or has some hidden/other motivation to hype this kid a bit:

"At first Max didn’t need to use any sly tactics to amass a console stockpile. He preordered 10 from Target’s website in September with a debit card, using his own savings. “It was public knowledge but most people weren’t starting to look that early,” he said. Target didn’t respond to requests for comment."

is it just me or does this not add up at all? Back in September (and even back into the summer), I remember every pre-order opportunity at Gamsestop, Wal-Mart and Target, etc. selling out instantly. There is no way that he preordered 10 PS5s from Target back in September without the help of a bot - or maybe it will come out that his Dad gets PS5s through work or something.

Meanwhile, the WSJ writer makes it sound like Max was way ahead of the curve, and that very few people were even aware of PS5 back then, as if Max logged on to Target.com one random day in September and there was a stockpile of PS5s that he ordered and paid for ten one by one.
 
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MaulerX

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Jan 8, 2012
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So it was bad for somebody to buy a shit ton of hand sanitizers and profiteer during a pandemic but it's ok for some one to do the same with one of the few things that kept us sane being stuck indoors during the same pandemic??
 

GymWolf

Banned
Jun 11, 2019
19,239
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Is it though? I'm no US law expert, but is reselling goods worth thousands of dollar without paying tax perfectly legal?
They are doing an article and the guy is not in trouble with the law doing that, so i think that yeah, his particular case is legal or at least it dance on the thin line between legal and illegal.
 

Tumle

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Jul 12, 2014
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I'm at two minds with this... is he botting to get the consoles ? then, fuck that little rich kid.. (he is a rich kid if his dad can just throw away a million dollars on his Kids side hustle)..
But if he is putting in the work to get these consoles from stores.. then good for you little rich kid ( still have the backing that most people dont have though...)
 
Feb 18, 2019
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The fact that his parents are OK with him doing this show that they have failed in parenting.

the simpsons paddle GIF
LOL just wait for a random pissed someone to rob the shit out of him
 
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mxbison

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Dec 9, 2020
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I more blame people paying his prices if they wouldnt this wouldnt be a thing.

They only pay those prices because fuckers like him buy up all the supply in the first place.

I really don't understand how people keep coming up with excuses for these shit stain scalpers.
 
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Jul 30, 2009
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It's Sony/Ms and retailers' fault (that let those fuckers abuse their stores with bots).

The kid did well. Corporations are fucking us and letting others fuck us too.

And still, selling consoles for a profit should be the least of our worries.
 
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Feb 20, 2021
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Flipping and retail arbitrage are great ways to make easy money. Hats off to this kid. The stores can fix this if they open up in store sales again. Sneaker companies can fix this if they make more than 1,000 pairs of a given shoe.


You have people on unemployment that don't need it, the government spending money they don't have, banks ruining lives by seizing homes with impossible loans, and THIS is what draws your ire? Fine, but it's a luxury item. And I 100% guarantee that if he didn't do it, 1, 10, or 1,000 other resellers would jump right in behind him to take the PS5s he isn't buying. You can't stop supply and demand issues until you meet the demand.
 
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SafeOrAlone

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May 22, 2018
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It's very frustrating but you have to force yourself awake and blame the system or the retailers for not preventing this. I think it's very easy to let a mixture of (justified) frustration and jealousy cloud your judgement here. But it's annoying. There's no denying that.

That said, I do think it's unfair to wash away people's frustration by saying scalping is all well and good, because people, or foolish people, are obviously willing to pay.
The thing is, it seems a lot less foolish when you're raking in the big bucks. So what scalping does is simply limit consoles to people with the highest incomes. It goes from sales of the console being random to sales being directly aimed at those with more disposable income.
And maybe that is fair? I'm not sure I'd argue one way or another. But I can see how it leads to a feeling of great frustration.
 
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ipukespiders

Member
Oct 9, 2006
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For 7% return he would have been better off with an ETF.


If this guy is using bots to screw would be customers from buying consoles from retail then screw him.

Why are people so desperate to buy consoles that they are willing to pay a couple of hundred over retail?

Instant gratification generation?
 
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TheDreadBaron

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Oct 27, 2019
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I just ordered my 11th PS5 for a friend today and I honestly just don’t feel bad about it. They can’t get one, I help and they pay me anywhere from 50-100 bucks as a thank you. I’ve ever sold two of these for profit because they insisted on paying me extra to make sure they got it (between 750 and 850)
I’d hardly consider that scalping, that’s doing a friend a solid because you have skills they lack and they want to repay you, hoarding rare items to sell at double the msrp is what’s fucked, you have nothing to feel bad about?
 

Blond

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Dec 10, 2019
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I’d hardly consider that scalping, that’s doing a friend a solid because you have skills they lack and they want to repay you, hoarding rare items to sell at double the msrp is what’s fucked, you have nothing to feel bad about?
Okay I see what you mean.
 

Genx3

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Jun 23, 2019
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The problem is supply so even if "bububut capitalism" there aren't enough consoles.

So the alternative would be the people in charge would get first dibs and the left overs they'd give out in a lottery system. And the ones that did get lucky would also resell them anyways. Its really no better but somehow even more corrupt.
At least they waited on a figurative line.
Bots is basically skipping the line by using software cheats to get in front of the line.
 

e&e

Banned
Nov 17, 2020
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He's spent $1.6 Million to make $110,000 in profit.
I didn’t read the article but is this true?
Edit: Kid is also now in a different tax bracket (?). IRS is salivating, better have a good accountant…
 
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supernova8

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Jun 2, 2020
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I more blame people paying his prices if they wouldnt this wouldnt be a thing.

The scalpers themselves are absolute fucking scum, but you're right. Scalpers wouldn't exist without people willing to pay scalper prices.

Honestly what annoys me in these modern times is the whole bot thing.


Back in the day there were certain safeguards in place (so that this biatch couldn't buy $100,000 worth of iPhones and sell them on eBay), but now it's just a fucking circus.

I don't have the answer but there must be something retailers can do. I suppose even if there is something they can do, they have no incentive to do it.
 

Kilau

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Dec 12, 2013
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I didn’t read the article but is this true?
Edit: Kid is also now in a different tax bracket (?). IRS is salivating, better have a good accountant…
Yes, near as we can tell from the article the numbers are:

$1.7 Million in revenue
$110,000 profit.
$5k initial investment
Revenue minus profit puts cost of goods/expenses around $1.6 Million
 
Jun 17, 2021
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The scalpers themselves are absolute fucking scum, but you're right. Scalpers wouldn't exist without people willing to pay scalper prices.

Honestly what annoys me in these modern times is the whole bot thing.


Back in the day there were certain safeguards in place (so that this biatch couldn't buy $100,000 worth of iPhones and sell them on eBay), but now it's just a fucking circus.

I don't have the answer but there must be something retailers can do. I suppose even if there is something they can do, they have no incentive to do it.
So if there is a scalper whos a single parent, lost his business during Corona, and is hustling to support his kids by finding ways to get systems and resell them, said person is "fucking scum"?

Its funny what this thread reveals.

Teenagers and people who can't afford to get a next gen system til they're more readily available = fUcK tHeSe sCuM pEoPlE

Grown adults and/or ppl who could afford the marked up price = why would I be mad a teenager making bank by hustling when with or without him this is going to happen?
 

supernova8

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Jun 2, 2020
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So if there is a scalper whos a single parent, lost his business during Corona, and is hustling to support his kids by finding ways to get systems and resell them, said person is "fucking scum"?

Its funny what this thread reveals.

Teenagers and people who can't afford to get a next gen system til they're more readily available = fUcK tHeSe sCuM pEoPlE

Grown adults and/or ppl who could afford the marked up price = why would I be mad a teenager making bank by hustling when with or without him this is going to happen?

Yeah of course they are. They are reselling them at crazy prices and completely distorting the market. They add zero value and are acting as an additional middle-man that nobody wants or asked for.

Get out of here with your apologist nonsense.

go away gtfo GIF
 
Oct 26, 2018
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Let's say there is a collectors edition of a game. All sold out. No more made. Guy decides to sell it on eBay for $500.

A-ok? Or scum?
 
Jun 17, 2021
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Yeah of course they are. They are reselling them at crazy prices and completely distorting the market. They add zero value and are acting as an additional middle-man that nobody wants or asked for.

Get out of here with your apologist nonsense.

go away gtfo GIF
In other words, mommy won't buy you one til they're in stores so lets rAgE and label every scalper a fUcKiNg sCuMbAg
 

TheMay30thMan

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Aug 23, 2018
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The fact that his parents are OK with him doing this show that they have failed in parenting.
This kid made $1.7 million and his parents failed him because people like me can’t get next gen consoles? No, I think these parents are very proud. I would be.

If you want to be mad at someone, be mad at the companies that can’t supply the demand. This kid isn’t losing sleep over you.
 
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Dr.D00p

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Parasites on Wall Street praising parasites in the wider community...looking after each other, as always.
 
May 22, 2018
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The scalpers themselves are absolute fucking scum, but you're right. Scalpers wouldn't exist without people willing to pay scalper prices.

Honestly what annoys me in these modern times is the whole bot thing.


Back in the day there were certain safeguards in place (so that this biatch couldn't buy $100,000 worth of iPhones and sell them on eBay), but now it's just a fucking circus.

I don't have the answer but there must be something retailers can do. I suppose even if there is something they can do, they have no incentive to do it.

Is that a young Marc Rebillet?!
 
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e&e

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Reading this story reminded me that my 16 year old sister almost made 50k starting an online shop last year when the pandemic hit, and now well on her way to make twice that this year! Her social platforms blew up too with multiple influencers behind her helping her out! Really proud of her taking initiative like this. The tools are plentiful out there and it’s easier now than ever.

What rubs me wrong with this kid is that he cheated his way by using bots (even if legal it’s still morally bankrupt). Retailers need to get better at curbing this. Can someone explain to me how bots even work?
 
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SkylineRKR

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Jun 22, 2011
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When I was 16 I couldn't invest 5k worth of money. This is just a case of a guy already growing up wealthy, who can afford it to take a risk. And its a grey area at best. Here we would say, The devil always shits on the biggest pile.

I've got more respect for kids who start with nothing but their dedication.
 
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synce

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Sep 18, 2012
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I mean his dad has a point. These are non essential items and it's capitalism at work. I'm perfectly fine without a PS5 or RTX card, there's a ton of shit in my backlog I could play if I was bored. The only people you should be angry at are the people who feel it's necessary to BUY a PS5 for $1000.