This post has been triggered by my tantrum Twitter last night which led to some great conversations with the community. Recently I have buying up Panini Points in hopes of being prepared should Panini add a card that I need for my Prestige collection in its rewards catalog. I have bought 3 or 4 of them and paid for shipping for all but one that came in a plain white envelope. Now for the record, if I pay anything under $2, I have no problem getting my card in a PWE as long as it is toploaded. Recently one of those cards came in a PWE without a toploader for a card where shipping was $2.89. This leads me to two questions: the neverending PWE debate and should redemptions:
I have been burned so many times by people who charge me for shipping and ship in a PWE that I have included a message in the top of my Ebay profile:
“AngryCardCollector.com I don t run a card shop. Anything I sell is to get money so I can buy more cards. If I buy a card from you where you charge me more than $2 in shipping and don t ship in a bubble mailer, I will ask for a refund on shipping.”
http://www.ebay.com/usr/pandanwh. I am actually going to change it soon because this week I realized that I could say it clearer grammatically. I just haven’t changed it because I don’t want the seller that I am dealing with to call me out on it. I am also going to include that I will leave negative feedback if not refunded because that has been my modus-operandi: whenever I get a PWE and confirm that I was charged over $2 shipping I ask for a refund and leave negative feedback if the seller gets angry at me or refuses to do it. I know more than anyone that being a seller is hard enough but I do live by a few rules and this PWE issue is one of them. I also always ask for $2 back so the seller so can at least keep his stamp money; although in my mind a seller who sends a card in a PWE deserves to lose all of it.
For those that don’t know: shipping in a bubble mailer under five ounces within the US is $2.67. Now I have no problem if I am charged anything under $4 to account for the cost of a bubble mailer. Also while Ebay gives a discount on shipping, they negate that by taking a higher percentage of a seller’s shipping cost; probably because too many people get greedy and try to make money off shipping.
Before moving on to the redemption question, I am going to bring up a tangent. I will leave the seller that I am currently having an issue with negative feedback unless he refunds me in the time frame that I gave him for one very reason: he says that I didn’t ask nicely so he is refusing. So I must ask what is a nice way to say: “Hey, I don’t like that you screwed me on shipping. Refund me before midnight on this day or I will negative feedback.” Obviously I say it a tad nicer but you get the gist of it. As far as I am concerned, you can write this out in the nicest way possible, if that is even a scenario, and the seller will still call you out because he sees right through it. So as far as I am concerned saying that you won’t refund anyone for that reason, regardless of the issue, is a way of showing that you are the dick and not the person who you are accusing. Although, for the record: I do not deny being a dick in some of my messages with sellers. In a few cases, it takes the seller two messages to respond, so I am forced to get harsh.
Now moving on to redemptions. As far as I am concerned, any card being shipped in a PWE deserves a PWE; there are no exceptions. This included redemptions. Also redemptions deserve their own bubble mailer if you charge over $2 shipping. This is actually a perk for me as I reuse bubble mailers because I unfortunately live in a world where $2 matters to me – call me cheap but I am not denying that and that is the reality of someone living on a tight budget.
Panini points are a joke. I am not denying that, even though I have picked up cards that are valuable to me via the program. The points are at the bottom of the redemption ladder. Now just because points are the cheapest of the redemptions, doesn’t mean that they deserve any less than other redemptions. Taking away the Trout’s of the world, let’s use another example: take a redemption for a player like Justin Bohr, David West, or any late round NFL draft prospect. Their cards have always come to me in a bubble mailer. I would love to hear if they haven’t for you.
I have been collecting hardcore since 2003, and have bought several redemption cards. When shipped to me, they have always come in a bubble mailer when I paid for one. Truthfully I have never thought about redemptions deserving less when shipped. As far as I am concerned they are no different to me than base cards or inserts that are worthy of being sold individually. Some people have taken me to task for demanding my points be at least toploaded. Here is my rationale for this: while I throw the card away after I use the code, what if I was going to flip it? I would want it in the best condition possible. Card condition reflects on me regardless if it is a base or Ted Williams autograph.
I would love to hear people’s opinions on this. Also feel free to call me out if you think that I am wrong on any of this. My mind wants to be changed because I know that will make me easier to deal with when this inevitably happens again. This is a never ending debate in the card community so don’t be afraid to share. I also re-Tweet thoughtful responses on Twitter to this.