Selling/Buying Ethics & Fellow Head-Fier's
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jpelg

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OK, I have a little pet-pieve and I am wondering what the rest of you think about it.

I have this unwritten, and perhaps naive, rule for myself that when I sell an item on this forum to a fellow head-fier, that I would not do so for a significant (or any) profit. I like the idea of a relatively small community that is trustworthy enough to make monetary exchanges and trade around quality headphone gear. More experienced listeners can "hand-down" their older, yet still perfectly usable, equipment to newbies while they trade up to better, more expensive equipment. Unless drastic market changes have occured, or significant time period has passed, I would not sell items at a price significantly higher than I had recently purchased from another benevolent head-fier.

I have been witness to such an act first hand. Someone here purchased an item I had for sale. He negotiated a price lower than my original (already reasonable) asking price, mainly under the pretense that he was a starving student and could not afford more. I was happy to do so and thought I was "passing the torch", so to speak, so that another person could enjoy a finer listening experience. Then, not a few weeks later, he has turned around and sold it to another (relatively new) head-fier at a significant profit.

Now you all do not have to educate me on capitalism, free trade, etc. And I guess I will chalk this up to another of life's inevitable lessons, which will undoubtedly not be the last. But I still feel more than a bit slighted, even betrayed. I was wondering what the rest of you feel about buying and selling things here to fellow head-fiers?
 
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Jeff Guidry

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I believe in Fair Market Value. It seems that you sold the item for less than FMV, and your buyer sold the item for more than FMV.

The only reason I would sell an item for less than FMV is if I really needed the money. Headphones and their various accessories are unnecessary for human survival, so if you're too poor to pay FMV, then you need to use the crappo phones that came with your portable player until you can afford FMV for my stuff.

The only reason I would pay more than FMV is if I really wanted/needed the item and I was unwilling to wait until another item came up for sale. According to Jeff's calculus, both you and the second buyer of the item got screwed, but really don't have anyone to blame but yourselves.
 
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lextek

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I try to sell to Hi-fier's first. And at fair prices too. What that person does with the item after. I have no contol over. Buyer beware, seller beware.
 
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Nick Dangerous

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Eh, just blow it off. If he was a student, he probably needed it for food money.

I price my stuff so it gets snapped up quickly. There is usually no time for haggling. If someone still cannot afford it but insists with lowball offers, I usually point them to a lower cost suitable alternative.

I would be angry if say a 55 year old banking exec posed as a Dairy Queen clerk. That would piss me off and I'd tell everyone if I found out about it.
 
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ai0tron

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Yes I agree with you jpelg. When I sell to head-fier's I sell at as reasonable price as I can afford. Making a small profit at the expense of my character is just stupid IMO. Some people obviously argue that FMV has more to do with it then some kind of code of honor. If I bought a MAX from Jude for 500 and turned around and sold it for 1,000 like a week later. I would definately feel like A) I have hurt my relationship with Jude. And B) I have hurt my opinion of myself as well.

Most likely people are going to say, gee Jude why didn't you sell that MAX at FMV?? And Jude will say, well, I can afford to sell it for less and thought I would give it to a fellow head-fier at a good price. Or perhaps he just wanted sell it as quickly as possible because the stock market is crashing. Either way, if I buy from him then resell at a higher price I am taking advantage of him. And that frankly is something I can't live with.

It reminds me of the great depression when banks were buying land at 5 cents to the dollar from desperate, starving families and reselling it for millions more. ****ing SICK is what that was. And what that person did is that same sickness on a smaller scale, true you are NOT starving, or desperate, but I totally relate to the feelings you have of being betrayed.
 
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pigmode

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I'm with you jpelg, but there are all kinds out there, including some pretty shrewd horse traders...
 
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kelly

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jpleg

*whew* at first I read this topic as "buying/selling ethics" and I was going to be sad to break to you that ethics aren't really something you can buy or sell.

I have a rather non-standard religion and philosophy and I don't expect people to agree or adhere, but I'll share this with you anyway and you can do with it as you wish:

Good deeds are in and of themselves self-rewarding. When you do a good deed for someone, no matter who that person is, you have made your world a better place to be in. It saddens me to see anyone resent having done a good deed regardless of the beneficiary's actions. You have already been rewarded once for your good deed by the good feeling you had when you did it. You ask to be rewarded again by seeing this person do as you would do. This is asking too much. You can only be content in life with your own actions, not the actions of others. Be someone you respect.
 
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Audio-Me

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I would never sell anything for more than I bought it for, but I couldn't give a rats ass if the buyer ripped off someone else. I would pity the fool who got played, but wouldn't be mad at the bastard.
 
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jlo mein

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I believe that making profit from used items is being unfair.

If you buy an item new for a certain price, you should sell it used for a lower price. You should not get the same amount when used as when you got it new, that just isnt right, and almost as bad as making a profit. (However, this is different if the item is discountinued or out of stock).

If you sell it used for the same price that you got it new, than you are ripping the buyer off. The buyer could get it new for that price.

Anyway, just my thoughts. I know most ppl here dont do that.
 
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BenG

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There is nothing wrong with selling your gear at a FMV, no matter the circumstance.

That said, I've sold stuff on here for lower prices, mainly to payback the community that provides info that you would have a hard time finding elswhere.
 
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taoster

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i would be pretty upset if someone resold an item and made a profit on it. i hate to think there are people prowling around the head-fi sales forum picking up specials and reselling it at a premium


which leads to another question, if you see someone selling goods at a premium(obvious with a goal to make profit), when you know it can be bought cheaper and brand new elsewhere would you interfere? ethics? if some newbie gets all excited about the overpriced good?
 
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Duncan

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Quote:

Originally posted by taoster
which leads to another question, if you see someone selling goods at a premium(obvious with a goal to make profit), when you know it can be bought cheaper and brand new elsewhere would you interfere? ethics? if some newbie gets all excited about the overpriced good?


Yes, but not publicly... thats one thing handy about this place... Private messages
 
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Here are some scenarios to think about:
  1. Someone wins gear in a contest. Since he won it, it was free -- should he give it away if he wants to offload it? Or should he never be allowed to sell it?
  2. Someone buys a pair of old headphones (like the HP-1's for example) for, say, $200. They're not common, and he posts positive reviews. Others find these headphones, and also post positive reviews. Given the scarcity of the headphones, and the elevating popularity, they become almost impossible to find for under $600 or more. Should the guy who bought them at $200 sell them for $200 or less?
  3. Non-headphone, real-life example: I bought a watch brand new 10 years ago at a fantastic price. The watch has gone up in value to the point where I could sell it now for more than I paid for it. If I want to sell it, should I sell it for the same amount or less than I paid for it?
  4. Someone finds a few dozen NOS Telefunken and Amperex tubes of a popular type for headphone amps (say, for example, 12AX7) at a garage sale for $5.00 total. Should he sell each one for 13.8 cents each plus shipping?
Though I understand both sides of this issue, I'm a fair market value believer. As its name would indicate, it's probably the fairest to seller and buyer. Situations pop up when one finds things for way under fair market value. Someone I know recently purchased an item at an antique show for $180 that was later appraised at $15,000 to $25,000. I don't imagine this friend would sell the piece for $180, and I can't say that I don't understand that.

I've sold some of my gear before, and I haven't done so to profit from the sales. However, if I happened to find some HP-1's for $200, then decided they weren't for me, and so wanted to put them on the market, I wouldn't put them up for $200 given the current market conditions where those headphones are concerned. I would probably put them up for auction, the value to be determined by the highest bidder. I would imagine they'd go for significantly more than $200.

Again, I believe fair market value is the fairest to buyer and seller.
 
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Ken

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What you do to others you do to yourself.
I know that almost sounds religious , but im not.
I beleive you treat people the way you want to be treated
 
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Audio-Me

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jude brings up a good point, if I had something rare and/or I had a hard time parting with it, but needed the money and the value had gone up, I'd list it for a little less than the current value of it, or take best offer.
 
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