8.06.2009

What to do with the anger with Beckett

Many of the people in the blogging community have vented about the idiocy that is the pricing that Beckett purports to be an expert on. It has gone as far as VOTC wearing a "Beckett Sucks" t-shirt to The National.

I understand that there is disgust with the product, but where is the action? I think that there is a good start for a replacement for Beckett, and everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, who wants an alternative, should stand behind it, support it, augment it and tout it.

That is Zistle.

(Disclaimer: I am a member of Zistle, and one of the biggest contributors to it in terms of card scans and Box Break reviews, but I am not getting paid in any way to help.)

Zistle is a simplified, streamlined and more efficient version of the Beckett online card checklist, and also has Chat, a Forum, feedback, and a system of putting a value on the cards that is much more realistic than Beckett. I'm not sure how Josh and Ashley cull the data for the prices that are displayed, but it certainly is based on "reality" more than Beckett.

The whole Joe Collector issue that popped up recently also points to the illogic that is having a dual price system where people buy and sell items based on a percentage of the book value. That's crazy!

I have to admit that Beckett is useful in several aspects. First, it is comprehensive. No matter what you think of their management, this is obvious. Second, the values listed are useful from a trading perspective. That is, only for relative values. The people I trade with locally use it to make sure that everyone is getting fair value. I understand it and use it to, just so that no one gets shafted.

So, what do we do with all this anger? People should keep complaining, but they should also do something about it. Put your cards on Zistle. Trade through Zistle. Or make your own alternative (sorry, Josh & Ashley). As for me, I'm already knee-deep in Zistle and would like to get more people further involved and invested in it. If the blogging community supports Zistle, I can envision that it could become a real competitor to Beckett, even publishing a price guide.

8 comments:

Captain Canuck said...

not to mention that Zistle has never, ever, frozen or crashed anyone's browser.....

sound familiar beckett users?

paulsrandomstuff said...

How is Zistle's pricing any better than Beckett's if you don't know where they get their data?

Gellman said...

Second, the values listed are useful from a trading perspective. That is, only for relative values. The people I trade with locally use it to make sure that everyone is getting fair value. I understand it and use it to, just so that no one gets shafted.

This argument makes no sense, as many people understand that two cards that book for 50 bucks may sell for 10 and 20 dollars respectively.

The issue remains, Beckett tries to assign a static price to a dynamic value. That will never work. Something is only worth what someone else will pay for it, bottom line.

MattR said...

Zistle is great. It would be nice to see more people on it. I only have part of my collection on there but I'm working on it. :)

Collective Troll said...

I have never used either Beckett or Zistle and I think I am much happier for it... I like to trade cards that I don't have for cards that I do... If you are trading a 1:4 pull for a 1:4 pull, I don't see the need to get price guides involved... Thats just me. When I go in the card shop and ask for the price on a card, he always says something like, well it books for 30-well how much is it?

Grand Cards said...

Here here! Personally, I'm not terribly concerned about card pricing--I want cards that I don't have and will give away something more valuable to get it. I agree that these things are relative to the people trading, although there is certainly a market price (eBay) out there as a benchmark. More importantly, having just started out on Zistle, it is a fun way to organize my collection, make trading easier and keep track of things. My biggest complaint is that their checklists are severely lacking and are mostly user generated. If they could find a way to get the checklists straight from the companies--they way that beckett does--then it would be killer. In the meantime, I'll keep uploading my cards little by little to do my part. I encourage everyone to at least go there and check it out.

Don said...

I also am slowly uploading my collection to Zistle. I like it, and find it useful. I will also second the comment on checklists. The checklists are lacking, but I find myself concentrating on filling in the holes in the set checklist before adding my cards. When I add my cards I will fill in the team name field (if it is empty) for most sets, unless it is a Fleer set.

I will comment on value with the same thing I tell everyone else. My collection is only worth what someone is willign to pay for it.

skoormit said...

I use Zistle nearly every single day to keep my collection organized. I don't really use it for pricing information. But I don't really care about pricing information all that much. I just want other people to be able to find the cards that I have that they want and vice versa as easily as possible.