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magic-belgium
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Post by magic-belgium » Sat Apr 21, 2012 11:37 am

From what I could guess, Drag enjoys coming back to MTG/this site after a long period of problems. A collection brings a lot of personal satisfaction at times, it can be a burden at others.

His strategy/choice regarding this website should be respected until further notice, even though your point of view is absolutely relevant.

He has made sure that the site would not go down, whatever he decides in the future for it/himself, that is the most important thing. We were all concerned about this. Drag answered clearly and we can trust him.

Now he knows we all care about Librarities and are willing to make it live even after he decides (if he ever decides) to stop running it.

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Sat Apr 21, 2012 12:26 pm

Hi Members
I wish, I could spend more time answering or debating on posts. But for now, I try to update the website as much as I can, reading all posts in News, going on MTG Websites, etc...To give you an idea, I spent around 7 hours this morning, to create the new IDW subsection, finding info, adding the covers , resizing them, creating the Logo IDW for the cards, creating the Logo for the subsection, etc...I'm not a professional at all, I use mainly Photobucket to do everything, so probably for some Members here , they will do the same thing in much less hours than me. The searching info part takes so much time, as believe it or not, but on the IDW Official website, I did get almost no info, so needed to go to 7 or 8 different websites to gather all the info that has been included. I edit my own post about it, almost 15 times, but at the end, I have the satisfaction of the result, and if there's any mistakes or errors, as I don't own either the IDW Promos or Comics, I'm sure some members will point them to me.
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mystical_tutor
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Post by mystical_tutor » Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:35 pm

dragsamou wrote:I spent around 7 hours this morning, to create the new IDW subsection, .... but on the IDW Official website, I did get almost no info, so needed to go to 7 or 8 different websites to gather all the info that has been included.
And your hard work has really paid off for me. I am just about to cover that subject in my own project and you just saved me a ton of research and time. Thanks much

Gary

PS. In my introduction I mention that I borrow most of my information from here. Credit where credit is due. Thanks again.

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magic-belgium
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Post by magic-belgium » Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:30 pm

My collection wouldn't be half of what it is now after 6 years if I had not been part of this forum.

Sent my contribution too.

willard507
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Post by willard507 » Sat Apr 21, 2012 4:27 pm

What about a membership fee? A new member sign up fee would generate cash and keep the forums from being spammed by new members just looking to post eBay links or sell lists. This being a rarity site should mean new members have the bankroll for that to not even be a big deal.

I have already sent a donation but would also like to say that this site is a resource I would gladly pay yearly membership fees if that's what it takes.

Thanks Drag and welcome back!
I'm looking for odd/rare Mind Twists.

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Sat Apr 21, 2012 6:25 pm

willard507 wrote:What about a membership fee? A new member sign up fee would generate cash and keep the forums from being spammed by new members just looking to post eBay links or sell lists. This being a rarity site should mean new members have the bankroll for that to not even be a big deal.

I have already sent a donation but would also like to say that this site is a resource I would gladly pay yearly membership fees if that's what it takes.

Thanks Drag and welcome back!
Hi Willard
Thanks for your donation. A Membership fee, some years ago, a bunch of Members asked me to do so, at that time, I didn't do it, I didn't wanted any money from anyone. With the help of the donators, they will be added to Credits, "thanks for donating to", this Week-End as well as the New IDW subsection, as I just talk to my webmaster, the website will be moved the first of May, the 3 Domains names, have been taking care of also. I needed the money, on that very ponctual time. Regarding Membership fee, as well as others options to make a lil bit of money from this website, I will have to think about it, but it's not a priority in my life for now. I will also sell a part of my collection in the next monthes, to pay bills. Thanks for your interest.
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hammr7
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Post by hammr7 » Sun Apr 22, 2012 3:13 am

random wrote:
As someone who was intimately involved in the original investigation into commercializing custom MTG artwork, I need to tell you it is not an easy way to make money, even as a long term plan. I know, because I did the costing exercises for Ralph, when we originally considered turning artwork into production (posters, cards, or whatever) and then delivering them to a worldwide clientele.
-please show me pieces of art that you commissioned and projects you've been apart of. You emailed some artist/s and printing companies? What else do you "know" about producing this stuff. I can email an artist and if he's hungry I'll get a deal. If he's busy he'll ask for 5-8-10K or ignore me or tell me to fuck off. Do you know what WOTC pays for artwork? Do you know what other companies pay for art? Do you know what artists need work?
If you do the production cheap (and I am not even factoring in the cost of the artwork) you can't make money because fewer want something "cheap". If you do it nice the cost is higher, and you price out many potential purchasers. If you try to make it nice and limited edition you put an immediate ceiling on how much you can raise. And in every scenario you need to factor in global delivery costs.
This is true but then this is a COLLECTORS site. People here tend to own "rarity" items which means $$- limited editions and nice ones are indeed $$ but then that's the name of the game on this site, no? Shipping, everyone has to pay for their own shipping. Collectors are accustomed to it.
This is one reason why so many fantasy artists have so many limited edition items on their websites.
The reason they keep making them is cause they don't sell? "Fantasy artists" can have a very narrow profit margin and they're screwing around with unprofitable methods year after year?
Brom/Donato make $$$$$$$ - Larry Elmore for decades made all his income off of prints- he has a limited edition and then when it sells out he prints up another limited edition. Then the art books. The trading cards, screen savers, mouse pads. You know more than those guys about what sells? "Good" original art is evergreen- how do you think digital art makes money these days? You think these guys do 10 pieces of digital art per year for WOTC and it pays the bills all year long and WOTC covers the 401K or what?
such an undertaking can easily become a money pit
This is true. With mostly anything a project could fail. Such is life. I don't think there's a silver bullet "option" asides continued donations.
Is that realistic? Reading what has been written I'm assuming more might need to happen. Maybe I'm completely out of touch with reality-
I wont post on this thread anymore and here I apologize for antagonizing/beating a dead horse.
You are so out of touch with what I was saying.

First: As background, I spent 12 years in the print industry, and was intimately involved in both technical and costing aspects on the manufacturing side. I spend another 6 years on the buy side, in technical sales & marketing to an International clientele, and was solely responsible for either personally designing or approving every pamphlet, brochure, manual, poster, etc. for the companies that employed me.

Over those years I was involved in specifying millions of dollars of printed items. Some were huge orders, some were small specialty runs. So if you want to talk experience, I'll put my "printing" credentials, either actually producing an item, or costing it out, up against anyone. If you
go back far enough, you will find threads of me describing, in detail, how virtually every card error occurs. That knowledge came from having to fix such problems on a weekly basis for years.

Second: Like every industry, for every successful fantasy artist there are many who never make it. The most successful develop a following as a result of a commercially successful product with which they have an affiliation. The successful artists parlay that initial success into a "stable" of products, each becoming a revenue stream. Enough profitable products and the artist becomes a financial success.

Important to a fund-raiser for this site: Virtually no fantasy artist I know of got rich because of one piece of work. Rather each piece of work opened new opportunities for the next. If you want a better-known artist you pay more. But even the best artists produce the occasional (or more-than-occasional) clunker. A fantasy artist becomes successful if his "win" ratio is high enough. However, this site does not have the luxury, or funding, to try to build a portfolio of offerings. This site has one shot to succeed, because a financial failure will ensure that another attempt is not even tried.

The first evaluation (by Ralph), was doomed by constraints that pushed the cost to ~ $100 for a poster, and ~ $30 for a small group of tokens or proxies. Less expensive print processes and less expensive artists (I had one who would have done the work for a cut of the action, and no up-front cost) were rejected out of fear that sales wouldn't be sufficient with a cheap product or an unknown artist, no matter how talented.

If you look at prior fundraisers used by this site, we had trouble getting sales of 100 sets of Crazy Clown tokens (series 10). These were cheaply made, but weren't that expensive to buy. I bought out the final 10 sets so the site could get their cut of the money.

As a site, we have less than 1,000 members. Even if you get a 10% participation rate (high for this kind of endeavor) that means less than 100 purchases. What are you going to offer that makes a sales level of 100 a big money maker? Or what will you offer to the larger Magic community that will quadruple sales while not getting entities like Wizards upset?

That is a problem this site needs to resolve. Wizards allows lots of their copyrighted material to reside on this site, for the benefit of both the site and Wizards. But Wizards also let it be known (explicitly) that any sales by this site of competing items, or of any items that infringes on Wizards copyrights, would end with Wizards yanking all their protected material. Maybe Wizards was bluffing, but it certainly isn't my call to take the chance.

Many or the earlier most-likely-to-succeed "art" ideas included tokens or proxies that could compromise the Wizards relationship. Added to the cost of commissioning the original artwork, the challenges overwhelmed the likelihood of success.

The challenge, going forward, is how to excite the Magic community to buy something that isn't Magic enough to upset Wizards. And to do it on a shoestring budget.

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dry cereal
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Post by dry cereal » Sun Apr 22, 2012 7:59 am

Shoestrings you say? That'll never work.

I think the "products" we may want to consider are donations or membership dues. There are certain benefits to being a member of this forum, including access to such high-end collectors. Maybe we could put a price on that in the interest of keeping the community together.

May have been mentioned already. I didn't read the entire thread.

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magic-belgium
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Post by magic-belgium » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:33 am

As most of you have already noticed, the new GP Playmats are slightly different from the ones in the previous years. They don't use MTG cards art anymore. They use original art by MTG Artists.

Recently, a playmat was made with an original Ron Spencer art. The one of GP Lincoln Nebraska.

The price was (and still is) very high. From $180 apiece in the first days to $60ish now.

A playmat could be sold also on Ebay, marketing the website itself while raising funds.

The membership fee could be interesting if the contents of the forum was reorganised to write articles, or some sort of librarities-pedia. That's an idea I suggested here some years ago.

SCG premium membership is based on the exclusive contents of the website. This means there should be writers here to re-organize all the knowledge that has been written on the forum for years.

The thing is that the website should be run by a team in that case like any other website dealing with a community.

It is just a question of strategy now.

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Ertai's Familiar
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Post by Ertai's Familiar » Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:22 am

Sent, best wishes Alexis.
squt: Sweet! That's the best trade - one that doesn't cost a thing.

pickle.69: NO DRINK ON THE FUCKING TABLE

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:43 am

Ertai's Familiar wrote:Sent, best wishes Alexis.
Thanks Ertai.
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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Sun Apr 22, 2012 3:05 pm

For the Second Batch, will be added:
-Ertai
-Hayden
-Knutsen
-Magic-belgium
-Another Member that I wait the Pseudo from, as from E-Mail adress, I can't find it.
Let me know, if I forget anyone, but I think, it's correct so far.
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hammr7
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Post by hammr7 » Sun Apr 22, 2012 5:30 pm

dry cereal wrote:Shoestrings you say? That'll never work.

I think the "products" we may want to consider are donations or membership dues. There are certain benefits to being a member of this forum, including access to such high-end collectors. Maybe we could put a price on that in the interest of keeping the community together.

May have been mentioned already. I didn't read the entire thread.
Another hobby of mine is Vintage Audio Equipment. I belong to a couple of sites that specialize in that pastime. One of them has a novel method of generating funds to support the site.

The site is free to all for its informational content. However, in order to communicate buy, sell, or trade information among members, there is a special section. You need to pay a nominal subscription fee ($25 per year) to access those forums. Any attempts to post buy sell or trade discussions in the informational parts of the site are immediately deleted by the mods. If you do it enough times your membership to the entire site is rescinded.

It takes a bit of effort to enforce the rules, but manages to generate enough revenue to keep the site growing.

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Doymecca
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Post by Doymecca » Sun Apr 22, 2012 6:42 pm

hammr7 wrote:
The site is free to all for its informational content. However, in order to communicate buy, sell, or trade information among members, there is a special section. You need to pay a nominal subscription fee ($25 per year) to access those forums. Any attempts to post buy sell or trade discussions in the informational parts of the site are immediately deleted by the mods. If you do it enough times your membership to the entire site is rescinded.

It takes a bit of effort to enforce the rules, but manages to generate enough revenue to keep the site growing.
I think this would be a great idea for this site. I am sure that many of the members here have received a great deal of items for their collections through working out trades on this site.

My only (personal) concern with this method is that you leave these forums and this site to become the next MOTL type of site. All be it with a membership fee. This includes all of the spam and bad sellers that MOTL attracts just with higher value cards and deeper pocket suckers. I for one do not want to be paying someone $$$$$ only to find out that the misprint backwards black lotus I was buying actually doesn't exist.

I guess if people can get vetted and spam can be controlled I would be all over this idea.

Just my $.02

~Andy

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Sun Apr 22, 2012 6:54 pm

Hi Guys
I read everything you wrote, I do want this website to be very Unique, not a clone of any others MTG website, the cost to maintain it per year, is ok, some Members may think, that I'm Elitist, in the way, that I don't add thousands of Members like others MTG websites, I do believe in Quality rather than Quantity, and I never refuse a Member that has sent me as requested an E-Mail, for approval. As a result, I do believe this website, is a very safe one, sometimes some problems can happened of course, but, I do trust the Members of this forum, I have made so much trades or sells, for so much money in the past, and I know , I'm not the only one, and everything went always smooth for me. I just need to make a lil cleaning of 500 Members selling Viagra, Cialis or Exotic women, or whatever :-D
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