(Scalpers ....What is wrong with re-selling iPhones ?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by MicroMacTosh, Sep 25, 2013.


Are scalpers legitimate businessmen, or unethical opportunists ?

  1. Legitimate businessmen

  2. Unethical greedy lizards

  1. MicroMacTosh, Sep 25, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 26, 2013

    MicroMacTosh macrumors member

    Nov 6, 2010
    The 5s, at 16 GB, costs Apple less than $200 to make, minting a staggering $450 a phone on the base model.

    The cost to make the higher storage models is just marginally higher, resulting in stupendous profits of over $600 for 64 GB versions PER PHONE.


    What is wrong with entrepreneurs like myself who brave the lines, the cold, the lack of sleep, and acquire and sell rare items to those who want them .. point in case the Gold iPhone 5s.

    If I spend 20,000 buying phones, I should be entitled to receiving a small profit, sparing consumers the need to dash to an Apple store to buy one, and imagine the millions with no access to Apple stores or stores very far from where they live.

    If they're almost impossible to find in the U.S., imagine how difficult they are to get internationally.

    Free market economics and capitalism methinks. If you hate on entrepreneurial businessmen and the defamatory term "scalpers", you need to hate Apple.

    THEY have no reason to charge so much for their products, it's just their greed.

    My iPhone 5s stash :

    Attached Files:

  2. MR1324 macrumors 6502

    Nov 22, 2010
    i am curious....do you end up paying full price on the majority of the phones or do you open up new lines to get advantage of the subsidized price?
  3. sviato macrumors 68020


    Oct 27, 2010
    HR 9038 A
    I wouldn't consider that entrepreneurial but also don't really have an issue with it.
  4. MicroMacTosh thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 6, 2010
    Pay full price, in cash, no contracts.
  5. thecurryman macrumors 6502

    Jun 9, 2012
    I think its a legitimate business. People just get upset when they want something but dont feel like waiting in line or doing the effort of getting it.
  6. justiny Contributor


    Jul 28, 2008
    Fairfield, NJ
  7. bunnicula macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2008
    I liken it to ticket scalping. I don't really care for it and I refuse to pay inflated prices. If you are not breaking any laws? I have no real issue with it, though.
  8. EricByer macrumors member

    Aug 16, 2012
    I don't think these were the responses the OP was looking for.

    That said, I couldn't care less. There's a sucker born every minute.
  9. Makaveliarts macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2010
    I see no problem with it, as long as the markup isn't outrageous.
  10. mcdj, Sep 25, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2013

    mcdj macrumors G3


    Jul 10, 2007
    entrepreneurial |ˌäntrəprəˈno͝orēəl| adjective
    characterized by the taking of financial risks in the hope of profit

    Without fail, the people who balk the loudest at scalpers are those who were unable to obtain the item being scalped at normal prices.

    That said, I have waited online for iPhones and iPads with scalpers from Chinatown (NYC) and they are not a fun bunch. They yammer into their phones constantly, practically yelling. They become belligerent when their position in the line is remotely threatened or compromised in the slightest way. They spit profusely. And they regularly have relief scalpers take their place, causing all kinds of confusion and disgruntlement among other line-standers.

    I even watched as one of these women went ballistic on an Apple employee who refused to sell her another iPad (a couple of years ago when there was a 2 per customer limit). She stormed outside, where waiting for her was another woman, holding bags with at least a dozen iPads. They had circumvented the 2 iPad limit 6 fold, and yet were angry that they were refused more.

    These people basically have zero respect for others in line, or for the process in general.

    I don't have a problem with a decent person with a wad of cash making some money on the side by buying iPhones/iPads, but the Chinatown crews are militant and abrasive and run the operation like a strip mine, and I'd love to see them gone.
  11. EricByer macrumors member

    Aug 16, 2012
    Like there's any financial risk in reselling an in demand product like the latest iPhone. :rolleyes:

    Buying them at full price? Yeah, that'll eat into the bottom line. However, there is still profit. Just not as much.
  12. justiny Contributor


    Jul 28, 2008
    Fairfield, NJ
    What kind of responses do you think the OP is looking for?
  13. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    Scalpers exist because there are suckers willing to pay their inflated prices. If anyone wants to be mad at the fact that scalping happens, you should be mad at the people who buy from them.

    It's just like e-mail spam: at the end of the day, it continues to exist solely because someone out there IS actually clicking on those ads for fake viagra, or sending all their money to a fictional prince in Zimbabwe.

    Scalpers may stink ethically, but someone IS buying from them instead of waiting. This isn't a life-or-death product that you must have to survive. If you want to see scalpers go way, you stay patient and order direct from the source, and get it when you get it. Eventually the problem will solve itself.
  14. Iphone5preorder macrumors 6502a

    Sep 20, 2012
    He wants people to get mad most likely. Hence, putting his wallet in the pics of iPhone..
  15. Makaveliarts macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2010
    Forgot to add -- I would not call a Scalper a "Legitimate Businessman"

    I'd call them someone trying to get a quick profit.
  16. WolfSnap macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2012
    It's the only legit way to do it.. I have two Gold 64's for sale. Full price paid. Otherwise the buyer can be screwed if I stop paying the contract or, whatever.. Bottom line, make sure your seller paid full price!
  17. Iphone5preorder macrumors 6502a

    Sep 20, 2012
    Right. The poll is flawed because there is no option for other. You can't define yourself as either of the two mentioned in the poll.
  18. syd430 Guest

    This is simple economics. It's rent seeking behaviour. Someone else in that line wanted that gold iPhone 5S at it's retail price. You are taking it from that person and selling it to someone else for a markup. The thing is though, you are in front of the person in the line that would have otherwise have bought it for retail price. And because reselling a phone is not illegal, what you are doing perfectly fine. You, as a rational individual, are seeking to maximise your gain. Coincidently, in this case you are gaining at the expense of others (the other person in the line, not the person that agrees to buy the phone from you).

    Heres the kicker, that's not your fault. You are rational agent and you seek to gain (like everyone else, whether they like to admit it or not). The question is not whether or not if this is ethical behaviour, the question is how can we stop people from doing this. This is because, collectively as a society, we don't want these sort of things to occur (it's not a natural law, but a cultural one).

    I think that people are angry at the wrong entity. Scalpers are simply taking advantage of an arbitrage opportunity. You guys really should be angry at at Apple, who know it's problem, for not coming up with further measures to close this arbitrage opportunity.
  19. James717 macrumors regular

    Jul 1, 2013
    ALL business have high markups.

    So if reports that the iphone 5S cost $199 to manufacture, would you say Apple is gouging the customers at $700 plus per phone??

    What are scalpers doing that companies arent?
  20. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    If there's an opportunity to make money legally and the time and effort you put in leaves you satisfied with the profit you acquire per item then go for it.
    I don't see why some people hate that much. If one is willing to pay another individual some money in order not to wait in line for hours or in order not to have to wait weeks to receive a specific item then that's up to them.
    Time is money and to some people time is more valuable while others have plenty of time but no money:D
    Supply and demand.
  21. justiny Contributor


    Jul 28, 2008
    Fairfield, NJ
    It's a douchey-looking wallet, and that wallet won't see one single red cent of my money because I'm not dumb enough to pay a mark-up on a cell phone to someone who has the audacity to throw around phrases like "small profit"...

    That being said, if the OP isn't breaking any laws then what the hell do I care?
  22. itjw macrumors 65816

    Dec 20, 2011
    1000% GOOD FOR YOU

    I applaud your spirit. Thank you for not living off the government, and hope you make every penny you deserve for the hard work.

    You are the reason people can still believe in the free market. If people weren't paying it, you wouldn't be selling it.

    Good for you, and best wishes!
  23. mcdj macrumors G3


    Jul 10, 2007
    The first year Tim Cook took the helm, he released iPads worldwide simultaneously. The Chinatown scalping gangs didn't think about what that would mean, and bought every iPad they could, like previous years, to be sent to China for a quick profit. A couple of days after launch, nobody in China wanted a scalped iPad from the US because they could buy them in China, and all the scalpers had to return their hauls back to Apple. Major waste of time and resources for them. So there can be some risk.
  24. EricByer macrumors member

    Aug 16, 2012
    Good thing this thread is in the present and not several years ago.
  25. Peter K. macrumors 6502a

    Peter K.

    Nov 6, 2012
    SoCal / Philly
    Scalpers Suck (IMO)!

    Personally, I think all middlemen are parasites. From day- & high frequency traders to event ticket scalpers to the OP are representative of all that is wrong with and in the world today. They suck value out of markets for products, which they had no part in creating.

    Yes, I know they (usually) aren't breaking any laws. So what?

    And please, spare me the liquidity excuse!

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