Books you just cant find in the Wild
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3 hours ago, paqart said:

The few data points I have on newsstand rarity come from a combination of Comichron sales estimates and a number of articles I've read on https://rarecomics.wordpress.com/,

Yup. There's the confirmation of what was very obvious.

That site is garbage. The small amount of good information is drowned out by the ocean of misinformation, erroneous assumptions, unbelievably faulty logic, etc.

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27 minutes ago, Lazyboy said:

Yup. There's the confirmation of what was very obvious.

That site is garbage. The small amount of good information is drowned out by the ocean of misinformation, erroneous assumptions, unbelievably faulty logic, etc.

Sad but true.

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 What? You guys aren't buying the anonymous noob's anecdotal info with zero corroborating evidence? Shame on you. (tsk) I mean it must be true, because he said so.

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, Second Blight said:

Andrew Paquette , go play somewhere else.

If "paqart" is Andrew Paquette, he's in a position to not just know a lot of this, but to have documentation for it, so why on earth he's resisting providing any (no, not just "pay stubs from 1994") AND citing the disreputable "rarecomics" blog is beyond me. He ought to know better, much better.

And he was born in 1965, so there's not much chance for him to have been "working in a comics store in the 70s" except in his early teens, at which point, he wouldn't have had the level of responsibility or the resources to understand the market in any meaningful way, barring some strange Sheldon Cooper-level situation.

Edited by RockMyAmadeus

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1 hour ago, Jeffro™ said:

 What? You guys aren't buying the anonymous noob's anecdotal info with zero corroborating evidence? Shame on you. (tsk) I mean it must be true, because he said so.

He's not really anonymous. Unfortunately, neither is he really knowledgeable about his chosen subject matter. :frown:

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1 hour ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

"working in a comics store in the 70s"

I did work in a comic store named Comics and Fantasies starting in around 1977, when I was twelve. I was hired so that I would stop taking business from the guy who hired me. At the time, local shops would hire me to grade collections they were thinking of buying, such as when Recycle Books brought me in to grade and price out a full collection of Spider-Man and Fantastic Four. Back then, I spent a lot of my time memorizing the price guide, which I did every year. I was a kid but had an unusually good memory and ability to grade and value comics.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

No doubt. But his comments are about titles in general, not specifically newsstand distribution, so that doesn't apply here.

It therefore applies to all comics. You were making an argument that a title wouldn't be continued if it was unprofitable. Mark says that Marvel and DC did that frequently. So that would make you wrong if Mark is right, and it would be tough to find someone more knowledgeable about these things than Mark. As for the newsstand/direct split and the idea that they would allow a title in general to be unprofitable but not the newsstand variant of the same title, I don't follow that logic.

Edited by paqart

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3 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

The Direct market started in 1973/1974, by Phil Sueling.

Funny you should mention that. I spotted this also, as Seuling was a big topic of conversation at the store I worked at in 1977. The reason? The direct market he'd created, and with it, the 60% discount we got at the store and all the lovely back issues we didn't have to return. The reason I don't care is that this has no meaningful impact on the conclusion that market availability of newsstand editions decreases over time, until the point they are next to impossible to find.

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19 minutes ago, Lazyboy said:

He's not really anonymous. Unfortunately, neither is he really knowledgeable about his chosen subject matter.

Did I make any claim on this? I sure don't remember doing so. I know quite a lot of things on a lot of subjects thanks to an interesting career that has spanned over 30 years. There are also a lot of things I don't know. One thing that is totally new to me is every single thing that has happened in comics since around 1996. That said, my impression is that I am allowed to read about comics now that my interest is rekindled, and to perform some analyses based on the few data points I've been able to find, without juvenile barbs such as this from you. I am even allowed to talk to my friends in the comic book industry from time to time, and to listen to their answers to questions, some of which I've shared here. As an ambassador of this hobby, I can't recommend the job you are doing.

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2 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

why on earth he's resisting providing any

Do you have any idea the effort it takes to go rooting through piles of papers from almost thirty years ago just to find something that will convince a total stranger what a normal page rate was back in 1994? Do you realize how many other ways there are to get similar data? As for other rates, no, there is no documentation of that because the information was all conveyed verbally. That happens sometimes, particularly before the Internet age. True, the most recent salary data was given to me last week by someone at NYCC but I doubt he'd appreciate my mentioning his name here in connection with it. 

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1 hour ago, paqart said:
6 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

No doubt. But his comments are about titles in general, not specifically newsstand distribution, so that doesn't apply here.

It therefore applies to all comics. You were making an argument that a title wouldn't be continued if it was unprofitable. Mark says that Marvel and DC did that frequently. So that would make you wrong if Mark is right, and it would be tough to find someone more knowledgeable about these things than Mark. As for the newsstand/direct split and the idea that they would allow a title in general to be unprofitable but not the newsstand variant of the same title, I don't follow that logic.

That is not an accurate characterization of my argument. Maybe this will clarify: the discussion is about newsstand distribution, not overall sales. ME talking about overall sales doesn't have anything to do with newsstand distribution other than in very general terms, and if you'd specifically asked him about newsstand distribution, I imagine his answer would either have bee different, or he would have told you he didn't know.

In other words, you're trying to make an apples to rock lobsters comparison.

I wasn't making an argument that a title wouldn't be continued if it was unprofitable: I am making any argument that the method of distribution wouldn't be continued if it was unprofitable, which ultimately proved to be the case for Marvel in 2013 and DC in 2017.

Edited by RockMyAmadeus

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57 minutes ago, paqart said:

Do you have any idea the effort it takes to go rooting through piles of papers from almost thirty years ago just to find something that will convince a total stranger what a normal page rate was back in 1994? Do you realize how many other ways there are to get similar data? As for other rates, no, there is no documentation of that because the information was all conveyed verbally. That happens sometimes, particularly before the Internet age. True, the most recent salary data was given to me last week by someone at NYCC but I doubt he'd appreciate my mentioning his name here in connection with it. 

I'm not asking you for specific documentation. I'm just asking for any documentation you may have to corroborate your information.

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1 hour ago, paqart said:

Funny you should mention that. I spotted this also, as Seuling was a big topic of conversation at the store I worked at in 1977. The reason? The direct market he'd created, and with it, the 60% discount we got at the store and all the lovely back issues we didn't have to return. The reason I don't care is that this has no meaningful impact on the conclusion that market availability of newsstand editions decreases over time, until the point they are next to impossible to find.

There are others. You asked for an example of errors on the "rarecomics" blog, and I provided one. That it doesn't have to do with this specific discussion isn't relevant.

Another "error" is that it states, in multiple places, that Jon McClure "discovered" the 30 and 35 cent Marvels. He did not.

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2 minutes ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

Another "error" is that it states, in multiple places, that Jon McClure "discovered" the 30 and 35 cent Marvels. He did not.

Okay, again this is something that strikes me as not relevant and also like something that might have some debate surrounding it, kind of like the question of who created Spider-Man? With those kinds of questions, I am not inclined to describe something as an error. Instead, it is a difference of opinion. On this specific issue, without knowing any more than what you wrote, I doubt anyone could say with certainty who "discovered" to variants you are talking about, since many people could have noticed it simultaneously. You could add qualifiers, like, "the first to bring it to the attention of collectors," but even then there could be some debate.

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16 minutes ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

for any documentation you may have

Maybe I'm misunderstanding you but my impression is that you wanted documentation for the creative costs associated with making a comic. If that is all you want, there are other ways to estimate this, like, for instance, calling up some pros and asking what their rates are. I did that recently at  a local convention and two well-known solid inkers told me they charge $100 and $150/pg, respectively. My rates in 1994, or those of the people I knew then could be found somewhere else in some kind of document, but the document would be based on someone like me answering a question, not providing pay stubs.

Edited by paqart

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Just now, paqart said:

Okay, again this is something that strikes me as not relevant and also like something that might have some debate surrounding it, kind of like the question of who created Spider-Man? With those kinds of questions, I am not inclined to describe something as an error. Instead, it is a difference of opinion. On this specific issue, without knowing any more than what you wrote, I doubt anyone could say with certainty who "discovered" to variants you are talking about, since many people could have noticed it simultaneously. You could add qualifiers, like, "the first to bring it to the attention of collectors," but even then there could be some debate.

Again: you asked for examples of things which are inaccurate, and I have provided them to you. The principle remains: if you won't get the easy, obvious things accurate...why should you be trusted to get the more complex things accurate, too...?

It is no "difference of opinion." The 30 and 35 cent Marvels started appearing in the OPG in 1978...20 years before McClure claims to have "discovered" them. You cannot claim to have "discovered" something if it wasn't only known, but documented years before you.

And the word "error" is in quotes on purpose. It's not an error. It's a false claim of credit. 

Moving the goalposts doesn't validate the argument.

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1 minute ago, paqart said:

Maybe I'm misunderstanding you but my impression is that you wanted documentation for the creative costs associated with making a comic...

I have asked you for documentation of any of the claims you have made. 

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9 minutes ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

You cannot claim to have "discovered" something if it wasn't only known, but documented years before you

Actually, you're wrong there. We are taught that Columbus discovered America, but the native Americans pre-dated their discovery by a minimum of hundreds of years. They, however, migrated from Asia and displaced other people, who arguably also "discovered" the place. Marvel execs certainly knew of the price variants before Overstreet but did they "discover" it, not according to you. As for this other guy, and btw, I know nothing about this and couldn't care less either, but it is easy for me to picture a situation where Overstreet notices it in his price guide but it doesn't get any traction. Then, some twenty years later, someone else "discovers" it and suddenly the price skyrockets.

This reminds me of my one personal encounter with Bob Overstreet. I had found an anti-communist giveaway from the fifties or sixties titled "Korea my Home." At the time, it was not mentioned in the guide. Similar comic book format propaganda was listed for prices in the $900-$2700 range. I brought it to Overstreet at a convention in NYC. He said that until it sold, it had no value, then suggested I sell it to his friend, Phil Levine. Levine bought it from me for $45, primarily because I had no idea how to sell something not listed in the guide. At the end of the year, the new guide came out, the comic was listed there as extremely rare and with a high price (I think it was over $1k, but not sure). The point is that in that situation, Levine "discovered" it, though I'm the guy who found it in the back of a filing cabinet. Regardless, for pricing, Levine did discover it at the $1k price level because that's what he sold it for.

Edited by paqart

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