CGC vs CBCS
3 3

67 posts in this topic

1 post

I know CBCS has grown and merged with Beckett and they verify unwitnessed signatures... but frankly their customer service is . I know artists like them but in my mind and many others CGC will always be the gold standard. I hope someday CGC can verify signatures without a witness because then CBCS has nothing to compete with. It takes twice as long to get a book back from CBCS. The label is often misprinted or lopsided and it costs more and the people on the phone are impolite if they pick up at all. CGC is far and away better and given a choice I'll never submit my books elsewhere.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3,080 posts

Personally, my experience has been the exact, 180 degree opposite with regards to customer service. Granted i have not interacted with CGC recently, but my comparison still holds true to the last conversations. With the caveat being they were never really "impolite," but rather disinterested. CGC was always cordial, but the i always got the "yeah, but we're your only option" vibe, still like CGC, just wanted to present an alternative point of view. If you don't see me again, I got banned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41,799 posts

I've called CBCS twice. Both times Steve picked up the phone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54,827 posts

CBCS is not a legitimate comic book grading company, and unless Beckett takes some serious steps, starting with a complete overhaul of whomever thinks they're in charge, they never will be.

Which is a shame, because the industry desperately needs legitimate competition, and CBCS was in a perfect position to be that competition, but their serious missteps (the fiasco of the "self-witnessed" yellow label program, their "this case can be opened without anyone being able to tell" scandal, their "top pressers" spinning key books like Avengers #4 on table tops, their lack of basic programs like a registry and a census, etc.) and their petty, petulant, and hostile attitude towards criticism, with their willingness to openly lie about people to justify silencing said criticism, all just demonstrates that they weren't any better than CGC, and, in fact, far worse.

For competition to succeed, they can't merely be equal...they must be, in all ways, superior. That was never true of CBCS, though they had an industry of hopes and good will sent their way to encourage them otherwise.

It didn't work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17,926 posts
45 minutes ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

CBCS is not a legitimate comic book grading company, and unless Beckett takes some serious steps, starting with a complete overhaul of whomever thinks they're in charge, they never will be.

Which is a shame, because the industry desperately needs legitimate competition, and CBCS was in a perfect position to be that competition, but their serious missteps (the fiasco of the "self-witnessed" yellow label program, their "this case can be opened without anyone being able to tell" scandal, their "top pressers" spinning key books like Avengers #4 on table tops, their lack of basic programs like a registry and a census, etc.) and their petty, petulant, and hostile attitude towards criticism, with their willingness to openly lie about people to justify silencing said criticism, all just demonstrates that they weren't any better than CGC, and, in fact, far worse.

For competition to succeed, they can't merely be equal...they must be, in all ways, superior. That was never true of CBCS, though they had an industry of hopes and good will sent their way to encourage them otherwise.

It didn't work.

Agreed.  And their lack of planning and ability to forecast really came back to bite them during their move to Dallas.  If you read their forum or the various 'unofficial' Facebook sites, the natives are more than restless.  They claim that almost their entire grading team made the move, yet their customer service group was completely fractured and is being done remotely by one or two people.  What the heck were they thinking?  The rumor is that Beckett will be picking up customer service in the future, but it seems the transition plan was either nonexistent or went terribly wrong.  It's a big mess, and TATs are suffering badly.

In the meantime, PGX has been gaining market share.  Its customers are unaware of its past, and are attracted to low fees and fast turnarounds.  Most of these customers are new to the grading game, and are coming straight out of social media (which is where all the real action is nowadays).  I don't think anyone could have predicted this, and it's certainly an interesting turn of events given their reputation.

Most of the social media sites say, when the question is asked about grading company selection:

CGC - If you want the highest resale value. Bad case, has newton ring problem.  Excellent customer service.

PGX - If you just want it in a slab quickly. Nice case.

CBCS -  A CGC me-too product with inferior resale value.  Good case.  Degraded customer service (most inquiries don't even get a response right now).

It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54,827 posts
16 minutes ago, Ditch Fahrenheit said:

Agreed.  And their lack of planning and ability to forecast really came back to bite them during their move to Dallas.  If you read their forum or the various 'unofficial' Facebook sites, the natives are more than restless.  They claim that almost their entire grading team made the move, yet their customer service group was completely fractured and is being done remotely by one or two people.  What the heck were they thinking?  The rumor is that Beckett will be picking up customer service in the future, but it seems the transition plan was either nonexistent or went terribly wrong.  It's a big mess, and TATs are suffering badly.

 

16 minutes ago, Ditch Fahrenheit said:

 

CBCS -  A CGC me-too product with inferior resale value.  Good case.  Degraded customer service (most inquiries don't even get a response right now)

This should come as no surprise to anyone watching closely over the last two years. These symptoms manifested themselves particularly through their message board. I wrote a short PM to a person "in customer service" with a user name of "Jake Ellis." I got no response. I wrote back, several days later, casually "wondering" (and, of course, already full well knowing the answer) if that account was an active account. At that point, this "Jake Ellis" person responded with a terse, clipped response, letting me know that the account was active, while completely failing to address the issue I was having.

And remember: this is someone who works in their customer service dept. Ostensibly, someone who is trained to deal with customer concerns and resolve them to the customer's satisfaction, or at least to be able to point the customer to where they should go for followup.

And, of course, their moderators are embarrassments to the hobby, moderating based on their personal feelings, rather than abiding by, and assuring that everyone else abided by, the same set of clear, unambiguous terms of service, which quite obviously was never the case.

"But that's just their message board. What does that have to do with the company itself?" some may ask. Good question, and the answer is this: these things do not happen in a vacuum. You can easily tell the attitudes of the people in charge by the way the people who interact directly with the customers behave. They are a direct reflection of those people in charge. 

These people wouldn't have been able to get away with the things they were had the people in charge not allowed, and, in fact, encouraged them to behave in such a manner. These attitudes don't merely exist on their message board: it's their entire corporate attitude. So, when push came to shove where and when it counted, the integrity, the character, the dedication to customer service even in the face of complaints and criticism...it didn't exist, because it never existed in the first place.

There was no foundation. You had a group of people who liked comics, some of whom were really good at grading comics, but who were completely unskilled and unproven in the jobs they were given, and were chosen solely because Borock liked them personally. That's no way to run a company. Then, sadly, when those people...from message board moderators on up to general managers...had to deal with criticism, they folded like cheap suits, and grew increasingly combative with their customer base. And the most amazing part of it all is that CBCS was started because someone had a bad customer experience with CGC...and they then turned around and did the exact same thing to their customers. That's irony for you.

So, no, the problems they have experienced with this move to Beckett is not at all a surprise. Maybe Beckett can rescue them...but not with current management.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2,363 posts

I like Steve, CBCS, but I sent a query to them four days ago and still no response. I then kept thinking, I'm sure I tried to get this resolved before (been a lot going on), so checked over my sent emails and realized I had sent the same enquiry July last year which I never got a reply to either, so as mentioned here, the customer service is very bad :-(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23,250 posts

I bought a CBCS graded book once. It was a "Conserved" Detective 36. When the book was sent to CCS to subsequently be graded by CGC, they suspected a married bc. I won't make that mistake again.

Edited by Gotham Kid

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17,804 posts

Some of the commentary in this thread should be taken with  a ton of salt.

Though I understand the bitterness of those who were banned from their forums.

Think "bad roommate" syndrome 2c

Edited by Logan510

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11,738 posts
10 minutes ago, Logan510 said:

Some of the commentary in this thread should be taken with  a ton of salt.

Though I understand the bitterness of those who were banned from their forums.

Think "bad roommate" syndrome 2c

Though I am not familiar with what you you are referring to, it is obvious that someone has some serious dislike for the company. You can just feel it oozing from the screen. I don't like threads like this where a 1st time poster comes on with a beef.  In the interest of fair play, I hope this thread dies quickly. Someone post some porn and get this thing locked up ! :baiting: 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
893 posts

Well, at least that wasn't weird.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11,059 posts

I had a lot of behind the scenes experience with CBCS before they opened and during their first 18 months of operation.  Like all start ups, they were running on a razor's edge the first several months but things were slowly normalizing and operations were smoothing out.  Where they ran into problems was in funding.  They grossly underestimated the cost of start up and the cost of continuing operations.  They were unable to implement cohesive business processes and there was a TON of infighting going on.  That lead to an overall breakdown in efficiency and their inability to realize and cost savings as things matured.  Eventually their financial backer refused (or was highly resistant) to put any further money into the operation and they had to modify prices, processes, and TAT.  When they did this I told Steve that unless they made some drastic changes they would be out of business in 5 years... and without Beckett I'm guessing they would have been.

Now we have CBCS 2.0... hopefully that will work out because good competition is good for the market. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54,827 posts
1 hour ago, Stronguy said:

I had a lot of behind the scenes experience with CBCS before they opened and during their first 18 months of operation.  Like all start ups, they were running on a razor's edge the first several months but things were slowly normalizing and operations were smoothing out.  Where they ran into problems was in funding.  They grossly underestimated the cost of start up and the cost of continuing operations.  They were unable to implement cohesive business processes and there was a TON of infighting going on.  That lead to an overall breakdown in efficiency and their inability to realize and cost savings as things matured.  Eventually their financial backer refused (or was highly resistant) to put any further money into the operation and they had to modify prices, processes, and TAT.  When they did this I told Steve that unless they made some drastic changes they would be out of business in 5 years... and without Beckett I'm guessing they would have been.

Now we have CBCS 2.0... hopefully that will work out because good competition is good for the market. 

This does not surprise me at all.

It should have surprised no one paying attention.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54,827 posts
On 8/11/2018 at 11:51 AM, Logan510 said:

Some of the commentary in this thread should be taken with  a ton of salt.

Though I understand the bitterness of those who were banned from their forums.

Think "bad roommate" syndrome 2c

Everything anyone posts should be taken with "a ton of salt"...including yours.

I've been banned from forums before, and I'll be banned again, I'm sure. The banning isn't the cause of the problems. The banning is a result of the problems. 

It's a simple fact of life: people don't like to be criticized, utterly and entirely regardless of the validity (or lack thereof) of that criticism. Those who act in bad faith will do what they can to silence that criticism, up to and including murder. Thankfully, that's not where we have here, but CBCS certainly abuses the tool of banning to silence criticism, and are certainly willing to lie on the record about it where no one can challenge them.

I have a written record of how, why, where, what, and to whom I criticized CBCS. I supported them, recognized the need for them, promoted them, and made an effort to reach out to management in private. The response to that criticism...both public and private...only proved what I, and people like StrongGuy and others, have said: there's no one in charge at CBCS, and the people with authority are WOEFULLY, CARTOONISHLY inadequate to deal with customers. They may have been perfectly suited to whatever job they may have had prior....but they certainly were not, in any way, shape, or form capable of dealing with complaints and criticism from the public, to the point that they became personally offended, which is a cardinal mistake in business. 

Listen...when your forum moderators openly take sides by "liking" posts banning a member...you've got a serious culture and authority problem going on. Moderators are, by definition, supposed to be neutral. But engaging in clearly partisan activity like that, not bothering to maintain even a pretense of impartiality, only proves the point: these folks were anything but neutral, and had (and have) zero business in any positions of responsibility dealing with the public.

Think "not ready for primetime" syndrome.  " 2c "

So, by all means, feel free to attempt to discredit the complaints as "bitter comments from banned members"...we'll see who is more credible in the long run.

Too bad humans have such a perverse tendency to not listen to others until it's far, far too late, and all that's left is "I told you so."

:(

 

Edited by RockMyAmadeus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21,372 posts

But......will Beckett result in tighter/better grading? If not, then it does not really matter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1,029 posts

I have only received 1 group of books from CGC so far, Good experience. Happy with service and grading is what I expected. On the other hand. I submitted to the other company many times. Each time they screwed something up or caused a great inconvenience. Sent 2 of the same modern variants in for grading at the same time. Waited forever to get them back and when I did there was an error on one of the labels. Had to send it back and have a new label made. Also waited a God knows how long for another submission for a problem with their plastic to be fixed. Probably 6 months wait for that. Another group of books just got lost. No one knew where they were. Many e-mails and never got a response. Finally called and they told me the books weren't scheduled to be graded yet because of the tier they were in. I asked what tier they currently had the books under and it was not what I selected and even my submission sheet said otherwise. Person on phone was really confused and said they would look into it and call me back. They eventually did call me back and apologize but many days later. Those are a few experiences. Would I use them again? I'd rather stick my head in a bee hive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5,350 posts

I'll never understand why anyone would pay one penny for a signature series book that was not witnessed.

There are people who made their career in forgeries. 

It's like throwing money away.

Even though I collect very few sig books, that reason alone would keep me away from CBCS.

Edited by I like pie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
3 3