Entertainment trading cards- I love collecting products from movies I like and TV shows I watch like Fringe, the Big Bang Theory, etc. I know that not all show can justify a stand alone product but I would love to see a network based card set for USA. it would work brilliantly with their Characters Unite tag line. It could incorporate shows like Burn Notice, Covert Affairs, White Collar, Suits and others.
Topps Five Star Membership- There is absolutely nothing wrong with Topps wanting to make available a club for its high rollers and to provide them some perks and freebies. The problems I have with it are in the language of the application.
- To say that the club is for Topps most "passionate" collectors is a bit of a slap in the face to many consumers of their product because it equates passion to $'s spent. How do you think that statement makes the guy who buys a box of every baseball product they buy or the life long set builder?
- There is specific language that states that by be accepted into the club you agree to "position Topps in a favorable light". Listen, if I'm spending $10k a year on your product, I am going to say anything I want to, pro or con. Only a company insecure about negative criticism would feel the need to include such language in what is essentially a rewards program.
Collector Entitlement- There is a disturbing trend that seems to exist amongst many collectors that reflects the notion that in some way card manufacturers owe them something above and beyond the contents of the box they purchase. I don't get it.
Social Media Has Changed Everything- Topps and Panini have given away more product via Twitter and Facebook than I have witnessed in the history of the hobby.
Topps Chrome Football- What a cash cow this product is. At a $100 a box you are getting only 4-cards per pack and (1) autograph per box. The appeal of this product is obviously the on-card rookie autographs and more importantly the gamble of the chance at pulling the likes of the top players in the frehsman class like RG3, Luck, Richardson, etc. Few other products can get away with that price tag and just one hit. Others come close but as this product starts to dry up you will begin to see it in the $110 to $120 range. That's a pricey gamble but one in which many collectors appear willing to take.
No Hockey has me Bummed Beyond Belief- I can't even get myself interested in purchasing new hockey products. Upper Deck Series One is an annual favorite of mine but I could care less this year. Donald Fehr, the NHLPA rep is a greedy fool and Commissioner Gary Betteman is an evil midget. Everyone's a loser so far especially the fans.
Leaf and In The Game- Both companies never cease to amaze me with their pack-out configurations and value propositions. There products aren't for everybody but I am glad they are around. They often show collectors that while the big boys say "It can't be done.", that in fact it can. Case in point. For years, collectors have asked for an image database of serial numbered patch cards to help thwart counterfeits. Time and time again we have been told by the likes of Topps, Upper Deck and Panini that it can't be done. Here is proof in the form of Albert Pujols that it can be done. Ichiro has one also.Way to go Brian Gray! So to all the others, don't say we can't, tell the truth and say, "We don't want too."
PSA Collector Resources- Over the last year, Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA/DNA) have been assembling one of the most comprehensive resources for autograph and game used memorabilia collectors. Their latest initiative AutographFacts provides collectors with a wealth of images of authentic exemplars to compare against autograph collectors are considering purchasing. No other enity in the hobby could provide this depth of information and the fact that it is FREE, I believe, really says something about their interests for the hobby. I know they have been caught up in their own issues and errors but this show of good faith is a much need resource for the collecting community. Well done!