Now I've enjoyed trading with other collectors via the internet numerous times. It's a fun little thing to do and the generosity some people have can really blow your mind.
However, I do have rules and regulations to abide by whenever I trade that I'm going to be sharing with you all for the first time in this blog's existence. Please note that most of these are for rules with people I'm trading with for the first time.
1). Do some prior research on the other person.
My first trade with somebody on the blogosphere (that wasn't in person) was in 2013 when I first reached out to The Lost Collector. You know how long I was lurking in the shadows to confirm that he was a trustworthy fellow? I was lurking and viewing his blog for two whole years before I contacted him about a trade.
And while I don't usually wait two years to confirm that a certain collector is legit, I'd just like to drive the point home that I do do extensive background searches on people before doing anything.
If I agree to a trade with you when you contact me, it's most likely because I've already done background checks on you in the past and put you in the "probably" category before our negotiations began. A notable example would be Mark Hoyle who I knew traded frequently with The Lost Collector and Red Sox Fan In Nebraska (another blogger I trust). And there was also Bob Walk The Plank who I saw trade with people like Play At The Plate (yet another blogger I trust) & The Lost Collector before me.
If you're new and have no track record for me to go on, then sorry but the chances me being the first name on your "list of trades made" are zero-to-none. I'm not going to risk being a guinea pig.
2). Must be over 18.
There is a reason why the forums over at places like Beckett have a strict age policy. Some people may call it age discrimination but I don't care, kids go to the kids table.
3). I receive your address first.
Those of you who have traded with me will know that I always ask for your address first and that you'll often have to ask me for my address since I will not just give it to you.
There is a reason for that. I'm the paranoid freak who believes that he is giving away something very important when he engages in a trade. No not the cards (which are really replaceable when you really think about it), but my personal information. I'm the type of guy who will lie about when my birthday is or what part of town I'm currently living in when we're having a casual conversation. I'd rather be on the safe side and know I only lost out on some useless cards I didn't want.
On a sidenote. I'm sure a few of you guys out there have my address. If anybody (and I mean anybody) asks for it, DON'T give it to them without asking for my permission first. I don't care if it's Night Owl from the center of the blogosphere or jolly ole St. Wes, it should really go without saying but, you should never give away another person's personal information. If you do I will hunt you down and prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law.
4). My Zippy Zappings are like my trust, you need to earn them.
So far I've turned something as simple as trading into something needlessly serious, but too bad we live in a post 9-11 world so deal with it.
I'm sure many of you guys know how hard it is to gain trust and just how easy it is lose it as well. If I send you a Zippy Zapping, it's not just a random assortment of cards. It's a sign that I trust you enough that I'd actually trade with you again. But do not take that for granted.
A while back I had somebody who I never traded with actually ask me to send them a Zippy Zapping. I never responded to that person (who later turned out to be a scammer) and never will. You must earn it, and asking for it is a great way to ensure that you will never receive it for as long as you live.
5). Leave no trail behind.
Like most people I use recycled bubble mailers to send packages. However, most people will probably notice that I tend to completely destroy or cross out the addresses that used to be on the mailer. I imagine that most of the mailers I send out will be used by others, but unfortunately I also have to imagine that others don't take the time to completely destroy the addresses listed on it and just do something minimal like put a piece of paper over it with the new addresses on top. Looking at you, Tom and Oscar. Now I realize that many of us are far too busy to do such a thing, but out of etiquette I always make sure to cross out all addresses before reusing mailers. You never know where that mailer with a vital piece of your personal information is going to next.
Also yes, I frequently delete emails with addresses in them. Hence why I sometimes ask you guys for your addresses again.
There are a few more but these are the big ones.
These aren't how I expect people to trade online. These are just guidelines and procedures I've set up so I can ensure the best odds of having a hassle-free trade with trustworthy people for the foreseeable future. I try to make every transaction that happens between myself and another collector as painless and seamless as possible. Most of the time they work out, the rest of the time I choose to ignore emails when I foresee that the headaches aren't worth it.
Sorry for this largely negative post. Anybody who knows me in real life will tell you that I'm one of those cynical assholes who live by the code "Trust No One" and while I present myself as having this relatively happy/positive persona on here, that part of me permeates how I go about doing trades and sending out Zippy Zaps.
Oh and Matt, thanks for Sanchez auto and Nomo relic.
As always thanks for stopping by and take care :).