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   All Posts (Khamûl)


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Re: Misprint?
Shirrif
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I think this touches on a wider issue of collectable condition, & in particular, in Tolkien book collecting.

Trotter, people like them (& buy them) because they tell something (or at least they might suggest this, to some buyers) about the process of book production. I don't suppose they say much to those familiar with the processes involved i.e. someone who has worked in the printing industry. But they reveal, in part, something of the marvel (mostly imagined, no doubt, in the eyes of the collector) of the process of printing.

Of course, by definition, most of these are unique; but I wouldn't like them to start attracting great interest, as I personally like being able to pick them up for cheap --best keeping it that way, for my sake, & for others who like such things.

Either way, in Tolkien book collecting (& I guess collecting of modern first editions generally) flawed books (misprints, binding faults, pages folded in printing process, previous ownership marks, bookplates, inscriptions, marginalia etc) are fairly looked down upon; unfairly I think. Come a certain age, books with inscriptions & the like can be (should be!) of great interest.

BH

Posted on: 2011/1/9 7:39
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You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: Recent Tolkien events
Shirrif
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Back onto the market? Accept those items (those real gems we spoke of...) that you're giving to me? You did say you'd be happy giving that Silmarillion, and that other item we do not speak about publically, to me... I'm sure that's what you said...

BH

Posted on: 2011/1/9 7:25
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You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: Super Deluxe values
Shirrif
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I agree with all of that Jeremy!

BH

Posted on: 2011/1/2 10:52
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You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: Super Deluxe values
Shirrif
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Beren, nice points, but...

In the case of a house, the estimate given by an 'expert' (a surveyor in the UK, or perhaps an estate agent) is simply based on the market at that time. It is really just a comparison of your house (i.e. its condition, & possibly some other factors) to similar houses; invariably the same style of house, in the same area --& taking into account historical sales & (more importantly) recent sales.

The surveyor doesn't just pluck a number out of thin air. Yes, they may base some aspect of the value on prediction (e.g. the surveyor believes that prices are, despite the downturn, holding up well --even this is drawing largely on knowledge & experience), but most is simply comparison.

So, to disagree with alpingloin, & agree with yourself, provided the 'expert' is indeed an expert, & the estimate is a good one, a "million dollar house" really should realise about this price --unless conditions are highly fluctuant, or unpredictable.

However, you state: when it comes to selling books at their true value that is a completely different issue.; & when it comes to books, especially expensive ones it all comes to finding a buyer - timing is probably everything.

How is selling a house & a book any different? With house selling surely "finding a buyer" & "timing" are just the same as in book selling? I fail to see how the two markets differ markedly or what marks out book selling as so unique.

You also state: ebay and abebooks are very bad parameters to find out the value of a book. Only rarity, state of the book and demand can tell us the real value. So what market should we gauge price, or price range from? You seem to be alluding to some 'true' value that items should carry, but which isn't readily available or known.

(Explain yourself! )

My real disagreement with the market will reveal the value model is simply this: if a book fails to sell at auction, this does not, in my opinion, mean it is literally worthless; either generally, or at the time of the auction. Therefore the market does not (always) determine value/worth.

Ultimately, I agree with your value range model alpingloin. (Your collecting method is imminently sensible too!). I don't think anyone thinks a single value can possibly be applied to a given item. And laurel, how right you are about prices. If 'true' values were revealed, we would have no underpaying, or overpaying --& frankly no book market (in its present form) at all. That would be no fun indeed...

BH

Posted on: 2011/1/2 10:20
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You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: Super Deluxe values
Shirrif
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A long reply to a previous long reply, deserves, well, another long reply! I agree with most of what you say too. A couple of issues though.

If [current] "market value" is what someone is willing to pay at a given time and place, then this term is without useful meaing, & worthless as a term for discussion, as so defined (altho' I will discuss it!); as this price can be (with very high upper limits only) absolutely anything! Any item could realise literally nothing on eBay under individual circumstances relating to the particular listing.

Also, to pick you up another point, you state: Whatever the case, if a book sells for a given price, then that it what it was worth at that time, to that audience. This, in my opinion, is incorrect.

Example: You put up one of your penny-start auctions. Bidder A knows he/she would happily pay £200, has no time for any eBay bidding nonsense (& in any case is away working, without access to their computer until after the auction will end), & puts their maximum (& their opinion of worth in this case) bid in --£200. With no other bidders the auction sits at £0.01 (the starting price). Bidder B, and another Bidder (C) throw in various bids, pushing the price up to £50. The auction ends. Bidder A pays £50 for the item.

This book is acquired for less than what the bidder (the winning bidder: Bidder A) thought it was worth. In all likelyhood an auction is always, by definition, going to end at a price that one bidder was willing to pay (either exactly i.e. they just won the item over another bidder) or (more likely) for less than what they were willing to pay --hence the attraction of this format. So the final price is not what someone thought it was worth (at the time) --it is somewhere between this, and what the next nearest bidder thought it was worth.

My point really is, that by bidding in auctions (assuming the bidder genuinely puts in their maximum, and ignoring for now bidding 'tactics'), the buyer is more than likely, if they stand any chance of winning at all (i.e. assuming their valuation is not seriously under the valuation of others), to acquire the item for less than their own valuation.

With Buy-It-Now this can still happen of course. The item price may be below the buyers estimate and they may snap it up. But assuming the Buy-It-Now price is really what the seller would want ideally, and they are also allowing Best Offer, then the buyer can only really hit the seller with what they're willing to pay, without the safety net of knowing what other bidders value the item at. Although, in reality, you do get to see other failed offers. With this format it is more about what the bidder & the seller think of the value (and nobody else), rather than what bidders only think. I suspect this is the crux of the matter --& what you truly mean by "market value". What the buyers think & not the sellers.

As for the penny-start listing working (& D. Miller agreeing "with this approach"); understandably sellers are going to favour the method which yields the best price for them --this goes without saying. However, this has nothing in particular to do with value or worth, & far more to do with preferred bidding habits --even when these make little sense.

You could have a Deluxe CoH at Buy-It-Now £250 & have no takers on a seven day auction; relist it as £0.01 start, no reserve, and watch the winning bidder PayPal you, say, £275. The very fact that this can happen is all to do with eBay bidding madness!, and not value. Why didn't the eventual winner, in this example, buy the item at £250? Maybe they missed it!; but, more than likely, they wanted the opportunity to (possibly) acquire the item for less than their own valuation of the item --& in the end, caught up in the bidding madness (& having not just punched in their maximum '£200' & leaving it), they end up paying more. Maybe they thought it was worth £275 in the first place...

BH

Posted on: 2011/1/1 15:35
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You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...



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