eBay Idiot of the Week: The Hot Pack Hocker
At first glance there doesn't appear to be anything wrong with this listing; it's just another person selling a supposed “Hot Pack" online. Even though the majority of collectors unanimously dislike the notion of “hot packs" in general, let's leave that debate for another day. My issue with this auction is not the fact that the seller is selling a “hot pack," it's that he ISN'T actually selling a “hot pack."
A “hot pack" is typically the one or two packs per box that contains a “hit," the “hit" being an autograph or memorabilia card. All the other packs are considered “base" packs. In the 2010 Sweet Spot Football set the seller is advertising, every pack includes at least a jersey (memorabilia) card. Out of six packs per box (each pack including one “hit"), there are two autographs and four jersey cards, the jersey cards being the least desirable. So even though the seller is within his rights to guarantee a “hit," the average collector is led to infer that the “hot" pack has an actual chance at containing an autographed card.
My suspicions led to me to check the seller's feedback history and I uncovered an interesting trend in sales. My conclusion is that the seller originally attempted to sell the jersey cards themselves, only to realize that they sold for next to nothing:
So the seller marketed the same jersey packs as “Hot Packs" and increased the price of sale by a significant margin:
If you take a look at the seller's recent sales you will notice he has sold a lot of the 2010 Sweet Spot autographed cards individually, but he pretty much stopped selling the jersey cards. I suspect he is weighing the packs (the autograph packs weigh noticeably more than the jersey packs) and opening up the two autographed packs himself, then auctioning off the remaining four jersey packs as “Hot Packs" and luring collectors into thinking they have a chance to pull an autograph.
Even though this guy has a great feedback rating overall, he has 29 neutral or negative feedback scores in the past year and several have to do 2010 Sweet Spot.
And with that I rest my case, stay tuned for next week's eBay Idiot of the week!