An Analysis of Marty Goldberg's CGE 2001 Editorial

By Ward Shrake

Notes from the author of this analysis: If I sound like a bully by speaking my mind, so be it.  I won't defend myself much, except to say that as a general rule, I try to "live and let live".  I only attack someone when I feel that I or my friends have been attacked first, with little or no cause.  I try hard to progressively use only the amount of verbal force necessary to get my points across.  Nor will I mock those whose intelligence level is legitimately below some arbitrary point, just to be doing it.  On the contrary, I have a deep respect for those who have limited abilities but make the most of them.  But certain things just rub me the wrong way, and given enough time and repetition, end up torquing me off badly.  This is one of those times.  I have little patience for people who attack others without cause, or who try to sell con-jobs to the unwary.  Writing an editorial which slams volunteers for allegedly not doing enough underpaid or flat-out free work to satisfy ingrates... well, Marty had this coming.

 

Full text of Marty's original article,
reprinted verbatim and in its entirety
Ward Shrake's personal commentary

Classic Gaming Expo Exclusive Games: An Editorial

Reselling CGE exclusively released games - good or bad?

-         by Marty "Retro Rogue" Goldberg

Title; rather self-explanatory.
As with the previous Classic Gaming Expo's, Already the author is on very shaky grounds in terms of bad assumptions.  The author's article discusses an event in 2001.  The event itself has only existed since 1998.  Simple math shows that in reality, there were only three "previous" shows held before CGE 2001 (the first one wasn't even called "CGE"; it was the "World of Atari '98".  The name "CGE" or "Classic Gaming Expo" began in 1999.).  The show organizer's web site openly said the 2001 year was a learn-as-you-do-it type experiment, as were each of the previous years.  The organizers openly admitted to learning from each year and improving the show through what they learned, at the next event.  So bear in mind that despite any such impression sold here, that there are no longstanding traditions that go back for many years or even decades.
the highlight to many people are the release of exclusive games.

This is a very dangerous over-simplification.  While it is true that some people and perhaps even "many" do enjoy this single aspect of the show, it is only one part of a larger experience.  There are many other things happening at these events.  We are all individuals, with differing tastes and values.  Therefore all of the events could potentially be called "the highlight" of the show to any given individual.

I feel it is a shame, for instance, to so easily dismiss the talks given by many industry professionals.  To focus only on the product, while ignoring the people responsible for making and/or distributing the products, dehumanizes the process.  Note that not one homebrewer or classic game programmer is mentioned by name, anywhere in his text.

Where in this allegedly "even-handed" text is any mention given to the many other attractions offered at CGE?  In a truly balanced article, these other event activities would have been mentioned and explained, giving them at least a brief paragraph or two of space.  The author's failure to do so makes his alleged point seem much more weighty in comparison.  That's tabloid-style journalism, at best.

Limiting the article's discussion to CGE only was another such attempt to sell an unbalanced text as "even-handed".  No mention is ever made here, to any other methods of game distribution, including ones that prove his point to be invalid (such as after-show Internet ROM downloads or the creation of authorized third-party copies of the game).

Every year, some individual takes the time to produce and release new cartridges for many of your favorite old systems.

The entire premise the author is basing his opinions on is hopelessly flawed.  I have to very seriously question both the word choices made, and the overall impressions they give any unwitting reader that does not know any better.

Consider this carefully: what about an editorial written to complain that every one-of-a-kind prototype should be found in thrift stores all over the country, instead of just at one place?  What about an editorial complaining that it is unfair to limit the finding of long-abandoned one-of-a-kind prototype games only in one country: why not worldwide?

Why are those ideas any stupider than the idea that it is a major problem that some games are released in small quantities, at only one annual event held for hobbyists?

It is amazing to me, how much misleading baloney he packed into one twenty-word sentence.  For instance:

"Some individual"?  As I recall, Activision was formed by former Atari programmers who felt it necessary that they be named, very prominently, in regards to their creations.  How humiliating, to be dehumanized in such a casual way?  Is it any wonder this editorial offended so many people?

"Every year"?  Again, keep in mind that we are really only discussing three previous years, plus the event in question.

"Many"?  Huh?  How many games are we talking about, total, that were ever released at any video gaming event first, even if they were later released by a second means?  Are we talking about ten games, twenty, fifty, or more?  Of those games, released first at ANY gaming event, how many of those NEVER found a second outlet or way into the public's hands?  Probably ten percent of the total, and maybe not even that many.  How many of those few were ONLY released as "exclusives" through CGE?  One, two?

Let's face it; the author is creating a problem where none really exists.  And he's trying to tell us it is widespread.  He isn't thinking clearly, or he is trying to pull a con job on us.

If you go just by the author's title, only a small handful of games are even eligible to fall under this lame editorial's discussion?  To be honest, I'm not sure I can think of one game that truly fits his actual description?  Can you?

If you say the title itself is in some way not an accurate description of the problem, then the entire premise of his article must logically be thrown out as flawed.  If you say the article's content conflicts with the title, it gives the very strong impression the author is not thinking clearly, or that he is intentionally trying to deceive us with double-talk.

Last but not least: the vast majority of carts released at CGE have been for one system... not "many" (the Atari 2600).  Any post-publication revisionism aside, it is simply untrue to say that "many of your favorite old systems" get cartridges (plural) released for them "every year".  There is an occasional release for something like the ColecoVision or the Odyssey2 or some other system. Occasionally, and not as a general rule.  Some consoles have never seen any new releases, prototype or otherwise, at any event.  Some primitive tribes count using "one, two, three, many"... so does this supposedly rational, supposedly adult editorial.

Everything the author said here is misleading.  Some of it is genuinely insulting.  None of his premises can logically be used as the foundation for claiming there even really is a problem, let alone going from that to offering a solution.

These new games often consist "Often"?  How can you have part of something happening "often" when the whole thing only happens once in awhile?
of brand new, homebrew games, Oh really?  That is indeed news to me.  I apparently had the mistaken impression that a totally-written-from-scratch homebrew game was a rare thing indeed, and that there are far more games that are simply variants of existing games, with something like the graphics altered.  Silly me.
or in many cases A logical contradiction to what he just said; how can you have "often" competing with "many" in the same sentence?  One quantity under discussion must be more than another, or they are equal. They can't both claim top billing?  More proof that this man's thinking is unsound and unclear.
are releases of old prototype games that were never officially released. Now we are talking... this is arguably more true than the rest of what he said, earlier in this sentence.  There are more unfinished prototypes than 100% new games that were written back when, but never published.  There are more simple graphics hacks than 100% new games.  Some are great finds and fun to play.  Others are just things to remind us that eras end, and time moves on.  Some of the things that are released should be weighed as being of more value than others, in gameplay or for history's sake.  And none of them should cause this level of controversy; the author seems to forget that this is a hobby, after all. 
Many of these people Sigh.  Here we go again, with misleading overstatements.
actually take the time to try and make the releases as authentic as possible, going so far as to create authentic looking packaging and manuals to add to the experience. Oh baloney.  This is something that is just now appearing, and is still very much the exception rather than the rule.  Have even five such games been made so far?  Or ten?
Reasonably priced at $30 and up,

Whoa, whoa, whoa!  Slow down there, Sparky!

Folks, this has got to be my personal favorite sentence, for overstating his case, introducing personal bias, and asking readers to buy into a seriously flawed bad assumption, which he then uses as flimsy support for a badly flawed argument.

It is always critical to carefully examine the foundations of an argument, before allowing the debate to continue.  Always!  If the foundation idea is not sound, the debate is already over.  It makes no sense to argue against an unproven concept!

Whose point of view are we looking at to decide if a cart is priced "reasonably" if it normally sells for $30 each now?

To the buyer, certainly this is within what they are used to paying for mass-produced industry-made goods.  But the HUGE amount of man hours necessary to make even one item by hand, makes each and every cart sold a massive drain on the time and finances of any person making any homebrew cart.  If you had to pay for the hundreds of hours it took to write the game, instead of simply paying for the parts it took to make one copy of it, your cost per cart would routinely be thousands of dollars per cart!

It is a fact -- an undeniable fact -- that each and every cart sold for $30 is a token fee, and NOT a fair price to these sellers.  Every cart sold this way is a guaranteed LOSS to a person making them by hand!  The only way to make a profit at that price point is to sell tens or hundreds of thousands of them, after having them mass-produced by cheap laborers.

Every homebrewer is DONATING very LARGE amounts of his or her own personal resources, to do favors for people that they may or may not even know.  Failure to recognize this fact makes these people feel VERY unappreciated, just as the programmers who founded Activision felt like they were not being fairly rewarded for their contributions, even though they were then receiving 100's of times more money.

The author has now progressed beyond dehumanizing the people who make these carts by failing to name even one of them, to going beyond that, and saying their time is of no value to others.  That they are, basically, a slave with no other important events going on in their personal lives, that must freely give anything asked of them, without any question or complaint, for no better reason than "but I want it".  Isn't this the same pointless argument that spoiled kids give parents?

Tim Snider, the author of Venture II which was going to be a "CGE exclusive" at one point, said publicly on Usenet before CGE 2001 that it took him a full month of his free time to hand-make twenty wooden treasure boxes, to hold the twenty copies of the game he was planning on giving away for a token fee, during the show.  Did most people care at all, that he'd given others a month of his life for free?  No, most did not.  Many told him to get back to work, and make more.  And because of their bad attitudes, he cancelled the plans he had made.  As he should have; it is his life to spend any way he pleases.  Why is that concept so hard to grasp?

Would any of you give up a month of your time to strangers?  If so, show me the results: where are the games you made for the rest of us to enjoy?  Where are this author's "100% new" games? (If you won't put up, then simply shut up!)

people wait long hours in line at CGE booths to be able to buy these games. Event organizers publicly stated soon after CGE 2001 that they would do their best to avoid any such lines, in all future shows.  So why is this mentioned, as if it would recur?
The upside is that people get to walk away with not only the memory of attending CGE, This is about as close as the author comes to admitting that there are many other positive aspects of the event.  And I'm sorry, but it just isn't enough to claim this is journalism.
but a new "classic" game they can take home and play. True, but in more cases than not, the game's authors made it perfectly clear they'd allow emulator / ROM image use of their game code, after the show (in some cases, such as Tim Snider's aborted release of a Venture variant for the Atari 2600 at the 2001 show, he stated clearly and up front that would be the case. Yet few people listened to that?).
They also know that they're walking away with an exclusive. In every other way, the author seems to be building a case proving that "exclusives" are a bad thing, which can only lead to hard feelings and so on.  Yet here he speaks as if they were a good thing?  You simply can't have it both ways.
Most of these cartridges are only being released at CGE,

This is not true, or is at best mostly misleading.

"Exclusive" game releases at shows are a relatively recent thing, no matter what the author tries to tell you otherwise.

As stated here before, many if not most game authors allow both downloads of ROM image code after the show, and for third parties such as Randy Crihfield of "Hozer Video" to make an unlimited amount of authorized physical copies of the game, after the show.  These two things make it unrealistic to argue that a person cannot obtain or play the game, if they do not attend the show and buy the "exclusive" version.

The author could be speaking not of the game, per se, but of the packaging and label variations that appear only at one show or another, or through some other limited means.  To which I would reply, "grow up".  The entire basis that makes the collecting hobby what it is, is the idea that some things were made in smaller numbers than others, and that makes them harder to find, which makes the hunt more challenging.  It also means that not everyone will be able to obtain them.

and in limited amounts.

Without exception, every physical item manufactured on this Earth is made in a finite and therefore "limited" amount.  It is impossible to make an infinite number of anything, mass produced or made by hand.  Each person or group that makes any item, has a firm upper limit on resources: their time, their finances, and their motivation, among others.

That is a Law of Nature, not a decision of homebrew game programmers.  It is not open to any form of negotiation.  We cannot change it, and neither can you.  You can wish it were not true, but you'll only waste time.  Accept it.  Deal with it.

Combat II for example had a limited run of 200 copies for CGE goers to buy, 9 for press, 1 for Retrodesign, and another 50 for after CGE but only outside of North America.

Which only means that number is where they ran out of time, money, and personal motivation, and discontinued making copies of the items.  If you are not paying their full expenses, you have no right to question where they set their own limits.

The author intentionally ignores the fact that this number is also a clear indication that the market for the end item is very small, globally speaking.  The market for the Pet Rock was much larger than this, and that was considered a mere fad.

As I recall, the 200 copies did NOT sell out at this event with "1100+ attendees," which just goes to show that the sellers had set realistic limitations.

What this basically meant was if you're in the US, your chances were slim unless you were able to make it to CGE and even then, be able to get ahead of 199 other people at an event that drew 1100+ attendees. So?  The author of this article expects all homebrewers to make financial martyrs of themselves, apparently, in a vain attempt to satisfy the 900 "have nots" in this scenario.  Why?  Then they would not be around later for next year's show?  It is a Law of Nature, to not over-supply and waste valuable resources in the process.  Some go without.  So?  That is life.
What this created was an immediate and artificial rarity rating,

Huh?  What the (bleep)?  He just reversed himself, while claiming to still be supporting his original premise?  He isn't.

How is it logical to have just said, moments ago, that 900 out of 1,100 people will not get something -- which he correctly implies makes their copy all the more potentially valuable to the 200 that do get one -- but then turns around and says it is "artificial" to consider it rare?  Talk about being two-faced?

This, and thinking like it, invalidates his entire argument (if indeed he ever made a single valid point in his editorial) .

The primary, inescapable, unchangeable fact the author fails to be able to grasp -- or he simply refuses to accept -- are that creation number self-limits were not set by the maker's random whims, but by the limits IMPOSED ON THE MAKERS by the realities of their daily existence within a capitalist marketplace.  It is like saying gravity should not exist.  It does; accept it!  To say otherwise is to bury your head in the sand like an Ostrich, and to pout that you can't have everything.  So?  Blame is totally out of place here.

and ultimately a high demand among resellers (who I like to refer to as cartridge scalpers in the this case).

And now we are back to the item being rare in reality, as opposed to being rare artificially?  More idea reversals.

His words boil down to, "If I cannot have all of the candy in the candy store, and all of my friends cannot also have all of the candy in the candy store, we'll get angry and call you people names".  How childish?  How very un-adult of him?

Basically within days of CGE ending, Ebay profiteers who had attended CGE and bought these limited releases were selling them on Ebay "Profiteers"?  More name-calling?  How immature.  The simple reality is, once they pay the seller's price, it is their property, to do with as they please.  Get used to that concept, as well.
for inflated prices. Not true.  Whatever price the market will bear, is the true price of the end item.  Welcome to "Capitalism 101".
A Combat II cartridge, which days before was only $30 now sold for $129.50, Elevator Action for $182.50.

Just because you liked the discounted give-away price of $30 better, that does not in any way mean that $30 is the "right price" for the item.  The free market sets its own prices.  It is folly to ignore that price because you like a lower one.

It is well known that various artist's works which now sell for millions of dollars each, were once items the maker could not sell at a good price, or at any price.  That does not in any realistic way mean that the person that paid millions, paid too much.  It just means that buyer wanted it more than others did (and that poor artists will starve or change professions) .

If anything, given the reality that most of the time and effort on the seller's part was a DONATION to the original buyer, it is the SELLER that is being taken advantage of here.

To ignore the original artists / creator / seller's rights, while whining loudly that various parties uninvolved in the original sale are being treated poorly during a resale, is hopelessly ignorant of the realities of life, and in very, very bad taste.

If you have little or no empathy for the artist / creator / seller, why would that person give a hoot about any uninvolved parties?  If you don't allow them to decide how much time they have to give you, out of their own daily lives, and how much you feel that they MUST give away to some stranger's abstract and limitless whims, expect them to just ignore you for the crazy, ungrateful, meddling fool that you are.

Again, this is all very dehumanizing.  To wave aside the rights of the artist, disregard their struggles, and then look at their creations only as a product, is to be guilty of what this man says he abhors; people taking advantage of other people for no reason but the desire to make very high financial gains.

I have two thoughts on the matter.

Actually, if you dissect the man's twisted logic and parse the sentences involved, it does not add up to just two thoughts.  I take this to be further evidence that the author routinely has considerable difficulty when counting as high as three.

The author's failure to both know his own mind, and to add up single-digit numbers, explains much of his bitterness at this alleged problem, which he fails miserably to articulate.  He is upset that he did not get something, so he wants to make it seem like a global crisis.  The globe has real ones, thank you.

I sympathize with those that look at these auctions as a golden opportunity to get a piece of gaming history they had no other way to get at because they could not attend CGE.

I'm counting... that's one thought, so far.

I'm only repeating myself because he keeps doing it, but I will point out again that this premise is just plain wrong.  The later packaging may not be "limited edition" but the games are almost always available in another form, post-event.

However, I feel these people are victims of these privateers.

That's two thoughts, so far... I'm still counting.

I repeat: it is still just plain wrong to ignore the plight of the person(s) who created an end item, which they then sold willingly at a big loss, and then to slap that kind person in the face for the alleged creation of a questionable problem.

These resellers who came there with the intention to buy the cartridge and resell them for a jacked up price to people who had no other option.

Huh?  That fraction of a sentence makes no sense.  I think he meant to say the sentence without the first "who" there, but with his twisted logic and sudden reversals, who knows?

Yet again, he brings up the "no other option" falsehood.  It does not make it more true, the more you tell your lies.

And in doing this, they also raped the CGE attendees, taking them out of the hands of honest collectors who were able to make it to CGE.

The term "rape" is obviously a misapplied over-statement, as is the term "honest".  All those terms show is that the author is very upset about the subject, and that he is not thinking rationally and objectively about the situation (no kidding!).

The misplaced word "also" makes the sentence hard to grasp, let alone the concept behind it.  "Them" apparently refers to the cartridges, but it is buried in a sentence referring to people as "they," which adds more unnecessary confusion.

Even if you accepted the author's very faulty premises and assumptions made so far, 100% "as is," they still would not lead any reasonably sane person to the author's conclusions.

But these privateers were not solely to blame.

Bingo.... that is thought number three out of his claim of two!

Note the clear use of the word "blame" in this sentence.

The people who made and distributed these cartridges must be blamed Note the second use of the word "blame" in this sentence.
as well for a naivety and lack of understanding of the market that rivals the days of the great video game crash of '83-'84.

For someone with a proven inability to count to three reliably, I'd say this is just "the pot calling the kettle black".

As to a lack of understanding of the market, I would say the author himself suffers most grievously from that!  Not only does he obviously not have a clue when it comes to finances and capitalism, but he fails to understand even the rudiments of basic human psychology.  Yelling at and thrice "blaming" people who did you a huge favor, is no way to get them to want to do you another.  Quite the opposite!  It should be self-evident that the favor-doer is most likely going to tell you to go straight to hell in the future, and to stop doing you any further favors, when you punish instead of reward them.

They created the market

Oh, bullcrap.  The market has existed for twenty years.  The multi-million dollar advertising campaigns of a multi-billion dollar industry once created the desire for gaming products.

The failure of some very irrational people to want to let go of that programmed desire for certain products, long after that advertising has ceased to be a part of mainstream society, is the root cause of the hard feelings felt by some modern consumers.  They can't accept that the hobby "moved on," are angry that it did, and bitter at all that remind them it did.

If advertisers told you to jump off a bridge, would you?  A wise person would not.  At some point you have to start thinking for yourself, and not blame others for your actions.

You reduce yourself to being one of "Pavlov's Dog" if you make the claim that any mention of a new product causes instant demand.  Self-control... there's a bold new concept!

This is also the same idiotic argument that says the crime of rape is morally permissible, if a person wears clothing you consider to be attractive.  Adult humans should know better.

and means for these privateers to operate by giving them the tools of having an artificially captive audience by limiting sales to CGE.

Another nonsensical or extremely poorly written sentence fragment... good Lord, man, please take an English class!?

Contrary to the author's view of the world, the concept of money was invented long before homebrew programmers came on the scene.  As was eBay, as were all the other "tools" of capitalism.  They had nothing to do with all that.

Nor can the author logically blame these programmers for the failure of some stranger to show up at an event that was publicized years in advance.  If they choose not to go, that is entirely their cross to bear, and not the maker's fault.  It shows they didn't care much, so why moan on their behalf?

Nor is it logical to say on the one hand that it is clearly not within the financial means of certain people to afford a trip to CGE, while putting your fingers in your ears whenever game programmers say they can't afford to make more games.

If it is fair for consumers to limit expenditures of time and money, why then is it a crime for makers to do so as well?

Some of these people did complain that their cartridges were winding up on Ebay,

The author misses the point entirely, another annoying time.

The complaints most likely to be registered by homebrew program authors is that they are being treated poorly in general by the niche market that claims to both support and appreciate their efforts.  This author, however, just heaps more abuse onto their plates, "blaming" them for the hard feelings of some ungrateful and irrationally upset people.

and in one case was able to have one of the auctions closed (which was wrong).

Excuse me... who died and made this obviously very addled and often inconsistent author the arbiter of our morality?  This isn't good journalism, or even philosophy.  It is just more of the author's poorly thought-out, nonsensical double-talk.

How can it (a) be morally wrong for the creator and former owner of an item to stop the resale of something he no longer owns, when the same author also claims (b) it is morally wrong that someone offered it for resale in the first place?

The only thing he has not said in so many words was wrong is the original sale... and that only so that he could benefit.

He thinks he is smart enough that we won't see through that?

But they have no one to blame but themselves. Despite later claims in the forums that he did not blame the makers of any item, there is the word "blame" for a third time (that's the third instance of "he can't count to three").
People were willing to pay the inflated prices, because they created the market and demand for resellers to do it.

Nonsense.  The maker merely made an item.  The act of product creation does not entail automatic demand, no matter how limited the number of some man-made object.

"Demand" is up to the individual decisions of the consumers who choose of their own free will to be a part of this hobby.

No one ever put a gun to their heads and used force to get anyone in this process to do any of the things they did.  Not the makers of the item, not the original buyers, not the people who choose not go to CGE.  Is "free will" really all that hard for this author to grasp?  Where is personal responsibility?

The reality is -- and the real root of the problem -- that this tiny little niche market is ravenously hungry for anything it can get its greedy little hands on... long BEFORE the new item is made and long BEFORE the new item is distributed.

They have a medical term for that, in extreme cases... "Obsessive / Compulsive Personality Disorder".

It is unhealthy to allow one's self to be so out of control that the mere mention of a new product causes instant turmoil.

How many people even play the games they buy, after they buy them?  Very, very few people, from most accounts.  If ever a person wanted to prove that this feeding frenzy for anything new is merely an unhealthy obsession, that's it!  If you honestly just wanted the product, you'd play the game.

If you allow yourself to routinely become upset about not being able to own some obsolete-for-decades game that someone just found or created, that you likely never heard of before a few days or weeks ago, you need professional help.

What's a solution to the problem? For out-of-control consumers to find empathy for others, and not be greedy little toads with no sense of manners or decency.  For non-owners to accept responsibility for their own actions and inactions, and not to "blame" others for things that are out of the control of those other people.
Short of producing a larger cache,

Double-talk, double-talk, double-talk!

That is exactly what this author will suggest, so how is it "short of" it?  He claims to both support and not support the same single idea.  The only thing that makes this whole chain of alleged logic "even-handed" as he later called it, is to give lip service to the opposing views, while saying that you totally reject all those views.  You agree or you do not.

which can be very hard on the pocket book for someone that's self publishing these cartridges, Which by definition is everyone making them, so why was there an attempt made here to sound like other options are available?  This isn't "even-handed," it is random nonsense.
there is an alternative that can at least hold off this problem. In your opinion, which does not stand up to logical analysis.  If you can't offer a real solution, don't claim that you can.
Save a part of production run for release after CGE,

Which can only mean one of two things.  It can mean you (a) really do want a larger production run, despite the lip service you just gave to that idea not being realistic, or (b) it can mean that you do in fact approve of what you earlier said was wrong-thinking and an all-around bad practice; to artificially create a high "have versus have not" ratio at the CGE event itself.  No other possibilities exist here.

Either you are asking homebrewers to make more, and sell the same original amount at CGE, or you are asking them to make the same original amount, and sell less of them at CGE.  Either way, your words invalidate your arguments.

albeit at a bit of a higher price. Which you already rejected, calling such prices "artificial" at one point, and "reasonable" at another.  Either the original price was in fact "reasonable" and the highest price that should ever be charged, or the market itself picks a price and you have no reason to complain about the price it picks.
If you don't want people immediately reselling them for profit, have an agreement for people to sign when they purchase it - no different than any other software licensing agreement.

This is not a solution, it is a misguided fantasy, founded on even more of this author's unreal, illogical underpinnings.

There is no way to enforce these types of agreements, short of taking the non-cooperative person to court, at an insane costs to the game's maker.  Sorry, this is not a real solution.

Furthermore, earlier you said it was "wrong" that a maker apparently had the gall to stop an eBay auction, while you now say just the opposite; you imply here that it would be fine to sue them to enforce your will.  Huh?

Even just getting a legal agreement written up by a lawyer would be prohibitively costly for homebrewers.  So I say again, this is not a real solution, it is a misguided fantasy.

Then you'd at least have something legitimate and legal to complain to Ebay about. Oh really?  What about the "new" homebrew games that were made by taking someone else's copyright works and just altering parts of them?  Are you honestly saying that eBay would support such a homebrewer?  You're dreaming!
The extra money made from the higher prices of "after CGE" sales

Where are you going to get "extra money" out of an item that is sold at a huge loss, in terms of time and money invested to create the prototype item, let alone copies?  You're dreaming.

If you are suggesting that these items should be sold at a reasonable price -- meaning what any sane business must charge to actually make a real profit above costs and to stay in business -- then you are saying that these items should cost consumers $1,000 or more per cartridge.

Which is just plain nuts; no one will pay that for an item that was not created then, although some collectors might pay a few hundred (even that is very doubtful).

It would make far more sense to write modern games, then to try to make business-type money out of an old hobby.

could also go to possibly funding a second production run

How?  The first run didn't even break even, financially.

It costs one or more hours out of someone's life, to make each new copy of each cart they try to distribute to others, even if all they are doing is recycling a common cart and putting a new game program chip and new label on it.

We all have lives.  It takes time and money to do this.  In any situation where a net loss is suffered, it will take time for a person to get over the loss, and be ready to risk more.  It in foolhardy in the extreme to suggest those losses can simply be ignored, while you tell us to rush to incur further losses.

of the cartridge or a run of a different cartridge for next year, You expect this same thing, every year?  That would only guarantee divorce in married people, loss of all social life in single people, and possibly also homelessness.  Hello!?
rather than in the pocket of someone who the game means nothing more to than a tool to see how much money they can get reselling it. What about the pockets of the people that made it?  I did not at any time see any suggestion from you that says it is the moral duty of all original buyers to monetarily support those people, or to help off-set their losses, through any type of voluntary donations to these hard working folks?  Hello?
The bottom line is that all parties concerned, especially those releasing these cartridges, MUST be more responsible. And that includes people writing lame-brained, poorly researched, poorly thought out "editorials" that hurt the hobby more than any eBay reseller could ever hope to!
Ultimately, they must realize the control they have in this classic gaming field, and the power to screw it up.

And to have the maturity to admit when they've done so, and to apologize both humbly and profusely for doing so.

Instead, you ignored repeated, "Yes, you did stab us all in the back" messages from many well-known homebrewers and their (few) forum supporters.  But to call those people names instead, and to refuse to apologize, even when it is obvious you have no logical legs to stand on?  That is unforgivable!

These types of resellers and leaches will always exist. As will vain people with big mouths and very tiny brains.
But ultimately, it's you - the programmers/makers/distributors who must protect us, the public, from them. Adult human beings do not "Run to mommy and daddy" for help, all the time.  They fend for themselves.  Grow up!
This editorial does not represent the views of classicgaming.com or GameSpy Industries. The author takes sole responsibility. No, he doesn't.  He does not understand the adult concept of taking personal responsibility for his words or his actions.  His follow-up comments on the message forum boards make that plain enough.  Let's face it; he can't play well with others.

Comments? Take them to the Forums or Mail us!

[End of article]

Exactly 40 total messages were allowed on those forums, before the author of this so-called even-handed editorial had a childish temper tantrum, and disallowed any further additions to be made to the existing thread.  He then went further, saying that any new threads would be deleted.  If his article was really sane and well-written, why do that?  I believe he knows he did something wrong, and refuses to accept any responsibility for it.  Shame on that man-child!

 

Conclusion:

You cannot have all the candy in the store.  You can't.  I can't.  None of us can.  Get used to that idea, because no attempts to beg or plead or cry or try to trick others into making the impossible possible are going to work.  Either accept those realities, or live in a fantasy world.  It is rude and childish and utterly irresponsible to blame others for things that are just as much out of their control, as yours.
 

 


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