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Jack White Defends His Third Man eBay Auctions

Jack White is busy making $$$ by auctioning off rarities from his Third Man record label via eBay, sparking a backlash against him by his own fans. White had apparently become incensed at people buying up his limited edition releases and selling them for a huge profit on the auction site, and has instead decided to take matters into his own hands.


"We sell a Wanda Jackson split record for 10 bucks, the eBay flipper turns around and sells it for 300," he wrote on the Third Man message board. "If 300 is what it's worth, then why doesn't Third Man Records sell it for 300? If we sell them for more, the artist gets more, the flipper gets nothing ... We thought we'd let you decide how much they cost this time."


Some of White’s exchanges got increasingly heated: “If you don't want [this record], DONT BUY IT,” he said. “And if you do want it, don't act like you DON'T want it. Get in line like anyone else ... It's you and others wanting them that dictates the price and the entire nature of the idea." Yikes. You can read most of the exchanges between White and his fans over on this Antiquiet post

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Jack White
The White Stripes

Very simple solution: press enough so supply meets demand, or re-press the record when it sells out. Artificially manufactured "collector's items"/eBay bait aren't good for music fans, only scummy collectors.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/MFB/profilepicjpg.jpg MFB

That's a good point, MFB, but so is White's.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/brandon/216_browser_clut.gif brandon

"Very simple solution"? Solution to what? If you press a ton of a particular disc or repress it, it would be neither rare, nor collectable. Some people like to collect rare vinyl and are willing to pay for it. According to you, MFB, this makes them "scummy"? That seems like a pretty harsh and unjustified insult... as is your suggestion that releasing rare vinyl is somehow bad for music fans. As White points out, the recordings that get released in a rare, collectable format have also been released in a standard, inexpensive "unlimited" version. Fans of the music who don't care about collectable vinyl can purchase those. So music fans get what they want, and collectors do as well. The only problem here is that of ebay flippers getting all this money that could and should be going to the label and the artists. And White seems to have already found a "very simple solution" for that.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/GregIngber/gaywayswiththejello.jpg GregIngber

I think Jack White should shy away from contacting his fans directly through the internet. It's clearly not doing him any favours, so far. It's really not his bag, anyway.


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