2012 BPA Survey Results—Auction
Jan. 12, 2013

The ABC Auction and Auction Store did not skip a beat when it moved to Lampeter Hall from the Showroom and continues to grow while providing a refreshing change of pace from the tournament wars before those events resume in earnest Tuesday night.

What You'd Like to See... What You Want Not to Change How I See It...
More Days 1: I don't want the Auction and Auction Store limited to just one day. By the time I arrive, its over.   Sorry, we have neither the space nor the staff to prolong the auction and/or auction store past its current hours.
Early Notification 1: I would like to have an e-mail sent to people that wish to sell games at the convention so that they can get a list of the games that they wish to sell in sooner.   We do that already, although we have yet to figure out how to limit it to those who happen to be in the mood to sell games this year. It's called the free monthly newsletter and will solve this as well as many other problems if only people would read it. Get on the list at http://lists.boardgamers.org/mailman/listinfo/bpamail. Even if you don't, its easy to anticipate the registration period which occurs on an annual basis. Get your list of games together and have it ready when the notice appears.

Monday 3: Move the Auction to Monday and start main tournaments on Tuesday morning.

Move Auction later in the week 5: The Auction is a highlight for me, but since the policy was instituted that all lots for the Auction Store must be delivered by Monday night, I have been unable to contribute items. It’s a great benefit to me to offer items in the Auction Store, and with this now unavailable to me, my participation in the Auction and Store as a seller is severely limited. I would like to see the policy return to the original state, where items may be delivered on Tuesday morning. Whether or not I am able to offer Auction/Store lots IS a determining factor in my attendance.

 

Moving the Auction earlier in the week forces people to arrive earlier to deliver their lots, making the Auction itself smaller and less viable due to reduced volume of both buyers and sellers. Conversely, moving it later in the week would increase the volume to an extent that would tax our volunteer staff who have a limit to how much of their gaming time they are willing to sacrifice to man it. Tuesday appears to be the best compromise.

Accounting for all items and sales is a duanting, time consuming task and our crew can be expected to sacrifice only so much of their gaming time to do it so if you want to participate you need to arrive during the scheduled window when it takes place.

Tournaments 15: I want tournaments during the Auction—or better yet—no Auction. / Can the Auction. Huge time sink, caters to small minority. / Although I enjoy the Auction, I do not think it is a core part of WBC. The core of WBC is playing games in tournaments. We could save almost a full day without changing in any way what I come to WBC for. I would also be willing to give up the Vendor area and Open Gaming area. On The Other Hand 25: The Auction has always been a highlight of the week for me and I would be VERY disappointed to see it eliminated. It's a welcome break from all the other gaming activities during the week and the people who run it do a truly outstanding job (I particularly enjoy Bruce Reiff as auctioneer—he really makes it fun!). I'd also mention that the people running the Auction seem to enjoy doing it, even though I know it's a lot of work on their part. If they are willing to continue running the Auction, then I see no reason to do away with it as the crowds are good and people seem to have a great time. / I LOVE the Auction and Auction Store—especially since it moved to Lampeter. / I enjoy the Auction as a kickoff to the week. / Bruce is hysterical. / My favorite feature of WBC is the Auction Store. I am always excited to see what games are being offered and appreciate all of the effort that goes into holding such an event. It's like Christmas for gamers!!

Ever hear of having too much of a good thing? Nobody can claim to being a bigger booster of tournaments than I. WBC is living proof of that. But just how far do you think that we would have gotten if all WBC had to offer was tournaments? Without Open Gaming and Vendors, we'd be less than half our size. So, be thankful you have a robust convention that features tournament play while offering other attractions that make the whole package viable. And hopefully, while enjoying those other features, some gamers who would never have attended a tournament-only convention, will discover competitive gaming and realize that it is not the boogeyman it's been made out to be. A well-run Auction/Auction Store is one such feature.

Tournaments are not the only gaming that happens at WBC. Besides Open Gaming, the Sampler Showcase introduces new games during the Auction break. It and the Auction both would be unable to keep the necessary volunteers against a backdrop of competing tournaments. Moreover, the law requires that we hold an Annual Meeting attended by a minimum of the membership to maintain our non-profit status. Experience has shown that hijacking a portion of the Auction to complete that requirement is the only way to accomplish that and keep the whole shebang—including tournaments—running. Certainly, scheduling an Annual Meeting was not enough to draw members who are more interested in playing than the legalities of governing and keeping the convention alive.

Lastly, by Tuesday, some of the more competive types have been going at it for three days nonstop, racing from one event to another, without breaks for rest, meals or exercise. Allowing tournament play to continue on Tuesday morning could extend that streak to nine days. That occasionally leads to the kind of short temper episodes that our disparagers love to attribute to competitive gmers. So, Tuesday is designated as a day of rest to force a break from non-stop tournament action.

Flea Market 1: I'd like to see the Auction/Store replaced with a flea market that can be concluded in an hour (+ set-up and close down time). Individuals handling their own sales would also decrease the staffing requirements. Table fees could replace Auction cuts to minimize lost revenue to the BPA.   Flea markets have far less entertainment value IMO and require owners to be present for the sale. They also are very inefficient and cost prohibitive for the person who has only a few items they wish to sell. More importantly, they generate a horde of unsold items that would be constantly popping up in impromptu sales displays and monopolizig scarce table space throughout the week causing illwill and requiring more enforcement of convention rules.
Silent Auction 2: Replace active Auction with a silent one. / I don't think an Auction is that important anymore. Let owners post items for sale on a board or listing and have them sold privately.   See above. Silent auctions also require too much space and are far less effective in holding attention and generating sales. It would also eliminate the only time when I actually enjoy listening to Bruce. I'll deny ever saying this of course but he is actually an entertaining auctioneer. It harkens back to a slower, more enjoyable time. Nostalgic and enjoyable for the game collector and us oldtimers who enjoy the trip down memory lane.
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