Once upon a time, if a person wanted to voice their opinion about a topic to the general public and and not do so in “real time”, he or she submitted a “Letter to the Editor”. The author could write up their opinions and position and have it posted for all to see. Along came technology and this concept evolved: businesses and institutions use social media to better communicate with their clients, fan clubs have forums and message boards, and groups of fans are able to come together in the form of online communities. All of this breeds a climate where ideas can be freely exchanged and both praise and criticism can be shared. It’s the “Letter to the Editor v3.0”.
No one can dispute the fact that 2012 has been a year of blunders and missteps for the G.I. Joe Collector’s Club. Pretty much anything that could go wrong with the Club’s various endeavors has and the organization has been left scrambling to communicate details and a positive message. However, it would seem that the issues might go back further than that. Presented below is an item that dropped in my inbox today– an editorial from a long-time member of the Collector’s Club who has had enough. It is presented in its entirety– with only the author’s identity removed at his/her request.
The GI Joe Collector’s Club needs to be immediately disbanded: One betrayed former collector’s 11 year long rant
I’m done. DONE. I have enjoyed collecting both 12″ and 33/4″ GI Joe figures for over 20 years now. I’ve enjoyed it with my children. I’ve enjoyed showing that what Daddy wore when he was in the service, while they were fascinated with characters like Snake Eyes and Destro. But now, thanks solely to the GI Joe Collector’s Club, an organization who exists only to cater to people like me, I am so disgusted with the hobby as a whole, I am walking away.
Over the last 10 years, the GIJCC has become increasingly greedy, arrogant, mismanaged and unapologetic to the people it professes to serve. I blame it on the dollar signs I saw in the eyes of Brian Savage (the Club owner, directer, patriarch, resident Kool-Aid mixer, der Fuhrer, etc) when he got the OK from Hasbro to take over the Transformers Collector’s Club several years ago. The Transformers brand is a worldwide seller, with many more members with much, much deeper pockets. The GIJCC has been a small, family run club for many years, so giving them a cash cow like Botcon was bound to turn them into the money grubbing, greed-mongering, carpet-bagging bridge trolls they have become. But as I have watched their slow decline, I held out hope that the core tenets of my precious GI Joe fan club would remain unchanged in the face of it’s more lucrative younger brother, that they would still put on a family friendly event that we could afford, still put out product I can be proud to display and play with, and still make me and my children happy. As of today, I have had enough. Continue reading