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PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2008 1:59 pm 
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johnideal wrote:
First post!

Alright, I'm admittedly a bit new to the collecting game (in this field at least), but not at all to the web game.

Dynamic server and db scaling solutions are available and cheap. They need not be permanent, but focused specifically at times when increased traffic is anticipated.

It really boils down to the competence of those creating / running the site. There is officially no reason to have a site that doesn't scale to meet traffic demands, contrary to what most here say.


Well, I agree that there is a semi-flaw in the argument that myself and others have made that it doesn't make sense to pay for equipment you only use a few times a year - which is that (I assume) most little shops don't own any of the actual equipment hosting the site. Maybe a colo or dedicated server at BEST... but the quality of their hosts service (available bandwidth, scalability, support, etc) does affect the costs, so the fundamental argument (it takes money to fix the problem) is sound.

I've never run a small shop (and have no knack for business anyway) but I believe you are overestimating the size of some of these places. I think you are looking at places with 5 or fewer employees and sales of under 100k/month. Certainly they have no full time I.T. staff and are going to go in as cheap as possible.

Scalability isn't something easily obtained, as I'm sure you know. There are a lot of factors (internet bandwidth, server specs, software efficiency, etc) and to really have a good solution DOES cost a 'lot' of money (remember, these are small shops, so their definition of expensive may not be what we might be used to working with). As an example, I'll point out that Woot.com, whose business is 100% online and has over 30 employees (according to wikipedia) and, I'm sure, a small full-time I.T. staff, STILL can't weather the instant clobbering their servers take when a bag of crap pops up. :-s

So I don't really think it is fair to blame the shop owners.

I think the best thing to do is learn to be calm, even when your adrenaline is pumping and server errors are popping up everywhere, and understand your chances of getting an in demand item are low. Server errors affect the buying experience, not the likelihood of getting something. If you don't get it, it was just bad luck - not the servers fault or the stores fault.

But I do agree that the store owners shouldn't be complacent either. If your web host has problems, look in to getting another one. Or, better, consider alternative options (such as eBay). Unhappy customers = bad, regardless of how fair it is.

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PostPosted: Sat May 10, 2008 2:12 pm 
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I really don't want to join this thread, but I completely agree with the last part. Roto is always looking into improving their website/servers. Their online releases always seem to go smoothly. I few errors here and there but nothing major. And as long as you get the item in your cart, its yours.

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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 12:35 am 
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kngwiz wrote:
johnideal wrote:
First post!

Alright, I'm admittedly a bit new to the collecting game (in this field at least), but not at all to the web game.

Dynamic server and db scaling solutions are available and cheap. They need not be permanent, but focused specifically at times when increased traffic is anticipated.

It really boils down to the competence of those creating / running the site. There is officially no reason to have a site that doesn't scale to meet traffic demands, contrary to what most here say.


huh? lolz so are u saying that munkyking and all those online stores are at fault for not trying to upgrade or gain a better server/ db?


Is it really unreasonable to expect that an establishment would attempt to meet the demand they are quite obviously creating?

I'm not saying that they need to permanently upgrade or anything; what I'm saying is that it's possible to scale based on demand and that those maintaining these sites should be aware of these options.

Who knows? Maybe they did to a degree. I'm not speaking out against MK here, but honestly, more against those here who seem to feel that scaling a web site / app requires the permanent purchase of many thousand plus dollar machines. This is simply no longer the case.

[ Added: Sun May 11, 2008 12:53 am ]
MrMongoose wrote:
johnideal wrote:
First post!

Alright, I'm admittedly a bit new to the collecting game (in this field at least), but not at all to the web game.

Dynamic server and db scaling solutions are available and cheap. They need not be permanent, but focused specifically at times when increased traffic is anticipated.

It really boils down to the competence of those creating / running the site. There is officially no reason to have a site that doesn't scale to meet traffic demands, contrary to what most here say.


Well, I agree that there is a semi-flaw in the argument that myself and others have made that it doesn't make sense to pay for equipment you only use a few times a year - which is that (I assume) most little shops don't own any of the actual equipment hosting the site. Maybe a colo or dedicated server at BEST... but the quality of their hosts service (available bandwidth, scalability, support, etc) does affect the costs, so the fundamental argument (it takes money to fix the problem) is sound.

I've never run a small shop (and have no knack for business anyway) but I believe you are overestimating the size of some of these places. I think you are looking at places with 5 or fewer employees and sales of under 100k/month. Certainly they have no full time I.T. staff and are going to go in as cheap as possible.

Scalability isn't something easily obtained, as I'm sure you know. There are a lot of factors (internet bandwidth, server specs, software efficiency, etc) and to really have a good solution DOES cost a 'lot' of money (remember, these are small shops, so their definition of expensive may not be what we might be used to working with). As an example, I'll point out that Woot, whose business is 100% online and has over 30 employees (according to wikipedia) and, I'm sure, a small full-time I.T. staff, STILL can't weather the instant clobbering their servers take when a bag of crap pops up. :-s

So I don't really think it is fair to blame the shop owners.

I think the best thing to do is learn to be calm, even when your adrenaline is pumping and server errors are popping up everywhere, and understand your chances of getting an in demand item are low. Server errors affect the buying experience, not the likelihood of getting something. If you don't get it, it was just bad luck - not the servers fault or the stores fault.

But I do agree that the store owners shouldn't be complacent either. If your web host has problems, look in to getting another one. Or, better, consider alternative options (such as eBay). Unhappy customers = bad, regardless of how fair it is.


All very well put.

Perhaps I am making inaccurate assumptions about the budget that these shops have for website maintenance. I do maintain however that with the onset of virtual hosting environments, scalable hosting is much less expensive than it used to be. That said, you are correct in saying that it could still be well outside the means of a small shop.

Also, I'm really not trying to reprimand the shops here; when I wrote that post last night I was more concerned with the complacency of folks here when it came to the quality of this sort of online purchasing experience. I was speaking out against the de facto expectation.

That said, I agree about remaining calm and appropriately setting expectations. My adrenaline was pumping, but I knew the chances were slim. Ironically, I don't think I saw as many errors as some folks here; only a couple times as I was trying to see the 'Buy' button, not once after the item was in my cart.


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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 1:23 am 
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we'll the website may suck, but i think its about time that munky king also revamped their store as well...it still looks the same from day one...every time i walk into that store i fell so artless...half the store is blank...they have so much room to make it look pizazzed...if they want to uppen their style and revamp their website they should do so to attract more customers...im sure they have the money...and on top of that the people who work there seems to have no or little knowledge about the toys...i bought a pink tag team dunny a while back ago...and the girl just slams the toy in the box...i said hey wait a minute wheres the foil...she replies what foil...i told her the foil the dunny is supposed to be inside of...luckily there was an extra foil in the back, but it gets funnier..she pulls out a 3 inch dunny foil and tells me how is the big toy going to fit in this...so i had to go to my car and get a foil that i purchased from kidrobot and explain and show her what the foil looked like...she didn't have the foil but sold me the tag team for 5 bucks less...hehehehhe...too funny so here's my two cents...

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 Post subject: VTN Vendor Table!
PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 1:59 am 
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When the Vinyl Toy Network listed it's attending vendors I was excited to see what Munky King was going to bring to the show, but what happens when I get to the show? They had a handful of toys and nothing else. The toys they were showing were the Thomas Han Pushers and you know how board members feel about Thomas Han as a person (even though his toys are pretty ill.) It was definitely not a quality representation of their business at a trade show such as this one.

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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 2:19 am 
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There's really nothing wrong with the Munky King store. I was actually surprsied the last time I visited. They had so much artwork up. You see a piece by marka on the wall. Prints covering the whole side of the other wall. A large selection of toys. Mini gallery in the back. What more can you as for from a shop. Where as the KR store is starting to look more and more like Bape.


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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 2:20 am 
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cprobot wrote:
we'll the website may suck, but i think its about time that munky king also revamped their store as well...it still looks the same from day one...every time i walk into that store i fell so artless...half the store is blank...they have so much room to make it look pizazzed...if they want to uppen their style and revamp their website they should do so to attract more customers...im sure they have the money...and on top of that the people who work there seems to have no or little knowledge about the toys...i bought a pink tag team dunny a while back ago...and the girl just slams the toy in the box...i said hey wait a minute wheres the foil...she replies what foil...i told her the foil the dunny is supposed to be inside of...luckily there was an extra foil in the back, but it gets funnier..she pulls out a 3 inch dunny foil and tells me how is the big toy going to fit in this...so i had to go to my car and get a foil that i purchased from kidrobot and explain and show her what the foil looked like...she didn't have the foil but sold me the tag team for 5 bucks less...hehehehhe...too funny so here's my two cents...


tag team dont come with foils....
the only 8 inchers that do are the ones where there is a chase
stop taking advantage of the poor workers

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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 2:22 am 
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johnideal wrote:
kngwiz wrote:
johnideal wrote:
First post!

Alright, I'm admittedly a bit new to the collecting game (in this field at least), but not at all to the web game.

Dynamic server and db scaling solutions are available and cheap. They need not be permanent, but focused specifically at times when increased traffic is anticipated.

It really boils down to the competence of those creating / running the site. There is officially no reason to have a site that doesn't scale to meet traffic demands, contrary to what most here say.


huh? lolz so are u saying that munkyking and all those online stores are at fault for not trying to upgrade or gain a better server/ db?


Is it really unreasonable to expect that an establishment would attempt to meet the demand they are quite obviously creating?

I'm not saying that they need to permanently upgrade or anything; what I'm saying is that it's possible to scale based on demand and that those maintaining these sites should be aware of these options.

Who knows? Maybe they did to a degree. I'm not speaking out against MK here, but honestly, more against those here who seem to feel that scaling a web site / app requires the permanent purchase of many thousand plus dollar machines. This is simply no longer the case.

[ Added: Sun May 11, 2008 12:53 am ]
MrMongoose wrote:
johnideal wrote:
First post!

Alright, I'm admittedly a bit new to the collecting game (in this field at least), but not at all to the web game.

Dynamic server and db scaling solutions are available and cheap. They need not be permanent, but focused specifically at times when increased traffic is anticipated.

It really boils down to the competence of those creating / running the site. There is officially no reason to have a site that doesn't scale to meet traffic demands, contrary to what most here say.


Well, I agree that there is a semi-flaw in the argument that myself and others have made that it doesn't make sense to pay for equipment you only use a few times a year - which is that (I assume) most little shops don't own any of the actual equipment hosting the site. Maybe a colo or dedicated server at BEST... but the quality of their hosts service (available bandwidth, scalability, support, etc) does affect the costs, so the fundamental argument (it takes money to fix the problem) is sound.

I've never run a small shop (and have no knack for business anyway) but I believe you are overestimating the size of some of these places. I think you are looking at places with 5 or fewer employees and sales of under 100k/month. Certainly they have no full time I.T. staff and are going to go in as cheap as possible.

Scalability isn't something easily obtained, as I'm sure you know. There are a lot of factors (internet bandwidth, server specs, software efficiency, etc) and to really have a good solution DOES cost a 'lot' of money (remember, these are small shops, so their definition of expensive may not be what we might be used to working with). As an example, I'll point out that Woot, whose business is 100% online and has over 30 employees (according to wikipedia) and, I'm sure, a small full-time I.T. staff, STILL can't weather the instant clobbering their servers take when a bag of crap pops up. :-s

So I don't really think it is fair to blame the shop owners.

I think the best thing to do is learn to be calm, even when your adrenaline is pumping and server errors are popping up everywhere, and understand your chances of getting an in demand item are low. Server errors affect the buying experience, not the likelihood of getting something. If you don't get it, it was just bad luck - not the servers fault or the stores fault.

But I do agree that the store owners shouldn't be complacent either. If your web host has problems, look in to getting another one. Or, better, consider alternative options (such as eBay). Unhappy customers = bad, regardless of how fair it is.


All very well put.

Perhaps I am making inaccurate assumptions about the budget that these shops have for website maintenance. I do maintain however that with the onset of virtual hosting environments, scalable hosting is much less expensive than it used to be. That said, you are correct in saying that it could still be well outside the means of a small shop.

Also, I'm really not trying to reprimand the shops here; when I wrote that post last night I was more concerned with the complacency of folks here when it came to the quality of this sort of online purchasing experience. I was speaking out against the de facto expectation.

That said, I agree about remaining calm and appropriately setting expectations. My adrenaline was pumping, but I knew the chances were slim. Ironically, I don't think I saw as many errors as some folks here; only a couple times as I was trying to see the 'Buy' button, not once after the item was in my cart.


Everyone should read this before making attacks on any website about server crashes.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 2:52 am 
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iliksprite wrote:
cprobot wrote:
we'll the website may suck, but i think its about time that munky king also revamped their store as well...it still looks the same from day one...every time i walk into that store i fell so artless...half the store is blank...they have so much room to make it look pizazzed...if they want to uppen their style and revamp their website they should do so to attract more customers...im sure they have the money...and on top of that the people who work there seems to have no or little knowledge about the toys...i bought a pink tag team dunny a while back ago...and the girl just slams the toy in the box...i said hey wait a minute wheres the foil...she replies what foil...i told her the foil the dunny is supposed to be inside of...luckily there was an extra foil in the back, but it gets funnier..she pulls out a 3 inch dunny foil and tells me how is the big toy going to fit in this...so i had to go to my car and get a foil that i purchased from kidrobot and explain and show her what the foil looked like...she didn't have the foil but sold me the tag team for 5 bucks less...hehehehhe...too funny so here's my two cents...


tag team dont come with foils....
the only 8 inchers that do are the ones where there is a chase
stop taking advantage of the poor workers



Maybe this person should take their own advise and learn about the toys...

idiot.

I love how people flip out at employees who don't know much about crap. Its a RETAIL JOB get the nunchucks over it. I'm pretty sure most of them are there for the paycheck. Some of them are students who probably don't have time to spend hours upon hours on the internet reading up on all this crap.

I just don't understand why this discussion comes up after every big (pretty much only JLed toys) release. WHY would any of these shops pay or even have the capability to run a web setup the likes of amazon or eBay (who makes a BILLION dollars every 5 days)??

If I remember correctly BOTH Samsclub and Costcos websites crashed a few times during the PS3 launch. Those are HUGE multibillion dollar companies. Sometimes servers crash, get the nunchucks over it. Just be glad that in times like these where you DIDN'T get your precious toy that you have eBay. At least paying double is better than not getting it since you care sooooooooo much about it that you will try to publicly tarnish a shops reputation for something that frankly ISN'T their fault.

please remember these are toys folks.

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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 6:35 am 
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Munky King is nothing like Sam's Club or Costco -- it's a specialty retail store with a handful of employees who should know the product they are selling. I'm not saying they should know about every designer toy that hits the market, but at least what they sell in-store. Those big corporate stores employs tens of thousands of staff and sell a wide variety of products, so it is easier to show leeway when they don't know their product. Comparing the two is ludacris and like comparing night to day!

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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 8:49 am 
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are you still crying about this?? good grief man get over it!@


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PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 8:53 am 
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their website is better than yours.

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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2008 8:15 am 
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Though the site had a couple flaws I called today regarding my pyro order they were awesome and extremely helpful.

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PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 7:23 am 
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there is a guy at MK, i forget his name but he handles all web orders and the site etc, he is a nice guy, I met him at the Chinatown store. I agree some of the employees there are useless, but I'm sure its not everyone. On the other hand It is a bit strange to have a specialty store staffed by people who are not into the scene. If I go to a supermarket to buy wine its acceptable, if I go to a wine shop I would expect the staff to know about wine. I go to many toy shops as this is something I enjoy, I always have a good conversation at KR but rarely the same experience at MK, truth is I only go to MK when I need something in particular. There are a few toy people there but most of the time its just an employee who could probably care less. This is making me think I had brought a friend in earlier in the year and he was really interested i some customs they had, guy was prepared to drop big bucks and the girl at the desk acted like we were interrupting her phone call by having her open the showcase. Needless to say he spent is money somewhere else. Oh well.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:40 am 
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yea suckeddddd!!!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:15 am 
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skaterboy wrote:
On the other hand It is a bit strange to have a specialty store staffed by people who are not into the scene. If I go to a supermarket to buy wine its acceptable, if I go to a wine shop I would expect the staff to know about wine.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:35 am 
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Yea but they also got one hot chic up in there, wowsers!

I'll buy that for a dollar! \:D/


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:48 am 
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Wow...why can't this thread be locked? No major store is going to be liked by everyone. Until major releases are done a different way or through a place with major server power (such as, but not limited to ebay) this is going to continue to be a problem for all vinyl stores who host them.

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