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The Revenue Review – Where do we go from here?

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States results have been in for more than a week now, and you’ve been bombarded with Top 8 lists and all kinds of price information.

What do you do now?

Knowing how to process this information is important to keeping ahead of the game. I’ve got a couple of points that should help you do that.

Staying up to the minute

This is obvious, but much harder than it sounds. The best way to catch cards before they spike in price is to be there at the event where they take off.

Of course you can’t always physically “be” there, but there are plenty of ways to stay connected. The best tool is www.ggslive.com. If you haven’t watched them, then you need to start.

They cover large events (other than Pro Tours) with video coverage of matches, and (mostly) entertaining commentary on the matches.

For example, I was able to jump ahead of the game on Serra Ascendant after US Nationals just by watching the coverage, where all the talk was about Conley Woods’ latest concoction. There are usually only about 1,000 people watching the feed at a time, so you don’t have to worry about the whole world being updated at the same time. Most people won’t see the results from the event until the next day, at which time you’ll already be invested.

Another useful tool is Twitter. Every week I include my Twitter account (@Chosler88) and most of the other authors on here do the same. Getting involved on Twitter is a great way to stay informed because you have a direct, real-time connection to pros such as Mike Flores and Pat Chapin. Some of you with the fancy phones can even do this from your cell phone.

If those instant options aren’t available, you can fall back on some slightly slower methods such as Quiet Speculation and www.dailymtg.com.

Finding the signs

This step is a bit more involved. Basically you need to take the information you’ve got from the channels above and apply it along with some deductive reasoning.

For instance, like I pointed out last week, Lux Cannon saw some play at States and is poised to see more play as the block progresses. You can spot cards like this by following Top 8s from events including 5ks and PTQs, not just Grand Prixs and Pro Tours.

Understanding the effect pros have on cards is also important. When Pat Chapin posts a decklist, that has an impact. Checking these articles at midnight every day is a great way to get ahead of the price impact on sites at Ebay.

Now that you’re following all these sources, you still need to implement the last and most important step.

Be Bold

This is a trap I find myself falling into from time to time. With limited funds, it can be really hard to commit yourself to something that might not pay off. But you have to do it to really make the profits you are looking for. Trust your instincts on cards, because even if you are wrong sometimes, it’s extremely gratifying when you’re right and pick up your Tarmogoyfs before anyone else.

This works best when you’re buying and selling online using sites like Ebay, but it can also apply to trading. If you think a card has all the making of a card about to spike, don’t be afraid to trade aggressively for them. Cards come back, so you need to take your chances when you can to make a big profit. Grinding out small profits week after week is important, but so is taking your shots every now and then.

Reader Trade of the week:

After a break, we’re back with another submitted trade. This one comes from Brian Doran, and the trade itself is a few weeks old, so looking back at it now will provide an interesting perspective.

Again, I’ll quote his post for the trade before I get into it.

“My next partner was a bit fickle to sit and trade, I followed him out to smoke, he got really chatty with me about who knows what, I work sales so I'm used to casually laughing and nodding to just about anything.  Finally I get him to go back to a table and next round pairings go up. I almost screamed.  The round ends and I finally get him to sit still.  He's browsing through my folder, continuing to chat it up, I would ask him what he valued certain cards at whenever it seemed like he lost focus.  He brought up an idea for R/B Pyromancer Ascension post rotation, and I recommended giving bloodcheif a try along side of it.

My (11.18)

3 Dragonskull Summit (2.44)

4 Bloodchief Ascension (0.75)

1 Gaea's Blessing Russian Time Shifted (0.86)

His (16.60)

Misty Rainforest (8.49)

Foil Pelakka Wurm (0.99)

Birds of Paradise (2.44)

Oracle of Mul Daya (2.79)

Elvish Archdruid (1.89)

Net (5.42)”

First of all, let’s update the prices for this trade and see how it works out. I’ll be using CoolStuffinc.com pricing, so we’re really more interested in the proportion of the trade rather than the exact numbers.

My ($18)

3 Dragonskull Summit ($3)

4 Bloodchief Ascension ($1.75)

1 Gaea's Blessing Russian Time Shifted ($2)

His ($27)

Misty Rainforest ($14)

Foil Pelakka Wurm ($.50)

Birds of Paradise ($4)

Oracle of Mul Daya ($4.50)

Elvish Archdruid ($4)

The prices work out to be about the same proportionately, with a 2-3 ratio. Obviously it’s a good trade value-wise, flipping some low-end rares for some hot Standard cards, but that’s not why I was interested in this trade.

The best part of this trade was the work Brian put in to accomplish it. I’ve talked before about how important it is to develop a relationship with your trading partners, and Brian did that perfectly here. Working to establish a trust with his partner is what makes this a special trade, and it’s something most people don’t put the work into when trading. Talking to your partners about why they want to trade and what type of cards they’re looking for is really effective, and it only takes a few minutes of effort to go this extra mile in your trades.

That’s it for the next week. Until next week, remember the best way to know a card is going to spike in price is to break the format yourself!

Corbin Hosler

@Chosler88 on Twitter

44 thoughts on “The Revenue Review – Where do we go from here?

  1. The only time it's ripping another person off is when there is deception. Not everyone values cards the same way. One person might place a premium on, say, black cards, or legendary cards, or tribals, while another person might place the more value on type 2 staples. Even with cards that have different monetary values, it is still up to the players to accept a trade or not. The only pressure a person can put on the other is threatening to leave the trade (Barring mafia-style "negotiation"). There was an article a little while back that talked about this very concept. A trade can be "even" in many respects. Maybe you have a 3 dollar card that is widely wanted, and your trade partner has a card that may be worth 2 or 3 times that, but isn't played in any deck, and isn't wanted by anyone. This may be monetarily unbalanced, but it is still a very fair trade.
    In a slightly related subject, everything you do in society revolves around getting the maximum amount possible for your goods, services, and time.

  2. If you were trading with a mentally challenged person who didn't know the price of cards and offered to trade a tarmogoyf for a millstone, would you do it? I know I wouldn't. As someone who knows the prices of most cards, its clear when someone knows the values of the cards they own and when they don't. Saying that they value them differently is denying the fact that for the most part it is ignorance of the actual value not using a different system of pricing. You are taking advantage of someone's lack of knowledge of prices to benefit yourself.

    You claim that there is no deception, but there is in fact deception, holding back correct knowledge that you know the other person doesn't have is in effect deceiving. Next time you think someone values cards differently than you to the tune of $20 tell them the actual prices of cards involved and see how they value them then. An honest trade is one where both parties have full knowledge of the prices of cards involved, not one where one person is taking advantage of anothers ignorance.

    In the mean time i'd work on adjusting my moral compass.

    1. Actually, given the feedback I've seen, I doubt most players here would make that trade either. Most people aren't here to rip other players off or "deceive" as you say.

      Now… say that player was 5 minutes away from tournament, needed and lost a millstone on his way, and was about to DQ if he didn't find it. Ignoring the fact that the prospect is "mentally challenged", how do you 'value' the two cards? The trade looks more like this:

      His:
      Tarmogoyf

      My:
      Millstone
      He gets to play in the tournament
      He doesn't have to forfeit all costs to get there
      He doesn't have to drive somewhere else to find the card
      He gets to spend more time prepping to play

      The 'value' of the trade doesn't look too far off at all.

      Another example… Trading into a store will typically give you around 80% price for your card. Does that mean all stores are ripping off their customers? I don't think they'd stay in business too long if that was the case.

      Now, moving away from the nebulous idea of "value", we can look at the pricing. You claim these people are being ripped off based on the pricing of the cards. As other posters have mentioned, which pricing are we talking about? Ebay, SCG, etc? The prices change depending on where you look so it's not quite that easy to mathematically determine who "won" the trade.

      The second variable is time. Price is ephemeral. Speculators are picking up cheaper cards, hoping they go up in price to trade them later for a profit.

      So if I go back a few months and trade someone for a bunch of Serra Ascendants at bulk rare pricing, when they were worth that much, and suddenly the pricing goes up, does that mean I've retroactively ripped them off? Does that make the card he got worth less? What about the other way around? I speculate on Kuldotha Phoenix now, and it goes to bulk price later. Does that mean the other guy ripped me off?

      What I'm getting at is that you're painting value traders with a broad brush saying, "If you won in the trade, then they must have lost." As has been endorsed by every writer on this site, longterm success is built upon establishing good relationships. Good relationships can only be built up over time through trades that always end in "win-win". To do otherwise is to put yourself out of business.

      1. That's exactly what I was getting at, and also, there is no one "God List" that has the exact price of every cards.

        Also, mad props for using ephemeral, it's good to know that not everyone's colloquy is decaying.

  3. @Honest Trader
    If someone was on fire and offered you a tarmogoyf for a bucket of water, would you take the trade? Yes that's a contrived question and so is your mentally challenged card trader question.

    We're not talking about ripping off orphans. We're talking about two consenting adults trading Magic cards. You mention withholding "correct" knowledge. What is the "correct" value of a Misty Rainforest? Is it CoolStuffInc's price? Channel Fireball's? Ebay? Even Ebay has a range of prices. Prices are liquid and constantly changing. Look at http://www.blacklotusproject.com to see how values fluctuate day to day (it is also a very neat site).

    And even if, god forbid, somebody is up 9 bucks on a trade (according to StarCity pricing on Oct 20, 2010) who cares? If the guy that lost the 9 bucks cares, he shouldn't be trading at FNM without looking up the values beforehand. I think you need to take some personal responsibility and allow us to take ours as well.

    Also, Corbin, thanks for the article! I enjoy reading the site tremendously 🙂

    1. kazzabat-say that player was 5 minutes away from tournament, needed and lost a millstone on his way, and was about to DQ if he didn’t find it.

      juan-If someone was on fire and offered you a tarmogoyf for a bucket of water, would you take the trade?

      These are perfect examples of changing value. Honest Trader, if you think that that is wrong, could you explain what is right about speculation? In that frame of mind, isn't speculation merely a chronologically shifted way to rip someone off?

      If you have a bone to pick, that's fine, but don't bring it to an intelligent debate. You don't have to agree with what everyone else is saying or doing, but refusing to acknowledge their stance only makes people frustrated.

  4. "If you were trading with a mentally challenged person who didn’t know the price of cards and offered to trade a tarmogoyf for a millstone, would you do it?"

    There is a difference between trading with the college kids at your FNM and dealing with special needs children. Why they would be unattended with some form of trade binder is beyond me. I also never trade with small children, I don't believe they are mature enough to make those kind of discussions.

    Much like the game itself, I feel no need to educate strangers, especially annoying ones that blow smoke on me. I don't see how anyone can have any empathy for the guys that don't do their homework. Most popular strategy sites are also vendors, the information is all there. This isn't 1997, people have google.

    Saying people value things differently is just what it is. Value =/= dollar amount. My cousin recently tried throwing away his magic collection because it was taking up space in his closet, how he valued his collection has changed dramatically over the years as he would of had a panic attack doing so several years ago. I was happy to dig most of it out of the trash as I valued it as potential trading opportunities.

  5. Well some people need ethics and some don't I guess. If taking advantage of people's lack of knowledge makes you happy than by all means keep ripping people off.

        1. Quiet Speculation is named after a card from Judgment. It's just a clever name because the name of the card fits so well with ONE of this site's topics. The site started as mostly speculation, but it branched off into more general financial advice related to MtG. Here's an old post from Jon Medina that I think you should read:
          http://mtgmetagame.com/the-myth-of-ripping-people

          That article was linked to here on this site back before Jon and Kelly (and others) formed the short-lived site Doubling Season. There was another post by Jon along the same lines called Top Level Trading, but I can't seem to find it anymore.

          Anyway, if you actually followed that link, you would find the same arguments (in the comments) as you are bringing up here. There are all nullified with a simple fact: in regards to collectibles, value is extremely subjective. The objective value of the cards is much smaller than most subjective values: even the rarest cards only required a few cents to design, produce, package, and transport.

          1. I just read the article, it seems like the author knows something is wrong and looks for reasons to justify it. For example, he tries to prove that its right to win something on ebay that you know is drastically underpriced because nobody in their right mind would send them an additional $40 to meet the actual price of the card. In all honesty in this case I would have probably offered to meet the seller somewhere in the middle, probably closer to his end. I like to think of myself as an honest person.

            He then goes on to argue that values aren't set in stone, they are like a moving target. Regardless of this if you are involved in a trade are you aware if its drastically in your favor? While clearly not an exact science cards do have a pretty specific range of values and you know full well whether you are taking advantage of someones lack of knowledge or not.

  6. @Honest Trader

    You're joking, right?

    We've patiently explained how value trading is more than fair, and you pretend to ignore it. I'll explain this one. More. Time.

    Casual traders generally trade based on a card's usefulness in a deck. Cards that they can use they value higher. Is it fair for value traders if we value our cards correctly, but go by one of their outrageous prices on one of their cards because they love using it in their mono black EDH deck?

    Or how about this – value traders have a constantly moving binder. We WORK to find people who NEED our cards for decks. We've providing a service – and not trading(most of the time) to "complete a deck". We don't need the grindstone in the other guy's binder, for example – we're trading for it for value. If we didn't, the person in this example wouldn't be able to ever get rid of it for cards they DO need for decks.

    "Fair values" are fine and dandy if you like wasting your time, but the rest of us would like to have a reason to trade more often than once in a blue moon when we need 5 specific cards for a deck.

    Quiet Speculation's name comes from the card – the goal of this site, as based on flow of articles and writers here, is how to gain value. Speculation is a part of it, as is trading.

  7. I have managed to gain value on nearly every trade I have been in for over a year now, and while I have almost never gained more than $1 on an individual trade, the opportunity that being honest with everyone has given me has far more than made up for the value that sharks gain short term. I have well over tripled the value of my trade binder, which started off quite high in value to begin with, so that's saying something, and it's all been done on the back of speculation and shear volume of trades. The whole time I have maintained perfect knowledge on both sides of the table, including letting people know exactly how much value I am gaining on the trades. Point is, people come to ME to do trades because they know I more than likely have what they are looking for and they aren't going to get ripped.

    Once sharks are known to be sharks, they better find new waters to swim in, because they aren't going to be welcome back where they were before. Eventually, they WILL run out of ocean because there are way too many people out there that look out for the little guy (myself included, which is why sharks die before they can take a single bite where I play).

    You can disagree with me all you want and say that you have made more than a triple your money on your trade binder all you want, or heck, even look at the Pack to Power trades and use that as an argument against me, but ask yourself this: would you want to trade with a bigger shark than you are or with me? The Bible speaks highly of steady plotting and honesty, but says in no uncertain terms that all you guys that are out there sharking and ripping people off (and that's exactly what you are doing, no matter what color you try to paint it) will end up worse in the end than you were when you started.

    1. I'm the same way. I have people come to me and make an offer that is clearly in my favor by a considerable amount. They are usually totally flustered when I tell them its not a fair trade and to keep picking cards out. If they make a second offer I tell them to keep going if it is still not remotely fair.

      Usually in the future when they get something good they'll come to me first because i'm often the only honest person in the store.

      By being honest with everyone and speculating on what will have value now and in the future I've funded full vacations by selling magic cards that i've traded for.

  8. Lets say you plan to go to a PTQ and you practice for weeks against a gauntlet of decks, you read up on strategy and try to perfect your game. You are in the final game to reach top 8, are you going to remind your opponent that he misses his "may" triggers? Or remind him that he missed a land drop after you knew he drew one? The point is that no you wouldn't even though you have the information and ability to do so because you plan to win, because you feel that you deserve it for all the work you put in to perfecting your game. Dedicated traders put int he same effort.

    When trading most of us spend a great deal of time studying trends and reading decklists in order to find cards that will go up. We watch ggslive for hot new tech before it reaches the mainstream. This extra knowledge that we seek out is our investment and why shouldn't we use it to our advantage. Why should I tell someone that their card actually jumped $6 because of the ggslive stream I was watching earlier, isn't my investment of time in watching card prices to be ahead of the curve worth something?

    Also, please stop confusing legitimate trades between adults with some shark scamming kids or the mentally disabled for $25+

  9. Honest Trader believes that it is unethical to gain in a trade. Why does anyone hear try to convince him otherwise? It is pointless to try to change someone's point of view when it is clearly set in stone. Doing otherwise is just feeding the troll.

    Corbin, enjoyed the article. I am not a trader, and I'm a casual player, so I am clearly not part of the target audience. However, I do enjoy reading about the trades and how to become a better trader. It makes me more aware of what is happening on the rare occasion when I do make a trade. Looking forward to future articles.

      1. I appreciate this opinion. In fact, if you look at my past articles, you'll see I've constantly argued against taking advantage of people in this manner. I'll share any price knowledge I have with my trading partners.
        I hope my body of work (and the other comments on this article) help to show you not every "value trader" is out to rip off his partners.

  10. @ mtgfinance:

    I believe that winning at Magic: the Gathering is only ethical when done within the confines of the rulebook. Letting your opponent miss "may" triggers is perfectly within the rules. I believe that winning in finances is also only ethical when done within the rulebook as well, and before you say that there isn't one, there most certainly is. It's called the Bible. It's rules for winning in finance have worked for well over 2000 years and will continue to work forever, regardless as to any financial situation the world is in. People that violate those rules get punished harshly by the Supreme Judge of the universe. Much bigger deal than some warning or even a DQ at even a Pro Tour level event.

    1. Proverbs 19:1
      Better is a poor person who walks in his integrity than one who is crooked in speech and is a fool.

      Galatians 6:7-8
      Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

      Luke 6:31
      And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.

      Hebrews 13:5
      Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

  11. All this discussion about ethics is great, let's keep it from becoming a religious debate (I'm not saying it is right now).
    I promise you my article next week is going to elicit some reactions, so I suggest prepping yourself now if you think you're going to want to comment on it.

    1. Most ethical texts have nothing to do with religion, I just used that as an example. I'm willing to argue that taking advantage of others is wrong using any ethical philosophy because there is none that accepts taking advantage of others.

      1. Taking advantage of people is ethically wrong. I believe we can all agree on that.

        From this, you draw the conclusion that value trading is ethically wrong.

        This argument is predicated on value trading being equal to ripping someone off. This is false.

        To break it down…

        Lets define value trading as a trade of goods where the monetary value of one side of the exchange is greater than the other.

        Modern day commerce requires that, in order to be sustainable, all commercial trades result in an inequity between the goods sold and the good received. This difference being defined as "profit".

        Therefore "commerce", through it's creation of "profit", can be equated to "Value trading".

        By taking your assumption that "value trading" is "ripping people off", and that "ripping people off" is "unethical" then it logically follows that "Commerce" is "Unethical".

        If you are willing to say that our entire western society, which is built on commerce is unethical, then we can agree to disagree and move on.

        If you believe that commerce is an ethical practice then your position that "Value Trading" is unethical must be false.

        Quod erat demonstrandum.

        1. This all makes me wonder if the "fair traders" (not meant to be derogatory, even if you're silly!) would extend their feelings to other systems of commerce.

          Do you offer more money to the grocery store cashier when the sale price on their food is too low? Do you still buy their meat even if they sell it at a loss?

          If you care to be traded with "fairly" (wow, what a misnomer!), you should care enough to know what your goods are worth.

          Good stuff, Kazabet 🙂

          1. These are not good comparisons. I'm not arguing against doing a deal if everyone involved knows what the cards are worth. I'm arguing against taking advantage of people who don't know what their cards are worth.

          2. @Honest Trader

            Quite the contrary actually. You said:

            "Am I the only one here who tries to make sure a trade is even for both parties because ripping people off is dishonest?"

            Therefore defining "ripping off" as any trade that is not even.

  12. One time many days ago, I was extremely thirsty. Thirsty like I haven't had a glass of water in weeks, throat so parched I could barely speak. Imagine my surprise when I found a vendor on the street offering to sell water! A single bottle of this life-giving elixir, and it was just $5! Five dollars for something that I literally could not live without? When I wanted it as badly as I can ever remember? What a steal!

    Did this guy just not realize that water is necessary for life? He took my cash with a grin, and I could only snicker to myself as I realize how badly I ripped him off.

    Ridiculous? Maybe. I don't think it's so far out of line though.

    "Value" is subjective. Valuing cards by how much they'll sell for on the open market is just one way to do so. Get used to it! I guarantee you'll get more out of your trades if you accept this simple fact.

  13. Corbin, great article; I really like quiet speculation because the writers tend to stay out of the death pit that discussing ethics inevitably becomes. Also, if that was me that started this flame war with my opinion, I'm sorry about that. Not about my opinion, of course, but about the mudslinging that ensued. Looking forward to your next one!

  14. @ Kazabet

    "Modern day commerce requires that, in order to be sustainable, all commercial trades result in an inequity between the goods sold and the good received. This difference being defined as “profit”."

    This is, first, inaccurate, and second, idiotic. In reality the difference is defined as "profit minus time" and ends in a result of zero, or exact balance, which is where the reality that "time is money" comes from, or if you prefer "a worker is worth his wage". In the case of trades, however, there are two people involved, and an equal amount of time involved directly in the trade from each participant. Thus, time is a facet that is negligible in context to trades. As for why your statement is idiotic, if the value of time is disregarded, or simply did not exist, your equation would result in one of two things happening (or more likely both): total collapse of the economic structure, or rapid inflation.

    Now, do you feel that the current economic situation in the USA, was resulted from a lack of ethical behavior, or a failure of the structure of commerce? Based off the assumptions you made those are the only two possible conclusions you are allowing to be reached, and thus you must chose one of them. If it's the structure of commerce, then clearly commercialism is a bad idea and trading for profit is pointless to begin with. If it's ethics, than maybe you should reconsider your behavior in trades to begin with because you are following the same line of behavior that greedy heads of major businesses partook in.

    1. You are correct that "profit" is the by-product of a time investment of providing the service of the transaction. This being what the value-trader invests in order to earn profit. Given that most QS readers exhibit an understanding of at least basic economics, I believed the point of "time is money" was intuitively obvious and did not need to be spelled out. Apparently my assumption was erroneous and I apologize.

      "There are two people involved, and an equal amount of time involved directly in the trade from each participant. Thus, time is a facet that is negligible in context to trades."

      To look solely at the time invested during the trade is false logic. The value-trader has obviously spent much more time trading and building their collection to be able to provide the goods that the prospect looks to acquire. Likewise the value-trader has invested much time into learning the values of cards and the state of the market. This expertise is the result of an investment in time that should also be compensated.

      If the prospect has, as you say, invested equal time building and researching as the value-trader has, then they are on even ground and equally equipped. Neither one should have any advantage.

      The current economic situation is another discussion entirely. It involves many, many variables that require a depth of knowledge far beyond the scope of most readers here, myself included. Though I would enjoy debating the facts in an appropriate forum, it is tangential to topic at hand. Therefore I respectfully decline to comment.

  15. @Honest: Define 'what the cards are worth'. I use MagicCards.info low prices. When buying and selling. Does that mean that if you use SCG, and you buy stuff from me that is underpriced relative to SCG, you are ripping me off?

  16. @ Kazabet:

    I agree with nearly everything you say, and the reasoning that the investment of time that I have put into determining the value of cards across as wide a spectrum as possible using as many sources as I can find time for to come up with a representation of a mean cost of cards I am both interested in and have at my disposal is the very argument I use when trading so as to gain a value off every trade I do. However, there is a difference between a fair wage and ill-gotten-gains. The average trade takes me around 5 minutes to complete (and if it takes you longer than that, you are probably doing it wrong), and I gain around $0.50-$1 per trade on average. I feel this a good wage as it results in around minimum wage for me. However, gaining $9 in five minutes is the same as $108 per hour (I'm using the trade above as my example here in case you were wondering where I got that number from). I don't pay my lawyer that much, and he invested a LOT of time and money to first become a lawyer, then to handle my affairs. (However, I would note that if $9 represented 8% or less in value on the trade, I would be fine with it because that's another representation of net-gain that is considerably both good and fair.)

    In legal terms, using modern definitions, it's the difference between interest and usury. Usury is not only illegal, but is so harshly punished by the legal system that it dictates that the person who owes a debt and is found to be the victim of it doesn't have to pay A CENT of the debt to the collector.

    1. If you take into account only the time of trade, then yes, that would be true, but as has been previously established numerous times, the majority of the work goes into researching prices on a range of sites and sources, and knowing the gambit of prices that the card may have. It's quite clear that you have a propensity for basic multiplication, but I would ask anyone if they have ever had 5 minute trade one after another for hours, making 9 dollars on each trade. All this debate is talking about the current price of a card, without context, and, if such a situation were ever to exist, then there would be no value trading, because every card would have its monetary value printed right on it.

      Take dark depths, for example. several on this debate have been arguing that this site is about speculation, but answer me this: When Dark depths was worth 1 dollar, and you were to buy all the ones you could get at one dollar, with the knowledge that vampire hexmage was coming out, were you acting unethical? You were giving people fair prices at the time for a card that they did not want. You did your research, and knew what was going to happen, and because of that, you were rewarded. This neither unethical, nor illegal. Interest and usury have nothing to do with this debate, because you aren't financing a loan. If a crooked car salesman were to sell you a dodge dart for $3 million, and you were stupid enough to go along with the deal, you have no claim in the civil court. You were offered a deal, and accepted it, and entered into a contract. The only time the interest argument would have hold is if you were to loan someone a card, and demand a Jace, the Mind Sculpter for each day that the original card and interest were not paid off. Seeing as probably no one has card for card financing, this has no hold at all.

      It has been argued that time is money. Time is not the only thing that is money. Time turns into knowledge and information, which turns into money.

      When I am trading, and it is unfair in my favor, I tell my partner the prices, and usually the partner still accepts. This isn't unethical, and this is also what a great deal of the people that come here do. No one in these debates goes up to little kids and mentally retarded players, offer a lopsided trade, and leave with the deal when they don't know what they are talking about. A few altruistically named commentators can't seem to get this concept. (Even though it's quite obvious that it's one person using 2 names)

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