You have all heard the responses on message boards whenever someone has a ridiculously good break.
“Those boxes should have gone to Beckett!”
When something reaches meme status like Beckett’s constant “luck” in pulling amazing cards, you would think that companies would think twice before trying to pull crap like that again. Its not a secret that my hatred for everything Beckett does and produces is widespread. Whether its their highly subjective money making scheme in their grading service, or their horribly innacurate and conflict of interest filled magazine, Beckett presents a disgusting expectation of what the hobby is truly about for new and old collectors alike. Then we get to the box breaks, which have been nothing short of ridiculous parade of amazing pulls, sprinkled with terrible acting and even worse cover-ups from the unethical marketing reps at the companies that provide them with product.
Don’t get me wrong, not every box Beckett gets is a winner. Obviously, the level of stupidity it takes to give them 100% greatness has yet to be explored, but that doesn’t mean that each and every company has used them as a vehicle to hauk their wares in the best possible light. Regardless, if you go back through 2007 and discover JUST HOW MANY of these amazing pulls they have had, the evidence speaks for themselves.
This evidence is so powerful and status of hilarity has reached such a level that Beckett may have finally understood that opening boxes with extremely valuable cards does more harm than good. There was supposed to be a break of 2011 Topps Tribute baseball in the same fashion as there always has been, however after Chris Olds exclaimed on Twitter that they had pulled the best card he had pulled in an “adver-break” during his time at Beckett, things changed. Within minutes another tweet was posted saying the video was fried and would not be shown, my guess is this is what happened.
1. Some ultra valuable card is pulled – most likely a 1/1
2. No reaction is given from the people who pull the card on video
3. video is completed
4. first tweet is posted
5. IMMENSE backlash from “muckraking conspiracy theorists” like myself is sent to Beckett’s twitter
6. PR team weighs options of posting the break or requesting another box
7. decision is made
8. second tweet is posted
In the past, the video would have been posted, and there would have been tons of negative publicity sent the way of Beckett and Topps. However, because of their arrogant belief that THEY and THEY ONLY should be the voice of the hobby, they would shrug off any criticism and expect people to forget because they are Beckett and Beckett is the number one source DAMMIT.
I mean, after all of the cards, whether it’s the numerous 1/1s, cuts and thousands of dollars of cards taken out of the hands of paying customers, you would think that they would just solicit videos from actual collectors buying at the LCS. Fuck no. That isnt the Beckett we know and love.
In a very similar situation, we had the recent release of Upper Deck football, and the highly publicized release of the hobby’s first video card. These cards are so thick, that they cannot be inserted into packs, which means that they have to be cut into the foam that Upper Deck put into the bottom of each box. Not only does it add significant extra weight to the boxes they are put into, but there are numerous claims that these boxes are easily searched for the cards. As you can guess, when Beckett opened their personally provided box from Upper Deck, guess what was inside? Its not necessarily suprising at this point, mainly because of the expectations that many of the online users have for these “adver-breaks”, but the fact that Upper Deck was vehmently denying the searching and providing of this specific box to Beckett is almost as bad. We get it, you want Beckett to get one of the video cards because of how many out of touch collectors they still reach. Its not a bad idea. However, when in the same breath, these cards are claimed to be extremely “rare,” there should be no fault assigned for thinking exactly what I just wrote.
The bottom line remains that these types of situations should not happen at all, but are far from unexpected at this point. I used to keep a list of the cards that Beckett had pulled in their breaks, but I stopped when it got laughable. The companies are JUST as much at fault for this, but you would guess that Beckett likes the attention these breaks give for a magazine that is losing its base of followers rapidly. I fault both sides of this debacle for the clear unethical behavior, and I urge both sides to just give up and let this aspect go. Even if Beckett does have a lucky pull once in a while, the body of evidence prevents it from staying out of suspicion. Because of that, is it really worth continuing this practice?