Last month, when Topps Football came out, it was pretty odd to find the green cards in the pack entitling the collector to pack of cards to be picked up at their local shop in the beginning of September. These “Kickoff” packs were to celebrate the start of the NFL season and were supposed to be reserved for the loyal customers who helped drive the business.
As with many products, the packs came early to the shops, and much to everyone’s expectations, some of the shops posted the packs on eBay. Because these were not meant to be sold by the shops, even after the official release of 9/5, Topps has started to take action against those people that posted cards or packs for sale.
Here are some of the auctions:
In response, Topps has started calling out people on twitter for breaching the terms of the program, threatening penalties in the way they are considered as authorized vendors. I think this is not only a bold move, but a necessary one, as this type of situation should not be tolerated. These packs were meant for the customers who had pulled the redemptions, and not for the stores to make money off of. There have already been reports of collectors being turned down when calling to check in, and I hope these situations are not inter-related.
Here is a copy of the letter:
“Dear eBay Seller,
We have found our Topps 2012 NFL Kickoff Promotional Products on sale through your eBay account. Please understand that this promotion is authorized for and intended only for in-store execution by Hobby Stores that are Authorized Topps Dealers. These products are not for sale or resale at any value, in any venue, or any retail format. Placing our products on eBay is inconsistent with the spirit of this promotion; therefore, we are asking that you remove them immediately. Further, our Hobby Stores have been given advanced warning about using our promotional materials outside of program guidelines. If we find that your account is in any way linked to an Authorized Topps Hobby Shop Dealer, please understand that the Hobby Store will face punitive action from Topps up to and including suspension of their direct buying privileges from Topps and permanent exclusion from any future Topps promotions. We value our Hobby Stores and respect their ability to execute our programs with integrity. We ask that you please remove these products so that our Hobby Stores can execute this program as it was intended—in Hobby Stores Only.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.
The Topps Company”