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Bad Trader Alert

Discussion in 'Beer Trading General / Help' started by fortsambo, May 29, 2012.

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  1. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    No. That would be even less fair to the organizer. Running a BIF is a lot of work, with zero additional benefit compared to just being in one. Except somebody needs to run it...

    It is the responsibility of the BIF master to collect info, do a bit of diligence (i.e. check against bad trader lists), and then hound users to get their boxes out. Ultimately, there's not much that can be done when somebody goes bad, just like in a trade.

    I will say this though - somebody always seems to step up to help cover an unsent box. I've done it a couple of times myself. It's good karma...

    The riskiest ones are the NOOB BIF's (surprise, surprise), which drove one of the site's biggest BIF organizers away from the game. I started them back up in a much smaller and controlled format. The first one went perfect, the second one is in progress, so we will see if they continue...

    IMO, BIF's are much more fun than trading. The completely unknown and random nature of the box is just awesome. Picture the excitement when you know a box is landing, and now triple that when you get home and see a giant box from some random state. It's like an entire box of extras, and I've gotten many of my rarest beers through BIFs.
    jconrick1, adamdd, cavedave and 3 others like this.
  2. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I disagree with this. There's no glory in running a BIF.

    Yes, if a person got screwed I'd certainly do my best to help them, but ultimately why would anyone ever willingly take on the risk of running a BIF for zero benefit if they had to be responsible for every person sending a box?
    jconrick1, aasher, dejrrma and 3 others like this.
  3. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    So, if one person gets screwed after the BIF organizer set everything up, checked references, etc. he just says "Ah sorry, that sucks." I think not. That's his responsibility to get the lone participant something. Whether he takes that task all on himself or rallies other BIF participants, that person is owed a box.

    It's a risk you take, and should accept, running a BIF.
  4. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    So you are saying that the participants should take on no risk? I guess I just don't understand the logic of why the person running the BIF, who is already going above and beyond the call of duty by running the BIF, should take on 100% of the respnosibility and the participants take on 0%. That makes no sense at all to me. If this is what you genuinely believe, then please explain why you think anybody would ever want to run a BIF? The answer is they wouldn't, and thus BIFs would not exist.

    A BIF is just a series of trades. By signing up to a BIF a user assumes the same risk as they'd take with a trade. End of story in my mind.
  5. jsilva

    jsilva Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Thats how i understood it and in other bifs ive seen or joined if someone gets stiffed then there is something done to help make it right. Although thinking back one participant sent me 2 locals to help ease the pain which was nice but i was still out the other 10+ bottles and the $30 to ship a 12 bottle shipper it sucks.
  6. seeswo

    seeswo Member

    Location:
    Ohio
    I don't agree that this is an established truth. Effort - yes. Publicity - yes. Actual responsibility to get beers to the person - no. If someone who runs a BIF does this, I feel as though they have gone above and beyond the minimum expectations. Further, you are implying that by checking references of participants, the organizer is vouching for each member, as though either they know everyone in the BIF or that checking references means no one can possibly flake. I just don't agree with that. Running a BIF takes a lot of work. This condition really disincentivizes doing so.

    All that said, I would almost certainly send the person some beer and rally others to do the same. But to say it is an established requirement - I think not.
    cavedave and cbeer88 like this.
  7. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Fair enough. I guess I've just been lucky all BIF organizers I've been part of have essentially made it their responsibility to ensure someone who didn't receive a box, actually got one. Not one of them washed their hands of it.

    That wasn't my implication, if it came across that way. Checking references is just part of the due diligence, not a fact that no one can flake. My point was even with checking references there's always a risk everyone's taking (i.e. possibility of flaking).
  8. Steimie

    Steimie Member

    Location:
    Michigan
    That's crap.

    I'm in the aforementioned Noob BIF that cbeer is running right now. I have no concern that my box won't show up. Cbeer has done a great job organizing this and making sure that everyone understands what's expected of them. The communication has been exemplary. Those are the things that, as the organizer of the BIF, he's responsible for.

    If for some reason my box didn't show up, I would never expect cbeer to send me anything. Would it be his responsibility to send me something if my box showed up with a bunch of broken bottles? Would it be his responsibility to send me something if the person who sent me the box didn't follow the rules of the BIF and I ended up getting a bunch of mediocre beers that I can get locally? How about if the other participant
    sent me a bunch of six month old IPA's?

    No. Of course not. He set it up, he checked against bad trader lists (and maybe did reference checks), collected info, sent out all the info, posted messages and reminders regulary. THAT'S what he's supposed to do. To suggest that he's somehow responsible for righting any wrongs perpetrated by the participants is ludicrous.
  9. With running one for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, sometimes you have to allow someone with very little trade history. It's just the nature of the beast when trying to get every team represented. The requirements go 44, 66, 88, 122 the farther a team went, so its really not that much to hit the minimum. No one wants to run a poor BIF.
  10. FTowne

    FTowne Member

    Location:
    Missouri
    Thanks again for taking a gamble on me and my limited trade history with this BIF! As a participant it was fun, but I'd hate to be the guy sticking his neck out putting one together.
    sliverX likes this.
  11. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Nope, that would be the sender. He actually sent you a box. I'm talking about someone completely bailing (i.e. someone sent out beer, but never got beer in return). I still think it's the organizers job to get that person missing beer, whether or not he is actually sending it, like I said. As the organizer he has the responsibility to make it known you didn't receive a box. If he wants to pitch in sending, great. If not, his job is to get the word out you have no box and hopefully rally the BIF participants to step up.

    Really, this is a moot point because whenever someone doesn't get a box they end up getting one anyway. If the organizer knows you didn't get a box and simply walks away acting like it never happened, that's a problem.

    Again, I've never been in a BIF where the organizer didn't do something to get someone missing beer.
  12. If a box of beer is going to ruin me financially(even if I'm not expecting to send one), I have some other issues I should tend to.
    Everyone has to start somewhere. And you're welcome to join in any beer games I'm involved with.
    libbey likes this.
  13. Steimie

    Steimie Member

    Location:
    Michigan
    Note to self: Don't run a BIF. Ever. Apparently doing so makes you a babysitter for all participants.
  14. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    A babysitter? No. There's a general trust in the community and not every little movement needs to be watched like a hawk in the BIF. But when something goes wrong (like someone not receiving a box), I think the organizer's attention should be there, no doubt.

    If you sent out a box in a BIF and never received one in return, you're okay just writing it off and moving along?
  15. Steimie

    Steimie Member

    Location:
    Michigan
    OK, seriously...this is getting tiresome.

    Would I want something done? You better believe it. Would I expect that the organizer would the one to do something about it? Hell no.

    Dude, when someone cuts me off in traffic, when they fuck up my order at the drive-thru, when the telemarketer calls me while I'm making dinner, when it rains while I'm at the beach, when I don't get the job I interviewed for, or when anything else in my life goes wrong, I WANT something to be done about it. Do I expect that there's a person out there whose responsibility it is to make sure that some sort of "justice" is done? No. Shit happens. It sucks, but that's just the way it goes sometimes.

    You're right--if I didn't get a box b/c the person that was supposed to send me one never bothered to do so, I assume that others in the BIF, maybe even the organizer, would take it upon themselves to do something to make sure I got some bottles. But that's a far cry from saying it's the organizer's responsibility to make sure a box lands on my porch.
  16. OneEyedJack

    OneEyedJack Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Sam,
    I had pretty much the same exact experience with this guy. Took two months to get my box. Same excuses: new batch of Dreadnaught coming out next week, week goes by, I ask him for an update, he apologizes, says that a newer batch was coming out next week, etc. He strung me along for close to two months with these excuses and when I finally did get my box, the Dreadnaught tasted like it was 6 months old. Since I got my box, I didn't want to out the guy, but since it seems like this is a common occurrence with him and not an isolated incident, I say add him to the list and there's no shame in outing him.
  17. slaphappysnark

    slaphappysnark Member

    Location:
    California
    You are saying two different things here--there's a big difference for being responsible for getting the word out that someone got stiffed (and perhaps encouraging people to step up and help out) and being responsible for actually getting that person beer. I do think that it's important for the BIF organizer to confirm that everyone got their box, rather than just handing out names and addresses and quitting BA or something. But they definitely do not take on 100% of the risk for all of the participants, and I can't imagine having that expectation of any of the awesome folks who are generous enough with their time to organize the fun for the rest of us.
  18. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Agreed. I never said the organizer had to be the one to get the beer on their porch, however, in the grand scheme of things I think it's their responsibility to somehow get beer to them. Whether it be sending themselves, asking the other BIF participants, posting a thread about the "non-sender," etc. That's doing their due diligence to get them their beer. They did something to remedy the situation, that's all you can ask for in an organizer. My point was they simply need to have some part in it, one way or the other. If my original post came across as implying the organizer is the one sending them beer, that was misunderstood then.

    Again, you're misunderstanding what I was saying and if it came across misconstrued, I apologize. See above to what I meant. I agree, I'm tired too :)
  19. AleWatcher

    AleWatcher Member

    Location:
    Illinois
    I had a guy bail in the first BIF I ran.
    I sent the recipient a box and talked my regular trading partners into helping out as well because the guy live in OH and there was a big distribution overlap.

    In subsequent BIFs I was more strict about the people I let participate. I forced newer users with a less solid trading history to ship the week before and gave strict instructions that no one should ship to them until their box landed safely. Any person that I personally had a bad feeling about was not allowed in.

    In these other BIFs I had no problems, but if I did have a trader bail, I would have been under NO OBLIGATION to cover his box. It is not EXPECTED, but here's how I look at it;

    *if the host let anyone in and some one got screwed then at least some blame lies with the host.

    *but the blame also lies with the other users-- when you are signing up for a BIF look at the other people that are trying to join! The host cannot be expected to know every single Ba user! If you see someone that is questionable, or has no verifiable references, ALERT THE HOST via message. (I have sent many messages advising BIF creators not to let a particular user participate-- and in my BIFs I ask the community to uphold the same vigilance).

    *if the host did everything in their power to set up the BIF in such a way as to minimize risk, how can you possibly fault them? In a BIF I'm still running I had Mikesgroove (a guy with over 800 trades) suddenly disappear and rumors surfaces of financial issues. I shouldn't have to cover for a user with 5000 reviews, 800+ trades, and 5+ years on the site! (luckily the BIF got on track again).

    *if the host DIDN'T take any precautions to prevent shitbags from participating then I think he should try to help out the burn-victim with a box--- but it's not a requirement and he isn't a "bad trader" if he doesn't. He is simply some one whose BIFs I wouldn't join in the future. I've seen it happen; a host posts in reply to a users claim of never have gotten a box with something like, "shit that sucks!" That makes them sound callous and uncaring, almost like, "sorry you got screwed but i got my box..."
    The host needs to HOUND the person relentlessly til they ship out.

    The bottom line is this: judge people based on their actions, not the actions of others; the host cannot control what participants do. He can only attempt to minimize risk and offer to help should the need arise.


    After reading my own post I feel like I'm missing something:
    I'm assuming the host would be some one that actually cares that people don't get screwed.
    I could make a strong argument for outing a host as a "bad host" or "lousy Ba" if;
    1). There was no form of screening for participants.
    AND 2). Some one gets burned and the host doesn't try their damnedest to straighten it out with parties involves.
    AND 3). The host doesn't at least offer to help replace a few bottles.

    But having all 3 of those conditions occur at once seems most unlikely.
  20. biglobo8971

    biglobo8971 Member

    Location:
    Minnesota
    I have hosted numerous BIF's, and not one hiccup. I beleive every one that I have ran as been pretty much flawless and a lot of fun to be in. I as an organizer try to do my due diligence by "hunting down and pestering the shit out of a person if they do not respond to beer mails" I even go as far as asking for more information than needed for people who I dont feel like have enough history on the site. I even "cyber" stalk them by going to their profile and looking at their posts. Does this give me all the info I need? no, but it helps give me a type of feel for the person. And absolutely use the provisional status, let them know that their box wont ship until theirs has landed. This helps a ton, and helps prevent people from getting screwed over.
    I have however, been screwed in a fantasy football league I was asked to run. A guy (who was an active trader with whom I had seen often) begged to be in. So I did, he was doing fine until injuries decimated his squad, its fantasy football, shit happens. So instead of ponying up his box, he decides not to log on any more. As the organizer, I felt bad that someone flaked out on the league and screwed someone over on beer. The winner of the league was local, so I took care of the box he was owed. I didnt feel like it was my responsibility, I felt like it was the right thing to do. So to each its own, and cheers to ya karma, hopefully you will forever be on my side.
  21. dvelcich

    dvelcich Member

    Location:
    Illinois
    This really sucks to see. I was at a tasting with Dan8181 a couple years ago, and he seemed like a great guy. I hope this gets worked out.
  22. slaphappysnark

    slaphappysnark Member

    Location:
    California
    I still don't even think it's their responsibility to get beer sent to the person by anyone (which is what you just said again in the first sentence), just their responsibility to put some effort into supporting the person who didn't get beer (which is perhaps what you actually mean?) If the organizer hounds the person who didn't send and then lets the other folks in the BIF know what happened, but no beer actually comes of any of their efforts, I think they have fulfilled their obligations. That scenario is quite unlikely, though, and I think we pretty much agree, at least in practice.
  23. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    That's what I've been trying to say. Drawing from experience, once they fulfill those obligations, beer ends up on the participants doorstep in every scenario I've seen. So, really, in the grand scheme of things they did what they need to do, in order for beer to get to their doorstep. Whether or not the organizer sends, they still got them beer. Never have I seen someone in a BIF end up empty handed.
  24. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Member

    Location:
    Georgia
    I though there was an unwritten rule of empathy...I've never participated in one but before this thread I could've sworn it was an accepted norm that when you enter a BIF and someone flakes the rest of the participants including the host pitch in to help out. I guess if I ever ran a BIF I would state it in the rules then. Everyone should be responsible for getting everyone a box as no one would like to leave a BIF without a box.
  25. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Yes, there definitely is an unwritten rule to take care of the community. I've personally sent out a couple of boxes to people who got screwed. But, there is no formal obligation. In practice, I have never seen somebody get screwed in a BIF without numerous others stepping up to help out - in fact, I feel like the person who gets screwed on the BIF usually ends up making out better than anyone else. :)

    I do think it's important that people don't go into BIF's with expectations that it is a risk-free endeavor though. It's no different from a trade...
  26. ShanePB

    ShanePB Member

    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Amen. The generosity is usually insane.

    Completely agree. I never meant my previous posts to imply that.
  27. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Member

    Location:
    Georgia
    Completely agree except that IMO your expectations should be that its risk-free regarding getting screwed and not getting anything like when you get screwed in a trade. If you ask me the only risk should be that you might have to spend a little more than you planned on because you end up pitching in to make up for someone that flaked.
  28. sonoma01

    sonoma01 Member

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Sorry for the bad trade Sam. Looks like he was just on 40 minutes ago as well reading this exact post. Let's see if he makes good,on the deal now or just jumps ship.
  29. Photekut

    Photekut Member

    Location:
    Tennessee
    I'm glad at least his computer is back up and running then. o_O
    BigTomZ and tewaris like this.
  30. Levitation

    Levitation Member

    Location:
    California
    he's on facebook and shows activity on may 21, 24, 28th (monday) and 30th (today). guess it was working in fits and starts.
  31. BigTomZ

    BigTomZ Member

    Location:
    Virginia
    Yeah it shows at 3:50 he was looking at this thread. I wonder if he will try to make it right, or just disappear.
  32. lucas1801

    lucas1801 Member

    Location:
    Massachusetts
    His printer is probably down, hard to ship without a fedex label and all...
    yamar68 and Skye1024 like this.
  33. ASUBeer

    ASUBeer Member

    Location:
    North Carolina
    Or his phone. Or iPad. Or his work computer. Or a public library computer. Or a FedEx kiosk computer. Or the work station at a hotel. ;)
  34. Domeshot14

    Domeshot14 Member

    Location:
    California
    I bet he's out of ink, and the cartridges are on back order.
  35. writerLJBerg

    writerLJBerg Member

    Location:
    Oregon
    :cool:
    maximum12 and Pahn like this.
  36. Pahn

    Pahn Member

    Location:
    New York
    actually laughed out loud at that.

    re: BIFs, i've never been in one, but i suspect that some of the confusion / disagreement is coming from people having been in them with an expectation that everyone gets taken care of and it not usually ending up a problem.

    e.g. JohnTrader believes it's an unwritten rule that the BIF-runner takes care of the stiffed-trader. however, the few times JohnTrader has seen someone get stiffed--if ever at all--people in the BIF jumped over themselves to make it up. while JT thinks that the BIF-runner has an obligation, he respects the generosity of all the other traders involved and doesn't question it--in fact, he probably joins in and passes on a bottle himself.

    JT never has occasion to discuss this BIF-runner responsibility until the present day, when apparently more and more people are getting stiffed in BIFs and no one's making up for it. (no reason for JT to ever "argue" about it with TT--TomTrader--who thinks that it's everyone's [or no one's] responsibility).


    ----

    p.s. there's a moral to be drawn here, by the way, about the idea of "taking responsibility" in a group where everyone looks out for each other. the concept of blame loses a lot of its utility.
  37. InebriatedJoker

    InebriatedJoker Member

    Location:
    Ohio
    Sorry to hear about this Sam ,
    hopefully the guy does the right thing and sends you your box (But I doubt he will ) ,also he should add some great extras for the inconvenience.
  38. fortsambo

    fortsambo Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    In all honesty it's all good... It's worth one bad trade to meet all the awesome BAs out there that I have traded with (75+). I've had many show insane generosity so will not let this put a bad taste in my mouth. Just wanted others to beware.
    Domeshot14 likes this.
  39. cosmicevan

    cosmicevan Member

    Location:
    New York
    150%

    phone number is essential.
  40. cosmicevan

    cosmicevan Member

    Location:
    New York
    didn't we have this discussion in the unwanted wales BIF hauls thread?
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