Excluding and banning traders

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david smith
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Excluding and banning traders

Postby david smith » Fri Apr 21, 2006 6:25 pm

I was rather shocked to hear yesterday that a certain well known and respected trading couple of many many years standing has been told they are no longer welcome at a well known medieval market. Quite apart from the damage to this couple's income, it seems rather strange and uncalled for.

Thinking about it, I know another serious trader who told me a couple of years back that he was banned from that same market, and I have heard of other markets that have apparently taken to recently "playing god" in who they allow to trade.

Now, I can see that there could be perfectly good reasons in terms of for example an inappropriate tent, such as a market trader metal frame with stripy plastic held on with market trader clips if it was supposed to be a medieval market. Or that an organiser might not want someone back who had shat in his hat when he wasn't looking, or had caused trouble by punching a visitor, or kicking someone's dog etc.

I am pretty certain that this cannot be the case in this instance, and the venue is not ( unless things have changed considerably from the last 3 years ) in any danger of running out of space. If anything it was smaller last year than the previous years.

So why on earth would anyone running a market who was still in possession of their marbles exclude or ban perfectly good traders?

You'll note I have carefully not named names :-)

Best wishes
David


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Re: Excluding and banning traders

Postby Scraggles » Fri Apr 21, 2006 6:45 pm

david smith wrote:So why on earth would anyone running a market who was still in possession of their marbles exclude or ban perfectly good traders?


Maybe they had a strop dropped their marbles and want said traders to go and work at a market that does not act that way, can think of a few markets that are more friendly to traders :)



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Postby Pete the Pong » Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:16 am

This may sound very odd coming from me, but I fully respect the right of any organiser to decide who should, or should not, trade at their events.
David is quite right in saying that many "banning" decisions may well be potentially commercial suicide, and I've always personally taken the (I hope professional) viewpoint, that you don't have to actually like someone to be able to work with them.
But an organiser has his or her vision of what "their" event should look like. They are the ones who are ultimately taking the finacial risk of putting on an event and attracting the MOP's. As an extreme example, if they see the event as a large vicarage tea-party then there's no suprise that they might outlaw some of the more pagan stalls (however authentic).
My personal opinion is that if someone doesn't want to work with me, then I certainly don't want to work with them -and after all, there is not exactly a shortage of possible trading events!
In the long term everything evens out, but sometimes a tightly run, heavily selective event may well be very successful JUST BECAUSE the organiser has had the courage to boot out people they don't personally like.
By the way, this "banning" has also happened to me in the past. As a trader, you just curse the idiots and move on!!!!!


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Postby Tuppence » Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:57 am

Have to say I agree with Pete.

At the end of the day, it's up to the organiser how they want to run their event - it's their financial and reputational risk and all that.

Banning somebody may be a good decision, or a bad one, but it has to lie with the organiser.
It may also done for many reasons (not just dislike).

For example, it may be that a venue is oversubscribed in that area (costume and armour being the ones I've heard that argument used with regard to). If there are so many traders at a show in a given "market" (eg clothes, armour, shields, space hoppers, etc) that the pot of cash gets split so thinly that none of them cover their costs, then the organiser will get flack from them all, and rightly so.

Admittedly, I've just heard of some very good, and high profile, (in fact the best in their business), traders being dropped recently from a particular market (again, please note, no names mentioned), and it struck me that the organisers had seriously stuffed up.

BUT, it's up to them. If they have stuffed up, they'll find out, and won't repeat it (hopefully).

Debbie.

(PS have also been banned several times in the past, so am speaking from experience too. You pick up and move on...)


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Postby John Wycliff » Sun Apr 23, 2006 3:10 pm

In my own view the decision on who attends these markets should lay soley with the event organiser. If these people put time, effort and had work into providing quality markets for people then who are we to complain as consumers about the variety or traders present at them. Surley if we didnt like it we would not attend and as far as I am aware there is currently no shortage of people visiting.


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Postby frances » Mon Apr 24, 2006 9:08 pm

Dear David, Don't you know that equal opportunities legislation and laws about human resources and contracts have not yet reached re-enactment.

I agree that it is up to event organisers to decide the type of trader they are looking for. However, they should also advertise what their criteria are so that potential traders know whether or not to apply. If the entry requirements are a secret resulting in traders being rejected for no reason that they know, the result is bad feeling being generated. Surely no genuine event organiser who wishes to remain in business could wish to cause bad feeling due to their poor communications. Bad feeling results in gossip and loss of community spirit, and who knows what losses of future business.



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Postby Laurie Wignall » Tue Apr 25, 2006 10:47 pm

I also agree that organisers must retain the right to ban whoever they like


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Postby X » Wed Apr 26, 2006 8:11 am

Yep... a market is the organizer's train set, and they can play with it how they like.

From a buyer's perspective, variety of traders is good. It's kind of hard on those traders who are in a busy sector (clothes, armour etc) but (selfish me) I don't want to see 97 widget-makers when what I want is a foo-foo valve.

If a trader is banned for personal, rather than business, reasons, the effects are likely to change depending on what that trader would have sold. If that trader is in a niche market (foo-foo valves...) I might not even go to the market if I know they're not going to be there. I'll wait for another market, or order my valves by post. If it's one of the 97 widget-makers who's been banned, I'll just go to one of the other 96, if I'm not too particular. And if I desperately want to buy from that particular maker, I'll either wait for the next market or contact them directly.

Another thing, though - changing traders can be a good idea. Keep a core of the same ones (clothes from cheap to expensive, armour from cheap to expensive, and people selling foo-foo valves, for new re-enactors) but change everything else. Once you've been re-enacting for a while, you go to markets looking for new, interesting little things because you've already got all the clothes and armour you need (you can never have enough foo-foo valves). If it's the same traders every time, you might decide it's not worth going to the market because you already know who's going to be there and you know they won't have anything you want.

But again, if a market organizer makes the wrong decision, it's their pocket that will suffer - and other organizers' pockets that will gain.



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Postby Gothic-Haven » Wed Apr 26, 2006 10:48 am

X wrote: If it's the same traders every time, you might decide it's not worth going to the market because you already know who's going to be there and you know they won't have anything you want.

I can only speak from a personal point of view as both trader and shopper but I find that most regular traders try to vary what they do within their "niche" afterall a girl can't have too many kirtles can she? As we ply our wares to the general public (some of whom return every year) we try to vary what we sell also.. and that way no-one gets bored...


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Postby david smith » Mon May 01, 2006 12:44 pm

I think there's a massive can of worms underlying this whole issue :shock:

I can only speak for little old me, but "playing God" is not where it should be at.

Whilst I fully agree that the organiser of any event is completely within their rights to decide who they accept and who they reject, because there are always going to be situations which require the ultimate sanction to be available even if never used - ( like the cane when I was at school - very rarely used, but very effective deterrent! - now look at the chaos in classrooms!) I don't think "picking and choosing traders" is really very sensible or effective unless you really only want a very small select market.

If there are several costume merchants at an event then they will have to differentiate themselves on price, quality, service. Competition will benefit the customer, the better traders will thrive and survive.

And of course, traders are free spirits and will choose where they want to trade, which will (unless they are not quite sharp) be where they think they have the best chance of taking money.

So "X" 's idea of constantly changing the line up just won't fly.

And then there's the problem of illegal restraint of trade. I cannot as the event organiser dictate what traders sell if I have accepted their application / booking knowing what they propose to sell. I can discuss with them the appropriateness before accepting their booking, but if I accept their booking knowing full well what they sell, I cannot then turn round and say, "Sorry, John, you can't sell wool cloth because Fred sells it."
Nor can I say "Sorry, Rob, you can't sell wooden toy swords because I sell them."

Of course, I could make all sorts of rules in advance and then these are the terms and conditions that traders accept in applying for a pitch, but I'd much prefer to let market forces decide the issues of what is appropriate for any one to sell. I may not personally like candle holders in the shape of fantasy castles, but if Joe Public buy them, who am I to stop them?

So the only real rule is that if it is a medieval event the tentage has to look the part from 5 metres.

Best wishes
David


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Martin Cowley

Postby Martin Cowley » Tue May 02, 2006 8:59 am

good points on both sides,but lets cut to the chase some people just have no sense what so ever (or people skills) and if they want their market smaller and more compact this may be their way of doing it :D :D



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Postby Tuppence » Tue May 02, 2006 12:44 pm

I cannot as the event organiser dictate what traders sell if I have accepted their application / booking knowing what they propose to sell.


But (and I'm writing hypthetically, without reference to any particular trader or organiser), what if a trader books saying they're selling one thing, then turns up selling that, plus about twenty different things.

EG - what if you accept their booking when they say that they will be selling purple flamingoes, and they turn up and start selling purple flamingoes, as well as green elephants and blue turtles and bright pink woo-woo birds, etc etc...?

Debs


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Postby Hraefn » Tue May 02, 2006 1:11 pm

I've noticed that a certain market organiser feels that its their duty to point out the failings and foibles of another certain market organiser at any and every opportunity..........how childish!

Hraefn



Martin Cowley

Postby Martin Cowley » Tue May 02, 2006 1:22 pm

I've noticed that a certain market organiser feels that its their duty to point out the failings and foibles of another certain market organiser at any and every opportunity..........how childish!

Hraefn

surely passing on info about a person whom you share a trade with who is demonstrating bad practices is a good way to let people know that you are a better person to work with,i.e BT will say that british gas is rubbish and they are better which is why people switch such utility companies and its also a good way to big up your own business with out lying or resorting to underhand methods ,and lets be frank "foibles" is a polite way to describe rude and aborant behaviour :?
but please dont think im having a go cos you have every right to your opinion and i arent slagging you off i promise :)



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Postby david smith » Tue May 02, 2006 1:55 pm

I'm afraid you are mistaken, Hraefn, as the organiser responsible in the instance that caused me to start this particular thread is not "the sainted one" but an entirely different organiser.

However, I'm not at all interested in getting into a yah-boo exchange of name calling - you'll have to try a great deal harder than that to annoy me. In fact, I delight in being childish at every opportunity :lol: :lol: :lol:

As to whether or not what I choose to do is effective, well, I just look at my website visitor stats and get a nice warm feeling!

Best wishes
David


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Postby Hraefn » Tue May 02, 2006 1:56 pm

In this case that pre supposes that it is bad practice to decide who you want in your market, which as many posters have pointed out is well within the rights of any event organiser.
On a seperate note Martin have you thought about doing the 'Game Fairs' several I went to last year had specialist food halls (Inc a really good one over in Camarthen), plus the green wellies & 4x4 brigade tend to have more money to flash about than us 'nactors. :)

This one in fact http://www.welshgamefair.co.uk/
http://www.countrymanfairs.co.uk/
This one is scary huge and filled the grounds of Blenheim Palace http://www.gamefair.co.uk/2006/
http://www.seas.org.uk/default.asp

Not that I want rid of you, I'd miss me jerky and smokey cheese too much.

Hraefn



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Postby Hraefn » Tue May 02, 2006 2:10 pm

Sainted is not a word I would use for the..... erm person, and just like to point out that I'm not partisan, I dispise everyone equally :D :P
I just feel that the 'he said she said' style of shamless self promotion is rather unnecessary and a bit playground politics,I much rather stick to 'the see what beautious things I have wrought' version of shameless self promotion.
:)

Hraefn



Martin Cowley

Postby Martin Cowley » Tue May 02, 2006 3:16 pm

LOL cheers for the suggestions H will look into em



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Postby John Waller » Tue May 02, 2006 4:15 pm

Heard some tales at the weekend of traders being 'banned' after dealing with other organisers markets. What goes around comes around. Karma will out.


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Postby Kate Tiler » Tue May 02, 2006 5:50 pm

I'm a great believer in Karma (love the 'My name is Earl' show which makes me laugh out loud...!) but sometimes there is a gap between crap happening to you & redemption or compensation arriving in retribution!

I just thank God I have more than one string to my bow, so when it appeared I had given offence for just daring to ask if I could trade with one organiser, I wasn't counting on that to earn a living.


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Postby gregory23b » Tue May 09, 2006 4:35 pm

FWIW I am glad that there are market with a bit of selectivity.

The good thing about some is they state that kind of thing before hand rather than after the fact, which would be pretty crappy, but even then surely the organiser reserves the final rights of entry.

Frances equal opportunities has nothing to do with it, department stores select the concessions that they have with no problem, it is the same thing.


There are as many cons as pros to an all-inclusive attitude:

Pros - lots of variety, potentially opening the field for more custom, potential for a bigger market

Cons - possibility of too much of the same thing, too much of a variety in quality- yes that does matter to some people who are maybe new but want to buy decent kit, not just what happens to be there.

In the reenactment markets there is surely room for people who want to orgainse their markets in the way they want, one man's business model is their prerogative and in some cases it works.

That does not make them bad markets.

There are markets which by their very selective nature have people queuing up to trade there, that is a good thing, not good for those that don't get a slot though, I accept that, but then so is not getting a tender for a contract you have had for years.

As a small trader with quite specific items I prefer a smaller more focused market where maybe there are fewer visitors but they are of a clear frame of mind of what they are looking for, ie expectations. A big market for me is not necessarily an indicator of any major success in sales.

There is one tangible threat that a well controlled market could help offset:

blatant ripping off of fellow traders' stock, this has happened and is continuing to happen in some quarters.

Just as a one size fits all attitude in general life is rather bland and futile the same extends to markets, ie there are enough permutations to match what people want, the coop or Waitrose, both are very useful, neither universal outlets.


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Postby Kate Tiler » Tue May 09, 2006 5:50 pm

There is one tangible threat that a well controlled market could help offset:

blatant ripping off of fellow traders' stock, this has happened and is continuing to happen in some quarters.


Trouble is that we both know markets where one trader has to work along side another trader who rips off their stock! And this at a 'selective' market too!


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Postby gregory23b » Tue May 09, 2006 6:02 pm

I know but it is more noticeable at a smaller market, but I do think it is time we did something about it.

I personally as a purchaser wont buy stuff off people that are known to do such things, I don't mean by common rumour but by pretty obvious means.

Too much casual reference photography of people's stock is pissing people off, me included, I think such things should not be countenanced by fair organisers, if people want to have reference shots they should be done with permission not an assumption of right.


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Postby Martin Cowley » Tue May 09, 2006 10:50 pm

So guys what your saying is if people are taking pics of my jerky they might cpoy it !!!!! mother funkers !!
seriously,do people do that sort of thing ? :? surely its to small a market generally whether its a big Smiffy Style one or lil LH market are there people who copy like that with out consent ? :shock:



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Postby Vicky » Tue May 09, 2006 11:14 pm

It defintitely happens Martin. Witnessed it myself this weekend (and have seen the results of previous copying too).



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Postby John Wycliff » Wed May 10, 2006 1:12 am

Firstly I would like to say there is some bad gear out there,
And I (my own opnion) would rather that people new or old in the re-enactment game had the opputunity to buy good authentic gear at a good price. I would rather see good gear on re-enactors than bad, the simple reason being that it raises the standard all round and will help to improve this countrys re-enactment scene.

If orgnisers are selective over who they allow to trade at their market, and this is all fairly done I hasten to add, by a process of randon selection, this is a good thing surley because we as purchasers are getting a better quality of products provided and a grater range. I attended a market recently that in my own opnion had a good range of products that was affordable to every range of the market, this is what we should be aiming for surley? I also agree with promoting products from this country and helping the English market, surley no one can complain about that?


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Postby gregory23b » Wed May 10, 2006 5:45 am

Martin
"surely its to small a market generally whether its a big Smiffy Style one or lil LH market are there people who copy like that with out consent ? Shocked"

You would think so but it happens.

I put it down to CBA, Can't Be Arsed to do own research but see a product that sells well and copy it, not on.

I do have some sympathy with record companies in the piracy aspect.


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Postby DomT » Wed May 10, 2006 8:10 am

You would think so but it happens.


oh Yes. I'm happy to know at least 4 armourers well and another couple well enough to have a few beers with (or get woken up in the middle of the night to rescue them for A&E :roll: ).

I've had to explain to at least two of 'em that they cant 'borrow' anothers work to copy from me. Borrow to examine and work out how something was done, preferably talk to the other trader and discuss but not flat copy!
At least two of my armour friends have opened their workshops to others on occasion and shared their skills quite openly. It's just bad manners to copy. It's even worse to walk up and take photo's of a peice while discussing how much cheaper you can make it!

(You'd think I could arange better looking harness knowing all the metal benders I do but armour deilvery times is another thread and besides I LIKE my munition grade kit :wink: )


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Postby Nigel » Wed May 10, 2006 9:35 am

As I know Debs is or should be comatose at the moment (due to finishinf a prom dress) I'll poin this thread out to her.

When she was starting out her pattern for an item she makes a few of was ripped off by another trader. She niavely helped this trader out as in those days she had some spare time. It was a lesson learnt


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Postby Gyrthofhwicce » Wed May 10, 2006 9:48 am

Hraefn wrote:I've noticed that a certain market organiser feels that its their duty to point out the failings and foibles of another certain market organiser at any and every opportunity..........how childish!

Hraefn


Hreafn,
If you care to notice, there were no names mentioned, so could be a number of different organisers. It's well documneted the problems David has had in the past, but i dont personally feel this was an attack on the individual as like i said no names where given.


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