Can we replace FunPub for TF exclusives?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Obakemono, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. Obakemono

    Obakemono Destron Conquistador

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    I don't claim to know all the ins and outs of the relationship between Hasbro/Takara and Fun Pub (any clarification would be appreciated) but I would say that it is fair to call them the only "official" source for collector oriented transformers figures, excluding the odd e-hobby and such.

    Generally we are beholden to them for our "Club" exclusives and BotCon sets, which judging by the reactions here on the boards has been mixed as to the choices of characters they produce (shattered glass... again?). There could well be political reasons as to what Hasbro will allow them to produce. but they do not communicate such to the fan base.

    My basic point here is that this company has a business potential that I imagine any third party company would kill for; Access to Official characters, Hasbro/Takara molds, presumably the Hasbro manufacturing facility's and a Dedicated client base ( pretty much anyone on these boards ). Essentially they have a license to print money, and handled properly could take alot of tension off of HasTak in the collectors market.

    MANY members of the TF community have had serious issues with the current management of FunPub ranging from CC issues , lost/undelivered figures, astronomical international cost of membership/shipping,renewal issues, quality control, lack of correspondence from FunPub staff, The current Money order fiasco and so on. No business is easy to run but also no business should survive simply because the consumers have no where else to go.

    It would be interesting to hear the community ideas for a revamped "Collectors Club", and how they would like it to operate, At best Hasbro would see this (and the opportunity to increase profits in the collectors segment) and move on it, at worst FunPub sees this (we know they are on the boards) and realizes that we have legitimate issues with their business model and are actively seeking ways to replace them.


    discuss.
     
  2. guard convoy

    guard convoy The Big Daddy

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    funpub took over the liscense from 3H Productions, its time someone took it from funpub
     
  3. MegaMoonMan

    MegaMoonMan OFFICIAL MMM REP

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    I feel like Hasbro should be able to handle it themselves.
     
  4. shibamura_prime

    shibamura_prime Jumpin' Jellyfish! Super Mod

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    I'm going to echo what's been said before and that's to vote with your wallet. Unless I see some serious and honest changes at BotCon this year and with the club site/store/customer service/whatever, this is it for me. At this point I'm not planning on renewing my subscription, purchasing exclusives or attending the convention. Petitions can only take you so far, especially if the same people signing the petition are still purchasing their product. If the club is still making money they have no reason to change and Hasbro has no reason to look for greener pastures.
     
  5. Aernaroth

    Aernaroth <b><font color=blue>I voted for Super_Megatron and Veteran

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    Fun Publications currently holds the exclusive license for North America to the official collectors club, official conventions, official convention exclusives, and official mail-away collector's club figures.


    For this to change this license would have to expire, be rescinded, or be ammended/altered somehow. At least that's how I understand it.
     
  6. Obakemono

    Obakemono Destron Conquistador

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    Personally, I would like a move to a system more akin (not exactly like) to the current ThreeA system. where you pay fee once a year for access to the club. your membership nets you a package of goods and Guaranteed ability to purchase any exclusive figures during a specific time period, as well as access to "members only" updates and exclusives. included in the cost of the individual figures is Worldwide shipping (with tracking) and a well designed package. All printed material, catalogs, magazines etc... are packed in with figures.

    this system, I believe would also make the possibility of smaller exclusives a much more appealing option on Hasbro's part, for example the "micron arms" of the new Takara AM series, A well designed web site and a limited order window should make things like Sets or Individual releases of such items a fairly simple proposition.
     
  7. doomboy536

    doomboy536 Universe Onslaught fanboy

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    If anyone is serious about seeing change then they need to read this and do it. Let me repost probably the most important part of this statement:

     
  8. Obakemono

    Obakemono Destron Conquistador

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    interesting? i wonder what would be the most effective way to affect that sort of change on the Hasbro level? petition, e-mails?

    the point has been made that as long as HasTak FunPub is making money that things will not change, and to an extent i believe that to be true, However... Hasbro is in the business of profit making first and foremost. I would hope that if we as a community are able to present them with a viable option the would make them as much or more money (and would cut down on the negative trending) they would seize the opportunity.
     
  9. Secretcode

    Secretcode Keeper of Encarta Veteran

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    In order for change to be made, odds are the contract has to expire naturally and Hasbro would have to be disappointed/angry/wanting change enough to hunt down someone else.
     
  10. grimlock1972

    grimlock1972 "No Mas" My Wallet

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    I understand people being upset and they have a right to be, but I for one would prefer Funpub own up to their mistakes and the clubstore merge with the Hasbro toy shop website and let Hasbro handle the selling shipping end of things and also have the botcon registration ran through their systems as well to take advantage of their sites security which seems a far sight better than what the fan club has now.

    short of that funpub needs to own up to its errors and take major proactive steps to fix them.
     
  11. Reaper Cloud

    Reaper Cloud Dark Wrecker

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    Apparently Hasbro is clueless about the amount of money that is to be made from this club? Or they just want a cut from FunPub and don't want to be bothered with all the work behind running said club?

    One would think that Hasbro would have total control over the Transformers club, and could handle things in a much more professional manner. Plus 100% of the profits would be theirs.
     
  12. Aaron

    Aaron Master of Crystalocution Moderator Content Contributor

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    I don't think that the club is some kind of hidden gold mine to be tapped for wealth and fortune. I would bet that they could trim some fat to do better, but they sure as heck aren't making enough money for Hasbro to come in and take over for a better bottom line.
     
  13. Reaper Cloud

    Reaper Cloud Dark Wrecker

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    Do any numbers exist out there as for how many members the club does have? Do club members have a number given to them once they join? After seeing how high the prices were, even if the club only had a few thousand members...that's a lot of cash!
     
  14. Ikkstakk

    Ikkstakk Well-Known Member

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    All right, I'm going to weigh in here. But I want the record to show that I do so ignoring the voice in my head saying to stay out of it and leave well enough alone.

    I don't know what a "ThreeA system" is, but let me interpret your points how I see them.

    For me, this is the same as the yearly membership fee.

    Club magazine.

    We have this. The specific time period is often very short. I assume you mean you'd like a longer specific time period. Unless you mean you don't want non-members to be able to purchase the exclusives and a membership at the same time.

    Botcon discount? I don't know what you mean by members-only "update."

    Whoa there. Are you suggesting a flat cost for the figure, regardless of where in the world the buyer happens to be? In other words, an American member would pay (for example) $80 for a $60 figure so an international member could also pay $80 for something that would normally cost them $100 or $120? I don't think there would be much support for this among the Americans, and we do constitute the bulk of the membership.

    I personally love the packaging designs they already have.

    This I could get behind. The magazine we get is nice, but I thumb through it and in twenty minutes I'm done, assuming I read everything. I'd almost prefer a quarterly magazine with a 12-page comic plus interviews and articles, or what about this? Instead of selling both of the yearly exclusives at the same time, have a Spring toy and a Fall toy. The Spring toy comes with Part 1 of the comic, the Fall toy with Part 2.

    It would be great if Hasbro would make exclusives to offer through the club. I just don't think they will, and that has nothing to do with whether FunPub runs the club or someone else does.

    Yeah, their website design sucks.

    Whew, I'm spent. I just felt that breaking this down point-by-point was the best way to discuss it. Before I go, let me weigh in on suggestions I've seen that a third-party company like FansProject take over the license: it will never happen. FansProject and other similar third-party companies are infringing on Hasbro's IP, whether Hasbro chooses to acknowledge this and pursue legal action or not. Hasbro would never offer the license to a third-party company, because if they did, it would validate what that company is doing. It would be like if I, as a homeowner, had a thief who kept breaking into my house and stealing my stuff, and one day I caught him and said, "Look, I'm tired of you breaking my windows to get in here and take my things. Here's a key."

    At least that's how I see it.

    And yeah, I know I'm not making any friends with this post. But there's an awful lot of rage directed at FunPub right now, and an apparent lack of level-headedness. I just want to say that I have been a club member since the very first year and I own 48 of the exclusive toys they've produced. And I haven't had a single problem with any of them. I think the creativity behind the exclusives has gotten better every year. And I think a lot of the problems FunPub is having right now can be attributed to how big the membership got in the past year. I know everyone says they've had enough time to change, to get things right, and they've failed. I just can't, in good conscience, agree. I think they've improved since the first year and will continue to improve, despite setbacks, which could have happened to anybody running the club.
     
  15. Nope

    Nope Predacon

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    I don't even use TFCC/FunPub/etc. (although I wish I had gotten Animated Cheetor and Timelines Airazor...), but whatever happens, for the sake of us all, please don't become the next Mattycollector.
     
  16. Sharpfinger

    Sharpfinger Well-Known Member

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    Guys,

    Shipping (international and domestic) costs of TFCC are very high and this Credit Card issue is a big mess. But I feel like we are looking the scene with too much angry.

    Credit Card information being stolen is terrible. But, sadly, TFCC isn't alone with this kind of thing. This happened with TFSource and with bigger companies (which are supposed to have bigger and more efficient security staffs). We ask about an e-mail warning. They sent one stupid mail. We blame this mail as stupid. Now we finally have a real warning mail sent to all customers and major sites. There's nothing about CC issues that can be done by now. FunPub needs to fix their systems and they shutdown their online store until it's done. Let's hope it come back with paypal :) 

    Exclusives prices are high? Yes. It's exclusive stuff. How much E-hobby asks for its exclusives? Of course I would like to have my exclusives with half price. But if the Club does a 100,000 run of some exclusive and sell it for US$5.00 we'll have posts in this same forum blaming the exclusive for not being a real exclusive, the club kill the market, etc... I am not opposed to cheaper exclusives, but we can't expect the exclusive toy with the same price of a regular one.

    Botcon sets... c'mon... there is ANY Botcon set that all the fandom likes? To me we could have other Animated set this year, another next year and... what about an Animated set next-next year? This will make me much more happy than any Classics set. There is people out there happy with Road Rage, SG Soundwave, Metalhawk and others in this set.

    If you want to have a new Club licensee, it's OK. But the new licensee will do Botcon sets that some people will like and some will dislike and the price will be higher than regular stuff and Botcon won't be close to everyone at same time. Let's hope new licensee didn't have problems with CC but this *can* happens. The communication? Well, I guess probably the communication would be better than what we have now from FunPub. But I feel that after all the problems FP have this year they will improve their link to us.

    Let's see what happens.
     
  17. LegendAntihero

    LegendAntihero Banned

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    No, Fun Publications should not be replaced. I like their name and we should remember what they've done for us in the last decade or so. They resurrected Animated last year when CN canceled it the year before. They run the world's best toy show and have brought it to a city near us every year. They gave us the awesome Nexus Prime combiner toy. They replace our TFCC magazines whenever they don't arrive in our mail boxes at no charge to us. They have written some of the best TF comics eve made and have done an excellent job on the interviews.
     
  18. cbff

    cbff Destroyer of Botcon

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    ^ A city near us? Who the hell is US?

    To my knowledge, I haven't had the pleasure of being in that group.
     
  19. LegendAntihero

    LegendAntihero Banned

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    They move the con to a diffrent location every year so they can reach out to as many fans as they can. They've said as much on their website.
     
  20. TrueNomadSkies

    TrueNomadSkies Airachnid's ratservant

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    Or they could just do what Konami did to Upperdeck Entertainment & sue their asses to essentially kick them outa the picture. It could happen haha...
     

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