Should Console Scalping Be Illegal? Xbox Series X and PS5 Sales Are Being Abused

KeenGamer: "Console scalping has hit the gaming community harder than it ever has - should it be illegal? Prices on eBay, Facebook, and Amazon are absurd. The gaming community may need to fight back to bring an end to this immoral act. Laws have done nothing, but is there a way to get justice?"

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RaidenBlack13d ago

"Console Scalping" be illegal? And other scalping's cool?
The RTX 3000 cards were scalped even more ...

Jin_Sakai13d ago (Edited 13d ago )

All online sites such as FB Marketplace and eBay should ban high demand product sales until there’s sufficient supply. F the scalpers.

SullysCigar13d ago

Totally agree with this. It's more of a moral issue than a legal one, in my opinion.

FB, eBay and the like should not want to be seen to support this. The trouble is, eBay for example, makes money from this kind of practice - and with their fees being percentage based, the more these scalpers can mug a desperate parent for right before Christmas, the better for their bottom line.

ABizzel113d ago (Edited 13d ago )

Ebay would never they get a cut of the sell, and the scalpers are just doing what almost every other company does daily and make millions / billions on the population. It sucks but this is capitalism at its finest and instead of buying just wait.

I honestly wouldn't be surprised if the companies were using 3rd party resellers to sell their cards for more than MSRP at this point considering high demand is, and not restocking in full until this settles down. There's no proof of it, but again greed can make people do some backhanded things. Why sell our GPUs for $600 when people are willing to pay $1,500 and up to $2,000 right now.

Just don't be stupid or desperate, and wait.

Spartacus1013d ago

They wont ban anyone unless they get review bombed for not having the ban in place

neutralgamer199213d ago


Places like ebay get high profits the more a item sells for so I don't think they care. It's like when this pandemic started and people were charging like crazy for hand sanitizers. Did y'all forget how people were selling bathroom paper towels haha

Dee_9113d ago

are there really people paying over msrp? im more annoyed at those people than the scalpers and bots. Like seriously, Sony and MS will flood the market with consoles by the end of 2022, so why would you pay above msrp just to get it early and play a hand full of games? That makes no sense. I don't really care either way I was going to wait before I get new consoles.
Also I wonder how does Sony feel about this? Knowing they sold out of consoles but a lot of people who wanted one, who could have gotten one, didn't because of scalpers and bots. That has to suck for them. Then again they made their money so they probably don't care.

SullysCigar13d ago

^ @Dee_91, Sony will care because if consoles are sitting around in a scalper's lockup they're no having software bought to play on them.

As for why people buy consoles from scalpers, I wish they wouldn't, but if people are buying it as a gift and can't get them anywhere else, they weaken and pay a high price. People are dumb!

itsmebryan12d ago

People should stop buying them and the prices will come down. I went and got a new TV and will wait for supply to catch up. The Q80T I got is a big image upgrade from my old 1080p DLP . So, I'm fine with my X1X for now. I might even get a bundle cheaper and they will work out the bugs later.

UltraNova12d ago

Prohibit reselling of high demand electronic devices during launch period(~3 months). Problem solved.

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northpaws13d ago

The most efficient way to kill off all scalpers is super simple... don't buy from them, if they don't make money out of it, then they won't do it the next time.

ABizzel113d ago

This, or waste their time bidding on the products and canceling the order or bid, that way they have to drop the price down to something more reasonable so some other fool buys it, or return it and get their money back.

neutralgamer199213d ago

Exactly hold off and wait few months. We will be able to get it for MSRP and systems would be updated and bugs/glitches would be fixed

Seraphim13d ago

the problem is they will because far to many people do and will pay whatever price. That guy with 42 PS5s. At 500$ profit he raked in $21k on those 42 PS5s alone. I've seen plenty of other posts of bot buys ranging from 8 to roughly 29 as well. And when there's that much money to be made and people to spend it we will never curb the issue. At least not when we allow bots and multiple orders.

As others have said I'd like to see ebay and other places ban the sale of new products such as consoles or even graphics cards for the first 3-6 months. Though ideally these companies would come out with ample supply day one to help combat this. From what I can see it appears Amazon US pulled the option to even sell a PS5 by a 3rd party. All of amazon should be doing the same thing. Also why can't retailers just do a limit of one per payment method/address.... Maybe take it a step further and have a master list that retailers share to flag and cancel multiple orders. Same reason why ebay won't ban sales. Greed. it's all about making that money. Walmart doesn't care long as they get a sale and since they seem to be the only retailer getting them. I'm sitting here constantly refreshing every retailer every night. Even Best Buy who have put up multiple open box units is appears bots are scooping those up. it's also pure greed as to why these people use bots and scalp. and don't site supply and demand because that implies that the consumer/end user is the one purchasing. That is not the case with scalpers. They are helping create an even larger deficiency for their own gain. And don't cite capitalism either. Before the internet people bought what they needed/wanted. We didn't have bots and people loading up on a product for profit. By definition scalping is not capitalism.

Noskypeno13d ago

But some stuff should be illegal, even tho I'm not for complete dictatorship. For example, Uhaul in San Francisco charges 5 times the rate to move out then to move in because everyone is moving out, which leads to people turning to moving companies that aren't legit and some even holding the belongings hostage.

And with this situation, Bezos is a jerk for cancelling a bunch of pre-orders, but he's a jerk in general so... yeah screw that dr. Evil wannabe.

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Teflon0213d ago

Ban? Hell no. That's not fair for the ones who buy and end up not wanting or say my cousin wants and I grab an extra for them. They can't see it as any different. They got the 1 per household rule already. The most they can do is keep a track on ips or something.

What they should do is, ban it on a marketplace level. Where within a console/graphics card etc release, the first 2 or so months you can't sell on these sites or anything

Seraphim13d ago

the problem is they don't have a 1 per household rule. Nor a one per payment method, account, etc. Don't mistake only being able to add one to your cart as a limit of.

rlow113d ago

Passing a law would only work if it forced retailers to take measures on their own websites. Funny how big retailers do a minimum on combating this, yet they make next to nothing off the consoles. The scalpers wont be buying the extras and that's where the money is at for the stores. So they're basically shooting themselves in the foot and on top of it doing a disservice to their customers. But tough situation that's for sure.

Rude-ro13d ago

As in your point is logical...
ps5 accessories are sold out too..
Every gen this happens... but not to the extent for Sony where the headphones and controllers sold out
Just imagine if games did not go digital or some would sold out too I bet.

Profchaos13d ago

We have laws in my country to prevent it however it's only policed as far as concert tickets and toilet paper rolls at the height of covid.

TheOptimist13d ago

Welcome to reality, a society so deep in the shit of capitalism and materialism where the rich, dumb/selfish and impatient drive the economy.

It's an open market, people can do whatever they please. Since you can't control 7.2 billion people and dont have the resources for it either, all you can do it suck it up.

instantstupor13d ago (Edited 13d ago )

I agree with the first part, though disagree with the 2nd.

While it is an open market, the US already has laws in place for "essential" goods - most recently, we saw a lot of sellers getting banned or fined for selling toilet paper/hand sanitizer/etc for many times the MSRP. There's no real reason we couldn't have something in place to help at least curb scalping behavior on the whole. There are other similar scenarios where costs above MSRP are either sensible or necessary - like intentionally collectable or limited run products - but I think I have a potential solution. I haven't thought this through further than this comment, so holes may be poked through it under scrutiny, but here's the gist.

I think we could probably have a law in place for products where for the 1st 6 months after release, any product you sell must be at MSRP or below. That way you could set up something for sites like eBay that could query a product database to find the MSRP & launch date. If you try to list above, it just disallows that unless it notes it has been more than 6 months. If big places like eBay and FB Marketplace disallowed it, the value and ease of scalping would likely be limited enough that it might not even need to enforced on smaller sites. The more people who get the product they want, the less strain there is on retail/supply chain. And 6 months would give plenty of time for supply & manufacturing to meet a good portion of the "actual" early demand. Feels like it could work, or at least help ease some of the most egregious scalping anyway.

dragon_rocks13d ago

People will easily bypass that by bundling it with old stuff and overprice the older stuff or will put a signsture on the box and sell it for higher price saying cost of their autograph etc. etc. As long as there are people willing to buy stuff at higher price the scalping will continue.

specialguest13d ago

I don't like scalping, but to have a law for non-essential items is something I'm totally against. No one owes you a chance to get these non-essential items at fair cost, because it was sold out. It is up to the retailers to set up a way to limit scalpers or make it difficult or not worth their effort to stay in the scalping business

instantstupor13d ago (Edited 13d ago )

@specialguest - How anyone could be against scalpers, but for a system that allows them to thrive - see our current situation - is a tough one to reconcile. Kinda sounds like you're a closet scalper lol.

I don't know why if you hold the opinion that no one owes you a chance at items at a fair cost, that that ends at essential items. If we let the free market work as it does, then essential items should be held in the same regard. If everyone was on an even playing field, scalping probably wouldn't likely be quite as much of an issue as it currently stands. But the playing field ain't even.

Scalpers have bots and all sorts of crap to allow them to buy units at the speed of light, fractions of seconds after a page goes live, automating the process, picking up multiple units. Your average consumer cannot do that, so the system is being completely gamed.

The retailers don't care if a scalper buys a non-essential product or someone else does - they get their money either way. They have no incentive to spend the money or effort to make scalpers lives more difficult. eBay doesn't really either, as they get a cut of the obscene sale prices as well. It would practically have to come down to a law to stop it. I don't know why a 6 month moratorium on new products is a bridge too far.

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SmokinAces13d ago

Probably hard to enforce, the best way to stop scalping is to not pay scalpers, stick them with the units they bought and the money lost and perhaps it will stop, but when people pay them two to three times the price they'll just keep doing it, we have the power to stop them, dont buy from them.

ziggurcat13d ago

"Probably hard to enforce"

Queues can be set up, and limit it to one per person.

SmokinAces13d ago

Trust me scalpers are smart enough to work around those measures and have.

GottaBjimmyb13d ago (Edited 13d ago )

They have nothing to lose because they have return policies covering their buts until february and can just return unsold units. It is a no risk scenario for them

SmokinAces13d ago

And that's fine as they still make no profit at all doing that and have to deal with the inconvenience and then they can go onto the store shelves and be sold to people that want and deserve them for the regular retail price..

GottaBjimmyb13d ago (Edited 13d ago )

@smoking there is almost noone who got more than 10 who hasn't sold at least a few, there is still a profit. The stores are to blame TBH. Can't say 1 per customer then let people pickup 50 in store or ship 50 to one address.

SmokinAces13d ago

Ok you're flip flopping your comments now, you suggested they would just return them to which I said they'd make no profit doing that, now you're saying they're selling them and making a profit, please pick one or the other for your argument. Look I dont disagree with you that the retailer plays a large part in the problem but again the short term solution is for us the consumers to not pay theses people their ridiculous asking prices.

GottaBjimmyb12d ago

It is not flip-flopping, I am saying there will always be some who buy them. Their ABSOLUTE worse case scenario is wasted time and no money lost. But the reality is they are going to sell most of them way above MSRP and at worse maybe have a few left that they can return cutting any chances of a loss. Not a hard concept.

SmokinAces12d ago

And I'm saying if people simply stopped buying from scalpers the problem would go away, not a hard concept either.

GottaBjimmyb12d ago (Edited 12d ago )

@Smoking, but yours is not ever going to be a reality, and like I said, their absolute worse case is wasted time and possibly some gas money

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Knightofelemia13d ago

It not console scalping that should be illegal it's scalping period look at those who scalped toilet paper, face masks, concert tickets, sporting event tickets. If you see a PS5 selling for $2000 on Ebay just avoid it people who buy from the scalpers are sheep simply doing an impulse buy. On the retailers end its hard to enforce I can go to Best Buy buy a PS5 if they say limit one per customer I can either get a friend to go in and grab a PS5 or I can simply go to Wal Mart and grab a PS5 from there. On the selling side like putting a PS5 or Series X on Ebay how are you going to prove that I didn't get that extra console as a birthday or Xmas present I didn't know before I went out and bought one now I have an extra machine. I want scalping to be illegal but to prove it is hard to do unless you're a complete idiot and make a video of yourself buying 5 machines.

Bladesfist13d ago

Yer those who scalp medical equipment at the start of a pandemic are extra disgusting, it's just such a horrible thing to do for profit.