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Mycomicshop.com / Lone Star Comics SUCKS! Options
Xylob
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 9:27:19 AM

Rank: Beyonder
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 8/12/2007
Posts: 7,889
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Using the words "retard" or "retarded" when referring to somebody who is mentally or physically handicapped/disabled is disgusting, rude, crude, unconscionable, and flat-out f@#king wrong.
Using them to describe somebody who is an ass-hat is fine.

In this case, "mentally challenged trailer park hillbilly that cleans port-o-pottys" would have been more appropriate.

Here's an explanation for you: Do's and Don'ts Watch the whole thing, best part is around the 2 minute mark. NSFW BTW.
Lewis Black has a much better way of explaining/conveying this, but I can't find it online.

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Xylob's Most Wanted:

G.I.Joe Special Missions TPB 2
Tales from the Transformers Beast Wars: Critical Mass
Youngblood Bloodsport #2 maybe? can you help identify?
lbej
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 9:52:58 AM

Rank: Large Noggin
Groups: Member, Moderator, Subscriber

Joined: 6/7/2009
Posts: 301
Points: 903
Location: North Carolina
Xylob wrote:
Using the words "retard" or "retarded" when referring to somebody who is mentally or physically handicapped/disabled is disgusting, rude, crude, unconscionable, and flat-out f@#king wrong.
Using them to describe somebody who is an ass-hat is fine.

I tend to agree. This is one that puzzles me. It seems like a few years ago there was a meeting I didn't get invited to where it was decided 'retarded' was to be treated like a curse or a racial epithet. For the record, I have a son with developmental problems and I'd fight anyone who called him retarded. On the other hand, if someone called me retarded I wouldn't care one bit. I might fight that person anyway, but it'd just be for fun.

And we're now fantastically off-topic...

Please make sure you read and understand the forum rules here
RottenArsenal
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 10:16:48 AM

Rank: Supporting Cast
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/28/2007
Posts: 12
Points: 1,401
Location: Texas
lbej wrote:
Xylob wrote:
roguesquad wrote:
...They always grade them as FN or VF too. I don't really care since I just want to get rid of them anyway but its a little suspicious.
Until they list them for sale...


Believe it or not, my experience is they just grade hard. I can track books I've sold (not just consignments) through and they list at the grade they quote, at least as far as I've seen. Every book I've had graded by CGC came back at a higher grade than what MCS gave it. They take the grading risk on sales so they grade hard on purchases. That's what I'd do, and I don't think there's anything nefarious to it.


Here's the problem. At least when I was there, the people that check in the buy/trade orders are usually different from the people that file the comics in the warehouse. Those people may or may not be the same people that then pull the comics back out of the warehouse when somebody else buys them... and then somebody else "checks" them to verify the grade. Then they go to get packaged for shipping.

Back then, The buy/trade check in was usually in the same building as the people that then checked orders later so the chances were better that at least the same pool of people were grading both in and out. Most of the comics are stored unbagged in longboxes out in the warehouse (comics valued over $10 usually got much better treatment... depending on where they were on the $ scale, they might be bagged and boarded in an air conditioned building and the really valuable stuff were in the vault... yes, an honest to goodness vault).

About 10 years ago or so, they built a new warehouse behind the old one and moved a lot of the work out there. Since then, they've bought some of the surrounding buildings and moved various components of the process to different buildings. There is one building (across the street from the warehouse) where all the buy/trade orders go to be unpacked and maybe graded.

Why is all of this a problem? Well, here's a quick breakdown of the travels of a basic comic once it arrives at MCS:
-Delivered to the old building out back and unpacked
-Taken to somebody for grading
-Having been graded and approved, they go somewhere else where people sort them (usually by quickly putting them in large alphabetical stacks based on title)
-once alphabetized, they go into boxes where they wait to be filed in the boxes in the warehouse by one of the warehouse monkeys
-when a particular comic gets ordered by someone, one of the warehouse monkeys goes and pulls it (along with a bunch of others... they print up the pull lists everyday for the stuff that was ordered since the last list was printed)
-the comic goes in to get double checked and then the individual orders are assembled
-then the orders go to get packed and shipped

Now, I doubt that Buddy has changed his philosophy on wages so the warehouse monkeys probably get paid a smidge above minimum wage with pretty much no benefits. It's a high turnover position and usually it's a bunch of young adults with little job experience but thought that working for a comic book shop would be fun. This is also usually the case with the people who are packing the comics for shipping.
The people that are verifying the grades of the comics you order are usually those people that were previously warehouse monkeys but proved to be fairly competent. Although, the comics in the warehouse usually had a color coded post it note attached to the first page of the comic that was visible at the top for easy identification by the warehouse monkeys. The checkers verified the post-it matched the actual condition that was ordered and then they remove the post it (back in the '80's, they wrote the grade lightly in pencil around the issue box and then erased it when somebody ordered it... some of those are still out there)
Pretty much, the only "grading pros" that ever dealt with the comics were the folks checking in the comics they were buying. Buddy used to do a lot of that himself.

So, in summary, the "best" graders check in what you sell them and then the stuff gets handled numerous times by a bunch of low paid employees before it arrives at your house if you buy something from them. Odds of receiving a comic in the condition it was initially graded? Low.
Xylob
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 11:25:05 AM

Rank: Beyonder
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 8/12/2007
Posts: 7,889
Points: 64,288
"Here's another one, toss it over there with the rest... all this crap's the same to me."

Need help with a Change Request?Click here to contact an approver!
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Send an email right away (don't delay!) to helpdesk@comiccollectorlive.com
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Xylob's Most Wanted:

G.I.Joe Special Missions TPB 2
Tales from the Transformers Beast Wars: Critical Mass
Youngblood Bloodsport #2 maybe? can you help identify?
lbej
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 11:29:16 AM

Rank: Large Noggin
Groups: Member, Moderator, Subscriber

Joined: 6/7/2009
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That's a lot more than I knew--thanks for the information. It may be that didn't have a problem when I bought books from MCS for the same reason I didn't lodge too many complaints with CCL sellers: if I can't see and handle a book before buying it, I'm only willing to pay the price I'd otherwise pay for a full grade lower, and that cushions any potential disappointment for me. That's just a rule of thumb I use and in no way do I think a seller (no matter how big) should be let off the hook for overgrading. I'm sure there's some batch grading going on at MCS with the volume they handle. I actually stopped ordering VFNM copies of the cheap books I wanted because my order wouldn't get filled sometimes--I guess that when the books were inspected before shipping they didn't pass muster and MCS doesn't allow substitutions. I always ordered the VF copies instead and sometimes I'd get something I'd grade at VFNM. It worked for me, anyway.

For the record, I'm not disputing any of the negatives others have cited, but my experience with MCS has been positive all around.

Please make sure you read and understand the forum rules here
RottenArsenal
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 1:53:44 PM

Rank: Supporting Cast
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/28/2007
Posts: 12
Points: 1,401
Location: Texas
Once they sold off all their brick & mortar stores, I would've thought the mail order side would have gotten better. But it doesn't seem to have done so.
I still deal with them because I have a bunch of comics that I don't want but aren't worth trying to sell on eBay. I can trade them in for a few bucks and then get stuff I didn't have. And since I collect for content and not value, it doesn't bother me a whole lot.
That said, I rarely get shipments anymore where my comics are actually the condition I ordered. I usually buy "VF" copies because there is no point in buying "NM." Virtually every "NM" arrives with some sort of minor damage, either creasing/damaged corners from being poorly packaged (with 10 pounds of tape), rough handling by low paid warehouse monkeys, or there was something that must have been "missed" in the initial grading (often internal problems like small tears on pages).
If you aren't buying a comic worth more than $6 or $7, don't waste your money on a NM from MCS.
I had one order than was just awful. Lots of creasing/folding on supposedly NM/VF books. But the best was the "NM" copy of Challengers of the Unknown that had a staple missing and the center page detached.
Another time, I bought the TPB of Garth Ennis' Unknown Soldier. About an hour after I placed the order, I discovered that I already had one. Of course, they wouldn't remove it from my order when I asked (which, to be fair, they do inform you that once you complete the order, you can't change it) so I just planned on turning around and selling it back for trade credit (I lose a few bucks, but my mistake). I ordered a NM copy. When it arrived, I took it directly from the package and put it in my longbox I use for storing stuff I'm getting rid of. It stayed in that box until the day I hand delivered the box to MCS.
They graded it "VF".
Atilla2k
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 4:22:21 PM

Rank: Herald of Galactus
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 10/8/2007
Posts: 1,541
Points: 89,065
Location: NY
Peacefuldragon wrote:
Atilla2k wrote:
RottenArsenal wrote:
I've seen multiple people on the interwebz recount their less than productive interactions with Beth Abbott. I'm surprised she still works there. I mean, I worked with her and I left Lone Star over 10 years ago. She was there when I started working there so she's been there nearly 15 years (if not more).
She was unpleasant to work with back then, too.


Beth Abbott is a horrible person with the tact and manors of a retarded trailer park hillbilly that cleans port-o-potty’s!


Please refrain from the use of the word retarded in this derogatory manner.


I have nieces and nephews with developmental problems and would not use that word as a slight towards them, my use of the word as an insult is directed at people who are capable and “choose” not to be such.


Thundercron wrote:
That's right! I think the appropriate insult should have been: "Beth Abbott is a horrible person with the tact and manors of a disadvantaged trailer park hillbilly that cleans port-o-potty’s!"

You also need to publicly apologize to everyone living in trailer parks.

And janitors.

LOL!


We prefer to be called Custodial Engineers...


Ibej wrote:
And we're now fantastically off-topic...


Right, and that topic is Mycomicshop.com / Lone Star Comics SUCKS!

RottenArsenal
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 6:40:00 PM

Rank: Supporting Cast
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/28/2007
Posts: 12
Points: 1,401
Location: Texas
I think my favorite recent change is their shipping policy. No more free shipping for orders over $50. Of course, that wouldn't have bothered me in the past because I could just get them sent to one of the stores for free and then pick them up. But since they got rid of the stores, they did away with the pick up option.
So, even though I live 15 miles away from them, I have no option but to pay to have them shipped.
And the way the shipping lanes work, my order takes like three days to get to me because it has to hit two other facilities before it gets to my house.
lbej
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 7:02:44 PM

Rank: Large Noggin
Groups: Member, Moderator, Subscriber

Joined: 6/7/2009
Posts: 301
Points: 903
Location: North Carolina
RottenArsenal wrote:
I think my favorite recent change is their shipping policy. No more free shipping for orders over $50. Of course, that wouldn't have bothered me in the past because I could just get them sent to one of the stores for free and then pick them up. But since they got rid of the stores, they did away with the pick up option.
So, even though I live 15 miles away from them, I have no option but to pay to have them shipped.
And the way the shipping lanes work, my order takes like three days to get to me because it has to hit two other facilities before it gets to my house.

That bothered me. The free shipping option just disappeared one day. I didn't see an announcement or anything--just gone. I thought it was a mistake at first but I guess not. It actually saved me money, though, because I used to try and get to the $50 level and after that I placed smaller orders. I wonder how the change affected sales, even if it helped the bottom line.

Please make sure you read and understand the forum rules here
Nick18313
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 10:07:21 PM

Rank: Watcher
Groups: Member

Joined: 6/21/2007
Posts: 715
Points: 2,210
Location: Michigan
RottenArsenal, What's a warehouse monkey?

Pull List: Aphrodite IX, Artifacts, Cyberforce, Darkness, Witchblade, All New X-Factor, All New X-Men, Magneto, Uncanny X-Men, X-Force
Tamwood
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 10:12:34 PM

Rank: Herald of Galactus
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 11/13/2009
Posts: 1,627
Points: 148,044
Location: Indiana
Nick18313 wrote:
RottenArsenal, What's a warehouse monkey?


I am. Several times over.

A warehouse monkey is the peon whose job is to work in a warehouse, usually in a non-managerial position. So said, because you could probably train a monkey to do the job better than 99% of the humans working in said warehouses. (I'll let you judge if I'm the 1% of warehouse monkeys better than a primate.)
RottenArsenal
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 10:22:24 PM

Rank: Supporting Cast
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/28/2007
Posts: 12
Points: 1,401
Location: Texas
Tamwood wrote:
Nick18313 wrote:
RottenArsenal, What's a warehouse monkey?


I am. Several times over.

A warehouse monkey is the peon whose job is to work in a warehouse, usually in a non-managerial position. So said, because you could probably train a monkey to do the job better than 99% of the humans working in said warehouses. (I'll let you judge if I'm the 1% of warehouse monkeys better than a primate.)


Yep. I was a MCS/Lone Star warehouse monkey myself until they realized my comic knowledge was better than most of the other people that worked there. Then I got to do things like dig through dusty boxes of comics that had been sitting on the top racks for over a decade. Of course, most of that stuff was garbage, but occasionally I'd find something awesome. Once found a Grendel #1 (1st series, 1983 Comico) just buried in one of those boxes. I think it ended up selling for about $100. I also tried to spend time actually adding useful issue notes (like writer/artist/prominent characters).
RottenArsenal
Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014 10:32:56 PM

Rank: Supporting Cast
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/28/2007
Posts: 12
Points: 1,401
Location: Texas
lbej wrote:
RottenArsenal wrote:
I think my favorite recent change is their shipping policy. No more free shipping for orders over $50. Of course, that wouldn't have bothered me in the past because I could just get them sent to one of the stores for free and then pick them up. But since they got rid of the stores, they did away with the pick up option.
So, even though I live 15 miles away from them, I have no option but to pay to have them shipped.
And the way the shipping lanes work, my order takes like three days to get to me because it has to hit two other facilities before it gets to my house.

That bothered me. The free shipping option just disappeared one day. I didn't see an announcement or anything--just gone. I thought it was a mistake at first but I guess not. It actually saved me money, though, because I used to try and get to the $50 level and after that I placed smaller orders. I wonder how the change affected sales, even if it helped the bottom line.


"mycomcishop" posted this on another message board last November:

"Yes, we stopped offering free shipping 2-3 months ago. We first introduced free shipping at $50 about ten years ago, and shipping costs have only gone up since then. Most orders in the US now instead get $4.95 flat rate shipping. Not free, but not bad either.

We'd rather keep shipping charges more in line with actual shipping costs, than run a large monthly shipping subsidy and make up for it with inflated comic prices.
"

The questions I have are:

1. If you are trying to keep shipping costs down and not lose money subsidizing, why don't they offer local pick-up

2. Are they losing some sales because now that person that has $45 of comics on there order has no incentive to buy a few extra books to get the free shipping?
frozilla
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 12:38:25 AM

Rank: Large Noggin
Groups: Member

Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 358
Points: 1,087
I've had a bad experience with MCS as well, namely that horrible CS Rep Beth.

I had made around 12-15 orders withe MCS before my last one. I particular order was instigated because a comic that I'd had on my want/watch list came available. I jumped on it, ordered it and a few other comics to meet the free shipping threshold. The order processed and this particular comic was not on the order. However, the remaining parts of the order showed shipped. I called and spoke to Beth, who seemed to have had a bad day at first. She was gruff and seemed to be wanting to do something else at the time. Anyhow, I pleaded my case and she curtly replied that orders can't be changed after they're processed. I asked if they should notify someone if part of the order becomes unavailable before processing (you know, like most businesses do). She rambled, repeating exactly what she said before - obviously not giving a darn about any offering of customer service. I told her that I did'nt not want the partial order, which had been charged shipping, since it now didn't meet the threshold of free shipping. She said that she couldn't do anything about it In years of customer service, that is the one thing I've learned that is not acceptable "I can't do anything about it". After going around and around with her, I finally told her that I would take it up with my card company, that if they did send it, I would be pursing some sort of action.

I don't know her personally but Beth is probably one of the last people I would think needs to be in a customer service position. She is terrible at dealing with situations like this and rude to customers. I too was 'banned' from their website after this. I'm glad however - I wouldn't spend $1 with their company any longer.

End result: The order DID get cancelled and I got my money back. However, the banning did occur. So that shows me: YES, that they can cancel orders but feel like they can just bully people into accepting their laziness and ineptitude.

If you deal with Mycomicshop.com long enough, this will happen to you. Be warned.

Big signatures are REALLY annoying.
bovard
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 11:24:26 AM

Rank: Celestial
Groups: Member, Super Seller

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Joined: 6/18/2007
Posts: 2,679
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"Orders can't be changed after they're processed"

A fairly reasonable policy, in some circumstances. I would say the policy was put in place so when a buyer makes a purchase, and MCS packages it and are ready to ship or already have shiped, and then the same buyer places another order soon after the first (hours/days), and then wants that order included with the shipping of the first. That happens alot. But if you pack and ship quickly, you can see the problem.

HOWEVER - parroting policies does nothing to solve problems. It does nothing to help the customer, and is poor business practice. And, in no way resembles customer service.

AND - What about when they (MCS) screw the order up in the first place... missing books, wrong variants, miss graded... etc.

As Frozilla mentioned, a lot of orders reallly do get built around one or two books that the buyer really wants, and if they can't be delivered as expected, then it can be a deal breaker for the whole order.

As a buyer, I want the order I placed, and if part of it is missing, or not as described, then I might not want any of it, and would expect full refund.

I actually have an order right now, for which I can't find one of the books. This does not usually occur, as I keep really close track of everything, but I'm not perfect, and it can happen once in a while. I offered the customer a replacement, or they can recieve a refund for the one missing book, or can get a refund for the whole order. However they want to handle it is fine with me.





Thundercron
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 11:44:13 AM

Rank: Herald of Galactus
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Joined: 9/14/2008
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Location: Vancouver, Washington
bovard wrote:
"Orders can't be changed after they're processed"

A fairly reasonable policy, in some circumstances. I would say the policy was put in place so when a buyer makes a purchase, and MCS packages it and are ready to ship or already have shiped, and then the same buyer places another order soon after the first (hours/days), and then wants that order included with the shipping of the first. That happens alot. But if you pack and ship quickly, you can see the problem.

HOWEVER - parroting policies does nothing to solve problems. It does nothing to help the customer, and is poor business practice. And, in no way resembles customer service.

AND - What about when they (MCS) screw the order up in the first place... missing books, wrong variants, miss graded... etc.

As Frozilla mentioned, a lot of orders reallly do get built around one or two books that the buyer really wants, and if they can't be delivered as expected, then it can be a deal breaker for the whole order.

As a buyer, I want the order I placed, and if part of it is missing, or not as described, then I might not want any of it, and would expect full refund.

I actually have an order right now, for which I can't find one of the books. This does not usually occur, as I keep really close track of everything, but I'm not perfect, and it can happen once in a while. I offered the customer a replacement, or they can recieve a refund for the one missing book, or can get a refund for the whole order. However they want to handle it is fine with me.





Giving the customer a multitude of options to fix the problem is key. Hard for things to turn out badly when a seller does this.
Xylob
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 3:13:59 PM

Rank: Beyonder
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 8/12/2007
Posts: 7,889
Points: 64,288
bovard wrote:
...I actually have an order right now, for which I can't find one of the books. This does not usually occur, as I keep really close track of everything, but I'm not perfect, and it can happen once in a while. I offered the customer a replacement, or they can recieve a refund for the one missing book, or can get a refund for the whole order. However they want to handle it is fine with me.
Wait a minute.... you provided actual Customer Service?!?!?!
What are you doing man? You can't do that in this day and age!!!!! It's unheard of.
Have you gone mad?
Tongue

Need help with a Change Request?Click here to contact an approver!
Problems with CCL?
Send an email right away (don't delay!) to helpdesk@comiccollectorlive.com
615-264-4747
Offices are open M-F 8am-5pm Central Time.
You can also e-mail the Chief Brand Officer directly to try to resolve questions/stuff at steve@golocomedia.com for help with password resets, general customer service questions, store order resolution, credit card store updating, questions about comic books and CCL, etc...

Xylob's Most Wanted:

G.I.Joe Special Missions TPB 2
Tales from the Transformers Beast Wars: Critical Mass
Youngblood Bloodsport #2 maybe? can you help identify?
frozilla
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 6:27:54 PM

Rank: Large Noggin
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Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 358
Points: 1,087
Bovard, I agree that that's reasonable in the sense that once an order is processed that you can't just allow everyone to willy-nilly alter it. However when the order is incomplete, there should be some sort of allowance for options for the buyer. Their response in this case was just simply bad customer service and in the OP's situations was totally unacceptable.

Again, I must caution anyone that doing business with MCS is akin to snake handling. You may get through several attempts but eventually you'll get bit. And when MCS bites, they're highly poisonous. Stay away.

Big signatures are REALLY annoying.
bovard
Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014 10:25:06 PM

Rank: Celestial
Groups: Member, Super Seller

Shop at My Store

Joined: 6/18/2007
Posts: 2,679
Points: 25,687
Location: Earth
Xylob wrote:
bovard wrote:
...I actually have an order right now, for which I can't find one of the books. This does not usually occur, as I keep really close track of everything, but I'm not perfect, and it can happen once in a while. I offered the customer a replacement, or they can recieve a refund for the one missing book, or can get a refund for the whole order. However they want to handle it is fine with me.
Wait a minute.... you provided actual Customer Service?!?!?!
What are you doing man? You can't do that in this day and age!!!!! It's unheard of.
Have you gone mad?
Tongue


How bout it! Must be the heat... going to my head, and making me all Silly

Atilla2k
Posted: Tuesday, June 24, 2014 11:15:42 AM

Rank: Herald of Galactus
Groups: Approver, Member, Subscriber

Joined: 10/8/2007
Posts: 1,541
Points: 89,065
Location: NY
frozilla wrote:
Again, I must caution anyone that doing business with MCS is akin to snake handling. You may get through several attempts but eventually you'll get bit. And when MCS bites, they're highly poisonous. Stay away.


Amen brotha!Applause

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