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Is Flipping Wrong?


#121 BodyShot213   Banned Banned   203 Posts   Joined 16.2 Years Ago  

BodyShot213

Posted 20 April 2006 - 11:20 PM

If flipping is wrong, then i dont know whats right. This is how our economy works.

#122 io   ... Super Moderators   25091 Posts   Joined 17.5 Years Ago  

Posted 20 April 2006 - 11:54 PM

If flipping is wrong, then i dont know whats right. This is how our economy works.


If you read back through this thread, you see where the problem arises. It is in the definition of "flipping". To some people flipping means buying games cheap and then returning them without a receipt to places like Walmart for $50. That is wrong - legally and morally.

To others, flipping means buying games cheaply at one place and trading them in as used games at another place that offers more for them. That is clearly NOT wrong, morally, legally, ethically, or whatever. Though there are poeple on CAG that seem to think so. I think you mean this definition when you say it is how our economy works.

#123 chunk   Rhodesia is Super! CAGiversary!   622 Posts   Joined 18.6 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 04:15 AM

That's just rationalization. You know you are deceiving them and you know you didn't buy it there. Funny how people rationalize with silly lines like that.


There is no deception. Walmart purposely doesn't ask because they don't care.

Walmart is purposely accepting a calculated business risk by accepting items purchased at other stores and they are, in fact, profitting quite handsomely from their decision to do so.

They are aware that they are losing money to some customers by accepting items bought at other stores, but they don't care because on the whole they are making money by providing a hassle-free return experience to customers.

It's implicit in your actions. Last I checked, most stores aren't into the business of buying random shit lying around your house.


It is not implicit. Walmart is in the business of buying random shit lying around your house. They do it to attract customers to the store.

There is nothing wrong with taking advantage of Walmart's business model. It is no different than getting free after rebate items.

I wish they had Walmarts around here so I could take advantage of this policy.

#124 io   ... Super Moderators   25091 Posts   Joined 17.5 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 07:42 AM

I wish they had Walmarts around here so I could take advantage of this policy.


Wait, you live somewhere that doesn't have a Walmart?? Rhodesia, perhaps?

Funny that you say they provide a "hassle-free return experience". To me, the whole thought of driving to a Walmart, parking in their over-crowded parking lot, dealing with the hordes of people, waiting in the return line, etc, is the very definition of a "hassle".

#125 Skelah   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   941 Posts   Joined 17.3 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 08:05 AM

how can u even take advantage of walmarts policy i took something back there the other day on accident from another store they tryed to scan it and it woudlnt scan instantly they said 'its from another store we cant take it'.

#126 Trakan  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 09:47 AM

There is no deception. Walmart purposely doesn't ask because they don't care.

Walmart is purposely accepting a calculated business risk by accepting items purchased at other stores and they are, in fact, profitting quite handsomely from their decision to do so.


Lies = Deception.

If you're returning an item to a Wal-Mart and you didn't buy it there, you're lying to them, which is fraud. Fraud is illegal.


They are aware that they are losing money to some customers by accepting items bought at other stores, but they don't care because on the whole they are making money by providing a hassle-free return experience to customers.


Riiight. That's why they've recently limited no-receipt returns to 3 every six months/year. I mean, of course they would limit it, especially if they were profiting from it. Hell, I've tried returning something to Wal-Mart that actually was from Wal-Mart, but I didn't have the receipt, so I couldn't.

What do I know, though? You're the expert, having no Wal-Marts around you.

#127 botticus   GHM4Life CAGiversary!   16522 Posts   Joined 17.0 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 12:18 PM

how can u even take advantage of walmarts policy i took something back there the other day on accident from another store they tryed to scan it and it woudlnt scan instantly they said 'its from another store we cant take it'.

It was probably something that they don't carry, so it wasn't in their system.

#128 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 18.0 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 12:30 PM

Lies = Deception.

If you're returning an item to a Wal-Mart and you didn't buy it there, you're lying to them, which is fraud. Fraud is illegal.


Depends. I'd argue that, legally, you have to *say* "I bought it here" or "it was a gift from my aunt in Des Moines, she bought it at a Wal-Mart." OTOH, there could be some legal implications that, upon the *act* of returning an item to a store, one agrees that the item was, in fact, purchased there. If the former is fraud, then you simply need to watch what you say. If the latter, then any act of flipping (save for trade-in exploitation) is illegal.

Riiight. That's why they've recently limited no-receipt returns to 3 every six months/year. I mean, of course they would limit it, especially if they were profiting from it. Hell, I've tried returning something to Wal-Mart that actually was from Wal-Mart, but I didn't have the receipt, so I couldn't.

What do I know, though? You're the expert, having no Wal-Marts around you.


Full disclosure: despite what I probably said earlier in this thread (being against flipping), I did engage in an act of flipping this week. I feel ashamed, and there's no excuse. Long story short, I found a 360 bundle on the cheap a few weeks ago ($500 for platinum, 2 games, and a wireless controller). Well, I knew that I wanted one of the games, and was iffy on the second. Thank the maker for marketplace demos, as I found out how bad this Burnout-with-guns wannabe was, without having to open the package myself. So, I went to a store and told the clerk "I'd like to exchange this, but don't have a receipt." (my words precisely). Ten minutes later, I ended up with Fight Night Round 3. Do I feel bad for flipping? Yeah. Do I feel like a hypocrite? Yeah.

But I'm a hypocrite with Fight Night Round 3. Forgive my rationalizations, but I somehow do not expect to purchase any more games this year that I knowingly did not want, so this will be my flipping in toto for quite some time. I don't blame me, I blame the bundles! (OK, and me too).

#129 chunk   Rhodesia is Super! CAGiversary!   622 Posts   Joined 18.6 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 06:03 PM

Wait, you live somewhere that doesn't have a Walmart?? Rhodesia, perhaps?


There are no Walmarts in NYC. Not just Manhattan either, none in Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, or Staten Island.

Lies = Deception.

If you're returning an item to a Wal-Mart and you didn't buy it there, you're lying to them, which is fraud. Fraud is illegal.


First of all, if you go to the return counter at walmart and say, "This item was purchased at another store, but I'd like to return it here" how is that lying?

Second of all, lying to the clueless Walmart clerk doesn't necessarily mean that you are defrauding Walmart. Defrauding requires that you lie in order to cheat. Lying in itself does not necessarily imply cheating and, since it is Walmarts policy to accept 3 returns without receipt per year per individual, regardless of where the items were purchased, Walmart is not being cheated.

Now, if you lied in order to make more than 3 returns (I know they check ID, but suppose they didn't check one time) you would be cheating Walmart, since Walmart only agreed to 3 times and no more. That would be fraud.

See TUBAPRO1's conversation with a Walmart manager on page 5 (I'll quote it at the end of this post so everyone can read it).

Riiight. That's why they've recently limited no-receipt returns to 3 every six months/year. I mean, of course they would limit it, especially if they were profiting from it. Hell, I've tried returning something to Wal-Mart that actually was from Wal-Mart, but I didn't have the receipt, so I couldn't.

What do I know, though? You're the expert, having no Wal-Marts around you.


Companies that offer rebates also limit the number of rebates per customer. That doesn't mean they aren't making money by offering rebates. Large retail is a complicated business; it's not as simple as just "buy low, sell high".

With the TRU deal recently, I've looked into both Walmart and TRU's return policy pretty extensively. I'll focus on Walmart's right here:

First off, I went and looked around the store, especially by the returns/exchange counter in my store, and nowhere does it say anything about the item having to come from Walmart. On the website, it says returns without a receipt FOR ITEMS BOUGHT ON WALMART.COM can be returned for a store credit, but in the store it doesn't specify. Also, on the receipt for TRU and Walmart, it makes no mention of this issue.

Secondly, I asked a manager at a Walmart a bunch of questions. I made it clear what was going on and how people (including myself) were doing this. He said that they accept any item that they carry in the store with no receipt for the price they're currently selling it at. I explicitally asked: "Is it items you carry or items purchased from Walmart" and he said that it was items they carry. He also told me (which I'm sure many of you know) that once you make three returns without a receipt your account is supposedly red-flagged and you cannot return anymore. I haven't heard of this actually happening with anyone (my mom and I frequently return things to Walmart simply because we can't find the receipt and we have no idea where they came from).

Also, Walmart has never once asked me "where did you buy this?" or "did you buy this at a Walmart?" If people are so insistent on this being illegal (which I'm honestly not sure if it is or not), then why does Walmart not simply put up signs that state their policy clearly or require employees to ask where the item was purchased?

Another thing many people have brought up is the intention of the return. Sure, flippers are doing it to make a profit on a giftcard. But legally, what separates flippers from people who are returning items that didn't come from Walmart? What distinguishes someone who purchased the game to do this from someone who received a gift without a receipt or is not sure where something came from? If it didn't come from Walmart, they're all breaking this law (if it exists).

The answer is simple. Walmart should simply stop taking unopened games, DVDs, etc. They're pretty much the only large chain that I know of that is still doing this (Target's caught on in recent years, Best Buy/CC are very YMMV, and all videogame stores have NEVER allowed it). And just because people do it here, doesn't mean there aren't people out there doing worse things. I'm sure people scam Walmart and other stores much worse than a few teenagers buying 3 or 4 games and selling them back to Walmart so they can get a different game for a cheaper price. Oh, and if I haven't made it obvious how I feel, flipping is fine with me, as long as you're not a hoarder and buy 20 copies of the same game so no one else can get what they want. I've never operated like that and never will.



#130 Mookyjooky   Work is play... CAGiversary!   5203 Posts   Joined 18.2 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 06:18 PM

Its a waste of your time. The time you devote to this, you could be doing something you love or making way more money than this.

#131 judyjudyjudy   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   3593 Posts   Joined 18.6 Years Ago  

judyjudyjudy

Posted 21 April 2006 - 06:26 PM

First of all, if you go to the return counter at walmart and say, "This item was purchased at another store, but I'd like to return it here" how is that lying?

Has someone actually done this successfully (explicitly said "I'd like to return this item that is from another store that is not Walmart." not "I'd like to return this item you carry.")? I mean, the word "return" itself implies it should be originally from the store.

#132 chunk   Rhodesia is Super! CAGiversary!   622 Posts   Joined 18.6 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 06:31 PM

Has someone actually done this successfully (explicitly said "I'd like to return this item that is from another store that is not Walmart." not "I'd like to return this item you carry.")? I mean, the word "return" itself implies it should be originally from the store.


"Return" doesn't necessarily mean "return to the store it was originally bought from". It could mean, "return to retail" or "return to manufacturer".

Anyway, whether or not this can be done successfully without lying to the clerk isn't really relevent to the legality of the situation. I think it's pretty clear from Walmart's written policy and comments from people that might actually have a clue (like managers) that Walmart is willing to give store credit for items purchased at other stores. The clerk should be acting on behalf of Walmart and should be carrying out this intention. However, what the clerk should be doing and what the clerk does are two different things and it may be necessary to lie to the clerk to get him to do what he should be doing. Now, I personally think it is morally wrong to lie to people, but it isn't against the law as long as you aren't cheating anyone.

#133 io   ... Super Moderators   25091 Posts   Joined 17.5 Years Ago  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 07:35 PM

Full disclosure: despite what I probably said earlier in this thread (being against flipping), I did engage in an act of flipping this week. I feel ashamed, and there's no excuse. Long story short, I found a 360 bundle on the cheap a few weeks ago ($500 for platinum, 2 games, and a wireless controller). Well, I knew that I wanted one of the games, and was iffy on the second. Thank the maker for marketplace demos, as I found out how bad this Burnout-with-guns wannabe was, without having to open the package myself. So, I went to a store and told the clerk "I'd like to exchange this, but don't have a receipt." (my words precisely). Ten minutes later, I ended up with Fight Night Round 3. Do I feel bad for flipping? Yeah. Do I feel like a hypocrite? Yeah.

But I'm a hypocrite with Fight Night Round 3. Forgive my rationalizations, but I somehow do not expect to purchase any more games this year that I knowingly did not want, so this will be my flipping in toto for quite some time. I don't blame me, I blame the bundles! (OK, and me too).


Well, that's not SO bad - at least you just exchanged it for an equivalent game of the same value. That doesn't really hurt the store. You didn't get $60 cash for it :D.

Hell, I've taken a few games the grandparents sent the kids that we already had and returned them to Target and TRU - and I was very up front about it. I said these were gifts, I have no idea where they came from, could I exchange them for other games? It was a bit iffy at both places, but it worked (gave me the lowest sale value in history at Target but that was OK - I'm sure they made money on the exchange though!).

#134 Trakan  

Posted 21 April 2006 - 08:19 PM

Depends. I'd argue that, legally, you have to *say* "I bought it here" or "it was a gift from my aunt in Des Moines, she bought it at a Wal-Mart." OTOH, there could be some legal implications that, upon the *act* of returning an item to a store, one agrees that the item was, in fact, purchased there. If the former is fraud, then you simply need to watch what you say. If the latter, then any act of flipping (save for trade-in exploitation) is illegal.



I meant the act, although I wouldn't consider buying a game for $10 and then turning around and selling it for $50 legally flipping.


First of all, if you go to the return counter at walmart and say, "This item was purchased at another store, but I'd like to return it here" how is that lying?


I have a hard time believing that any person working at the return counter doing returns would allow an item to be returned after the person specifically stated that it was purchased at another store. I just don't buy it.

Second of all, lying to the clueless Walmart clerk doesn't necessarily mean that you are defrauding Walmart. Defrauding requires that you lie in order to cheat. Lying in itself does not necessarily imply cheating and, since it is Walmarts policy to accept 3 returns without receipt per year per individual, regardless of where the items were purchased.


The person doing the returns is employed by Wal-Mart. If you lie to them, you're essentially lying to Wal-Mart, which in turn is fraud. When lying to that person, you're defrauding him/her, and you're defrauding Wal-Mart.

As far as I know, the policy isn't 3 returns without receipt per year per individual, regardless of where the items were purchased. Again, I'm sure if you walked in and told the clerk that you didn't originally buy the item there, he/she would not allow the item to be returned.

#135 caggamers  

caggamers

Posted 22 July 2021 - 09:03 PM

Yes, it's wrong. It raises the prices for people who just want to buy the items. Flippers clear out the inventory everywhere so that you're forced to pay more money if you actually want the item when you could have just bought it for MSRP or even cheaper on clearance if not for flippers.

#136 Z-Saber   moon2S CAGiversary!   7378 Posts   Joined 17.5 Years Ago  

Posted 22 July 2021 - 09:42 PM

Yes, it's wrong. It raises the prices for people who just want to buy the items. Flippers clear out the inventory everywhere so that you're forced to pay more money if you actually want the item when you could have just bought it for MSRP or even cheaper on clearance if not for flippers.

Fifteen year bump for this?

#137 anotherpoorgamer   Bird's Nest Hair CAGiversary!   5709 Posts   Joined 16.6 Years Ago  

anotherpoorgamer

Posted 24 July 2021 - 05:49 PM

Man, I wish I could go back 15 years ago.  Stockpile all my money and use it to flip consoles. 

To answer the 16 year old question by the original poster.  I think it is wrong morally, but ethically fine. 

16 years ago, I would be saying it was both morally and ethically wrong because there are better ways to make money/spend your time. 

Now, not having the money to buy even 1 Xbox Series X, 1 PS5, and 1 Nintendo OLED Switch for myself.  I believe if I had the cash, I so would be flipping consoles for a profit right now. 



#138 Davem   Picture was the top google result for my username CAGiversary!   1338 Posts   Joined 2.9 Years Ago  

Posted 27 July 2021 - 04:01 PM

I think it is wrong morally, but ethically fine. 

Ideally, the best way to flip is to buy when the item goes on clearance, so it would be meet both moral and ethical standards!  :oldman: