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Bootleg or no bootleg?Bootleg or no bootleg?

RosezailaRosezailaVor 1 MonatAsk MFC
I am on a few Facebook groups and I have soon realized there is a big controversy over bootlegs. I am in the middle here I know bootlegs are not official but if you are just starting out and have a budget and the bootlegs looks good would you willing to buy one till you can get the official? What is your opinion?
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Interessante Kommentare
If you're starting collecting and you're on a budget, why bother buying a bootleg when you can just save money for an official figure? I'd rather have 1 official than 3 bootlegs.
Common sense.

If you don't wanna spend much I'd just suggest starting with prize figures instead. Most of them have pretty good quality, easy to find and they're cheap. Win-win.
Vor 1 Monat
Think of it this way. Let's say you see an enamel pin on Etsy from an artist you like, and it's $10. Then you go on Wish and see that someone in China has stolen that artist's design and is selling a crappier version of the same thing for $2. You could pay the $2 and support art thieves in China so that they can continue to steal designs from artists you like (and in doing so, steal sales from them), or you can support the original artist so they can continue to make art that you enjoy (and, you know, profit from their own hard work and talent). It should be pretty clear which one is the right thing to do.
Vor 1 Monat
Recent Comments
I can understand why people do buy bootlegs, but it is an unhealthy industry to support.

I agree a certain percentage of an official figure's price can be kinda bullshitty these days, but not as much as comparing it to the price of bootlegs. An official company has a lot of ongoing costs, such as employing artists and sculptors, and people who will handle scouting for new IPs (and then paying for them!) and then writing contracts, or vetting ones they are provided with. Official compaines may also do outreach - advertising their products, working with wholesalers to get the items out there etc etc. Bootlegs have none of those costs - simply the basics of production, maybe the odd under-the-table payment to get someone to steal something for them, but they don't need to design stuff, organise rights nor even advertise.

Bootlegging isn't very healthy - it is stealing people's hard work, producing poor-quality products that may not meet basic safety requirements (a lot of bootlegs are poor, though there are good ones out there, but I feel these are in the minority), and undermining official sales. Not all bootleg sales are lost sales - but some definitely are. This raises prices for the official figure buyers, as official sellers won't be able to shift as many units, so will need to set a higher price to offset lesser units being sold. I do wonder how different things would be if bootlegs didn't exist.

I'm not going to stop people from buying bootlegs - it's their money and their moral choices, but I'd definitely discourage it. I think there are a fair few hidden costs to buying fake products that a number of people aren't aware about, and it would be nice if someone could do some kind of proper documentary to see what things are truly like. See if the cheaper-produced figues are being produced in worse environments than the real products etc.
Vor 1 Monat
MFC is extremely biased against bootlegs, so all you are going to get are the typical snooty lectures when creating a topic like this. That's partly because promoting bootlegs is technically against the rules of the website.

It depends on the bootleg. There is a particular brand of bootleg currently on the market that makes very high-quality copies. Instead of being severely ripped off by the "authentic" companies, some choose to pay around 10% of the cost of the original figure and get something damn near as good. (This is especially true of things like dakimakura covers, in which manufacturers charge a completely bullshit price, and the fakes both look identical and are extremely affordable).

What many people don't realize is that by "supporting" the original companies, you are also enabling them to charge their ridiculous prices. The greedier manufacturers get, the more appealing cheaper alternatives become. I have pre-ordered many genuine figures, and I can only think of two that I don't regret buying. And even those have a price that isn't really justified. At some point you have to step back and ask yourself who the bigger fool is - the cheapskate intentionally paying less for a lower quality product, or the sheep being willingly bled dry.
Vor 1 Monat
im an artist and fakes annoy me greatly. i participate in artist-dominated hobbies too though so maybe im just biased since fakes are absolutely destroying said hobbies.
you're taking business from the actual companies, you get a, to be completely honest, shit figure, and some jackasses get money for art theft. no positives.
this obviously doesnt include people that got them on accident. some people just dont know better and should be educated on this topic, but if you buy them on purpose then i dont have much, or any, respect for you unless they are secondhand or something but even then the person selling the figure could buy more bootlegs with the money : - /
Vor 1 Monat
I will never spend money on bootlegs . It is like buying a fake art from louvre museum . And in the long run won’t worth anything .
Vor 1 Monat
For me personally it depends. If we talk about small figures that look good bootleg wise but are like..300$ original wise,I'd most likely go for the bootleg. But only in that case,otherwise nope no no.Not even as a new collector,quality>quantity.
Vor 1 Monat
Rajke Ca Fanatic
I don’t want to have any item in my collection that brings suffer to others. Therefore i have a zero tolerance towards bootlegs. And indeed, i have accidentally bought some in the past. Quality is bad and most prize figures are looking better than those pieces of crap.
Vor 1 Monat
Bootlegs are, at their basic description, the marketed theft of art and intellectual properties that would otherwise have been fully supported by the fans. I do not condone buying bootlegs to save money, however I do shop for bootlegs secondhand, and I think they work great as starter kits for people that want to practice repainting/ sculpting for garage kits or their own figures. If you mess up, no harm done to anything licenced and probably more expensive! With that being said, I really, really dislike that bootlegs aren't technically illegal and wish more could be done to protect the artists working to create interesting merch.
Vor 1 Monat
I must admit I intentionally bought a bootleg (ITEM #323689) when starting out this hobby purely because it is cheap. There were not too many issues with the Miku I received either, yes you do get what you pay for as her ribbon was too frail and looked like flimsy plastic but everything else was fine.

The reason I didn't buy anymore bootlegs after that is because with a bootleg once you have bought it there is no resale value. Meaning if you get bored of your bootleg collection it will just sit there gathering dust. On the other hand, the official versions kind of retain their values. So there is always a possibility of selling off your collection, heck sometimes you can even make a profit in the aftermarket.

Another thing is that bootlegs are not as cheap as you think they are. Yes it is a fraction of the cost of the actual figure but you're still talking about $40-$50 for a bootleg scale and around $20 for a nendoroid (from a quick search on aliexpress lol)

So why buy many bootlegs when you can use that money to buy an official version and when you lose interest sell it off and buy another figure you like?

If you are financially bound with how much you can spend on this hobby, like many others have suggested start with prize figures. Some of them are almost as big as a scaled figure.

This is purely from a financial point of view, of course there are the ethics around purchasing bootlegs as many other have mentioned below.
Vor 1 Monat
I feel it may be unfair to be concerned with what others purchase with their money and place in their collections.

However the practice of buying bootlegs is unfair to all involved except for the counterfeit seller, the company + sculptor lose profit, the series merchandise sales is miscalculated, the buyer gets a cheap figure, which will rott and ruin overtime, and give them headaches trying to pose/stand as bootlegs tend to be fragile.

Why waste the money? not to mention excluding shipping bootlegs cost about as much as prize figures. Save up and get a scale you can display proudly, it's worthwhile. Support the industry you love.

Prize figures are a perfect choice for beginners and collectors on a budget or with lower income. My collection is pretty much prize figures all except 1 in figure, 1 recent purchase and 3 pre-orders.
Vor 1 Monat
I think buying bootlegs is not a very good idea, more so for the bad conditions they must be made in, I am not saying normal figure manufacturing is a dream (hardly any manufactoring is) but lots of dirt cheep products probably are not made with safety in mind.

You can definitely find figures at reasonable prices. I once sold a scale figure worth around 90 dollars for only $50 and it was amiami A/B simply because I didnt want it anymore/ it was an impulse purchase. I have sold nendoroids with maybe odd joints or a small scratch for more than 30% off for the same reasons. Also as someone else said AmiAmi preowned is great I got ITEM #140561, for $28 dollars though the shipping was high, but also a 10 year old nendoroid,ITEM #6581 for 18 dollars. And I adore her! You just have to be patient and look for deals. Even mandrake is a good option if you dont care too much about box conditions.
Vor 1 Monat
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