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Thread: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

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    Senior Member predatorkj's Avatar
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    Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Been to quite a few this year and some aren't very crowded but some are astronomically more crowded than they have been in the past. Weird thing too is that they certainly aren't the same old regulars either. After graphing for a while, you get to know most of the people who come out. But lately I am seeing more and more new faces. And the lines have gotten longer. I went for Andre Johnson and Arian Foster the other day and, granted they are very popular players, the line was forming 15 hours before start time. That is just nuts. Last year I went to get Andre Johnson and the line started forming 13 hours before hand but the biggest difference was...I didn't show up until around 1 or so in the morning and I was only maybe 15 people back. This year I got there around 7 at night the night before and there were already 15 people ahead of me.

    I know the Texans are 2-0 and I know they are a really popular team and the two players mentioned are very hot but I was just curious since I have noticed an uptick at signings most people don't even attend. Whats even crazier is that getting info ahead of time via the internet is not business as usual anymore. For some reason player appearances are getting tighter lipped and now I find out about stuff the day before or the day of. And there are quite a few I never find out about at all. So how so many new people are finding out and now coming even earlier than the regulars do seems pretty odd.
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    Senior Member matchpenalty's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Holy crap, can't believe folks camping out for graphs of those. But free signings always bring a lot of people out of wood work. Were they heavily promoted in Houston area? I always love it when you see people wait in line forever for an auto, then have player sign ratty hat they are wearing or for baseball have them sharpie a plastic baseball. Oh well, if that is what they want, more power to them.
    Signingshotline.com is very good about finding intel on most. So it's worth the $1 or so a month to get that service.

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    Senior Member predatorkj's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Quote Originally Posted by matchpenalty
    Holy crap, can't believe folks camping out for graphs of those. But free signings always bring a lot of people out of wood work. Were they heavily promoted in Houston area? I always love it when you see people wait in line forever for an auto, then have player sign ratty hat they are wearing or for baseball have them sharpie a plastic baseball. Oh well, if that is what they want, more power to them.
    Signingshotline.com is very good about finding intel on most. So it's worth the $1 or so a month to get that service.

    Signingshotline is only indicative of information other posters post. To me...this is unreliable. It used to be badass but now things sometimes don't get posted, sometimes the info is wrong, and sometimes it gets posted the day of which is of no use to just about 90% of collectors since most of us have a normal job we have to take off from or schedule stuff around. I have a few friends who are members and they don't feel its worth the money. Academy and some of these other business only show events half the time now and it seems some never even make it on their site. Same can be said for some of these other locations.

    As for camping out...well it was for the hottest back in the league and the best receiver in the NFL. I knew it'd be bad but I have never waited that long for an auto and trust me...I have better autos than Andre and Arian.

    I do know what you mean about what people get signed. To me...this is about the only time where value comes into play. But it comes into play on a personal level. If the player isn't all that good and I would have to drive very far at all...I won't go. The only time I go when there is a player I don't need an auto of is if there happens to be another player there who I do need an auto of. Then I may take a card or even an index card if I don't have any of his playing cards. But those are mostly just a throw in. Nothing too important. And if I am getting trading cards signed...it works out good because chances are I already had them and they were just sitting in my collection so now I figure they are worth their while to keep since I got them signed. People complain about those who collect primarily base. I say it works out well when you start turning all those base cards into autographed base cards.

    But I see people get the dumbest things signed. By dumb I don't mean that its dumb to get anything in particular signed but if you are going to wait that long in line why not get something nice signed? I see people get mini footballs signed and like you said "ratty hats" and all kinds of stuff. Its like they just grab something. My buddy is in the process of moving and he is getting rid of all of his stuff and while the kinds of autos he has is cool and vast, the stuff he has it signed on is comical. I just got a HOF basketball player signed mini basketball from him. My question is why wouldn't you get a nice photo file or a real Basketball signed by somebody of that nature? It would be worth the extra $10 for the full size basketball and whats worse is I know he stood in line forever for it. His collection has no uniformity to it and its all stored away because its so oddball that its too hard to display.

    This is where I say having a focus is key. Its okay to start off all over the place but you have to find a focus and stick with it. Otherwise you really do start just collecting junk you eventually don't care about anymore.
    Collecting Jeff Bagwell all day every day!
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    Senior Member TBTwinsFan's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Talk about free signings... I go to TwinsCaravan every year and last year they had a solid line-up w/ John Gordon, Jeff Manship, Denard Span, and Bert Blyleven. The year before wasn't even CLOSE to last year.

    Same with TwinsFest... I spent about an hour in prospect lines and I can remember getting in and out in less than 10 minutes before.

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    Senior Member matchpenalty's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    I thought for people who paid for signingshotline.com got more of lead time on a lot of signings. I know on free info side, a lot of times they post them the day of and not show you some. To make you want to pay.

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    Senior Member predatorkj's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Quote Originally Posted by matchpenalty
    I thought for people who paid for signingshotline.com got more of lead time on a lot of signings. I know on free info side, a lot of times they post them the day of and not show you some. To make you want to pay.

    I'm not paying for what should be and normally is free information. Sure its a great help and all but I don't like having to pay just to know. I won't *****. I'll just go around it. There are far too many ways to find out. It just seems lately that a lot of these normal websites have been totally lacking in their speed with which they post any new info. Hell...one of the radio stations ended up having Kevin Martin from the Rockets at a local hooters and luckily I knew which hooters they were supposed to be at anyways because Eric Winston was doing a show as well later in the day. In fact...I had gone to go get him to sign a practice used glove of his the week before and I distinctly remember them saying over the radio that they would be live at that location two Tuesdays in a row. It was right by my house and they had Steve Slaton down there too at an Academy. I figured I didn't need Slaton that bad so I'd axe that and go get Martin. Well I call the Hooters to confirm he'd be there and what do you know? They changed the damn location. Keep in mind this is at 10:00 in the morning and the show was supposed to start at 2 in the afternoon.

    Its crap like that that really throws me. Sure it happens but I gotta wonder why they changed it. The paranoid side of me tells me its because they don't want a bunch of auto hounds out there.

    Another little issue is one of the announcers at the show for the Andre and Arian signing announced the day before that there would only be 100 people able to obtain an autograph as they were handing out lanyards. I just don't see the reasoning behind that. Unless you are trying to create an insane scramble like there pretty much was. And of course more than 100 people showed up. And they knew more than 100 would show up too. So why they do that is beyond me. Then at the show they sit there and make all kinds of snide remarks about how dumb it is to come out that early for an auto. Well dumbass...how about you keep your mouth shut and quit trying to create that type of atmosphere? I know it sounds dumb but man...crap like that irks the hell outta me.
    Collecting Jeff Bagwell all day every day!
    Current Jeff Bagwell count: 4,637 different cards!
    Also collecting Jerry Stackhouse! 751 different cards!
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Lines are getting longer for free signings because paid signings are getting way too expensive! It is even getting ridiculous that companies charge for you to get a photo with the athlete for another astronomical fee! People love FREE anything no matter what it is.

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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Easy, the internet. Information is getting passed around a lot faster and wider. There are many sites where people talk about autographs and more people know where to look for it. It's the same for TTM, etc.

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    Senior Member predatorkj's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone noticing lines getting longer for free signings?

    Quote Originally Posted by metrotheme
    Easy, the internet. Information is getting passed around a lot faster and wider. There are many sites where people talk about autographs and more people know where to look for it. It's the same for TTM, etc.

    Yes true. But at the same time this exact thing is actually diminishing to a degree. Some of these things are slipping between the cracks as well. Some stuff doesn't get posted at all. And of course true hardcore auto hounds know where to look. I am not even a part of any sites like this yet I still know where to look. I know when to go to get in line too. Whats weird is that it also seems like you still see a ton of new faces even if the information is not readily available. And people are getting insane with what time they line up at.

    In the handful of years I have been collecting IP autos, things have changed drastically. Wait times, the amount of people going, the lack of certain information, show and event promoters trying to somewhat sabotage people from knowing too much in advance etc. Its gotten to be quite a chore.
    Collecting Jeff Bagwell all day every day!
    Current Jeff Bagwell count: 4,637 different cards!
    Also collecting Jerry Stackhouse! 751 different cards!
    Also collecting Jack Lambert and football players from all Texas colleges!

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