Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Nerdversity discussion: Are Autographs Dying?

In 2014, Australian Cricket Legend Shane Warne and musician Taylor Swift both stated that the Autograph market is slowly dying off. 

Once upon a time, the Autograph was a marker of status, wealth and luck, however, in recent years, the demand for autographs has gone down, with this generation of fame hunters opting for a selfie with their prefered celebrity, as well as a retweet or like on Facebook. They believe that's more personal and worth more than an 8x10 with their signature on it. But that's only part of the reason why, lets look at some others:

Fakes - Yep, we couldn't escape the fact that for every genuine Mark Hamill autograph on the market, there are a million fakes, ranging from easily identified fakers to fakes that are practically identical to the real £100 deal. 

Vintage Autographs/Rare Autographs - some Celebrities have never signed in their life and that's why the rare few that are in existence fetch the premium money, pricing many collectors out the market. This also rings true for the newer collectors as the deceased celebrities still bring in top money and aren't signing anymore.

Most Markets are fluctuating  - see, while everyone is out to get their premium Sylvester Stallone autograph and paying the top money for it, the other lower and middle markets are suffering. Most people only choose to collect a certain franchise or sport, leaving other things in the dust. For example, if you are a sports buff and you only collect world cup players, then you'll be ignoring the markets for lesser known players and players who've never played, then they'll slip through the net and either not sell or sell for low ball offers. 

Celebrities are charging more - Yep, in order to make up the shortfall created by the market, most celebrities are now charging for selfies and putting the prices up on their autographs at conventions and other meet and greet sessions. The average convention price for an autograph now is about $20/£20 for a standard guest, more so if they're more famous than others. 

Of course, don't think that this is Nerdversity 101 trying to put you off your collecting and hunting, This is why we want to hear from you. Do you think the autograph is dying? do you believe the selfie with a celeb is more personal?