C. Tubb Mithril auctions and Recast/Pirating

MMP Mithril in Middle-Earth The Marketplace of Tharbad C. Tubb Mithril auctions and Recast/Pirating

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  • #495
    twrich
    Participant

    In conversations with Chris yesterday he asked me to pass on the following regarding his feelings about those who recast his figures, and the potential for abuses in the future by those who hold those recasts:

    And remember, as many have said (warned) before, Chris does have access to the MMP forums and although not taking an interest in every conversation, has become very alarmed by recent trends.

    Specifically the juicy eBay thread and the ongoing talk about making sure that Dwar “ends up in the right hands” so that Holger might make recasts of it for members of MMP. ESTEL, you, I think, helped tip over the apple cart. But there are many others who have made comments going back some time, with a wink here and a nod there alluding to making spare parts at first, and then full figures, and even reproductions of special rare figures more recently. Perhaps the phrase: “where there is a will there is a way,” is a reference to this willingness to go against Chris’s express wishes that we do not make or accept recast or outright fakes. Now with the issues surrounding dritz and the unusually high number of rare pieces he seems to have for sale, even more than can be accounted for by those he legitimately purchased, this subject is of great concern to Chris.

    So he mailed me yesterday a long email and asked me to pass on his comments. Some of it is personal in nature and not referenced. But I will quote directly on the matter at hand. I was tied up with family matters yesterday and could not pass his words along as promptly as I would have liked, but I can say that I am not the “robin” that the Master Ent refers to, so perhaps Chris has enlisted more that just me to pass on his words:

    “Hi Tom
    Following up on my last email, I was wondering whether you had much contact with Herbert Lukaszewski, who produced the unofficial Mithril catalogue in 2009. He has a picture of the Galadriel special figure in there which looks like a fake to me. I have always had very friendly and cordial relations with Herbert in the past and therefore emailed him to ask him about this figure’s provenance. I also asked him if he would post it to me, to check, in return for which I would send him a genuine figure; but alas, I get no replies whatsoever from him or others who I have written to with similar requests. The exception to this has been Dieter Waltermann, who was as supportive and honourable as yourself in this matter.”

    Zoetrop, if you are reading this, please contact Chris or respond to me with a PM if you need the info to contact him. Also, I know for a fact that Chris holds many of us in high regard, the above reference being specific to his concerns about recasts and pirating.

    “I do not intend to take any action against Holger Frick at this stage, just to warn him not to continue. I am willing to overlook what has happened in the past if he stops his activities now. If, after warning him, he persists I will pursue the
    matter further.”

    To this point, I have made clear to Chris that I do not believe that you, Holger, are trying to sell these for a profit, only as I have said in past posts that you enjoy casting and have thought of this activity as doing friends a favor. Indeed, as I’ve alluded to, and Chris knows as well, you have made a few for me which I really appreciated at the time, before I really understood his views on the issue. I believe that he also, being aware of the various posts in these threads, realizes that you, Holger, have not said “Yes, send me the Dwar and I’ll recast it for everyone.” But you certainly have not said you wouldn’t, and he knows of your past activities. Also I did not mention you to him when he began to express his unhappiness to me last year about recasts. He asked me outright if you were the person recasting Galadriel. I don’t know of your past relationship with Chris, but he clearly has been aware of you for some time. Perhaps his reference above is connected to that. Nonetheless, Holger, I think you must consider yourself warned to cease recasting his figures, even just to give them away.

    I know that Chris and Mithril have had to take legal action against those producing fakes in the past, and have been successful.

    Chris also certainly isn’t appreciative of anyone who would encourage someone else to recast his figures either!

    “I have ended the two auctions . . . namely the M9 and the Dwar of Waw.”

    This action is a direct result of Chris becomming aware of the post I referred to above by ESTEL. Also, in my opinion, I don’t think he really appreciates the idea that people get together on MMP to try to direct who the winning bidder may be. Chris certainly isn’t a greedy man, as all of us should know, but still this is a hard economy and bid-rigging takes money out of his pocket!

    “The French seller Dritz, although he did buy some of the Half-orcs and dwarves from me, also seems to have a suspiciously large number of these for sale.”

    For the member who recently purchased a figure from Dritz and was concerned that it is a fake due to the reddish stuff on the figure, I’m afraid Chris thinks it very well could be a fake. This goes to the heart of the matter–Chris is rightly concerned that fakes of Mithrils, as has happened in the past with other works of his, are getting into the market and reducing the value of his brand; not to mention hurting collectors who buy the fakes unknowingly, and reducing the value of ALL OF OUR COLLECTIONS. A recast that ends up on eBay is a fake, period!

    “Unless and until I can figure out a way of putting an end to pirating of these rare miniatures, I am not putting any more up on Ebay, including the remainder of the Mw dwarves. . . .”

    This is a hard developemnt to bear.

    And now an eye-opener, which I specifically cleared with Chris before mentioning, some of the other pieces he intended to release in the future which are now also on hold. This continues from the paragraph I was qouting just above:

    “. . . I have a Hobbit variant on a pony from the original M series , some of the Wilderland stuff and some of the abandoned ICE Dol Guldur figure range ( which I have now been able to name thanks to your help!). I was thinking of selling the forementioned as buy-it-now items to stop absurd prices being reached, but even this does not seem to discourage piracy. I gave the special Galadriel away free but it was still copied.”

    Really, I believe that all of this saddens and frustrates him. How would any of us feel if we created something wonderful after years of hard work, gaining skill in a craft, only to see others at the height of our skills take what we made and copy it, no matter the intentions, resulting in a loss of income and reputation in the marketplace due to the possibility that buyers couldn’t always be certain if it was real? Yes, this happens in the real world, but usually the creator of those items being faked is not still alive and trying to put food on the table and his kids through university!!!!!

    And remember, we are but a small part of his business activities.

    “I would be quite happy ( should you be so willing) if you would make a little announcement on the forum summing up what I have said above.”

    “Thank you for all your help

    Chris”

    Well, I guess I have made more than a “little announcement.” But Chris is my friend, and I know this matter deeply troubles him. He has bent over backwards to accommodate us, not the most profitable of his clients. But he loves the Mithril line and I think he is very appreciative of our passion for Mithril and Tolkien in general.

    Please, let’s do what is right fellow MMP members! Let’s as a group assure Chris that we won’t participate in these activities, either producing or asking for these recasts. I think we have much to lose if we don’t. I for one would be very disappointed if we could never see the rest of the Mw Dwarves and the other figures he mentioned. Also, it would be the end of Mithril if Chris decides that it just isn’t worth the trouble to deal with this problem. And all this talk about not caring if there is a Mithril stamp on the bottom of a figure or not is rubbish in my opinion. Apparently some people (in and outside of our group) don’t understand that there are licensing and copyright laws in the world. And why would Chris produce “elf warrior” or other such figures under his own lable if some of his clients recast them, allowing for them to end up on eBay, sooner, it seems now, than later?

    Well, as he has asked me to pass this along to our group, I feel it right to let you all know that I told him I would post him a copy of my comments. I don’t feel entirely certain that Chris shares all of my opinions. But those parts in quote marks are straight from him, and leave no doubt about how he feels regarding this matter.

    Sadly in troubled times,
    The Man in the Dark

    #10724
    twrich
    Participant

    In conversations with Chris yesterday he asked me to pass on the following regarding his feelings about those who recast his figures, and the potential for abuses in the future by those who hold those recasts:

    And remember, as many have said (warned) before, Chris does have access to the MMP forums and although not taking an interest in every conversation, has become very alarmed by recent trends.

    Specifically the juicy eBay thread and the ongoing talk about making sure that Dwar “ends up in the right hands” so that Holger might make recasts of it for members of MMP. ESTEL, you, I think, helped tip over the apple cart. But there are many others who have made comments going back some time, with a wink here and a nod there alluding to making spare parts at first, and then full figures, and even reproductions of special rare figures more recently. Perhaps the phrase: “where there is a will there is a way,” is a reference to this willingness to go against Chris’s express wishes that we do not make or accept recast or outright fakes. Now with the issues surrounding dritz and the unusually high number of rare pieces he seems to have for sale, even more than can be accounted for by those he legitimately purchased, this subject is of great concern to Chris.

    So he mailed me yesterday a long email and asked me to pass on his comments. Some of it is personal in nature and not referenced. But I will quote directly on the matter at hand. I was tied up with family matters yesterday and could not pass his words along as promptly as I would have liked, but I can say that I am not the “robin” that the Master Ent refers to, so perhaps Chris has enlisted more that just me to pass on his words:

    “Hi Tom
    Following up on my last email, I was wondering whether you had much contact with Herbert Lukaszewski, who produced the unofficial Mithril catalogue in 2009. He has a picture of the Galadriel special figure in there which looks like a fake to me. I have always had very friendly and cordial relations with Herbert in the past and therefore emailed him to ask him about this figure’s provenance. I also asked him if he would post it to me, to check, in return for which I would send him a genuine figure; but alas, I get no replies whatsoever from him or others who I have written to with similar requests. The exception to this has been Dieter Waltermann, who was as supportive and honourable as yourself in this matter.”

    Zoetrop, if you are reading this, please contact Chris or respond to me with a PM if you need the info to contact him. Also, I know for a fact that Chris holds many of us in high regard, the above reference being specific to his concerns about recasts and pirating.

    “I do not intend to take any action against Holger Frick at this stage, just to warn him not to continue. I am willing to overlook what has happened in the past if he stops his activities now. If, after warning him, he persists I will pursue the
    matter further.”

    To this point, I have made clear to Chris that I do not believe that you, Holger, are trying to sell these for a profit, only as I have said in past posts that you enjoy casting and have thought of this activity as doing friends a favor. Indeed, as I’ve alluded to, and Chris knows as well, you have made a few for me which I really appreciated at the time, before I really understood his views on the issue. I believe that he also, being aware of the various posts in these threads, realizes that you, Holger, have not said “Yes, send me the Dwar and I’ll recast it for everyone.” But you certainly have not said you wouldn’t, and he knows of your past activities. Also I did not mention you to him when he began to express his unhappiness to me last year about recasts. He asked me outright if you were the person recasting Galadriel. I don’t know of your past relationship with Chris, but he clearly has been aware of you for some time. Perhaps his reference above is connected to that. Nonetheless, Holger, I think you must consider yourself warned to cease recasting his figures, even just to give them away.

    I know that Chris and Mithril have had to take legal action against those producing fakes in the past, and have been successful.

    Chris also certainly isn’t appreciative of anyone who would encourage someone else to recast his figures either!

    “I have ended the two auctions . . . namely the M9 and the Dwar of Waw.”

    This action is a direct result of Chris becomming aware of the post I referred to above by ESTEL. Also, in my opinion, I don’t think he really appreciates the idea that people get together on MMP to try to direct who the winning bidder may be. Chris certainly isn’t a greedy man, as all of us should know, but still this is a hard economy and bid-rigging takes money out of his pocket!

    “The French seller Dritz, although he did buy some of the Half-orcs and dwarves from me, also seems to have a suspiciously large number of these for sale.”

    For the member who recently purchased a figure from Dritz and was concerned that it is a fake due to the reddish stuff on the figure, I’m afraid Chris thinks it very well could be a fake. This goes to the heart of the matter–Chris is rightly concerned that fakes of Mithrils, as has happened in the past with other works of his, are getting into the market and reducing the value of his brand; not to mention hurting collectors who buy the fakes unknowingly, and reducing the value of ALL OF OUR COLLECTIONS. A recast that ends up on eBay is a fake, period!

    “Unless and until I can figure out a way of putting an end to pirating of these rare miniatures, I am not putting any more up on Ebay, including the remainder of the Mw dwarves. . . .”

    This is a hard developemnt to bear.

    And now an eye-opener, which I specifically cleared with Chris before mentioning, some of the other pieces he intended to release in the future which are now also on hold. This continues from the paragraph I was qouting just above:

    “. . . I have a Hobbit variant on a pony from the original M series , some of the Wilderland stuff and some of the abandoned ICE Dol Guldur figure range ( which I have now been able to name thanks to your help!). I was thinking of selling the forementioned as buy-it-now items to stop absurd prices being reached, but even this does not seem to discourage piracy. I gave the special Galadriel away free but it was still copied.”

    Really, I believe that all of this saddens and frustrates him. How would any of us feel if we created something wonderful after years of hard work, gaining skill in a craft, only to see others at the height of our skills take what we made and copy it, no matter the intentions, resulting in a loss of income and reputation in the marketplace due to the possibility that buyers couldn’t always be certain if it was real? Yes, this happens in the real world, but usually the creator of those items being faked is not still alive and trying to put food on the table and his kids through university!!!!!

    And remember, we are but a small part of his business activities.

    “I would be quite happy ( should you be so willing) if you would make a little announcement on the forum summing up what I have said above.”

    “Thank you for all your help

    Chris”

    Well, I guess I have made more than a “little announcement.” But Chris is my friend, and I know this matter deeply troubles him. He has bent over backwards to accommodate us, not the most profitable of his clients. But he loves the Mithril line and I think he is very appreciative of our passion for Mithril and Tolkien in general.

    Please, let’s do what is right fellow MMP members! Let’s as a group assure Chris that we won’t participate in these activities, either producing or asking for these recasts. I think we have much to lose if we don’t. I for one would be very disappointed if we could never see the rest of the Mw Dwarves and the other figures he mentioned. Also, it would be the end of Mithril if Chris decides that it just isn’t worth the trouble to deal with this problem. And all this talk about not caring if there is a Mithril stamp on the bottom of a figure or not is rubbish in my opinion. Apparently some people (in and outside of our group) don’t understand that there are licensing and copyright laws in the world. And why would Chris produce “elf warrior” or other such figures under his own lable if some of his clients recast them, allowing for them to end up on eBay, sooner, it seems now, than later?

    Well, as he has asked me to pass this along to our group, I feel it right to let you all know that I told him I would post him a copy of my comments. I don’t feel entirely certain that Chris shares all of my opinions. But those parts in quote marks are straight from him, and leave no doubt about how he feels regarding this matter.

    Sadly in troubled times,
    The Man in the Dark

    #10728
    Barliman
    Participant

    All very true and valid comments. And sad. But being a cynic by nature (ask my wife!), I suspect that it’s probably impossible to put an end to the eBay pirates unless you’ve got big fat lawyers and a big fat wallet (a combination that has always worked for Games Workshop). I don’t know in any detail about how the admin side of eBay works, but can’t individual items and sellers be reported? I thought they could. That would at least be a start.

    #10730
    Gildor
    MMP Elder

    Thanks a lot Tom for this letter. (though I feel a bit jealous/perplex not to have been warned myself as this is my forum and such things fall -alas- under my responsability…

    If this forum tends to become a Den for piracy or, not even talking about piracy to make profit, a workshop for duplication of rares or even non rares… I will have to take measures too…

    this saddens me a lot too because as I said elsewhere, I’d not want to loose the Man’s trust and friendship because of some activities here…

    I am even afraid that some parts of my own collection are not genuine because I bought some of them in the past from DrizztdoUrden myself… but anyway…

    I hope the people who are concerned will take the proper action. If need be I’ll moderate myself the Tharbad forum to remove any consideration of “ebay auctionning strategy…” the Tharbad section was originally meant to post and inform members of the sales happening on ebay… not to tell one another who will bid or not in order to have some insight on the forthcoming results

    as of today, I’ll kindly ask any of you here to NOT say if you will bid or not on given references… this is private and personnal matters…
    I indeed can’t forbid people to discuss that in private… in MP or emails, but not openly in a thread, Thanks a lot

    Now I will try to contact the man to know what I could do to help in this matter…

    #10731
    twrich
    Participant

    Gildor, I thought first to warn you (and others) of my conversation with Chris, but felt that I would stick to his request that I leave a message on the MMP boards, suspecting that in his own time he would contact you and others. But please do not feel slighted . . . I believe he has ongoing conversations with many of us, some more focused on certain subjects than others. It is this issue of recasts that he has asked me to help him with, and therefore I received his request to pass along those thoughts.

    #10733
    Milo
    Participant

    I agree that the market place has become quite unfair for other ebayers.
    Following his request, I will no more tell which auction I am on.
    The only posts I will add ocncerning ebay will concern new auctions to come.

    #10734
    Gildor
    MMP Elder

    I contacted the man… suggesting him to “unveil” certain hidden functionnalities of this forum… that I could use to allow him to NOT use ebay for his direct sales…. i’ll have to work a lot on this… but it may prevent his precious masterpieces to fall off into unwanted hands… and maybe it could be fairer…

    I too am upset when it comes to
    1) recasting for duplication purpose… when someone does not at least own the original
    2) piracy generated by the above
    3) ridiculous auction and resales and marketing done by people like Drizzt
    4) selling away precious gifts GIVEN by the Man… (not SOLD by him…) indeed people can do whatever they want but that’s a break of respect and trust that the man placed in you…

    for all of the purposes above, I’ll try to help…

    #10735
    Milo
    Participant

    Concerning recasts, there is still a real need for restoring “broken-uncomplete miniatures”.
    Can any of you ask Chris if such recast is acceptable?
    If exist, I would even pay and send someof my minis to Cork for a maintenance action…

    #10736
    Gildor
    MMP Elder

    I doubt it is possible for old figurines Milo… Mithril is already selling bunchs of small parts, but the fact of having a figurine complete is part of the rarity…

    as I said to the man, having a missing shield or sword recast is one thing…. having a “prototype army” (for example the mw347) recast , even if it is only for army building, diorama making purpose… is piracy even if it is not meant to be sold… the one who received the recast could, in the future sell it and it could become piracy…

    Owning a duplicate of something you DO possess though is something quite different maybe… if you duplicate yourself then nothing can be said, you are in your right to (try to) reproduce something you possess providing it is for copy purpose for your own usage…

    I work in computers and multimedia as you all know by now… piracy for audio CD or softwares is something I am use to fight… I am used to make copies of my own CDs to keep the originals safe in case the copy is deteriorated, but the copies are for myself only…

    It is not really the same for Mithril as it is in the domains of ART and the (re)production itself is subject to copyright and licence… Remember the old MW337 and MW336. Well the LICENCE was given/sold to Time Machine to be able to reproduce them… it could not be done freely…

    I have nothing against anybody but I can’t allow on my forum, the fact to let someone with the ability to recast to buy something in your place with the hope to get a copy then… this is not right…

    #10740
    Thingol
    Participant

    It is a great pity that we must discussed about piracy on our MMP forum, but I hope this problem will be stopped and no one of us will no more think about that. I hope also that Chris will again organizing auctions through his small company and I hope we would see all above mentioned figures including an rest of the famous dwarves from MW series. I’m new in this forum and I’m live in country where nobody collect Chris’s precious and magnificent figures and thus make me little bit proud. Also I’m against piracy specially if those figures are make for realize extra dirty profit. And finally recasts of some parts of the weapons and accessories. It could be useful if we do not have possibilities to have figure in his full form. And there are a lot’s of them on eBay. I do not know about this Dritz ( Dominique ) I have bought from him approximately 15 figures from all of my 570 in my shelf and all of those are heavy like others and have a mithril stamp and PAM sign with year of release so who knows if they are originals or recasts. Also I now that my Galadriel and Morlas are gifts given from the Chris and those 2 are not copies. And I will never give them away. Never. And I hope my little daughter will keep it because of I will try to left her as a special gift whole collection one day. And I do not know what more could I say… I wish lots of new figures and bigger monthly incomes so I could afford me lot’s of Chris figures. With my salary of 900 Euros per month + lot’s of other work out side my regular working time to increase incomes I will try to have original miniatures. It is hard but I will try.. and there are no to much left any more. I know how to respect any gift… so I will no more comment on this theme…

    #10741
    Theobald
    Participant

    First of all I would like to confirm what Tom stated in the first entry, as I received a post from Chris which nearly read the same. All this is a serious matter.
    Tom gave away more details than I did, but once Chris asked him to provide this, I just can confirm it and support Tom’s way of interpreting those matters.
    I just received news from Chris in which he explained why he put on those Ms432A Galadriels on Ebay in such a number. To me that was an honourable act to do so, as I really can understand his arguments. I think withdrawing the “Dwar” also has to be accepted in the same way. We will have to keep our eyes open for those “piracies”. – Imagine me, witnessing an MX-Imrahil-variant (sword up) on Ebay.
    Let me not leave here without good news, please. The next regular M-release is a vignette and is about to be finished very soon. So, smile, please, there’s hope.

    #10742
    Turambar
    Participant

    Much has been said. Everything is true.
    But- here in this forum is certainly no one who wants to make profit or follw any dark thoughts. I think I can tell this.

    This is the reason I spent my time here on the MMP. Even people won´t talk much with me which I don´t understand, but this is another topic . . .

    I want to add. Remember my words when I told you about my Galion figure bought via Drizzzz . . . And my suspect- well obviously it IS- about a fake.

    What was the reaction??!!! I remember the reaction was a bit lazy- so to say. NOW everybody is against piracy. I become a little bit upset, meseems.

    Better to go back into my state of shock I have been in for 125 minutes . . .

    #10743
    Gildor
    MMP Elder

    Yes, the new regular release will be Amazing… I know what it is and I helped Chris some time ago about deciding to do it… which makes me a bit proud here… still I cannot disclose any further information

    I am still quite sad to see that… for such matters which directly are under my responsability when it comes to what is posted on MMP… it seems other people got many mails and answers from the Man… but I was not contacted at all on this matter…
    I was for other matters some time ago… but not on this very serious one :( :(

    I could have done something :(

    Master Archer, I am sure people want to talk to you and appreciate you a lot, we all here are regular posters and contributors of the MMP community… it is easy to track who is an active member… who is observer, and who is only registered on MMP to have access to informations… and there are… I assure you there are people here who… simply “take a look” to seize opportunities maybe…

    I am not a cop and it is not my duty to watch over every member of the MMP to ensure it is a regular and correct person… I am no dictator :)

    All I can do is put new features into place and use password protection for some kind of “gold MMP” … or something like that…

    Remember that all that is posted on the Prancing Pony is Public… and does not even require a registration to this forum to be read…. this can even be “parsed” via google search engines…

    #10744
    Thingol
    Participant

    Hope is the most important matter in every life… so there is always hope…. :) !

    #10745
    protozeus
    Participant

    I so far wasn’t really aware (probably due to a very limited access to any inside information and a large collection in original blisters) that Mithril piracy (especially in the sense of selling it for profit) is really such a serious issue. Concerning the MS423 Galadriel, I thought our state of discussion here was at that time that Mr D had offered a second copy he would have acquired somewhere. I haven’t seen any more of them on Ebay, but again my vision is very limited …

    But I am also sure that our member(s) who were discussing not-for-profit recasting (and be it only of parts) will adhere to that warning, and will respect CT’s point of view in future.

    I also did not know about any unofficial catalogue (where can one get this, and who has dared to create completely new fake figurines?), and of all of those interesting genuine ranges mentioned that now are in danger of never seeing the light (at least for normal collectors).

    Personally (and hopefully not too pathetically stated), nothing that enters my collection will leave it before I pass it on as heritage, similar to what others stated before. Fakes and recasts are of no interest to me, and I would never sell or hand over an original (e.g., the gracious Imrahil and Galadriel gifts, or my Dwar, or any other) for copying.

    #10746
    protozeus
    Participant
    twrich wrote:
    … And all this talk about not caring if there is a Mithril stamp on the bottom of a figure or not is rubbish in my opinion. …

    On a side note, here, as with the “half orcs among us” comment that is in my opinion not really helpful for changing behaviour through improved understanding (and I am really convinced that with our friendly forum and all of its members this will be possible), I would beg to disagree: As far as I remember, this discussion mainly did concern genuine miniatures by CT that are not part of Mithril range (as Phaeton), not pirated recasts of any kind.

    #10747
    ddaines
    Participant

    Well there we have it – laid out on the table for all to see and digest.

    * Recasting is a problem not only here with Mithril figures, but in the ‘other’ side of the hobby that I live in namely the large scale sci-fi and/horror kits that are available out there where just about anything worth collecting has been cast mainly by recasters from Thailand and the Far-East – ironically one of my favourite sculptors of Predator figures is himself a Thai :).

    *In the past when I used to buy a UK modelling magazine (Military Modelling) it used to be considered fair play by serious modellers/reviewers to copy a part of [usually] a vehicle, weapon so that they could replicate it for super detailing etc. but for their own use only.

    I would be very interested in Chris’s views if he regards basic copying, i.e. taking a simple press moulds for single piece castings such as dead orcs for use in dioramas, as a violation of his/Mithril’s copyright. I have done this on the presumtion of being acceptable for self use and the lack of dead orcs being available, sometimes using magic sculpt so that positions can be altered (as well as hopefully advertising Mithril products via images of finished work).

    Perhaps Tom as you are obviously on good communication terms with Chris, rather than individuals now bombarding Chris with questions, if you were able to get his view on this it would be useful to know.

    * I don’t bid on the more expensive rarities due to expense and other interests, and regretfully the Dwarves of the Iron Hills and the Isengard sets passed me by for the same reason, but I have always regarded members informing each other of what they are bidding on as merely being a courtesy way of not bidding for something as a duplicate against a forum-friend who may be after the item as a first time buy; I haven’t, and I imagine others have never considered it to be a way of influencing the result, but it is a fair point I guess.

    * I have a couple of gifts from Chris, namely the Galadriel and Morlas as well, as the Witch-King figure from the PC game, and like many others who also own these figures I consider them to be a very personal gesture (as I do another valued gift from a fellow forum member ;)), and hope to paint them up one day basically to show my committment to keeping them and not selling them on.

    * I do sometimes wonder if that due to the diverse range of forum member’s nationalities, the majority of who do not have English as their first language, some comments are often misinterpreted from their original meaning; I think Micheal sometimes falls foul of this when answering posts on the Mithril web-site, hence sometimes giving the impression of skullduggery and devious plans :o.

    * Also mentioned by Protozeus, the point regarding the Mithril stamp is to my mind literally a case of folk wanting to collect Chris Tubb sculpts whether the figure is released by Mithril or Phaeton-Design, and not meanining figures cast by anyone other than Mithril or Chris himself where the ID name has been obliterated/removed.

    A sad day I guess that Chris has had to request this be made public, but if it puts the train back on the right track and clears the air, then best said than kept locked up. I suppose the bottom line is that we as the premier Mithril collectors forum should be setting the standard for collectors, if he loses his trust in us then we have lost a good friend.

    #10749
    Gildor
    MMP Elder
    ddaines wrote:
    I suppose the bottom line is that we as the premier Mithril collectors forum should be setting the standard for collectors, if he loses his trust in us then we have lost a good friend.

    I would not let this happen… Else this entire website would have no more purpose…

    #10751
    presto247365
    Participant

    Many thoughts…

    First let me say that I am glad we can openly discuss this issue. It has been skirting about the fringes for some time, with copies of rarities for friends and potential fakes on E-bay being bought by MMP members.

    I don’t believe any of our well-known members of MMP are actively trying to to make money by selling fakes. I think we may have fallen into a trap of getting copies for several reasons. 1) Placeholders in our collections until we can obtain an original. 2) Figures for gaming. 3) Figures for dioramas.

    I am thirty-eight. I have been a Tolkien fan since I was 10 or so. Mithrils (and Chris’s other works) were a happy accident that I discovered in the early 90’s and I have been smitten ever since. I also am a historical wargamer, and have visions of producing Middle-Earth battles on the tabletop.

    That being said, I must admit I fall in a grey, if not criminal, area where copies are concerned. As I mentioned in the Tharbad thread, I do have a good many copies of mithrils that, if painted, could be misrepresented as originals. This has caused me much pause as to what to do with them when I pass or fade from usefulness. Happily, many are cast in resin and are therefore obvious copies for filling in army ranks. I know I can’t sell them, the tertiary market is uncontrollable. I think that unless a proper heir for my passion appears between now and my Great Journey, destruction of these is the only answer. I can only say that I have never, and will never, have any intention of profiting from these figures. But who can believe just words typed on a screen? A poor way to take take the measure of a man.

    I think it is good and well that we be mindful of the consequences of our actions. A seemingly honest copy to a friend can have far-reaching effects on other collectors and on the creator of these minis.

    #10753
    Kenakko
    Participant

    It would be hard to add any better comments than those which have already been posted. I should say that I share the opinions of David and Presto. Particularly I share Presto’s passion for gaming in Middle Earth and see Mithril as, far and away, the best option for this. Also, I find myself in the same ‘heir’ difficulties, but I delude myself that my own sons will take an interest in the doings of their father (though I do not share my own father’s passion for flying model airplanes!:/). But I would add that I have always shared the perhaps naive view that Mithril collectors are a self selecting bunch of good hearted folks. I have found this to be the case over many years of collecting and meeting them in person or online. No orcs, half or otherwise, have ever been encountered by me. I would note that no one that would attempt to sell a copy as real is a member here. To me, there is a huge difference between deception for monetary gain (piracy) and simple recasting. But Mithril are not my creations and I am not an intellectual property lawyer (thank goodness). I can respect the man’s views and am glad that he has expressed them, albeit indirectly. They are his babies after all and we have seen repeatedly his concerns about fairness to his fans. He should sell or not sell as he wishes (and on eBay a seller can cancel bids). To keep it in perspective, I think no real damage has been done to either Mithril’s profits or Chris’s ability to profit from his own collection. There isn’t a lot of this sort of thing going on. Perhaps some people have paid too much money for a fake Mtihril and perhaps they have paid too much money for an original as well! I’ve imagined this forum as a place for true fans of Mithril to exchange opinions as well as collect and promote these fine figures. And I value all of the opinions expressed.

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MMP Mithril in Middle-Earth The Marketplace of Tharbad C. Tubb Mithril auctions and Recast/Pirating

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