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Just how tight is MCS grading?10634

Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock Tedsaid private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkseid_of_town
I am unsure its a better term, but the word "graduation" comes to mind, similar to the markings on a measuring cup.

Maybe I'll just start saying "grade gradient."
Quote:
Originally Posted by MutantMania
I took 6 books to my lcs to get an estimate on the grades and they told me 3 were at least a NM 9.2 - 9.6 and the other 3 VF/NM 9.0 to NM-. I got VF / VF- / VF on the NM and FN/VF / VG / FN on the VF/NM books "graded" by MCS.

Wow. That's even worse than I thought. Maybe somebody at that CBCS Expo they're having next month will call out Buddy and ask him what the hell gives.
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Collector flanders private msg quote post Address this user
If he admits to under-grading he owes me a few dollars.
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Collector EbaySeller private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by flanders
If he admits to under-grading he owes me a few dollars.


I do wonder if an insider might one day reveal what could basically amount to an internal conspiracy. For example if they were trained to grade tougher in specific situations rather than just consistently across the board.
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Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock Tedsaid private msg quote post Address this user
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Originally Posted by EbaySeller
Quote:
Originally Posted by flanders
If he admits to under-grading he owes me a few dollars.

I do wonder if an insider might one day reveal what could basically amount to an internal conspiracy. For example if they were trained to grade tougher in specific situations rather than just consistently across the board.

That would be interesting. Like, if they had a policy of grading the comic, and then reducing the grade by one point, across the board, for everything. Or two points. That's possible. Might even be part of it.

But a lot of it has to do, I think, with a certain philosophy on grading. If you focus (and train) on the flaws, without looking at the comic holistically, then you just count a series of "points" to deduce. Here's a small water mark, automatic 8.0. Here's a tear, no higher than 6.0. Color breaking crease front cover? Max is 7.5. Each spine tick front cover equals half a point. Or whatever

If all you do is add up every flaw you see, your grades will ROUTINELY be too low. Because every flaw also has a continuum, from being large and noticeable, to tiny and discrete. Also, many flaws can still be counted, even if the grade is already too low for that type to "count." That is, a c.b. spine tick may matter at the 9.8 level, but not at the 9.0 level.

This method is especially bad if it doesn't account for or calculate the comic's virtues. Those should move the grade higher, but many people overlook this aspect of grading.

I saw somewhere someone had written an app to calculate comic grades. I had a brief look at it. I guarantee anyone who uses and follows that app will be terrible at grading. You just can't do it that way. Comics are better than their flaws.
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Collector EbaySeller private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedsaid
That would be interesting. Like, if they had a policy of grading the comic, and then reducing the grade by one point, across the board, for everything. Or two points. That's possible. Might even be part of it.


If they were doing something nefarious, I'm guessing it would be based on stock levels and liquidity. If a book is in demand and stock is low, they may grade it more fairly. If a book is not in high demand and/or current stock levels are high, they may be trained to grade more strictly. I'm not saying this is the case, but they certainly don't want to be in the business of warehousing other peoples books that are never going to sell, and I'm sure the graders get sick of people trying to send those books to them.

If this were the case, and grading were based on something other than actual book condition, it probably would qualify as a conspiracy to defraud. This theory is purely based on how my books were graded years ago when I sold to them. The less liquid books seemed to get tighter grading.
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Collector Darkseid_of_town private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedsaid
Quote:
Originally Posted by EbaySeller
Quote:
Originally Posted by flanders
If he admits to under-grading he owes me a few dollars.

I do wonder if an insider might one day reveal what could basically amount to an internal conspiracy. For example if they were trained to grade tougher in specific situations rather than just consistently across the board.

That would be interesting. Like, if they had a policy of grading the comic, and then reducing the grade by one point, across the board, for everything. Or two points. That's possible. Might even be part of it.

But a lot of it has to do, I think, with a certain philosophy on grading. If you focus (and train) on the flaws, without looking at the comic holistically, then you just count a series of "points" to deduce. Here's a small water mark, automatic 8.0. Here's a tear, no higher than 6.0. Color breaking crease front cover? Max is 7.5. Each spine tick front cover equals half a point. Or whatever

If all you do is add up every flaw you see, your grades will ROUTINELY be too low. Because every flaw also has a continuum, from being large and noticeable, to tiny and discrete. Also, many flaws can still be counted, even if the grade is already too low for that type to "count." That is, a c.b. spine tick may matter at the 9.8 level, but not at the 9.0 level.

This method is especially bad if it doesn't account for or calculate the comic's virtues. Those should move the grade higher, but many people overlook this aspect of grading.

I saw somewhere someone had written an app to calculate comic grades. I had a brief look at it. I guarantee anyone who uses and follows that app will be terrible at grading. You just can't do it that way. Comics are better than their flaws.
So very much that is right here.... people forget when they grade it isn't a matter of starting with a perfect score then ticking off the flaws, it is grading the book in its entirety, perhaps white pages add a bit, or the flaws are back cover rather than front lower the impact etc. It definitely is a case where people need to learn to grade the entire book rather than only the flaws.
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Collector Darkseid_of_town private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by EbaySeller
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedsaid
That would be interesting. Like, if they had a policy of grading the comic, and then reducing the grade by one point, across the board, for everything. Or two points. That's possible. Might even be part of it.


If they were doing something nefarious, I'm guessing it would be based on stock levels and liquidity. If a book is in demand and stock is low, they may grade it more fairly. If a book is not in high demand and/or current stock levels are high, they may be trained to grade more strictly. I'm not saying this is the case, but they certainly don't want to be in the business of warehousing other peoples books that are never going to sell, and I'm sure the graders get sick of people trying to send those books to them.

If this were the case, and grading were based on something other than actual book condition, it probably would qualify as a conspiracy to defraud. This theory is purely based on how my books were graded years ago when I sold to them. The less liquid books seemed to get tighter grading.
I doubt its anything nefarious, its simply a matter of grading using worst case scenario to appease even the strictest graders when buying books. This lets them avoid returns for the most part.

I used to sell books to them...and quickly understood that I simply cannot afford the hammering that is part of their process. It is far simpler to submit for consignment, and set your own price, regardless their grade, and then wait for the book to sell.
Had a bagged Star Wars 3 D issue that had never been opened, was kept on a flat board and bagged even though the comic came polybagged. When they graded it they considered it a VG +....allowing them to purchase a comic that in VF was around 15 dollars, for less than cover price. I never sold them another book and wont...but I do buy from them, as the harsh grading works to a buyers best
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