The Business of Autographs at Conventions

The Terminator

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Then you have celebrities like Garth Brooks who will come out after a concert and stand for 8 hours signing for free. He knows these fans are the reason his music sells and his tickets to concerts sell, and he wants to thank every single one in person. Some celebrities truly appreciate their fans.
Indeed!

This is exactly why I would never pay them. You make millions of dollars playing pretend in front of a camera, those millions come from your fans. The LEAST you can do is give them the opportunity to have you sign a scrap of paper and take a picture with them. Charging upwards of 100 bucks for the privilege of being near them is narcissism at its peak.
There is this music idol idol of mine, whom I spent over an hour with, talking to, getting autographS(I brought albums and singles, I got them all signed) and at the end a photo, for all of this I paid: nada
All I did was to ask nicely for a "meet and greet" through e-mail, which got forwarded to the right people and boom. That was in 2003, to this day I still have every cd single and album I got signed with a personalized message.

Unlike some people that get something autographed only to sell it :facepalm
Some people are more interested in the money.... but not all of them :)
 

Moviefreak

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Indeed!



There is this music idol idol of mine, whom I spent over an hour with, talking to, getting autographS(I brought albums and singles, I got them all signed) and at the end a photo, for all of this I paid: nada
All I did was to ask nicely for a "meet and greet" through e-mail, which got forwarded to the right people and boom. That was in 2003, to this day I still have every cd single and album I got signed with a personalized message.

Unlike some people that get something autographed only to sell it :facepalm
Some people are more interested in the money.... but not all of them :)
I am a big Toad the Wet Sprocket fan, and they were coming to town but I had to work that evening.
I happened to post on Glen Phillip's Facebook page that I wish the concert was earlier as I will be at work that night.
A few minutes later I got a private message from him. He invited me to sound check at noon. They were in the bus when he messaged.
A few hours later I was at the House of Blues for sound check, they each took time to come over and chat with me, then they grabbed a guitar, all signed it and just gave it to me.
Not a penny spent and a memory I will have forever. They are not rich, they are just touring to put food on their table and fund their self released music, but to them it isn't about charging fans money to meet them. They were really appreciative that I even wanted to be there.
 

The Terminator

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I am a big Toad the Wet Sprocket fan, and they were coming to town but I had to work that evening.
I happened to post on Glen Phillip's Facebook page that I wish the concert was earlier as I will be at work that night.
A few minutes later I got a private message from him. He invited me to sound check at noon. They were in the bus when he messaged.
A few hours later I was at the House of Blues for sound check, they each took time to come over and chat with me, then they grabbed a guitar, all signed it and just gave it to me.
Not a penny spent and a memory I will have forever. They are not rich, they are just touring to put food on their table and fund their self released music, but to them it isn't about charging fans money to meet them. They were really appreciative that I even wanted to be there.
Fudge balls that is about as nice as it gets! :eek :thumbsup
Even with people that are rich, guitars tend to be pretty personal. Cool story :)
 

KrangPrime

Master Member
You do realize that most actors don't make millions of dollars, right? Outliers like cast of TBBT, Friends, etc, are not typical. The average member of the Screen Actor's Guild earns about $52k a year, which barely qualifies as a living wage in LA.


http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/hollywood-salaries-revealed-movie-stars-737321


http://www.2016auditions.com/how-much-do-actors-get-paid/
hence degrading themselves to appearances like Chiller theater ;o)...

(for those who don't know, mostly a convention that books former A listers....it's not one of the nicer cons out there either with over crowding galore..and a staff that kind of rules over it with an iron fist :/)
 

JediG60racer

Sr Member
I am a big Toad the Wet Sprocket fan, and they were coming to town but I had to work that evening.
I happened to post on Glen Phillip's Facebook page that I wish the concert was earlier as I will be at work that night.
A few minutes later I got a private message from him. He invited me to sound check at noon. They were in the bus when he messaged.
A few hours later I was at the House of Blues for sound check, they each took time to come over and chat with me, then they grabbed a guitar, all signed it and just gave it to me.
Not a penny spent and a memory I will have forever. They are not rich, they are just touring to put food on their table and fund their self released music, but to them it isn't about charging fans money to meet them. They were really appreciative that I even wanted to be there.
Nice to hear that about them. I went to UCSB in the early 90's and they, along with Ugly Kid Joe and Four Non Blondes, were the local Isla Vista party bands.
I never really cared for Toad's original music, but they shared my love for The Cure and The Smiths and I played guitar with them at a few parties after a conversation with them at one where they were lamenting the ability to do some Cure covers without another guitarist who knew all the parts. I volunteered to bring my rig to the party next weekend, and that was that. I think we also hit some Echo & The Bunnymen, Love and Rockets, and Depeche Mode too.
They were genuinely nice guys then... glad to hear that carried forth.

Honestly I didn't realize anyone outside of Santa Barbara had ever really heard of them. Interesting to hear they have fans in Florida!
 

Dreddful

Well-Known Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I've never understood the infatuation with autographs. I think I've only had one in my entire life. Dave Prowse signed a pic for me once. I have no clue where that picture is, it went straight into a drawer and I don't think I've seen it since.
I agree 100% I have zero desire to get an autograph from anyone.
 

Moviefreak

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Honestly I didn't realize anyone outside of Santa Barbara had ever really heard of them. Interesting to hear they have fans in Florida!
Really? With songs like "Walk on the Ocean", "All I want", "Something's Always wrong", "Good Intentions", all of which were hits on top 40 radio, there should be no surprise that they had a wide fan base. Add in the touring they did nationwide outside of Santa Barbara as well. Heck... they still tour. Glen is touring his solo stuff, and Toad is touring as well. The band is going to be at Epcot's Food and Wine Festival next month for a two night concert, so fans here in Florida can get their fix, lol.
 

JediG60racer

Sr Member
I tuned out top 40 radio since about 1992 due to the low quality of what was being foisted upon listeners. I still don't listen to much top 40 pop.
Different strokes.
 

Jeyl

Master Member
I remember subscribing to autograph magazine around 2008-09 and I'll never forget that one article about Babe Ruth. This guy just loved signing autographs. Just loved it. One article described a moment where a kid who brought like 10 balls for him to sign and he signed every last one of them. And this was during the great depression.

My Dad once did business with someone who was a player on the Harvard team in the documentary "Harvard beats Yale 29-29". His screen time in the movie was only five seconds, but my Dad loved to brag about how that was still more screen time than Meryl Streep had in the film. He signed my Dad's copy and even offered to get Tommy Lee Jones to sign it as well since the two of them were on the team and still friends. My Dad was like "If I wanted his autograph, I'd go on eBay to get it. I'll never be bale to find your autograph anywhere!". Always got a kick out of that story.
 

KrangPrime

Master Member
I tuned out top 40 radio since about 1992 due to the low quality of what was being foisted upon listeners. I still don't listen to much top 40 pop.
Different strokes.
I never liked newer music pas 1995.

Anything i did like never lasted more than a week on air. I hate rap. music from 2000-2010 on popular radio was boring to down right depressing. i stopped paying attention soon after.
 

kwalsh0000

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
It depends on the person aswell. Some guests go out of their way to embrace the fan, chat, take pics etc so that auto price does not seem as steep then...while others treat you as an atm and want you through quick.

But sure we all have to earn money somehow and if the fan walks away happy, where is the harm.
 

dascoyne

Master Member
It didn't become a big business because they started charging for autographs.

It became big business when a fella would ask autographs from ten different actors saying they were their biggest fan then turn around and flip the autograph for a quick profit. I don't blame the agents, event organizers etc. from responding by commodifying autographs. The natural evolution of that mechanism is to rigorously generate a market force.
 

KrangPrime

Master Member
It didn't become a big business because they started charging for autographs.

It became big business when a fella would ask autographs from ten different actors saying they were their biggest fan then turn around and flip the autograph for a quick profit. I don't blame the agents, event organizers etc. from responding by commodifying autographs. The natural evolution of that mechanism is to rigorously generate a market force.
I'm happy to say I've kept every one i ever got. The first one being Dan Aykroyd and Bones Deforest himself.

all these autographs are plentiful in supply these days, i don't see why people waste effort and time selling them on ebay.
 

drusselmeyer

Well-Known Member
Yes, once upon a time, no celebrity charged for autographs. Sports collectors made this a profitable possibility by selling autographs at ridiculous prices then Jose Canseco started charging for his autograph and the whole thing became ridiculous with COAs and the nonsense that comes with commodities.

Today you need a COA from some unknown person to verify that a signature from a known person is legitimate.

I only collect signatures from people I have actually met. They are always personalized and I don't care that they have no commercial value.
 

SickleClaw

Active Member
Yes, once upon a time, no celebrity charged for autographs. Sports collectors made this a profitable possibility by selling autographs at ridiculous prices then Jose Canseco started charging for his autograph and the whole thing became ridiculous with COAs and the nonsense that comes with commodities.

Today you need a COA from some unknown person to verify that a signature from a known person is legitimate.

I only collect signatures from people I have actually met. They are always personalized and I don't care that they have no commercial value.
I dont mind so much personalized autographs, these remind me that I actually got to meet the person. The only autographs from a third party seller I'll actually get are these where the person is deceased and come from a reputable and trusted person.

I tend to avoid paying the autograph resellers at conventions who have literally bins of 10 cent glossy pictures that they are reselling for 50-60 each just because they have someone's name on them. Id rather get to meet the person.

I think I've only paid for an autograph a few times. Ive been lucky that the convention i go to, Los Angeles Comic Con- it has a promo every year where if you pre order your tickets you get a free autograph coupon per ticket. Thats how I was able to get Rose McIver from Izombie's signature last year , saving me 50 bucks.
 

drusselmeyer

Well-Known Member
The most valuable thing that I ever got from any celebrity was a hug. It was not requested, it was a genuine expression of emotion. Sentiment surpasses commercial value.
 

Cephus

Sr Member
The most valuable thing that I ever got from any celebrity was a hug. It was not requested, it was a genuine expression of emotion. Sentiment surpasses commercial value.
The most "valuable" thing I've ever gotten from a celebrity is their phone number, because we were actually friends and communicated outside of conventions.
 

drftfan

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I just got back from a Motogp race a few weeks ago. I had my helmet signed by 18 different riders including Marc Marquez, the current world champion. I only did it to create something memorable for myself. And I got a little caught up in the excitement of the weekend. Realistically I now have a helmet worth over $2k but I could care less.
Honestly getting to wish Marquez good luck right before the race he won by a mile and him thanking me is now going to be an even better memory.
But as far as conventions. Not anymore. I find it to simply be price gouging your fans. I mentioned this story in another part of this page, but I met Kirsten Dunst at a little cafe near North Hollywood. We took a few pictures together. She never put her hand out to take a dime from me. She was extremely friendly and I always think of that when I see the prices charged at conventions by "celebrities" I admit I have paid my fair share and ONLY if it was someone I HAD to meet would I do it again.
 
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