Friday, October 03, 2008

Feeling Lucky? Lottery Test...

I got a few emails and comments about the latest releases and as usual I am not able to make everyone happy. Many of you understand that it is impossible to keep everyone happy and I do try hard to get things into as many different people's hands as I can. But there sometimes are lingering questions of fairness and I'm always looking for ways to even the playing field.

OK, I had been thinking of this for about a year but wasn't sure how to go about it. Jenny kindly helped me think it through and wrote some software to do it and I am immensely grateful for her help. Folks, we had literally hours of heated arguments over this and how to best do it. I'm not claiming it is perfect but I think it's worth a try for one of a kind or very short run items.

Here's how it would work:

I would post an item with description, picture and the price on the blog for your consideration. If you are interested, you can sign up and enter your name into the drawing for the chance to purchase the item. It could be one thing at a time or it could be several of the same items at once.

You'd be able to see your number and a screen name displayed publicly but your real name, address and email address would remain invisible and would never be shared.

The winner or winners would be picked via an online random number generator service (randomizer.org) and I can post the winners on the blog. Winners would then be sent an email with link to a special purchase page on my site. Winners would have 24 hours to respond to my email and if I don't hear back before then, I would draw a new number.

Only one entry per person and duplicates will be discarded. Shipping address on lottery entry MUST match the actual shipping address if a purchase is made.

Here's the first time test item. An old school titanium Prybaby. This is a full sized Prybaby that has been cut down to make a shorty out of it. It's bead blasted, has a subtle pattern on it and is anodized in the UV color. Price is $75 plus shipping. Shipping runs $6 for US and $12 worldwide.



Lottery is now closed. Will post the winner very soon...still waiting for Jenny to wake up. ;)

This will be closed to entries at 9AM EDT Saturday October 4th. Winner will be notified shortly after that.

List of entries so far: Lottery List

56 comments:

mark said...

first!

Noah said...

Cool, like the idea, like the tool, not something I need; looking forward to other tools that come out this way.

HoopleHead said...

imma gonna hax0rs the random number generator to pick "1" :P

good idea :) sorry mark, but im first lol!

Peter Atwood said...

I have not set an end time to this just yet but will play it by ear. I will probably pick the name tomorrow morning.

UKSFighter said...

Awesome, I like the new idea. Kind of makes it a little more fun :).

How long will the lotteries run before you pick?

Rick said...

I think this is a great idea. Should be a lot of fun. :D

Anonymous said...

It seems some of you have the same question as I do... how long will the lottery be left for entries? If it's a short window I'll have the same dilemma of not being able to enter from work...

Peter Atwood said...

Entries close at 9AM EDT Saturday October 4th.

Here4Fun said...

Great idea Peter - low overhead coupled with a truly random chance to win.

I look forward to the new tool postings and fun.

Nubo said...

Wow! It's just incredible what you have gone thru to sell your wonderful creations. Production is one thing. But the issues of trying to appease everyone and being fair about it seems a real challenge. I applaud your efforts Peter. You care and that's why folks really dig your stuff.

Cheers!

Norman

Anonymous said...

I love it! The "mass lottery" haha

Thanks for always keeping it fun for us

Mike

Matt said...

Hey nice thinking Peter! I would do this with 1 of every release you start planning so then everyone has atleast an equal chance to enter!

You would have to re-enter for each item listed correct?

Thanks Peter!

Anonymous said...

awesome - truly the best chances I'll have to score a MSOPT or Booger...

Peter Atwood said...

This would only be for one of a kind or short run items up to maybe 10 or 15 in quantity. For regular runs of 75 items lets say, I would just do a normal release. It will get hard for me to manage the emailing later if I did this for regular large releases.

Yes, there will be a brand new sign up for every new release. That way people only sign up for something they wanted and it keeps the number of entries lower so people have a better chance.

Carl said...

Glad to see you're covering the case where someone tries to enter multiple times with different accounts... might I suggest that, instead of merely saying "duplicate entries will be discarded", you say that you reserve the right to drop all entries from someone if you detect subterfuge? Just a suggestion. Other than that, sounds like a fabulous idea.

Anonymous said...

This is beyond stupid. How is this any more "fair" than checking the website and being in the right place at the right time? I'm not going to play a fucking game to have some remote chance at buying something.

Peter Atwood said...

LMFAO, see what I mean. There is no on God's green earth to make everyone happy. :D

iconoclast said...

I like this idea, at least for one of a kind or very small quantity offerings.
It'll be interesting too since you've made the running list visible. I don't think that most of us have any clue as to the magnitude of response you get whenever you post something. This could be an interesting glimpse at just what you have to put up with from all of us. :)

I hope you'll mix and match this sort of things with your regular first come first serve offerings, based on some criteria or other (number of pieces, phase of the moon, whatever). Either way, it should be interesting to see how it works out.

DB said...

Nice idea, Peter! At least this should give the majority of people who grumble about not having a chance to get a tool a glimmer of hope that they have the same chance as everyone else now. I'll be curious to see how many people sign up for this first test lottery. :)

Peter Atwood said...

Yeah, it can get pretty crazy at times, it really can.

There are already two duplicates on the list. No worries. I will go through when it closes and will eliminate any duplicates or multiple entries before drawing the winning number.

Aaron said...

I like how people who post anonymously on the blogger board also think they are anonymous to you. Don't they realize when them make comments like jerks you have their IP address through the blogger software and if you wanted you could block them from purchasing or even viewing your blog.

Lolanose said...

Peter, this lottery concept is a much, much fairer way of distributing your works than a "who's got the fastest rss feed" mechanism. I suggest that you apply this mechanism for all your sales. It rewards those who pay attention (you have to know the lottery is going on), but doesn't penalize those of us who can't monitor your website 24/7 (not that we don't want to...). Thanks for your continued good works, insight, and patience. Best regards.

Anonymous said...

Call me an idiot but I don't see where people are going to see how many people entered. Are they just basing it on the number they were assigned?

THartley said...

I think "anonymous" raises a good point. In fact, I think half smart comment posting isn't nearly enough to teach Peter a lesson.

He should take it to the next level and refuse to visit the site ever again, never enter the lottery and definitely never buy an Atwood tool !!

On a serious Note Peter, you need to sign up for Google adwords or something and make some ad revenue from the popularity of your site. All these hits have to be worth something.

Cuso said...

THE ATWOOD LOTTO.. FREAKING GENIOUS!!! This should give the average guy a chance, and keep the hawks at bay...very nice Peter, very nice...

George said...

Hey Peter,

Keep up the great work I appreciate all your time & effort :)

This is your blog & you can do what you want with it run it how you see fit.

It would be great to see you return to the pevious policy of not posting the anonymous comments, any of them good or bad this is a place for your fans to gather & the negative anonymous comments appear to be taking a toll on you as well

If someone does not want to take the time to register & log into that account before posting then they are just hiding behind the computer & should not get the satisfaction of seeing their words posted here.

~George

Andrew said...

Great idea Peter

jason said...

Hey Anonymous dillhole,

please feel free to go elsewhere if the means and methods here get your panties in a knot. Peter doesn't owe you anything and I am sure it will not affect his sales one bit.

Best Regards,
Jason

Anonymous said...

Great idea...I like it.

randopara said...

Peter, I really love the idea. I work all day, so I always saw the other method as a game of chance anyway, and I'm a gambler at heart. I'm going to sit this one out, but please continue the lottery, I plan on participating often in the future.

UKSFighter said...

Hey, at least Peter lets us buy online. The lottery idea is GENIOUS and is in use by many well know custom knife makers. Difference is, you have to make it to one of the big knife shows, stand in line, get a lotto ticket, come back at lotto time, hope you get drawn early, then pick a knife from whatever hasn't been taken, then afford to pay some huge premiums for it.

Thanks for all you do Peter, great innovation as usualy.

THartley said...

Peter, what else do you have hidden around the place there ?

You should really kick the lottery off with a "Toolapalooza"

A lottery a day for the weekend.

Ted said...

Hi Peter:

This does seem like a great idea, particularly applied to such limited runs. I work *a lot*, but it's rarely at a computer ... plus I don't like computers much anyway, so this whole RSS pingie thing just confuses me ... so the odds of being at the right place in the right 27 seconds is slim. Not only does this help out a number of folks, but as mentioned above, it's fun!

I would second Carl's comment about at least reserving the right to delete all entries by people who are obviously abusing the system. Entering more than once could simply be a mistake; but if you determine that someone is consistently making "mistakes," I don't think you should be bound to honor their spot in the lottery. It seems absurd to have to say that, but it seems like you get inundated with nastiness already.

Best,

Ted

bison99 said...

good idea

Ryan Barrett said...

Good plan.
Unfortunately, I'm very unlucky.

Personally, I much prefer playing a fucking game to have some remote chance at buying something.

Matt said...

Peter,
I think this is a great idea and look forward to having the chance to buy your fantastic work. Thanks for all of your efforts.

Matt

kpd151 said...

Nice idea. I think limiting it to 1 to 5 items at a time using this lottery system will help spread the wealth. It helps cut down on multiple purchases and by limiting the items it will allow you to make more frequent releases.

DrBruce said...

Your lottery is a wonderful idea, and I'll keep my fingers crossed.

I'd also welcome a voluntary subscription program to help offset the extra time/expenses. Your website and blog provide a very enjoyable distraction, and your tool prices and low volume cannot provide much in the way of extra funds...

Kind Regards - Bruce.

spiff d: said...

never had much luck at winning...but great idea, thanks

always like the basic mini prybaby look too :P~

Ray said...

This is an excellent idea Peter!

Anonymous said...

this makes me think of golden tickets! lol

Knic Knic said...

I don't really have any issues with you selling products. Kinda like this idea seeing how I am always working or sleeping when you post products. That said the color leaves much to be desired so I will leave my luck for another day.

Exmasonite said...

I really like the lottery idea, Peter. Hopefully this will make things easier for you, also. Thanks again for everything and looking forward to scoring a MSOPT next week.

waykno said...

Hey, I can go for the idea. I think there are 2 anonymous folk out there. One is a butt. I bet if he/she were told they just won a brand new blue pick up truck, they would say, "do you have any red ones?" Why don't those people just go take another nap and holler at their neighbor?

Marc said...

I think the new system is a vast improvement. If goods are scarce, one has only limited options to assign the goods. Either increasing the prize until demands match supply (judging from the prizes on the second market or ebay I'm glad you don't do it that way), applying a "comes first, gets first" principle (and even a devoted fan can't follow this site 24/7) or doing a lottery type of thing. IMHO the last one is a good compromise, one doesn't has to be "on alert" and in the long run everybody should get a shot. I hope it works out well!

matt said...

love the idea Peter. this is a great way for a chance to score one of your rare tools that you cant mass produce.

i had to bite my tongue regarding that anonymous guy acually wrote some things down and had to delete it dont want to muck up Peters blog. just glad anonymous dose not want to "play" LOL

myoho said...

...atwoodism just got brighter!

Anonymous said...

Peter, I like the idea. Thanks and keep up the good work

John said...

Great idea for leveling the playing field. Many of us just can't access the site 24/7. Thanks.

mirek said...

It is a nice that Peter is still trying to make changes and improvements (like in his hand-made tools). The most people appreciates the lottery system here. They are probably feeling a better chance to score the blade or tool, or their souls tend to enjoy gambling plays.
I must admit my soul tends more to fishermen or hunters, combined with scientific thinking. Waiting at my PC, studying Peter's usual shopping times, searching usable alerting systems (not Pingie!), etc. This way I enjoyed, and have scored 3 tools from August, and a lot more passed on.
But the new model means less chances for me. So, I am not feeling luckier.
I would be a little bit luckier with combined lottery model. It means:
- one half small batches in lottery, the rest of them in the "old" business model
- a lottery with the exactly defined chance to win = the lottery period lasts till everybody has a defined chance (eg. 1:5, 50 people on 10 boogers)
- a lottery with undefined but "higher" chance to win = a lottery period ends after an hour, or when 50 people entered, or what comes first.

IMHO the lottery model, especially with the wide possibility for entries, decreases the chances for everybody. What is the individual chance to win if there are hundreds or thousands of participants? Everybody had a higher one sitting some hours at PC. Now, you cannot do anything actively in person, but only passively rely on abstractly random chance.
Last but not least, so called scalpers can comfortably prepare a lot of accounts (with various IPs, addresses, etc.) during a lottery period and considerably increase their chance to win. It is very complicated to make more orders and payments from various accounts if you have an usual short time (eg. 20 minutes). Of course, I do not know how many scalpers exist between us. The more fair people take part in a lottery, the less chance for scalpers, but also the less chance to win. So final result for an individual remains the same.

Peter, I hope you will understand, it is not critics on, but only my personal opinion and my inclination to think "out of box" (="out of crowds"). Of course, no system is perfect.

Peter Atwood said...

Yup, those were some of my arguments against it. Also, it makes more work for me to process the orders, maybe a lot more work especially if it takes people forever to get back to me whether they want the thing or not.

But, it isn't about my workload, it's about fairness. It is not perfect, no system is when you have limited numbers of items and high demand.

Believe me, I have spent HOURS arguing over this with Jenny. She actually wrote the software for this last year but I was hesitant to try it out. Some of my regulars will not like it because it means they have less of a chance to score the rarer items. Well, what the hell can I do? There is no pleasing everyone I'm afraid no matter what the model, no matter what the mix.

Don't worry, big batches of regular offered items will be done in the more familiar way for the most part. I think that sending out 75 emails for winners of a Prybaby Lottery doesn't make much sense.

Hans said...

Can somebody please wake up Jenny for us LOL

Joe said...

I was 20 minutes late to enter the lottery. Should've not drunk that much beer yesterday:) This is a beautiful piece of old school prybaby and the winner of the lottery will be very happy!! Great work Peter. And I appreciate all the work that you have done to please us customers.

beardy said...

Brilliant idea peter!

This gives everyone an equal chance. I like it!

Nick said...

Peter - thank you, this is a great idea. And thank you for you talent and creations.
I was disabled for quite a while (not that I wasn't online most of the time before and after ;-), and I only ever managed to buy one of your pieces of art. I never used a bot at your request. I hope you find a way to do this even with larger runs (it's software, trust me, it's not rocket science).
f the critics.
And do the google ads as someone else suggested, you deserve the dough.
Thanks again and Best Regards.

spiff d: said...

I think we need more titanium mini/keychain Prybaby Peter.
maybe nano size be great too...
(thicker/non-flat type :)