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View Full Version : Explanation of Pro Merchandise Signing Agreement



06-07-2002, 05:36 AM
To fans and all who is concerned,

I’ve been reading the posts on the forums and I have decided to give some more explanations because it seems some people are getting mislead and there are some facts being miscontorted.

I have kept silent for awhile because I do not want to start any arguments or fires, I just want to clarify my position.

This was my exact announcement at my event: I announced that there were 9 pros that would sign autographs but not sign merchandise items such as cues, cases, balls,etc.

I also announced that they would be happy to sign anything else such as pictures, magazines, paper, etc. and they did sign to many fans.

I also explained in several seperate announcements why we were doing this and that was because many people abuse this privilege by getting the pros autograph and then selling it to other people. At the Patriot Cup many fans brought 5-8 cueballs and shirts, etc at one time for us to sign. It sometimes got a little out of hand and many players complained to me and I completely understood their position. The pros got no compensation and their name is being exploited to consumers who wouldn't have to pay for their autographs in the first place if they got the autograph themselves since it was actually free in the first place.

This was not my original idea but several pros brought up their concerns of fans abusing autographs for money and so this agreement was made before the event started in a unanimous decision by all 9 invited pros to not sign merchandise but they COULD sign anything else.

And the money made went to the players, the cost of the product, and to the charity. I made no profits off this(I even put back in my share of the merchandise cut back in-I was the host after all!). It just gave me more to give back to the players and thank them for coming to my small purse event and prevent autograph injustices.

I did announce several times that the pros would be happy to sign anything else, but perhaps I will have to announce that everytime so there are no mistakes. And perhaps we will have line-ups at autograph sessions (as suggested by others) to have fans pay a fee and then have items signed. And perhaps we will have free items for fans to get autographs. Whatever it is , I will try to find a balance.

Thanks for your voice,
Charlie Williams

Q-guy
06-07-2002, 07:04 AM
Sounds like a logical explanation. I would not even make such an announcement. If it comes up deal with it on an individual bases and quietly. Very few people, (those with cueballs , etc.) fall into that category anyway. You run the risk of coming off looking bad or being misunderstood, like what happened here. The pros just need a prepared remark to say if asked such as, "Sorry I cant sign certain merchandise due to prier agreements with dealers." People will understand. Perception is everything in dealing with the public.

MikeM
06-07-2002, 07:43 AM
Thanks for the replies Charlie. I hope you continue to monitor what goes on on this board. There are many intelligent folks with an interest in improving the state of the sport, both professionlly and at the amateur level. A lot of good ideas here. Of course we have a few bozos as well, but what can yo do. I for one, hope you are successful in rejuvenating the men's pro game.

MM

BTW I met a friend of yours the other night. Shot with Terry Thai, he' got a real good game.