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  • Patch of the Day????

    I would like opinions about the "Patch of the Day" being limited to so few, 2010. I know that quite a few were in some Staff hands, more or less, due to arrangements with certain T.P. individuals.

    Personally, I felt it was not a wise decision, and was truly unfair to the kids, as well as staffers who had to work odd shifts and had very little chance to get there early enough, or at all. There really was no reason to make the limit. If they had made 10-20 thousand, they still would have sold them most likely, and made more profit as well. Then we would not see them going on eBay already for hundreds of dollars.

    An individual who said "he was the one that decided to do it" informed me that the only complaints he had were from Staff, that the kids were not unhappy at all. I find this to be unlikely. Hopefully when we have appraisals on line, they will get feed back that is not simply pie in the sky, made up.

    Again, only personal opinion, and it was already noted in Jamboree Today it would not happen, but they should take orders for the whole set and then make enough to allow all participants who wanted them to get them if they wished. After the fact. Sort of like the "Farly's Folly", infamous stamp error propagated by the Postmaster General, Farley. He printed a huge quantity of stamps to duplicate an error he made; effectively, he cut off the scarcity and stopped the speculation and so on.

    Also thought that patch trading was overboard and likely should be restricted to certain locations and times. That way kids would do more activities, and possibly the trading could be more closely monitored.

    Finally, maybe it is time to take a breath and start to limit to somewhat limit the quantity of patches being put out. Many kids likely cannot afford to buy them in such quantity, so they simply do not get the opportunity.

    So, will wait to see the thoughts.

    Still, the event itself was great overall. Many opportunities, especially in transportation and communication to Staff. Will be interesting to see what occurs in 2013. Likely to be very spartan.

  • #2
    I hate to say that I agree with the sentiments regarding patch trading this time around. It's always been a big part of Jamboree, but I never recall seeing so much un-Scoutlike behavior surrounding it. I saw adults who were visitors taking advantage of adults AND youth, using middlemen to trade for popular sets from kids and then swiftly take their daily take to the big memorabilia show in Fredricksburg that night. I saw patches on blankets on the road near QBSA that still had the price tags on them from the night before!

    Let's also take a moment to discuss fake patch sets. Now, the Hooters set has been a time-honored Jamboree/NOAC tradition, but the line was crossed last Jamboree with fake council sets, and that continued this time around. I saw the man peddling the Avatar set using a (likely) non-Scout youth and a stack of bagged patches to actively rip off Scouts who thought what they were getting was the real thing. I watched the kid come back and forth from this man's blanket on the roadside, the man handing him another stack of bags and telling him to go a mile down the road to trade where the kids hadn't seen the patches yet. It was sick. Yet there was no convincing some kids you'd meet along the way that the set from a "Visiting Troop" from Belize was fake. And they probably had no idea the kid they were trading with was a double agent of sorts. They were even introducing new border colors and variations as the days went on to make kids trade more. I bet you'll be seeing those kids' patch sets on eBay this week.

    The patches have gotten out of hand. What should be a way to identify different councils and the uniqueness of their locales has turned into ways of out-patching the others, trying to make your set the "hot" set of the Jamboree. Is there any reason for a council from Utah to have a 40-patch set? Or a council from Michigan to have a 20-patch set? Why should every patrol in every troop have a different JSP? Heck, I saw "jacket patches" this week that would have no hope of actually fitting on the back of a jacket! Maximum one patch per troop, one patch for staff, one jacket patch, one OA flap. That's it. Maybe even more restrictive than that and say one patch for youth, one for adult leaders, one for staff, plus OA and jacket patches. Actually enforce size and shape regulations. After all these things go on BSA uniforms, so they should actually adhere to guidelines.

    There also needs to be set guidelines on the conduct of visitors to the Jamboree (i.e., no credentials around your neck and a patch blanket? Personal walk to the parking lot from Jamboree Security), and a revamp of how the actual Jamboree program is offered so that there's incentive for the kids to actually go do stuff instead of spending their week staring at a road behind a blanket. If there's no 20-patch set for a kid to be tracking down, there's more time for him to be participating in the once-in-a-lifetime opportunities the Jamboree program offers.

    It's not friendship trading anymore, and it needs to be. Profiteering and preying on kids should NOT be a part of Jamboree, and trading should be done only by paid participants. Frankly, I don't understand why visitors are so rampantly allowed into an event we all pay out the nose to go to, even if they can't participate in all the activities, but that's just me.


    • #3
      I personally think the "Patch of the day" idea was terrible. Of the contingents that I visited and the local kids that I knew, none of them were able to get the "Patch of the day" and none of them thought it was a good idea.

      Now as for the rest, I'll caveat this by saying I'm a minor trader. I collect one council and mostly OA from Western PA. That being said, I thought the trading was seriously out of hand. The scary thing was how cutthroat the kids were. The local guys were telling me some of the outrageous requests they were getting for what I would consider to be mediocre patches or patch sets. I also agree that some of the Scout Executives need to take a hard look at what they're sending their contingents to the Jamboree with. Some of the sets were absolutely gorgeous, inventive and totally reflected the lcoal character, history or charm of a particular area. Some were horrible overkill (Great Salt Lake for example). Others were overkill for the contrived scarcity of the issues (Star Wars and Marvel sets for example). I went to several campsites of Western PA contingents to trade but also to shoot the breeze and the recurring theme was how disappointing it was that no one wanted to trade 1:1 (youth or adult) that it was a game of one upping the other guy. I have to say the best time I had visiting the Jamboree was trading and catching up with old friends or trading and making new ones. One site in particular, I didn't know the leaders but ended up talking to them for the better part of an hour about all sorts of random things. The kids in that troop were lucky to have them as leaders, but sadly that's the part of patch trading that ends up lost on the to build personal relationships. I can't tell you how many youth offered to trade sets or JSP's with me because they knew I was trading with adults 1:1 on a decent, legit set with no strings attached. One of the best parts of the visit for me was outright giving away a few patches. There were some visiting leaders from Washington that saw me trade a patch from DC and they didn't have anything to trade, so I just gave them the patches. Did the same for a kid (and his father) who were getting jerked around by one of traders along the visitor entrance. The look on the kid's face totally made it worthwhile. The kid's dad and I talked for about 20 minutes afterwards and he was just shocked that someone would do that. I explained to him that when I was a youth, I had several leaders and adults who did the same for me and that it was no big deal and that I'm glad that I had the opportunity to pay back the generosity of my predecessors and help make that kid's day.

      I personally feel like the "spoof" patches and fakes need to be abolished. If the patches (like the Hooters, some of the Star Wars, and the Avatar sets) aren't legitimate issues, you should be escorted from the premises. I feel like each contingent should be restricted to a set of patches (no special contingent or contrived rarity sets) and that they should be commonly available to the youth to eliminate any supply side issues. I believe that National should regulate the sets and post each design on the internet and make them available for viewing on site at the Jamboree with production runs. This gives knowledge to the youth and hopefully enables positive trading. Sadly, I don't think anything will happen and the next Jamboree will be worse than this one. With all the patch theft at this Jamboree I shudder to think about what will happen in 2013.

      Just my $.02


      • #4
        I admit I'm a trader, and fortunately or unfortunately as you may see it I passed the bug off to my son. It has gotten out of hand from recent past experiences. it's gotten to the point of "How do I mess you over in the trade," and not the friendship trades as it use to be.

        And the worse part of it is that you now have thieves going through stuff in people's tents and focusing on patches.


        • #5
          Well, you've got two issues going in this thread now.

          I'll speak to the one in your thread title 1st, the patch of the day.

          On the Trading Posts FB page, whenever there was a complaint about this, they posted this stock answer over and over again:

          >> Jamboree Trading Post While we understand your frustration, the Patch of the Day was designed to be just part of a series of events honoring this historic Jamboree. The number of patches was limited to 2010 to mark the anniversary year. We know that collectibles... uniquely commemorate the event so we offered a wide variety of exclusive items. However, we hope your Jamboree experience was wonderful and can override this specific issue. Thank you for sharing your concerns.


          • #6
            Now to speak to the other issue now in this thread: Patch trading

            In our council, I believe it was focused on too much beforehand in our contingents pre-jambo meetings. Special sets ordered that were included in our jambo fee (whether we wanted them or not) and then more sets offered to purchase so the boys could trade. There wasn't one meeting where patch trading wasn't brought up and encouraged. So probably boys who would never have even had any interest in patch trading, started to think it was the thing to do. Multiply this by hundreds of councils across the USA with adults probably doing the same thing, and you can see how this monster was created.

            (This message has been edited by CubScoutJo)


            • #7
              You really want to be disgusted? Look on eBay. Day One Patch of the Day is going for almost $150.

              Instead of relying on gimmicks, maybe supply division should try having decent merchandise for sale to draw customers into the trading posts. You usually have to go to a state fair to find products of similar value and quality. How many throw-away LED noise makers do you really need? I really tried to spend money there, but the only thing which interested me were the on-site "laurel" jamboree patches and hiking staff medallions. Hint -- a selection of nice gifts to take home to mom would be a big seller.

              Although I have a small patch collection (which I started as a youth) I'm not much of a trader. I didn't trade a single patch at jambo (although I gave away quite a few), I did trade for one of the Blues Brothers t-shirts.

              Consequently, I wasn't involved in trading enough to see the problems Skeptic and Bando described. I can tell you that most of the boys in my troop had never been involved in trading prior to the jamboree and most really got into it and enjoyed it. Just based on the buzz in the campsite, many of them would probably say trading patches was one of the things they enjoyed most about jamboree. I would hate to see that curtailed.

              I don't think any of the boys see patch trading as a prelude to making friends and meeting people. It's all about the hunt and thrill of the chase, driven largely by the desire to assemble the cool sets or "halos." (For the uninitiated, halos are sets of patches where the shoulder strips are arranged in a circle around and/or into a central patch.) One of the really hot halos was a set of surfboard patches from Orange Co., CA. Once you collected the full set, you went to the troops' campsite and they gave you the center patch. I thought that was pretty cool.

              One of the "rules" regarding patches this year was that they weren't supposed to include trademarks or copyrighted material, even with permission from the owners. Of course that was routinely ignored. Some of the hottest patches included commercial products.

              Say what you will, it was those "hot" sets which created the buzz and interest in trading and attracted a lot of newbie traders into the action. And truthfully, after dinner, there wasn't much going on besides trading.

              My son had an interesting insight that he didn't like trading with the guys with blankets set up on the side of the road. He thought they were too cutthroat. He hung around and traded with the guys walking around talking to the guys with the blankets.


              • #8
                Yes there still are good traders out there, and yes some do go above and beyond. I just got so disgusted after reading about the thefts, esp. what happened to a friend of mines son, that I forgot the package my son received. Can't believe i forgot about his package.

                As I stated I got him hooked on patch trading, and I am trying to teach him to be polite, meet people, shake hands at the end of the trade, etc. One leader we met on the Metro to and from the parade didn't have any patches to trade, but was goign to send one to him when she got home form jambo. WELLLLL he got a package yesterday with a jambo necker, 3 JSPs form her council, Jambo visitor's patch, NESA patch, ovesized jambo JSP, and jambo gummies. I wish I would have had the camera when he opened the package b/c he was ecstatic, and I was green with envy Any way she will be getting some patches from him, and me for that matter, as a thank you b/c she went above and beyond!


                • #9
                  Having never been to a Jambo before this one, I was astonished at the trading....walking around on Tuesday morning and boys are already out there with blankets set up...and it only got worse as the week went on.

                  Like most of you here, I did most of my trading as a friendship guesture...1:1 with the other staff members I worked with or a for a patch I thought looked good. I even ran into a few Scouts from my wife's home town in Puerto Rico and just gave them a few of my Council's JSPs.

                  As for the Patch of the Day...everyone was complaining about supply's decision of limiting the numbers. There were a few staffers I worked with who were able to pull complete sets. Since we worked overnight, they got off work then went and stood in line at the trading post at 8am for the 9am opening. Actually one guy was able to pick me up the bus patch on the first day, but I told him to give it to someone else since I didn't want to waste my time staning in line for 10 days straight....but on the other hand, if I knew how profitable they would have been, I could have paid for my entire trip with just two sets!

                  Actually one guy put together a complete set and gave it to another staffer since that's the only thing he wanted from the entire Jambo. To be honest, they really weren't that appealing to me, the only one I really liked was the International Day Patch, but that's probably becasue I did most of my Scouting as a youth overseas.

                  As for the other Jambo merch, there really wasn't anything of quality...I only picked up a couple t-shirts, the fully embroidered Jambo patches, the laurel patches, and the Cobalt Blue Staff Mug. Although, by the end of the week, almost everything was sold, BSA could have slapped the Jambo logo on anything and it would have sold.


                  • #10
                    Kids are pretty savvy or get that way fast. Our boys didn't really experience any problems with trading. It only takes one or two bad trades before they figure it out. Some kid demanding 6 of your patches for one if his usually gets blown off by everyone except the serious trader that thinks he just has to have "that" patch. Towards the end of the Jambo, we had a couple of kids who set up a screened in canopy along a road complete with a table, light, fan and water cooler. They were not getting much business. We usually had the older kids who had traded before teach the younger kids the ropes so they wouldn't get taken.

                    As far as the patch of the day. Waste of valuable time. To get one, you had to care and you had to be in line early and there was work to be done in camp. We didn't release scouts until breakfast KP was done, slop buckets were back from the grinder, the site policed and the trash taken to the dumpster. If you've been around most troops for any length of time, you know how "fast" that all happens.

                    As far as incentive to do other things, the rockers seemed to work pretty well for our guys. They need a goal and want to get something for their efforts. While we had some who could care less, we had others that planned out their days as to which areas they could hit and how many activities they could get done to finish the requirements for the rocker patches. They traded on the way there and back. Once they had their rockers earned, they turned their attention to doing the things they liked again and trading.


                    • #11
                      That patch of the day stuff is just nonsense. Somebody at supply division (maybe several somebodies) is an idiot.

                      My son came back with a gallon ziploc bag of patches he traded for at jambo. Most are JSPs or CSPs, and a few OA patches. Some are really cool, some are pretty colors, some are just a little goofy and some appear to be kinda boring. I'm not big into collecting but I'm pretty sure few, if any, of the patches in his new collection are worth a whole lot - except, he has a story to go with each of them and he's happy to have them. They have meaning and value to him regardless of what they're worth to others. I thought that was kind of the point of patch trading at jambo and am glad he had that experience.

                      Now he also told me that on one occasion, another scout tried to steal a handful of patches off his mat (heh, my son is neither quiet nor slow - he got the patches back), and that one of the young fellows in his jambo troop nearly traded at a 20:1 ratio for some patch (somebody stopped the kid) and that kid did almost nothing else all day. After the 20:1 incident, son's jambo troop leaders wouldn't let the kids in his troop do any trading at all until after dinner each night. And I'm glad for that, too. Evidently, common sense was less in evidence in some other contingents.


                      • #12

                        You gotta love how this guy managed to get 4 full sets when you were only supposed to be able to get 1 per day.

                        Honestly I don't like many of them.


                        • #13
                          "You gotta love how this guy managed to get 4 full sets when you were only supposed to be able to get 1 per day."

                          no. you could buy only one at a time. nothing stopping you getting back in line.


                          • #14
                            What bothered me most about the patch of the day was that at 8am, standing in line, were 95% adults. The boys never got a shot at them since they were busy doing what they were supposed to do.

                            I am not sure what it was that the adults were supposed to be doing every morning from 8am to 930am, but I know that all the staff I was with were busy working.


                            • #15
                              emb021, I highly doubt you could have gotten back in line and managed to get even a second patch, much less 4. Lines at the Trading Posts were reaching blocks long by the 8AM hour. And, yes, they were all adults.