There is a balance between the search for profit and enjoyment of the game. Yes, shockingly you read that sentence correctly. I have many times talked about the fine balance between reputation and profit. At some point if you are known as a person who will take advantage of anything it will creep up on you and players will stop making deals with you.
Every deal that is made between two players, buying or selling or trading will give you a boost or a drop in your reputation. Even the deal that I talked about yesterday hopefully left the player with the knowledge that I wasn't attempting to slight him on his offer.
The key is to approach every deal as if it was the first of many deals you will make with this person. Granted that most players do not look at who they are buying from on the Auction House. Their only concern is who has the lowest cost for the item that they want. But when you get out into the wild wild west of trade chat, your reputation is your lifeblood.
There are players on the server that I do most of my work at that have stellar reputations. They are known for beings good negotiators. They are known to be able to give good deals (including the free with materials deal that many use as a loss leader to get customers in). There are other players that are known to be troublesome in their deals. This includes the buying of spots for epic raids.
As Mists start to drift toward middle age in respects to being an expansion, more and more sales of 'raid spots' occur in trade chat. 500g for a guarantee mount all the way up to 10,000g. You will also see the creation of gold runs where players will throw in 500g at first and then bid gold for an item they want. At the end of the run the profits are split among the players that finished the raid. This again can also be an excellent way of making gold over a 3 hour period. (I'm one of those people that will join the raid but rarely buy anything.)
The reputation that someone has for putting these raids together determine just how many players will join. If they know that there are going to be troublesome spots, including arguments and questions of integrity on dividing the spoils, then players won't join. This is where your reputation that you have built in your smaller trades can affect your larger more adventurous exploits.
Keep your own mental reputation in mind with every deal you do this weekend. Did it go well? What profit did you make and what did it really cost you? You might be surprised at what answers you get.
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