Will Upper Deck survive the loss of equal partner with Topps in the eyes of Major League Baseball?
Those of us who grew up in an era when you bought cards just as much for the gum as you did the cards know that even Topps hasn’t always had the rights to use team and league logos for its trading cards.
One look back at some early 1970s basketball sets is graphic evidence of that. I vividly remember trying to figure out why all of the guys in those sets seemed to have their shirts on backwards. Was the photographer trying to make sure the guys at the plant didn’t have any trouble trying to identify the players? Were the players great practical jokers? Did they get out of the shower in a hurry and not look in the mirror? It was a funny sight but without any competition, we didn’t know any better and it wasn’t something that made us all decide that cards weren’t worth having.
The NBA Players Association had given Topps rights to produce cards but there was some hangup over using the logos on the cards themselves. They could produce stickers with logos, but that’s it. I still collected with a fervor and the lengths to which Topps used to go to avoid using logos and trademarks made for some pretty interesting cards.
I think Upper Deck will be just fine. The company is known for being pretty creative so I would suspect they’ll come up with unique ways to present next year’s cards. A number of collectors have complained for years about UD’s customer service. While things may have improved, maybe the lack of a deal with MLB will make them embrace their customers even more to keep them in the fold.
A man who consigned some vintage baseball cards to Mastro Auctions when the company was in the process of disbanding had a difficult time getting his money from the company after the auction. He got in contact with the Chicago Tribune’s "Problem Solver" and here’s the story. We hope most of the consignors who were owed money from the company’s final auctions has been paid or are now in the process of being paid.