Ted M wrote:Clay, it's pretty heavy handed to prescribe usage to other people, especially when you desire a word in common speech to instead be employed in the manner it is used in a very specialized lexicon. ...
Ted, it should go without saying that I was merely expressing my opinions. I don't think disagreement with another opinion constitutes prescribing usage if that were the case, then anyone who has ever disagreed with anybody else here would be prescribing usage, a notion which seems kind of silly to me. But I do think you make a fair point, and believe we're in general agreement (see my post on 02/17/11 12:34 AM), that the term rare has widely (and wildly) varying usage among collectors, and people in general. Ideally, it'd be great if there were some consensus amongst collectors on what rare means, but that's a near-certain pipe dream, which (to repeat what I've already said) leads to at least this more modest hope: any individual collector should (i) formulate and be able to clearly communicate to other collectors what rare means to him or her, and however he/she defines the term, such definition should take into account the wide range of items and levels of scarcity and rarity in the collecting world, and (ii) however such term is defined, he/she should always try to use it in a manner which is consistent with his/her definition. In addition, collectors would agree that the market value of an item does not equate with rarity. i.e., that some expensive collectibles are not rare, and that some inexpensive collectibles can be rare; or put another way, the fact that an item is in high demand or expensive doesn't automatically mean it's rare.
Collectors and people in general often confuse the concepts of demand, value and rarity. These three concepts are quite distinct, and while there is often a correlation among the three, any such correlation(s) are not automatic or absolute. For example, some collectors think Ricky Jay's Cards as Weapons
is rare because it is (or was) in high demand and/or expensive. But if Cards as Weapons
is truly rare, then that means probably 99% of all magic books ever published are rare, which doesn't make any sense to me.
If you are interested, here are some links to GF threads which discuss some issues relating to rarity, how the term rare is used, etc.:
http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubb ... ber=132900
http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubb ... mber=77581