PS5 scalpers are part of the reason that many fans are yet to get a next-gen console, but this group thinks its bad reputation is unfair.
If you're still trying to get hold of a PS5, Sony's stock issues aren't the only reason you're having trouble. Since the very first next-gen launch, scalpers have been preventing fans from being able to obtain a PS5 console.
With many groups making use of bots to snatch up devices in seconds, and others simply overwhelming retailers with sheer numbers, scalpers are the bane of an honest consumer's existence.
After all, with a large percentage of next-gen consoles being bought by resellers, fans are left with only one option if they need a PS5 immediately. And that's to buy it at an incredibly steep mark-up.
Now, one PS5 scalper group is protesting their reputation as the bad guys.
PS5 Scalpers 'The Lab' Defends Its Price Gouging
In a new report from Forbes, PS5 scalper group The Lab attempt to defend its actions.
According to the feature, co-founder of The Lab "Jordan" doesn't believe the group's poor reputation to be justified. The scalper himself believes that the group is very misunderstood, and wants to clear up any confusion.
“There seems to be A LOT of bad press on this incredibly valuable industry and I do not feel that it is justified, all we are acting as is a middleman for limited quantity items,” he said."
Jordan does appear rather confused in this regard, especially as the retailers that the scalpers are buying from are the actual middlemen in this scenario.
With over 25 PS5 units secured by the group in January, each one was reportedly then resold for around £700. Considering that this is roughly a 50% price increase, that's a lot of extra cash for the PS5 scalpers.
“Essentially every business resells their products. Tesco, for example, buys milk from farmers for 26p or so per litre and sells it on for upwards of 70p per litre. No one ever seems to complain to the extent as they are currently doing towards ourselves."
In Jordan's ideal world, we'd imagine that there would be a reseller who buys that same Tesco milk and resells it for an additional pound.
PS5 Scalper Group Claims It's Actually Helping People
The PS5 scalpers also claim to actually be helping people - although it does appear to be themselves, first and foremost. Talking with Forbes, Jordan wants consumers to know that he's a generous individual.
“I mainly just try and help others now, that’s all that really matters to me," Jordan states. "The whole group came about near the start of the first UK lockdown and it makes me so happy that I can help people make some extra money for themselves.”
With a lot of group members struggling for money in the midst of a pandemic, the user appears to believe that making other consumers (who clearly aren't struggling in the same global issue) pay a little extra is completely okay.
The Lab uses bot software to snatch up PS5s far quicker than users can enter their card details. But everything is okay, as not all of the money goes to the members themselves, they'd have you believe.
“We do a lot for charity as well,” Jordan confirms. “I myself or collectively as a group donate to charity almost monthly at this point. Most notably over the past month we donated a large portion of our membership fees to a foodbank local to me.”
The Lab co-founder did, however, refuse to provide the name of the foodbank or verify this claim.
Tragically, the UK government is currently working on new anti-scalper laws. Small businesses such as The Lab may soon be out of business, thanks to new regulations.
Be sure to check our PS5 Stock Trackers for up to date information about the latest drops as they go live!