Well, it kind of depends on what you mean by "Hasbro". If you mean Dan or Ryan or Dwight, then no, of course they don't make huge, unilateral decisions for the entire company, and maybe they are doing everything in their power to fix this. But if you actually mean Hasbro, then yes, they could dramatically ameliorate the situation by taking two decisive, concrete actions:
1. Immediately discontinue single-store exclusive practices.
2. Manufacture enough product to cover pre-orders taken by all of their retailers.
I understand that fan-channel exclusives are a preferable avenue for some releases. The Hellfire Club boxed set is an example. There is no reason in the world that Moon Knight needs to be a Walgreens exclusive. There is no reason in the world that Storm & Thunderbird needs to be sold only at Target. What, realistically, are Walgreens and Target and Walmart going to do if Hasbro stops single-store exclusives? Not carry Marvel Legends? That's absurd. Marvel Legends is a collector-targeted product. Yes, Grandma wondering through Walmart might pick up an Iron Man for her grandson's birthday present, but I think a much larger percentage of the purchases are being made by adult collectors buying figures for themselves. And adult collectors will find their toys at the place that makes it easiest for them. They just will.
Are Department stores maybe going to stop carrying other Hasbro or Marvel products unless they get their regular sweetheart deals? Maybe that's not as absurd, but it would be highly unlikely and, frankly, stupid. Hasbro's Hasbro. Selling Marvel toys. Marvel! And Star Wars. And Transformers. And G.I. Joe. They need to throw some weight around at somebody other than their fans for a change.
That was really great of Dan to acknowledge the issue. He's passionate, I can tell. He's a great hype man. But until something actually changes, it's just lip-service from the hype man. Don't say that you're sorry and that you hear us because how many times has this SAME. EXACT. SCENARIO played out in just the past few months?
If figures are released as fan-channel exclusives, then retailers would have to compete for business. And you know who I'm going to buy from assuming uniform MSRP? The store with the best customer service. The store that makes an effort to care about customer concerns. Stores may demonstrate attention to these areas by taking two decisive, concrete actions:
1. Ensuring that pre-orders are never canceled under any circumstances that are beyond the customer's control.
2. Placing safeguards (such as captchas) to ensure that bots can't place pre-orders.
Stores that cared to implement these two policies would get the majority of my business. Obviously I can't speak for anyone but myself, but I bet they'd get the business of a lot of people on these boards as well.
Dan, thank you for acknowledging the issue and for bringing the hype. I appreciate you. Now tell me how the next time is going to go: fans first, as Hasbro promises, or fans last as Hasbro consistently demonstrates? What are you going to be tweeting next Friday, Dan? Is it going to be "Thanks, guys. We listened, and we're glad everyone had fun today", or is it going to be "Sorry, guys. We hear your frustrations. We're working on it"?
Hasbro needs to get real. Adult collectors do not have the time for this kind of stuff. Folks are starting to rage quit. I see it on here. I see it on Reddit. I see it on other boards. I see it in real life. Hasbro is poised to start hemorrhaging fans and revenue. They are custodians of some very important and very lucrative brands, and the mismanagement of those brands is getting worse, not better. It's time for Hasbro to take action. Those actions right up there at the top of this post. So what's it going to be?