Whoops: RK.com got it wrong - it seems you don't have to be a subscriber to the magazine to buy a rug. Sorry, that was our error, but it was an easy one to make - the description of how to use the site was somewhat misleading.
When viewing an item, should the viewer be interested in contacting the vendor, you are told to click on the e gallery webiste link to "login in to view contact details for this vendor". That takes the viewer to a page entitled "HALI.COM LOG IN" which contains the following notice:
"To have access to Auction Price Guide Online and the contact details of HALI e-Gallery Vendors, you need to register. Access to APG Online is exclusive to HALI magazine Subscribers. If you are not a Subscriber, please click here.
If you have not yet registered to HALI.com but would like to, click the continue registration button.
If you are a magazine Subscriber click here to enable your subscription for web access to areas of the site that are available only if you are a subscriber or have registered.
If you have already registered please LOG IN below with your user name and password."
Did the programmer screw up or was he instructed to do this? In any event, the link is wrong but, dear reader, that's not all that's screwed up in the e-gallery. Read RK.com's comments below and realize all the other points raised below are valid and RK.com stands behind them.
No matter which side of the fence you fall on in considering whether or not the rug world "needs" hali magazine opinions about their e-gallery should be less divisive. Firstly, does the e stand for electronic or exclusive? The internet is, well is supposed to be, an open forum where anyone can access information. In reality it has become a “click” to purchase 24 hour storefront and apparently hali decided to get its greedy fingers into the pie.
But according to the imperious hali burghers their store different. Why? because you have to belong to their little fiefdom to partake.
Are those jokers in London for real? What is the purpose of having a website that is accessible by all, setting up an e-gallery for rug merchants to sell their wares and limit it to buyers who have to be subscribers to the magazine. Does fat-boy schaeffer and his cronies think the only people who buy rugs are subscribers to their bi-monthly glossy rag? Or did they setup the e-gallery as a ploy to sell subscriptions and not the vendor’s rugs?
Guess the e in e-gallery does really stand for exclusive, huh?
RK.com has heard various stories of the offers hamburger-danny has made to rug dealers to try and get them to pony up the initiation fees to become e-gallery dealers – some, it is said, have been invited to participate for free. But in the end, even if it is free, what rug seller would want to limit his possibilities of selling a rug to such a small population of potential buyers as only those who subscribe to the magazine? Plus RK.com knows the number of hali subscribers is dwindling - each year for the past several fewer magazines have been sold. Guess that's why hali is trying to fatten their subscription rolls by rounding up dealers into an e-gallery who are trying to lighten the load in your wallet.
The hali fair debacle should have taught even a slow learner like schaeffer something but apparently it didn't and RK.com believes the e gallery will end up in the same sorrowful state, that is if anyone even bothers to look in there.
And speaking of needing to learn something - the way the e gallery has been setup is totally inept. The possibilities of navigating through the offerings is poorly conceived to say the least because there is no way to view pieces without slowing trolling through page after page by refreshing them. Who wants to see what you already saw? That's just the beginning of the mess - the higher resolution large photos for the pieces doesn't function and there are no prices listed anywhere. Is this a secret skull and bones type society or a web rug shoppe?
The e gallery needs a serious remake and rethink if hali and its dopey editor expect to see it succeed. But then again could we expect more from those folks who believe the rug world revolves around them and not visa versa??