I think there are some disagreements.
"These sellers are predatory with those practices, their products are weapons-grade hobby killers that are deceptively marketed as beginner telescopes while being nothing more than facilities."
Ah, there it is! I stand by this, and I hope you'll be able to see where the distinction lies...
There is a group of people who play arbitrage with products (and as I say up-thread, they are wholly product agnostic) who hock goods that they can arrange a deal on to make a profit. On the surface, you might say that's business- and it certainly is for them; it's how they make their money.
BUT- and here's the central thesis, they are not of the astronomy community and they peddle these telescope facsimiles (arguably) more adeptly on Amazon than the credible manufacturers do. They absolutely ARE predatory because they offer compensation to people who leave them one-star reviews, they engage in gamesmanship of the Amazon algorithms with their high-low pricing schemes, among other surprisingly sophisticated practices that are all designed to lure people to their goods (again, most of them would- and likely do the exact same thing for toasters, selfie sticks, sporting goods, you name it). The Wallstreet Journal offers an expose- since I cannot post a link, Google "How Scammers in China Manipulate Amazon- WSJ" to see it and learn. Image for a moment the outrage this community would express if Celestron or our favorite retailers did something like that. Who among us wouldn't be clamoring to be first in line to call that predatory? That introduces a tier of products that serve to derail the interest of curious, potential astronomy enthusiasts at a far higher rate than the products we like to call beginner telescopes. And as I said in the post that seems to have originally caught your eye, the Big Names have nothing to offer that is effective at preserving market space from these products.
I am not passing judgement on things that don't achieve TOA150 standards. They barely approximate the standards of Meade or Celestron beginner scopes, but that's not the core problem. If there's a disagreement with me, it would have to be that these sellers are offering an honest product as credible suppliers, and that these telescopes are being marketed responsibly. I say I struggle to see where the disagreement lies, because I KNOW you cannot believe that to be true. You seem to be arguing that value can be pulled from these telescopes- and that's a different offshoot of the discussion. It potentially could to some degree- with the appropriate front-side expectation management that doesn't exist.
Edited by Creedence, 23 July 2021 - 12:57 PM.