From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
Cover artwork of the September 2008 issue
Beckett Pokémon Unofficial Collector (originally titled Beckett Pokémon Collector) was an English-language magazine with information on the Pokémon anime, the Pokémon Trading Card Game, the games and other Pokémon-related media. It was in circulation from September 1999 to July 2010 and was the longest-running publication dedicated to Pokémon. Beckett Pokémon Unofficial Collector was published by Beckett Media, and the editor of the magazine at the time of closure was Doug Kale.
While Beckett was often the first English-language print source to report on developments in Japan regarding the Pokémon franchise, it was also known to occasionally report false information. Beckett was the first publication of any kind to report information about Pokémon Platinum, through the December 2007 issue.
The magazine had contained, among other things, listings of prices for Pokémon trading cards. In addition to Pokémon coverage, the magazine also occasionally featured "Bonus sections" on other games and anime, such as Digimon, Dragon Ball Z, Yu-Gi-Oh! and Webkinz.
The magazine contained a variety of Pokémon-related content aside from the regular monthly sections. Featured content would often consist of console and game reviews, strategies for the Pokémon Trading Card Game, coverage of new Pokémon and forthcoming games as they were announced in Japan, anime and movie coverage, among other topics.
Beckett Pokémon Unofficial Collector often hosted contests to win prizes such as plush Pokémon, Pokémon playsets, Pokémon merchandise and full boxes of Trading Card Game cards. Merchandise such as booster packs were also occasionally offered as incentives for purchasing or renewing a subscription to the magazine.
In 2007, Beckett Pokémon Unofficial Collector held a "cards for kids" campaign which asked readers to donate unwanted duplicate Pokémon cards which would be distributed to children in hospitals and extended care facilities, along with a copy of the magazine. This was not the first year the magazine held this campaign — in a previous unspecified year, over 100,000 cards were sent in by readers.
There were several sections of the magazine which recurred in most, if not all, issues of the magazine:
- Beckett Pokémon Hot List: A list of top-selling cards in Japan.
- Beckett's Ultimate Guide: a new Pokémon is featured every month.
- The Real-Life Pokémon: A report on a featured Pokémon which resembles or is based on a real-life animal.
- Collector's Corner: Photos of readers' Pokémon collections.
- Pokémon Price Guide: A main selling point of the magazine, especially in its earliest years of publication. This section is a detailed estimated price guide of the value of all current TCG cards from the Base Set up until the most recent English expansion as well as all English-released promotional cards. In older issues, the price guide also included information on Japanese cards and other collectibles such as Topps trading cards, Pokémon Action Flipz, and even various Pokémon merchandise and manga issues.
- Art Gallery: fan art submitted by readers. Beckett was also known to publish fan-made cards as well.
- Fun Trivia: The closing section of the magazine.
Lawsuit with The Pokémon Company International
On July 16, 2010, The Pokémon Company International filed a lawsuit against Beckett Media. The lawsuit argues that Beckett's use of Pokémon card images and other artwork violates TPCi's copyright. This lawsuit was the result of Beckett Media ignoring TPCi's earlier requests to remove their copyrighted material.
In late September 2010, magazine subscribers received a notice that the magazine was going to be canceled, most likely due to the aforementioned lawsuit. Subscribers were to later receive issues of Beckett Game Strategyst, which would have included information about Pokémon games. However, in June 2011, Beckett Game Strategyst was canceled as well. Subscribers would instead receive issues of Beckett Fun Online Games.
In other countries
Between 2000 and 2001, an Italian edition of Beckett Pokémon Collector was released. Rather than a separate magazine with similar contents but made in Italy, it was a straight translation of the American magazine, up to the mail and the Art Gallery sections with the English names and addresses of the original readers replaced with fake Italian ones. The fact was obvious since the magazine published no address to send letters to and many kids wrote their name, age and town on their drawings, blatantly contradicting what was written underneath (such as a drawing stated as coming from "Marco, Age 11" with the words "Drew age 6" clearly written on the drawing itself).