The latest Stinger Report covers a touchy subject in the industry – should the distributor be eliminated? It’s not the first time I’ve heard of this subject being discussed as in the 2005 State of the Industry Report by Play Meter magazine had responses from operators about that very subject. What would the purpose be? To see if the industry as a whole could be more profitable. The theory is that by eliminating the distributor and buying directly from the manufacturer the operator could save money in an “eliminating the middle man” strategy. IT (makers of Golden Tee) attempted this already with some success but it is still far form the norm. Stinger looks at several factors that could lead to major changes within the arcade industry, including Just-In-Time Stocking (deployed in vending), E-Payment and E-Distribution. Like any major change, something such as this takes time and in some cases doesn’t occur due to a number of reasons. Distributors have their advantages especially when it comes to understanding the region they are located in – my local distributor has been very helpful in getting me started with my arcade.