In a very long feature article running in The New York Times Magazine, author Jake Halpern explores the world of debt brokers and buyers through the eyes of two veteran collection professionals.
Specifically, the piece dives headlong into the Buffalo, N.Y. debt buying and collection industry and the culture unique to companies in and around the city.
Adapted from a forthcoming book, Bad Paper: Chasing Debt From Wall Street to the Underworld, the article, titled “Paper Boys,” details the experiences of the two men as they navigate the very gray area of buying and collecting on cheap, old debt accounts.
Unlike many similar articles, this feature was written in cooperation with the subjects. They explain that even the guys who try to do it right must use tactics that fall into legally gray areas, especially when dealing with unscrupulous or downright criminal “competition” in the secondary debt buying market.
It’s a fascinating read and well worth the time. Check it out.
The article also includes a link to an interactive online game that can be played as either a debtor or a collector. It’s…something.