This is the impression I got...people not selling to unknowns.
I am used to this in the luxury watch world. Would not have thought it happened in shoes. Although this "exotic shell shortage" reminds me of the 'elusive' stainless steel Rolex Daytona. Fabricated shortage to drive up demand...long lists of waiting customers and not being able to walk in off the street about buy it if you aren't one of the 'elite'.