My letter to KODAK, will reply with response. Please consider doing the same.

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by Motiv, Dec 8, 2017.

  1. Motiv

    Motiv Member

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    My letter to KODAK, will reply with response. Please consider doing the same. We need to get together to save the future of film.



    Dear Sir/ Madam

    I am writing to you, motivated, and optimistic about the future of film. I am 27, and the owner of several film,
    and digital cameras. I contact you as an individual with no opportunity of financial gain from the request that
    I’m about to make, but first I must explain why I have written to you.

    I have a son, who is nearly 2. He has had to endure, and embrace my love for film, even at such a young age.
    He is the subject of many a picture. Sometimes he smiles, sometimes he skews his face, and sometimes he
    even ignores me completely. I have captured moments of happiness, of sadness, and lots of temper tantrums.
    These moments I will keep forever, and I can only thank you Kodak for allowing me to do this through the
    medium of film.

    When he turns 18 years old the pictures will be shown to an audience of many, and I hope that if he gets
    married I will be able to embarrass him with these candid pictures. When he has children, I hope that he will
    look at his old Dads pictures. I hope he will get the opportunity to feel the same excitement that I felt, as he
    takes and develops pictures of his children.

    I must apologize as I am sure this sentiment is very obvious, but film photography is a caring, delicate process
    that enables us to take our time and interact with a moment. Not only in the split second of a shutter, but in
    the anticipation of what the might be held in the film. For me, there is nothing more exciting than collecting or
    developing images. It could be weeks, months, or years before the images are revealed. It is this anticipation
    that creates a romanticism that cannot be recreated digitally. The resolution is immediate.

    I reach out to you in hope that you might work with the analogue community to develop a new film camera,
    not only for us, but for Kodak’s legacy. Soon there will be a shortage of working film cameras, and with a lack
    of mainstream camera production we will be limited to new “toy” cameras, small start-ups and a few surviving
    SLR, and system cameras. This has the potential to limit the amount of newcomers to the industry and in turn,
    their exposure to film.

    The future of film as hinges on the future of cameras. I applaud recent developments in bringing back older
    films, and the infrastructure to support it. Without new cameras, the efforts that you have made would be
    futile.

    I look forward to you reply,
     
  2. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member
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    I’m supportive of letting suppliers know how their customers feel, but this is too long, uses too many extraneous commas, and doesn’t seem to include a concise “call to action”. Perhaps condense and let them know what you specifically want them to consider doing in response to your feelings. Suggestion: a corporate POC with a very tough hide on APUG/PHOTRIO so we have someone “real” with whom we can engage.

    Asking Kodak to re-engage in a product line, cameras, that they abandon long ago will likely be met with deaf ears.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
  3. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member
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    Oh, and suggest you not refer to us as “analogue” community”... we are “film users”... users of their product.
     
  4. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Member

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    This is simply not true.

    We are swimming in used cameras and will be so for decades to come.[/QUOTE]
     
  5. jim10219

    jim10219 Member
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    I'm lost. Kodak hasn't made good cameras of any kind for decades. They're a much better film company than camera company. And even though they practically invented the digital camera, they never made a decent one. So why write to Kodak to try to convince them to get back into the camera game? They're a company that isn't doing great financially (though a lot better than they were, for sure), so why would they make the investment to go into a whole new market that has so little potential for success? That'll send them right back into bankruptcy. You'd be better off writing to Nikon, Canon, Ricoh, or other digital camera makers and trying to convince them to make film cameras. At least they still have all, or most, of the necessary equipment and experts still on hand to produce such things.

    The problem with any company making film cameras these days is that most people don't and won't shoot film. And companies have been making film cameras for over 100 years now. So the market is super saturated with cheap, high quality film cameras. These days, I buy cameras on a whim that I could have only dreamed of owning 30 years ago. You just can't compete with that. Or shouldn't, anyway.

    If you really want to ensure that film cameras will still be around for your children and grandchildren, teach them camera repair. There's not much money in that, but that's the best way to make sure that there will still be cameras around for another 100+ years.
     
  6. faberryman

    faberryman Subscriber
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    I shoot film and am generally sympathetic with your views, but there is nothing you are doing, or plan to do, with your photos that cannot be done with a digital camera. If you enjoy the anticipation, stop chimping, turn off your rear screen, and decided for yourself how long you want to wait before sticking the SD card in your computer to look at the images. Kodak's stock price has fallen by 80% in the last year, and it is hemorrhaging cash. I don't think setting up a camera manufacturing division is in the cards anytime in the foreseeable future.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Motiv

    Motiv Member

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    I only wrote to Kodak, as I am sitting at work looking at a box of portra 400 thinking about the future of film. I am going to write to other companies as well. I have found that as a community we spend too much time arguing about what the future will look like. We criticise the grammar or choice of words that someone uses, rather than doing anything about it.

    Do the next generation want to have to fix cameras to use them, no.

    We need to give them choice. You have seen how popular instant cameras have become again. Like it or not these cameras will go wrong. I have been fixing a few cameras recently, and it is apparent that some of the component were not designed to last 20 to 30 years.

    If they then decide they want an M6 then great, but we need a low to mid cost entry into film.

    We also need to ensure that film is a feasible option for photography students in the future. Cost is a big part of that.
     
  8. Luckless

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    How many of those used cameras have shutters that are gummed or seized up completely? Or have timing that is totally off? Or parts that have taken damage and need replacement? How many replacements are out there? How many people are left who can do the work required to keep using those cameras and can/are willing to do so at a price that is worth it to photographers?

    How many younger photographers are going to get their hands on a beat up camera as the only thing within their budget at the time, get frustrated due to working with gear in poor condition, and give up?

    The camera market is far from as rosy as many want to make it out to be. It isn't in truly dire straits yet, but I don't consider it to be an excessively comfortable position.
     
  9. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Member

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    Any camera I want I can find and find easily. More cameras are available than money I have to buy them. Given an unlimited budget I'd buy the following:

    Contax G2
    Contax RTS III
    Mamiya 7
    Contax 645
    Fuji GA645Wi
    Fuji Klasse S

    All of these can be found easily and those are rather high end. If I just want a simple 35mm camera there are dozens of models that are available for giveaway prices.
     
  10. afriman

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    Old cameras are great for enthusiasts like us. To win over more of the younger generation, a new, simple to use, nicely packaged and well marketed camera could help a lot. I see no reason why Kodak could not partner up with a manufacturer to bring such a camera to market.
     
  11. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Member

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    There's a simple reason why this will never happen. Film is NOT Kodak's core business. Far from it. Kodak is in very serious financial difficulty and does not have the resources to spend on non core businesses.

    Fujifilm developed several new cameras (GF670, GF670W, Klasse S, Klasse W) and they even stopped making them. Too much competition from used cameras.

    Kodak will never make a serious camera.

    Even their already announced Super 8 movie camera is no where to be found.
     
  12. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member
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    Like Kodak knows how to make cameras? The did make a lot of cameras but none was that good. They did have the Retina but they weren't really made by Kodak. Besides we have enough film cameras we need film not cameras.
     
  13. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member
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    We have plenty of cameras from simple to complex. What kind of features do you have in mind?
     
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  15. paulbarden

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    Wow, the negativity astounds me.
     
  16. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member
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    To effectively pitch this someone needs to provide some data on sales and profit potential. No wild guesses but PROOF that an MBA would be convinced. Emotional appeals are fine but not likely to have the desired impact. Kodak cares about Kodak exec salaries and shareholder returns, not our desire to live in the past.
     
  17. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member
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    Not negativity... it’s a dose of reality. :smile:
     
  18. OP
    OP
    Motiv

    Motiv Member

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    It not necessarily about making a great camera. We are all thinking in an old fashioned way. We need something that captivates the next generation. Something they can just chuck in their bag, take pictures, and then easily share with their mates. A camera that is a stepping stone, something that inspires them.
     
  19. tonyowen

    tonyowen Member
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    The one thing that struck me with the OP's 'draft' was that it was undirected. If you want to stand a chance of some meaningful response then you should identify the person or persons who make the decisions. In other words identify the Chairman/President/CEO of the appropriate division within the global company. Then address your letter directly to that person.

    As is stands at the moment, all you will get. (if you get anything) is a bland reply from a low level "Gofor" without power, authority or influence.

    regards
    Tony
     
  20. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser
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    it is almost the 135th anniversary of the box camera
    you should have suggested they start reintroducing
    box cameras loaded with film, that people expose,
    send back to kodak, have them process the film and
    return the camera filled with more film. give people
    something to anticipate in this immediate fast food life
    with all sorts of renewed interest in antique processes
    olde tyme renditions of pitchers on the inter webs,
    love of lo-fi cameras galore they can renew interest in kodak
    by making themselves kodak again, and start new with what started it all.
    it is just about 1884 all over again ...

    kodak, box camera division
    rochester 8 new york
    they need to start from the bottom up, not top down.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
  21. jawarden

    jawarden Member
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    Perhaps send a letter to Cosina or Fuji, either of which could actually make it happen if they had confidence in the marketplace. I could understand why they would be gun-shy given the lack of sales for their very good cameras of a decade ago, but the economy is different now and who knows? Kodak though? Making film cameras might not be a good fit for them, although licensing might work.
     
  22. afriman

    afriman Subscriber
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    Kodak does appear to be showing renewed interest in producing film. If they are serious enough about that to start producing Ektachrome again, surely it would make sense to stimulate interest with a reasonably priced, good quality Chinese-made camera? Something better than the "Lomo" stuff, something along the lines of those great compact cameras from the 80s. Zoom lens, autofocus, built in flash and of course auto exposure - but with manual options to encourage creativity and learning more about photographic technique. Imagine something like a series of monthly booklets/magazines on film photography, each with a roll or two of film, and with a "free" camera included if you subscribe to all twelve editions. All marketed under the legendary Kodak name and Kodak's familiar yellow and red color scheme. Is this less likely to be a success than a sophisticated, expensive 8mm camera for film students?
     
  23. Pioneer

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    I tell you what. You buy all the used cameras you want. You fight with the ebay scammers and everyone else who is more then happy to sell you their junk as you try to sort through the dross and find your cheap, high quality, used cameras.

    I have played that game for a very long time. I have sent any number of these high quality cameras you speak of for repairs. Even the quality cameras are getting hard to keep running, and they are getting much more expensive to fix.

    I'm tired of using everyone else's hand me downs. It was fun for awhile but now I want new cameras. I want to shoot film without worrying about when the shutter dies or the film transport breaks, or whatever. I'm pretty sure there are others that would like new cameras as well.
     
  24. Sirius Glass

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    There are plenty of Hasselblad replacements and parts.

    E*N*O*U*G*H*!*!
     
  25. afriman

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    This would be an example of what I'm thinking of. Perhaps they could bring out new versions of the Brownies, Instamatics and other Kodak cameras of the past - complete with a history of those cameras. I'm just talking about a broad concept here, and throwing in some ideas. Of course the specifics would have to be well considered and be accompanied with thorough market research.
     
  26. Alan Edward Klein

    Alan Edward Klein Member

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