Shutterbug article: Leica day at RIT

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by eddym, Sep 20, 2008.

  1. eddym

    eddym Member

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    The October 2008 issue of Shutterbug has an interesting article about Leica Day at RIT. Leica quietly purchased 20 M4-2 and M4-P cameras on the open market and donated them to RIT, "to assure that analog photography continues to be a key element of photographic education at the highest levels."

    Kodak also donated 400 rolls of the new Portra 400NC film!

    Kudos to both Leica and Kodak! :smile:
     
  2. beemermark

    beemermark Member

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    Read the article, even Leica couldn't afford new Leicas.
     
  3. mabman

    mabman Member

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    I haven't read the article, but from this brief description I think this is a crafty move on Leica's part - they've taken a number of cameras (at least temporarily) out of the used market, thus keeping demand high (and possibly pushing some people to a new camera if they can't find what they want used - at least in theory), while also generating a tax write-off (assuming they're doing this through a US company - not sure how this applies to a European company if at all). This is in addition to all the goodwill this generates.
     
  4. eddym

    eddym Member

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    To quote Andreas Kaufman, CEO of Leica, in the article:
    "We didn't have any remaining inventory of these classic models... so we had to buy them discreetly at online auctions, attracting as little attention as possible so the prices wouldn't skyrocket. Despite our best efforts, the prices did go up, and it took us over 18 months to acquire 20 M4-2 and M4-P models in excellent condition. All were completely reconditioned at Leica USA in Allendale, New Jersey, and fitted with new 50mm f2.5 Summarit-M lenses." (Shutterbug 10/08, p. 145)

    They spent $50,000 on this "crafty move." As you imply, the price of used equipment did indeed rise, so maybe you are right. But that sounds to me like a pretty small dark cloud compared to a big silver lining for RIT and analog photography in general. If this results in more student photographers committed to film photography, then I hope Leica does indeed profit from its craftiness.
     
  5. elekm

    elekm Member

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    I'm very impressed by the thought and generosity of Leica to do this.
     
  6. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    It is nice of Leica to do this. Could other camera companies do this also?

    Jeff
     
  7. mabman

    mabman Member

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    I'm not saying it's a bad thing, just that it may be more nuanced for Leica than "let's donate some cameras".
     
  8. AutumnJazz

    AutumnJazz Member

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    Yet another reason for me to want to go to this school. :smile:
     
  9. Mahler_one

    Mahler_one Member

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    You know, why don't we all just stop the parsing and admit that Leica was extremely generous.

    Ed
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Good for Leica!
     
  11. naeroscatu

    naeroscatu Subscriber

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    remarcable gesture; I woudn't expect less from Leica.
     
  12. marke

    marke Member

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    I think it would be a great idea for other camera companies to purchase a bunch of Leicas and donate them. :D
     
  13. elekm

    elekm Member

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    I think it would be great to see some of the major Japanese players donate some of the film cameras that they still produce, which pretty much narrows it down to Nikon, Canon and possibly Cosina.
     
  14. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Mamiya America Co. (including Toyo), Hasselblad and Linhof through HP Marketing all have had pretty good educational discount programs, and probably still do, and I suspect Sinar does as well.
     
  15. AutumnJazz

    AutumnJazz Member

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    David, how would one be able to get their hands on one of those discounts? (I'm a high school student.)
     
  16. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Look at the US distributor websites and see what the current offers are.

    For some, like Linhof and Sinar, you may need to contact the representative and ask if they have any educational discount programs, since they're not widely advertised. For instance, a representative may let instructors of photography at universities know about a discount that's available to their programs or their students, but they might not keep their website up to date, and they might not spend money to advertise such discounts in magazines. I know that Bob Salomon has announced the availability of educational discounts for Linhof occasionally on the LF forum, for instance, but I don't think I've ever seen them advertised elsewhere. Sinar is also a very hands-on kind of company that might be more likely to sell equipment directly to a studio through a representative on a regular sales and service call than through a dealer, and educational sales are likely to work the same way, through personal contacts.
     
  17. Matus Kalisky

    Matus Kalisky Member

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    And they (mainly Nikon and Canon) have probably whole bunches of cameras that did not sell and will probably never sell.

    But if I had the choice I would take Leica M4-2 over Nikon F100 even on cloudy Sunday morning :tongue:
     
  18. henrysamson

    henrysamson Subscriber

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    I hope students get to use them. I attended RIT some years ago and if my experience with this sort of thing holds then the cameras can be checked out by faculty members for indefinite periods and the students (who could check pout 24 hours or 48 hours on weekends) will not get much of a chance to use them. There were faculty members who had 8x10 Deardorfs and lenses on permanent loan. Hopefully Leica put some conditions on their gift or RIT has put an end to some of this.