Originally Posted by copake_ham
Not only have they bet on #3, they have done so with such hatefulness and bitterness that it really is easy to tell that they also can't wait for it to happen. Someone else eluded to this earlier as well. That kind of talk has got to stop as it simply does not make any sense to carry on in that manner. To me, it is a blatant show of naivete.
As stated above, I bear Kodak no ill-feeling and hope they are a supplier of traditional photography materials for many years to come.
I'll be doing my buying from companies that have expressed support for my chosen art-form rather than the opposite. (I fully appreciate that this will make no difference in the great scheme of things whatsoever!)
The destination is important, but so is the journey
It sounds then Frank, that what you want to happen is #1.
Originally Posted by FrankB
Let us not forget that today's Ilford is a result of a re-org buy-out.
The question now becomes, how does Kodak "play out"?
2) In-house niche business
3) Run down to dead
And the sad story is that a lot of folk here seem to think that for some masochistic reason, option #3 is preferable!
I want many film companies making many types of film - that's why I won't turn my back on a major producer in some kind of a "snit". And I also do not want the niche film market to become a monopolistic one.
Yes, buy a roll of HP5 and also a roll of Neopan and also a roll of Tri-X!
Let's keep them all alive dammit!
Originally Posted by copake_ham
Well said George.
After all of the rhetoric, it is beginning to sound like an APUG clarification.
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The statement by Antonio Perez about waking up at the helm of a 'digital' company in a year's time was obviously not meant to be taken to mean that Perez sees Kodak as having no film products whatsoever by then. Such an interpretation cannot even be the literal, face-value interpretation, because there is no reason why a predominantly 'digital' company couldn't have other products too. It would also be absurd to think that Perez wants to see one-third of Kodak's revenue sources vanish within a year. The statement was probably merely meant to impress upon the fickle press the notion that Kodak is building momentum with digital products, rather than sitting on its laurels watching its traditional market shrink. Perception is almost as important as reality in the share price battles, and Kodak needs all the good press it can get.
Only the most insecure and over-sensitive reader could take great offense at the statement, but that actually describes the typical film enthusiast these days. So it's vital that Kodak proceeds on tiptoe when talking about these issues, instead of making PR blunder after blunder, to the extent that many long-suffering customers actually feel that Kodak personally dislikes them (which is also absurd, but again, perception is almost as important as reality).
Fujifilm takes a completely different approach to PR. Compare Perez's threat to the following statement:
Fujifilm is committed to providing a wide variety of films for the demanding professional photographer. The 2006 U.S. introduction of Fujichrome T64 Professional and Fujichrome Provia 400X Professional are a reflection of that commitment.
These are comforting words backed up by substance, and pretty credible substance too. Provia 400X in particular strikes me as a no-holds-barred attempt at making the best film possible. As a result, the only people who seem to dislike Fujifilm are those who are jealous of its success, and even they do not hold any real animosity in their hearts. Fujifilm is just too likeable for that. This is despite the fact that Kodak actually has more "traditional" products on the market than Fujifilm!
Kodak has made and continues to make some of the finest "traditional" products on the market, and my experience of their technical support mirrors that of Helen. Kodak has also shut down production of products with cult followings, which inevitably hurts the brand even if it is essential for the viability of the company. But the way in which Kodak has managed public relations and public expectations has been woeful beyond description. For example, not a week goes by without a new rumour about the discontinuation of Kodachrome. Why on earth are we subjected to this?! It is entirely unnecessary. If the film is to remain for another while then Kodak should tell us that officially. If a decision to pull it has been made, then we should be told that clearly and unambiguously at the earliest date. Instead we get leaked emails and "insiders" and friends of "insiders" and probably genuine insiders too, all muttering dark rumours one way or the other, with the result that PKL and KL were discontinued and resurrected at least two dozen times, with varying degrees of official consent, until they finally lost the will to spring to life, genie-like, yet again.
Perez came from Hewlett-Packard, a company in a market where heads rule and emotion plays no role (with the possible exception of Apple). No-one ever bought an HP computer because they fell in love with it. Photography is different: people have a strong emotional connection to it, and in the case of professionals and enthusiasts, this emotional connection often extends to their chosen products. Perez is a fool to be unaware of the importance of nourishing those emotions.
There are several kodak products that I like, and will continue to use as long as I can get them.
The unthinking animosity displayed towards Yellow has allot to do with typical corporate behavior inherent in any large company.
Many people like myself like Kodak products, and have first hand experience of their excellent customer service. However, at EK the right hand often doesn't know what the left hand is doing.
The rep truthfully tells you that there are no plans to discontinue a product, then somebody pulls the rug out from both of you. I think Rons two brained dinosaur analogy hits it right on the head.
There are also struggles that go on within EK. Not supporting EK products flat out undermines those within EK that make an honest living producing and promoting the best film based products in the world. For God's sakes, when has the CEO of any major company said something actually lucid?
That's just, like, my opinion, man...
Much less the "CEO" of these United States for that matter!
Originally Posted by JBrunner
I agree with this. I'm more or less new to film, but Kodak makes some excellent products for a good price. I intend to use the heck out of them. If it some point they go away, at least I had the pleasure of using them and knowing that I tried to vote for what I liked with my wallet.
Originally Posted by JBrunner
Bill, this is just plain WRONG. Kodak has a link to its press centre, which is where news articles, releases, etc., are posted. This is a common practice for corporate websites. Whether you think it is properly highlighted, whether it is the "right" way to do it or not is another question.
Originally Posted by Uncle Bill
Kodak is in a lot of markets, and is much, much larger than Ilford. While I admire Ilford as a company, am amazed at their participation in this forum, love many of their products and have used them longer than you have been an adult, making a judgment such as you have based on an incorrect statement about them not having a page for news stories ... well, I am confused.
How many of you here have taken the time to pick up the phone and talk to Kodak? There are real people, in Rochester, who answer the phone in the professional film products division. When people here were bashing Kodak because they hadn't gotten their free Portra yet, or got the wrong items (from a free offer), I simply picked up the phone and talked to a young man who was more than happy to communicate that people could call them and get any issues sorted out. I talked to a real person who supports film and communicated a very simple message: "We want people to try the film."
I am no Kodak cheerleader. While my favourite film of all time was K25, and my current choice for "best" is K64, the best b&w paper I used was Brilliant, and I use Fuji, Ilford and other products now. I mourn the passing of Agfa.
And no, their PR/marketing is not perfect. But when everyone who bitches about Kodak becomes a perfect photographer, then I'll take it more seriously.
But damn it, if people just hang on the net and bitch about things without picking up the phone to a TOLL FREE NUMBER to the very people who can deliver your message to decision makers, well then, I have no sympathy.
Maybe PE and I should get together for a coupla drinks soon.
Honey, I promise no more searching eBay for cameras.