Perfect post. I love it.After a rather prolonged hiatus (for purely circumstantial reasons) I thought this to be as good a reason as any to resume posting to Apug. Over the years, the question of whether one company or supplier remains a going concern never failed to bring the debaters out of the woodwork.
In truth, the more pertinent aspect of Kodak's reality has far less to do with the company's ultimate future and more with the place its products hold in your (the photographer's) workflow. I remember back in the day when Agfa was teetering on the brink. The Apug forums ran amuck with predictions, speculation and in retrospect, a good deal of wishful thinking.
Rather then joining the parade, I opted to research suppliers holding whatever little remained of Agfa's prized Rodinal stock. The effort paid off and as I type this, I'm sitting on more bottles of the stuff then I could ever hope to use in a single lifetime!
Upon hearing the news of Kodak's precarious situation, almost immediately I felt the gears turning in my head. A decision needs to be made, but rather then speculating Kodak's future, this one is really very simple: How much do I love Tri-x. How many formats do I want to keep? How much can I afford to buy/store? Far simpler to contemplate then the casino royale that is Kodak's balance sheet!
To my friends and colleagues on Apug I only have this to say:
If you love the film and want to ensure its availability for your personal use, beyond speculation of buy outs and spin-offs, simply reach into your pockets and vote with your credit card!
1000 rolls of Kodak film @ around $4.00/roll on average would cost $4k. A solid quantity to have on hand and certainly well-worth ensuring the availability of this iconic medium. If the film disappears, your $4000 would probably be well invested in tangible Tri-X stock, should you ever wish to recoup your investment (and then some..)
And so, in practical terms, the matter of Kodak's continuity is actually a question of $4,000.00 or thereabouts.
Now all you have to ponder is whether that price is worth your while. If not, then I don't think you'll miss it all that much after all, even if the worst comes to pass.