A few years ago I was phoned by a timeshare salesman. But, he wasn’t trying to sell me timeshare. No sir-ree, he was offering me something much, much better…something called “Interval Ownership.” At which point I unilaterally concluded the conversation. “Timeshare”…”Interval Ownership”…six of one, half a dozen of the other, if you ask me; a rose by any other name; etc, etc.
But just what has this to do with “leaked” photography equipment news? Well, it’s really about manipulating language in an attempt to manipulate us. “Leaked” news is more exciting than “normal” news. So rather than just putting out a mundane press release about a new camera, why not “leak” some news instead? People like to be “in the know”, to have access to “forbidden” information, and to have it before anyone else. And that, dear reader, is the simple psychology behind “leaked” stories.
I’ve written two posts before about the fake “leaks” put out by camera companies. Since then I’ve noticed a marked drop in the number of “leaked” stories about soon-to-be-available equipment. I don’t really think my articles have anything to do with the decline; I don’t have nearly enough readers or influence (yet) for that to happen.
Rather, I just think people have stopped believing these so-called leaks. The first “leaked” story may have been exciting, but the 100th one is just ho-hum. When people stop believing marketing messages they stop clicking on the links. With diminishing clicks for “leaked” stories, what’s the point of keeping the subterfuge going? Best find a new way to go about the task.
But Leica is clearly not done yet. In an attempt to squeeze every last drop from the “leaked” meme, they’ve changed the name, but not the game.
As you can read in the screen grab below, the latest info about Leica’s new T-System has not been “leaked” at all. No, that would be far too prosaic. Rather, it’s been “Prematurely Revealed”. On a “since removed” website, no less. Hectic stuff, this.
But, fortunately for us, someone with a bit of foresight – and possibly some advance notice? – was clever enough to grab all the relevant info and pics before the powers-that-be at Leica pulled the site from view (if there ever was a site in the first place). And just who are these clever chaps? Surely not the folks behind the “La Vida Leica” Facebook page!!!??? Of course, any suggestion that La Vida Leica might, in some far-off, obscure and distant way be connected with the actual Leica company, is just malicious rumour-mongering.
Actually, you can’t blame Leica for trying. But for me, even more irritating than this tired old marketing ploy, is that websites like F-Stoppers pick up on these obviously planted stories and regurgitate them as real-McCoy news. Or are F-Stoppers in on the game? In other words, have Leica paid to have this “prematurely revealed” nonsense placed on the F-Stoppers website.
Hmmm, what’s that unpleasant odour…a rat?
The preceding bit happened just yesterday, and now today we have the post below from the highly-respected British Journal of Photography (a name that never fails to conjour up images in my mind of Harris Tweed-clad photographers sporting walrus mustachios wondering around dimly-lit, cobweb-encrusted ancient halls and corridors in a Gentlemen’s Club harrumphing as they go). Anyway, full marks to the BJP for giving us the news without the hype.
So much for Prematurely Revealed. You know, it never ceases to amaze me just how dumb marketers think we are.