Los Angeles, CA
Watch expert & blogger. Owner of aBlogtoWatch.com and watch editor for various important publications.
@Twinbarrel At least we aren't the only ones who feel that the "best solution" isn't totally obvious.
2 hours, 1 minute ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@SuperStrapper I feel that everyone here is someone I "speak with" on a daily basis, and we are all in this together. Why would we make major decisions without consulting the family?
2 hours, 4 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@smzenner Thanks you very much. We certainly try, and getting a fee for sales we make happen would be interesting albeit technically challenging :)
2 hours, 7 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@DennisMichael Sound, logical, and useful. Thanks for the comment.
2 hours, 9 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@bichondaddy We would love to be part of the production of such videos. Things like that would be much more what we had in mind when it came to "sponsored editorial content," versus what some people seem to fear.
I didn't know you were an artist. Where can we view some of your work?
2 hours, 12 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@Evitzee On rare occasions watch brands volunteer pricing information as part of their press documents. Most of the time we have to formally request prices since it is part of our coverage style to include them. I'd say the aBlogtoWatch team engages in no less than 1,000 extra e-mails a year just to learn the prices of the watches we are writing about.
Let me also say that major differences between the car and watch industry is cars have much more availability and thus access to writers. Cars are highly regulated and lots more information exists and is available by default. Cars are still necessities for many people and while luxury automobiles are just that, they are part of a classification of products that is still almost a transportation utility for many people.
2 hours, 14 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@AndreBraz All I have to say is thanks for the confidence. That does make me feel good :)
2 hours, 20 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@D S Vilhena Thanks for the great feedback and opinions. These are all very important things to consider. One thing that I feel is apparent from this larger discussion is that the aBlogtoWatch community is generally very concerned that the media they consume is not being honest or straight-forward with them. This likely applies to a lot of the media they follow and I think it is a great issue that as a society we face. Bottom line is that when people have a voice they want to first and foremost say "please don't lie to me or make it confusing when you are telling me an opinion or sneaking in an advertisement." As a media owner and also as a consumer I totally hear that and get that. It is something which I think about very often and I always want us to be honest with our readers even if they don't agree with us. At least we should all be on the same page when it comes to the facts.
I am also getting the idea that most people like it when there is a separation between those companies that produce media and those companies that produce the things they buy. I agree with this personally, even if I can't really articulate why.
2 hours, 21 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@Chaz_Hen Thanks for the really well-thought-out comment. It sounds like you've been part of many of our internal meetings. I agree with you on many levels. One thing I want to express is that (and I might be totally wrong) asking for donations is mostly acceptable in situations where a company or news source is a non-profit. While I am sure if aBlogtoWatch had investors they might feel that it is, this is technically a for-profit business, and I feel that asking for donations just because we try hard is not a wise decision. Though that doesn't eliminate the idea of allowing for people to suggest what they want to pay for content.
A few years ago the group Radiohead released an album totally for free online. They said people could choose to pay what they wanted for it, if anything. My understanding is that they made more money than if they sold the album via the traditional way. In a sense their tactic was a one-time thing that would be difficult to repeat, but I don't think it is patently a bad idea to allow users to suggest how much they feel something is worth. Though there would have to be something of direct value exchanged for whatever that sum is.
Also, amen to unpretentious content. I have what you might say is an "insider look" into the world of luxury media, and let me share that many of those people who produce that media, and who are intent on writing for "the 1%" aren't in any better of a position to tell people what to buy or what looks good than anyone else. We just wanna share cool stuff and explain to people what we think about it, and let people naturally come to their own conclusions about the items and services we cover.
2 hours, 28 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@franken21 Thanks for the feedback. I find it curious that you feel we don't offer negative feedback. Whether or not we do, your perception is that we don't. I think part of the issue here is that while we both really like watches our tastes are quite different in watches - that is totally healthy. Thus, you might be looking for us to comment on a fact which is apparent to you that you find negative. Perhaps the person writing the article doesn't see it as a negative, and items that they don't like you do personally find a good thing. It is possible that is what you are referring to. That is my gut instinct because I feel that we do what is possible to introduce a much opinion on both sides of something as possible.
As for the content which you feel is a regurgitation of a press release, well in a sense it it. In addition to reviews and hands-on content, we like to cover what is new in the watch industry. Many times all we have is the press release to go on, and it isn't until sometime in the future when we have an opportunity to learn more. Our tactic, like that of most sites is to introduce as much analysis as possible into covering news, and covering it in an efficient and expedient way. We try to clearly label the types of articles so that people know if it is a mere "hands-on" (where one of us only had a few minutes with a watch - say at a trade show) or a "review" (where we spend much more time personally evaluating a timepiece).
Now you've made me think about how to sound even more opinionated. I wonder if other people feel that my personal thoughts don't come through enough...
2 hours, 40 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@mgennone I recall a research methods class in college where we were taught about all the lengths social scientists went to in order to try and remove bias. Even in a clinical setting it appeared that a total removal of bias is impossible. As for media, I think it is the same. I've actually never claimed to be unbiased, but rather have been open that my bias is my own, and not a bias toward a direct commercial interest.
If people feel that personal bias in the context of opinionated blogging makes the content untrustworthy I simply say, "learn what I and the other writers like" and you'll see that we typically stick to our guns. Bias helps give personality and context to what we write, but we also try to back up feelings with facts. People can and perhaps should disagree with us, but you can't really disagree with facts.
Your final point is perhaps the most important - and that is to mix up advertisers with those that aren't just from the watch industry. It is not something we aren't working to find a solution for. It is actually more complex than you might think given issues like regional budgets and media agencies for major companies. The bottom line is that most big companies aren't that well set up to advertise online where regions and borders don't exist. aBlogtoWatch is a very international website.
2 hours, 49 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@Sam Anderson I found myself nodding my head in agreement as I read your comment. You have a good grasp on elements of current consumer behavior that I don't think everyone is as in touch with. Being the owner of a business gives me a particular viewpoint and allows me to consider things I wouldn't have ever put a lot of attention to if it did not personally effect me. The consumer mentality to want things for free isn't good or bad, but rather a function of what they have become used to. I recall a few years ago when I noticed that more and more online services started to include a paid element and at first I was pissed. "You mean you want me to pay for online storage or or to use all the features of your cool web-based image editor?!" The nerve! Slowly I began to realize that most of these small companies were offering things for free in an attempt to attract a large user base and then ultimately sell their company to a larger group.
Apparently that didn't happen enough so most companies realized that they sort of need to charge the consumer for the valuable services they offered, and I think the consumer has begun to appreciate that just because there is no tangible element to a service online, there is still value.
Perhaps that revolution isn't here yet when it comes to media versus a service. This has been explored at length above but in the future I think more people will be interested in wanting to purchase content. You can see even in this series of comments after this article people still divided over it. I don't see why asking people to pay the cost of a magazine subscription (that over the course of the year offers a lot less content) for a blog is weird.
Again, there are logistical considerations that not that many people have learned to overcome yet, but it is important to known more or less how people feel about it. I find it fascinating how many people have taken the time to bring up the concept of wanting aBlogtoWatch to be subscription-based.
2 hours, 56 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@spiceballs Sharing these types of personal opinions is really important so thank you. It is important to people to know what we aren't thinking about increasing advertising density on each page, nor would there be increasingly confusing instances of whether something is advertising material or not.
3 hours, 3 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@guydd Thanks for the input. You are correct that like all things financial it is important to diversify and not put your all your expectations behind just one approach. In regard to the matter of a subscription fee that is an approach that I think would make a lot of sense but I personally don't feel we are at a point where it is technologically simple enough. Not only from the standpoint of the actual transactional element, but also from the standpoint of properly and efficiently segmenting paid from unpaid content, and all the related things. Tools exist, but they are highly customized solutions and have the potential of alienating a lot of people.
What makes more sense is to contemplate those things where we can add value or produce extra content that may live outside of the traditional blog space that certain audience members would really like to purchase. I think it is responsible to continually look at what is available and follow market habits, just like you brought up.
3 hours, 5 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@WimadS @aBlogtoWatch @leops1984 Sure, that is a good point and technically there is potential for that to exist. I suppose it would be more of a concern with Sponsored Posts and alike versus traditional banner advertising. The goal for us is curate both content and ads, which we do, and will continue to do to ensure things make sense for the community.
18 hours, 39 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@5803822 @aBlogtoWatch @HAB Ha! Thanks. I would love to claim that I've developed a way to personally cash in enough to afford all the lovely timepieces on my list. Alas, there are too many bills for that. If there is anything that watch lovers learn while working in the watch media industry... it is that watches are luxuries that come after everything else.
19 hours, 14 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@leops1984 I used to term "transparency" a lot in the article and have noticed that most of the commentors have also raised the issue. I take that as reinforcement that the community really values knowing what it is reading/watching, and who stands to benefit from it. In an industry when the advertisers exist among the pool of subjects we cover in our content lines can appear blurred I am sure. In any event, it doesn't really benefit anyone if we have content that a company paid for and we don't label it as such. My experience is that consumers not only feel that media outlets are deceptive when content isn't clearly labeled, but advertisers also experience a tarnished reputation when their name or products are involved. In my opinion it goes back to the concept of "is your product really not good enough to stand on its own and you need to pay for positivity?" Paying for awareness is one thing, but at the end of the day a product's merits, price, and design should ultimately sway consumers.
Moreover, I think that is a good rule-of-thumb for measuring the ethics of advertising: it is OK to pay for awareness, but when you pay for opinion you've crossed the line. My personal philosophy is that advertising on aBlogtoWatch should have the relatively benign purpose of sharing a brand's message with an interested audience that wouldn't fall within our normal editorial coverage or sits as a companion next to, and not in it.
19 hours, 20 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@5803822 Interesting that you bring up the length of time we have watches to test before we review them. The periods actually range wildly from a few days to well over a year. Sometimes we sit on something before writing a review, other times we know exactly what we want to say from a relatively short period with the watch. It just all really depends.
Your input is noted and appreciated. I understand that it may appear as though we are gauging feedback in anticipation of doing something specific but that isn't the case exactly. While there are a few things we are working on it isn't clear what will materialize or when. This is really just a conversation I wanted to have with the audience and felt that right now was a good time.
19 hours, 31 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@5803822 @HAB When a viable opportunity to own a Gefica presents itself and I personally have the resources to acquire one, it is certainly on the list. I still love those, just one of the many relatively obscure and watches I persoanlly find myself thinking about even years after I've first discovered them.
19 hours, 37 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@5803822 @Ulysses31 I think you just made our bookkeeper's head spin. You are the first person we will contact when we decide to go public, and offering that type of information to shareholders becomes necessary. I think it is great that even some people in the audience is interesting in this information. I guess the concern/curiosity is who may have influence over the aBlogtoWatch content. Which is interesting given that we've always felt facts about watches and pictures speak for themselves more so than our praise or personal approval.
19 hours, 40 minutes ago on Your Feedback Is Requested In Regard To The Future Of Watch Media
@MarkCarson @Jus_ad_bellum The watch passion is heating up. At least we are all here for the same reason. With our various insights and understanding of the facts we work together to uncover "truths" right? I think it is good when people share their observations and of course we feel inclined to assert our positions. I am just happy people are sharing.
In regard the NOS Aquadive. We actually have one and wanted to review it. Communication broke down with the Aquadive - meaning they simply never responded to us so we were unable to complete the review. I'd like to of course try and complete it someday soon.
1 week ago on MKII Paradive Watch Review
@Ivan1998 Thank you for the comment. Yes, there are even older examples of peripheral rotors. This article did not claim when such rotors came about or by whom, but merely that they are still uncommon - which is true.
1 week ago on Ellicott Majesty Watches Hands-On
@Ayreonaut It is Italian though...
1 week, 2 days ago on Speedometer Official Unidirectional Bezel Bracelet
@MikeinFrankfurt @MarkCarson I agree but sometimes I like to rock a watch and matching tiara. To each their own right? I think the way people wear their watches is interesting. It can be novel to see someone sporting all sorts of bracelets and quasi-jewelry, and some people pull it off really well. But don't feel weird if you rock just your watch without accessorizing.
@emenezes a Wrist to Watch?
@Robertus Thanks so much for taking the time to elaborate on the extra points Robert.
1 week, 4 days ago on Recommended Use: Understanding The Durability Of Your Mechanical Watch And When To Take It Off
@DG Cayse Thanks. This certainly was an older piece. Glad I wrote it when I did.
1 week, 6 days ago on The Art Of Selling Luxury Watches To That Rich Wealthy Crowd; Five Tricks Of The Trade!
@SuperStrapper Like is you said this is due to the fact that it is nearing midnight and the date is about to change. In my experience this isn't THAT early for it so start moving. I suppose it is a more complex feat to have the date system on an independent gearing set. Not a bit deal really.
1 week, 6 days ago on Bulova Accutron II Surveyor With Precisionist Movement Watch Review
@Public123 @aBlogtoWatch @RipJJ Thank you for all the useful input and expanding on the topic. This is exactly what I hoped the community would provide given that this is (like many things related to little machines) quite complicated.
It was not my intent to make claims about materials science etc... Not only because I not educated as a scientist but also because the science related to each specific watch and age of watch is different. The best we can do is make statements and advice based on our experience and knowledge that are generally useful and considered best practices. There are always going to be exceptions, but unless we know of an entire category of watches that will do just fine under repeated exposure to hot water, it is a safe bet to simply advise people to avoid it unless they have specific knowledge that their watches are designed to withstand that type of exposure. Individual watch retailers have the responsibility to specifically indicate what their watches can and cannot do. My goal was to offer some generally useful advice and suggestions where the industry as a whole has for the most part offered little information.
2 weeks ago on Recommended Use: Understanding The Durability Of Your Mechanical Watch And When To Take It Off
@RipJJ I think you more or less answered your own good question - and that is it is generally a poor idea to wear watches in heated water because of not only the production of possible condensation, but also that the gaskets and seals aren't designed to handle being "cooked." This is one of the reasons that watches are not a good idea to take into the shower or a bath. They might do well for a while, but the heat will age some of the parts much faster. So even if the metal and crystal are unscathed, some of the smaller elements you don't notice can be poorly affected.
@trj66 Thanks. It felt important to write.
2 weeks, 4 days ago on RIP Robin Williams, Watch Guy
@trj66 @aBlogtoWatch Always friends. My feeling is that when a reader takes the time to comment it is because something is very important to them and it is worth discussion whether that thing is good or a concern. You felt concerned and you raised your voice - that is natural and I hope people know that is a welcome practice here. I suppose something that is an issue - which I see from time to time - is people jumping to conclusions about why something is the way it is. Here in the US we have a saying that goes "assumption is the mother of all fuck ups." I think the point is often times jump to causality before they have asked all the right questions. At aBlogtoWatch we hope not only to offer good answers but that people feel comfortable to raise questions. If we are doing something that we personally might want to reconsider, we sure hope our little system of checks and balances puts it right.
3 weeks, 3 days ago on Everest Leather Straps For Rolex Watches Preview
@DangerussArt Yea, this is some seriously good stuff. Few watches make me think "yup, that is totally worth the new Audi car cash."
3 weeks, 4 days ago on Hajime Asaoka Project T Tourbillon Indepedent Japanese Watch
@trj66 It really isn't an ad, at least we didn't get paid. The person who wrote it has worked with the company before and enjoys their products. We know that people like "Rolex accessories" and we haven't seen something like this in the past. Everest Bands is among the few companies doing aftermarket Rolex straps that are nice so we felt OK with it. I think it is however important that the community stay cautious and understand the difference between advertising and editorial. This is simply from a different voice than our own because we didn't have the hands-on experience with the straps. Thanks again for the comment.
3 weeks, 5 days ago on Everest Leather Straps For Rolex Watches Preview
@MarkCarson @aBlogtoWatch I don't think the phrase "optimal slime" gets used enough around here.
3 weeks, 5 days ago on Rolex Deepsea Sea-Dweller D-Blue Dial Watch Is Tribute To James Cameron Deepsea Challenge 3D Movie
@DonQ You are correct. Was something else mentioned? The Deepsea Challenge was on the outside of the vessel (known as the Deepsea Challenger) and on his wrist was the Deepsea (gets confusing right?).
@marbstiu @MarkCarson @Chaz_Hen Sadly it won't be that simple. A four hour meeting about whether it fits into a black or blue round-up will ensue. With camps divided on both sides as well as the more diplomatic "black and blue" camp which unfortunately cannot tie into a currently authorized black and blue fashion trend. The entire team shelves the idea for "celebrity black eye" month, yes no one knows what to make of the tiny splash of green...
3 weeks, 6 days ago on Rolex Deepsea Sea-Dweller D-Blue Dial Watch Is Tribute To James Cameron Deepsea Challenge 3D Movie
@sazzy Thanks for the note. This article isn't an advertisement. As someone interested in metal coatings, especially those in colors I felt this was an important story to tell. Rau-Tech decided to use Rolex watches to show off what they can do, the designs of which are of course a matter of taste. What is more interesting to me is the technology. I spoke with the company a bit about the processes and it sounds very interesting. We don't have any evidence to suggest that the watches are anything but authentic, but if you are concerned by all means contact the company. Like I said, we felt these were fun pictures to share and the coating process was the most interesting for us to discuss.
3 weeks, 6 days ago on Finally! Colorful Coatings For Most Metals: Rau-Tech Custom Rolex And Other Watches
@somethingnottaken @aBlogtoWatch @Ivan1998 Yes, this is of course an important consideration. Again, the entire team has discussed this at length and we attempt to make careful decisions in the interest of our readers at all time. Of course each message can have multiple interpreted meanings but in the situation you are referring to it was important to clarify our position in regard to the brand without waiting for a resolution that may never occur. It isn't a particularly enjoyable thing to have to tell our important audience something, but not everything.
1 month ago on The Real Story Behind The Bremont Wright Flyer In-House Made BWC/01 “London” Watch Movement
@Ivan1998 @aBlogtoWatch I totally agree with you. It is a shame what happened. Makes us all very sad.
@Ivan1998 Well those are two very different situations, but I appreciate that it might appear we are "choosing" who to be easy on. In the case of Bremont we have been very straight forward in our assertion that they made a mistake, and that all they needed to do was be honest from the beginning. Together with the community places like aBlogtoWatch have made it clear to Bremont that something needs to change.
@TomasinaCovell That's our Kenny! Good piece.
@gyang333 I actually did write a lot of it. David and I worked on it together.
@mark93109 Thanks for the comment. We did not choose to post the "update" lightly. It was a decision we needed to do based on a multitude of factors that we will explain shortly. We appreciate that this might appear unfair, but we will explain as best we can and I assure you that this is merited by the situation. We take this quite seriously and our motivation is always to provide pertinent information for consumers.
1 month ago on Hands-On With Some RGM Caliber 801 American Made Watches
@In Da House The irony of course is that the Arnold & Son article which published around same time whch contained the similar movement was totally a coincidence as it was scheduled to post long before we even wrote the article about the Wright Flyer!
@gojiB On top of all that there is the serious matter of "in-house" made and how you define that. The term is way too loose and I think it needs to be properly defined.
@DavidJGreenspun @aBlogtoWatch A few years ago I wrote about the Dubois-Depraz manufacture that produces modules, and is generally held with a lot of confidence. I mentioned some of the brands that they produce parts for and added that the Swiss watch industry as a whole should be proud of all the great companies that work together like a sort of extended family. In fact the industry at large was founded on a lot of companies working together to produce a final product, not everyone producing all the parts.
I am not sure when it was but at some point brands began to market the "total independence" of manufacturing. At least one company threaten to sue Dubois-Depraz if they did not force me to remove mention of their name from the article which I wrote here on aBlogtoWatch - simply indicating something true that no one should be shy about.
I am a fan of painting the Swiss watch industry as just that, a connected industry of high-quality suppliers that contribute to the larger concept of "Swiss Made." Unfortunately a lot of brands continue to disagree and feel that they are better off claiming all the laurels of "novelty" for themselves. We will continue to praise the industry overall and make it clear when we have enough information about the many small companies that help put together the industry overall.
@Chronic It is true that we wanted to get this up quickly because we felt it was important to the community. The post was written by David and myself so the mixture of styles is perhaps what you are seeing. When we have a bit more time to focus on content - as we normally do - we often have a more extensive editing process. Thank you for keeping us on our editorial toes.
@d4nimal On behalf of the team I apologize if you feel that we are doing a disservice to anyone - our goal is quite the contrary. Part of what we try to do is consult with the industry on how do to, and how not to do things. We've discussed the situation with Bremont and advised them on how to best remedy a situation which can cast doubt on their integrity. Of course it is up to them to make a decision on how to react. My opinion is that Bremont should release a totally new press release document focused on just the movement. I further believe that Bremont is currently considering how to better describe the BWC/01 movement but given that they are a company they aren't like to just go on their website and change words around as discussions need to be had.
I think this served as a sort of wake-up call to them in regard to how seriously the community takes each word a brand that many people like say.
In our coverage we have mentioned the bad (without holding back) and also mentioned the positives. The funny thing is that Bremont is upset that we even discussed it, and some of our audience is upset that we didn't lash out more. So that puts us in the middle between two parties who aren't super happy and when you take the middle road it is often the fact that it is still going to look like you are not taking a firm position.
So when readers feel like we are "doing a disservice" by all means please inform us of it and we will do our best to refine our message or meaning.
@TomasinaCovell It is funny that you mention that because when we initially read the press release we thought it was odd that mention of the BWC/01 movement was at the end. I agree that the Wright Flyer didn't need more than the Wright Brothers connection and the integration of the new movement should have just focused on the in-house made parts. I am frankly starting to get a little irritated by "in-house" and all the various definitions people apply to it.