Thursday, August 21, 2008

One day at Modern Photography in 1983...

Photo ©1983 by Robert Alexander

When Herbert Keppler passed away in January, I looked around but couldn't find this shot. It just surfaced and is still worth posting because of the story behind it. We staged this meeting at Modern Photography magazine as part as an effort to publicize the fact that we were making extraordinary efforts to clean up the mail order camera advertisers, many of whom in the early 80s were ripping off their customers with increased boldness. In the first year, we rejected over a million bucks worth of ads because the store owners wouldn't do simple things like deliver what people ordered at the advertised price. This was my first job, and I was hired by Burt Keppler (standing, in the center) to run a team of secret shoppers to help weed out the bad ads. The whole thing was Burt's idea, which is why I wanted to find this photo.

So here was the team, discussing how we would protect our readers from our unscrupulous advertisers, from left to right: yours truly (pretending to look corporate), Bob Kinney, Larry Wienstein, Burt Keppler, Rachel Segall, and Howard Shaw.

As I recall, some of us were having a bit of trouble keeping a straight face during this shoot, possibly because Howard was telling a dirty joke.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As I was growing up at this time and very interested in photography I spent many hous reading these ads and looking at all of the camera equipment that I would love to have. I eventually ordered one from one of our advertisers and they did deliver what I ordered. Thanks for your work to help the consumer.