" Goodness Had Nothing To Do With It "

on July 22, 2015

Thank you, Miss West. Had you never delivered another line, you would have been immortal for that one.

We are bombarded with " goodness ". It beams from every cereal box and advertisement for fringe political parties. It is sometimes a noun, sometimes and adverb, and sometimes a cudgel. When combined with the word " natural " it becomes a device of such commercial power as to compel the money from the purse of the meanest housewife.

So far, it has not penetrated into the technical world of photography, but it can only be a matter of time before it does so. We are daily being bombarded by specification and number, and when these finally fail to intrigue or intrude, the advertisers will gently sink to the level of " goodness ". It will not be a moral decision.

It happened with HiFi when that word had two capitals and the possibility of sex. We went from quoting the wattage of amplifiers ( by means of ever-increasing figures and imaginative lies ) after the numbers got to looking like the national debt and moved onto " goodness " and mysticism. We found " musicality " in twisted copper wire. Fair enough that - John Cage music sounds good when the wires are twisted, and better when they are actually pinched off.

I am not sure how I am going to sell mirror-less and DSLR cameras when mysticism sets in to our trade. I have a big glass ball at home and a set of gold earrings and I guess I could do a fair imitation of Madame Zelda who sees all if the lights are dimmed. And when they ask me about the " goodness " of the camera or lens, I know exactly what to say...

Uncle Dick