I'm In WatchTime Magazine

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temerityb
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I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by temerityb » Fri Aug 13, 2021 5:52 pm

And, not for holding up my wrist adorning an Omega Speedmaster while snorkeling near Pago Pago.

I wrote to WatchTime Magazine after the last issue because they did a gush piece on Teddy Baldassarre, the YouTube kid who morphed from a "watch reviewer" to a sort of AD watch seller on his own. I didn't complain about his watch knowledge or anything like that - but anyone who isn't offended by a person both selling watches and reviewing them, well, I don't even know what else to say.

You can't do that. It's a blatant conflict of interest. How can he deliver a straightforward review on, say, Oris, when he sells the brand? That cannot be done; reviews are what we used to call journalism, and if there's a profit motive involved, you're disqualified - case closed. There's no gray area here. He calls what he does "advertorials." I call bullshit.

So, I wrote a letter to complain, and, with only minor edits, they published it in the new issue that came out this week. It's obviously in the letters section. I have to give the publisher, Roger Ruegger, credit - he published something negative in a magazine that's usually all happy-happy. So props for that. He even wrote back to me explaining why they published the piece.

Ahh, standards - remember those? There are lines that shouldn't be crossed. Teddy Baldassarre reviewing watches while selling them is like running for mayor and being allowed to count the votes. It's like Elon Musk reviewing Teslas in Car And Driver. I can hear it coming: "Oh, TB, it's just about watches. Cool your jets."

It's never just about watches. YouTube is full of opportunists who read watch brand press releases, point a webcam at themselves, and you got "experts." Not in my neighborhood - besides, Archie Luxury couldn't afford the rent in my building.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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biglove (Online)
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by biglove » Fri Aug 13, 2021 8:09 pm

Good job, T-B.

Link to an online version?
"Courage is knowing it might hurt, and doing it anyway. Stupidity is the same. And that's why life is hard."-Jeremy Goldberg
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svaglic
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by svaglic » Sat Aug 14, 2021 8:38 am

That’s cool. You made a great point and they acknowledged it.
It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.
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temerityb
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by temerityb » Sat Aug 14, 2021 4:16 pm

Racer-X wrote:
Sat Aug 14, 2021 2:37 pm
Awesome. Would love to see your letter and hear Roger's explanation of why they published it.
Since Roger wrote to me in a private email, I feel it would be bad form to publish it here verbatim. But his explanation is that the magazine felt that what Teddy was doing was newsworthy. Since he's amassed a bunch of internet looks, I guess that's all it takes to be newsworthy these days. Obviously, I don't agree, and WT doesn't agree with me - but they saw the point about my point and decided to run the letter.

I am going to screen cap the letter and reprint it here. I don't think I should post the entire page, since, you know, copyrights and all that.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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biglove (Online)
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by biglove » Sat Aug 14, 2021 5:50 pm

Kudos to you, Bob. Well done!
"Courage is knowing it might hurt, and doing it anyway. Stupidity is the same. And that's why life is hard."-Jeremy Goldberg
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by thunder1 » Sun Aug 15, 2021 3:07 pm

There's only a handful of WISs that can make a similar claim..congrats!!..
Ebels are a lot like women that lack a low cut dress that zips up the side...neither get the love that they deserve...
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by Ocean » Mon Aug 16, 2021 7:19 pm

Awesome T, and I agree with you. Honestly I didn’t do any research on Teddy when I posted the other day. What I laughed was the 150k Rolex. One thing everyone needs to do is always do your own homework. I do care if it’s a ten dollar watch or 7 figures. If there’s money to be made a shill will always be there. Be the yellow Peruvian snowflake, the guy that calls himself a commander, the bowling alley knockoff or the the guy that lives in mom’s basement that wants to play luxury. This one hurts me a little because I always research before I post.
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temerityb
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by temerityb » Mon Aug 16, 2021 8:35 pm

Ocean wrote:
Mon Aug 16, 2021 7:19 pm
Awesome T, and I agree with you. Honestly I didn’t do any research on Teddy when I posted the other day. What I laughed was the 150k Rolex. One thing everyone needs to do is always do your own homework. I do care if it’s a ten dollar watch or 7 figures. If there’s money to be made a shill will always be there. Be the yellow Peruvian snowflake, the guy that calls himself a commander, the bowling alley knockoff or the the guy that lives in mom’s basement that wants to play luxury. This one hurts me a little because I always research before I post.
I don't think you did anything wrong, not at all. You watch something, you take it at face value. The difference is that I've had a jaundiced eye on Teddy for a long time. Phluff, on the blog, noted that Teddy did a YouTube video blasting home shopping network con jobs not all that long ago. I had NO problem with anything Teddy did - though I still think his actual watch knowledge is jejune, and even in the TV segment about home shopping he couldn't even name the networks that he was blasting correctly. But I never cared all that much about him until he started selling. Then, he crossed a line. "Advertorials." There is no such thing - that's a freakin' blur and SO hucksterish. And I wrote to WatchTime upset with them, too - actual watch retailers are having a really hard time of it this year, and here they were propping up another YouTube shill.

But yeah, I'm a curmudgeon that way. Teddy, that fucking annoying Jory Goodman, the whining, dubious Federico, the clown in the smoking jacket in his mother's den with his Invictas, so many others - they reel in looks and follows, make a little scratch, then try to cash in by opening storefronts. And yeah, they all turn into Mongrel and Sausage Fingers in no time flat.

All while my friend Mike, who works in a store with a real watchmaker, has to bust his ass to sell as much as a Tissot. And they actually know watches. Actual professionals, as pictured below - the repair guys, the watchmakers, the people who have devoted their lives to working in a very nebulous industry, are the the kind of "watch experts" you should learn about watches from ... not opportunists with webcams. It bugs me that folks like Mike are holding on to their jobs by their fingernails while these types are siphoning off buyers with unproven claims and who-knows-what kind of after-sales customer care.
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Maybe Teddy is an honest guy. Hopefully, he is. But again: What he's doing just plain wrong. Wanna talk about watches you sell? Go right ahead. But you can't be a faux "journalist" at the same time. But, again, standards - nobody cares any more.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by conjurer » Mon Aug 16, 2021 9:58 pm

temerityb wrote:
Mon Aug 16, 2021 8:35 pm
Maybe Teddy is an honest guy. Hopefully, he is. But again: What he's doing just plain wrong. Wanna talk about watches you sell? Go right ahead. But you can't be a faux "journalist" at the same time. But, again, standards - nobody cares any more.
Indeed. I was educated at the J-school at University of Illinois, by a bunch of old Chicago reporters who started their careers wearing their pass passes in their hatbands. Granted, I never made a lot of use from it, but they taught me how to think like a reporter, and how to write a lead, and a headline, and how to get facts straight; all of these I've used my whole life.

These interwebz influencers with their "advertorials" la-la, fuck them in their ears. There's ways of doing things, and there's ways of not doing things. If you're doing reviews, don't fucking review shit you're trying to sell. Selling's OK, that's how I make my living. But I don't go on Youtube and try to review shit I'm trying to sell.

Good for you, T. Excellent job indeed.
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temerityb
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by temerityb » Tue Aug 17, 2021 6:17 pm

conjurer wrote:
Mon Aug 16, 2021 9:58 pm
temerityb wrote:
Mon Aug 16, 2021 8:35 pm
Maybe Teddy is an honest guy. Hopefully, he is. But again: What he's doing just plain wrong. Wanna talk about watches you sell? Go right ahead. But you can't be a faux "journalist" at the same time. But, again, standards - nobody cares any more.
Indeed. I was educated at the J-school at University of Illinois, by a bunch of old Chicago reporters who started their careers wearing their pass passes in their hatbands. Granted, I never made a lot of use from it, but they taught me how to think like a reporter, and how to write a lead, and a headline, and how to get facts straight; all of these I've used my whole life.

These interwebz influencers with their "advertorials" la-la, fuck them in their ears. There's ways of doing things, and there's ways of not doing things. If you're doing reviews, don't fucking review shit you're trying to sell. Selling's OK, that's how I make my living. But I don't go on Youtube and try to review shit I'm trying to sell.

Good for you, T. Excellent job indeed.
Coming from you, conj, a true compliment.

Same here, man. I learned to write under some editors who basically beat the living crap out of me about standards, about just about the same things you learned. And you're right - the first small job I had has informed just about everything I've done since then.

But it's not even Teddy that bothers me - it's that, as a hobbyist, most people are just willing to step back and watch accepted norms erode.

I think it's why, these days, an MLB player hits a home run, and now the guy runs into the dugout and they have tea parties complete with stuffed horses and guys jumping around like toddlers seeing their first pinata. I remember Ed Kranepool caught a little flak in the 1969 World Series for having the audacity to smile as he rounded third base after a home run. Now, the players invent handshakes and dance and preen and practically butt fuck each other in raucous self-serving abandon. Over a home run in an April 5 game. With their team losing 11-3 in the seventh inning.

I have strayed from what we are communicating about, but you get the drift - these days, it's anything goes. As far as where I'm going, I'm sticking with brick and mortar, thank you very much. At least the shills there know they're shills, and you expect shilling.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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temerityb
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Re: I'm In WatchTime Magazine

Post by temerityb » Sat Aug 21, 2021 3:38 pm

Thanks, artie. I didn't even notice that WT used a pull quote in big headline type at the top of the page (the "conflict of interest" line.

I never even caught that part. That's not bad. I basically get all my magazines digitally these days, and view the whole page by pinching the type. Caught me by surprise.
“Jewelry isn’t really my thing, but I’ve always got my eye on people’s watches.” – Clive Owen
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