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Sunday, January 20, 2008

ScanMyPhotos.com "In the News" - Recap; Historical Overview

Write up in Popular Photography, Page 13, May 2008

A lifetime of photos on a single disc - The Wall Street Journal

Two-Minutes to Prepare 10,000 Photos for Scanning With Kodak Technology at ScanMyPhotos.com - Yahoo! News

Did you know: The average household has more than 10,000 photos in shoeboxes, spanning generations that need to be digitized, but how?


Irvine, CA (PRWEB) April 4, 2008 -- Free shipping and scanning 10,000 photographs for $495.00 with same day turnaround is the next "new-new thing" in digital imaging, according to the Photo Preservation Center , which says "many households collectively have more than 10,000 analogy photo snapshots stored away in shoeboxes."
The problem was how to safely and affordably have an entire family's generations of pictures scanned and mailed back the same day? To help promote photo scanning and solve the challenge, today, the
Photo Preservation Center is launching The Great American Photo Scanning Project. Its goal is to scan millions of pictures through local photo retailers which are networked through directories on two leading photo imaging associations and through the nationwide ScanMyPhotos.com service for high-volume scanning. (See http://www.PhotoPreservation.org).
ScanMyPhotos.com, which commercialized super-fast photo scanning and provides a menu of other digital imaging services is hosting an upgraded program for
The Great American Photo Scanning Project. With a few clicks on the keyboard, in under two-minutes, consumers start the process to have 10,000 of their photos scanned when they order the Family Generations Collection prepaid boxes. Afterwards, they design their own photo albums from their scanned photo memories.

"The Kodak scanning and software technology that powers ScanMyPhotos.com provides for safe, fast, affordable and reliable service. Now, it's as fast as a few clicks on the ScanMyPhotos.com website to order either a single or multiple prepaid fill-the-box service," said Mitch Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com and chairman of the Photo Preservation Center.

Then, just like the celebrated Kodak slogan, "You Press the Button We Do the Rest," the newest service includes safely sending out six co-branded U.S. Postal Service Priority Mail prepaid boxes. Combined, it supports more than 10,000 standard photographs that consumers pack up and drop off at their local Post Office. ScanMyPhotos.com does the rest with same day scanning and return. Their Family Generation Collection includes two complimentary custom photo memory albums designed using ScanMyPhotos.com's online digital imaging service.


The ScanMyPhotos.com Family Generation Collection includes:

Pay just $495.00 for six prepaid boxes that combined hold 10,000 standard photo snapshots,
Same day fulfillment, scanning and return of the completed DVDs and original photos,
All Shipping and handling included,
One set of DVD data discs that archives each (300 dpi) jpeg image,
Two Photo Memory Albums that the customer designs, chooses the photos, journals with custom text and adds their selected backgrounds and templates to personalize each hardcover bound album using the ScanMyPhotos.com online photo imaging service.

ScanMyPhotos.com is famous for its digital imaging and nationwide fill-the-box scanning, but was faced with a challenge to expand the service after its involvement with the recent
2008 Artistry of Genealogy Awards. According to Goldstone, "the genesis for the expanded 10,000 prepaid photo scanning service was based on many family historians asking for even larger packages to ship their photos in. They liked the flat-fee and same day service, but wanted something more."

More info, see ScanMyPhotos.com. For daily news and super-savings updates, visit their blog:
Tales from the World of Photo Scanning (http://www.Blog.ScanMyPhotos.com). The Photo Preservation Center is sponsored by ScanMyPhotos.com

ScanMyPhotos.com sponsors "Great American Photo Scanning Project," announces Artistry of Genealogy Award website winners

ScanMyPhotos.com, Irvine, Calif., is participating in the
Photo Preservation Center's "Great American Photo Scanning Project," beginning today. Created by the Photo Preservation Center, an educational division of ScanMyPhotos.com, and sponsored by ScanMyPhotos.com, "The Great American Photo Scanning Project" aims to promote scanning services and inspire people to have their shoeboxes of analog photo snapshots digitally scanned.Throughout April, ScanMyPhotos.com is providing up to 1,000 free photo scans to members of Flickr, MySpace, Blogger or Facebook, they will get up to 1,000 4-by-6-inch photos scanned to DVD, only paying $19.95 for return shipping and handling.The Photo Preservation Center features a national network of service providers, as well as links to photo scanning service providers who are current members of PMA, and a local listing of photo scanning service providers who are current members of the Independent Photo Imagers.In related news, the Photo Preservation Center announced the 2008 Artistry of Genealogy Awards (AGA), sponsored by ScanMyPhotos.com, which aims to help consumers preserve and record family history through genealogy. The categories and genealogy website winners during a telephone survey of 945 ScanMyPhotos.com customers across the nation during Jan. 12-March 24, who identified their favorite websites for the several categories. A list of categories and website winners is available on the AGA awards website.


2008 Artistry of Genealogy Awards Announced by the Photo Preservation Center - Yahoo! Fianance

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Preserving family history through genealogy is an art with millions of stories to share. The
2008 Artistry of Genealogy Awards (AGA) were announced today by The Photo Preservation Center (PPC) to showcase outstanding genealogy websites and recognize excellence in preserving family history through genealogy. The categories and winners were selected by families across the nation who had their photo memories digitally preserved by ScanMyPhotos.com as part of the process of recording and studying the ancestry of family trees.

An overview of the AGAs is available at PhotoPreservation.org. Comprehensive information on each category and award recipient is detailed at “Tales from the World of Photo Scanning” (Blog.ScanMyPhotos.com).
"The 2008 Artistry of Genealogy Awards coincides with April’s ‘The Great American Photo Scanning Month’ to encourage having the 3.5 trillion analog photo snapshots digitally preserved," said Mitch Goldstone, Chairman of The Photo Preservation Center and president & CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com, AGA’s sponsor.
“As generations of family photos begin to fade away, 'The Great American Photo Scanning Month' promises to inspire people to have their photos digitally scanned," said Goldstone. Throughout April, ScanMyPhotos.com is providing 1000 free photo scans to members of four leading social networking sites. Along with all members of each website recognized by the AGAs, Flickr, MySpace, Blogger and Facebook members can have up to 1,000 4x6" photos scanned to DVD without charge when they mail their pictures to ScanMyPhotos.com and pay $19.95 for return S&H and include the downloadable order form.


2008 Artistry of Genealogy Award Winners:
* Best Ongoing Family History Story: Creative Gene: Genealogy and More.
creativegene.blogspot.com* Best Genealogy Reference Tool: Family Tree Magazine Blog - Genealogy Insider, edited by Diane Haddad. www.familytreemagazine.com/insider* Best Genealogy Portal: Cyndi’s List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet. http://www.cyndislist.com/* Best Way to Reunite Unidentified Photos: Dead Fred Genealogy Photo Archive. http://www.deadfred.com/* Best Family Immigration Story Site: Tell Us Your Story - The Ellis Island Immigration Museum. http://www.ellisisland.org/* Best Way to Network on The Internet with Your Family: The Generations Network Inc’s MyFamily.com. http://www.myfamily.com/* Best Archive of Historical Records: The Generations Network Inc’s Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com/* Best Value/Free Genealogy Software Application: Geni.com. http://www.geni.com/* Most Popular Genealogy Publication: Family Free Magazine. http://www.familytreemagazine.com/* Favorite Genealogy Research Guide: Genealogy Research Guides, Tips and Online Records. http://www.researchguides.net/* Best Personal Genealogy Blog: AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors. http://www.ancestories1.blogspot.com/* Easiest Way to Share Family Stories Online: One Great Family. http://www.onegreatfamily.com/* Most Popular Genealogy Data Base - Family Tree Connection. http://www.familytreeconnection.com/* Best Personal Geology Blog - Renee Zamora, Renee's Genealogy Blog. http://www.rzamor1.blogspot.com/* Best Daily Genealogy Newsletter - Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter. http://www.eogn.com/

Photo Preservation Center (PPC) was established by ScanMyPhotos.com as the principal resource for information on scanning digital images and preserving generations of analog photo memories. Its mission is to promote and foster the dissemination of information and host a resource center for discussing issues pertaining to the preservation of family pictures. PPC is designed to enhance awareness for converting analog pictures into digital images and promote new products available for consumers to view, save and share their photo memories. ScanMyPhotos.com is a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc., founded in 1990 as a retail and nationwide digital imaging Ecommerce business. ScanMyPhotos.com has digitally scanned more than 6-million photographic images.

Digital technology preserves movies, photos, music - St. Petersburg Times

Local search success at photo site - B2B Marketing

By Carol KrolStory posted: March 12, 2008 - 11:56 am EDT


It took a crisis for ScanMyPhotos.com to discover the power of local search advertising.

The Irvine, Calif.-based photo scanning and finishing company was a faithful Yellow Pages advertiser for 1
7 years. The company ran prominent ads in the Orange County Yellow Pages, and those ads made the phone ring.
“Each year I do the biggest, boldest ads,” said Mitch Goldstone, president-CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com. “We were the biggest and best ad in our category for much of Orange County.”

Last August, as soon as the directory was published, Goldstone leafed through the pages to see his ad. But it wasn’t there. The Yellow Pages had inadvertently left the ad out.

“We saw a significant drop-off in calls,” Goldstone said, adding that without the ad, “it looked like I was out of business” to both customers and competitors.

Needing an instant solution, Goldstone turned to local search online. While ScanMyPhotos.com had dabbled in search marketing, testing keyword buys on the major engines last year, it had neither an online or search strategy to speak of.

As a stopgap measure, Goldstone turned to Local.com, an online search engine that can target a business’ message to local customers conducting online searches.

“I was familiar with Local.com because they are based in my city,” Goldstone said.

In early November, Goldstone placed his first Local.com ad and said that within a couple of weeks, the phone started ringing and hasn’t stopped.

ScanMyPhotos.com is using Local.com’s Local Promote advertising program, which guarantees its customer’s listing will appear at the top of the search results page in a specified category and region.
Goldstone said that the best part is he is spending about half of what he had been on Yellow Pages ads. Despite that reduced budget, the effort is producing more qualified leads.
“We used to get three or four calls a day on average [that came from the Yellow Pages ad],” Goldstone said. “Now, we get eight calls a day on average and 10 calls a day during the holidays.”
As a bonus, Goldstone said that the customers that come through the Internet “seem to be more qualified.”
So Goldstone is saying farewell to Yellow Pages advertising.
“I thought it was a stopgap measure to run until next August and then redo my Yellow Pages ad, but we’re not doing that anymore,” he said. “There’s no need to do that.”
His only regret? That he didn’t discover Local.com sooner.

Free Photo Scanning for Facebook®, MySpace®, Blogger® and Flickr® Members From ScanMyPhotos.com

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--It’s a wrap. During the walkout, members of the Writers Guild of America received free photo scanning from ScanMyPhotos.com as part of the business communities’ support for their efforts. Now, the super-fast nationwide photo scanning service is redirecting its free campaign to a much larger group - members of four leading social networking sites.
If you subscribe to Facebook, MySpace, Blogger or Flickr, a problem is there are 3.5 trillion treasured analog photo snapshots stashed in shoeboxes. “These generations of charmed photo memories need to be digitized and shared too,” advised Mitch Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com.
“We selected Facebook, MySpace, Blogger and Flickr social networking members to receive this $49.95 value because they represent the most cutting-edge and innovative group of consumers. In exchange, we ask people to post reviews on their experience with our scanning and digital imaging photo center,” said Goldstone.
HOW TO GET YOUR PHOTOS SCANNED FOR FREE
1) Free scanning applies only to current members of Facebook, MySpace, Blogger and Flickr to scan up to 1,000 4x6" non-copyrighted photo snapshots, plus pay standard shipping and handing fee of $19.95. Additional paid services are available, including custom photo albums, photo enhancements and extra DVDs.
2) Valid only for direct mail customers in the U.S. Limited to one complimentary scanning service per person / address. Cannot be combined with other orders. Expires on February 29, 2008.
3)
Click here for complete packing instructions.
4) Photographs must comply with ordering requirements and be loose, out of envelopes and albums.
5) Access ScanMyPhotos.com 24/7 Live Support help desk anytime.
6) See blog for more info:
Tales from the World of Photo Scanning.
7) Click here to download
order form.
8) And, a favor: afterwards, please post a review about your experience with ScanMyPhotos.com
ScanMyPhotos.com pioneered a new way to affordably and quickly digitize millions of analog pictures by commercializing KODAK’s document imaging scanners.
Website: ScanMyPhotos.com.
Blog: Tales from the World of Photo Scanning.
Background: PhotoPreservation.org: the Voice of Photo Scanning.

Photo Books Hit a Home Run for Holiday Gift-Giving - Market Watch

Lucidiom EQ Data Shows One-Hour Photo Books Hit a Home Run for Holiday Gift-GivingRetailers Made More than 80,000 Photo Books through Lucidiom EQ-9800 for the Holidays
VIENNA, Va., Jan 07, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Lucidiom announced that consumers have made 80,000 one-hour photo books on the EQ-9800 during November and December 2007 through Lucidiom's nationwide network of photofinishing retailers, with some of its retail clients calling the photo book the winning product for this past holiday season.
"The photo industry has been praising photo books for more than a year as the hot holiday product, however, most photo retailers must send their photo books out to a central lab for creation, and the turn-around often takes about two weeks," said Lucidiom President Stephen Giordano Jr. "While some vendors already have in-store systems in small regional retail locations, Lucidiom is the only vendor that has provided retailers coast-to-coast with a one-hour photo book solution in just about 1000 locations."Launched at PMA '07 in March, Lucidiom's EQ not only offers software to create book pages, but the printer, paper, book-binding equipment to create one-hour photo books as well as a host of other classic gifts and cards - from bound calendars, flip books, folded cards and custom envelopes to scrapbook pages, DVDs, posters and bordered prints. With equipment, software, and production support all bundled together in one cohesive package, EQ contains everything photofinishing retailers need to produce any product involving their customers' photos.
"In fact, while one-hour photo books gave retailers a new hit product this past holiday season, even more bound calendars and folded greeting cards - all done within an hour on the EQ-9800 - were made by photofinishing retailers," adds Giordano. "More than 100,000 one-hour bound calendars and more than one million one-hour folded greeting cards were printed in November and December 2007. The EQ-9800 gave retailers three top sellers for the holidays."
"Photo books and flip books were some of our hottest sellers this holiday season," said Mitch Goldstone, co-owner of 30 Minute Photos Etc. and ScanMyPhotos.com in Irvine, Calif. "The Lucidiom system is full of exclusive designs that make it easy for consumers to drop in their photos and customize their books to their own personal style."
Some of Lucidiom's retailers took the photo book in regards to gift-giving one step further. For example, Avon Moto Photo purchased special packaging boxes with tissue paper for the books, so customers only had to wrap the box to have a finished gift. "We built a new kiosk bar area earlier this year, and traffic steadily has increased as consumers use the kiosks to make photo books and other creative photo products," said Joel Miller, owner of Avon Moto Photo in Avon, Conn.
At PMA '08, Lucidiom will improve upon its photo books even further, by offering full-bleed books to create borderless photo books.The photo and retailing industries can view EQ's capabilities at Lucidiom's booth at two tradeshows this month: the 2008 International CES, January 7-10, and PMA 08, January 31-February 2. Both shows are in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Tips for keeping your house in order - Mercury News

Tips for keeping your house in orderHOW TO ORGANIZE YOUR HOUSE AND PECK AWAY AT THE TO-DO LIST
By Judy StarkSt. Petersburg (Fla.) TimesArticle Launched: 01/05/2008 01:39:27 AM PST
It's the time of year when we all think about what we should be doing around the house.
Everyone's time is valuable, so here are some things you can do in 15 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour. We also list the bare-minimum chores for those who are living on their own for the first time or those who are truly time-pressed.
Add your own items to this checklist, and work at them as the months go by. You can end 2008 with a home that's cleaner, brighter and better organized than when the year began. That will be worth celebrating!
IN 15 MINUTES YOU CAN . . .
• Flip the mattress.
• Dust the fan blades.
• Wipe fingerprints off doors and door frames (use a damp cloth and a spray cleaner; if you've got serious grime, try a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser).
• Go through the linen closet and pick out the worn but still usable towels and washcloths. If they're still in pretty decent shape, a shelter may welcome them. If they're on the ragged side, animal shelters, pet boutiques and vets may be glad to have them for bathing animals.
• Clean out one drawer.
• Clean the top of the refrigerator.
• Dust that hard-to-reach shelf.
• Clean out ceiling light fixtures. Dump the dead insect bodies and wash and dry the fixtures.
IN 30 MINUTES YOU CAN . . .
• Roll out the refrigerator, vacuum theAdvertisementcoils and clean the floor under it.
• Roll out the stove and clean beside, behind and under it. (You'll be amazed.)
• Get a battery checker and test the batteries in all of your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, flashlights and other battery-powered devices. If they're still good, good. If not, replace them.
• Make a dent in that ugly chore you keep avoiding: cleaning the mold and mildew in the shower stall; cleaning and lubricating the rollers on sliding doors; scrubbing and resealing grout in tile floors.
IN AN HOUR YOU CAN . . .
• Sweep the garage.
• Wash the car, or take it to the car wash.
• Clean out and reorganize your overloaded computer files (wear out that "delete" button). At the end of an hour, stop. You can come back another time and do more.
• Walk through the house and gather up all the magazines and catalogs. Decide which to throw, which to pass on (to friends, nursing homes, doctor's office, hair salon), which you're going to read. Pick up some magazine organizers at the big-box office-supply stores to keep them sorted. Cancel subscriptions to magazines you no longer read.
INVENTORY TIME
• Review the cleaning supplies you have (which are probably under the kitchen sink, in the garage, in the laundry room and in the bathroom). Set aside those you don't use. Replace what you're about to run out of. If you've got three partial bottles of glass cleaner and four bottles of countertop spray, commit to using them up before you buy more. If you're constantly running out of something (dishwasher detergent, for example), stockpile a year's supply.
• Do the same thing for other household staples: coffee filters, napkins, toothpaste, first-aid supplies, stationery items, stamps.
WORK ON A PHOTO FINISH
• Get out those shoe boxes full of photos. Spend an hour identifying them, throwing out duplicates and bad shots.
• Put those images on CDs so you can share them, e-mail them, make cards, calendars, etc. One such source: www.scanmyphotos.com . You pay $100 for a prepaid box into which you stuff as many photos as you can. They scan them onto a CD for you and return the photos.
• Are there photos you've been promising to share? Take them to a photo store or the photo department at your local drugstore, discount store or grocery, and have the prints made. (This costs as little as 15 cents a print.) Or, if you've got the photos online, spend an hour e-mailing them to the recipients.
IN THE CAR
• Clean it out. Get rid of the trash, juice boxes, fast-food wrappers. Clean out the glove box.
• If your maps are more than two years old, replace them.
• Put together an emergency kit in a box or canvas bag: flashlight, flares, flat-fixer, change and a few small bills, pen, pad, a couple of envelopes, first-aid items, hand sanitizer or wipes, roll of paper towels.
• Replace worn wiper blades.
• Look at stores that sell organizing supplies, auto parts and office supplies for organizers that can keep papers, files, samples, sports gear and whatever else you're hauling around in place and out of your way.
• When was the last time you checked the oil and topped up the window-washer fluid?
• Get new floor mats, a license plate frame and a good cup holder.
SORT, SHARPEN, SPRUCE UP
• Sort through the videos/DVDs (or have those who watch them do this). Get rid of the ones no one watches any longer.
• Write on. Throw out pencil stubs and the pens that no longer write. If your pencil jar is jammed full, pull some out and give them away (shelters, senior centers, or your church might be glad to have them).
• Where would it be useful to have a hook, a screw or a nail to hang something up? In the garage, the back hall, the front closet, a child's room? Get out a hammer or a drill-driver and solve this problem now.
• Where do you need a duplicate: another pair of scissors, a ruler, a screwdriver, a set of measuring spoons? Get them and end those constant trips to the other end of the house.
• Do you know where your fire extinguisher is? Do you have a fire extinguisher? Do you know how to use it? Do what you need to do so you can answer "yes" to all these questions.
AROUND THE HOUSE
• Hose down the front of the house to get rid of spiderwebs, mud daubers, dead insects and general dust and grime. Clean out the porch light fixture and make sure the light works. Replace the welcome mat. If the flowers are dead, leggy or otherwise spent, replace them. Polish the door knocker and the brass numerals; replace the numbers if necessary.
• Is your bathroom sink draining slowly? Remove the pop-up stopper and clean away the hair and gunk that has accumulated on it. If this doesn't solve your problem, you may need a plunger, a snake, a chemical drain cleaner or the baking soda-vinegar-boiling water trick.
• Wash the windows. OK, wash one window, or the windows in one room. Work your way through the house over the next few weeks.
• Do you know how your house works? Learn how to shut off the power, gas and water for the entire house and how to shut off the water at each sink. Label the breakers in your electrical box.
• Learn how to unplug your garage door from its electrical source and how to lock it, and know how to open the door manually when the power is out.
• What if you locked yourself out of your house? Give a key to a neighbor; keep another at work (unlabeled, please).
ABOUT THE KIDS
• Weed out the clothes they've outgrown or won't wear and pass them on to another child.
• Ditto with the toys, games and books they've outgrown or lost interest in.
• Provide open clothes hampers and open baskets or boxes for toy storage. Kids won't lift lids.
AT THE BARE MINIMUM
For the time-strangled among you, here's the bare minimum to ward off a health department citation and keep your mother happy:
• Make your bed every day.
• Vacuum and dust once a week.
• Do your laundry once a week.
• Change the sheets weekly.
• Mop the kitchen floor once a week.
• Take out the garbage as often as it needs it (if you can smell it, you're overdue). Ditto on emptying the wastebaskets and removing the pile of newspapers.
• Clean the bathroom once a week: Swish out the toilet, wipe down the sink and vanity top, clean the mirror. Mop the floor. If you're a tub bather, clean the tub. The shower? Wipe it down with a squeegee every day.
• Wash the dishes every day. Wipe the countertops and the cooktop.
• Hang up your clothes.

Analog Is Dead: Why All Photo Snapshots Must Be Digitized in 2008, Explains ScanMyPhotos.com

Analog Is Dead: Why All Photo Snapshots Must Be Digitized in 2008, Explains ScanMyPhotos.com
IRVINE, Calif., Dec 24, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- If you are plugged-in to the lightning-fast changes in technology, you know your collection of vinyl albums, VHS cassettes and printed pictures must be digitally converted before it fades away.
"Analog is dead. Now, the race is on to digitally convert generations of favorite memories super-fast and inexpensively," explained Mitch Goldstone, a speaker at the 2008 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES (R)). As part of the January 8th "Spotlight on Imaging" session, Goldstone will discuss what he describes as "the biggest news since the advent of digital photography" and forecast how quickly the 3.5 trillion analog pictures can be digitally saved and shared.
"If you thought the recording and motion picture industries were smart by re-branding and inventing new distribution channels to market their products, the photo imaging industry is also poised to create similar demand and excitement in 2008.
Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com will again address the 2008 CES--the world's largest consumer technology trade show. His updated message on super-fast photo scanning with the KODAK Document Imaging i660 scanners (Kodak.com customer profile), helps digitally preserve generations of photo memories in minutes.
One-thousand photos are digitally scanned in about 10-minutes for just $49.95, or more than 1,600 pictures saved when using the online ScanMyPhotos.com $124.95 prepaid "fill-the-box" U.S. Postal Service Priority mail service.
ScanMyPhotos.com has a treasured history of trust. The company's founders (Goldstone and Carl Berman) are well-known photo imaging industry leaders who created an easy ordering menu for same-day scanning services, including: photo memory albums, Kodak-quality reprints and enlargements, photo restorations, secure and easy online digital photo developing, VHS, 35mm slide and 35mm negative digital conversion services.

Protecting Precious Memories and Data from a Fire - CBS News

Protecting Precious Memories and Data from a Fire
When flames threaten your home and you're forced to evacuate, sheer panic may cause you to forget those cherished photos and videos. In many cases, there's simply not enough time to grab them all.
When we put a local family through an evacuation drill this week, they spent almost all of their time and energy saving their albums, pictures and irreplaceable videos with the kids' first smiles and first steps.
But wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to worry about any of it? With a little planning, that's entirely possible. All you have to do is back up your data online.
Mozy and Carbonite, featured in a recent USA Today article, are two companies that offer unlimited storage for your photos, your music, and your Outlook e-mail files for $50 a year.
As Mozy touts on its website, the great thing about it is that your backup files are encrypted and stored in a secure, remote location that's accessible to you from anywhere. And if there's no time to grab your computer in a fire, your data is safe.
The backups are automatic - just schedule the times to back up your data, and Mozy does the rest.
Carbonite's services are similar, and the company reassures you it is always looking for new data on your PC. The moment you add or modify files, Carbonite swings into action to back up your data.
But what about your old photos - the ones that aren't digital?
You can always scan your photos, but anyone who's tried to do this before knows it can take a long time. If you prefer, you can try a scanning service.
At ScanMyPhotos.com, you pay $124.95 for a pre-paid box. Just fill the box with as many photos as you can fit, and they'll scan them all.
The website says the box can hold more than 1,600 4x6 photos, and they'll accept sizes 3x4 up to 8x12. Then, they'll send you a CD with all the images. You can then back those up on your hard drive or online storage service as well.
When I had to evacuate last week, I hastily took video of my house with my Treo phone for insurance purposes so I could document what I owned in case I lost it all.
A much better way to be prepared is to keep an updated home inventory of your assets. For this, you can get help from a website called KnowYourStuff.org.
You can download free software, and can edit, print and store the valuable items you have in your home. You can even store photos of rooms and objects, making your insurance claims quicker if you're a victims of a fire or earthquake.
Sure, all of this will take some time, but if you're organized and prepared, it could end up saving time, and sparing your precious memories.

CES: “Spotlight on Imaging” Conference

ScanMyPhotos.com CEO Mitch Goldstone to Speak at the Consumer Electronics Show

ScanMyPhotos.com CEO Mitch Goldstone to Speak at the Consumer Electronics Show:
Goldstone to speak in Las Vegas at the "Spotlight on Imaging" CES panel on Tuesday, January 8 from 3 - 4 p.m. in the Renaissance Hotel, Ballroom 1
IRVINE, Calif., Dec 17, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- ScanMyPhotos.com, today announced that president and CEO Mitch Goldstone will speak again at the 2008 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES(R)) as part of a panel discussion entitled: "Spotlight on Imaging." The session is cosponsored by Picture Business Magazine and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA(R)) which produces the 2008 International CES - the world's largest consumer technology trade show.
The panel discussion at the 2008 International CES will take place on January 8, at 3:00 p.m. at the Renaissance Hotel, Ballroom 1, in Las Vegas, NV. It will include essential topics about the future of the photo imaging industry and the commercialization of new digital imaging technologies to inspire and enhance the consumer photo imaging experience.
ScanMyPhotos.com, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc. operates a retail and ecommerce-based photo imaging company that provides super-fast nationwide digital scanning and related photo imaging services. Goldstone and partner, Carl Berman, well-known leaders in the photo imaging industry founded 30 Minute Photos Etc. in 1990 as a retail-based photo center in Irvine, CA.Today, the company and its ScanMyPhotos.com division provides a variety of photo memory services and products to help picture-takers preserve generations of family memories. These include services using: "Perfectly Clear" Crystal Diamond Photo Enhancements by Athentech, professional DVD data discs produced by Microtech's robotic DVD publishing system, Lucidiom self-service digital photo kiosks, and KODAK's award-winning i660 document imaging scanners - the engine behind the company's capacity to digitally scan 1,000 photographs in under ten-minutes.
ScanMyPhotos.com helped commercialize the KODAK document imaging scanners for the photo industry and is profiled on the Kodak.com website. The photo entrepreneurs created a local walk-in and "fill-the-box" scanning service for consumers to order prepaid USPS Priority flat-rate boxes which are mailed out the same day it is ordered. Consumers fill the co-branded USPS and ScanMyPhotos.com prepaid boxes with as many pictures as it can hold (more than 1,600 4x6" photos). All orders are processed and digitally scanned as jpeg files at 300 dpi and mailed back the same day. The prepaid box costs just $124.95 - consumers also receive a free box when they purchase two prepaid boxes so they can have more than 5,500 photo snapshots scanned for $199.90.ScanMyPhotos.com, has scanned nearly four million pictures from around the world and was recently profiled or mentioned in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The Chicago Sun-Times, The New York Times, Reader's Digest, Women's Health Magazine, The Orange County Register, Family Tree Magazine, Popular Photography, Direct Marketing News and scores of other media and Internet / blog coverage.

Great gift ideas booming - Chicago Sun Times

First Film, Now 4x6 Photo Snapshots Are Fading Away, Reports Photo Industry Expert

First Film, Now 4x6" Photo Snapshots Are Fading Away, Reports Photo Industry Expert
Film is dead and so too will be those traditional photo snapshots. No more 4x6" prints at ScanMyPhotos.com and 30 Minute Photos Etc.
Irvine, CA (PRWEB) October 17, 2007 -- First, the ocean-sized shift in the photo industry swallowed up film. Now, according to Mitch Goldstone, a well-known leader in the photo imaging industry, "film is dead, and right behind it are those traditional 4x6" photo snapshots."
Just as digital replaced film, Photo Flip-Books are poised to replace individual snapshots. As a respected and visionary leader in the photo industry since 1990, Goldstone wants to force consumers to see the future. So, ScanMyPhotos.com, and its parent company, 30 Minute Photos Etc. will no longer be promoting traditional 4x6" print services.
"In advance of the holiday picture-taking season, to help force consumers to see the future, 4x6" prints are now history at 30 Minute Photos Etc. Instead, the company is using Lucidiom kiosks to let everyone make their own custom photo expressions," said Goldstone.
Last week, Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com and 30 Minute Photos Etc. addressed the International Photo Marketing Association's UK conference outside of London. He seemed to shock the international audience of photo specialty retailers, because while overseas, photo labs are still developing and printing film, it is at a reduced rate. His assessment was extra worrisome, because his message also warned that photo snapshots are disappearing at an even faster rate. Today, picture-takers, especially the youth market are snapping more pictures than ever, but just not making prints. Instead, they turn their digital cameras and camera phone around to share their collection of photo memories.
However, Goldstone was very encouraged about the innovations and future of the imaging industry because, just as his company, ScanMyPhotos.com, created an entirely new business model to provide super-fast and very economical ways to preserve the trillions of analog pictures that span generations, the next "new-new thing" is 6x6" Photo Flip-Books. Once the pictures are digitized, rather than ordering prints, the most popular request now are to build do-it-yourself Photo Flip-Books. In minutes, his customers choose all their favorite shots and create custom albums that have dozens of templates and styles. Using the Lucidiom kiosks, you can start with a single cover photo, than add multiple pages and modern layouts with a variety of choices, from two, three and four pictures on each page.
Diane and George Sanders use to have about five or six rolls of film developed each year, then came digital cameras and they no longer bought film. Today, the same is happening with how they save and show off their favorite snapshots. In the past, they would order double prints of every picture, now they are using the new Lucidiom photo kiosks to create inexpensive Photo Flip-Books that are finished and ready for pickup in minutes.
"This is a multibillion dollar market that will offset the decline of film developing and print processing," notes Goldstone.
"Our customers, like Diane and George Sanders ordered not one, but separate Photo Flip-Books for everyone photographed at their recent company party," says Goldstone. "The cost was just $7.99 each and all twenty four books were completed within minutes."
Goldstone continues: "Thanks to Lucidiom, the double-sided Photo Flip-Books are the new way to tell stories of events and celebrations and share pictures while having fun. The do-it-yourself kiosks are today's answer to reinvigorating the entire photo business. For more than one-hundred years, the 4x6" print size was the only pictures that fit in albums, but now we have a new way to create more photo products than ever, from electronic scrapbooking pages, to DVD Cinema presentations, Wall Art and collage prints that are completed in minutes."
ScanMyPhotos.com is the leader in super-fast photo scanning with same day return and two innovative services; pay just $124.95 to order a prepaid U.S. Postal Service box that holds more than 1,600+ pictures, or $49.95 to scan up to 1,000 pictures with same day return with several personalized options. The company, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc., operates a nationwide ecommerce photo business and retail photo center based in Irvine, Calif. and was founded in 1990 by co-owners, Mitch Goldstone and Carl Berman. ScanMyPhotos.com uses the award-winning KODAK Document Imaging scanners to preserve generations of photo memories and recently announced it scanned its three-millionth picture. Goldstone is a regular speaker at the Photo Marketing Association and DIMA and has addressed this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and Optical Storage Symposium.

During the Writers Guild of America and Theatrical Stage Employees' Walkout, Watch Your Own Pictures: Says ScanMyPhotos.com

IRVINE, Calif., Nov 16, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- "Hollywood and Broadway might be dark, but people can still be entertained," advised photo industry entrepreneur, Mitch Goldstone.
"People should revisit their own, long overlooked shoeboxes of snapshots, have it digitally preserved and be entertained while they share and watch their own pictures during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and beyond," said Goldstone, ScanMyPhotos.com president and CEO.
Support for the Writers and Stagehands:The entertainment industry strikes have impacted many, but none more than those walking the picket lines. The shutdown is causing widespread hardship. To help show support from the business community, ScanMyPhotos.com has been providing 250 free photo scans to all members of the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE). But, not to the corporate chieftains and industry tycoons who reap much of the revenues gained by those behind-the-scenes workers.To take advantage of the 250 free photo scans, members of the WGA and IATSE are visiting ScanMyPhotos.com. The ordering information includes a link for accredited members to have 250 photographs digitally scanned and mailed back without charge.Today's digital world has triggered a revolution of change in the entertainment industry and beyond. From the film and television writers' walkout in Hollywood, to the dark marquees on Broadway, technology is creating havoc, but also opportunities. For the photo imaging industry, consumers can now have generations of photo snapshots digitally preserved in minutes at a cost much less than even the balcony seats at an off-Broadway play.
ScanMyPhotos.com helps people watch their own generations of family photographs with its super-fast ecommerce photo scanning and retail digital imaging business. They scan 1,000 pictures in ten-minutes for just $49.95, and have prepaid fill-the-box service - the carefree way to have more than 1,600+ 4x6" snapshots scanned and mailed back the same day for just $124.95.ScanMyPhotos.com and its parent company, 30 Minute Photos Etc., are longtime advocates for supporting important causes. After "9/11," the company brought 5,000 people to the Big Apple to support commerce and the city's recovery (EPICCUSA.com). More recently, they are known as the first lead plaintiff in the merchant interchange antitrust battle against Visa, MasterCard and leading member banks, including Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Wachovia and others. A daily website with news and commentary updates on the antitrust litigation is co-edited by 30 Minute Photos Etc. cofounders, Carl Berman and Mitch Goldstone. (WayTooHigh.com)
ScanMyPhotos.com has a treasured history of trust. As well-known photo imaging industry leaders, Berman and Goldstone operate a nationwide ecommerce and retail photo center


Super Fast and Inexpensive Tips on How to Save Photographs on Computers - Yahoo! News

Super-fast and Inexpensive Tips on How to Save Photos on Computers, Offered by ScanMyPhotos.com
Wednesday, Nov 14


ScanMyPhotos.com - the smart way to preserve and share pictures is profiled in Family Tree Magazine.
Irvine, CA (PRWEB) November 14, 2007 -- If the loss of a relative isn't heartbreaking enough, when the family gathers together to reminisce and share those special photo memories, they often stumble upon more anxiety. As they glimpse upon the condition of those favorite, overlooked pictures - stored away in shoeboxes - their memories are often diminished. Without digitally protecting all the family snapshots, photographs can be lost forever.
Family Tree Magazine's (Jan, 2008) "Toolkit" section shares ways to speed up the scanning process. The "Quick Pics" article
Click here to read, written by Rick Crume, profiles several photo scanning services, including ScanMyPhotos.com and its inexpensive and super-fast same-day, fill-the-box service to preserve photos before they fade away and get lost. Family Tree Magazine is America's leading family history genealogy magazine and along with its website (FamilyTreeMagazine.com) helps discover, preserve and celebrate the past.
Super-fast photo scanning was created by ScanMyPhotos.com, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc (founded in 1990). According to company president & CEO, Mitch Goldstone, "people often do not have the patience to scan their photos and they tend to need their digitized pictures right away. So far, we have scanned more than 3,400,000 pictures."


While 1,500 snapshots is an average order size at ScanMyPhotos.com, it takes their super-fast KODAK i660 scanners just minutes to complete each order for its nationwide ecommerce and walk-in retail business.
The second most common question at ScanMyPhotos.com concerns turn-around and whether they send customers' pictures abroad? "Because everything is instant and mailed back the same day, our first answer addresses both concerns," said Goldstone.

But, the most popular inquiry is whether ScanMyPhotos.com really does have such affordable photo scan to DVD prices?

What Is the Cost to Scan Photos?

Option #1: Order prepaid fill-the-box scanning from ScanMyPhotos.com and pay just $124.95 to have more than 1,600+ 4x6" photos scanned. Your prepaid box is mailed to you the same day the order is placed. Everything is included, including the custom DVD data disc and all shipping and handling. This most economical service means that an average cost per scan is about 2.5 cents, and when you buy two boxes, you get the 3rd free -- thus, pay just $199.90 to have more than 5,500 pictures scanned and returned the same day. Many extra services are available, including custom Crystal Diamond Photo Enhancement, photo memory books, volume discounts for multiple extra DVD data discs (low as $2.49 each).

Option #2: Mail your own box and pay just $49.95 to have up to 1,000 photos scanned, plus shipping and handling. All information and a menu of extra products are detailed on the downloadable order form. Customers should first review the online instructions to learn how easily it is to prepare their photos, but note that no copyrighted pictures are permitted.

Super-fast Photo Scanning Interesting Facts:

- While 35mm mounted slides and 35mm negatives are separately priced and individually scanned at 2000 dpi and include custom color and density correction, and free upright rotation, it does also include KODAK Digital Ice enhancements to adjust for dust and scratches.

-The most popular ScanMyPhotos.com service is photo scanning, where pictures are scanned at 300 dpi, so a 4x6" print is digitized at about a large 1.0 -- 1.5 MB compressed file which is ideal for ordering Kodak-quality reprints from their website, sharing, archiving and using as slideshow presentations.

-The average photo scanning service takes just minutes to complete. However, nothing is average at ScanMyPhotos.com, explains Goldstone, "every single photo memory is special and unique. We look at each snapshot, even those old Polaroid pictures as being extraordinary, and that is why bulk-scanning is so important.
How to Scan Photos?

It is as easy as visiting ScanMyPhotos.com. Within minutes, you experience what makes them special. "We make it super-easy to get your photos scanned," said Goldstone, who regularly addresses key photo imaging industry conferences and is a well-known leader in the photo industry.

Even KODAK has recognized the importance of Goldstone and his partner, Carl Berman's company and has a lengthy customer profile on their
Kodak.com website.

What happened during the Family Tree Magazine interview is identical to all the others, explained Goldstone, who described his super-fast scanning and related photo imaging services as something magical. "Ever since 1990, our company has been all about instant turn-around. Consumers want their orders back while they wait, and that is also our model today; for retail customers they literally drop off their photos and within minutes, their entire order is completed. People get so excited and think of us more like 'The Wizard of Oz.' While we make it seem easy, there is a great deal of care and a 17-year history of professionalism that accompanies each order - whether it is just a few hundred scans or our largest single order of 22,000 pictures scanned to DVD which took under five-hours to complete."

ScanMyPhotos.com explained that even though they were featured on page one of "Marketplace" in The Wall Street Journal (Jan 31) and scores of
other profiles and blogger referrals, Family Tree Magazine is among their greatest recognition yet. The magazine and its online site are targeted directly to its core customers -- readers passionate about preserving their memories.

The scanning service is preparing to add several new features, including long-term secured photo archiving and a range of new photo imaging products that are all provided though 30 Minute Photos Etc. - its pro lab retail operation based in Irvine, Calif. All photo scan orders are digitally preserved and currently archived by ScanMyPhotos.com for thirty-days without any additional charge.

ScanMyPhotos.com has a treasured history of trust; the company's founders are well-known photo imaging industry leaders. The ScanMyPhotos.com website provides a detailed ordering menu for additional services, including Photo Memory Books, Kodak-quality reprints and enlargements, photo restorations, photo sharing and extra digital DVDs. 30 Minute Photos Etc. operates an ecommerce online photo service and retail photo center, based in Irvine, Calif. The company is also lead plaintiff in the merchant interchange antitrust class action litigation against Visa, MasterCard and leading member banks, including Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Wachovia and others. A daily website with news and commentary updates is co-edited by Carl Berman and Mitch Goldstone. See: WayTooHigh.com.

More info, visit: ScanMyPhotos.com. Contact: Mitch Goldstone, President & CEO, ScanMyPhotos.com, 92 Corporate Park Plaza, Irvine, CA 92606, Ph: 949-474-7654, Email: info (at) ScanMyPhotos.com. (All company names and products mentioned above are trademarked by their respective companies; Family Tree Magazine is copyrighted by F+W Publications. ScanMyPhotos.com is a registered service mark).


Speeding Up The Scanning Process – Family Tree Magazine (pdf)

How to digitize your life - USA Today

Protect your memories by backing them up:•Scan old photos and documents. Scanners digitize printed material, so you can store it on your PC. They start at around $75 and easily plug into the USB port on any computer. Many all-in-one printers have built-in scanners, which work with software that operates the unit like a copy machine. Scan at resolution of at least 300 DPI (dots per inch) to ensure that you'll be able to produce a good print later.
STORY:
Online data backup can save music, photos from disasterIf your photo collection is too daunting, try a scanning service. Scanmyphotos.com offers scans of as many photos as you can fit in their prepaid box (about 2,000) for $124.95. Organize your photos by size (8x10s, 5x7s, 4x6s) and put them into the prepaid mailer. The photos are returned to you along with a data DVD of your images.

•Make a copy on a data DVD. Most home computers come with free burning software; slip in a blank disc, and follow the prompts to burn the disc by adding files. Or use a more robust program like Roxio Easy Media Creator 10 ($99.99), which lets you make cool-looking DVD covers as well.
• Use an online backup service. Online photo sites such as Shutterfly and Kodak Gallery store low-resolution files of your pictures; in most cases, you'll need to order prints to get them back. Ad-free services such as Phanfare and Smugmug charge about $50 a year and let you retrieve high-resolution photo files. For photos, videos and all your other digital material — from Word documents to your music library — try online backup services such as Mozy or Carbonite, which charge about $50 yearly for unlimited storage.

•Buy an external hard drive. Hard drives get cheaper and bigger every year. A 500-GB hard drive sells for about $100. Fill it with your digital life. For peace of mind, buy a second drive, and take it to a relative's house or put it in a bank safe-deposit box.

•Backup the backup. A power outage can cause a hard drive to fail. So if you have an external hard drive connected to your computer, buy a surge protector strip with battery protection. These units are available for $30 to $40 and have built-in batteries that keep your devices running for around 20 minutes in case of a power failure.
By Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY


Remember 9-11-01, fly the flag

September 11th, 2007 · posted by Jan Norman - Orange Ocounty Register

Mitch Goldstone at 30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine has a simple suggestion to Orange County small-business owners: Fly the American flag in your office, factory or store today, in tribute to those who lost their lives six years ago on this date in New York City, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania.

Goldstone has done so for six years. In fact, on Veterans Day exactly two months after the attacks, Goldstone founded a national group [EPICCUSA.com] of people supporting NYC commerce and the airlines with a visit to the World Trade Center site. Here’s his
photo collection.

ScanMyPhotos.com CEO Mitch Goldstone to Speak at OSTA' Optical Storage Symposium -

ScanMyPhotos.com CEO Mitch Goldstone to Speak at the Consumer Electronics Show:
Goldstone to speak in Las Vegas at the "Spotlight on Imaging" CES panel on Tuesday, January 8 from 3 - 4 p.m. in the Renaissance Hotel, Ballroom 1


IRVINE, Calif., Dec 17, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- ScanMyPhotos.com, today announced that president and CEO Mitch Goldstone will speak again at the 2008 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES(R)) as part of a panel discussion entitled: "Spotlight on Imaging." The session is cosponsored by Picture Business Magazine and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA(R)) which produces the 2008 International CES - the world's largest consumer technology trade show.

The panel discussion at the 2008 International CES will take place on January 8, at 3:00 p.m. at the Renaissance Hotel, Ballroom 1, in Las Vegas, NV. It will include essential topics about the future of the photo imaging industry and the commercialization of new digital imaging technologies to inspire and enhance the consumer photo imaging experience.

ScanMyPhotos.com, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc. operates a retail and ecommerce-based photo imaging company that provides super-fast nationwide digital scanning and related photo imaging services. Goldstone and partner, Carl Berman, well-known leaders in the photo imaging industry founded 30 Minute Photos Etc. in 1990 as a retail-based photo center in Irvine, CA.Today, the company and its ScanMyPhotos.com division provides a variety of photo memory services and products to help picture-takers preserve generations of family memories. These include services using: "Perfectly Clear" Crystal Diamond Photo Enhancements by Athentech, professional DVD data discs produced by Microtech's robotic DVD publishing system, Lucidiom self-service digital photo kiosks, and KODAK's award-winning i660 document imaging scanners - the engine behind the company's capacity to digitally scan 1,000 photographs in under ten-minutes.

ScanMyPhotos.com helped commercialize the KODAK document imaging scanners for the photo industry and is profiled on the Kodak.com website. The photo entrepreneurs created a local walk-in and "fill-the-box" scanning service for consumers to order prepaid USPS Priority flat-rate boxes which are mailed out the same day it is ordered. Consumers fill the co-branded USPS and ScanMyPhotos.com prepaid boxes with as many pictures as it can hold (more than 1,600 4x6" photos). All orders are processed and digitally scanned as jpeg files at 300 dpi and mailed back the same day. The prepaid box costs just $124.95 - consumers also receive a free box when they purchase two prepaid boxes so they can have more than 5,500 photo snapshots scanned for $199.90.ScanMyPhotos.com, has scanned nearly four million pictures from around the world and was recently profiled or mentioned in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The Chicago Sun-Times, The New York Times, Reader's Digest, Women's Health Magazine, The Orange County Register, Family Tree Magazine, Popular Photography, Direct Marketing News and scores of other media and Internet / blog coverage.

Great Gift Ideas _ Chicago Sun Times

Where Have All Your Digital Photos Gone?! Where Have All Your Digital Photos Gone?!

Mitch Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com and 30 Minute Photos Etc. will be addressing next week’s OSTA – Optical Storage Symposium in San Francisco to discuss Photo Archiving- Where Have All Your Digital Photos Gone?! The moderator of this session on Wednesday, September 19th is Melissa Perenson, PC World Magazine’s senior products editor.Goldstone will be discussing how the photography industry is changing the way people use and store photo images. The quantity of photos taken has grown exponentially because of the perception that digital pictures are free. Saving photos is no longer in a shoe box or an album, but typically on someone’s computer and the entire collection can disappear in an instant. Photo archiving is a concept the industry needs to understand and end users need to embrace. Goldstone and the other panel participants will discuss some of the critical issues in digital photography and what alternatives are available to protect consumer’s photo collectio



ScanMyPhotos.com’s image raised by USPS flat-rate box - DM News

One of the goals of marketers is to take advantage of every opportunity to raise brand awareness — and this includes packaging materials.


Seeing that need, the US Postal Service has been working to raise the profile of its co-branded flat-rate box program. The program has been around for more than five years, but is just now beginning to pick up steam among many midsize e-commerce companies.

One such business is Irvine, CA,-based ScanMyPhotos.com, a service that enables consumers to have more than 1,600 personal photos spanning generations digitally preserved and ported to a single DVD data disc.

ScanMyPhotos president/CEO Mitch Goldstone credits partnership with the USPS and the use of flat-rate boxes with both the Postal Service and ScanMyPhotos brands with helping its business grow.

“It’s been extraordinary — we couldn’t have entered into this entirely new business without the flat-rate boxes,” said Goldstone, who began his company 17 years ago as a traditional photo processing service. “Lots of times people send us orders that need to be turned around at the last minute for a birthday or anniversary. So we use USPS priority mail flat-rate boxes for all of our business.”

ScanMyPhotos charges a flat $124.95 to scan as many photos as can be packed into a single flat-rate box. Built into that fee is the $8.95 USPS flat rate for priority shipping.

“We wanted to keep it really simple,” Goldstone explained. “We mail them the box and they can fill it up and return it to us without paying anything. After we scanned their photos, we send back all the pictures along with the DVD data disc all for that one flat fee.”

Because it primarily deals with family memories, Goldstone stressed it was important that customers were comfortable with the shipping process, adding the co-branded boxes also helped with the company’s image.
“When we first started, we would put stamped labels on the boxes ourselves,” he said. “I wouldn’t want to call that hokey, but it wasn’t as professional an image as a company that had been around for as long as we have wanted to convey. So the co-branded boxes have really added a lot of value.”

USPS public relations representative Yvonne Yoerger said the co-branded flat rate boxes are emerging as a solid revenue stream for the Postal Service, adding, “The Postal Service is such a well known brand and offers the credibility and reliability of on-time delivery, so businesses are happy to have their name associated with that.”
In addition to flat-rate boxes, the USPS can also offer direct marketers, who reach certain volume or revenue requirements, co-branded customized packaging.

In addition to helping a company raise its profile, the co-branded boxes also help businessse keep costs down, Yoerger notes, “Another big bonus is our packaging supplies are free to the customer.”


Three Million Pictures Scanned and Fifty-Thousand USPS Co-branded Boxes Ordered by ScanMyPhotos.com - Yahoo! News

Tue Aug 21, 3:01 AM ETIrvine, CA (PRWEB) August 21, 2007 -- The three-millionth snapshot was just scanned at ScanMyPhotos.com and it was a 1980s snapshot of the World Trade Center.


This is an emotional business because decades of traditional photographs are saved as new digital memories to preserve and share forever. To underscore how sensitive scanning pictures are, even the company's celebrity clientele couldn't match the impact of what became the three-millionth picture scanned - It was a snapshot taken in the 1980s of the World Trade Center. Now, it will be memorized forever as a high-quality digital memory.

According to ScanMyPhotos.com, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc. (which began in 1990 as a traditional retail photo center in Irvine, Calif.), they have also begun receiving its order of 50,000 co-branded United States Postal Service Priority Flat Rate boxes. Working in partnership with the USPS, ScanMyPhotos.com is able to provide super-fast turnarounds. According to Mitch Goldstone, President and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com, "the newly imprinted, co-branded boxes help celebrate our commitment and enhances our credibility for the new business model we built to efficiently preserve analog pictures in today's all digital world."

" Our nationwide customers are also sharing overwhelming confidence and trust in the USPS to safely expedite delivery of their treasured photo memories without delay," Goldstone, who is a leader in the photo imaging industry, said "In return we are proud of our relationship with the USPS and this customized service. The USPS treats us as entrepreneurial partners. They instantly respond to our needs and together we are making history; who would have thought that the Post Office has become so entrepreneurial?"

The ScanMyPhotos.com website explains that the same day orders are placed online, prepaid USPS Priority Flat Rate boxes are mailed to fill up with more than 1,600 4x6" photos for just $124.95. Its other service provides super-fast scanning of up to 1,000 pictures for just $49.95. All photo scan orders are completed and mailed back the same business day it is received. Similar services are available for scanning 35mm mounted slides, 35mm negative strips and APS film, but at separate rates.

Goldstone identified several partners that helped him and cofounder, Carl Berman, grow this entirely new business channel for protecting entire generations of family photographs as modern digital files. Most importantly, the award-winning KODAK Document Imaging i660 Series Scanners and Kodak Image Capture Software are the powerful tools they trust to safely and super-quickly scan 1,000 pictures in about ten-minutes (See the following link for the ScanMyPhotos.com customer profile on Kodak.com -
http://www.kodak.com/US/en/dpq/site/TKX/name/StoryScanMyPhotosCom).

A variety of specialty photo imaging services are also featured by ScanMyPhotos.com, including:* Lucidiom Inc. in-store photo kiosks to create DVD Cinema slideshows, instant do-it-yourself custom scrapbooking, collage Wall Art, photo calendars and folded greeting cards depicting the newly digitized pictures along with personalized messages to share.* Athentech's Perfectly Clear image correction software to enhance faded / poorly exposed pictures and Polaroid's.* Custom photo memory albums manufactured and assembled in minutes at ScanMyPhotos.com. * Instant fulfillment of Kodak-quality reprints and enlargements ordering online from ScanMyPhotos.com or at their 30 Minute Photos Etc. retail pro lab center. * Microtech's automated DVD production system to provide digital accuracy, professional quality printing and high volume DVD disc production.* Delicious photo confections by Sweet Images Ltd. * Professional photo restoration services to fix all kinds of old and damaged photographs.More info, visit: ScanMyPhotos.com. Contact info, Mitch Goldstone, President & CEO, ScanMyPhotos.com, 92 Corporate Park Plaza, Irvine, CA 92606, Ph: 949-474-7654, website: ScanMyPhotos.com

(All company names and products mentioned above are trademarked by their respective companies, organizations; ScanMyPhotos.com is a registered service mark).


The Record of Your Life as a Digital Archive - The New York Times

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, Karen Duncan was ordered to leave her uptown neighborhood.Among the possessions that Ms. Duncan, a lawyer, and her family took on their evacuation to Mississippi and later to Baton Rouge were two large trunks, filled not with clothes, but with the stacks of paper that recorded their life: photographs, birth certificates and their dog’s immunization records.


"This is not going to happen again,” Ms. Duncan said. “The next time, I’m carrying a digital flash drive — not trunks — loaded with my pictures.”

Ms. Duncan, like millions of other Americans, has her feet firmly straddled across two technologies: embracing the new digital era but still hanging on to the paper records of the fast-disappearing analog age.
There are many reasons to digitize one’s precious records and store them on a PC: to preserve them from aging, to make multiple copies that can be kept in separate places, and to create multimedia slide shows, perhaps to show future generations.

Digitizing records, whether documents, old photographs, or favorite LPs, “preserves history and lets people tell their stories,” said Mark Cook, marketing director for Kodak Gallery, a Web site that stores consumer photographs.
"People want to use their content with today’s tools, like iPhoto and YouTube,” to create new forms of entertainment, Mr. Cook said.

Today, virtually any traditional document, movie or musical recording can be inexpensively and rapidly digitized and stored on a hard drive. And for those who do not want to spend the time, low-cost commercial services will do the job for you.

DOCUMENTS AND PHOTOGRAPHS

So-called all-in-one printers have become the norm, with machines that print, scan and handle faxes available for under $100.

Optical character recognition software, included with such devices, will recognize printed text and convert it into a form that can be edited by a word processing program.

Photographs can be scanned and saved in the JPEG format at resolutions of at least 1,200 dots per inch. Once in a PC, software like Adobe Photoshop Elements ($80 for the Mac version; $100 for the PC version) can enhance faded colors, remove scratches and crop the image, just as with pictures shot with a digital camera.

Hewlett-Packard’s all-in-one printers can scan in one pass as many photographs as will fit on the scanning tray, then save them as separate images.

Epson’s Perfection 4490 ($350) includes a 30-page document feeder and scans up to three black-and-white pages a minute; it also scans 35 millimeter slides, negatives and photographs.

H.P.’s Scanjet G4050 ($200) scans up to 16 slides or 30 negatives simultaneously, and saves them as separate files. It does not, however, include an automatic sheet feeder for documents.

A number of services will do the conversions for you, either at storefronts or by mail, like Scanmyphotos.com. For those who are concerned about letting their precious memories out of sight, Kodak offers batch digitizing of photographs and other documents through its ScanVan, a vehicle that is currently on tour in the Eastern United States.

HOME MOVIES

The simplest way to digitize those shoeboxes full of Super 8 movies is to use the technique perfected by movie pirates: project the image on a white wall, set up a digital camcorder on a tripod, and then shoot the film.

This is one case where you won’t get the best results if you make it a do-it-yourself project. The different frame rates of movie film and a camcorder could cause annoying flickering of the final image. Send your movies to a commercial transfer service like Audio Video Memories (audiovideomemories.com), Digital Transfer Systems
(digitaltransfersystems.net), and Just8mm.com that uses a telecine machine, a much more sophisticated version of the same home technique.

Movies arrive back on DVDs, ready to be imported into the PC for editing with a program like Apple’s iMovie ($79, part of iLife ’08) for Macs, or for PCs, Adobe Premiere Elements 3.0 ($100).

VHS TAPES

To transfer VHS footage, which is analog, into a computer, the PC needs to receive the data digitally. One way to check if your PC is so equipped to do that is to look at the computer’s ports. If it has the familiar RCA inputs — the yellow, white, and red connectors — then it most likely is analog ready.If not, analog images must first be converted to the digital format. To do so, combination VHS/DVD player/recorders are one of the simplest ways to get your home movies off your aging video tapes and onto more permanent DVDs. Available from Panasonic, Sony and others, prices start at under $200.Alternatively, connect a stand-alone VHS player to a DVD recorder to make a digital copy.VHS tapes can also be recorded onto a computer’s hard drive by plugging the VCR’s output cable into a digital camcorder that offers a “pass through” mode (most do). The signal is digitized within the camcorder, and then passed on to the PC’s hard drive.

Sony’s $229 VRD-MC5 is specifically made to record DVD copies of VHS tapes, or recordings from any camcorder or digital video recorder, without using a PC. VCRs and camcorders are plugged into the device, which resembles a portable DVD deck.

If you do not own a camcorder or DVD recorder, but you have loads of valuable tapes, consider an intermediary conversion product, such as the DAC-200 ($184; synchrotech.com); Dazzle Hollywood DV Bridge ($300; omegamultimedia.com), and VHS to DVD 3.0 ($80; honestech.com). Each product includes hardware and software that converts analog signals to digital.

LPS, EIGHT-TRACKS, AND AUDIO CASSETTES

Getting your old Country Joe and the Fish albums into your PC is one of the easiest conversions to do, according to Tom Merritt, executive editor of CNetTV.com.

Assuming you still have a phonograph turntable (or eight-track or cassette deck) and it is not the console type from the 1950s or earlier, plug the audio output from the turntable’s amplifier/receiver into the minimike port found on virtually all home computers.

While commercial audio editing software is available, Mr. Merritt recommends installing Audacity (audacity.sourceforge.net), a free program available for Macs, PCs and Linux/Unix machines that will manage the files, convert them into a specific format (for example, WAV or MP3), and remove clicks and crackles.
For those who value their time more than the fun of connecting cables and reading manuals, there are plenty of commercial companies happy to do the converting for you. Cassettes2CDs.com will convert audio and video tapes, LPs and 45s to digital format, storing the data on a CD, DVD or MP3 format for iPod use. The company does not handle 78 r.p.m. records, reel-to-reel or eight-track tapes.

If the thought of gathering up boxes full of photographs or phonograph records to digitize is daunting, here is one other compelling thought: your treasured memories will be in a digital format that can still be easily converted to the next video and audio formats that will invariably show up in the coming years.

Eric Taub offers tips on digitizing documents, home movies and photographs. (mp3)



Made in Irvine: Photo Discs - OC Register

ScanMyPhotos.com DVDs help preserve the enjoyment of old photographs. The memories are quickly transformed by a Kodak i660 scanner, which can digitize 750 photos in just five minutes.


Price: $49.95 to scan up to 1,000 pictures; or for $124.95 you can fill up their prepaid box with as many photos as you can.



Generations of Family Photos are Going Digital Super-fast at ScanMyPhotos.com -
Yahoo! News


Thousands of neglected motion pictures need to be preserved, but billions of photo snapshots must be saved too, according to ScanMyPhotos.com.


Irvine, CA (PRWEB) May 24, 2007 -- Because there is an urgent need to save motion pictures at risk of being lost forever, famous entertainment industry leaders are calling to preserve neglected movies, but, there is an equal demand to save another type of picture -- generations of family photos.

" While there are thousands of movies that must be saved, there are billions of snapshots spanning decades that must immediately be restored and preserved," according to ScanMyPhotos.com. The Irvine, Calif.-based photo imaging company claims to have already preserved millions of pictures -- representing shoeboxes of family photos that span generations from across the nation.Unlike the formidable challenge, cost and time to restore a single motion picture, hundreds of individual snapshots are easily scanned in minutes and digitally preserved. While it can take years to restore a single movie, ScanMyPhotos.com uses the award-winning KODAK i660 Series Scanner and KODAK Capture Software to easily protect photo memories as vibrant digital files. The company also turns the preserved pictures into photo memory albums and can magically enhance each picture to help fix faded and discolored snapshots -- especially those old analog Polaroid pictures.
How it works: Shoeboxes from across the nation are mailed each day to ScanMyPhotos.com which provides same-day service for transforming up to one-thousand 3 1⁄2 x 5" - 11x14" pictures in minutes onto digital files for just $49.95. This innovative scanning service also features a "fill-the-box" prepaid program for scanning more than 1,600 4x6" photos for just $124.95. (Special, buy two prepaid boxes and the third is free).
ScanMyPhotos.com, a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc., which was founded in 1990 as a traditional retail photo lab, built this new business model to accommodate the growing need to preserve pictures. Reader's Digest (page-197) and Women's Health (page-56) magazines both are profiling ScanMyPhotos.com in their June issues and other feature profiles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal (Jan 31, page-one, Personal Finance) and USA Today (Mar 8, page-three, Money).
Mitch Goldstone, president and CEO of ScanMyPhotos.com, explained that the company "regularly augments its traditional photo, slide and negative scanning with new products, like, custom Crystal Diamond Photo Enhancements for every picture [Perfectly Clear Software. We also recently added new robotic accuracy for manufacturing the custom DVD discs [Microtech." Goldstone explained that ScanMyPhotos.com uses KODAK imaging technologies to help easily scan hundreds of pictures in minutes (750 photos are scanned in five minutes).
ScanMyPhotos.com digitally preserves photo memories and is a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc. which was founded in 1990 by Mitch Goldstone and Carl Berman who operate a retail and ecommerce business for servicing consumer, amateur and professional photographers nationwide with Kodak-quality photographic imaging, custom photo restorations and Lucidiom in-store electronic scrapbooking photo kiosks.


Page from Reader Digest (JPG)

Article from Women's Health Magazine (PDF)

Microtech, Kodak and ScanMyPhotos.com Work Together to Preserve Our Most Valuable Resources - Memories

Industry-Leading Solutions Provide Fast and Cost-effective Paper-to-Digital Solution for Saving Countless Photos, Images and Important Documents
Last Update: 6:56 PM ET May 10, 2007
BELMONT, Calif., May 10, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Microtech Systems, a world leading developer of CD/DVD/BD media publication and media printing technology, today announced that they are working with ScanMyPhotos.com and Kodak to provide the easiest and most cost-effective paper-to-digital service for consumers and business. A quick and easy service for consumers and businesses needing to preserve the countless photos, images, snapshots and documents to DVD media for better organization, security, long-term storage and access.
Leveraging industry-leading scanning technologies from Kodak and state-of-the-art DVD production and publishing systems from Microtech, ScanMyPhotos.com is providing a fast and cost-effective paper-to-digital conversion service for consumer and business customers and the countless shoeboxes, photo albums and file cabinets filled with priceless photos, images and documents. The Kodak i660 Scanner and Microtech XP publishing system enables ScanMyPhotos.com to automate the digital conversion, organization and storage of paper resources to DVD, making it as easy as shipping a shoebox (with up to 1,000 photos) and receiving a comprehensive DVD for only $49.95!
" We've scanned up to 80,000 photos a day on the Kodak system without any issues, and the automated publishing system from Microtech works flawlessly," stated Mitch Goldstone, founder of ScanMyPhotos.com. "An average project for us is between 1,500 to 1,800 prints, but we had one customer bring in over 19,000 photos in 26 boxes. He dropped them off on a Saturday, and picked up eight DVDs and his original pictures on Monday."
" Working with ScanMyPhotos.com and Kodak to enable the easiest and most cost-effective solution for the preservation of treasured photos and critical business resources has been a very rewarding project for Microtech," stated Corwin Nichols, Founder and President of Microtech Systems. "Our technologies are specifically designed and engineered to provide robust, automated scanning, publishing and distribution in high-volume production environments, which makes for an absolute fit for our combined solution and service offering."
The conversion business is rapidly growing, with high-volume production demands from consumer and corporate markets. ScanMyPhotos.com currently offers services to include up to 1,000 pictures on multiple DVDs for $49.95. Or, for $124.95 ScanMyPhotos.com will scan as many photos as you can fit into a supplied box and pay for shipping both ways.
About Microtech Systems
Microtech is a world leader in robotic CD/DVD/BD disc production systems; driving the growth and sustainability of in-house disc production. Microtech's automated publishing systems enable companies to produce on-demand CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray media with customized digital content, saving valuable human resources thus improving a business' bottom line. Microtech products meet the needs of small and large business around the world.
For more information visit
http://www.microtech.com/
About ScanMyPhotos.com
Since 1990, ScanMyPhotos.com has serviced consumer, amateur and professional film and digital imaging clients nationwide with quality photographic processing and digital conversion services. Providing Kodak-quality photographic pictures, Lucidiom Automated Photo Machines and Luci Scrapbooking Kiosks, ScanMyPhotos.com is modeled to reflect the modern template of photo services, designed to help customers, both consumer and professional, leverage the long-term storage and value of digital resources on optical media.


Your Photos Say More Than You Think - Popular Photography

Mitch Goldstone, runs 30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine, CA and offers a very successful a nationwide photo scanning service (ScanMyPhotos.com). He scans around 100,000 photos a day and it keeps growing (coverage from USA TODAY and The Wall Street Journal aren’t hurting business).
Shifting though millions of pictures Goldstone and his staff have noticed a few trends some scarier than others.They regularly find photos in orders that are filthy, covered with a chemical residual so thick that they had to stop the scanning process to clean the scanner. What is it? Tobacco. They deduced that photos coming from the homes of smokers were regularly stained from nicotine.
“ If this is what is happening to pictures, imaging people’s lungs.” Goldstone says. “The best solution, other than not smoking is to make sure pictures are sealed in boxes or other protective materials.”
As for the most common places people are posed in the pictures they scan:1) Las Vegas2) The World Trade Center3) Disneyland and Disneyworld— Kathleen Davis


Labs see conversion of photos to digital images as a way back to profit - USA Today

IRVINE, Calif. — Photo labs have seen their future, and it's in the past.
Labs — still struggling from the free fall of film processing — have a new and growing source of income: scanning old pictures and converting them to digital images.
Mitch Goldstone runs 30 Minute Photos here in Southern California. He says his business has increased 400% in the last year thanks to a super-high-speed Kodak scanner he discovered.
Kodak sells the scanner mostly to government agencies to digitize checks and tax returns. Goldstone adapted it to zip through large stacks of pictures in seconds.
" Think of the thousands of pictures sitting in closets," he says. "There's an amazing opportunity to digitize them for people at a low cost."
Unlike traditional flat-bed scanners, which can take several minutes to scan one photo, the Kodak i660 scanner has a slot to insert groups of photos. Goldstone says his scanner can copy up to 750 photos in 5 minutes. He charges a flat $49.95 for the service, compared with the $1 per photo-scan charged by many competitors.
Goldstone says he scans 100,000 photos a day. Most orders come from his www.scanmyphotos.com website.
Film photo-finishing sales fell to $2.8 billion in 2006, from $6 billion in 2000. The industry sees high-speed scanning as a way to generate new dollars.
" Until recently, this hasn't been feasible, because it's so painfully slow to scan pictures," says Gary Pageau, an editorial executive at the Photo Marketing Association. "Now, there's an efficient way to do it. For the retailer, the scans lead to additional products, like more prints, calendars and photo books."
Kodak's scanner was never intended for digital photography. But other photo labs jumped aboard after Goldstone began reporting his success at digitizing old snapshots stuffed in shoeboxes and selling customers new prints and photo books.
Goldstone's scanner cost $40,000. Some 150 photo retailers found a less expensive, and slower, $800 Kodak scanner. Instead of 750 pictures in 5 minutes like Goldstone's unit, the Kodak i1220 can do 150 at a time.Kodak, also still struggling to recover from the decline of film, is showcasing the i1220 scanner for the first time at the Photo Marketing Association trade show in Las Vegas this week.
However, the scanner now has a heftier price tag: $3,000. Kodak says the scanners are now bundled with software and functionality aimed at self-service customers. The scanner can still be purchased at the lower price, without the software, Kodak says.
" When we first introduced the scanner seven years ago, I knew it was capable of much more, but the digital conversion hadn't happened yet," Kodak Vice President Brad Kruchten says. "People didn't appreciate the need to digitize their earlier photos, and have everything in one place. Now's the right time."Gary Rodgers, who runs the In a Flash Camera shop in Chester, N.J., says adding the $800 i1220 scanner paid for itself within a week. "I'm seeing customers bringing me four to five hundred pictures at a time," he says.

Shoebox scanning services featured in the Wall Street Journal

ScanMyPhotos.com Launches; Offers One Price Batch Photo Scanning

Digital Camera Info - by Karen M. Cheung January 24, 2007
Looking for a way to archive your family pictures? Divide personal photos in the divorce settlement? California-based photo retailer 30 Minute Photos Etc. launched
ScanMyPhotos.com today, offering customers quick mass scanning of about 2000 photos for just under $100.
"Everything is instant and easy,” said 30 Minute Photos Etc. President and CEO Mitch Goldstone in an interview with DigitalCameraInfo.com.
Under the slogan “From Shoebox To CD,” ScanMyPhotos.com allows consumers to digitalize their printed photos through online ordering of a pre-paid US Priority Mail box. For a flat fee of $124.95, users can have any number of prints scanned, so long as they fit in one of the two box sizes. The Regular Photo Box at 11in. x 8.5in. x 5.5in. fits about 1500 to 2000 4x6 prints, and the Enlargement Photo Box at 11.87in x 3.37 x 13.62in. can hold larger 8x10 prints.
Upon arrival, ScanMyPhotos.com uses Kodak hi-speed photo scanners to batch scan the images that same day. The photos are saved onto DVDs as 4x6 sized images at 300dpi, approximately 1.5 or 2 megapixels each and sent back to the customer without additional return fees.
When asked about the risk of placing entire photo collections in one box through the mail, Goldstone said Minute Photos Etc. hasn’t lost a box yet, with each box marked with a tracking number. The CEO cited other possible photo disasters such as flood and fire. “If you don’t send them to us, you will lose them…It is essential to have [your photos] digitalized,” said Goldstone.
In addition, ScanMyPhotos.com keeps customer’s files on record for 30 days, during which time users can order additional copies or photo merchandise.



30 Minute Photos Etc. Launches ScanMyPhotos.com for Effortless and One Price Photo Scanning

30 Minute Photos Etc. Launches ScanMyPhotos.com for Effortless and One Price Photo Scanning
(Irvine, CA) - Do you want to preserve generations of family pictures without any hassle? Until now, you had to individually scan each picture by hand, which could take days or longer. This was a chore few people wanted to undertake.
As a new division of 30 Minute Photos Etc., ScanMyPhotos.com protects everyone's precious photo memories with Kodak high-speed scanning technology and an easy-to-use prepaid, protected box. Just fill-the-box [available in two sizes which holds about 1,500 - 2,000 snapshots and send to ScanMyPhotos.com. Within minutes of receipt, the photos are instantly scanned and prepared for free return delivery across the U.S. for only $124.95.
Since 1990, 30 Minute Photos Etc., the Irvine, Calif retail and national online boutique photo service has been a well-known leader in the photo imaging industry. During the past year, they perfected a nationwide service for scanning huge quantities of pictures. The average order size they scan is about 2,500 pictures.
According to company president, Mitch Goldstone, technology and demands have moved at lighting-fast speed and people are seeking an even easier way to get their photos scanned. "This is why we launched ScanMyPhotos.com and the flat-fee, unlimited photo scanning kit which includes free round-trip shipping and same day service," explained Goldstone. As a speaker at the recent International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Mr. Goldstone explained how Kodak's photo scanning technology this the biggest news since the advent of digital photography. He also explained that photo scanning services must be convenient, easy, effortless and not just fast, but instant. "Everything in the photo imaging industry today must be instant," advised Goldstone, who specializes in instant fulfillment for his Kodak-quality photo print orders via 30minphotos.com, his national online boutique photo service.
Customers order from two protected box sizes which are designed to hold about 1,500 - 2,000 traditional 4-inch by 6-inch photographs. The Enlargement Box has an inside dimension of 11 7/8 x 3 3/8 x 13 5/8 and holds any size images up to 8-inches x 10-inches. The Regular Photo Box has an inside dimension of 11 x 8 1⁄2 x 5 1⁄2 and is designed for images up to 5-inches x 7-inches. Upon ordering, the boxes are mailed out on the same business day and include free flat-rate return shipping.
Regular Photo Box(fits up to 1,500 ­ 2,000 4x6 photos)Inside dimensions - 11" X 8.5" X 5.5"
Enlargement Photo BoxInside dimensions - 11-7/8" x 3-3/8" x 13-5/8"
Additional Order OptionsThe
ScanMyPhotos.com website provides a detailed ordering menu for additional services, including Photo Memory Books, Kodak-quality reprints and enlargements, photo restorations, and extra digital DVDs.

Gadgetress Video Blog

30 Minute Photos Etc. Kodak ProLab Premium Member

For photographers who find themselves working on location or on specialty projects, either cross town, cross country or cross continent, Eastman Kodak Company® provides them with a one-stop online location to find a lab that provides the highest quality services and output, including KODAK PROFESSIONAL ENDURA Media. Since 2004, 30 Minute Photos Etc. has been part of the KODAK ProLab Resource Center and is among the few specialty professional labs internationally to hold this distinction as part of the Kodak Professional Imaging Solutions.Pro photographers value this service for locating the local Kodak Prolab for identifying labs that print on Kodak photographic papers. Since 1990, 30 Minute Photos Etc. has only trusted the Kodak brand because of its commitment to consistent quality and emulsion technologyTo access the ProLab Locator, photographers can click here

30 Minute Makeover, Retailer 30 Minute Photos Etc. debuts new look, services (PDF)

Photo retailers benefit from 'Starbucks effect'

Photos scanned superfast - OC Register

Photos scanned superfast - Hundreds of old pictures are ready in minutes
By TAMARA CHUANG The Orange County Register
Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh. Within minutes, a small machine inside 30 Minute Photos in Irvine has scanned nearly 1,000 photos.
Customers are bringing boxes of old photos for owner Mitch Goldstone to turn into digital memories. But the Kodak i660 super scanner is no toy. It cost Goldstone $60,000. It's one of maybe two available to consumers nationwide, says Kodak, which usually sells the machines to businesses that scan thousands of checks, documents and other files daily.
Digital photography turned Goldstone's business from one that helped customers develop a half-dozen rolls of film a year to one that has customers from all over the country ordering hundreds of photos at a time.
But the i660 is adding something else.
The machine, which looks like a small copier, can handle almost all photo sizes, from 21⁄2–by-3 inches to 11-by-14 inches. It can scan both sides in case there's writing on the back. When the order is done, images are burned to disc. The shop charges about $50 for 1,000 photos.
Goldstone enjoys the mysteriousness of the speedy scanner, especially when he presents a customer with the finished CD within minutes of an order.
But Goldstone gave the Register a special behind-the-scenes look at the machine.
Watch the machine in action. For more on the service – and to see the results of our own order visit the Gadgetress blog.

Super photo scanners DO exist! - OC Register

Super photo scanners DO exist!
By TAMARA CHUANGThe Orange County Register
I finally found the time to head down to 30 Minute Photos Etc., the Irvine photo store owned by Mitch Goldstone. I wish I had stopped by six months ago when Mitch first told me about his new super scanner.
Super, it truly is. It scans, on average, 120 photos per minute. That's 1,000 photos scanned in approximately 8-minutes and 20 seconds.
I didn't really believe it. Greg Magnus, the Register's video guy who traveled with me to document this on VIDEO, didn't believe it either. Until we saw it in action. Mitch prefers to keep the process a mystery and won't show customers the machine. But he gave us a behind-the-scenes look at how everything works.
The service, which Mitch calls [
ScanMyPhotos.com], starts with the Kodak i660 document scanner, a $60,000 machine meant for businesses to take photographic images of tax forms, checks and other non-digitized documents. It's essentially a camera that takes a high-res photo of each document and files it away on a computer for safer keeping.
Mitch is pretty innovative. Jack Kasperski, who handles press for Kodak's document imaging, told me that Mitch found a way to turn the i660 into a photo scanner fit for to quickly scan consumers' collections of old photos. The service has very limits. It will scan nearly all sizes of photos, from 2.5-inch-by 3-inch to 11-by-14 inches. It will scan front and back (in case you want to preserve writing) and it does other sorts of documents as well, such as invitations and post cards.
Since Kodak doesn't sell the machines directly to customers but through a third-party reseller, Jack said he's unsure if there are any other i660s available to people like you and me. Mitch believes there's one other store - in Rochester where Kodak is headquartered. As a result, Mitch gets a lot of orders from all over the nation. If you want to get thousands of old photos scanned in minutes, you've got to send your business to Irvine.
Now, to make the process go smoothly...
Mitch does require a few things: Photos should be sorted by size, with smallest first. They should all be right-side up. And they shouldn't be stored in envelopes. Requirements are posted
HERE.
Once the machine starts, it's fascinating to watch. It's like a term paper being fed into the copy machine. As each photo is scanned, its digital-thumbnail image pops up on a computer screen. Special software keeps the photos in order. In the future, the process could include automatic touch-ups but right now, Mitch burns everything to a disc and lets the customer pick and choose and fix photos on their own time.
So, to test this out, I found some old photo albums at my parent's house, put them in a box and headed to 30 Minute Photos. Mitch explained each step along the way so it took more than five minutes for me. But I was in and out within the hour - photos scanned, interview done and blog pictures taken. I returned one more time with Greg the video guy to shoot the action.
Mitch said that he or an employee sits by the machine to make sure it doesn't mess up, which it did a few times when it was trying to scan too many photos at one time. I got some wacky results. But as you can see, I didn't follow Mitch's directions:
Like this one(right), where a tiny mug shot snuck into this graduation photo. The mug is smaller than Mitch's minimum of 2.5-inches by 3-inches. I also didn't put all my photos in order, right side up. As a result, quite a few photos are upside down on the CD Mitch made me.
On this ripped photo (below), I'm surprised it didn't get caught in the scanner. I'm happy that it turned out, even with the gash in the corner. Now, if I did have the missing piece, Mitch said he could mend the photo virtually and no one would be the wiser.
In the end, I got about 850 photos scanned (some of those include the both sides). I was pretty pleased with what my $50 got me because I cannot image taking the time to do it myself on my Canoscan at home. I only wish he could scan whole pages from an old photo album quickly to save me the trouble of taking photos out of an album. He can take a photo of the page, but not with the speedy scanner. That's another service.
I'm pretty happy with the result. That's why I'm writing about it. This is $50 well spent. Plus, local customers who buy a service get a free bottle of Voss water and a Ghirardelli chocolate bar (although I didn't get this on my visit! Ah well. A reason to stop by again...)

Digital Scrapbooking; Help For Women Who Love to Shop (Really!) - The Technology Tailor

Scanning made cheap and easy - Got Prints? - Popular Photography

Scanning made cheap and easy - Got Prints?
By John Owens July 2006
I walked into the Wegmans supermarket with a box full of prints. Old, new, color, b&w, even sepia-toned antiques. In sizes ranging from a few inches square to 8x10s. Eighty minutes later, I walked out with a CD containing 402 JPEGs, along with printouts of thumbnail-size copies of every shot.
Who doesn't have lots of old prints that deserve to be copied, shared, and preserved? But who has the negatives? Mine went the way of my 29-inch waist. And who has the time or patience to scan them all at home? Especially when you can get it done so cheaply. My tab at Wegmans? $49.99.
This miracle of digitization is part of an experiment Kodak is conducting to see if there's a business in converting shoeboxes full of prints into JPEG files that can be printed, e-mailed, or just safely stored for years.At the heart of this venture is the Kodak i660, a document scanner used by banks, insurance companies, and other operations to digitize huge quantities of paper files. While the machine is only the size of a two-drawer filing cabinet, its specifications are huge . According to José Rivera, who's in new business development at Kodak, the i660 costs more than $44,000 and is rated for 60,000 documents a day on paper of various types and sizes.
If the i660 can turn the paperwork from a fender-bender into a crisp digital file, why not your baby pictures?
Kodak tweaked the software and equipped two Wegmans supermarkets around Rochester, NY, with i660s that scan up to 120 4x6s per minute.
In Irvine, CA, entrepreneur Mitch Goldstone similarly uses an i660 at his 30 Minute Photos Etc. store. He even services by mail. (Wegmans is strictly walk-in.)
I dropped my box of prints on the counter, and the clerk and I went through them, making sure they all faced up; that there were no Polaroids (“the machine doesn't like them”); and we weren't scanning professionally shot photos (Kodak respects photographers' copyrights). We also pulled out badly wrinkled prints, and any that had tape or glue on them. But there were no more than a dozen rejects. The other 402 prints—ranging from souvenir photos of Coney Island circa 1910, to my parents' wedding pictures, to my first-grade class photo, to shots I printed on an inkjet just days before—flew through the scanner like confetti before a fan. And not one of them was harmed in the process.
Here's what you get: 300-dpi JPEGs burned to a Kodak Picture CD that includes not only your photos, but also software by Kodak that makes it easy to edit, print, e-mail, and upload shots to photo-processing sites. While the scanner packs picture-enhancing software similar to what's in a Kodak minilab, it wasn't used on my shots; they were scanned only.
I used the EasyShare software to make adjustments on a dozen different pictures and printed both the original and enhanced versions on a Canon i960 inkjet. When done at 1:1—that is, at the same size as the original print—both versions looked quite good. Some of the old ones were improved over the original. But going much larger than the original size often would lead to softness and the picture breaking up.
f you're looking to reproduce a couple of heirloom photos as gorgeous works of art, use your own flatbed scanner and powerful image-editing software. But if, like me, you have piles of prints that seem destined to spend eternity boxed away, unshared and unprotected, visit Wegmans—you may leave as happy as I did.
More Information:
In Irvine, CA, 30 Minute Photos Etc. offers this service to both walk-in and mail-order customers. Company President Mitch Goldstone said that it is “incredibly successful,” with orders coming in from around the world. Prices start under Wegmans, with Goldstone charging $49.95 for up to 1,000 scans. And he promises very quick turnaround. For details visit our
scanning section.
http://www.popphoto.com/popularphotographyfeatures/2631/scanning-made-cheap-and-easy.html

Photo Industry’s Transitions from Film to Digital is Nearly Complete, Reports Photo Industry Executive - Yahoo! News

Photo Industry’s Transitions from Film to Digital is Nearly Complete, Reports Photo Industry Executive
Irvine, CA (PRWEB) June 14, 2006 -- Photo retailers in the U.S. and abroad are reporting almost no traditional film orders. While this would have been an ominous strike against the imaging industry just a few years ago, acceptance of digital photography is eclipsing the lost film revenues with new products.

"Just look at the habits of today's soccer fans attending World Cup Germany 2006® to recognize that digital cameras are fully integrated and everywhere. Customers we heard from did not see a single film camera in the stadium or on the streets in Munich," explained photo industry expert, Mitch Goldstone. Whether it is at the world's largest sporting event or locally at retail photo centers like Goldstone's Irvine-Calif-based 30 Minute Photos Etc.®, the photo industry's transition from film to digital is nearly complete.
"Service is becoming as valuable a marketing tool as brand awareness," said Goldstone, who also operates the national online boutique photo service, 30minphotos.com. "The marketing capital that galvanized the industry for generations has shifted from manufacturers' brand recognition to personality and service. When picture-takers use the Internet for most online photo services, the texture of those websites is nearly identical. Machines do most of the work and there is little to differentiate one service from the next. Most are indistinguishable and the standouts specialize in old-fashion customer service."
It almost appears that the online photo brand leaders have shifted their business models from reputation to pricing. Could this shift commoditize themselves out of the picture? While they sell photo coffee mugs and pictures on tee-shirts, the independent photo specialty retailers are selling personality. Photo labs understand that it is not machines, but real people and service that matter most.
"It's the special human touch from traditional photo retailers that contribute to enhancing every order. The distant factories that mass produce photo orders in walled buildings are competing against local retailers with real store fronts. The latter are involved with their communities, see the customers, smile and hold hands," explained Goldstone.
It is all about old-fashion customer service and interacting with people, rather than relying on machines and computers. Picture-takers want to have a connection to the business they are trusting with their photo memories. This is why more photo retailers are creating their own online services as an extension of their famed personality and service to boost the buzz about their traditional retail stores.
Because technology in the photo business has moved at lightening-fast speed, it has also enabled single, independent photo businesses to compete effectively by offering their own online and in-store photo services.
Photography is an art rather than a science and consumers benefit from a real person with which to interact. Photo labs which embrace all the newest online and in-store technologies hold the advantage.
For instance, Kostas Mallios, director of venture integration for Microsoft® addressed the April Photoimagers Manufacturers and Distributors Association monthly meeting. Photo Trade News reported in May that Mr. Mallios wanted to see broad availability of online services to include not just the larger chain stores, but also the local retail photo labs too.
Six new business growth areas where retailers are using their personal customer service to explain new technology offerings are:
1) Kodak® high-speed photo scanning to preserve generations of family pictures; scan 750 pictures in 5-minutes. As the first online scanning service,
http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/prweb/bs_prweb/storytext/prweb398735/19346987/SIG=110gtq4kv/*http://www.ShoeboxReprints.com ® has designed a new business model to complement its parent service, http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/prweb/bs_prweb/storytext/prweb398735/19346987/SIG=10sq39t8j/*http://www.30minphotos.com ®.
2) Lucidiom® electronic photo scrapbooking kiosks and Automatic Photo Machines with in-store photo gift ordering and instant file transfers from CD to DVD slide shows.
3) Redesigned retail stores offering unique destination to encourage people to stay and play with their digital images. Photo labs should sell all scrapbooking supplies, frames and offer customers Luci® professional scrapbooking templates. See "In The News" link at
http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/prweb/bs_prweb/storytext/prweb398735/19346987/SIG=10sq39t8j/*http://www.30minphotos.com ® for store redesign and other recent news profiles.
4) Instant online ordering with "24/7" live technical support and same day mail return or instant pickup service to strengthen local photo labs.
5) Partnering with Internet companies like Photogize® to provide the most complete end-to-end solution for digital photo finishers.
6) Modernizing existing photo lab equipment with printers from Noritsu® which has a rich heritage of photo innovation and pioneering digital imaging technologies and from other leading manufacturers

30 Minute Photos takes 'Starbucks approach' to photo kiosks

30 Minute Photos Etc. Redesigns Irvine Store with New Lucidiom Photo Kiosks
Putting a fresh face forward - OC Register

New Kodak technology will know what you are looking for in hunt for old pictures - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

Find photos in a flashNew Kodak technology will know what you are looking for in hunt for old pictures
Ben RandStaff writer
brand@democratandchronicle.com
(May 7, 2006)The next chapter of digital photography as envisioned by Eastman Kodak Co. reads a little like a Ray Bradbury novel or the script of the 2002 movie Minority Report.Kodak and others in the industry believe that in the future, you won't have to waste time trying to recall details of an old photograph. Your computer will tell you where and when the photo was taken, who was in it, even how old they were at the time.And that, believe it or not, could just be for starters. Researchers across industry and academia are hard at work developing futuristic technologies that could transform digital picture-taking by enabling images to communicate useful information."The whole strategy for us in pressing the fast-forward button in this new chapter is looking at how we can break the mold of the old system ... so that consumers will be inspired to do more," says Pierre Schaeffer, chief marketing officer for Kodak's consumer digital photography group.This vision of the future could mean that you would no longer have to search manually for pictures of your children — the PC or other device will do it for you. Need images or videos from your trip to Florida? Pictures from birthday parties through the years? A few clicks of the mouse will produce them.The breakthrough applications could provide a critical boost to Kodak's plans for digital imaging. By making it easier to find and organize your images, the company believes it will generate new revenue through increased sales of items such as keepsake photo books, unique online photo-sharing services or products not yet imagined.There is some urgency: Kodak last week reported a loss of $298 million during the first quarter, marked by a 10 percent decline in revenue from consumer digital photography.A whole new worldLong talked about, but now on the verge of reaching the marketplace, the technologies — showcased to reporters in New York recently — are part of a research area known as "image understanding." Simply put, image understanding holds that pictures, like words, have no meaning without context — "the who, the what, the where, the when and, in some cases, the which and the whose," says Patrick Cosgrove, program manager for intelligent content and semantic understanding at Kodak.As envisioned, those questions would be answered by high-level software that analyzes the telltale clues silently captured every time you snap a digital photo.The research is currently focused on three main areas: recognizing people through their faces, identifying objects such as trees or basketballs and analyzing the background. The ultimate goal is not to gather information for information's sake, Cosgrove says, but to turn "data into knowledge."He provides an example: In the future, digital cameras may routinely record the latitude and longitude of where the photo was taken through an internal global positioning system. By itself, that information isn't useful to the average person. But imagine if it could be used to sort pictures taken at a specific place, such as grandma's house, he said.Kodak is not committing to a specific date when the technology will be widely available. If and when it is, the technology will more than likely not be a stand-alone item — rather, it will be found inside another product, such as a digital camera or a photo kiosk.The company is not alone in pursuing this line of research, as a conference in Rochester will show this week. A dozen scientists from industry and academia will be talking about cutting-edge projects as part of "frontiers in imaging," at the George Eastman House on Thursday, part of the weeklong International Congress of Imaging Science.Out of the boxSome projects, however, are closer to fruition. The company is marketing a new service aimed at creating a digital archive from the box of prints found in virtually every closet.The service, known as Scan the World, is built around a high-speed scanner and organizational software. Kodak is testing the service in Wegmans Food Markets on Latta Road in Greece and Penfield Road in Penfield. Since December, consumers have used the service to scan 75,000 prints.The next generation will likely come with higher-level software that will organize pictures into the decades they were taken, based on analyzing the photo's size and shape and a scan of its watermark.Scan the World is an illustration of an important change in the photo industry, said Jeff Holdsworth, photo category merchant for Wegmans.In the past, photo counters essentially acted as manufacturers, Holdsworth said. Consumers brought in film, and photo-processors made pictures. In the future, consumers will be in control and will direct the industry on what services to provide, Holdsworth said."The goal is to try to serve consumers by changing the way they access their images," Holdsworth said. Wegmans is testing a range of pricing: Scanning up to 40 pictures costs $19.99; at the top, consumers can have Wegmans scan up to 4,000 pictures for $199.99.The bigger pictureThe initial cost for the scan is only the beginning of the revenue opportunity, says Mitch Goldstone, co-owner of 30 Minute Photos Etc., a photo retailer in Irvine, Calif. Goldstone's store has been offering Scan the World since November. He says that once the shoeboxes are in digital form, customers are sending them to friends and family, who are then coming in for reprints.He sees it immediately in the store. Goldstone will invite customers to view their images on an in-store kiosk. At first, he says, people go through their images quickly. "But then, they slow down and start to make prints," he said.Goldstone is looking forward to getting his hands on the newer technologies. The ability "to have the software recognize faces, to have them archived by decade — it's extraordinary."And extraordinary to more than just Kodak. Microsoft Corp. and Adobe Systems Inc., as well as major universities such as Rochester Institute of Technology, the University of Rochester and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have programs focusing on image understanding.Microsoft, for instance, is promising enhanced photo organization and archiving in connection with the upcoming release of Windows Vista, the next-generation operating system. One of the goals is to make it easier for users to attach information to their images and be able to retrieve it using a range of software programs, said Ed Lee, digital imaging analyst for InfoTrends Research Group Inc. of Boston.The value of the new technologies is far greater than just printed products. There is likely money to be made in helping consumers transmit their images electronically, Lee said.And if pictures are considered "personal content," there may be opportunity in the cross-section with licensed content — for instance, inserting your portrait into a Boston Red Sox uniform and making a print, Lee said.Taking shapeBusiness opportunities are just being formed, says Andreas Savakis, a former Kodak researcher, now an RIT professor of computer engineering."As people collect more and more digital images, the business case becomes stronger," says Savakis, who has collaborated with Kodak on several research projects at RIT.One of the next frontiers may be enabling more of a grassroots exchange of photos, a top industry analyst says.Today, sharing photos online with large groups requires the use of a central repository — a service such as Shutterfly.com or KodakGallery.com. It would be a lot easier to have a system "where you say, 'I'll send you my files, you send me yours,'" said Alexis Gerard, publisher and founder of the Future Image Report, a California-based industry researcher.That was exactly the experience of Bob Witeck, chief executive of a Washington, D.C., marketing communications firm. Witeck used Scan the World offered by Goldstone's store. He sent a box of images to Goldstone and got back a CD that he gave to his sister, who is battling breast cancer." It's been a huge home run. We've been sending pictures to friends and family we haven't seen in a long time," he said.

Cool Kodak Technology - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

Cool Kodak Technology
I am just back from New York, where Kodak had a little gathering of reporters and analysts to talk about some futuristic technology straight out of movies such as "Minority Report."
Kodak, for instance, is playing around with software that will recognize faces. The application would be able, theoretically, to search all the pictures on your hard drive and pull out every image of you son or daughter, aunt or uncle, mom or dad.
That's all well and good, but what then? Kodak's got software that will automatically organize those images into albums. So, for instance, you could end up this process with an album that tells the story of your family's year in pictures. Or more.
In the future there may be the capacity to analyze the pictures for certain scenes -- grouping indoor and outdoor shots together, for example, or even spotting Christmas tree shots.
This is more than vaporware. Kodak's now marketing an industrial scanner that will allow you to bring your shoeboxes of images into a local retailer -- it's being tested at Wegmans right now -- and walk out with a Picture CD.
But not any old CD. The software is able to look for clues in the images and group them by decade, based on the type of photo technology that was prevalent in that time frame. For instance, there was a brief period when the photo industry liked to print pictures with rounded corners. With all that information in hand, it becomes relatively easy to direct the software to route the images to the 1970s file.Mitch Goldstone, undoubtedly the nation's most outspoken photo retailer, has had this scanning service in place since last November. Though he's in California, he's willing to scan images long distance (if you're confident sending them!) Go to this site for more details.

Retailer Spotlight: 30 Minute Photos Etc.Entrepreneurial Spirit Promotes His Business and the Industry 24/7

Shoeboxes full of photos give way to CDs - Irvine World News

Shoeboxes full of photos give way to CDsBusiness adapting to changing technology of photography.
BY DEBBIE L. SKLAR FOR IRVINE WORLD NEWSSunday February 5, 2006
Mitch Goldstone and Carl Berman are helping families save years of cherished memories quicker than say, a camera flash.
Since 1990, 30 Minute Photos Etc. has been serving amateur and professional clients with their photo needs, but times have changed in the photo world — going from film to digital — and that meant Goldstone and Berman had to change, too.
“Business has definitely changed due to digital cameras and I discovered that as a business owner, you need to acknowledge those changes,” Goldstone, president of the company said. “The business has shifted from a solid film base to one that is 100 percent digital.”
SHOEBOX REPRINTS And these days, they can turn shoeboxes of treasured photos into archived 300 dpi digital images for $49.95 (per 1,000 images). And it’s done in minutes, while you wait, or the CD will be mailed back the same business day, nationwide. Using Kodak’s most advanced high-speed commercial scanners and Kodak Capture Software, family photos are kept on CDs, not in shoeboxes.
“Nearly every family has shoeboxes full of photos and this is the perfect way to get them all together,” Goldstone said. Once the images are scanned, customers can use them to order photo postage stamps through the ShoeboxReprints.com Web site. Out-of-town friends and relatives can then order their own photos with same-day service from 30minphotos.com.
“The convenience factor is overwhelming,” Goldstone said, “because any size photo — from tiny wallet pictures on onionskin thin paper to 11-by 17-inch enlargements are all scanned together, instantly.” Goldstone says it’s the natural evolution from film photography, which created those shoeboxes of photos, to digital photography, which typically captures photos on a CD for easy storage and quick access.
“What would take you weeks to accomplish, our online boutique photo services does in seconds,” he said.
Goldstone’s client base has changed from just Irvine residents to military families with family members serving abroad.
“I remember 15 years ago, my business was entirely local,” he said. “Today, I have customers from all over the United States, and as far away as the Middle East. If you had told me 10 years ago that someone from Alaska would be using my services, I would never have believed it.”
EVER-CHANGING Technology continues to evolve quickly in the world of photography.
“Ever since digital cameras came about five years ago, the technology has continued to advance quicker than ever before,” Goldstone said. “This is definitely a cool time to be in the photo world, but I have seen a lot of photo businesses close up shop because they couldn’t go with the changes.”
Business used to rely on the number of film rolls dropped off to be processed.
“People still use film, but very little,” he said. “I think those in the photo business can either watch what is happening or jump on the new technology bandwagon.”
Goldstone will continue to work out of his Irvine location, which he said isn’t some “big factory” because most of the labor is automated.
His store has attracted a number of high-profile clients, Goldstone said, including Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
“We do all of his fundraising photos,” Goldstone said. “We got that job because of how sensitive we are to photos. It has been an honor for us to do the work.”
FOR THE TROOPS Last year, Goldstone’s national online photo service founded “Operation Photo” to donate used digital cameras to military families.
He’s at it again this year, and in advance of Valentine’s Day 30minphotos.com is providing free return shipping to all military families to help soften the distance from those deployed abroad.
Also, 30 Minute Photos Etc. is extending free return shipping to all military families using ShoeboxReprints.com to preserve photos for sharing with family members abroad.
“It is gratifying to know that we are playing a role in uniting and bringing families together through pictures, because this helps boost moral for troops overseas,” he said.
“On Valentine’s Day, they can’t get chocolate and flowers, but they can open e-mails and instantly view generations of family pictures that we have scanned in for them.”


Business Model Changed? How to communicate your new direction to customers. - OC Metro


Business Model Changed?How to communicate your new direction to customers.
By Paul Sterman
Picture this: For years your photo processing business has been turning a nice little profit. You’ve got a loyal clientele and business is moving ahead with the regularity of a one-hour photo machine pumping out prints. Then, in a flash, digital photography goes mainstream and everything changes.
SNAPSHOTWHO: Mitch Goldstone, co-owner of 30 Minute Photos Etc. WHAT: 30 Minute Photos Etc. is a photo-processing business that has had to reinvent itself as technology advances the industry. Recently, the shop added ShoeboxReprints.com to its business, using a super-high-speed Kodak print scanner originally designed for banks.
WEBSITE: www.30minphotos.com
BEST ENTREPRENEUR MOMENT: When he and partner Carl Berman launched 30minphotos.com the retailer’s online boutique photo service. At first, orders were coming in slowly and only from local customers. But gradually, business came in from all over the country, including leaders in entertainment and politics even Gov. Schwarzenegger.
Later this month, Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine, will address attendees at the Photo Marketing Association’s International Convention and Trade Show. His talk will focus on a new digital-photo service his Kodak shop launched this past November one he believes will spark a sea change in the photo-processing industry.
There’s a generosity to his gesture: Goldstone believes in sharing technological information with his colleagues that can help the industry as a whole. But part of the reason for his speech is also pragmatic. The local entrepreneur contends that whenever you are moving in a new direction with your business and Goldstone has been through several transitions since starting up in 1990 a key to getting your message out in the marketplace is becoming involved with your professional trade groups and industry associations.
“ It’s pivotal,’’ he says. “It brings you greater credibility’’ as a company, as well as increased exposure.” If your company is making a strategic shift whether with its overall services or with a specific product - the first point of business is making sure everyone in the company knows exactly what that shift is.
GET THE WORD OUT• Create an effective website and post information about your new direction. • E-mail all of your customers about your transition. • Refer clients to your website for details. • Send news releases to media outlets about changes in your business. • Tell your customers to tell their friends about your business and the new services you are offering. “Just ask your customers to make referrals,” Goldstone notes. “It’s the easiest thing to do all you have to do is ask.’’ • Send out promotional materials and advertising literature with products that customers are picking up. Goldstone, for example, puts flyers in customers’ orders of photographs.

New technology is but a click away - OC Family

New technology is but a click away
By Craig Reem
An Irvine photo shop is the first Kodak retailer in the country to offer a new, high-speed commercial print scanner that archives old prints onto photo CDs.
While you wait.
“Nearly every family has shoeboxes full of photos,” says Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc. “We are talking billions, and hundreds of billions, of photos.”
Customers can have their photos, virtually any size, scanned onto a CD, uploaded onto a website to share a link with relatives and friends, as well as order prints, all within a few minutes.
Goldstone believes this is the natural evolution from film photography which created those shoeboxes of prints with no practical, quick way to get them scanned to digital photography, which typically stores photos on a CD for easy storage and quick access to possible order decisions.
Goldstone, a longtime Kodak customer and adviser, says the technology should be a boon for the company. He also believes this is a solution for archiving prized photos that could be lost in a natural disaster.
The scanner is capable of 150 pictures per minute.
“The convenience factor,” says Goldstone, “is overwhelming because any size photo - from tiny wallet pictures on onion-skin thin paper to 11x17-inch cardboard-thick enlargements are all scanned together, instantly.”
According to the Photo Marketing Association, Americans will order some 26 billion prints this year. Goldstone expects the scanners to be used by a wide array of businesses and agencies, such as attorneys and law enforcement that need to efficiently archive file photos.

Photo Opportunities - Chicago Tribune


By Alex L. GoldfaynSpecial to the TribunePublished November 26, 2005
ScanMyPhotos.com offers a surprisingly affordable picture digitalization service. Using a super-high-speed commercial Kodak scanner, the company turns printed family photos into digital pictures at rate of 150 per minute.
The cost: about $50 for 1,000 different pictures.
"We've scanned over 100,000 photos in the past three weeks," said Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc. of Irvine, Calif., the site's owner. "What's better than digitizing generations of your family's photos that are now being stored in shoe boxes."

Divorce: Deciding Who Keeps the Pictures is Easyand Inexpensive with Scanmyphotos.com - Yahoo! News


Divorce: Deciding Who Keeps the Pictures is Easy and Inexpensive with Scanmyphotos.com
(Irvine, CA) November 19, 2005 -- The only thing inexpensive and amiable about a marital split is who gets to keep the memories pictured on photographs. The in-laws, "out-laws" and everyone in the family can now easily get copies and archived digital CDs and DVDs of all their photos.
Scanmyphotos.com - a division of 30 Minute Photos Etc. - has created a national service for instantly scanning everyone's photographs.
Pay just $49.95 to instantly have up to 1,000 professionally scanned photos preserved on high resolution (300dpi, 1.5-2 MB) digital files. Reprints and duplicate photo enlargements printed on real Kodak-quality photographic paper is just as fast. While you wait.
Although this service is available to everyone with shoeboxes of generations of family photos, it is especially useful for people undergoing the daunting challenges of divorce where nothing seems easy, or inexpensive.
Over the past 15-years,
30 Minute Photos Etc. has handled all types of photographic work assignments. Often the most challenging are from divorced couples who want to each get copies of their once treasured memories. The pursuit of copying so many photos once was prohibitively expensive and emotionally straining. But, thanks to a new high-speed commercial scanner and software from the Eastman Kodak Company, super-fast, high quality scans are easy to produce. It is as simple as having the attorneys mail in the photos to ScanMyPhotos.com and have it back the next business day

ScanMyPhotos.com Archives Generations of Family Photos In Minutes

ScanMyPhotos.com Archive Generations of Family Photos In Minutes; Protecting Your Pictures on CDs and DVDs in Minutes
Irvine, CA (PRWEB) November 9, 2005 -- Do you have closets crammed with shoe boxes of photos spanning generations?
In what is the biggest news in the photo industry since the launch of digital photography, high speed digital scans are causing families to track down their old shoe boxes of photo memories. Even large companies are having ShoeboxReprints.com save all their photographic documents on digital CDs.
http://www.scanmyphotos.com/scanning.html and is powered by 30 Minute Photos Etc.
What just weeks ago took minutes for each scan now is too fast to track.
What weeks ago cost upwards of $5.00 per scan is today under 5 cents.
“It’s like magic, but once we show customers all their favorite photos on digital CDs and DVDs they also become fans,” explained company president Mitch Goldstone.
Goldstone is no stranger to the photo industry, as a well-known photo imaging industry leader, his more than 15-years of entrepreneurial experiences is what launched this new service. Along with partner Carl Berman, the owners of Irvine, CA-based 30 Minute Photos Etc., are announcing today the launch of their newest national photo service, ShoeboxReprints.com.
In minutes, people’s entire shoe boxes of stored photos are digitally preserved on (300 dpi, 1.5 - 2 MB) high resolution files. These giant files are perfect for ordering reprints and enlargement to share with the entire family this holiday season.
The Scanmyphotos.com website features all the information on how to prepare your photos. Then, in minutes their photo service digitally stores up to 500 images on a digital CD and up to 2,000 images on a DVD.
Imagine revisiting your history. Have your shoe boxes of photos converted from just memories into an entirely new way to share, print and archive pictures. "This is a `grand-slam' for the entire photo industry and especially the Eastman Kodak Company,” remarked Goldstone.
Nearly every household has shoe box-sized files full of family photos. Until now, there was no convenient way to save, share and reproduce billions of these treasures.
The recent hurricanes and natural disasters also reminded Americans to protect their prized photos, and this is the solution.
Rather than investing time and frustration to individually scan each photo, picture-takers -- from teens to young-adults and especially seniors -- can now bring their collection of treasured memories to 30 Minute Photos Etc. but first, visit its new website,
Scanmyphotos.com for complete info.
Once the images are scanned, consumers can also order real U.S. photo postage stamps through the website. Even out-of-town friends and relatives can then easily order their own Kodak-quality photos with instant, same-day fulfillment from 30minphotos.com.
The Kodak high-speed commercial print scanner and Kodak Capture Software is the engine behind this newest entrepreneurial persuit. It safely preserves high-resolution pictures in seconds –– 150 pictures per minute. "The convenience factor is overwhelming,” said Goldstone, because “any size photo -- from tiny wallet pictures on onionskin thin paper to 11x17 inch cardboard-thick enlargements are all scanned together, instantly."
30 Minute Photos Etc., the Irvine, CA-based retail photo center and 30minphotos.com, its online boutique photo service is among the first to offer this new technology. For consumers not located in Orange County, CA, convenient overnight courier service is available.
Did you know that only 3% of photographs are ever reproduced? According to the Photo Marketing Association, while 26-billion prints were made in 2005, there was no expedient way to quickly and inexpensively archive, share and print copies from original photos.
This is why Goldstone is so encouraged by Kodak’s family of high-speed production scanners and how he expects it to redefine the photo industry. It even passes his entrepreneurial 30-second "elevator pitch" test with 20-seconds to spare. This is where in 30-seconds you describe your business model to explain the concept, customer and catalyst for bringing both together.
Goldstone expects that Kodak will sell hundreds of thousands of these high-speed print scanners to a broad spectrum of new commercial customers, including to the photo industry and entirely new business channels; such as, attorneys and law enforcement agencies which need to efficiently archive their file photos. Photo labs too will create new revenue centers as they bring in more customers and order more Kodak-quality photographic paper and chemistry.
"Because the scanner is so efficient, there is no need to select which photos are your favorites," explained Goldstone. "We want people to conveniently preserve all their photos, even the silly pictures because those are part of their memories too. That is why we came up with the price of 1,000 scans from photos for just $49.95."
At 30 Minute Photos Etc., the charge to scan, digitally archive and upload an entire standard-sized shoe box of individually stacked photos is just $49.95 - or under 5-cents per photo and 49 cents for each Kodak Professional Endura matte finish photographic print at retail or discounted online. The entire order is completed within minutes. You can also choose to upload your images to the 30minphotos.com website to share every photo memory. This is where you can add music and turn the images into a slide show presentation.
Scanmyphotos.com and the 30minphotos.com website also provide easy ordering for real U.S. authorized postage stamps featuring your favorite photo, themed photo greeting cards and photo restoration services to fix pictures.
"Reprints were never a significant part of the business," explained Goldstone. "But, when you realize that billions of priceless family treasures are stored away in shoe boxes full of pictures, the challenge was how to get people to protect pictures from deteriorating and also make reprints for the entire family.”
30 Minute Photos Etc., founded in 1990, is regularly featured by the national media and ealier this year became the first class representative and lead plaintiff in the multi-billion dollar antitrust litigation against Visa, MasterCard, Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, Wachovia, Wells Fargo and other major banks over their credit card interchange price-fixing. More info is available on The Credit Card Interchange Report - WayTooHigh.com which Berman and Goldstone co-edit. Website:
http://www.waytoohigh.com/

Photo Breakthough - OC Metro


PHOTO BREAKTHROUGH
An Irvine photo shop is the first Kodak retailer in the country to offer a new, high-speed commercial print scanner that archives old prints onto photo CDs.
While you wait.
“ Nearly every family has shoeboxes full of photos,” says Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc. “We are talking hundreds of billions of photos.”
Customers can have their photos, virtually any size, scanned onto a CD, uploaded onto a website to share with relatives and friends, as well as order prints, all within a few minutes. Goldstone believes this is the natural evolution from film photography, which created those shoeboxes of prints, to digital photography, which typically stores photos on a CD for easy storage and quick access.
Goldstone, a longtime Kodak customer, says the technology should be a boon for the company. He also believes this is a solution for archiving prized photos that could be lost in a natural disaster.
The scanner is capable of 150 pictures per minute.
“ The convenience factor,” says Goldstone, “is overwhelming because any size photo from tiny wallet pictures on onion-skin thin paper to 11x17-inch, cardboard-thick enlargements can be scanned instantly.”
According to the Photo Marketing Association, Americans will order some 26 billion prints this year. Goldstone expects the scanners to be used by a wide array of businesses and agencies, such as attorneys and law enforcement, as well as individual customers.


30 Minute Photos Etc. scans hundreds of prints in seconds - PMA Newsline

30 Minute Photos Etc. scans hundreds of prints in seconds
Close your eyes and imagine being able to scan hundreds of your customers' prints in seconds. Think of the potential in sales, considering the billions of images in shoeboxes all over the world. Envision those reprint orders, the enlargements, the cross-country relatives who would suddenly be able to order copies of old family snapshots that have been stored under Aunt Lucy's bed for decades. Now open your eyes and pinch yourself, because this dream is coming true. In fact, Mitch Goldstone, president and CEO of 30 Minute Photos Etc., Irvine, Calif., is already doing it.
"I first heard about this a year ago from within Kodak because I'm so connected with the company. This passed my entrepreneurial elevator test with 20 seconds to spare. In 30 seconds, you have to explain what the product is, who the customer is and how you're going to get the two together. In 10 seconds, I understood this was a huge grand slam," Goldstone said to Newsline International. "This is a way to revisit the billions of photos people have saved in their shoeboxes -- generations of family pictures. It just makes enormous sense. This is a goldmine. It's something that is going to captivate the entire photo industry and will reinvigorate picture takers and families to open their shoeboxes of photos and bring them to retailers to have them scanned and archived."
"30 Minute Photos is using the Kodak i660 Scanner ($47,000 list) with Kodak Capture Software ($9,200 list)," said Mike McDougall, APR, director, Products & Services, Worldwide Public Relations for Kodak Digital & Film Imaging Systems. "As the world's top manufacturer of document scanners, Kodak offers a range of units, such as the i640 ($37,000 list) and the i620 ($27,000 list), plus other mid-range and entry-level production models."
The scanners were originally designed for scanning documents, such as checks. In fact, the Kodak website lists the scanners under the "Business and Government" category. Kodak, for now, isn't promoting the scanners for any other purpose.
"[We have] not commercialized [our] document scanners for photo specialty use, so we can't speculate on this particular application," McDougall said.
But, if Goldstone is right, that may change. "With hundreds of billions of treasured family photos waiting to be digitally transformed and preserved, I am convinced that Kodak has a blockbuster," Goldstone said.
It will be a blockbuster for photo retailers, too, he predicted. "Just last Friday, [we] scanned more than 10,000 individual photos. Prior to introducing Kodak's commercial scanner and Kodak Capture Software, we would typically process just a handful of photos each day," Goldstone said. "The charge was $5.00 for each scan and it would take about 90 seconds. Now we can do a thousand in just minutes."
30 Minute Photos Etc. is now offering to make high-res scans of a thousand prints of any size -- from 2-by-2 inches up to 11-by-17 inches -- and save them on CD or DVD for a mere $49.95.
"People can then instantly make Kodak-quality reprints and enlargements, and upload their new digital images to share with others. They can add music, turn images into a slide show and easily let friends around the country reminisce and order their own reprints, which we fulfill the same business day," he said.
"The convenience factor is overwhelming, because any size photo, from tiny wallet pictures on onionskin-thin paper to 11-by-17 cardboard-thick enlargements are all scanned together, instantly," Goldstone added.


Kodak Will Overshadow Apple’s iPod and Nano, Combined - Yahoo! News


"Kodak Will Overshadow Apple’s iPod and Nano, Combined," Reports Photo Industry Expert, Mitch Goldstone
Wed Oct 19, 3:00 AM ET
(PRWEB) - Irvine, CA (PRWEB) October 19, 2005 -- If one photo industry expert is right, the buzz on Kodak’s new high-speed commercial print scanners will become the biggest news since the launch of digital photography.ADVERTISEMENTWithin minutes, a shoe box full of photos will be converted from just memories into an entirely new way to share, print and archive pictures. "This is a `grandslam' for Kodak. It will even boost employee morale throughout the company and stimulate billions of dollars in new sales from scanner hardware / software and Kodak photographic consumable purchases," explained Mitch Goldstone, a well-known photo industry expert.But, that is just the beginning.
Goldstone thinks the Eastman Kodak Company will draw more attention than even Apple’s iPod and Nano, combined from what will become the most talked about new product of 2006.
While only a fraction of consumers are interested in storing thousands of songs and listening to an MP3 player, nearly every household has shoe boxes full of family photos. Until now, there was no convenient way to save, share and reproduce billions of these treasures.
The recent hurricanes and natural disasters reminded Americans to protect their prized photos, and this is the solution.
Rather than investing time and frustration to individually scan each photo, picture-takers - from teens to young-adults and especially seniors - will soon be able to bring their collection of treasured memories to a photo specialty retailer. In minutes they will get back a digital CD or DVD preserving all their images, plus order reprints, enlargements and get a website link to share their memories with the world. Out-of-town friends and relatives can then easily order their own Kodak-quality photos with instant, same-day fulfillment from 30minphotos.com.
The Kodak high-speed commercial print scanner and Kodak Capture Software is already available at 30 Minute Photos Etc. It safely preserves high-resolution pictures in seconds – 150 pictures per minute. "The convenience factor," said Goldstone, "is overwhelming because any size photo - from tiny wallet pictures on onionskin thin paper to 11x17 inch cardboard-thick enlargements are all scanned together, instantly."
30 Minute Photos Etc., the Irvine, CA-based retail photo center and 30minphotos.com, its online boutique photo service is among the first to offer this new technology. Consumers can overnight their entire collection of photo memories or locally bring in their stacks of pictures to 30 Minute Photos Etc.Did you know that only 3% of photographs are ever reproduced? According to the Photo Marketing Association, while 26-billion prints were made in 2005, there was no convenient and easy way to quickly and inexpensively archive, share and print copies from original photos.
This is why Goldstone is so encouraged that Kodak’s family of high-speed production scanners will redefine the photo industry. It even passes his entrepreneurial 30-second "elevator pitch" test with 20-seconds to spare. This is where in 30-seconds you describe your business model in the hope of explaining the concept, customer and catalyst for bringing both together.Goldstone expects that Kodak will sell hundreds of thousands of these high-speed print scanners to a broad spectrum of new commercial customers, including to the photo industry and entirely new business channels; such as, attorneys and law enforcement agencies which need to efficiently archive their file photos. Photo labs too will create new revenue centers as they bring in more customers and order more Kodak-quality photographic paper and chemistry.
"Because the scanner is so efficient, there is no need to sort and select which photos are your favorite," explains Goldstone. "We want people to conveniently preserve all their photos, even the silly pictures because those are part of their memories too."
At 30 Minute Photos Etc., the charge to scan, digitally archive and upload an entire standard-sized shoe box of individually stacked photos is just $49.95 - or about 3 cents per photo and 49 cents for each Kodak Professional Endura matte finish photographic print. The entire order is completed within minutes and the fee includes a free upload to the 30minphotos.com website to share every photo memory.
Customers can even add music and turn the images into a slide show presentation. The website also provides easy ordering for real U.S. authorized postage stamps featuring your favorite photo, themed photo greeting cards and photo restoration services to fix pictures.
" Reprints were never a significant part of the business," explained Goldstone. "But, when you realizes that billions of priceless family treasures are stored away in shoe boxes full of pictures, the challenge was how to get people to protect pictures from deteriorating and also make reprints for the entire family."
30 Minute Photos Etc., founded in 1990, is regularly featured by the national media and most recently became class representative and lead plaintiff in the multi-billion dollar antitrust litigation against Visa, MasterCard, Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, Wachovia, Wells Fargo and other major banks regarding their credit card interchange price-fixing; more info: http://www.WayTooHigh.com.

Mitch Goldstone Leads a Rebellion - USC Marshall


Mitch Goldstone Leads A Rebellion,This Time Against Credit Card Fees
By Robert Barnett
It pays to read your mail, as Mitchell Goldstone knows and Visa and MasterCard are finding out.
Goldstone, a 1985 graduate of USC Marshall School of Business, and his partner, Carl Berman, are the co-founders of 30 Minute Photos Etc. and its online sibling, 30minphotos.com which, as the names suggest, develop photographs from film and digitized files, respectively.
Goldstone has made lots of news over the years, but nothing like this summer when his company became the lead plaintiff in a class action antitrust suit against Visa, MasterCard and major banks. The story made the pages of the Wall Street Journal, Time magazine and the New York Times.
Filed in federal court in Connecticut in June 2005 with four other small and midsize businesses, the suit accuses the credit card companies and the banks that issue their cards of illegally fixing the interchange fees that merchants pay for credit card transactions. The credit card companies have defended their interchange fees, with MasterCard’s general counsel calling them “beneficial, efficient and pro-competitive” in a statement the giant credit card company made during a recent Federal Reserve hearing.
Controversy is nothing to new to Goldstone. He’s drawn to social and economic causes the way some people have hobbies, and thinks nothing of spending hours and time and money--and overlaying all that with entrepreneurial inventiveness--on an array of projects. In addition to the class action suit, he organized Operation Photo this year to collect digital cameras for families of soldiers deployed overseas. He promoted tsunami relief for the Red Cross on the company website. He ran for city council in Irvine, Ca.
But the lawsuit against the giant credit card companies represents the biggest, most formidable opponent that Goldstone has ever faced. If he and the other plaintiffs win, it could cost the credit card companies billions of dollars.
As with many of Goldstone’s past crusades, this one started almost by accident. In February, Goldstone and Berman received a notice in the mail that their interchange fees were being raised. “I usually throw them away,” Goldstone explained, ”but Carl brought it to my attention. When we started the business in 1990, there were a handful of interchange fees. Now there are nearly 100 different rates. And they’ve all been going up steadily. For example, the fee for debit cards has gone up 300% since 1999.”
Goldstone wrote to the senior management at Visa and MasterCard, asking them to rescind the increase. “Always start at the top,” Goldstone stresses. “It’s one of the greatest lessons I learned at Marshall.”
No answer. He followed up with a phone call to the two companies. Still no response. And that got the ball rolling.
Today, Goldstone and Berman write and edit the blog, “WayTooHigh.com,” posting articles and editorials on the interchange fees and arguing that the fees are a hidden tax on consumers since they become part of the cost of all goods and services purchased. Their retail rebellion appears to be spreading. Kroger and six other national retailers filed their own suit against Visa U.S.A., and charged it with anticompetitive practices.
Creating a national groundswell for a cause he believes in is nothing new to Goldstone. In fact, he enjoys it. “It makes it fun,” Goldstone insists, “knowing we’re doing something that is going to help somebody.” In a sense, he sees it as part of his job. “That’s what being an entrepreneur is all about,” as Goldstone sees it. “It’s not just about making money. It’s about doing something that’s good because that’s the ultimate scorecard.”
Organizing Operation Photo is a perfect example of how social and economic issues just seem to find Goldstone – and how he uses his entrepreneurial skills to identify and promote a solution.
“I got a phone call at 7:00 in the morning right after Christmas of last year from Jennifer Petersen, a former 30 Minute Photos Etc. employee who had left to become a full-time mom,” recalls Goldstone. “She’d had a dream the night before. What if her husband was serving in the military and he wasn’t able to see their daughter? Was there any way we could get people to donate cameras to give to military families? By 8:00, the business plan was already cemented and finalized.”
Within days, they had Operation Homefront onboard to coordinate distribution, secured pledges from Kodak and other digital camera manufacturers for hundreds of new cameras, set up a “Operation Photo” website with a link from the 30 Minute Photos Etc. homepage, the press had jumped on the story, and the first cameras were already flooding in.
By the time Operation Photo wrapped up on July 4, it had collected over $150,000 worth of cameras and distributed them to grateful and appreciative families in and around military bases all over the country. In fact, many of the photos of new babies and birthday parties now being shared overseas are being developed at 30 Minute Photos Etc., thanks to its military family discount.
Goldstone always wanted to be an entrepreneur. A New Yorker by birth, he applied to USC specifically so he could enroll in what is now USC Marshall’s Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.
Goldstone and Berman started 30 Minute Photos Etc. in 1990 on the premise that family photos were among our most treasured possessions. They separated themselves from the one-hour and overnight photo competition by beating them in turn-around time, delivering a higher quality photo, staying ahead with new technology, and building a client base that included Hollywood celebrities and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
In the late 1990s, 30 Minute Photos Etc. was blindsided by the digital revolution in photography. Suddenly customers weren’t bringing in rolls of film. They were printing them off their home computers. Business took a nosedive. Goldstone transformed the company into an online boutique photo service, creating a website for customers to format and edit their digital images, and with the click of their mouse, have high quality prints processed and shipped immediately to wherever they lived in the United States. He even put a 24-hour live support capability right on the website.
Still it was a struggle to rebuild the business. In 1997, Goldstone bought some local cable spots for the MTV Video Music Awards, only to discover that the show would be featuring rap singer Eminem performing live. Offended by the rapper’s lyrics, Goldstone bought up all the local commercial time for the awards program so that organizations including the Family Violence Prevention Fund, the Museum of Tolerance, and the Human Rights Campaign Fund could ran public service announcements educating viewers on violence against women, bigotry, and gay rights.
“That was extremely expensive,” Goldstone recalls. “This was our whole campaign to get younger adults excited about our business and to use it. Instead we ran those spots because we believed it was the right thing to do. As it turned out, we also got a lot of media coverage for the educational campaign and ourselves,” he continues. So what’s next for Mitch Goldstone? Wait and see. Visa and MasterCard may regret not answering their mail.
Robert Barnett, a freelance writer in Los Angeles, is a contributing editor of Marshall Magazine.

30 Minute Photos launches PhotoCentral online photo service - PMA Newsline

30 Minute Photos launches PhotoCentral online photo service
30 Minute Photos Etc., Irvine, Calif., USA, has been beta-testing a new online "PhotoCentral" Enhanced Photo Service. It was due to be completed on Oct. 1, but the company speeded up the launch, President Mitch Goldstone says. The service, which works with both Windows and Macintosh, is available now at www.30minphotos.com.
PhotoCentral features ActiveGallery, a Macromedia Flash-based album display system. Photos and albums are displayed with drop shadows, fades, and smooth movement, and music can also be added. New editing tools let users crop, zoom, pan, grayscale and antique online photos, and remove red eye. A new, free service called "WorkForce" automatically adjusts every picture to enhance color, contrast and brightness. The company also added photo blogging, where users can share photo albums with their distribution list, and add a running commentary - called "Yaks" - to any photo in an album.
PhotoCentral features an Address Book where users can define groups like "My Friends," "My Family," "Holidays," then share photos with everyone in that particular group.
The entire album is archived free for 30 days, during which users can view, print and share photos. For a minimal added fee, users can extend the storage period.

Kodak May See Bigger Changes - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle


Experts: Kodak may see bigger changes
Ben RandStaff writer
Much has gone right for Eastman Kodak Co. in the two years since it unveiled a plan for navigating the shift to digital imaging — but not everything. And that complex story means Kodak's transformation may yet have some surprises, analysts say.
Rochester's largest employer is battling trends that make it potentially vulnerable to strategic changes that are more profound than any seen over the past 24 months.
Experts say Kodak is at a point where it could be a candidate to be split into smaller but more focused pieces — or, in the alternative, be acquired by a larger company.
The factors driving these possibilities range from the ambitious and ongoing downsizing of the company's infrastructure for manufacturing film, chemicals and paper to accelerating declines in sales of cash-rich consumer film and shrinking profit margins.
Kodak's future will be top of mind this week. Top executives are scheduled to discuss the company's strategic direction with reporters, analysts and investors on Wednesday in New York City. Presidents of several of Kodak's key businesses are expected to provide updates.
Kodak is showing no signs of a dramatic change of course, despite persistent speculation on Wall Street. The company says it is committed to its current strategy, which involves investing in consumer digital photography, health care, commercial printing and other areas while aggressively shrinking its traditional chemical-based businesses.
The company also says it is confident it will have the financial resources to achieve long-term goals. "We are executing against the strategy," spokesman Gerard Meuchner said this week in response to questions, "and we have every intention of continuing to do so."
Most observers don't expect the company to announce a strategic departure like a sale or spin-off on Wednesday, but they say such moves are at least possible and have gained in probability over the past two years.
"They are almost backing themselves into a corner and may not have much of a choice," said Christopher Hayes, chief investment officer for Hayes-Fischer Capital Management Inc. of Rochester, which owns both Kodak stock and bonds.
The film business has over the past few years provided the company with ample capital to invest in digital imaging. If that stops happening, Hayes said, Kodak will have to look hard at several options.
"What they've been doing hasn't made sense for shareholders," Hayes said, noting that the current stock price is about where Kodak was trading two years ago. He adds: "If they don't turn it around, the stock price is going to tank, and then, if it gets cheap enough," it might attract corporate suitors or private equity investors.
While a strategic partner might make sense for Kodak, there is no obvious candidate, said Dennis Lohouse, founding partner of Bryce Capital Management of Pittsford.
As the film business produces less and less cash for the company, there is less and less reason to keep the company together in an integrated form, Lohouse said. "They've been redeploying cash into their digital business," he said, "but there will come a time when that is no longer an option."
Hewlett-Packard is the trendy candidate as a Kodak suitor, but most analysts and observers believe such a combination is a long shot, mostly because of ongoing issues facing HP. Other firms in the photo business are also unlikely, said Terry Faulkner, who retired several years ago as a top strategic adviser to Kodak executives.
Faulkner raises one intriguing potential area of interest: Companies in Asia looking for ways to expand globally. Recently, for instance, Chinese computer maker Lenovo purchased IBM Corp.'s personal computer business.
Faulkner notes that if he were still working for Kodak and if he believed that the company had winning product lines in fields such as health care and printing, he would analyze the pros and cons of selling Kodak's traditional consumer photography business. But, he notes wryly, "Those are big ifs there."
While the chances of a huge strategic departure are greater than two years ago, a professor at the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business at the University of Rochester said he thinks Kodak will remain in its current form.
The company is making progress building an extremely competitive commercial printing business, has surged to the top of the U.S. digital camera market and remains a mainstay in health imaging, said Larry Matteson, a former Kodak executive.
"If looked at in the cold light of reality, (an acquisition) doesn't make sense," Matteson said.Analysts say they also get the sense that Kodak is more interested in keeping its current portfolio intact. That doesn't mean something couldn't change, but "it's still fairly early in the Kodak turnaround story," said Jemelah Leddy, an analyst with McAdams Wright Ragen in Seattle.
Though unlikely, a photo retailer and longtime Kodak cheerleader says he thinks that strategic and tactical changes at Kodak are almost imperative.Mitch Goldstone of 30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine, Calif., said he has growing questions about the company's approach to consumer photography.
As an example, he cites recent additions to Kodak's online photofinishing service, known as Kodak EasyShare Gallery. Kodak is now offering premium memberships. One package, for $49.99 a year, offers unlimited prints at 10 cents a piece, below the regular price of 15 cents.
Kodak should be looking for ways to charge more for printing pictures by adding value, not less, Goldstone says.He objects to Kodak competing online with loyal retailers like himself and others. Goldstone has been one of Kodak's most outspoken advocates.
"My contention," he said, "is that memories are worth much more than 10 cents."

FedEx competing with small businesses - San Francisco Chronicle

Blow-up: Snapshots made to poster-size prints are becoming more popular - The New York Times

e-tailing On the Campaign Trail

e-tailing On the Campaign Trail
2/1/2005 - Mitch Goldstone
With the elections behind us, let's pause to reflect on just how smart all the candidates were. That's right, smart. Where else can you get other people to rally behind your campaign with the passion, money and fervor that entrepreneurs always hope to garner to promote their own businesses? As a local Orange County, CA, political leader and as an entrepreneur, I've found a way to inspire the same mania that circles a political campaign to help promote your business. In the past, "buy-one-get-one-free" offers were the photo industry's promotional pattern. Today we must be much smarter. We need to get the attention of area businesses and have them know you as the civic leader in your community.
But how can you do that? Start running your business like a political campaign. If you study the dynamics of a political campaign, you'll quickly recognize that there are many parallels to your business. The question is, how do you get others to follow and get involved with your campaign to grow your business? Here's one recent project I launched that anyone can replicate and expand upon.
The project: Help your local municipality increase sales taxes, not through added fees, but through increasing purchases within your city. In Irvine, CA, nearly half of all revenues received by the city are derived from regular sales tax income. When more people buy products in the city, the revenues to the city increase as well. Like most municipalities, the auto center is one of the largest sales tax generators.
The project I am working on is called "Keep It in Irvine." When you purchase an automobile at the Irvine Auto Center, you'll receive $5,000 in vouchers for free services and products from Irvine businesses. The voucher encompasses 100 Irvine companies contributing a minimum of $100 gift certificates with no minimum purchase necessary. Examples of participating companies include restaurants, cleaners, supermarkets, gas stations, car washes, photo labs, tire centers, auto repair centers, bookstores, optometrists and theaters.
Make sure there are no gimmicks. The value must be real and without any purchase requirements. The value to the businesses is building up goodwill and bringing in new, highly qualified (they just bought a car!) people into their establishments. To benefit the business community, you should require that all participants be a member of your local chamber of commerce.
Managing Your Campaign
As the founder of the local program, you should promote the service and manage the campaign. That way, you're in charge, and those 100 area businesses get to personally know you and bring their vouchers to your business—always make sure that you are the designated drop-off place. Remind the companies that the real cost of attracting just one new lifetime customer is much greater than this $100 investment. You become the catalyst between the auto center, the business community and the chamber of commerce.
To promote your own Keep It Local campaign, write a press release and share it with the local paper and the chamber of commerce, auto center marketing managers and city hall. Then go on the attack. Just like politicians use the airwaves to garner free publicity, you now have a cause that will rally the entire community behind you. Show up and address the city council and the onlooking cable TV audience with your campaign to benefit the city. You're a superstar; the city is served. Consumers from distant cities will flock to buy cars in your city, because this is really one of the only ways to specialize and differentiate one auto dealer from another. A BMW is a BMW, but one purchased in Irvine gets you an extra $5,000 in substantial and real benefits.
Case Study
In my case, we'll provide in $100 online gift certificates toward ordering photos from digital cameras and camera phones. The recipient will log onto www.30minphotos.com and enter a prearranged promo code. They can share the code with others, and because our same-day service is national, anyone can use it.
This marketing strategy plays off political campaigns but also fashions your business as a civic leader. Beyond the benevolence and goodwill, it's always important to get involved and help your community. A by-product of my firm's year-round championing of civic programs was the recent Orange County Philanthropy Awards. Because we already provide the photographic 5 x 7 enlargements for many local events with our compliments, they sought us out for a recent award program. One hundred and seven organizations were nominated, and each group was instructed to visit 30 Minute Photos Etc. to receive a complimentary publicity portrait headshot for the program. Imagine 107 of the most important groups in your city being told to visit your store!
We captured all the portraits for the awards, and we also captured everyone's e-mails, too. Why the e-mails? We sent each group a personalized link to view their portraits online. Over 20 separate high-quality portrait shots were captured for every attendee. Therefore, each received a link to over 20 unique publicity portraits of themselves. Pressing one button enabled them to order enlargements and share with others. Of course, we love the share feature because it gets family members across the nation to become familiar with 30minphotos.com.
Setting Yourself Apart
Another easy way to differentiate your services and promote your holiday photo greeting cards is to have your lab photo technicians choose a favorite photo within each order and automatically select a holiday photo greeting card. Make sure the card is nonreligious—you don't want to offend anyone. If there are several great shots within a film or digital order, make several samples.
Show the customer how special year-round cards are by typing a sales message on the card. We use Aperion greeting card templates (
http://www.aperioninc.com/), which are preloaded onto our Kodak DLS software. This makes for a seamless method to instantly add an extra print to the order. In addition to all the added perks we randomly include within completed print-at-retail and online orders—from lottery tickets (for CA residents) to Starbucks gift cards, chocolate and candy—these holiday card samples are so appreciated and lead to enhanced sales.
But don't let it stop on January 1. Whenever your lab technicians see images of new baby photos, graduations, weddings or other special occasions, have them include a similarly themed photo greeting card within the order. These types of marketing and promotional innovations are essential for growing your business.
Mitch Goldstone,

30minphotos.com, First National Online Photo Service to Launch Round-the-clock WebServices Facility - Yahoo! News

30minphotos.com, First National Online Photo Service to Launch Round-the-clock WebServices Facility
Irvine, CA (PRWEB) December 14, 2004 -- To dramatically improve turnaround for ordering and receiving Kodak-quality photos from your digital cameras, 30 Minute Photos Etc. launches its WebServices facility which is now operational 24-hours a day, seven-days a week -- including on Christmas Day and New Years. Fifteen-years ago, when the company was founded, it would take days to achieve this type of service from traditional film.Put 30 Minute Photos Etc. to the test. Visit www.30minphotos.com and place your order before 6:10 P.M. (Eastern Time). Choose FedEx delivery. Your Kodak-quality photos, enlargements and holiday greeting cards will be on your desk – across the nation – the next business day! Or you can choose to have the company directly send your photos to your relatives and friends. Imagine taking pictures at your holiday party or family gathering today and receive real 100% Kodak photographs that fast!Order Kodak-Quality Photos in Seconds: Photographers can complete their entire order in just seconds using the 30minphotos.com PrintWizard software. There is no sign-up, registration or other barriers to impede the speed of easily ordering photos. Tip: log onto www.30minphotos.com and click on the animated purple wizard hat to access the free software. The PrintWizard icon will also be added to your desktop for future orders. Choose "print all" and you are done. Or, you can custom crop, zoom-in, get rid of red-eye and other special feature using all the enhanced photo tools. The same, fast service is available for ordering Kodak-quality photo greeting cards in minutes.Now Receive your Completed Order the Next Business Day: Your completed photo order will be received the next business day, due to our new round-the-clock WebServices facility. Choose FedEx delivery and your holiday photos will be at your door or on your desk the next business day when your order is received weekdays prior to 6:10PM (Eastern Time). Note: All your Kodak-quality orders are completed within moments and ready for local (Orange County, CA) pickup, or mailed back the same day. You choose Standard, Priority or FedEx delivery.The timing of the launch of this WebServices facility coincides with Duncan Martell"s report in Reuters which identified that "when families and friends get together for the holidays this year, many more of them will use a digital camera to record those memories." One of the leading market research firm"s, IDC, projects that half of all consumer photos printed will be from digital cameras in 2006; this year only 36 percent of consumer prints made will be digital.Making prints at home can cost about $1.25 for a single 4x6 print, when you add in the cost of the paper, printer, supplies. That says nothing about the frustration and time it takes if you have a single mistake. But, kids can quickly interrupt this equation when they unbeknown-to-you start making 8x10 high resolution enlargements with your supplies. The continuing declines in the cost of flash-memory cards means that consumers are taking more high-quality images than ever and according to Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc., "they are printing more too. Each month our volume of online orders from across the nation grows exponentially -- we even just added an infrastructure investment of $200,000 with the purchase of the very first unit of Noritsu"s new 3213-DLS digital lab. Fifteen-years ago, it would take upwards of a week to complete a single holiday photo card order. Today it takes seconds," said Goldstone. "Our modern holiday photo card graphics a nd one-minute ordering turns picture-takers into hobbyists to help enhance the experience. With our all-new online photo greeting card templates, the family can choose and design their own custom photo greeting and announcement photo cards ... and it"s at their home the next day!"

Taking a Note from the Music Industry

30minphotos.com [ScanMyPhotos.com] raises money for victims of Russian school tragedy


Photo Marketing Association International (
http://www.pmai.org/ 9-16-04):
President of 30 Minutes Photo Etc. and 30minphotos.com raises money for victims of Russian school tragedy Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minutes Photo Etc., Irvine, Calif., USA, viewed first-hand images from the recent tragedy at a school in Beslan, Russia and was inspired to raise money to help the victim's families."One of the benefits of owning a national online photo service and retail photo center is that our lab technicians interact with our customers and hear their stories behind the photos they take," Goldstone says. "One customer just returning from a Russian sightseeing tour vacation shocked me. They had actual photos from the city of Beslan in Russia, where the deadly siege of that school, taken hostage by Chechen terrorists, occurred on Sept 3."Goldstone made an appeal to the Irvine City Council to spearhead a campaign to help the children and families injured, orphaned and affected as a result of the tragedy. During the Sept 18 opening ceremonies of Irvine's multi-million dollar new swim stadium and aquatics complex Goldstone wants the city to pause and reflect on the significance of what occurred in Beslan and to use that moment as an opportunity to gather together as a community, and represent all communities and cities across the nation, to help the families in Russia.Goldstone, chairman of Irvine's Community Services Commission, wants the ceremony to include a pause to observe the tragedy in Beslan, because, he explains "it's a tragedy for the entire world too."The scope of the tragedy is larger than the Columbine shootings or Oklahoma City bombing combined.Goldstone spoke with the Russian Embassy in Washington, D.C., USA, and arranged for monetary contributions be made via its English online websites:
http://www.russianembassy.org/ and http://www.moscowhelp.org/

Creating the Complete Retail Experience

Athens Olympic Games to Get Support from U.S. Business Leaders

Photography Companies Try a New Approach - The New York Times

By CLAUDIA H. DEUTSCH
It was inevitable. And now, it is time.
For several years, photography companies and retailers alike have watched desperately as sales of their favorite cash cow, camera film, were plowed under by the merciless juggernaut of film-free digital photography. The companies kept hoping that sales of in-store services to turn electronic images into prints would pick up the slack. They never did.
Why not? Because, consumer research showed, a lot of amateur photographers did not realize that it was as easy to drop off a digital camera's memory card for processing as it was to drop off a roll of film. And those who did were often loath to give up control of an expensive card holding hundreds of nonreplicable photographic memories. The purveyors of photo printing services have certainly tried to get the word out.
Eastman Kodak and Fuji have put plenty of signs in stores, promoting retail printing services. And a few retailers - Walgreen's is one - have run commercials advertising them as well. Still, the concept has just not caught on.
The industry's latest answer to the conundrum is to pepper stores with self-service kiosks where consumers can edit photos and make their own prints from digital memory cards. Tens of thousands of kiosks are now in drugstores and discount stores. So, with such critical mass finally achieved, the companies are rolling out the advertising cannons.
The CVS drugstore chain, which has in the past dabbled in radio ads and direct mail to drum up digital print business, has begun to run national television ads for its kiosks. Eastman Kodak just started a campaign to do the same. And Fuji has a big rollout scheduled to begin in the fall.
"In a typical household, dad takes the most pictures, but mom wants the prints, and she just doesn't want to baby-sit an inkjet printer,'' said Carl E. Gustin Jr., Kodak's chief marketing officer. "So if digital photography and printing is going to be a truly mass phenomenon, then self-service retail has to be a big part of it.''
While the companies are going after the same result - more consumers making more prints at more kiosks - they are using very different means to reach it. CVS, which is devoting half of its 2004 television advertising budget to promoting digital photography and printing, is aiming to make people laugh by highlighting funny ways that digital prints can be used.
Kodak, which is spending twice as much to advertise kiosks this year as it did last year, has devised ads that sympathize with the frustration felt in getting those prints in the first place.
For example, in one CVS spot, a young boy takes lots of digital close-ups of his dad, who is leaving for a business trip. He rushes to a CVS kiosk, makes prints, and uses them to build a full-length photographic likeness of his dad reclining on the couch. In another, a woman, dressed in a no-nonsense suit and also about to leave on a trip, takes funny pictures of herself, makes prints at a CVS kiosk, and attaches them to fattening foods in the refrigerator. When her paunchy husband goes to the fridge for a nosh, he is treated to an array of shots of her looking disapproving (caption: "oink, oink"), pointing to a pig, and the like.
Lisa Badeau, a senior vice president for Hill Holiday, which created the ads, says they are aimed particularly at women, who not only make up the bulk of CVS's customer base, but who are also generally the "family memory keepers" - that is, the photo guardians. "We're trying to create a warm, emotional relationship between the store and those consumers,'' she said.
For CVS, more is at stake than sales of prints. Grant Pill, director of photography and imaging for CVS, notes that about 13 percent of the people who come in for digital processing are new customers. Since drugstores are prime locales for impulse buying, that could mean welcome traffic in the stores' nonphotographic aisles, too.
"We already know that 80 percent of our customers are women,'' Mr. Pill said. "And now the research shows that 80 percent of the people making prints are women, too, and that they really want to feel in control of the prints that they make.''
Kodak is casting a wider net. Its ad starts with a panoply of people- young and old, male and female, black and white and Asian - professing love for their digital cameras. Then it pans to one young man crying plaintively, "where are my pictures?'' The answer, of course, is readily at hand - if he would only go to his local self-service kiosk and make them.
"Our research shows that even people who love their digital cameras are still frustrated about how to get prints,'' said Nicola Bell, worldwide executive group director at Ogilvy & Mather, which is handling Kodak's campaign. "We have to position the kiosks as friendly little machines that guarantee good long-lived pictures.''
Fuji Photo Film USA, which is spurning television in favor of drive-time radio, Internet ads and print, is casting a wider net still. Gael Lundeen, group vice president for marketing at the Fujifilm photo imaging division, said Fuji was more than doubling its marketing and advertising spending this year, to "educate consumers about the ease of getting a truly great print from their digital cameras'' through many printing options, including home printing, Internet uploads, in-store processing as well as self-service kiosks. "A kiosk is an important piece of the puzzle, but it's still just one piece,'' Ms. Lundeen said.
It's a quickly changing piece at that. For example, late last month, Mr. Pill and entourage were playing host to various people from magazines and newspapers at a CVS store on Lexington Avenue in Manhattan, demonstrating a new Kodak kiosk that can make prints from digital files that were transmitted wirelessly from cellphone cameras. Kodak intends to set up 20 wireless kiosks at the Olympics in Athens - the first time the company has set up a center at an Olympics site that serves amateurs as well as professional photographers.
The pace of opening self-service kiosks is so heady that even owners of photo specialty stores - who, logic would dictate, would bridle at any suggestion that consumers do anything self-service - have stopped fighting the trend and are welcoming it instead.
"I was extremely concerned at first that Kiosk ads would draw business away from us,'' said Mitchell B. Goldstone, who owns
30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine, Calif. "But then I realized that, in the long run, anything that educates people about the things they can do with digital pictures is going to help our sales as well.''

The Kiosk Continuum

15 Steps to Reinvent Your Business

Action steps to gain business now

Action steps to gain business now
Can’t wait for 2006? What can a retailer do now to build digital printing business? Mitch Goldstone, co-owner of Irvine, Calif.-based 30 Minute Photos Etc., has seen the digital print business explode at his single location. He shared his secrets with Photo Marketing for growing the digital print business, which he believes is one of the biggest opportunities in the industry.
Business sailed along pretty well at the Irvine retailer since its founding in 1990 by Goldstone and his partner, Carl Berman. Goldstone, in particular, gained notoriety as an industry spokesperson, garnering quotes and interviews in national newspapers and magazines.
Business turned sour a couple years ago, with his store caught in the “double whammy” of the economic downturn and the transition to digital. Most frustrating for Goldstone was the fact a quick fix wasn’t available. There wasn’t any equipment the store could buy that would fix a stuttering economy.
Staying in the game was the response of 30 Minute Photo Etc. “We waited for consumer habits to catch up,” explains Goldstone. “We kept doubling down and kept increasing our investment, which was very challenging. It wasn’t just a month or two months or three months. In hindsight, it was actually quite scary. It was very disconcerting, but we believed in the future of digital imaging.”
Today, digital printing is driving print volumes back up. Goldstone shares his action plan for weathering it; but, be warned, not all these tactics may be transferable. For one thing, your store’s product mix is probably very different than Goldstone’s: Sales at 30 Minute Photos Etc. are nearly 95 percent photo-processing and portraiture-related items.
“Online presence is critical so you can compete with the big boys,” declares Goldstone. “Rather than being a local retailer with a customer base of a 3- to 5-mile radius, we have orders coming in, every day, from all across the nation.”
Accounts at 30 Minute Photos Etc. (www.30minphotos.com) now include Fortune 500 businesses. At first, these corporations might have been concerned about the store’s size, but no more.
“Their concern is to have a wonderful service and incredible quality,” Goldstone says. “They are not concerned about size. Lots of them like working with a small business. It’s part of their mandate, in many cases.”
Goldstone is also well known in the Irvine area for his community leadership. Reasonable charity requests are not turned down, and he is visibly active on various boards and committees. This included a run for the IrvineCity Council.
Building business for professional photographers is also a key element. “We work with professional photographers to color profile their work, to make sure their monitors match our equipment,” he explains. “We train photographers to use their digital cameras, because we want them to go out and take the very best pictures.
“One of our professional photographers moved to Georgia, which is typically a bad thing; but we conditioned him to use our online service. He’ll get the prints within two or three days.
“We don’t lose customers when they move. We used to. Now, when someone says they’re moving to another state, I like that; because we get an opportunity to get a whole customer.”
As a specialty retailer, Goldstone thinks it’s important to be distinguished from the mass-market competition. Branding is very important. And, while Goldstone lists Eastman Kodak Co., IBM Corp., and Noritsu America Corp. as important partners, the 30 Minute Photos Etc. brand identity is foremost.
This philosophy led the retailer to develop his own version of the kiosk. Using a basic, less than $1,000 PC and the store’s online service provider, Goldstone built his own store-specific kiosk. For output, the kiosk is connected to a digital minilab.
Goldstone’s reasoning was, if he offered the same self-service kiosk as a mass retailer, he was essentially training consumers to go elsewhere. Instead, he wants consumers to learn the 30 Minute Photos Etc. interface; the backend is driven by Photogize.
“We want the customer to go home and have the same experience as in the store,” he says. “We wanted the self-service kiosk, which was designed to have seamless workflow, and included all the latest technology, like Bluetooth.” This can be inexpensive as well: A USB Bluetooth adaptor can cost as little as $39.
“Make sure the entire system is seamless, with the photo kiosk linked seamlessly to the website,” he says.
Goldstone has many other maxims, including the mandate, “If film comes in, it goes out digital.” Sales staff is trained to sell CDs with every roll of film.
Going digital has also meant adapting to an “open 24 hours” mentality. This on-demand approach is crucial to obtain and to retain corporate accounts.
The trials of the last two years have taught Goldstone, Berman, and staff well, and prepared 30 Minute Photos Etc. for a strong future industry.
“I would venture to say these last few years remind us of being at a craps table and having all my money on the table, and backing it up, waiting for the right roll,” he says. “Not only did we get the right roll, and the bet has come in, we’re showing there is a big change in the entire industry. This is going to be the hot, new business for people.”

Advice to Help Kodak Compete in the New World of Digital Photography - The New York Times

E-tailing, Are you ready?

Kodak 'must change' before digital world passes it by - International Herald Tribune

Kodak 'must change' before digital world passes it by
By CLAUDIA H. DEUTSCH Published: April 19, 2004
NY Times
Is Eastman Kodak doing too little, too late? Last July, after years of hoping that maybe Kodak's once-stellar film business could survive the digital juggernaut, its chairman, Daniel Carp, gave in. "We now know that digital adoption accounts for the great majority of our sales decline in the United States," he told analysts.
Since that time, Kodak, which earned $238 million on revenue of $13.32 billion last year, has slashed jobs, cut its once-sacrosanct dividend and deployed much of the money it freed to strengthen its digital portfolio. Kodak has introduced digital cameras and supplanted Fuji as the fourth-ranked seller, after Sony, Canon and Olympus, of digital cameras worldwide, according to IDC, a market research firm. It has recruited respected digital experts like Antonio Perez from Hewlett-Packard and Bernard Masson from Lexmark, and charged them with creating a fast, digitally oriented culture. Kodak has also licensed digital camera technology to competitors Sanyo and Olympus and acquired companies that could fit in missing pieces of technology or markets, like Ofoto, an online photo processing operation. But investors, many still angry about the dividend cut, remain unimpressed. Kodak's stock, which traded as high as $76 in 1999, has been mired in the mid-$20s. According to Thomson Financial, six of the nine analysts following Kodak rate it a sell.
Early this month, Kodak, which is based in Rochester, New York, was dropped from the Dow Jones industrial average, pretty much branding it as a company whose glory days had gone.
Can Kodak, which invented the digital camera in the mid-1970s, become a giant in this newly digital world? Experts say yes, but that it will take a lot of work. Here is what some Kodak-watchers suggest the company do.Eugene Fram, marketing professor, Rochester Institute of Technology's College of Business: "Kodak must realize it is finally simple to print pictures at home. I'm getting beautiful pictures of my grandchildren with a $200 HP printer and whatever paper is on sale. I don't need their online archive services, either.
" So Kodak has to comb each division for products to divest, and for products to develop into core businesses, not just here but in China and Europe as well. It must come to grips with the international market. Affluent people in China may well leapfrog right over film to digital, which means film sales will decline a lot quicker than Kodak expects.
" Kodak must bring in even more people with digital experience and promote them into key positions over the heads of others. Yes, that will cause consternation at Kodak, which is still a hierarchical, conservative company with too many management layers. But Kodak has to be more nimble and productive, and the new people coming in must change the conservative culture."
Mitchell Goldstone, owner, 30 Minute Photos Etc., a photo specialty store in Irvine, California:
" Kodak must establish a better link between Ofoto and photo retailers. If customers who upload their digital pictures to Ofoto were directed to order prints from photo specialty stores who use Kodak products, then Kodak could sell a lot more chemicals and paper. And Kodak should already be positioning Ofoto as the center of a network that will link users of camera phones to photo retailers." I would recommend that Kodak change its name from Eastman Kodak Co. to Kodak Communications, to get it past the perception that it just sells film. Kodak plans to spend millions of dollars at the Summer Olympics, and it should use that opportunity to demonstrate everything they are doing, and can do."
William Johnson Jr., mayor, Rochester, New York:
"Kodak has got to make it clear that the days of constant job cuts are ending. Too many people in this community are saying, 'Be prepared for a Rochester without Kodak.' Kodak had more than 60,000 employees here in 1973. It's already down to about 21,000, and they have announced more cuts. For now, I can live with 18,000 jobs in Rochester, even 15,000. But Kodak must make it absolutely clear that this number is the floor, that they are finally lean enough to start this turnaround they keep talking about and to build back to significant employment here." Most importantly, the brains of the operation, the R&D, should continue to be in Rochester."
Ulysses Yannas, photography analyst, Buckman, Buckman Reid:
" Kodak has to outsource more of its manufacturing. It is simply not a low-cost producer of equipment. In the digital world, it will make money in consumables like paper and in services to hospitals and to retailers. Kodak should be talking up the economics of self-service photo kiosks to every mass retailer in sight. "Kodak should stick with its strategy for moving beyond photography. It has wonderful new X-ray film technologies, it is using principles of nanotechnology to create better inks and inkjet papers, and it is well positioned to capture market share in commercial printing, a huge field that is converting from offset to digital."
Anthony Maramarco, managing director, David L. Babson Co., an investment firm in Cambridge, Massachusetts:
" We bought Kodak stock a few months ago. Kodak has patents in every piece of equipment going out the door, and their ink and paper technology really is rocket science. People began to recognize the breadth and depth of their technology when they started attracting people like Antonio Perez. Now they must be sure not to rein those people in.
" Kodak is right to focus on medical and consumer photography; the technologies overlap. And they shouldn't de-emphasize film too much. In developing nations, that yellow box of film will be around for a while. It's a dying business, but it's still a cash cow, so they should stick with it."

Defining Longevity - OC Metro

Defining Longevity How two executives have remained on top.
By Steve Churm - OC Metro
Headlines that seem to appear almost daily in the business press tell stories of corporate wrongdoing by executives bent on cutting corners. It has fertilized the public mindset to believe that most CEOs are pondering - or engaging in - some sort of foul behavior; that these corporate captains are blurring the moral and ethical lines when doing business. Michael Stephens, the cover subject this issue (see page 36), does not fit that stereotype. In fact, the president and CEO of Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian runs his business about as straight and true as anyone you will ever meet. In an era when the life span of top executives often is measured in months, not years or decades, Stephens has defied convention by serving as the top gun at regionally acclaimed Hoag Hospital since the mid-1970s. Tustin-based writer Paul Sterman spent considerable time with the likable Stephens and his co-workers to find out what makes this leader tick. More importantly, Sterman was assigned to find out how Stephens has weathered nearly three decades of upheaval and change in the medical industry to remain in charge of the hospital by the bay in Newport. In many ways, Stephens has been as successful as corporate celebrity Donald Trump-with one very large exception. Trump loves the camera, while Stephens wants nothing to do with the spotlight. He is a refreshing island of modesty in the sea of egos that washes across the business pages almost every morning. For so many, it's about the publicity and personal notoriety, but Stephens doesn't want to make headlines unless it's about his staff or about improving the quality of care that patients receive at Hoag Hospital. It's a good story about a good man. Mitchell Goldstone is another impressive business executive who is the subject of writer Gary Goldhammer's
entrepreneur profile on page 52. Goldstone doesn't run a hospital with a $462-million-a-year operating budget and a staff of 4,500 physicians and employees like Stephens. The scale of his business is very different. Still, like Stephens, he brings an ethic and a creativity that marks him as a winner. Goldstone and his business partner, Carl Berman, co-own a single photo-processing store in Irvine, 30 Minute Photos Etc. They are good businessmen who have delivered superior service and quality at their Jamboree Boulevard location from the day they opened in 1990. Goldstone has always joked that no matter how many mistakes they made, the business simply grew because of their deep involvement in the community and concern for customer satisfaction. But the sudden onslaught of the digital age threw them a curve and, 18 months ago, Goldstone and Berman were in trouble. Business began to evaporate faster than ice cubes on the curb in August as the explosion in digital cameras dried up the need for film developing. A dogged entrepreneur with the confidence that would impress even Trump, Goldstone solved the digital riddle by opening an online storefront that allows people anywhere to submit their digital photos and get them professional processed the same day. Initially, most people with digital cameras were printing their own pictures at home. But that is changing. By 2006 some experts believe that 60 percent of all digital photographs will be printed by people like Goldstone. The key is that Goldstone has made it easy to crop or adjust or brighten the resolution online. In a recent magazine interview, the very public Trump said one of his seven keys to success was passion for your career. He said he has never seen anyone succeed who didn't love what they were doing. It's clear that Stephens and Goldstone would be welcome at Trump's lunch table. OCM
Click here for more information about Mitchell Goldstone.

Back In Focus - OC Metro






Kodak's Critical Moment




Kodak's Critical Moment
By
Rex Moore (TMF Orangeblood)October 22, 2003
This is turning out be one of the most memorable days in the 122-year history of Eastman Kodak (NYSE: EK). The floundering photo giant -- trying to develop a clear focus and strategy -- is being pulled in different directions by those with a financial interest in its well-being.To begin with, the company this morning reported third-quarter earnings from continuing operations of $0.88 per share, down 19% from the same period last year. Revenue, excluding the favorable impact of foreign currency exchange, fell 1%.But another in a long line of disappointing quarters is only part of the news. Today, a group of disgruntled shareholders is meeting in New York to discuss ways to nudge Kodak away from its plan to realign the company around digital technology. The group, led by the Providence Capital investment firm, reportedly is comprised of about 60 institutional investors owning 25% of the stock.Kodak recently slashed its dividend for the first time ever in order to help finance the shift from its core film business to digital imaging. But the digital market is highly competitive, and the group is not convinced Kodak can compete effectively as a latecomer.Meanwhile, some photo retailers are offering up a different point of view. Mitch Goldstone, owner of Irvine, Calif.-based 30 Minute Photos Etc., is urging Kodak "not to be distracted from its strategy and vision for expanding its reach towards digital imaging." The developer of the Teacup Index says the new print-at-retail photo kiosks and online services "will make my business bigger, [and] it will also translate into rewarding growth for Kodak as well."If my experience with a Kodak digital camera is any indication, the company is still struggling with its new focus: I've had a tech support issue go unanswered for nearly a month, even though an automated email promised I would "be receiving a personalized response from the Kodak Support Team within 24 hours."This is clearly a critical period for the company as it tries to please the different factions of shareholders, retailers, and customers.


Digital outpacing film, says Chicago Tribune article



Digital outpacing film, says Chicago Tribune article
In a year with few technology breakthroughs, the digital imaging industry has introduced a myriad of new photo options for consumers, explains an article special to the Chicago Tribune. Plummeting prices, improved quality and convenience have combined to help digital cameras outsell film cameras in the U.S. for the first time this year, according to industry analysts."There's no need for the average consumer to stay with film," said Paul Worthington, senior analyst for consumer imaging at San Mateo, Calif.-based Future Image Inc."Your average photographer can buy an easy-to-use, affordable digital camera that meets or exceeds the quality provided by film cameras," he said. "For $200."Indeed, 3-megapixel cameras sporting 3x optical zoom will sell for about $200 this holiday season. Last year a digital camera with similar features cost at least twice that price.A variety of advantages over traditional film cameras make digital products attractive. These include the ability to view photographs immediately, the low cost of shooting images and the ability to share them electronically, says the article.But while Americans have started the switch to digital, the article says most still are not familiar with the photo printing options currently making waves among industry experts. And at an average rate of around 35 cents per print and falling, retail printing has become a realistic alternative to home printing.Rick Goins, 24, purchased his 3-megapixel Kodak camera in May and used it for two months before deciding to upload images to 30 Minute Photos Etc., Irvine, Calif., USA, for development."When I got them four days later, I thought `Wow, these are amazing,'" the Pekin, Ill., resident said. In addition, the process was easy, he said. Consumers react this way because the photographs from photofinishers look like photographs developed from film. "That's the best part," said 30 Minute Photos Etc. owner Mitch Goldstone. Digital photofinishing will account for 86 percent of his total revenue in 2003, up from just 4 percent last year.""The output is identical to film," Goldstone said. Digital images "are created using the same printer, the same chemistry and the same paper."Currently, 78 percent of digital camera users create images on a home printer and only 7 percent use a retail location like Wolf Camera or Wal-Mart, according to InfoTrends Research Group. But that's still a 133 percent increase in retail printing over last year."Retail printing can make your life a whole lot easier," said Kirk Sidley, president of Picture Perfect N&S Photos, a Portland, Ore.-based photo developer. "You can upload your images one time and have them printed and mailed to you, mom and grandma--all at once and on the same day."Despite digital photography's rapid growth, however, few say film cameras will disappear. Eventually, "film as a photographic medium is going be a niche product. But it will not go extinct," Worthington said. To read the complete Chicago Tribune article,
click here.


Ultimate `Kodak Moment' to Occur From Athens Summer Games in 2004



Ultimate `Kodak Moment' to Occur From Athens Summer Games in 2004, Reports Photo Industry Leader
IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 8, 2003--Next Summer, as cyclists race around the Acropolis, site of the Parthenon and other ancient monuments, the 2004 Athens Summer Olympic Games will also triumph the fun and drama through photography. Something new will greet spectators, explains Mitch Goldstone, president of 30minphotos.com.With national publications like "Business Week" (Dec 15, 2003) proclaiming "Athens promises to be one of the most photogenic Olympics," the business of photography will usher in ingenious new technologies to bring the world together. "As one the world's most watched sporting events," Goldstone explains, "the Olympic's boasts the ultimate opportunity to distribute memorable 'Kodak moments' to people around the globe. Digital cameras and Internet access will offer instant turnaround for ordering and sending real Kodak photos back home."30minphotos.com, the national online photo service is providing sports enthusiasts visiting Greece with an easy way to order photos transmitted from their digital camera images. Spectators can order Kodak photographs, processed and mailed the very same weekday. Imagine the thrill as families and friends open their mail to see real Kodak photos -- not low-resolution email attachments -- from abroad.In 2004, anyone can virtually participate in the Summer Games. They will share lasting memories that touch the heart from the Games and enjoy speedy results with unrelieved service. "30minphotos.com is already geared up to provide free photo sharing and instant weekday printing of Kodak photos ordered online and at a fraction of the cost and hassle of at-home, inkjet printing," said Goldstone.Thanks to Kodak (NYSE:EK) and IBM (NYSE:IBM) technology, the quality of photos processed by 30minphotos.com during the Games will look identical to photographs from film. Founded in 1990, 30 Minute Photos Etc., the parent company of 30minphotos.com recently received national media attention, including an article in 'The Chicago Tribune' (Nov 15).("30 Minute Photos Etc.", "Kodak," "IBM," "Business Week," "The Chicago Tribune," "2004 Athens Summer Olympic Games" are registered trademarks of their respective companies / organizations. Only 30 Minute Photos Etc. is responsible for this release).


Kodak and the Teacup Index


Kodak and the Teacup Index
Fri Jul 25, 1:33 PM ET By Rex Moore
A couple of days ago I wrote a story about Eastman Kodak's (NYSE: EK -News ) disappointing earnings, and said I had my doubts about CEO Daniel Carp's promise of new products "with a potential for growth that is far beyond that of our more mature operations." Shortly after, I received a great email from a photo shop owner who disagreed with my assessment and introduced me to the "Disneyland Teacup Index."
Mitch Goldstone is president of 30 Minute Photos Etc. in Irvine, Calif. His proximity to the Magic Kingdom, he says, gives him a great perspective on the state of the economy in general and Kodak in particular. Mitch told me that during tough economic times he develops fewer pictures of the famous Teacup ride and other Disney attractions, and more pictures when times are good. "For the first time in two years," he wrote, "I've seen a substantial increase in those and [other] vacation shots."
While not perfect, the Teacup Index can be a useful gauge not only of film and photo purchases, but also of business at Disneyland and the state of the travel and entertainment industries.
Another example of this type of in-the-trenches research can be found in Thornton O'glove's Quality of Earnings . In the early 1930s the famous short-seller Bernard Smith decided to visit a manufacturing company whose stock was defying Depression-era odds and setting new highs on a regular basis. Management would not grant "Sell 'Em Ben" an audience, however, so he walked around to the back of the plant and saw that only one of the company's five smokestacks was actually producing smoke. Taking this as a sign that production had been cut back severely, Smith shorted the stock -- and cashed in when it crumbled several weeks later.
Of course, it's hardly ever that easy in practice. Smith was lucky the plant hadn't shut down the smokestacks for cleaning instead of a lack of business, just as the Teacup Index may be moving up for a reason other than an economic recovery.
Still, these reports from the trenches must be respected, so don't neglect conducting investigations like these yourself when you're researching companies. They can be valuable tools in your investing arsenal.
©1995-2003 The Motley Fool. All rights reserved



Going Digital? - OC Register



Monday, May 26, 2003
Going digital Sales of the filmless cameras are expected to outpace those of film cameras this year. Are you ready?
By TAMARA CHUANGThe Orange County Register
I, like thousands of other people, received a digital camera last Christmas. My pictures turned out blurry, and I blamed the camera, a Nikon CoolPix 3500 with a trendy swivel lid. But reviewers were gushing. So, I made it my quest to figure out what to look for in a digital camera and how to take a great picture. I tested four sub-$500 cameras from Nikon, Canon, Olympus and Toshiba, chosen because of price, pixel size and a manual configuration feature for amateurs who plan to one day move beyond automatic. Through it all, I realized one thing: If you don't know how to take a good picture, it doesn't matter what camera you're using. First things first According to InfoTrends Research Group, 20 percent of U.S. households have digital cameras, and sales this year are expected to outpace sales of film cameras for the first time. No wonder. There's no need to buy film or mess with loading it into a camera. You get instant gratification because you can see the photo right after you take it – and delete it if you don't like it. And you can easily burn photos to a CD or e-mail them to grandma. Features to look for: • Speed. One frustration is digital cameras don't seem to take pictures fast enough. They, apparently, need time to figure out white balance, exposure and focus. "Lag time has been a problem with digital cameras, and it has not been overcome," said Fred Lerner, president of Irvine-based Ritz Interactive, an online retailer of cameras and accessories at RitzCamera.com. For those wanting a camera to document their child's soccer games, Lerner recommends two things: Look for fast recycling time (the time a camera needs to set up each new shot) and fast shutter speed (the gizmo inside the camera that opens and closes to let light in.) Lower-priced cameras take a few seconds between each shot, while higher-end cameras, such as Canon's $1,500 EOS 10D, offer 3 frames per second. For sports photography, shutter speeds of at least 1/1000 of a second are recommended. Or look for "burst" or "continuous" modes for taking multiple pictures simultaneously. • Pixels. The more pixels a camera has, the more details it produces. It's the difference between seeing someone's eyes and seeing individual eyelashes. Megapixel refers to the tiny dots that form the picture. Today's "sweet spot" is the 3-million-pixels-per-inch range, and the average price is $350, according to InfoTrends Research. But if you're used to printing out 4-by-6-inch photos, you'll be content with a 3-MP camera, says Ron White, author of "Click! The No Nonsense Guide to Digital Cameras."The more pixels, the more you can enlarge a photo and still have it look great. Otherwise, a grainy, slightly out-of-focus photo results because pixels are stretching to fill the space. To get detail comparable to a 35-mm camera, however, you theoretically need an 11-MP camera, White says. • Zoom is a nice feature. A three-times optical zoom is equivalent to a zoom of 37 mm to 111 mm in a 35-mm film camera. Anything more will likely bump the camera's price above $500, although Olympus is pushing its new Camedia C-740, a camera with 10-times optical zoom, for $499. DON'T, experts say, buy a camera because of its digital zoom feature. Digital zoom doesn't add any quality to the photo but merely enlarges the pixels that already exist. Tweaking with software Don't like those crow's-feet around the eyes? Is the background lighting too bright? No problem. Free software included with most digital cameras helps you easily fix beady, red eyes, sharpen lines and brighten up photos with the click of the mouse. Most cameras, photo printers and scanners include digital-editing software. But one standout is Adobe's consumer version of its Photoshop software. The $99 Photoshop Elements 2.0 may not offer everything that the $600 professional version does, but my husband, an artist, had a hard time figuring out differences. You can "despeckle" an old photo to remove scratches. Or do digital plastic surgery by narrowing a nose or tinting lips a deeper shade of rose.
Copyright 2003
The Orange County Register


Seek Help vs. DIY Printing - OC Register



Monday, May 26, 2003
Seek help, DIY printing
Seek help Three years ago, Mitch Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos in Irvine, added a digital-photo center to his photo store. About 1 percent of sales were digital-related that year. Today, nearly every order has some digital aspect – from film users opting for a CD archive of prints to customers uploading images to the store's Web site, www.30minphotos.com, to pick up prints during their lunch hour. "Everyone wanted to become a hobbyist and set up digital darkrooms in their bedrooms," Goldstone said. "But by round two or three, they got frustrated printing out their own pictures. So now, they go online or bring in their memory cards." Stores like Wal-Mart and Target now offer digital-photo kiosks for customers who want to do almost everything themselves. And online sites, such as www.Shutterfly.com or Kodak's www.Ofoto.com, offer online uploading and snail-mail delivery of prints. Experts recommend that you go to a professional developer for prints you want to keep forever. Ink-jet photos suffer from non-archival inks and paper. DIY printing A picture printed on regular paper is adequate for many people – until you see how professional your own photos can look on glossy photo paper and a special photo printer. On a test of the $249 Canon i950 printer, I printed an 8-by-10-inch close-up of an Indian paintbrush wildflower shot with a 3.2-megapixel Nikon Coolpix. I can't imagine how it could be clearer. It captured an insect's antenna, plus cobwebs on the petals. But ink-jet ink, as most know, is pricey. Canon's answer was to separate the colors of ink into individual cartridges, as opposed to bundling colors in one cartridge. While Canon's solution is handy if you are, for example, an ocean photographer and use more blue than red and yellow, you end up paying $12 per cartridge. One plus for the i950: After printing out about 100 large photos, ink levels were more than half full. For paper, expect to pay 25 cents to $1 per sheet of glossy paper, or 10 cents for matte paper, which offers the same quality look, sans shine. The benefit, of course, is that you can do all your development at home. You can edit and print photos instantly. Unless you run out of ink in the middle of the night. Tips from the pros Auto focus by gently pressing shutter button down halfway. Take multiple photos of the same image. There's a better chance you'll get a magnificent photo, plus you can always delete the ones you don't like. Read the manual. I hate doing that, but five months into digital-camera ownership, I discovered that my camera has a "continuous shooting" mode to take multiple pictures. Don't depend on your shaky hands. If you're taking wildlife pictures or family portraits, use a tripod. Look for backgrounds that aren't distracting. Don't take photos facing the sun or use a flash. Backup your photo collection by copying images from camera to computer and then to CD for long-term storage. If you're on the go, one way to store photos is on devices such as I/O Magic's "Digital Photo Library" or Vosonic's X-Drive, which combine a 20GB mini-hard drive with a 6-in-1 memory-card reader.
Copyright 2003
The Orange County Register


Photo Shops Find the Bright Side of Digital Technology - The New York Times




April 14, 2003Photo Shops Find the Bright Side of Digital Technology
By CLAUDIA H. DEUTSCH
A couple of years ago, Oregon Photo Supply looked to be a goner. Its sales peaked at $1.3 million in the late 90's. Then, digital photography soared as the economy plunged. Sales sank so low that Oregon Photo closed four of its five stores.
But now things at the last store, just outside Portland, are looking way, way up. In fact, Wayne Welch, Oregon's president, says sales may hit $400,000 this year - within striking distance of the store's $449,000 sales peak in 1998. Why? Oregon Photo, which now uses the name Oregon Photo and Digital, installed new equipment, revamped its Web site and rewrote its advertising, all to get users of digital cameras to come in for their prints. Finally, customers are doing just that.
"Digital photography and the Internet have opened possibilities we never dreamed of," Mr. Welch said.
Apparently, the Cassandras were wrong: digital photography has not made photo retailing obsolete. Granted, people still print very few of the digital pictures they take - and most of those, they print at home. But photo retailers are finding their niche. The clunkiness of much photo-related software, the slowness of photo printers, and the chancy quality of homemade prints have discouraged people from printing photos at home. So has the high cost of paper and ink: print-it-yourselfers spend upwards of $1 a print - two or three times what stores charge.
Also, women are snapping a lot more digital pictures these days. That has retailers clapping, as studies show that women are more likely than men to want lots of prints and less likely to make those prints themselves.
"For women, photography is about memories, not technology, and that is definitely good for us," said Judy Strauss-Sansone, vice president for photo and consumables for the CVS Corporation.
The photo-shop industry sorely needs an uptick. Sales of film, developing and processing have been flat at best, while people have been buying digital cameras in computer stores.
"No question, every store's lost revenues because of digital," said Edward Y. Lee, a photography analyst at Lyra Research. Many independent stores have been forced to close, said Ulysses A. Yannas, an analyst with Buckman, Buckman & Reid. "It's just getting more difficult to compete," he said.
The retailers that toughed it out still rely heavily on sales of double sets of prints from rolls of film. But now they can also burn those images on CD's, archive them on Web sites or print them on T-shirts or greeting cards.
And now, with digital developing labs and interactive Web sites, they have learned to turn digitally captured images into prints, CD's and other lucrative products.
"Before, someone dropped off a roll of film, you gave them prints, that was it," said Mitchell Goldstone, president of 30 Minute Photos Etc., a photo specialty store in Irvine, Calif. "Now we do our version of `Would you like fries or a shake with that?' "
The upshot is that while no store is boasting huge profits from digital photography yet, few still worry that its ascendance will drive them out of business. "Finally, it is a good time to be a photo retailer," said John Larish, president of Jonrel Imaging Consultants in Rochester.
Well - not entirely. The retailers now occupy a chaotic world in which the lines of competition between vendors, wholesalers, mom-and-pop stores and megastores have blurred. Some 1,800 of the 2,500 Wal-Mart stores with photo centers now process digital photos, and the rest will be equipped to do so by November. Wal-Mart customers can also upload their digital images to www.walmart.com and pick up the prints at the nearest Wal-Mart store.
Kodak sells digital labs to retailers, and operates Web sites for several. But it also owns Ofoto, an online service that makes prints and stores electronic photos, at prices that often undercut those offered by its retail customers.
Similarly, District Photo, a mail-order photo processor in Beltsville, Md., used to get most of its revenues from handling processing for other retailers. Now it operates Web sites under the brands Snapfish, York and Clark, on which consumers can store electronic pictures, set up online albums and order prints, CD's and gifts, like calendars or cookie tins imprinted with their photos. In December - traditionally a big time for taking pictures but a slow one for printing them - nearly 40 percent of District Photo's revenues came from gifts.
"Anyone who says that digital wasn't bad news is lying, but at least it is a growing business," said Neil D. Cohen, District Photo's president.
Retailers themselves are tackling what has to date been the worst impediment to growth: letting the world know what they offer.
"Hewlett and Epson have done a wonderful job of telling consumers that they can make photos at home, while our industry has done an extremely poor job of letting them know that we can make pictures from digital files," said Mr. Welch, of Oregon Photo.
The manufacturers, who want retailers to buy their digital developing equipment as well as their ink and paper for making prints, are helping out. Kodak, for one, is spending nearly $30 million in Atlanta to educate consumers about the ease with which local retailers can convert their digital images to prints.
"A lot of people are printing photographs at home because they don't know there is a retail alternative," said Jude Rake, Kodak's chief operating officer for consumer imaging in the United States and Canada.
Fuji Photo Film U.S.A. is tackling that problem, too. Visitors to its Web site can enter their ZIP codes and get driving directions to the nearest retailer that has Fuji equipment for making digital prints. This summer, Fuji plans to set up links that let customers upload photos directly from the Fuji site to the nearest retailer, then pick up the pictures the same day. And, they could split the order up among different stores.
"That way, customers can pick up one set of prints at their local Duane Reade, even while their mom in California picks up a duplicate set at her local Ritz Camera," said Manny Almeida, a vice president for commercial imaging at Fuji.
The retailers themselves have grown savvier about marketing. For example, 30 Minute Photos Etc. now markets a digital printing service to families of troops who are overseas and who presumably would want to swap photos. Mr. Goldstone also has gotten permission from I.B.M., Canon and some other large companies to market directly to their employees via their intranets.
Using consumer receptivity to digital bargains as a guide, such efforts are working. In December, Fuji Photofilm USA offered $2 coupons in newspapers, redeemable at retail stores that use Fuji equipment to make prints from digital cameras.
"The redemption rate killed our budget," Mr. Almeida said. He quickly added, "It was just great."
Copyright 2003
The New York Times Company




Kodak's Digital Dilemma



Kodak's Digital DilemmaThe growth is in minilabs--where Big Yellow lags behind
MARCH 24, 2003THE CORPORATION
Daniel A. Carp knows better than anyone how exasperating it can be to print digital photos at home. The chairman and CEO of Eastman Kodak Co. (EK ) missed almost the entire third quarter of this year's Super Bowl because he was sitting in front of a computer, printing pictures for his guests instead of watching the game. Carp's verdict on home processing: "It's a miserable experience." Slow and cumbersome as it is, most people still print their digital photos on their PCs. That won't always be the case, though. Industry experts see more and more consumers dropping digital cards off at a store counter, as they now do with film, because it's familiar and easier than home printing. You might think that would give Kodak a golden opportunity to stake out digital leadership -- after all, for years about the only processing option camera buffs had was to leave film to be processed by Kodak labs. But after a costly misstep, Kodak badly lags in the crucial war for customers' dollars at America's drugstores and discount chains. Unless Kodak can get more of its equipment into retail venues, the film giant risks falling further behind in the consumer end of digital photography. Kodak's status as an iconic brand name could well depend on how it recovers. The company spent years developing digital cameras, only to wind up third in the U.S. market behind Sony (SNE ) and Olympus (OLYOY ) with a 12% share, says research firm IDC. It continues to suffer from the shift toward digital -- Kodak's U.S. film sales fell 5% in the fourth quarter, and its overall sales fell 3% for the year, to $12.8 billion. Profits rose to $770 million, from $76 million in 2001, when they included $659 million of restructuring costs. If Kodak is to get back on the growth track, it needs to identify the killer app -- or apps -- in digital processing. To be sure, there are other ways to get digital prints: at self-serve kiosks, through online services, or, as Carp tried, at home. And Kodak has a hand in all of them. Right now, 82% of all digital camera users print with a home PC, says Photo Marketing Association International. Only 7% use retail outlets. But that's almost certainly going to change. As digital photography goes mainstream, consumers increasingly will want somebody else to make their prints. Lyra Research Inc., an imaging research outfit in Newtonville, Mass., projects a $7 billion market for digital processing by 2005, with 32% of that done at retail. Says Edward Lee, a Lyra senior analyst: "Over the next two years, as the soccer parents move to digital imaging, they will look to retail for their photos. They don't want to mess with them." Unfortunately, Kodak is playing catch-up in the most crucial retail segment, minilabs. These are the $100,000 computer and processing machines, located behind store counters, that can spit out 2,000 4x6-inch prints per hour. Rival Fuji Photo Film Co. (FUJIY ), with more than 5,000 labs in place, already has 60% of the U.S. digital minilab market, including deals to put machines in 2,500 Wal-Mart (WMT ) and about 800 Walgreen (WAG ) outlets. Those two chains handle about 40% of the U.S. photo-processing market. Kodak has only about 100 digital minilabs in service now. Why so few? Its hopes were tethered to a 1997 alliance with German imaging company Gretag, which would make the hardware while Kodak provided software. But Gretag filed for bankruptcy in 2002, and Kodak landed a new partner, Japan's Noritsu Koki Co. "We've only begun our collaboration with Noritsu," says Daniel P. Palumbo, president of consumer imaging at Kodak. Despite the slow start, Kodak projects that it will sell 1,000 minilabs this year. Expansion may be tough. With some of the biggest customers in the Fuji camp, Kodak has to line up smaller chains, mom-and-pop stores, and non-traditional retailers. But it believes that growth in the marketplace will offset that difficulty. Only 21% of households now own digital cameras. The segment of retail processing Kodak does dominate -- self-service kiosks -- is one that several analysts think will decline. Since 1994, Kodak has installed 23,000 kiosks at U.S. locations such as CVS (CVS ) and Target (TGT ). It wants to install even more. The earliest models enlarged film prints. Today, about 80% of them make digital prints too. Consumers, however, can be intimidated by kiosks. Helen Kaplan, a 48-year-old Atlanta attorney, usually drops off her memory card at her local Eckerd (JCP ) drugstore and gets her prints two days later. She used a kiosk only once, when she had to have pictures that night. The machines, she says, "seem too complicated and time-consuming." They will likely lose out to countertop models linked to in-store minilabs. Users would choose their own specs, but get minilab speed. Kodak does have other digital irons in the fire. In 2001, it bought online processor Ofoto Inc. for $58 million. Ofoto's 6.5 million members can store photos there or request prints, which Ofoto mails to them. But while Ofoto is the market leader, Kodak says it has yet to make money. And online photo transfers can take forever without a high-speed Internet connection. As for home printing, Kodak will introduce a $199 printer in May that links directly to its EasyShare digital camera. But it won't make digital printing any cheaper. Kodak figures prints will cost 50 cents to 75 cents a pop -- at least 75% more than at Wal-Mart. Meanwhile, rival Canon Inc. (CAJ ) sells a $99 machine that does both general purpose and photo prints. Analysts see the least upside in those markets. No matter. Carp still thinks Kodak should place wagers in every segment. "I think our best bet is the sum of the parts," he says. Let's hope he does better than he did at the Super Bowl. Carp bet on the losing Oakland Raiders and had to treat his friends to doughnuts. If he loses this wager, the cost to Kodak will be a lot more painful. By Faith Keenan in Rochester, N.Y., with Cathy Schottenstein in Atlanta Copyright 2000-2003, by The McGraw-Hill Companies Inc. All rights reserved.


Digital makes memories easier to capture and share--but harder to hold on to




Science & Technology 3/24/03
Are photos finished? Digital makes memories easier to capture and share--but harder to hold on to
By David LaGesse
Snapshooters tend to become evangelists once they've gone digital. Renee Reid, for example, abandoned film a couple of years ago for a digital camera and started printing all her pictures at home. She so loved the new ease of capturing her young Mississippi family's visual history that she bought a camera last Christmas for her mother. Her brother, smitten with his own digicam, also bought one for Mom. Reid's father, watching the two kids happily shoot without film, was getting ready to buy a third. In the end–after some awkward scenes and gift returns–digital had made another convert. "Mom got her digital camera and has had a ball," says Reid. Digital cameras are no longer an exotic toy for early adopters and computer buffs. Already, 1 in every 5 American homes has a digital camera, and the number could approach 1 in 3 by year's end as sales accelerate--digital models, though more expensive than film cameras, are now outselling them.
The digital revolution goes far beyond capturing images on electronic sensors instead of a film's chemical emulsion. Digital means entirely new ways of keeping and sharing photos, and that is changing the business of photography and the role of photos in family ties and friendships. By freeing users from having to buy and process Kodak or Fujifilm rolls, digital means consumers take more pictures but print fewer of them, threatening the bread-and-butter income of the nation's film manufacturers and myriad corner drugstores and one-hour photo labs. Instead of passing around prints and pasting them into albums, digital converts send their pictures by E-mail or even cellphone and display them onscreen, adding throw-away frivolity to the once elevated role of photos in our personal histories.
But this revolution, like most of its kin, has its costs. It has left all too many Americans with hard drives stuffed with family memories in digital form. They may have sent the files to a Web site or to relatives, but there the images remain, locked in the ethereal zeroes and ones of computer code. It's "digital constipation," says Douglas Rea, who teaches photography at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Maybe 14 percent of digital pics get printed, compared with virtually all film frames, says the Photo Marketing Association. Those that make it to paper mostly do so at home, and almost entirely by way of inkjet printers. They produce vivid colors that thrill consumers, but the delight often proves short lived as tones begin fading or discoloring in a few years, or even months.
And there's the biggest downside of the digital revolution: It threatens the longevity of photos. Taking and sharing digital images can be a snap, but keeping them requires some know-how. Unless digital's new devotees learn how to organize, preserve, and print their images, photography experts worry, a generation's worth of memories could be lost.
Fade to black. For a full century, since Eastman Kodak popularized photography in the early 1900s with its $1 Brownie camera, it was film that captured family stories, filling albums with glimpses of cherished moments that were passed lap to lap at reunions and parties. Now there's a headlong rush to entrust memories to a technology whose purveyors are often new to photography. Sure, photo stalwarts like Kodak and Nikon offer digital cameras, but computers and computer printers shoulder the job of turning the electronic impressions into images. The result is new control and at-home convenience, but at the cost of some old certainties. "We're squeezing what is a generational change into three or four years," says Kevin Gilbert, a professional photographer who teaches digital photography. "It's no wonder people are feeling a little anxious."
Rightly so--just ask Phil Connor, who developed a sick pit in his stomach when his computer's hardware started wheezing a few weeks ago. The amateur photographer scrambled to make repairs, but he lost almost half his shots from the past three years. "All I know is that I'd never lost a photo that I'd taken with a film camera," the Ontario, Canada, resident says with obvious dismay. It's a reaction familiar to emergency workers, who say that after loved ones or pets, disaster victims usually mourn the loss of their irreplaceable photos the most. Reality bytes. Few people think about preserving their photos when they buy a digital camera--the immediacy of snapping and sharing is so appealing. Mickie Jobe had two kids home the other day because of inclement weather in North Texas. The grandparents all got shots of 6-year-old Isaac sliding down a neighbor's driveway in a laundry basket. "He was still outside sliding when I was already inside E-mailing the photos," Jobe says.
This rapid proliferation of images may be changing the very role of snapshots. Before digital, some researchers argued that the carefully chosen, often posed photos in albums lied, casting a utopian vision of life as nothing but vacations, parties, and smiles. Sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, who studied French families in the 1950s, came to call the home camera the "festive technology." Anthropologist Richard Chalfen of Tulane University found it played the same role for Americans in the 1980s.
Maybe reality is now creeping in. Some surveys say the typical family shoots three times as many frames with digital as it did with film. That means relatively fewer poses and more candid moments (although delete buttons can keep the least flattering moments from ever leaving the camera). Says Chalfen: "We've never seen so much of each other--never been able to hold on to so much visually."
So how can you keep all those memories from evaporating? One safeguard is to back up your hard drive by burning the images onto a CD. Experts suggest using brand-name, write-once CDs, which could last for a decade or a century-- but in any case probably longer than the less-hardy rewritable disks. Yet doubts nag even those who routinely store their digital pictures on disk. Geoff Jackson, a computer consultant in Florida, wants his grandchildren 30 years hence to have CDs of his photo collection. But no one knows for sure how the disks will hold up--and whether players in 2033 will be able to read them. "I do worry that CDs will go the way of the big floppy disk," Jackson says. Even if CDs are still around, today's file formats may not be. Computer and electronics companies aren't known for ensuring backward compatibility. There's no guarantee how long they'll support today's JPEG, the compression format in which most consumer cameras save images. Industry execs say they feel a personal responsibility to keep current formats alive. "We're talking people's memories now," says Jim Malcolm, a manager of Sony's photo products. "I've got five or six years of my kids' life in JPEG files, and a strong vested interest in mak- ing sure they can be used decades from now." Still, the U.S. Library of Congress is spending $100 million on a search for ways to archive, convert, and otherwise safeguard its prized digital data against technological glitches and obsolescence. For mere consumers, there's one sure answer, and it's a familiar one, says Mark Roosa, the library's preservation director. Make a durable print, and protect it as you would any prized photograph.
With film, that advice is easy to follow--just have your photos preserved on good-quality paper. With digital, it takes some expertise, especially if you print at home. It was around 1994 that affordable home printers were first able to spit out small enough ink drops for realistic photos. Problem was, their inks and papers were meant for corporate graphs or children's book reports. These days, prints from just about any late-model printer can look as good as a traditional photo. But their durability is less certain. Inkjet prints "were never designed for display, much less for the years that we display our photos," says Henry Wilhelm, a folksy Iowa researcher who has spearheaded interest in "image permanence." Wilhelm accelerates the slow ravages of time to test photo durability. With racks of intense lamps and hot ovens, he concocts a harsh version of a photo's life pinned to a refrigerator door or stored in an attic.
Paper trail. A onetime photo chronicler of civil rights and Vietnam War demonstrations, Wilhelm first gained notoriety, at least among professional photographers, for taking on giant Kodak over what he said were shoddy papers used in 1960s and 1970s color prints. Any family with photos from that era has sad examples of the fading problem. Kodak responded with improved papers and chemicals, and the issue itself faded away. Kodak also helped fund an alternative to Wilhelm's outfit, the Image Permanence Institute in Rochester, N.Y., another independent lab.
Inkjet print quality has become a new target for Wilhelm and the permanence institute. Traditional prints last well partly because their fragile color dyes are imbedded in gelatin layers that are plastered to good-quality paper, which protects the dyes from sunlight and air. Also, the prints are processed with chemicals that are matched to the paper type. With inkjets, in contrast, the pigments are often exposed, and consumers get to choose their own inks and paper, sometimes mixing varieties not designed to work together. Prints from early machines faded in months, and the longevity scientists took aim. Their results prodded the manufacturers into action. Wilhelm says Hewlett-Packard and Epson have notably improved how long their prints can last. His tests show that their printers can generate images that actually outlast a traditional print. Unfortunately, he also found that such impressive results require papers and inks recommended by the printer maker rather than cheaper knockoffs. Third-party supplies often are designed to work with any printer, forcing compromises. Makers of third-party papers also struggle to keep pace with changing ink formulas. "It's tough enough for HP to keep up, and we have armies of chemists," says Nils Miller, a chemist who helps design supplies for the company.
For archival prints, consider getting one of the newer six-ink printers, which are best at reproducing subtle tones, and print at the highest resolution. Then display the results under glass or store them in acid-free albums at moderate temperatures--"where you sleep," says one conservator, and certainly not in a hot attic or moist basement. Other tips can be found at Wilhelm's site, www.wilhelm-research.com, where he promises to display longevity data on dozens of printer/ink/paper combinations in the coming months.
Alas, even the best advice is no guarantee of a lasting print, because both inkjet technology and the science of accelerated tests are young. "We can't be sure there won't be a surprising new mechanism of failure," says James Reilly, director of the Image Permanence Institute. Wilhelm, for example, was blindsided after Epson, backed by his tests, first touted new, "archival" inkjet systems in 2000. Within weeks, buyers complained of an unsightly orange tone emerging in prints. The culprit turned out to be atmospheric ozone, a problem in some places like Los Angeles, which attacked prints left exposed to the air. "It caught the entire industry off guard," Wilhelm says. Epson adjusted paper formulas to lessen the problem but still recommends that any prints made with dye-based inks, typical for consumer printers, be displayed under glass. The safest option by far is the oldest, say Reilly and others: Entrust your favorite digital photos to standard silver-halide printing. So far, that hasn't been so easy. The labs that produce traditional silver-based prints were set up only to handle film, and techs often look blankly at the memory cards that hold digital photos. But that is starting to change.
Earlier this month, a photo industry show in Las Vegas was packed with equipment designed to draw digital camera users into photo labs to make traditional prints. Store owners were inspecting the displays closely. "Digital is scary," says Dan Novis, owner of Gaslamp Photo in San Diego. Digital is cutting into processing volumes, and rebuilding them requires new minilabs--those big contraptions behind drugstore counters that process film; digital versions start at around $100,000, several times the cost of a conventional setup.
Novis has bought two digital minilabs, but nationwide, fewer than 20 percent of shops are ready for electronic images. Still, the single largest film processor, Wal-Mart, is rushing digital minilabs to its stores. Prices for printing from computer files tend to be competitive with film--in the range of 25 to 50 cents for a 4-by-6-inch print. And unlike film processing, digital printing services let a user choose which frames to print and edit out flaws like red eye. Often the digital-ready photo labs have a front-end kiosk that lets consumers download their photos and do basic editing themselves.
If the Las Vegas floor was any indication, those kiosks could soon be popping up on cruise ships and at amusement parks and malls--just about anywhere an ATM might go. One outfit, in fact, calls its version the APM, for automated photo machine. Some would spit out photos on the spot; others would send the files over the Internet to a central lab, for prints that would be mailed later. That kind of online service is already available from your home computer. Sites including www.shutterfly.com, www.snapfish.com, and www.ofoto.com make it easy to upload images and order prints, which are delivered to your door--but the process typically takes a week or so. (Note: also available on our own website www.30minphotos.com, with as fast as same day turn-around)
Photos by wire. Worried that the market for their paper and chemicals is drying up, photo companies are offering still other options. Nobody has more at stake than Kodak, where company execs concede that digital could cut sales by 5 percent this year. The firm is pushing a system that would let consumers send images over the Internet--from a kiosk or a home computer--to be printed at a photo shop anywhere in the country. A family visiting, say, Disney World could upload photos to be output at a store near their Tennessee house, or at the drugstore near Grandma's in Arizona. Fuji is setting up its own Internet system.
So far, only a tiny fraction of digital camera users--4 percent or so--have tapped stores or the Internet for prints. But getting consumers back to the labs may prove easier as digital cameras go more mainstream and women get more involved in what's been a gadget-driven, male-dominated activity. "A busy mom doesn't have time to edit and print at home," says Michelle Slaughter, a market analyst with InfoTrends. "They just want a decent print and aren't of the mindset to do it themselves."
That applies to Alisha Pitchford. Although she has gone completely digital in photographing her Tucson family, she still wants prints to paste in scrapbooks, and she is relying on photo labs to make them. Her last order was for 500 prints at the local Sam's Club, a warehouse store owned by Wal-Mart. "That's a lot, I know, but if I don't get them printed now, I may never get it done.
"And I'd hate to lose any of them."
Copyright © 2003
U.S. News & World Report, L.P. All rights reserved.




Inspiring Economic Revitalization and Corporate Citizenship



"Inspiring Economic Revitalization and Corporate Citizenship in Orange County"
More than ever we need to rally Orange County businesses to advance corporate citizenship and economic revitalization.
This is a call to action to galvanize business to do even more in its commitment and investment to serve others. With the tumbling of public trust for businesses and a weakened economy, we need to anchor and restore principles of responsiblity. This will help fuel our recovery.
Last week while lecturing at the University of Southern Califonia, I was suprised to learn that my alma mater -- the USC School of Business and Entrepreneur Program -- was void of any student dot-com business plans. Today, the students have renewed emphasis on structure. Their commitment is more to service enterprises and products with purpose not entirely fastened to the errant Internet business model. They are getting back to basics and dreaming of achievable careers.
There is a renewed culture of corporate citizenship and civic involvement. Most smart businesses are already engaged in helping the community. Some examples include, The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim which raised over $300,000 from its annual "Dux in Tux" event for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and bringing 15,000 elementary school students to its interactive "First Flight" education program. Southwest Airlines "Adopt -A-Pilot" hosts a mentorship program where pilots volunteer and adopt classrooms, including Santa Ana's Roosevelt Elementary School. Doctor's Ambulance has trained thousands of Orange County residents in CPR and First Aid and also donates lifesaving defibrillators. Volunteering to teach battered women essential financial skills is how the Orange County chapter of the Financial Planning Association enriches the community. Refurbishing a historical landmark warehouse in Fullerton's Downtown District is what Concordia University's Entrepreneurial MBA Program are contributing as an urban renewal for residential housing.
Every business can contribute something special. As an extension of my Irvine retail photo business,
http://www.operationphoto.com/, was launched to boost morale of deployed American troops abroad and their families back home. It provides free online photo sharing and discounted same day photo processing from digital cameras. Operation Photo was inspired by this pursuit for corporate citizenship, rather than as a commercial enterprise. It is fueled by my passion to give back, which included contributing funds to sponsor online banner ads on several mitlitary-themed websites, such as http://www.cinchouse.com/.
Many may have read or watched TV news coverage of my earlier grassroots civic campaign that brought 5,000 people from more than 20 states across the nation to support the airlines and commerce in New York City during Verteran's Day, 2001. In the process,
http://www.epiccusa.com/ also secured help from Delta Air Lines to contribute 10 free airline tickets for Irvine school teachers to visit the city and report back on its recovery. Another 100 tickets to New York were given (two each) to all 50 state governors for presenting to one citizen, and their guest, who best represented the spirit of recovery.
Together we can pioneer and inspire others and get involved; our stewardship can be a model for building an economic revitalization coalition. Every business has economic and civic capital to share through its products, services and employee volunteers to illustrate good corporate citizenship. Each of our businesses can also help spark emotional support during this time of national challenge




Promoting Prints from Digital Cameras



NEWS RELEASE PROMOTING AND CREATING DEMAND FOR QUALITY PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINTS FROM DIGITAL CAMERAS
Irvine, CA -- So you got a digital camera for the holidays, now what? To help grow the "printing from digital camera" category and offer more choices for ordering photos from digital cameras, Mitch Goldstone, president of Irvine, CA-based 30 Minute Photos Etc., is embarking on a leadership role to promote and represent the retail photo specialty channel and the photo industry to explain how easy and cost effective it is to make high quality photographic prints from digital cameras. As part of this undertaking, Goldstone will be participating on the March 1st Las Vegas PMA - DIMA panel to discuss the innovative photo kiosk’s: "Kiosk Heaven: The Potential of Self-Service Photo finishing." Goldstone will explain how picture-takers and the industry equally benefit from this new business model. As an early adopter, he is showcasing 30 Minute Photos Etc., (www.30minphotos.com) to demonstrate how easy it is to order quality photographic prints by using in-store self-service photo kiosks.Goldstone's campaign to promote quality photographic prints from digital cameras is about plainly explaining why photo kiosks and digital photo labs are as simple and convenient to use as processing traditional film. "The benefit is that these products and services let consumers simplify and customize their orders. It is also an easier solution than at home printing," said Goldstone. The appeal also relates to identifying highly accessible locations where these photo kiosks can be positioned -- from theme parks, cruise ships, travel and sporting venues to traditional photo retail outlets. As they become widely accessible, photo kiosks will become as easy to use as an ATM machine and just as fast as dropping off traditional film at the photo lab. Many photo labs already have photo kiosks in operation, which account for a growing segment of their business.


Fly with Courage: An Act of Patriotism - CNet News



IRVINE, Calif.--Aug. 14, 2002--
Air Travel On Sept. 11 Called "Act of Patriotism," by FLY WITH COURAGE National Campaign Founder, Mitch Goldstone
Can the strong patriotism of one person create a national trend?
Yes, insists Mitch Goldstone who is leading a national campaign encouraging people to fly on Sept. 11. His national grassroots campaign, FLY WITH COURAGE (www.flywithcourage.com), was initiated in response to recent reports indicating that many carriers are reeling from flight cancellations and worried passengers.
Goldstone and others will intentionally be passengers on international flights from Europe to New York City to Los Angeles on Sept. 11. "This act of patriotism, defiance, courage and remembrance has already triggered strong emotions," remarked Goldstone. "Recently, after explaining FLY WITH COURAGE to an airline reservationist, she tearfully expressed her personal appreciation for our show of support."
As chairman of the Community Services Commission in Irvine and a local business owner, Goldstone has a long history of civic activism. In response to the horrors of Sept. 11, he led a national effort which brought 5,000 people from 23 states to New York over Veteran's Day to support the fragile airlines' recovery and commerce in the beleaguered city. National media coverage of EPICC: Economic Patriotism in Irvine and Coast to Coast (www.epiccusa.com) included a personal letter from then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani and letters from most state governors.
EPICC also distributed 10 free round-trip tickets to Irvine school teachers to join and share their experiences with students. An additional 100 airline tickets were distributed to all 50 state governors to be given to the person and guest within each state who best exemplified the spirit of recovery.
FLY WITH COURAGE anticipates that the trepidations and anxieties gripping travelers will be transformed into a virtuous solution to support the airlines and global commerce.
"This campaign sets an example and is a powerful tool for boosting our nation's resolve. It helps recognize that economic patriotism means supporting the airlines and commerce. We must pause to salute and remember, but also resolve to move on in the memory of those lost," said Goldstone.
Background:
http://www.epiccusa.com/
http://www.epiccusa.com/irvine_world_news_(2).htm
http://www.30minphotos.com/news/lettergiuliani.html
http://www.irvineworldnews.com/Astories/oct11/nyflight.html
http://www.30minphotos.com/news/lettercox.html
http://www.30minphotos.com/news/nashville.html
http://www.30minphotos.com/news/alaska.html


Kodak Among Country's Best Corporate Citizens



Photo Industry Reporter -


Kodak: A Good Citizen
Congratulations to the Eastman Kodak Company for again being named among our country’s best corporate citizens.
Why is this so important? These intangible benefits are the capital behind which brands we trust. Yes, Kodak’s products and employees are second-to-none, but being recognized as a good corporate citizen is also consequential; it’s a sparkling illustration that diversity and compassion matters. These types of rankings make Kodak the heart of sophistication, and they understand that diversity of people equal’s diversity of thought.
Kodak’s leadership strengthens its courage and resolve that while earnings matter, so too does its values and character. There is a strong wind blowing a gust of fundamental change in how corporate America responds to business ethics and Kodak is one of its originators. This recognition by Business Ethics magazine enhances Kodak’ s reputation as a good corporate citizen, thus creating a stronger emotional connection with employees and customers. This fosters such passion that it even gets its customers to promote the company, in fact, I am Kodak’s sales force!


Receiving this national recognition doesn’t mean that Kodak is indifferent to the bottom line, rather, it proves that the world’s leader in photography is extra conscious of it.
To paraphrase the spirit of Margaret Mead’s message: Never doubt that a single company and its thoughtful committed employees can change the world: indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.
Mitch Goldstone, president30 Minute Photos Etc , Irvine,
CA
Scan Photos, 35mm Slide and Negative Scanning, Photo Restoration, Digital Printing - ScanMyPhotos.com