Trouble for Nikon?

Started Mar 17, 2014 | Discussions thread
pwilly Senior Member • Posts: 1,167
Re: agree -- a real problem but correctable with effort

rhlpetrus wrote:

Eamon Hickey wrote:

rhlpetrus wrote:

I tend to agree with you, but it'll require some action on the part of Nikon, especially in Asia, since that's where markets are still growing and Nikon cannot let this become a commonly-held view in that part of the world.

Late, but they have acted. Eamon has more first hand knowledge, but as a former service tech for IBM, when we screwed up, it took time to identify, test and produce sufficient quantity for a fix.

Exactly. The risk is that they will develop an enduring reputation for low quality or dishonest customer service in China and, by extension, possibly other parts of Asia. That could be a very costly mistake. But they can counteract this problem if they make a serious, ongoing effort to do so. I agree with you that they're going to have to -- I don't remember Nikon being the target of a big national TV take down in any Western market in the past, so this is a bigger deal than some people on this thread seem to think.

All companies make mistakes, and they always will. The trick is how you handle them. This is far from the first time Nikon has messed up, and it won't be the last. Since the 1970s, they've more or less muddled through their screw ups, responding late almost always and never particularly graciously, but usually, in the end, responsibly. One way or another, their brand reputation has survived mostly intact. That said, they would do themselves a big favor, especially in the Internet age, to get a lot better at handling this kind of thing.

This is something they have not gauged appropriately, imo, the viral aspect of the internet. 10 or 20 years ago similar issues were much less likely to get to a larger audience. Even this China TV show report would likely be restricted to China only. Not now, and companies, as any institution, should be much more careful regarding issues that may hurt their reputation. That involves products, labor practices (many cases already reproted of malpractices by large corporations (ZARA, Nike, etc)), environmental impact, etc. It's a new era, much more open, more transparent, and those involved should be very careful with PR/image.

It is the viral aspect of the internet that has caused the uproar. Most Japanese companies do not want to loose face and tend to be not very forthcoming anyway. Look at Canon and the 1D2 and 1D3 focus issues. Nikon's problem was probably Copal, if I remember correctly there are only 2 shutter vendors and the ones Nikon is currently using look like they came from Copal.

They first needed to react.

I would be willing to wager that a significant percentage of camera service is based on dirty and smudged sensors. This fact would lull the service centers into a "Oh well another dirty sensor". Would they inform corporate, I don't think so. Then the forums began to fill with people stating there was something different about the D600. At some point posters said their cameras were being replaced. That would lead me to believe the service centers were informed that there was something wrong, but what.

The taxonomy to affect a fix would have been an arduous process.  They needed to determine the exact cause, shutter, mirror, sub-mirror, camera finish? Then once they positively identified the problem was the shutter, they had to work with the vendor to produce a definitive fix. Then they had to produce, distribute and prepare to replace at least 10's of thousands of shutters. Realistically they could not announce the fix until all that was done.

Their big problem is what they were saying in the interum. Communication is the fault of Nikon, and most other companies. Failure to know exactly how and when to communicate is why heads should probably roll.

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