Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Repair Shop Not a Genius Bar

On this blog I almost never make recommendations for products or consumer services. Too many business interests disingenuously pay bloggers to post complimentary coverage, so I avoid anything that smacks of Web 2.0 advertising.

But in this case I think my recommendation of the iPod Repair Clinic also carries with it a message about entrepreneurship and consumerism that may be of interest to those outside of Los Angeles who may not be likely to take advantage of this local trade, particularly since the owner of the clinic acknowledges the labor and identity-formation involved in creating user-generated content on an iPod.

I also like the fact that the iPod Repair Clinic looks like a real repair store, not a "genius bar." In his little garage in a residential neighborhood, Joe Kempe's "iPod surgeon" doctor's coat hangs in its dry cleaning bag, and on the other side of the room the iPod graveyard from which he harvests parts from old devices fills up a table with the remains of the electronic dead.

Like many consumers, I don't need to pay for the privilege of waiting in line for a hip twenty-something in a slick branded store to act condescendingly to me and tell me I'm probably having trouble with my device because I'm pirating music. Kempe is older than me, wears a yarmulke, and did the work right before my eyes for exactly the fair price he promised. Mazel tov!

(He also repairs iPhones.)

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