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#1385677 - 03/01/10 03:08 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Nick Mauel]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
If someone is called to the bench, he can no longer be your friendly neighbourhood lawyer.

Larry Fine hardly ever posts here - he needs to be respected for this.

Norbert
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1385701 - 03/01/10 03:57 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Norbert]
AJB Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/05
Posts: 3655
Loc: Surrey, England
Pianoloverus

My post was not an attack on Steve Cohen. It was in fact a general point that we cannot expect Piano World to be credible as an industry guide for consumers if there is one rule for certain dealers and a different rule for everyone else.

It is not equitable for Norbert to be criticised for his promotion of his brands, when Mr Cohen is allowed to mention piano buyer in bold at every available opportunity. I am aware that this is apparently done with Ferank Baxter's permission - but my personal view is that to permit this freedom to the extent that Steve uses it is an error of judgement. It detracts from PW and I feel may even be at the point of detracting from the credibility of piano buyer.

But more than that it is entirely improper in my view for PW moderators to bow to pressure from Mr Cohen for posts to be removed because he takes issue with them. There is a back track that has gone on here, with significant PM traffic behind the scenes.

As to his signature - my point is a simple one and Steve is well aware of it. He calls himself a contributing "editor". Use of the word editor suggests, in plain and simple English, that he has some form of editorial role and thus makes decisions about content.

If, as Steve has said to me, decisions about content are made by Larry Fine and not be Steve, then Steve's title is misleading. He may be a "contributor" to piano buyer, but not an "editor".

Furthermore, Steve has a financial interest in piano buyer, the extent of which is not disclosed.

I am not suggesting that Steve is biased or that he is unfairly promoting his own brands. However, this does not remove the clear conflict of interest. A person does not need to be indulging in unfair bias for the potential for conflict of interest to exist. It is this 'potential' that undermines the credibility of piano buyer because Steve is also a dealer and promotes himself as an "industry consultant" with undisclosed consultancy connections.

It is for these reasons that I consider Ken's removal of posts at Steve's request to be improper if Ken purports to act in an even handed way.

Norbert's point that Larry Fine rarely posts, tells us nothing. Steve is doing it all for him.

Piano buyer is useful for those who know little about pianos if they wish to know more about origin and manufacture. Since it went free and on-line, it must generate advertising revenue and it must promote itself in order to provide the traffic that advertisers require. Like it or not, this inevitably exposes the book/web-site to a charge of potential conflict of interest too, whether or not actual bias exists.

Kind regards

Adrian
_________________________
S&S Hamburg D, Yamaha CLP 280


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#1385724 - 03/01/10 04:17 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: AJB]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Adrian:

Yours is a totally logical post addressing the very important issue of "independence" "neutrality" and "non-interference"

It has nothing to of with 'personality' or perceived 'hostility' on those who point things out.

This is very important as I personally have never sought conflict with Mr.Cohen, someone I have kown for many years.

If this simple point made in Adrian's post is not understood or accepted, it will IMHO effectively eliminate the usefulness of Piano Buyer as an independent buyer's guide.

In fact I would admit to this immediately exact same if *I* was in Mr. Cohen's position myself.

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (03/01/10 04:21 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1385742 - 03/01/10 04:38 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: AJB]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19094
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: AJB
It was in fact a general point that we cannot expect Piano World to be credible as an industry guide for consumers if there is one rule for certain dealers and a different rule for everyone else.
I think it's far different to officially allow someone involved with a piano buyer's guide(which discusses all pianos and is free)to post about the book at PW and to allow dealers of specific makers to make posts pushing those pianos.

PB has been out for quite a while and I don't think this issue has even come up until this thread. As another poster has said, do lots of PW members think the reviews/ratings of pianos sold at Jason's Music are outrageously overrated? Or is it more like virtually no one thinks they are overrated?

The fact is that when people ask here for advice about pianos, by far the most common advice given by non industry professionals at PW is to read the PB(or to read the Piano Book and its Supplements before the the PB was published).



Edited by pianoloverus (03/01/10 04:40 PM)

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#1385772 - 03/01/10 05:07 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: pianoloverus]
Piano World Offline


Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5527
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (originally N...
There are a couple of reasons why I've allowed Steve to bring up the Piano Buyer in posts:

1.) It is a FREE piano resource on the Internet written by the same author who has been producing the well known Piano Book for years. Larry Fine and his publications have been highly respected by both the industry and the public for a long time now.

Steve does not push his own agenda in these posts, nor does he try to direct anyone to his own store, he simply points out the benefits of the PB and occassionaly asks for feedback from our members (much like Haliun is doing right now about their web site).

2.) We have a reciprocal advertising agreement between the Piano Buyer and Piano World. No money is exchanged, we simply promote in each others "publications".

3.) I know that Larry truly values the input he gets from our membership and takes your feedback to heart. I think it's a great opportunity for communications between the people who create the Piano Buyer, and the audience it is intended to reach.

You should know that most of the major piano manufacturers also audit the forums, even if they don't participate. They realize the value in reading what so many piano buyers/owners/players have to say.

While we're on the subject...

It's a fine line (no pun intended) we walk here between providing information and "selling". While I discourage businesses from soliciting sales from our members (other than purchasing obvious ads, which as you can see, we label as ads), I don't want people in the business to be afraid to post here either.

If all we ever hear from is piano players/owners, and never from the professionals in the industry, it becomes a one way street. I'd like to have a little more open communications provided once again that it doesn't dissolve into nothing but a sales pitch.
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#1385782 - 03/01/10 05:19 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: pianoloverus]
AJB Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/05
Posts: 3655
Loc: Surrey, England
Pianoloverus

You seem to be subscribing to the model which says:

"all the other sheep are jumping over the precipice so it must be a good idea".

The principle of conflict of interest is very well established. Why not stand back and view it dispassionately?

I would also disengage from the recommendations of piano buyer. Years ago, when I first started posting here, it was recommended frequently by numerous posters (including me, occasionally). This is because it was a useful technical guide that was untainted by the advertising and the potential for bias. It had the defect of being a technician's rather than a player's view, but that was at least clear.

In contrast, now it is touted frequently by only a few people, at least one of whom (Steve Cohen) has a vested interest in the commercial success of the publication / web site.

You are clearly a defender of Mr Cohen as your recent posting record amply demonstrates. Fair enough, but I wonder if you are standing back and looking at this entirely fairly?

The latter part of this thread (in the last 24 hours) has mainly been about Steve, who defends and promotes piano buyer vigorously, and Norbert who defends and promotes Brodmann and Hailun equally vigorously (though he has vowed to cease and desist!). Both positions have become tedious to some, judging by recent posting history on a few threads.

In both cases the central point is that over promotion becomes counter-productive and potentially damaging.

I am not disputing that piano buyer has some value. I am merely pointing out that ramming this down our throats all the time may make some of us question the motives and then question that value.

In the end I couldn't care less what two dealers in a sea of dealers do. But I do think that Piano World is a much bigger entity and should ideally be maintained as a fair and reasonable place where our shared enthusiasm for pianos can be discussed without the agendas of a small group being followed.

Larry Fine's publication had much more credibility when it was more independent and when it was not being so blatantly rammed down all our throats on this forum by a dealer with undisclosed interests in it and undisclosed claimed industry consultancy arrangements. You are entitled to have a different view if you wish and I shall respect that right.

KInd regards

Adrian
_________________________
S&S Hamburg D, Yamaha CLP 280


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#1385788 - 03/01/10 05:29 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Piano World]
Plowboy Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2172
Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Quote:
Rating pianos in a publication that sells paid advertisements, by anyone other than Larry Fine, would be difficult and suspect, if not impossible.


It is also true of a publication by Larry Fine. If I am researching a purchase, any article or publication which is paid for by manufacturers and dealers of that product is going to be very suspect. While Larry Fine is held in high regard here, to the general public he is an unknown. By accepting money from those he rates, he has damaged his credibility.

This is not an attack on Larry Fine, but this is how an outsider is going to view it. And that's the real problem with the piano ratings now.
_________________________
Gary Schenk

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#1385793 - 03/01/10 05:31 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Nick Mauel]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7089
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Nick Mauel
I like what Sophia said:

"Sometimes it is what is NOT said as much or more than what is stated that can be affected."

This is the thing I miss the most about the former Piano Book - its frankness.

Thankfully however, there are many experts on this forum willing to give good advice.


I liked Sofia's post as well, and I agree with you about the frankness that comes from being a bit more outside the industry. but this is a far different time from the late 80's and early 90's.

There are two ways to look at this. The first is about synergies. Frank Baxter makes no secret of trying to earn a living through PW. Larry Fine will not be able to get by on revenues from re-issuing the Piano Book every few years. That's about as viable as making one's fortune publishing a mainstream daily newspaper for street corner sales. If Frank and Larry have formed a contractual relationship to assist each other and have not taken into account the philosophical leanings of every member, that's life. Do you really think that contractual relationships between piano retailers and distributors are based on giving consumers every break possible?

This is about synergies and mutual survival in a tough environment. It's a business venture. Is Dan on the board of directors? Does he have a stake here? I don't think so. All of us can like it or leave it, or more pragmatically, see how it plays out before reaching a conclusion that our heavily-invested free memberships are being jeopardized. grin The end-product may have more fluff, less candor, and enhanced entertainment value alongside the ads. That's not all bad. The piano industry on Larry Fine's home turf doesn't have much going for it in the way of pizzazz. Maybe this will help.

The other way to look at it is that PW membership is being used as a test kitchen for sampling opinion. If people feel used and abused that this is what the cost of their free membership is exposing them to, then they can tune out, offer none of their priceless opinions for free, and stew in their own juices.
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#1385796 - 03/01/10 05:35 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: AJB]
AJB Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/05
Posts: 3655
Loc: Surrey, England
Frank posted whilst I was typing.

I still think you have allowed this to go too far Frank. It is one thing for you to carry a piano buyer advert in exchange for Larry to carry one for PW. It is entirely another to allow Steve Cohen to mention it at every opportunity.

His signature promotes his store and his consultancy.

I agree that Larry's book was well respected in times gone by. Now that it is advertiser funded and has at least one dealer with a financial interest, is that respect undiluted? Questionable.

And permitting moderators to delete posts that raise pertinent points about Steve's role is going a long way down the street of bias and favouritism.

I also question the relevance of Steve's promotional posts. He tends to jump in with a "read piano buyer" response. He rarely, if ever, states exactly where in piano buyer one might find something direct;y relevant to the thread.

You state that piano buyer is free on the web. You seem to infer that this is a virtue. This may be so - or it may not. It is not a virtue if the reality is that bias in imperceptibly creeping in due to the need to satisfy advertisers, investors and interested parties. Whichever way you look at it, the publication is less independent than it was, and it would appear less frank in its expressed views.

Kind regards

Adrian
_________________________
S&S Hamburg D, Yamaha CLP 280


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#1385843 - 03/01/10 06:35 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: AJB]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19094
Loc: New York City
The PB piano ratings(at least for the performance pianos, the only ones I read)are extremely close to the ones in the last edition of the Supplement.

Have makers with big ads suddenly been given rave reviews after receiving poor reviews previously? Or have makers with no ads suddenly been given poor reviews after receiving good reviews in the past?

IMO the individual piano reviews are similar in tone, content, the precision and objectivity of the writing, and what I would call "bending over backward to be fair"?

Much ado about nothing IMO.

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#1385860 - 03/01/10 06:57 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Piano World]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4182
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: Piano World
We have a reciprocal advertising agreement between the Piano Buyer and Piano World. No money is exchanged, we simply promote in each others "publications".


And this is where this agreement ends. We all like to barter, nothing wrong with this: Any sudden additions to this agreement will be viewed as favoring one side or another…...

Now here comes the rationalization:

Originally Posted By: Piano World
There are a couple of reasons why I've allowed Steve to bring up the Piano Buyer in posts:

1.) It is a FREE piano resource on the Internet written by the same author who has been producing the well known Piano Book for years. Larry Fine and his publications have been highly respected by both the industry and the public for a long time now.

Steve does not push his own agenda in these posts, nor does he try to direct anyone to his own store, he simply points out the benefits of the PB and occassionaly asks for feedback from our members (much like Haliun is doing right now about their web site).


By becoming a part owner of this book business he has a vested interest in the success and continuation of this publication.
One could not deny that this is part of his agenda.

You would like to scratch each other’s backs fine. But do not expect the entire world to go along with it or agree.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1385864 - 03/01/10 07:03 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: AJB]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: AJB

I still think you have allowed this to go too far Frank. It is one thing for you to carry a piano buyer advert in exchange for Larry to carry one for PW. It is entirely another to allow Steve Cohen to mention it at every opportunity.


My mentions of Piano Buyer are a minority of my posts AND are usually on point to the topic.

Originally Posted By: AJB

His signature promotes his store and his consultancy.


Dealers are encouraged to uses sigs to be transparent. Currently I am consulting only Larry Fine, but occasionally I am contractually prohibited from identifying clients.

Originally Posted By: AJB

I agree that Larry's book was well respected in times gone by. Now that it is advertiser funded and has at least one dealer with a financial interest, is that respect undiluted? Questionable.


There are 280 pages of "evidence" in the current issue of Piano Buyer, and in a week or so, our Spring 2010 issue will add many more. Your slur in saying "Larry's book was well respected in times gone by", is unfounded. While I agree in totality that there is a potential for abuse, or "dilution" as you put it, so far NO ONE has pointed out where abuse has occurred. We each have the potential to be a murderer, but until one finds the dead body, you are innocent until the evidence proves you guilty. Claiming that Piano Buyer might be bias is patently unfair when the evidence doesn't support the charge.
Originally Posted By: AJB

And permitting moderators to delete posts that raise pertinent points about Steve's role is going a long way down the street of bias and favouritism.


The reason the post was pulled was because it contained FALSE information that was potentially damaging to both me and Piano Buyer, in addition to a personal attack on me. It violated Forum rules. You say "going a long way down the street of bias and favouritism." It was not a biased decision, and the post was offensive enough that it would have been pulled regardless of who posted it.
Originally Posted By: AJB

I also question the relevance of Steve's promotional posts. He tends to jump in with a "read piano buyer" response. He rarely, if ever, states exactly where in piano buyer one might find something direct;y relevant to the thread.


If I make a post that you judge as irrelevent, feel free to post a reply to that affect. If I have time, I usually post a link to the page in Piano Buyer where the pertinent information can be found. Your claim of "rarely if ever" is simply inaccurate. Often the OP needs general information, or would benefit from multiple articles. In those cases I simply recommend the book.

Originally Posted By: AJB

You state that piano buyer is free on the web. You seem to infer that this is a virtue. This may be so - or it may not. It is not a virtue if the reality is that bias in imperceptibly creeping in due to the need to satisfy advertisers, investors and interested parties. Whichever way you look at it, the publication is less independent than it was, and it would appear less frank in its expressed views.


You imply that bias is creeping in. You imply that it is less independent. You imply that it is less frank in its views. I say that these positions are catagorically false.

If you have any evidence to support these claims, or if you find any in the future, please bring them to our attention.

Kind regards

Steve
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1385888 - 03/01/10 07:39 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Perhaps it is time that Larry Fine himself chimes in at this point and sets the record straight.

There's too much posturing going on and the issue is IMHO of crucial importance for P.B.

Ideally we can all step back a bit an give those who are indeed sincere a chance to "prove their stuff"
Let there be plenty of goodwill....

In my book, Mr Fine never had to do this before and it is indeed regretful that this appears to be necesary at this juncture.

My own basic question in all of this would be simply this:

"Is Mr. Cohen as "co-editor" of P.B. in any shape or form involved with - or 'influential' in - the present or future 'ratings' of the publication?"

If anybody here can be trusted with the answer 100% - it would be Mr. Fine himself. This I shall present as my sincere belief in things.

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (03/01/10 07:58 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1385893 - 03/01/10 07:45 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: pianoloverus]
Plowboy Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2172
Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
The PB piano ratings(at least for the performance pianos, the only ones I read)are extremely close to the ones in the last edition of the Supplement.

Have makers with big ads suddenly been given rave reviews after receiving poor reviews previously? Or have makers with no ads suddenly been given poor reviews after receiving good reviews in the past?

IMO the individual piano reviews are similar in tone, content, the precision and objectivity of the writing, and what I would call "bending over backward to be fair"?

Much ado about nothing IMO.


Advertising has made no difference to your opinion, or mine, of the objectiveness of Piano Buyer, but to those who don't know Larry Fine from Moe Howard, the potential for bias based on ad revenues is there. That will result in a loss of credibility to the-man-in-the-street.
_________________________
Gary Schenk

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#1385898 - 03/01/10 07:50 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Plowboy]
fingers Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 799
Loc: Westchester, NY
I'll bet that Steve C. is real glad he started this thread. crazy

fingers
_________________________
Playing piano at age 2, it was thought that I was some sort of idiot-savant. As it turns out, I'm just an idiot.

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#1385913 - 03/01/10 08:02 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Norbert]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Perhaps it is time that Larry Fine himself chimes in at this point and sets the record straight.

There's too much posturing going on and the issue is IMHO of crucial importance for P.B.

Ideally we can all step back a bit an give those who are indeed sincere a chance to "prove their stuff"
Let there be plenty of goodwill....

In my book, Mr Fine never had to do this before and it is indeed regretful that this appears to be necesary at this juncture.

My own basic question in all of this would be simply this:

"Is Mr. Cohen as "co-editor" of P.B. in any shape or form involved with - or 'influential' in - the present or future 'ratings' of the publication?"

If anybody here can be trusted with the answer 100% - it would be Mr. Fine himself. This I shall present as my sincere belief in things.

Norbert


This morning I asked Larry to post. He assured me he would this evening or tomorrow.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1385914 - 03/01/10 08:04 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: fingers]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: fingers
I'll bet that Steve C. is real glad he started this thread. crazy

fingers


Well, the first page or two had some good ideas on it!
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1385918 - 03/01/10 08:09 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Plowboy]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19094
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Gary Schenk

Advertising has made no difference to your opinion, or mine, of the objectiveness of Piano Buyer, but to those who don't know Larry Fine from Moe Howard, the potential for bias based on ad revenues is there. That will result in a loss of credibility to the-man-in-the-street.


Hopefully, if the man in the street reads the the intro to the PB, he will feel otherwise. If not, then since this was apparently the only viable way to continue publishing the PB, what's the point in claiming there's a potential problem on this site whose members are not in the man in the street crowd?

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#1385919 - 03/01/10 08:11 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Plowboy]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4182
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: Gary Schenk

That will result in a loss of credibility to the-man-in-the-street.


Further to this thought, it will damage the credibility of the publication and also the old family dealership. Think about it. Joe six-pack reads the PB and then reads this forum with what……… 10 yrs of postings by Cohen a part owner of this publication?

The optics of this is horrible. It will play like a bag of rocks.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1385921 - 03/01/10 08:16 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
Originally Posted By: Gary Schenk

That will result in a loss of credibility to the-man-in-the-street.


Further to this thought, it will damage the credibility of the publication and also the old family dealership. Think about it. Joe six-pack reads the PB and then reads this forum with what……… 10 yrs of postings by Cohen a part owner of this publication?

The optics of this is horrible. It will play like a bag of rocks.


Your friend Norbert has mis-characterized me as co-author, a misrepresentation first utter by him; now you chime in with a new claim, also false, the I am a part owner of Piano Buyer.

Do you guys coordinate your misrepresentations and the rst, or are they random falsehoods?
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1385924 - 03/01/10 08:24 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: pianoloverus]
Nick Mauel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/05/08
Posts: 777
Loc: Sarasota and Naples, FL
Turandot, the frankness I mentioned earlier was not just a product of the 80's and 90's, it was seen right up until the 2008-2009 Annual Supplement.

Steve, I don't think you can argue with Adrian that the new publication is not less frank in its views. It most definitely is and I would be glad to cite numerous examples. However, I'm not objecting to this, as I realize it is simply a thing of the past now that things are being done differently.

A kinder, gentler Piano Book is still (so far) a service to this industry. Thank You, Larry Fine. I don't know anyone who has read your publications forwards, backwards, sideways, and upside-down more than myself, and have used them to help educate customers over many years.

_________________________
Nick's Piano Showroom
Naples, Fort Myers, & Sarasota, FL
New Estonia, Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann & Ritmuller
239-206-4541 direct line
www.nickspiano.com

Concert Piano Technician, Dealer, and Pianist

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#1385939 - 03/01/10 08:47 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
PianoWorksATL Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2630
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: Steve Cohen
You imply that it is less independent. You imply that it is less frank in its views.


Hello Steve,

I own several print copies of The Piano Buyer. I've used the online version. We occasionally share them with customers, use them as references and I even enjoy the articles. I am not advertised in the book.

In The Piano Book, and certainly The Annual Supplements there are year over year changes in the different editions that I believe are evidence of this eroding frankness.

Perhaps my favorite recent example was in the description of Steinway & Sons(NY):

In the 2007-2008 Annual Supplement, in the commentary following the Group 1 rankings (page 14), "Steinway & Sons (New York), at its best, has one of the finest sounds of any piano in Group 1--and relative to the others in the group, the worst workmanship. It's a testament to the amazing piano designs of this venerable brand, and the integrity of its sound-body construction, that instruments with so little finesse in workmanship can potentially sound and play so well." shocked

In the 2008-2009 Annual Supplement, same place (page 14), "Steinway & Sons (New York), at its best, has one of the finest sounds of any piano in Group 1, but relative to the others in the group, there is less attention to detail in a number of areas of production and musical preparation. It's a testament to the amazing piano designs of this venerable brand, and the integrity of its sound-body construction, that the instruments can potentially sound and play so well." blush

It is certainly fair and reasonable for Larry to modify his words, to better explain his criticisms. I'm not accusing Larry of bowing to outside pressures, but side by side, readers may fairly call this language less frank in nature. From there, the reader is free to judge for themselves why softer words were chosen.

Try not to become too defensive. You help make and promote a good product. Larry's book has helped change the industry for the better. Because of how the books are compiled, the presence of Ads, it is a business with good intentions but not above such scrutiny. I look forward to the new edition.
_________________________
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bsendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
Pre-Owned: Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & other fine pianos
Full Restoration Shop
www.PianoWorks.com
www.youtube.com/PianoWorksAtlanta

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#1385946 - 03/01/10 08:55 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: PianoWorksATL]
Nick Mauel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/05/08
Posts: 777
Loc: Sarasota and Naples, FL
Sam, I believe that instance has actually already been explained by saying something to the effect of "Oops, what was I thinking?" But you make a very good point and somebody didn't like seeing that in print!

I like things like "These pianos are probably not going to win awards for anything in particular..." Or, such-and-such pianos "have a tone that neither offends nor delights".

Another thing that's much less frank than in previous years is some of the cheaper models of a particular brand not being criticized even when it would be justifiable to do so. Sort of like a 'don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all' policy.
_________________________
Nick's Piano Showroom
Naples, Fort Myers, & Sarasota, FL
New Estonia, Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann & Ritmuller
239-206-4541 direct line
www.nickspiano.com

Concert Piano Technician, Dealer, and Pianist

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#1385947 - 03/01/10 08:55 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: PianoWorksATL]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Hi Sam,

Consider this possibility: Since 2007 Steinway has been steadily improving their workmanship and Larry's evaluations have evolved along with the improvement.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

Top
#1385950 - 03/01/10 09:00 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Nick Mauel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/05/08
Posts: 777
Loc: Sarasota and Naples, FL
Perhaps Steinway will consider purchasing an advertisement.
_________________________
Nick's Piano Showroom
Naples, Fort Myers, & Sarasota, FL
New Estonia, Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann & Ritmuller
239-206-4541 direct line
www.nickspiano.com

Concert Piano Technician, Dealer, and Pianist

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#1385951 - 03/01/10 09:04 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Nick Mauel]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10335
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Nick Mauel
Perhaps Steinway will consider purchasing an advertisement.


Spring 2010 (out in a week or so) - Page 12 wink
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

Top
#1385997 - 03/01/10 10:09 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
At no point have I ever claimed Mr Cohen's title to be
"co-owner" or done so to *mislead* anybody.

What would have been the point of this?

Mr. Cohen's title, according to his own signature and Piano Buyer listings on page 2, is "Advertising Director" and "Contributing Editor"

It's the "Co-editor" that carries - at least in my mind - a very special responsibility for fairness, independence and neutrality.

It's a responisbility that goes far beyond what an average guy or dealer could ever say here on the site.

It is the very mark by which Mr. Fine has earned his integrity and respect this, for many years.

What is really amazing is that this very very simple point is so hard to acknowledge or accept.

Unless "co-editor" of course is a totally meaningless position with absolutely no real or potential influence for content.

This is, what IMHO needs to be clarified here.

P.S. Silverwood Piano and our company are not 'friends' - we actually sometimes compete in same market.

Any chance to resolve this matter honestly and amicably?

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (03/01/10 10:19 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1386002 - 03/01/10 10:18 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 19285
Loc: New York
While I'm with those who wonder about conflict of interest, it looked to me like this thread was supposed to be about whether people thought any of the ratings should have been different.

Unless I missed something, there were only about 3 or 4 suggestions that any pianos should have been rated differently than they are.

If that means everything else is fine (so to speak), that would seem to suggest it's pretty fine. smile

I love "tangents" as much as anybody, but I always thought tangents aren't supposed to be instead of the original point. I'd love to know which other piano ratings anyone feels should have been different.
_________________________
"Everything I say is my opinion, including the facts." :-)

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#1386004 - 03/01/10 10:22 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Nick Mauel Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/05/08
Posts: 777
Loc: Sarasota and Naples, FL
Originally Posted By: Steve Cohen
What would you guess is the percentage of Steinway buyers that have Steinway's image as one of their primary motivations to buy?

Is one of the benefits of owning a Steinway that it impresses others? If so, does that benefit have value?



I just wondered why an 'industry consultant' needs to ask such questions, and others like it.
_________________________
Nick's Piano Showroom
Naples, Fort Myers, & Sarasota, FL
New Estonia, Mason & Hamlin, Brodmann & Ritmuller
239-206-4541 direct line
www.nickspiano.com

Concert Piano Technician, Dealer, and Pianist

Top
#1386005 - 03/01/10 10:25 PM Re: How Would You Rate Pianos? [Re: Steve Cohen]
fingers Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 799
Loc: Westchester, NY
Originally Posted By: Steve Cohen
Hi Sam,

Consider this possibility: Since 2007 Steinway has been steadily improving their workmanship and Larry's evaluations have evolved along with the improvement.


I don't think Sam really wants to acknowledge that possibility, as it does not serve his opportunity to spread FUD.

fingers
_________________________
Playing piano at age 2, it was thought that I was some sort of idiot-savant. As it turns out, I'm just an idiot.

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