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Thread: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

  1. #751

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    I agree it's a waste of resources and landfill space. If they were looking for a tax write-off that could have been accomplished by donating them to schools or charities.

    It reminds me of a PRS video from a while back. After many years as CEO Paul went down to the shop floor and made a guitar to prove he still had his chops. The QC department rejected it and the video showed the guitar being cut into pieces. What they were trying to say is that PRS quality standards are so high it doesn't matter who the builder is - if it doesn't pass QC it doesn't go into the wild. I know that was one guitar and not thousands, a band-saw and not heavy equipment, but the underlying principle may be the same.

    Most people/players really hated that Gibson guitar/robot tuners/etc. and it was held up as the epitome of Henry's failure, so doing this in such a grand style is, perhaps, the new managements message that they hated it too.

    My impression is that this is a PR shock-and-awe stunt meant to attract attention (which it's doing in grand style). In the PR biz the saying goes "no news is bad news" so the mere fact that it's gotten eyeballs and peeps talking about it means that it is successful. People forget details over time but remember the brand.

    The more attention you give it the more you're feeding Gibson's PR machine.
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  2. #752
    Certified! Bernie Daniel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Pittsburgh Bill View Post
    ...Perhaps Gibson could have a more profitable mandolin division if they were to offer instruments of equal quality to other builders at a like price point...
    And what is your proof that they don't?
    Bernie
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  4. #753
    Pittsburgh Bill
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernie Daniel View Post
    And what is your proof that they don't?
    I offer no proof nor do I claim knowledge as to what extent their mandolin division contributes to their lack of profitability.
    Last edited by Pittsburgh Bill; Aug-01-2019 at 1:43pm.
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  5. #754
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Verne Andru View Post
    I have to admit to being at a loss understanding all the Gibson hate. They've invested in the R&D, design and have been marketing these products [taking into account market fluctuations] for years. Somebody else coming along and ripping their designs is IP theft which Gibson has every right to protect themselves against.

    Saying it's okay to steal intellectual property because some lawyer argues the creator "abandoned" it is nonsense.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbd1trNz9bY

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  7. #755
    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Regarding the destroyed Firebirds, here's some info from musicradar posted today:

    The video was posted by a former Gibson employee, BJ Wilkes, who explained to YouTuber The Guitologist that the guitars were unsellable and that the company needed to get them off the books as the new owners looked to change the company’s fortunes after its well-publicised financial problems and former CEO Henry Juszkiewicz’s ousting.

    Addressing the concerns of those who asked why the guitars were not donated, or their parts repurposed, Gibson said in an official statement that the video footage was of “an isolated batch of Firebird X models built in 2009-2011 which were unsalvageable and damaged with unsafe components. This isolated group of Firebird X models were unable to be donated for any purpose and were destroyed accordingly.”
    The article goes on to mention the Gibson Foundation that has donated "thousands of guitars to charities and schools," and is donating a guitar a day for the next thousand days.

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  9. #756
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    They would have been better off focusing on their donations and just quietly gotten rid of these guitars. I do not hold it against them because even our own luthiers here cut up a dud of an instrument when it doesn't meet their level of quality.
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

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  10. #757
    Registered User wreded's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    It would be a good ad, pull one out, tune it and play.
    Like the old Timex commercials; "Takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'"

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  12. #758
    Registered User Joe Dodson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Clark View Post
    These guitars were Gibson's property, so they can certainly do with them what they like. But what a shameful waste this was.
    Couldn't have said it better. What a revolting waste.

  13. #759
    Registered User Joe Dodson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by wreded View Post
    It would be a good ad, pull one out, tune it and play.
    Like the old Timex commercials; "Takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'"
    It would make a pretty good Martin ad too.

    Avuncular voice-over: "Gibson wants you to 'play authentic.'"

    [guitars crushed ......]

    Avuncular voice-over: "I guess this must be what they mean."

    *glamour shot of a D-18*

    I wouldn't own one of those guitars on a dare, but I'm still sickened by watching that.

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  15. #760

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    If the previous Gibson made these guitars and they were truly turds, and you were the new owners, would you want a bunch of students playing them? Future customers remembering the robo-tuners that didn't work, electronics that were nothing but trouble - Do you seriously think that would be remembered as goodwill in the future? This is overblown moral outrage. Not hard to imagine these were junk and destined for the scrap heap. I teach a guitar class in a public school and problem instruments take away from class time. Good riddance.

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  17. #761
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by BillytheB View Post
    If the previous Gibson made these guitars and they were truly turds, and you were the new owners, would you want a bunch of students playing them? Future customers remembering the robo-tuners that didn't work, electronics that were nothing but trouble - Do you seriously think that would be remembered as goodwill in the future? This is overblown moral outrage. Not hard to imagine these were junk and destined for the scrap heap. I teach a guitar class in a public school and problem instruments take away from class time. Good riddance.
    Absolutely! And I’m not to partial of Gibson. But this is correct.
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

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  18. #762

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    That may be, but like Scott said, the staging of the event for video is calculated to get a reaction from the public, which it certainly is on this forum.

    The video mentions in the text the youtuber "guitologist" who in the past has posted videos of finding destroyed Les Pauls in the Guitar Center dumpster that Gibson instructed GC employees to destroy with a hammer, before throwing in the trash. The LP's had 50-60 deep dents in the face, neck, and frets were bent, etc. Obviously some type of issue with a new guitar made a refund necessary, but instead of sending the guitar back to Gibson, or selling it used, GC was instructed to just destroy it. (I don't know the specifics) At any rate, guitologist was appalled and auctioned the damaged Les Paul on eBay, giving the proceeds to school/hospital. (can't remember which) The damaged guitar still brought over $400, IIRC. THEN, a few months later, he finds ANOTHER Les Paul in the GC dumpster -- same story!!! In fairness, this was before the "takeover" so Gibson has had some weird policies in place for quite a while, IMHO.

  19. #763
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Sorry guys, of all the things to be outraged about in the world today this don’t make the list!

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  21. #764
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by trodgers View Post
    That just makes me cringe. Our high school band has to do a tremendous amount of fundraising to keep the program alive. Imagine the goodwill Gibson could have created by donating those instruments to schools in need.
    If you believe the explanation, donating them would have the opposite effect. Does your school really need some crap, unplayable guitars?

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  23. #765

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by sgarrity View Post
    Sorry guys, of all the things to be outraged about in the world today this don’t make the list!
    Very true, but we don't discuss those things on this forum. This is a mandolin/music related forum........

    mandolin joy

    mandolin outrage

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  25. #766
    Registered User Bob Clark's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Yet another thread that cannot ever reach anything approaching a consensus view. I am done wasting mental energy on the whole Gibson topic. I see this as just one more reason to support small-shop and individual luthiers. That is where I will continue to spend my money.
    Purr more, hiss less.

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  27. #767
    Registered User mtucker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    There are so many great electrics, Collings, John Suhr, Tom Anderson etc. that I honestly haven’t paid attention to either new Fender or Gibson guitars for many years so I have no dog in this. The YouTube, threatening letters, litigation, crushing guitars etc. is all short game grand stand play, unbecoming. Interesting to see how it plays out. Go Rams!
    Last edited by mtucker; Aug-02-2019 at 5:36pm.

  28. #768
    Registered User Joe Dodson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Clark View Post
    Yet another thread that cannot ever reach anything approaching a consensus view.
    Well, probably not about controversial issues like hedge fund weirdos in leather jackets threatening to let loose luthier litigation, and mass destruction of guitars so poorly built that Gibson can't give them away without risking catastrophic injury to impoverished school children.

    But at least we can all agree on the important stuff, like that Bill Monroe wrote Jerusalem Ridge. Peace and happy pickin', y'all.

  29. #769
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    I understand Gibson getting rid of junk, I understand asking GC to destroy defective guitars. I had a mandolin that the top collapsed Gibson did not fix it, they destroyed it and sent me a new one, more trouble to retop than make a new one. What I don't understand is why so many guitars in stock if they are not selling, why build so many before you know how they will sell. It cost materials and manpower to build those guitars then pay to have them destroyed. A company that is struggling to turn a profit?

  30. #770
    Registered User Gunnar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Maybe it explains why they're struggling to turn a profit?
    Mandolin: Kentucky KM150
    Other instruments: way too many, and yet, not nearly enough.

    "Imagine life without mandolin. Now slap yourself! Never do it again!" -Gunnar Salyer

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  32. #771
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    In today’s world, if you can make money building guitars, build guitars. If you can make more money producing widgets, produce widgets. If you can’t make money doing either leave your money in the bank (or under the bed!)!

  33. #772
    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandoplumb View Post
    I understand Gibson getting rid of junk, I understand asking GC to destroy defective guitars. I had a mandolin that the top collapsed Gibson did not fix it, they destroyed it and sent me a new one, more trouble to retop than make a new one. What I don't understand is why so many guitars in stock if they are not selling, why build so many before you know how they will sell. It cost materials and manpower to build those guitars then pay to have them destroyed. A company that is struggling to turn a profit?
    Just a wild guess here:

    Gibson licensed the robot tuner tech from a German company named "Tronical." That deal may have required a certain number of units manufactured for a volume discount on the licensing, or any parts supplied by Tronical. Last year, Tronical sued Gibson for $50 million as breach of contract, then Gibson counter-sued.

    I don't know the current status of that legal fight, but the fact that all those guitars were made, didn't sell, and were then destroyed, may have something to do with the Gibson-Tronical troubles.

  34. #773

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    Gibson should not play the copyright game.
    Musical instrument shape is not defensible.
    https://guitar.com/news/gibson-loses...e-in-eu-court/

  35. #774

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    This thread is really out there.

    Gibson is a private company and can do whatever the heck they want. Period.

  36. #775

    Default Re: Gibson threatening the mandolin and guitar luthier community

    They can’t claim rights that don’t belong to them.

    They can break all of their own stuff they like.

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