Welcome to Wetzlar!Thanks a lot for all your comments and supporting our April fool’s trick!

We were tickled pink that we were able to lead you up the garden path – at least for some minutes.

And our apologies if we ruined your Easter Monday with our joke. If you took our article seriously:
No, Leica is not going to be sold to Disney (at least as far as we know…)

Andreas (Text) & Leon (Idea & Product Design)

Leica doesn’t come to ease: The success of the Solms based company has stirred desire in the US, leading to a take over of the German camera manufacturer by Disney, Burbank.

How The Story Started: Leicas Call Home

It sounds like a thriller how we found about this deal: First hints of a forum member about hidden features of Leica products led to a mysterious website. After cracking the code we found shocking evidence about the sales of the last German camera maker to the US American entertainment company. Official sources in Solms deny, but evidence proves that the merger was prepared well in advance.

Leica Forum Exclusive: The Leica Disney Deal Revealed

Traffic Leica Kameras

Network traffic peaking after USB connect of a Leica camera

Carl Bretteville (forum member cbretteville) has proved his sniffer dog qualities in 2007 when he analyzed the Leica M8 meta data: Leica engineers in Solms were astonished how detailled his findings were. January this year Carl started a new project about the Leica M9. He noticed that his network traffic peaked when connecting the camera via USB to his computer. Carl contacted us via the forum if we knew anything about this phenomenon and if we have any explanation. We found the same pattern with other Leica cameras (Leica M8, D-LUX 6, X2) and continued to explore this issue.

Independently  Carl and I found out that  all cameras connected to a server with a mysterious web address:

http://yrvpn-pnzren.qvfarl.de

Alarming Suspicion: Leica Firmware Hacked?

The first suspicion was: The Leica Firmware of several camera hacked – a horrible scenario! Thousands of cameras part of a spam-bot network? Abused as a spy tool, sending private images from around the world to a criminal organization? But one thing didn’t fit in this scenario: The German .de web domain. As a general rule command servers of hacker networks are located in East Europe or Asia, German domains are too easy to track down.

We accessed the yrvpn-pnzren.qvfarl.de server via an ordinary web browser on a prepared computer. What we found wasn’t what we expected: No forwarding to a virus infected Ukranian pharmacy shop but the log in form of a common blog software:

More research showed that this server was located in a German computing center and was registered  anonymously.

The source code of the log in form brought up a new hint, the website’s title was „Get The Red Dot“. An organization on the hunt for Leica?

Who is yrvpn-pnzren.qvfarl?

This is something we really wanted to know: Who is behind this strange web address? Maybe the name itself was a hidden information? A friend of mine, an IT security expert, feeded the name “yrvpn-pnzren.qvfarl” into a decoding software, normally used to crack passwords by brute computing force. For a password of average security this software would need about 2 to 3 days. We started the process on Friday evening and hoped for a result on Monday.

But – surprise, surprise – we got the result not in days but in seconds! The name wasn’t MD5 encoded but used a primitive ROT13 code. But the biggest surprise was the result:

leica-camera.disney

Disney and Leica? Not the most obvious partnership…

But what kind of relationship can this be – a special edition (Leica MM Mickey Mouse?), a cooperation or even more? We were quite sure to find the answer in the password protected blog.

Password „goofy“: The Secret Leica Disney Files

“Disney” gave us the crucial clue: After ”mickeymouse” and “donaldduck” our third guess “goofy” turned out to be the right password.

What we found on that blog, shocked us deeply: Apparently the take over of Leica Camera by Disney is a already a fact, including press releases, press photos and mock-ups of a new product range.

New Products: Leica Ducksborough Style

This reveals the last special editions like the Leica X2 Paul Smith in a different light: These were perhaps the first tests by the Leica marketing research, how to sell Leica products to target groups grown up with Snow White, Bambi, Pocahontas and Arielle.

Apparently the Leica M drafts are still under consideration, but the mock-ups promise the worst. Disney seems not to be afraid to wreck the iconic Leica design by Mickey Mouse elements:

Leica M 240

One designer’s comment demonstrates that the reasons not to offer a Leica X2 Smurf are legal reasons (the Smurfs belong to a Belgian company) but not the respect for the Leica brand:

Leica X2 Schlumpf

But the attempt to wow young photographers for Leica products is a great idea in our eyes:

Leica Arielle

Disney World Wetzlar

The plans’ absolute low-point is to rename the new ”Leitz Park” to “Disney World Wetzlar”! And the blog reveals discussions if the area will be used as  production site or will become a theme park.

Leica – Quo Vadis?

Every Leica fan must be shocked by these news: The icon of German engineering art in the hands of an US entertainment enterprise. But we should give this cooperation a chance: At first glimpse the target groups of Leica and Disney don’t fit. But both brands stand for iconic masterpieces of the 20th century. Why shouldn’t joined technical and creative forces bring up a new pictorial language for the new century?

And the Leica Forum?

Of course we will accompany how things evolve in Solms, Wetzlar and from now on in Burbank. Our first step will be to check all Leica products how deep the cooperation already influenced the product development.

The photo on the right side proves that Disney was already involved into the Leica Monochrom development. If you press the Menu button for 17-18 seconds and immediately after that the Play button a Disney promotion screen shows up.

Please check your cameras if more hidden “features” were built into your gear!

  • Can you find more key stroke combinations leading to Disney ads?
  • Suspicious files on your memory cards?
  • Artefacts or color shift in your images resulting in Disney style photos?

Please post your results in the Leica Forum!

Say Hello To Burbank!

In my opinion we – as the community of Leica owners – should also send a positive signal to the new Leica owners in Burbank. We have prepared a handicraft instruction for a Leica Disney welcome set:

  1. Download template
  2. Print out
  3. Cut out and fix it to a headband
  4. Shoot your photo and post it in the Leica forum!

We’ll combine all images to a big mashup and present it to the new Leica management

We need your support!

Welcome to Wetzlar!

About the Author

Andreas is Photo Enginer and lives in Bonn, Germany. He runs the international Leica Forum, the Systemkamera Forum (about CSC cameras) and the Fuji X Forum. Google+

Related Posts

156 Responses

  1. Alex Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April 1st !!

  2. William Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fools!

  3. Tim Wortman Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice one Andreas!

  4. Paul Reading Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Well done.

  5. Malcolm Onley Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice one. April 1st!

  6. Laica Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    1 April ;) good one !

  7. Wilwahabri@hotmail.com Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Almost, but not quite, as convincing as BBC Nationwide’s April 1st offering of the bubble powered engine of many years ago!

  8. Tony H Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    HaHa,
    April fools.
    Didn’t know you shared in this annual humour
    Nice one
    Tony

  9. KT Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April Fool’s Day :)

  10. Graeme Hutton Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Very funny Andreas!

  11. Christiaan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Haha, you almost had us there… well done. April Fools!

  12. Andrew Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April 1 to you too.

  13. Laurance Marvin Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    what should really scare you is that Leica core senior management and stock holders see Leica only as a gimmick ! It is not an “icon” to Disney. Management at LEICA’s most senior levels are more than willing to hack and deceive customers and then degrade the brand, by turning it into nothing more than a toy.

    So yes this is a horror story…made possible by LEICA management. Not for the betterment of LEICA customers. LEICA has turned it’s back also on it’s core customers…and now treats film users like second class citizens. LEICA management is only looking for it’s self interests. So now LEICA will die victim to it’s own willingness to sell it’s soul to anyone with money….I’m sure Leitz and Barnack are rolling over in their graves at this very moment. What a shame.

    • steven Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

      April Fools…

    • Allan Csiky Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

      Leitz & Barnack are rolling over all right…with laughter at poster Marvin’s oh so serious rant.

  14. Steen Bondo Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    what date is it today ?

  15. Bobby Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April fools day!

  16. euston Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Congratulations, Andreas! The Leica Disney Deal story is a classic. It ranks alongside Richard Dimbleby’s report on the spaghetti harvest. I’m looking forward to the anxious threads on the forum. Well done!

  17. Paul Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Laurance. It’s ok. Look at the date.

  18. Wolf Hess Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice try – it is the 1st of April after all – but not very funny!

  19. amalek Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April fool!!

  20. Mike Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Note today’s date.

    Good one.

  21. Daan Gonzales Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fools…. Good one…

  22. Emanuela Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Well….that’s quite a news.
    What I would be worried about is not so much the way it was done, but what will happen to the quality of the product. Leica is a niche market and people are willing to pay for its outstanding quality. However the big question is: will this hold?

  23. Marco Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Cool down guys, have a look at the date ….

    … that was funny though.

    Marco

  24. Mickey Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    WONDERFUL SPOOF!!
    I nearly fell for it – but somebody ‘goofed’ – didn’t they…. revealing such news on this particular day..
    Mickey

  25. marky Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Yeah, right.
    April’s fool day,
    something not even to be exciting of.

  26. George Morgan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fool! Ha ha.

  27. Vivek Buntwal Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April 1st

  28. Damien Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Isn’t what we call usually “easter egg” ? ;-)

  29. Wilson Laidlaw Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Andreas,

    Who’s been a busy boy on Photoshop? Well done! I imagine this has cheered us all up. I await with amusement to see the first thread from someone who has taken this seriously.

    Wilson

  30. Bart de Vries Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April fools !

  31. Paul Holland Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Great April fools! You definitely had me for 10 minutes. LOL

  32. stuart kendall Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This makes sense of the much-rumoured Limited Edition of just 101 ‘Black Dot’ M9s to be launched at next year’s world-renowned Cruft’s Dog Show. http://www.crufts.org.uk/news/crufts-2013-schedule-availability

  33. Wolfhard Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    My goodness! You nearly got me!
    Well done, Andreas!

  34. Mukul Dube Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Now I understand why my M3 quacked something like “Donald!” when the self-timer was fired with the shutter on 1/3 sec. Long range strategic planning, clearly.

  35. Damien Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Sorry… I wanted to say an “April fool’s joke”…

  36. Morten Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Gotta love April Fool’s day!:-)

  37. Nick Rogers Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Today is the 1 April….need I say more?

  38. Mtz Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Wait, which date are we???
    :-)
    Nice job!
    Nightmarish though…

  39. Aaron Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Is this an April’s fool joke?

  40. stuart kendall Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This makes sense of the much-rumoured Limited Edition of just 101 ‘Black Dot’ M9s to be launched at next year’s world-renowned Cruft’s Dog Show.

  41. Chris Tribble Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice one Andreas – as ever, the devil is in the detail. We noted you launched this on April 1 :)

  42. stanjan0 Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Hay guys, please remember that today is April First in America that translates to “APRIL FOOLS DAY” Don’t for a minute believe the above BS, I don’t!!!!

  43. Chris Simmons Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This had me going for a few moments. Well done, an excellent prank.

  44. paulb Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    its Canon that make all the Mickey Mouse cameras today – this will be a change of strategy.
    Paul 1/4/13

  45. jc_braconi Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It smells of “fried” fishes around …

  46. Happysnapper Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Leica, a “Mickey Mouse” product?

  47. Donald Duck Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Are you muppets aware it’s April the 1st? As in April fool’s day? Wakey, wakey num nuts!

  48. Donald Barnat Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    APRIL FOOLS!!!

  49. Brian Davies Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    APRIL FOOL! :)

  50. PiRIUS Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This HAS to be a sick “April Fool’s Day” Joke!!!

    • boyan_d Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

      @PiRIUS

      You wish !
      It smells a hell of a lot scarily SERIOUS to me.

      Dude.

      My Leica’s warranty is still good for a year and a half. If I am fast enough I can sell it for a good price before the announcement is official. Thank god this forum scooped the info.

      Thank you Àñdréà`s Jùrgèñsëñ. Outstanding journalism.

  51. Pete Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice one. Sounds like the Mickey is being played here. April 1.

  52. david Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Yes, it is April 1st, isn’t it? Trouble is, in Australia it’s well after 12.00 noon, so the joke’s on you.

  53. Paulj03 Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Brilliant! I connected Leica m9 to ipad via usb cable. I monitored the network traffic from the ipad to try to confirm the findings and to see if i could trap the msgs themselves with my homegrown packet capture app. The plot thickens.

    I found that indeed network traffic increased but even more interesting that it was only metadata! It was in a strange xml format and encoded in a strange, well, non-english language. I wondered where the data tom the metadata was. To make a long story short, the usb cable was acting like an antenna and the data were the images themselves. Images were being transmittted wirelessly.

    But to where. The strange thing about the packets were the msg lengths – not using standard tcpip but some other protocol like udp. Who could pick these msgs up? Mynthought turned to google and those streetview cars driving around but that is pure speculation. If google can do it so can disney.

    Then who has this kind of technology – RIM! Secure separate network for msging. Their playbook tethers to their blackberry to access internet using bluetooth!

    Why? Is this a plot to locate rich or passionate photographers the world over for theivery purposes. Or a strange effort to do a “leica -day in the life” book by some publisher like phaiden. More intrigue, the language seemed Asian.

    Then it struck me that it might be north korean since they have been hacking south korea lately. Could it be that kim jong un is trying to be the next Medvedev? A world leader trying to be a leica wannabe but no leica or trying to sell a photo for millions or billions?

    Putting 2 and 2 together. Didn’t google ceo visit north korea recently? Dennis Rodman? Anybody know what phone Dennis is carrying – perhaps new Z10? Why the m9 and not anither leica? I don’t own R or S, so can not check. No traffic on dlux6.

    Look for disney to buy rim or vive versa and follow dennis rodman marketing deals!

    Willing to share the metadata – on special, today only! Plot continues..

  54. viramati Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April 1st

  55. Mitra Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Erm… April’s fool perhaps?!

  56. Pietro Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Ahahahahah, nice April’s fool :-)

  57. josé Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Poisson d’Avril!!

    Trés bien!

  58. Geoff Hopkinson Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Took me a Paragraph to wake up….Can I get the Ariel Mermaid Vulkanit on my M????

  59. Paulj03 Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Brilliant! I connected Leica m9 to ipad via usb cable. I monitored the network traffic from the ipad to try to confirm the findings and to see if i could trap the msgs themselves with my homegrown packet capture app. The plot thickens.

    I found that indeed network traffic increased but even more interesting that it was only metadata! It was in a strange xml format and encoded in a strange, well, non-english language. I wondered where the data to the metadata was. To make a long story short, the usb cable was acting like an antenna and the data were the images themselves. Images were being transmittted wirelessly.

    But to where. The strange thing about the packets were the msg lengths – not using standard tcpip but some other protocol like udp. Who could pick these msgs up? My thought turned to google and those streetview cars driving around but that is pure speculation. If google can do it so can disney.

    Then who has this kind of technology – RIM! Secure separate network for msging. Their playbook tethers to their blackberry to access internet using bluetooth!

    Why? Is this a plot to locate rich or passionate photographers the world over for thievery purposes. Or a strange effort to do a “leica -day in the life” book by some publisher like phaiden. More intrigue, the language seemed Asian.

    Then it struck me that it might be north korean since they have been hacking south korea lately. Could it be that kim jong un is trying to be the next Medvedev? A world leader trying to be a leica wannabe but no leica or trying to sell a photo for millions or billions?

    Putting 2 and 2 together. Didn’t google ceo visit north korea recently? Dennis Rodman? Anybody know what phone Dennis is carrying – perhaps new Z10? Why the m9 and x2 and not anither leica? I don’t own R or S, so can not check. No traffic on dlux6.

    Look for disney to buy rim or vice versa and follow dennis rodman marketing deals!

    Willing to share the metadata – on special, today only! Plot continues..

  60. GK Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Here I quote Ariel from “The Little Mermaid”:

    “I don’t know when, I don’t know how
    but I know something’s starting right now
    Watch and you’ll see, someday I’ll be
    part of your world.”

    Nicely done, especially the eared logo :)

  61. Marc Williams Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    BTW, it is heavily rumored that Leica will also issue new firmware for the M Monochromatic enabling color. Disney doesn’t do B&W anymore.

    -Marc

  62. Bob Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    I’m getting tired of these childish April fools games,

  63. Robert Shaw Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Quality erosion has been getting worse since the 80′s, it would be nice to think Leica would not let go for the “selling up” option.
    I wonder how long it will take them to find a cheaper way to make the lenses…..

    But then luckily for all….its April the first !!!

  64. donald barnat Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    50lux picks up the story. We’re running with it.

  65. A. P. Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    A lot of work behind this lol nice one :D

  66. Lee Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    APRIL FOOL …………….

  67. Les_Sismore Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Gotcha!!

  68. Harry Briels Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Absolutely not a very nice April joke!

  69. David Killick Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Looking forward to the new models! The alignment with the entertainment industry makes a lot of sense. This really shouldn’t come as a surprise. Remember, Leica launched a Snow White M8 a few years ago. In fact, there has been a connection between Disney and Leica for years. Disneyland’ famous castle was modeled on Neuschwanstein in Germany — not a million miles from Wetzlar!

    The Mickey Mouse logo in place of the red dot will look good. Perhaps there should be a choice of red or black ears? I am sure there will have to be a new Leica Minnie model. and can we expect a Nemo underwater camera?

  70. Nigel Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Well I am the only one to see that this is an April fool? Surely not?!

  71. Monkey boy Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    I hope they bring out a new M “mickey ear” viewfinder attachment

  72. AndyBarty Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It’s not surprising. I saw it coming.

    Leica Goofed with the M8 and the Mickey Mouse management introduced the IR filters. Then, the introduced the Snow White version for wedding photographers.

    Following that, they associated themselves with the Seven Dwarves: Seal, Overgaard, Kim, byBrett, Jono, Tribble and Mein.

    They often reflect on the time when Walt Disney was a lad and Magnum photographers actually used Leica M cameras.

    Since Donald Duck took over the company, there’s been nothing but cartoons for strategy.

    Heigh Ho

    Barty

  73. Ian Porter Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April Fools Day! Me Leica!

  74. Glen Tarsan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Rejoice!
    The future of Leica is secure at last!!!

  75. Mike Marlow Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Fantastic April Fool’s Day spoof – the work that’s gone into this (congratulations!) has resulted in a piece of ‘journalism’ of which Pulitzer would have been proud…and who says the Germans have no sense of humour??

    Well done to all concerned.

    ps – if this is true after all, I’m organising demos – pm me.

  76. Treehousedaddy Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Ha ha, an excellent April Fool’s joke. Very good.

  77. David Strachan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Hahahah, a very obvious “April Fool” prank…don’t panick folks, all will be revealed.

  78. Murat Solakoglu Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Haha… Nice joke on April 1

    Regards

  79. Pietro Cozzi Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Great 1 april joke!!!!

  80. ASpes Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    as McDonald’s adverts go … I’m loving it.

  81. Eire Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Haha “an IT security expert, feeded the name “yrvpn-pnzren.qvfarl” into a decoding software”, good one!

  82. Andy C Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Hi , we’ll that explains why my new Vario Elmar S 30-90 just laid a Egg !!! (Minnie Duck that is) Donald you cheeky chappy!!

  83. Woody Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    And the next Leica Historical Society will meet at Pismo Beach, CA to shoot Cinderella…er……….Cinderella shoot

  84. eddie maes Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    .
    I would hardly believe that these Dwarves at Disney’s could handle a Giant like Leica…
    8-)
    .

  85. Jenny Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Nice April Fool’s joke!! Clever stuff :-)

  86. David Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Hi
    are you sure about this. I remember this here http://www.corporate.leica-camera.com/investor_relations/financial_reports/2012/index.html

  87. Patrick Delaney Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Old news! We knew it when Leica brought out Mickey Mouse X2s at last year’s Photokina. Come to that, when a ‘salesman’ overrode the designers and insisted on Mickey Mouse half ears on the sides of the X1.

  88. Patrick Delaney Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Appropriately the Mickey Mouse X2s have Easter egg colours, too!

  89. Henry Miner Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    The usual April 1st silliness, but unfortunately, the V-Lux 40 is still here.

  90. MORE2C Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Being up front in the clock stakes, I have had a few more hours to remember despite being Easter Montag it is still APRIL ONE “Good one’

  91. Alex Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April fools day….

  92. aik Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    LOL, must be april 1th

  93. TerryB Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Come on guys, it’s 1st April. April Fool on all those who’ve fallen for it!

  94. Stephan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Oh ! April Fool’s…Thats a nice one. Cheers!

  95. Rena Pearl Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    If it is true, and personally I hope it is not, I think that the quality of the products will go down. Can you just imagine having a Leica M made in China!

  96. alan Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fools! You got me there for a second!

  97. Tim Wortman Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This has to be the best April fools day construct since the BMW advertisement (some years ago) claiming that the superb aerodynamic qualities of their cars meant that you could drive through a car-wash with the sunroof open, and the interior would remain dry. Congratulations Andreas.

  98. Mark Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Would that then make the Leica Forum the Mickey Mouse Club?
    Happy April Fools, which by the way, is my birthday :-) No foolin’.
    Mark

  99. Andre Cadet Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Sir/Ms: I bought my first Leica (M3 w/1.4 Sumilux and MR meter) in 1966 In Franhfurt!!!! AND IT IS STILL GOING STRONG!!!! The decline and fall of America is happening!!! NOW the decline and fall of LEICA!!!!! WHAT MOTIVATED THIS DECISION??? GREED???? LIKE EVEYTHING ELSE???? I AM SADDENED!! Is there any possiblity that Leica owners and purists could form a company to stop this maddness and KEEP LEICA == LEICA!!!! WHAT IS NEXT? MY WIFE BEING BOUGHT OUT BY A BILLIONAIRE!!! TEARS!!!!

  100. Antony A Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Thank you, Andreas, for breaking ‘The Wetzlar Code’, and sharing The Truth with your fellow members of the Forum Cloister.
    I have often pondered on the significance of the mystical ‘M’. What does it MEAN?? Research has yielded no conclusive result.
    ‘M is for Milestone’? – according to the latest Leica publicity material. Possibly.
    M for Maestro? The new image processor. Wrong!
    M is for Multifunctional? A good guess, but again: niet.
    M ist für Messsucherkamera? Nein! Nein! Nein!
    … Much too obvious. (A red herring to mislead the gullible.)
    But, now, at last the shroud is torn asunder and – we know:
    M is for Maus / Mouse.

    Andreas’ account – his relentless and cunning Quest through the labyrinth of clues; the final conquest – is worthy of much earlier sagas.
    For, surely, Leica – with its chivalrous dedication to purity, integrity and excellence – has always been The Holy Grail of photographers.
    So it is only right and fitting that it has, after vanquishing – and so heroically – so many tests and challenges, come to find its new home in a mighty and legendary fortress whose high turrets and shining white ramparts are topped with coloured streaming penants. Schloss Disney!
    No doubt the deal will be sealed at Mickelmaus … Viva ‘M’ickey!
    8:•D

  101. kikii Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    great story line…happy first of April to you.

  102. Ash Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Good one for the all fools’ day…

  103. heiner Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    very bad news!! I have very bad experience dealing with them, Uncle Dagobert (guess this was his name, the rich guy) always wanted to pay half and get something for free.

    The sensors of the Ms will shrink, Noctilux made of plastice – that,s the future!

    BR
    Heiner

  104. Andy Cheung Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April Fool’s Day

  105. alfonz Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    One could have guessed it from looking at the m-camera forum.

  106. Ansie Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Happy April fool?

  107. Colin Clarke Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    The other detail from the code: when you use any Leica henceforth, you always have to wear Mickey Mouse ears, and on April Fool’s Day, you also have to carry a Leica Min(n)ie.

    Hey, Disney ain’t so bad … “when you wish upon a star … makes no difference to Like Ahh …”

  108. Steve Platz Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Also, check out Google Smell, gents!

  109. Carroll Glass Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Well done, enjoyable April first post with much fun.

  110. Chris minnick Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    My X2 has been hacked by Looney tunes, Marvin the Martian… Every Image I make is a photo of Marvin. This just started today, April 1st. What is going on???

  111. WETSU Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fool!

  112. Julian Paren Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It is strange that the big stories all break on the same day of the year.

  113. richard handwerk Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    if the u.s. takes over leica that is the death knell.

  114. Jeremy Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    As Chris points out, the date is critical, the day when black holes ope

  115. Apo-Ron Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Good One, Andreas!

    Auch ein Monochrom-Sondermodell ist geplant:

    Robert-Capa-Edition, durch die Kugelmuehle gejagt, nicely brassed.

  116. Rob O Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fool:)

  117. Yossi Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Very good April fool’s story

  118. Dmitry Goldgaber Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Quite elaborated April 1st joke!

  119. David Meltzer, M,D, Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    hi all, this is April 1st!

  120. Charles Woodhouse Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    I see this a natural progression. Leitz has been making Mickey Mouse cameras since they abandoned the core Oskar Barnack design in 1954 and introduced the over designed Leica M3. Eleven years later they brought out their much vaunted Single Lens Reflex, the Leicaflex and the world asked, is this IT. A grossly over complicated and outdated design that couldn’t even offer a 100% viewfinder.
    A few years ago a friend lent me a Nikon D80 and a Leica M8 to compare. The Nikon was a joy to use and I produced some great photos, but the Leica was a pig and my photos looked amateurish.
    I own about fifty pre M3 Leicas and they are beautifully ergonomic little tools, but Leica jumped on the Disney bandwagon nearly sixty years ago and such is their fate.

  121. ARNOLD CRANE Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This must be some sort of an April Fools Joke!!!!!

  122. metanous Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    You had me until Disney World Wetzlar! Tho’ the newly branded shocking pink cameras should have been a clue. I thought “no way! O wait–it’s April 1st!!!”

    Nice work! From the creative mind of Leica, of course! Always a pleasure.

  123. Conrad Stahly Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    April Fool!

  124. Michael Shapiro Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Do they celebrate April Fool’s Day in Germany?

  125. Richard Walker Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Hey Guys – This is very disturbing news, but then I reminded myself of the date today – I suspect you’ve all been had on April Fool’s day

    Regards

    RSW

  126. Paul Luisada Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Indeed, it is, after all, April 1
    A well-documented story. I’d personally like the mouse ears on the red dot, but only on the cameras that carry one.
    A deal like this would give Leica a lot of financial resources, so we won’t have to worry about the Duesenberg Syndrome, even if hard times are going away.

  127. Ray Putin Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    This is great news.
    Now we will be able to buy Chinese made Leica at Walmart for $10. Hopefully it will still have the red dot.

  128. Eduardo A Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    APRIL 1
    FOOLS DAY LOL

  129. Michael Cienfuegos Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    I just noticed the date. April Fools!

  130. HenryT Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    A lot of effort for April Fools Day!

  131. Chinka Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    My source within Solms just comfirmed that Hello Kitty will be the new owner of Leica. Kaumann lost interest in cameras and is using the capital influx to start a dildo company cause it finds more pleasure in it – the ultimate german simplicity and engineering, a tool for a lifetime, built like a tank, wheater sealed, it records video with an adapter for the venerable R lenses for your own pleasure. All manual. Silent – the only sound you will encounter is going to be your own heavy breathing.
    Limited Hermes edition leather gimp mask. Ya Klaus ich spritze!

  132. Domingo Martín Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It all makes sense now. I recently saw a group of little children with colorful plastic Leicas and puppets popping out from the lenses while making funny noises. I couldn´t believe my eyes but now I understand: they probably were Leica secret beta testers.

  133. Martin Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It’s an April Fool’s Day joke. Disney is a public company and would have to declare all of this. April Fool.

  134. Geoff Goldberg Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    I always thought the IR filters on the M8 were rather mickey-mouse.

    Happy April fools day!

  135. Ric den Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    How could they sell out to those Americans?

  136. Mark Armenante Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Well done Andreas

  137. Stephen Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Very well done! Now get back to making some M cameras.

  138. Cerrito Kid Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    It is amazing the mischievous things people can do now that they no longer have to spend those long, lonely hours in the darkroom. nicely done.

  139. JBA Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Brilliant!

  140. Gaby Rinzler Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Quit an elaborate April fools day prank???????????????

  141. Roberto Apr 01, 2013 - Reply

    Very clever!!!!!!!

  142. Andy C Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    No Comment !!

  143. Sönke Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    Super, Ammo! Lange nicht so gelacht!
    Lg
    Sönke

  144. Kim Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    Hook. Line. & Sinker! Only after I was trying to explain the magnificent feat of discovery by these techy people! I’ll be glad when 4/2 is here!

  145. Dana Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    That was awesome!
    Thank you.

  146. Hugivza Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    Well done – an excellent spoof!

  147. Johnnyj Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    Thank you, Andreas! The first couple of paragraphs were a fright. But then it started to be apparent. By the end, I was laughing so hard that I had tears in my eyes. Good Lord, someone has got far too much time on their hands! It’s the best laugh that I have had in a while. The deadpan picture with you in the “ears” was almost too much to take over breakfast. Coffee came out my nose, yuk!

  148. translunar Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    My heart leapt into my throat for a minute or two there. Was absolutely devastated. Very best and worst April Fools yet!

  149. Jon Donahue Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    And there I thought we’d see a hostile takeover by Kodak!

  150. James Lewis Apr 02, 2013 - Reply

    This really was fun … nothing more ironic, especially visually, than the combination of Leica & Mickey Mouse.
    Leica (is) Mickey Mouse! Now that *is* Goofy!

  151. Robert Parker Apr 04, 2013 - Reply

    I think they should make the X2 ‘Mickey’ edition with the purple top – it looks great !!

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