Watches in a post-COVID world

A post about the state of watch collecting, and a discussion about ways in which people collect watches, along with the impact of these choices.

Are you a victim of marketing?

As I began seeing more Furlan Marri watches shared on Instagram, I asked myself why someone would choose this watch in the morning, when looking at their watch box. I won’t go into the background story of the brand and the reasons this is an enormously popular release; Wei Koh wrote all about it here and you can read that if you want some background.

What about vintage watches?

Earlier this week I posted about the evolution of watch collecting, and talked about what might happen next in the watch collecting hobby, as collecting evolves, and collectors experience decision fatigue. Quite a few people followed up with me asking about vintage watches, and even suggesting that vintage watches might be the next big thing – so I thought I’d share some thoughts on the topic and see what others think.

Evolution of watch collecting – where to next?

I just had a conversation with my buddy Ben (@koreahasseoul1) and I felt like the topic was worthy of a post. Incidentally he’s a pretty interesting collector, and I would urge you to chat to him too if you feel like you want some advice about your collection, or just to talk watches. I always appreciate his perspectives, and I am sure you will too. Ben and I spoke about how collecting has evolved, especially in the last two to three years.

Behavioural Economics and watch collecting

Richard Thaler, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky are the pioneers of the field called “behavioural economics”, two of them even won Nobel prizes for their work and the third would have too, if he was alive to receive it. The trio uncovered numerous ways in which people make poor decisions without knowing it. Here’s a short podcast where Thaler tells a number of stories that bring behavioural economics to life. I wanted to talk about some of their findings (again) and apply it to watch collecting in some way.

Journalism in the watch industry

I have seen messages from journalists who are being contacted directly by the collaborator in this watch release, and they are being rudely chastised for something as simple as ‘liking a meme’ about the faulty watch! These journalists are being accused of, in summary, surrendering their own impartiality, by showing support to memes about the watch. Is this how low it goes?

The “Front Page Test” for watch collectors

The “Front Page Test” is an easy ethics standard which requires asking yourself: “How would I feel if the course of action I am considering were reported on the front page of the local newspaper or in a popular blog?”. The idea is, if you feel this would be uncomfortable or create problems for you, then the best course of action is to change the intended course of action. Simple as that.

Lets talk about Unimatic Watches

With the recent launch of the three Unimatic x Hodinkee collaboration pieces, I have had the pleasure of seeing many new collectors join the Unimatic family. This could be due to the ‘dink’ effect – where anything Hodinkee launches is met with raging enthusiasm by those loyal sheeple who can’t get enough of their preppy aesthetic… but it is nevertheless a welcomed situation, as the brand deserves all the recognition it is getting, and more. I thought I would take some time to share my thoughts on the brand and why I love it.

Psychology of money – book summary and thoughts

I happened to see a book recommendation from a friend on Instagram last week, and decided to give it a whirl – I found it to be a very enjoyable read, particularly for the stories shared in this book. Morgan Housel makes the point that financial know-how is actually less of a hard science than you might think. Unlike in other fields, in finance an unknown petrol station attendant with a high school education might make millions, while a celebrated, Harvard-educated finance executive goes bankrupt. It all boils down to behaviour. Housel explores why psychology has more to do with positive financial outcomes than our math skills.

Do you like it, or do you want it?

It is likely that you have, at some time in your life, really wanted something… but upon finally getting it, felt rather disappointed. Pehaps you thought a career change was the solution to all your problems, but realised it wasn’t, once you had done it. Or perhaps you thought you’d like living in another country, but ended up regretting the move. Why does this happen? Why do we find a divergence between what we think something will be like, and the ultimate reality when we finally experience it?