Midtown Camera & Electronics
As soon as we entered Midtown, the products we encountered were practical household items, such as clocks and telephones. However, once we ventured into the store we saw many different recognizable and unrecognizable types of merchandise. Some products we found in the store were hair dryers, headphones, video games, DVDs, CDs and CD players, cassettes and cassette players, amplifiers, calculators, cameras, digital prints, and trimmers. Visiting many stores, it was very welcoming to see some companies like Revlon, SONY, Conair, and Nintendo DS.
One thing that stood out the most was the different type of media products the store sold. The first non-educational game we saw that was sold in a store was the Mario series for the Nintendo DS. However, the other games were all Jewish or educational games. No games containing violence or profanity could be found. These stocks showed the stores reaction to the supply and demand of its community, better explained in the interview with the storeowner.
The types of music sold were also limited to Jewish music. Not only was there no mainstream music, but also all the CD cover and names were written in Jewish.
We initially were interested in this store because of a particular sign outside displayed on Midtown’s window. It read New York Lottery. Being in a Hasidic enclave, we were surprised that something as addicting as gambling could be allowed. Behind the store counter hung various scratch cards and a machine checking the numbers for the Mega Millions. But it wasn’t just inside the store. Inside the store was a trashcan filled with scratch cards and Mega Million tickets.
The interview at Midtown Camera & Electronics was definitely our most insightful and helpful interviews. The storeowner was willing to answer our questions even though the store was very busy even though, once again, he refused to give us his name. When he was not dealing with a customer he answered each and every question we had for him.
We found out that the store had been around for 17 years. He stated that during these 17 years, he has kept up with the recent trends, which we found to be some what true as he had iPhone cases but was also selling cassette players. What we found out that was surprising was that he did not sell television sets.
While waiting for the storeowner when he was busy, we walked around observing the store more and was interested that the only video games that were sold we Mario and very educational games. He revealed to us that the reason why he didn’t sell any violent video games was because the only people who play video games in the community were kids and he did not want to be responsible for selling violent video games to children or to allow parents to let their children play these games.
Along with Princess Boutique, the storeowner for this store made the same exact statement about demand. When we questioned about the music that was sold in the store, he simply said, “Why sell music that the people do not listen to? It would be a waste of my money to try and sell the CD’s that people here would not listen to.” This being the second time we were hearing a variation of this concept, we were satisfied with the answers that we were able to acquire.
Right before leaving the store, we asked the storeowner if the selling of lottery was a problem in the community. He simply stated no and went about his own business.