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Editorial - Watching Watches

Editorial Watching Watches

Not everything needs to be sombre and serious in horology…

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been quietly testing out a new type of article on the site. It’s not an article in the sense that we tell you stuff and you sit there reading it (or listening to it, if you’ve downloaded our mobile app with exclusive audio articles). It’s something a lot more interactive, and — we hope! — fun.

I’m referring to a little game of Spot The Difference that we started a month ago, with a new game published every Sunday. You probably don’t need me to explain what that’s all about, but basically there are two very similar images, one of which is the original picture and the second of which is a subtly modified version of the first. As far as I know, no one’s ever done something like that before involving watch photos, but it seems such a natural fit to me. Watches are packed with details — generally speaking, someone who loves watches is also someone with a great eye for detail.

That’s why it immediately occurred to us, when we were brainstorming for ideas for new article categories, to create this sort of game. It’s the perfect combination. It’s a pretty light activity, so it’s something enjoyable for a Sunday, when you don’t quite feel like digesting a breakdown of the latest high-tech material to appear in a fine timepiece, or watching a 10-minute video about the different types of second time-zone display.

At the same time, it’s not exactly a cakewalk. I’ve made sure that the game is challenging enough that a seasoned watch enthusiast will have to exert some effort to find all the differences. And if you’re new to watches and watchmaking, there’s no better way to enhance your ability to recognise and pick up on details in a timepiece. Before we publish each installment of the game, I run it through whoever happens to be in the office. Veteran guinea pigs for this experiment include our managing editor Jordy Bellido (who represents the expert audience), our editorial interns Tania Ciccarone and lately Luna Barbosa (representing the newbie crowd) and the power duo in our commercial department, Liah Millasson and Fiona Jean-Mairet (they’re ultra-competitive and laser-focused, as you might expect from someone with a career in sales).

No one has ever taken less than five minutes to find all the differences (there are always seven differences in total), so you can rest assured that this is not some kid’s game. My advice is always to get the watch images as big as you possibly can on your screen. Zoom in as much as you need to get a good look at the images — it’s just like picking up a loupe to get a closer view of a watch.

Some people have created thriving Instagram accounts out of spotting fake watches on the internet, and this is kind of like that. Hopefully after doing enough of these, it’ll be an absolute cinch for you to tell when someone’s wearing the real deal or a cunning reproduction. Use these powers responsibly, or you could end up being the most feared guest at a party.

So far, we’ve featured watches from Louis Moinet, Genus Watches, Behrens and, just yesterday, Kerbedanz. But, I hear you say, what about doing a watch from one of the more mainstream brands, Suzanne? That wouldn’t be much of a challenge, would it? Everyone reading this knows what a Patek Philippe Nautilus looks like, or an Omega Speedmaster, or a Bulgari Octo. You guys would smash through that in less than a minute, and that’s no fun.

However, we do accept audience requests, and I’m happy to give the people what they want. After all, I’m based in Switzerland, where direct democracy is held to be the first principle of good governance. Let us know in the comments what you’d like to see next! And while you wait for next Sunday’s game, why not try the ones we’ve already published? Happy hunting!


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