Ritz Camera Shuttering Nearly Half Their Stores

Get it? Shuttering? Developing? Oh, right, hundreds of Ritz employees are losing their livelihoods, and towns across the country are being deprived of their last standalone camera shop. This is actually extremely sad.

The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy back in February, but these 300 liquidations are the first serious manifestation of its decline. This is terrible news all around, but could have been predicted; film developing is a dead business, and the increasingly homogeneous nature of point-and-shoot cameras and the spec-centric marketing of DSLRs favors impersonal, cheap and convenient retailers like Best Buy and Walmart

And that's not to mention online retailers, bolstered by the magisterial advice of sites like DPReview—a sort of digital equivalent to the archetypal old Grizzled Local Camera Store Vet. That said, for the average consumer this is a loss—good luck asking the kid at your local Target which of their cameras has the best high-ISO noise reduction. [MarketWatch]