The good news is the "camera lost and found" portion of my Web site has been very popular, allowing people to submit information on digital cameras they've lost or found.
Unfortunately, that means that many readers of the About.com Cameras site -- 100 as of today -- have lost a camera, submitting their stories and hoping someone found the camera and can return it.
To commemorate the 100th lost camera listed on the site, I have compiled a special article containing tips for avoiding losing a camera ... and the tips come from those who have lost the cameras. As readers who have participated in the site's "camera lost and found" have listed the information about their lost cameras, they also have provided tips for protecting your camera and for avoiding losing a camera. And, as we all know, there's nothing like first-hand experience to help you learn a lesson.
So, although it's very unfortunate that these 100 cameras have been lost, hopefully the lessons learned by those who've submitted their "I lost my camera" stories to About.com Cameras can help you avoid repeating their mistakes.
Tips for Protecting Your Camera
Read through these tips shared by those who have lost their cameras to help you protect your camera.
Take your time and keep track of it.
Never let the camera out of your sight.
Always double-check your belongings whenever moving from one location to another.
List your contact information on the camera or in the case.
Have the first photo on the memory card be of your contact information.
Keep the camera in a purse, bag, or pocket, but avoid shallow pockets where the camera sticks out a little bit.
Download your photos often, as they are priceless.
Don't carry the camera in your hand for long periods of time, or you'll probably set it down and forget it at some point.
Have your travel partner help you create a checklist of your belongings, and check it each time you change locations.
Avoid drinking so much at a restaurant or bar that you forget about your camera. If you know you'll be drinking, consider taking a disposable camera instead.
Most people are honest, so make it easier for them to return the camera or memory card by including easy-to-find contact information.
Know the brand and color of your camera.
Carry the memory card(s) separately from the camera.
Whenever traveling by taxi, be sure to get a receipt with the cab's number on it, in case you leave anything behind.
Don't try to carry a lot of items along with your camera, or you'll probably forget something.
Make backup copies of your photos while traveling.
Send home memory cards by mail as you fill them while traveling.
When using the self-timer to shoot a photo, don't forget to pick up the camera.
Activity Occurring When Camera Was Lost
Here are the activities people were doing when the 100 cameras were lost. So, be sure to take extra care with your camera when engaging in these activities.
- Lost at a bar/restaurant/hotel/retail store: 24
- In an airport: 20
- In a taxi cab: 13
- Hiking or taking a walking tour: 11
- Traveling by car or motorcycle: 9
- At a concert or sporting event: 7
- In a bus or other type of public transportation: 5
- On a cruise ship: 3
- At an amusement park: 2
- On the beach: 2
- Camera was stolen from home: 1
- Activity not listed: 3
Brand of Lost Cameras
I'm not sure what this statistic says, other than Canon and Sony cameras appear to be popular, or people are more apt to lose that brand of camera. Here are the brands of the 100 lost cameras.
- Canon: 34
- Sony: 25
- Nikon: 9
- Olympus: 8
- Fujifilm: 5
- Kodak: 4
- Panasonic: 3
- Samsung: 3
- Casio: 1
- Flip Video: 1
- Hewlett-Packard: 1
- Panasonic: 1
- Polaroid: 1
- Unknown: 4
Color of Lost Cameras
Again, I'm not sure what this statistic says, other than black and silver cameras are the most popular. Here are the colors of the 100 lost cameras.
- Silver: 34
- Black: 32
- Red: 6
- Pink: 4
- Blue: 3
- Gray: 2
- Orange: 2
- Brown: 1
- Gold: 1
- White: 1
- Not listed: 14
Hopefully these tips can help you avoid losing your camera ... and that sickening feeling that occurs when you realize that the photos you have on the memory cards are gone and cannot be replaced.
The best advice I can emphasize is to frequently download the photos from your memory card to your computer and make plenty of backup copies of those photos. Those photos cannot be replaced if the camera is lost.