Wednesday, August 30, 2023

An Eighteenth Open Letter to Lifetouch School Portraits

Dear Lifetouch School Portraits,

You guys over there continue to crack me up. You sent me a survey the other day, asking about my most recent Lifetouch experience, and you referred to me as “a valued customer.”

Really? Have you not read any of the letters I’ve sent you over the years? If I’m considered a valued customer, your business is circling the drain a lot faster than I thought it was.

Your survey email read as follows:

As a valued customer, we would love to get your feedback about your most recent school photography experience with Lifetouch.

If you already completed a survey, we thank you! If you have not, and have a moment, please take this brief survey and register for a chance to win a $100 gift card.

Thank you for providing your feedback.


My immediate reaction, besides, of course, uncontrollable laughter, was “Wow, a $100 gift card? Why don’t you just offer a free 5x7 image with my next order. That’s an equivalent prize based on your pricing, and seems like it would be less paperwork on your end.”

My most recent school photography experience with Lifetouch consisted of the following: I was driving Son Number Three to his sophomore check-in day a few weeks ago, and halfway to the high school I remembered that you would have employees taking pictures that day. (I still cannot, in good conscience, refer to them as “photographers.”)

I said, “Oh, yeah, by the way, school pictures are today, too.”

He was in a semi-presentable T-shirt, but his hair was a little on the “I don’t really care about my hair today” side.

He said, “Great. Thanks for the heads up.”

Then both of us continued to not care that school pictures were happening that day. I only assume you took his picture. That’s how my most recent school photography experience with Lifetouch went.

I may not care about picture day anymore because of you, but since I do care so much about helping you improve your business model, I figured I would click on the survey link and help you out. At a minimum, I was going to hunt around for the button labeled “See any one of my previous seventeen letters.”

I couldn’t find that button. I couldn’t even find the survey. You see, Lifetouch, this is why you are so loveable, and at the same time, such an absolute bane of so many parents’ existence.

I mean, we’ve all been aware for many years now that you refuse to hire actual photographers for your photography business. But apparently, you use that same unorthodox rebellious model in every aspect of your organization, including your web team.

I clicked on the link, told you that my child was in 10th grade, hit the “next” button, and was greeted with this:  

This page can’t be found

No webpage was found for the web address: HTTP ERROR 404


You’re a school picture company that can’t figure out how to take school pictures, so I don’t know why I expected you to be able to take survey answers either.

Stay adorable!

Yours always,



Copyright © 2023 Marc Schmatjen


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  1. School pictures are like apple pie and baseball. I don't know why you hate America.

  2. Troll. Please remove this heathen.