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Thread: Toyguru Update on 2013 Subscriptions

  1. #2276
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegaGearMax View Post
    Do you guys care if the 2013 are late, if the subscription deadline was extended?
    I'd much rather have late figures than no figures at all!
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  2. #2277
    Heroic Warrior Inhibitor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penny Dreadful View Post
    I'd much rather have late figures than no figures at all!
    Wouldn't they pull out all the stops if the alternative was no 2013 line? It's a strange stance to take. Being late is always better than never!
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  3. #2278
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkkosis View Post
    I wonder if Power-Con will even go through if we end up with that depressing news!
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  4. #2279
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheelor View Post
    Yes power on is not funded by or affiliated with Mattel. They simply are there.
    I know that, I was just being a little sarcastic...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Inhibitor View Post
    Wouldn't they pull out all the stops if the alternative was no 2013 line? It's a strange stance to take. Being late is always better than never!
    My take on this, purely from my own experience...

    Usually factories produce different toy lines, including lines from different companies. So you usually have to reserve slots for production. Just a guess, but it's possible Mattel already reserved a slot in production earlier that they have in previous years and they can't change it, especially as they are a line with a lower run.
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  6. #2281
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    So it's late. And I am, as they say, less than sober.

    But let me just throw this idea out there:

    What if someone were to purchase 500 or even 1000 subs right now?

    And then a few months from now....oh, I don't know...maybe right before the new year arrives....oops! They sort of cancelled their credit card?

    Hell, there's a 50/50 chance Digital Dimbulbs would do it for you.

    To quote from the great Toyguru, "Problem resolved!"

  7. #2282
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    Perhaps I'm remembering incorrectly, but didn't TG reveal more characters from the DCIE sub last year when the sub was in dire need of subscribers? I seem to remember that's how Poison Ivy was revealed...

  8. #2283
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    Originally Posted by chrisware

    So it's late. And I am, as they say, less than sober.

    But let me just throw this idea out there:

    What if someone were to purchase 500 or even 1000 subs right now?

    And then a few months from now....oh, I don't know...maybe right before the new year arrives....oops! They sort of cancelled their credit card?

    Hell, there's a 50/50 chance Digital Dimbulbs would do it for you.

    I thought about people doing this as well. It's dishonest but if all we are talking about is numbers to get the year okayed well....

    At least there would be a lot of day of sale stock.

  9. #2284
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    Quote Originally Posted by Balthus Dire View Post
    Perhaps I'm remembering incorrectly, but didn't TG reveal more characters from the DCIE sub last year when the sub was in dire need of subscribers? I seem to remember that's how Poison Ivy was revealed...
    It's possible she was next in line to be sculpted and cemented in the sub, just not ready to be shown.

  10. #2285
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    Quote Originally Posted by Straight Edge View Post
    You're completely and totally *wrong*.

    Today, I had to have my Editorial team, and my company's legal advisor, review and approve a standard text response for my Customer Service team. 4 people had to sign off on it before we could add it to our chat reply database. The text that needed approval?

    "Thank you for your patience!"

    TWO of them questioned whether we should use an exclamation point, as it might read that our reps were yelling.

    Scott is not only being incredibly honest, but anyone that refuses to believe him is just looking for problems. Welcome to corporate America, people. Hands tied and mouths gagged. You make money by keeping it close to the vest. "Snitches get stitches", as my boss likes to say.
    The convoluted approvals required by your company and what it authorizes representatives to say has nothing to do with listing figures.

    The reason (presumably) your company does this is to approve what communications many different people have to standardize.

    It has nothing to do with releasing the names of figures that we will be purchasing, since according to Scott himself they are "locked in".

    It's simply because they would rather you sub blind, because if you saw the list you might not find many you want and choose not to subscribe.

    It's no more complicated than that.

  11. #2286
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    Quote Originally Posted by EtherianChronicles View Post
    The convoluted approvals required by your company and what it authorizes representatives to say has nothing to do with listing figures.

    The reason (presumably) your company does this is to approve what communications many different people have to standardize.

    It has nothing to do with releasing the names of figures that we will be purchasing, since according to Scott himself they are "locked in".

    It's simply because they would rather you sub blind, because if you saw the list you might not find many you want and choose not to subscribe.

    It's no more complicated than that.
    Yes. It could be the big, bad, manipulative corporation choosing to mislead their customer. Or, we could be in the real world, and they could be protecting themselves from uncontrollable circumstances that would require they adjust who is sold in a particular month.
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  12. #2287
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    Quote Originally Posted by EtherianChronicles View Post
    The convoluted approvals required by your company and what it authorizes representatives to say has nothing to do with listing figures.

    The reason (presumably) your company does this is to approve what communications many different people have to standardize.

    It has nothing to do with releasing the names of figures that we will be purchasing, since according to Scott himself they are "locked in".

    It's simply because they would rather you sub blind, because if you saw the list you might not find many you want and choose not to subscribe.

    It's no more complicated than that.
    It's kind of fruitless to dispute unless you're on an inside track. The situation is too far gone for name-dropping to help anyway. We got 4 more vintage confirmations for 2013 year (Snakeface, 1 more POP, 2 NA) out of 9 regular slots. Barring a miracle of viral marketing or corporate turnaround, we aren't going to come away with much better than we already are.
    Your support means more research for the Myostatin-challenged.

  13. #2288
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Adam's Dad View Post
    Yes. It could be the big, bad, manipulative corporation choosing to mislead their customer. Or, we could be in the real world, and they could be protecting themselves from uncontrollable circumstances that would require they adjust who is sold in a particular month.
    I'm not sure what "real world" you live on, but on the one I come from almost every corporation that exists would gladly lie, deceive, and endanger the lives of their customers as long as it resulted in more money. Even people who love big business would agree...unless they could make more money by disagreeing.

  14. #2289
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisware View Post
    I'm not sure what "real world" you live on, but on the one I come from almost every corporation that exists would gladly lie, deceive, and endanger the lives of their customers as long as it resulted in more money. Even people who love big business would agree...unless they could make more money by disagreeing.
    First of all, I feel sad for you and your bleak world. Second of all, I'm not saying every company is a shining example of business ethics-I'm just saying that not everyone is out to screw you over for more money. Granted, that may simply be to avoid bad P.R.-but it's a legitimate reason to stay on the up-and-up nonetheless.

    And look at what has happened when character slots have had to move due to manufacturing issues completely divorced form Mattel's control. People lost their crap. Maybe they are just protecting themselves from alienating their existing customers for the benefit of non-customers.
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  15. #2290
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisware View Post
    I'm not sure what "real world" you live on, but on the one I come from almost every corporation that exists would gladly lie, deceive, and endanger the lives of their customers as long as it resulted in more money. Even people who love big business would agree...unless they could make more money by disagreeing.
    Actually that is the opposite corporations like Wal-Mart have strict policies to ensure the saftey and quality of their customers. Corporations like Wal-Mart actually lose money if a customer is endanger or injured.

  16. #2291
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    Quote Originally Posted by EtherianChronicles View Post
    It's simply because they would rather you sub blind, because if you saw the list you might not find many you want and choose not to subscribe.
    I think this is funny, but I'm not sure you intended it to be.


  17. #2292
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    Just read TG new answers. All I have to say is stop telling us what you cannot do and pushing the sub. As a Brand Manager it is your job to do just that MANAGE THE LINE. Now step up, do your job and come up with a creative way to keep line going; we've all tried to help and have made numerous excellent suggestions. You say, "...buy a flipping sub..." and I say do your flipping job and think outside your limited box and make it work! Creativity and the ability to change and adapt to the situation is the key to success.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Just read TG new answers. All I have to say is stop telling us what you cannot do and pushing the sub. As a Brand Manager it is your job to do just that MANAGE THE LINE. Now step up, do your job and come up with a creative way to keep line going; we've all tried to help and have made numerous excellent suggestions. You say, "...buy a flipping sub..." and I say do your flipping job and think outside your limited box and make it work! Creativity and the ability to change and adapt to the situation is the key to success.
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  18. #2293
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Adam's Dad View Post
    And look at what has happened when character slots have had to move due to manufacturing issues completely divorced form Mattel's control. People lost their crap. Maybe they are just protecting themselves from alienating their existing customers for the benefit of non-customers.
    Well if you listen to Scott, existing subscribers are not enough to keep the line going, but there are plenty of customers left that can't/won't/don't want to sub for whatever reason. One of those reasons presented often is the 'blind buying' of figures you do not know what they will be.

    The only real delay was due to...Chinese New Year. That's been going on at the same time for, oh, quite awhile now...like several thousand YEARS. The manager of the brand failed to plan it into the schedule, and there you have a delay.

    Mattel has control, but it takes a good manager to exert it. When a vendor does not provide a company with a service as requested, there are penalties (sometimes even financial, like "fines" if they do not perform well). To pretend Mattel just throws it to the wind and sits around playing Patty Cake with everything out of their control is simply a delusion.

    Basically, if you cannot see the contradiction here, you need to take it in simple terms:

    1) Scott has said 2013 line is etched in stone, no changing anything at this point, it's not possible.

    2) Scott claims he cannot release the figures as they may be subject to change/legal/etc. (depending on what minute you ask him)

    If #1 is true, then #2 makes no sense. If #2 is true, #1 makes no sense.

    The truth is, as I said - they don't tell you because they don't want you to know. If someone is a fan of certain characters, sees that those characters are not on the list, they may not sub. The gamble is - would you lose more customers being secretive than upfront?

    The fact they do not release the names is simply a marketing ploy/gamble, nothing more.

    And what if they DID get delayed? Well, it happened this year! Demo-man, from the 2011 sub, did not ship until January 2012 for many subscribers. And Scott said, "Yup, perfectly fine legally - the figures were delivered, it doesn't promise that they won't ship until after the end of the year".

    So, in any case, none of it adds up - they at least know what 12 monthly figures will come out next year, all their names, but do not tell because they are more afraid if they tell the truth it will cost more subs than being honest and up front would.

    Welcome to one of the many reasons the subscription model fails by design.

  19. #2294
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    Quote Originally Posted by EtherianChronicles View Post
    The only real delay was due to...Chinese New Year. That's been going on at the same time for, oh, quite awhile now...like several thousand YEARS. The manager of the brand failed to plan it into the schedule, and there you have a delay.
    I know that seems simple but that's not how it actually works all the time in reality. Chinese New Year does happen every year, true, but when you're dealing with factories in China a lot can happen. Usually things are slotted in a certain order in a production line because factories produce products across several lines (or even companies) and if something goes wrong in one place it can have a domino effect. There's only so much planning they can do. And clearly it worked every other year but earlier this year. It DOES seem they were playing things a bit close, perhaps because they opened sub orders after PowerCon.

    So, this year they ARE trying to manage it better by getting stuff produced earlier and avoid delays. I think that's a good thing. It's unfortunate that is going to lead to no sub extensions, but it really does seem like they are trying to address it.

    Also, this notion that Scott/Mattel should exert more control over their vendors... well, in RGD Scott talked about Mattel doing just that by visiting one one one with the vendors in China. But you have to understand delays aren't ALWAYS directly the vendor's fault. It's entirely possible another manufacturer that uses the vendor or a different line in Mattel caused a back-up.

    I see a lot of backseat Brand Managing in these threads sometimes. But I feel like there's only a half-realization of what it's actually like to work with Chinese vendors and make products. Having a little knowledge and trying to extrapolate how this or that should be done can be a dangerous thing, especially when you have no inside insight into the actual process in Mattel. Which is why I don't try to guess at those things. I can only offer my own experiences where I work.
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  20. #2295
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    Originally Posted by Inhibitor

    We got 4 more vintage confirmations for 2013 year (Snakeface, 1 more POP, 2 NA) out of 9 regular slots. Barring a miracle of viral marketing or corporate turnaround, we aren't going to come away with much better than we already are.
    Wait! We are getting 2 NA figures this year. Well that's it now I am really not getting a sub.

    Seriously though, if subs are down 50% then does that mean that only 50% of the fan base are die hards? Wouldn't it then stand to reason that at least half is more casual? Shouldn't Mattel market/manage the line for them as well?

    I'm a backseat Brand Manager but I will front seat manage for minimum wage. Call me Mattel! .....cause I can't do any worse, haha

  21. #2296
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    i translate to spainish all the news from toy guru news, ,messages from the four horsemen and emiliano santalucia thoughts in the bigger latin forum and no one thinks or try to think that maybe this is true! i dunno why everyone there think that are scare tactics, i dunnno why they cant believe that motu dont give a good profit to mattel, motu is not barbie or hot wheelsi can see how friends of mine stopped to buy this figures and like that i know is there a lot of people, why latin people cannot believe that maybe this is real with all the info im giving?? i dont understand but they think that they willl not buy if they are pushed to do it
    i just think that if motu dies will be because of their own fans!
    how much time we waited for something like this?? how much time we asked mattel for a new toy line
    and now for 2014 we will have a only heavyu hitters and vintage figures...
    why people cant understand that yes it is more than possible that the line could end!
    on facebook pages i had a little more luck convincing people but on the forums......
    people just dont believe
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  22. #2297
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    Wait! We are getting 2 NA figures this year. Well that's it now I am really not getting a sub.

  23. #2298
    Heroic Warrior Inhibitor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FAN-DOR View Post
    Wait! We are getting 2 NA figures this year. Well that's it now I am really not getting a sub.

    Seriously though, if subs are down 50% then does that mean that only 50% of the fan base are die hards? Wouldn't it then stand to reason that at least half is more casual? Shouldn't Mattel market/manage the line for them as well?

    I'm a backseat Brand Manager but I will front seat manage for minimum wage. Call me Mattel! .....cause I can't do any worse, haha
    LOL! I don't know man. I wish I may I wish I might. The farther we get from SDCC, the less chance MOTUC has of turning the heads of a casual fan/toy collector.

    Quote Originally Posted by dark knight View Post
    i translate to spainish all the news from toy guru news, ,messages from the four horsemen and emiliano santalucia thoughts in the bigger latin forum and no one thinks or try to think that maybe this is true! i dunno why everyone there think that are scare tactics, i dunnno why they cant believe that motu dont give a good profit to mattel, motu is not barbie or hot wheelsi can see how friends of mine stopped to buy this figures and like that i know is there a lot of people, why latin people cannot believe that maybe this is real with all the info im giving?? i dont understand but they think that they willl not buy if they are pushed to do it
    i just think that if motu dies will be because of their own fans!
    how much time we waited for something like this?? how much time we asked mattel for a new toy line
    and now for 2014 we will have a only heavyu hitters and vintage figures...
    why people cant understand that yes it is more than possible that the line could end!
    on facebook pages i had a little more luck convincing people but on the forums......
    people just dont believe
    It is hard to believe! There wasn't the slightest concern during SDCC. It will be hard adjusting to the new "panic" mode.
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  24. #2299
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonWes View Post
    I know that seems simple but that's not how it actually works all the time in reality. Chinese New Year does happen every year, true, but when you're dealing with factories in China a lot can happen. Usually things are slotted in a certain order in a production line because factories produce products across several lines (or even companies) and if something goes wrong in one place it can have a domino effect. There's only so much planning they can do. And clearly it worked every other year but earlier this year. It DOES seem they were playing things a bit close, perhaps because they opened sub orders after PowerCon.
    Hey, I'm not the one blaming it. It was Scott. They were "delays caused by Chinese New Year - China shuts down for it." Those were his words.

    /shrug

    I'm just going by what the honest man says.

    Also, this notion that Scott/Mattel should exert more control over their vendors... well, in RGD Scott talked about Mattel doing just that by visiting one one one with the vendors in China. But you have to understand delays aren't ALWAYS directly the vendor's fault. It's entirely possible another manufacturer that uses the vendor or a different line in Mattel caused a back-up.

    I see a lot of backseat Brand Managing in these threads sometimes. But I feel like there's only a half-realization of what it's actually like to work with Chinese vendors and make products. Having a little knowledge and trying to extrapolate how this or that should be done can be a dangerous thing, especially when you have no inside insight into the actual process in Mattel. Which is why I don't try to guess at those things. I can only offer my own experiences where I work.
    OK, let's forget about the one real delay caused by China.

    What about Digital River? They are in the US. They had a sub page up seven months ago. Apparently they had a bug. We were told, "In a few weeks..." seven months ago. Unforeseen or not, that's a failure - I've said it before, a newborn can learn to crawl, a feature film can be shot, an entire 24-episode TV season can be written and produced - yet they can't get ONE simple webpage to work that has supposedly been years in the making?

    Here's what it comes down to : we can try to give the benefit of the doubt on this issue, or that issue. But the pattern is what is important here. Almost every aspect of this line has been bungled at one time or another, in one sense or another. He has shown CONSISTENTLY his lack of ability to actually do any more than give lip service to fans about fixes/changes/etc. - and most of it never comes true. I mean, this time he's not even bothering to say he'll fix DR up, etc. - one of the huge reasons people are not subbing and he's not even bothering to talk about them now. He couldn't, without making the same promises he made back in December/January - and the only one I can see saying it's gotten any better is...him.

    It's the pattern here, more so than each little thing. Sure, each one taken on it's own isn't a big deal - but when it's so often, so consistent, and so blatant, that's what leads to the dire situation we have right now. Although he's trying to pass it off as "it's gotten too expensive, that's why subs are down" - very few people have that as their sole reason aside from Internationals, and Scott says they are "a tiny tiny portion of the community". So if you believe him, they shouldn't be affecting sales to this drastic place. He would love to place the blame on the $5, but in truth - it's the plethora of issues that have plagued this line as long as it's been around, starting from the very design of the blind subscription system on up.

  25. #2300
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    Quote Originally Posted by dark knight View Post
    why people cant understand that yes it is more than possible that the line could end!
    on facebook pages i had a little more luck convincing people but on the forums......
    people just dont believe
    Yes, it is kind of sad how cynical everyone is.

    I act as an Art Director in a Marketing department. I appreciate that people are wary about communications from companies. They should be. I think it's great to be skeptical of what people are trying to sell you. Honestly, when all of this began I had my own share of skepticism. I know what it's like to be on the other end of crafting messages to consumers. The best companies know that it's not in their interests to intentionally deceive their customers, but there ARE unscrupulous characters and companies out there.

    But, any little nagging doubts floating around my head started disappearing days ago. It started with Scott's videos. You know, I just don't think Scott is that good of an actor. He seemed pretty genuine and direct. And in videos and on RGD is where he really shines, I think. So my "is this really a scare tactic of some kind?" thoughts were greatly diminished.

    The Four Horsemen's message totally eradicated them. If any MOTU fan STILL thinks this is a scare tactic after reading that... well, that's their right. I just don't think they know the 4H very well. I don't claim to know any of them personally, but in every single interaction I've ever read or heard about or seen between them and their fans and customers, they've never been anything but honest and open. They have no ulterior motive here.

    I really thought their message would start to sway people and start to break through the walls of cynicism I see from some fans. It seems I was sadly naive, I guess.

    But, I'll leave those fans to that. I know people have their reasons for being cynical. If all of this can't get through that, then nothing will. The only way to utterly prove them wrong would be for the line to fail and I certainly don't want that! Best to just focus on getting those people we can on board.

    My thing is, at the end of the day, I could care less about all the backstage drama. I just want my toys. I've been a very happy customer (bar some DR CS issues) and I hope I can stay one for years to come.
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