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Sign of the End Times...

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the Playmobil Security Check Point.


Yes, it's real. However, the Amazon customer reviews (see link) are a riot. Check it out quickly before the item gets pulled!

tacit, this reminds me of your recent baggage inspection. timestheyare, your turn is next!

It's my sincere hope that, with the recent change in administration, crap like this will soon become a relic of a bygone era. At least I can hope...

Comments

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
james_the_evil1
Jan. 26th, 2009 05:06 am (UTC)
:-O

DAAAAAAAAAAAAAMN

And yeah, those reviews are great
geodiaz
Jan. 26th, 2009 10:55 pm (UTC)
They are a German toy company, they have very very VERY few products that sell in the US. If this is any kind of statement it's a German statement about Germany.

Playmobil isn't even remotely American, at all, in any sense of the concept. How people can be so unaware of the rest of the world outside of US borders amazes me.
datan0de
Jan. 27th, 2009 12:58 am (UTC)
I'll admit that I'm a few decades out of the loop on toy marketing for toddlers, but I grew up surrounded by Playmobil toys. Whether the company is German or not does not change the fact that for our generation at least Playmobil was/is a childhood fixture, much like LEGO (another non-American company).

Between Playmobil and Playmobil USA (which I would presume could be considered "american, at all, in any sense of the concept") Amazon.com currently offers 715 different toys in the US. A quick search of Amazon.de shows 1,340 hits, which would imply that more than half of their extensive product line is sold in the US. To me that's a far cry from "very very VERY few products".

Given that the link I posted is to the American version of Amazon, offering this product to the American market, I don't see how you're drawing the conclusion that the people writing humorous reviews are "so unaware of the rest of the world outside of US borders".
geodiaz
Jan. 27th, 2009 02:17 pm (UTC)
Simple, go to any american retail store and look for playmobil. Once you find the display compare it to the shelf space of american made toys. Barbie has whole rows, playmobil has half a shelf if you're really, really lucky.

Next time you go to Europe check out a german toy store, where playmobil is almost all you can find (as popular as mattel is here).

My point is these are not made for american children they are simply "sold here also", look at the police sets and tell me if they are US police officers. Hell even the little guy going through the checkpoint looks like Hans of the techno twins.

By comparison Lego real does have a full american line of toys unlike playmobil who has their german toys in american packages for sale in the US.

Regardless as to your need to attack what is a clear statement about american ignorance, the point is that that toy is made for Germans and happens to also sold in the US. It's like Anime, it's japanise and they bring it over here- but in the end it's still japanise.
datan0de
Jan. 27th, 2009 10:31 pm (UTC)
Seriously? Your argument is to compare shelf space between Playmobil and the largest selling toy franchise in the world? Mattel is the largest toy company in the world, and Barbie accounts for 80% of their revenue. I would expect Barbie to have greater shelf space, regardless of what country their respective manufacturers reside in. (As an ironic aside, Barbie is based on a German doll named Bild Lilli.)

Your statement "that toy is made for Germans and happens to also sold (sic) in the US" similarly doesn't hold water. According to Playmobil's own web site, 60% of their revenue is from exports. They're a German company, but their market is global.

"Hell even the little guy going through the checkpoint looks like Hans of the techno twins."
That you're using an American caricature of a German stereotype to buttress your claim boggles my mind.

Regardless, none of this gives justification for you to look down your nose at the commenters on Amazon as being ignorant. The security checkpoint scenario depicted in the toy is hardly a uniquely German scene, a fact which clearly hasn't eluded Playmobil given that it's included in the half of their product line that they sell in the US. If security checkpoints didn't strike a chord in the American market then then the product wouldn't be sold here and there wouldn't be any customer reviews. The comments on Amazon are entirely appropriate. There's no ignorance being displayed there beyond what you're projecting onto the commenters.
geodiaz
Jan. 28th, 2009 12:52 am (UTC)
OK, here's the 2008 press release:

http://store.playmobilusa.com/on/demandware.store/Sites-US-Site/en_US/Link-Page?cid=FACTS2008_en

They do make a large share of revenue from exports, but not from exports to the US. It's from Europe, Asia, Mexico- the US isn't even mentioned. To think that because their website stated that 60% of their revenue is from exports meant that any significant portion was from US sales or marketing is simply more American ignorance.

Also pointing out my hatred of Eurotrash fashion does not effect the fact that I'm right, it just points out that I am indeed an asshole. :)

Point is Americans are guilty of thinking that it's all about us and are ignorant of the rest of the world and this is a yet another example of it. I look down my nose at no one, I simply point out the obvious. I'm mean, how many people do you know that even have a passport?
(Deleted comment)
geodiaz
Jan. 28th, 2009 02:02 pm (UTC)
Re: Are you really a jackass?
?? I read eric's journal and several others all the time. The HP Etch-a-Sketch laptop was awesome and I shared that with all my coworkers. I'm not "trolling", I made a statement, it (not me) got poked with a stick, I defended my statement, that too was poked with a stick, etc... Calling me names for making a comment and standing behind my statement and providing reasons why I see what I see really is asinine.

Maybe I'm just being crazy here, but I do research a person, place, or thing before forming an opinion on it.
datan0de
Jan. 28th, 2009 04:10 am (UTC)
LOL! I'm sorry, I hadn't realized that your intention was to assert that I'm ignorant. The quoted text below has corrected my oversight.

"To think that because their website stated that 60% of their revenue is from exports meant that any significant portion was from US sales or marketing is simply more American ignorance."
To think that that's the point I was making is simply illiteracy. Reread my previous comment. I was pointing out that their toys are not intended exclusively for the German market, with foreign sales as an afterthought. However, I should point out that the a single press release neglecting to mention the US market does not mean that the US market is negligible.

"Also pointing out my hatred of Eurotrash fashion does not effect the fact that I'm right"
I agree that it does not affect the truth value of your conclusion that the Amazon comments are indicative of American ignorance.

"Point is Americans are guilty of thinking that it's all about us and are ignorant of the rest of the world"
No, the point is that you're making a gross overgeneralization about a heterogenous country based a single web page that doesn't even support your conclusion. While you're entitled to hold whatever bias you like for whatever reason suits you, when you bring it to my journal I'm going to call you on it.

"I'm mean (sic), how many people do you know that even have a passport?"
I've never thought to poll my friends and co-workers on such a trivial detail, though I imagine that a sizable number of them do. However, even if none of them did it would not support your claim of ignorance. The continental US is twice the size of the entire European Union. If I'm in any random EU country I'm likely to be an hour's drive from 4 or 5 other countries. In the US it's a different matter entirely, and possession of a passport does not convey "worldliness" any more than it conveys the ability to spell "Japanese". Likewise, traveling to other countries extensively, while certainly beneficial, is not a prerequisite to having a healthy perspective on the world.
geodiaz
Jan. 28th, 2009 02:20 pm (UTC)
American ignorance, or Americentrism, or whatever term anyone wants to use for it wasn't ment to assert that you are an ignorant person- it's something that a huge number of americans suffer from. It's not intentional ignorance, it's a condition of our collective culture.

While I can't spell Japanise I know thats not that nations name, it's an english translation. They call their country Nippon, in english we changed it. Which leads me to a story about the first time I encountered this ignorance in my life. I was a kid on vacation in Mexico and a American in a t shirt shop pointed out to his kids how stupid Mexicans are that they can't even spell the name of their own country- because the shirt said Mejico.

Anyways I'm done defending what I still see a clear and informed statement. Take it for what you will. I don't want this to devolve into name calling anymore than it already has.

This did lead me to question something: Lego's. I looked up the Indiana Jones playsets to see if they made Lego Nazis and they tastefully left them without markings or anything that clearly made them Nazis. No Anne Frank playsets coming from Europe anytime soon most likely.

joreth
Jan. 27th, 2009 02:50 am (UTC)
Going through Customs to get back home after my cruise last week, my bag caused a suspicious officer to flag it for searching.

So they opened it up and started rummaging through my bag.

The woman found my switchblade knife and casually tossed it aside saying "one pocket knife".

Then she moved stuff around, messed with my folded clothes, and pulled out my Hitachi Magic Wand. She held it up high and asked, loudly, "what's this?"

So I said, equally loud, "it's a vibrator."

She quickly put it back and cleared my bag for checkin.
terriaminute
Jan. 28th, 2009 03:48 am (UTC)
Heeheeheehee. You can't write this stuff. You have to have lived it. Priceless.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )