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A Spirited 15 Rounds ...

The Empress Lilly

Well-Known Member
When it comes to inside info, I want to know decisions made; not who are on the ins or outs and who's fighting with whom in the corporate structure.
But...those decisions made are very much the result of that corporate infighting. It's how one comes to understand how and why TWDC makes certain decisions. For just the results, without any understanding of how they came to be, it suffices to read the Disney Parks Blog.
 

baymenxpac

Well-Known Member
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First degree battery was only mentioned because it happened to be included in the entire Orange County Jail document on Jim Hill's criminal record. The crime that was relevant to the conversation was theft. Jim had been a repeat offender for shoplifting merchandise from a gift shop inside Disney World. And he was banned from Disney property for a good while (don't know how long).

Lee brought this up because Disney lifted this ban and started to form a relationship with Jim. Jim is now a famous Disney blogger (or was, dunno if he's as well known today as a few years ago). I gather he's been mentioned in some of their official media, he gives tours and has been invited to many events including D23. Among other things.

Now it's not news that Disney has a rather large amount of amateur pro-Disney people working social media for their benefit. There's a lot of controversy around these non-employee employees however. They generally don't disclose that Disney is effectively bribing them with gifts for positive press. I've also witnessed some become hostile towards people who aren't mindlessly devoted to everything Disney does. Robb Alvey is an example. I don't know what he's up to nowadays, but back a couple of years ago he became notorious for getting into fights on Twitter or his own forums. If someone didn't like a ride he was praising, he'd call them names and ban them. It's unhealthy behavior, often resembling a drug addict/dealer situation. But Disney encourages and rewards it...

I think Lee felt Jim Hill's relationship in particular felt even more sinister and gross than the others. Almost like extortion, Disney being willing to forgive and even reward his theft as long as he plays nice and does what they tell him.

Someone had a great post in that thread about the relationship between Disney and their army of amateur bloggers-
thanks for the compliment!
 

Missing20K

Well-Known Member
Remember how he chose his current avatar to make light of the boy who was killed by the alligator at GF?
I was absent from the forums for a while and missed this completely.

Has really changed my thoughts on 74. I have no problem with lively internet forum banter, even when done in poor taste, even when it borders on "insulting." But making light of such a tragedy is a bridge too far for me. What a donkey.
 

brb1006

Well-Known Member
I don't think WDI is completely devoid of talent, but I definitely think a TON of talent has left or been fired over the years. And corporate interference sure as hell makes it hard for whoever is left to work their magic.

Very little of what Disney has done recently has impressed me. Cars Land is fantastic, Radiator Springs Racers is as well. And I love the environment of Pandora. I do really like the boat ride, but it's criminally short and does contain the flaws others have criticized it for (still like it but yeah I wish there was a lot more of it). I wasn't impressed by the simulator.

New Fantasyland was a complete mess. Little Mermaid is bland at best, arguably bad. 7DMT is kind of fun but short and has some severe flaws (especially its state after dark). Circus area is a waste, and the new Dumbo location has poor views now compared to before. Gutting and replacing the classic Snow White ride with a meet n greet. And whoever designed the scenery was really bad at forced perspective effects.

Didn't like the Frozen ride (even had it been built in an appropriate area, the scenes are mostly lame). Don't like Paris' Ratatouille, so I don't expect to enjoy Epcot's. Highly dislike Epcot's overall direction.

I'm mixed on Star Wars. The land should look pretty at least. I'm not interested in the Falcon ride, tired of simulators and screen based scenery. Hopefully Resistance delivers, though again i'm worried the environments will feel sparse and lacking physical scenery or animatronics. No interest whatsoever in Mickey based on what i've seen so far.
Even Disney's recent concept art for attractions aren't as interesting or as detailed as the older ones did. Disneyland's Fantasmic is the best example.

Fantasmic 2016


Fantasmic 1992



Older concept art such as the original version of "Fantasmic" had more details and made things pop out more. Compared to the concept art for Aladdin where it looked like it was photoshopped. Some modern concept art would just use random stock images of various Disney or Pixar characters such as the concept art for the new floats for "Pixar Fest".

 

MisterPenguin

Rumormonger
Premium Member
But...those decisions made are very much the result of that corporate infighting. It's how one comes to understand how and why TWDC makes certain decisions. For just the results, without any understanding of how they came to be, it suffices to read the Disney Parks Blog.
It's highly unlikely you're going to get a clear picture of the infighting. People slant the story to their benefit. And then when it gets filtered through someone with obvious grudges against certain people... you're simply not getting anything close to an accurate picture. So, why then trade in the gossip?

It'd be different if there was some outside journalist or historian who interviewed all sides and reported the controversies.
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
It's highly unlikely you're going to get a clear picture of the infighting. People slant the story to their benefit. And then when it gets filtered through someone with obvious grudges against certain people... you're simply not getting anything close to an accurate picture. So, why then trade in the gossip?

It'd be different if there was some outside journalist or historian who interviewed all sides and reported the controversies.
There was a time when there were more individuals reporting on internal politics.
 

baymenxpac

Well-Known Member
I follow a bunch of v/bloggers and they always mention when they're paying out of their own pocket or are being comped. Some won't even do a review if comped, they'll just document their experience and then do a review after they've paid for it.

Yes, that's anecdotal. But so is the claim there are lots of v/bloggers secretly "on the take." Is that just like the patently absurd claim that an event with thousands of participants is 'filled with bloggers'?

IOW, I'd need to see some sort of proof that these freeloading pixie dusters exist, and it'll need to be more than just pointing out two of them.
i'm a PR professional, so this isn't really a hunch on my account. i've run programs with bloggers where we either loan or straight up give them the product. the idea isn't a "pay off" or a explicit quid pro quo, but it's human nature: you're far less likely to speak poorly about someone who gives you something for free.

that goes double when we're talking about fans who are doubling as influencers. for years, my second job ("side hustle," for those of you who want to subscribe to the post-recession re-branding) was as a sports blogger for a prominent regional sports network, then later, a team-centric baseball clothing brand. when a team i covered started reaching out to bloggers and providing them access to special events or to media conference calls, it wasn't really out of the goodness of their heart; the team wanted to ingratiate itself to the fan base of which bloggers are the most fervent.

so to tie it all around to disney: let's say you're a married father of two kids who lives in the orlando area and writes a disney blog. if disney invites you to special events and provides access for free and makes these otherwise-unattainable experiences available to you for free, why would you bite the hand that feeds you? why would you write something remotely critical? and once that blogger reviews something and gives it a glowing recommendation (whether it's good or not), disney now gets that coveted third party endorsement that other families go looking for when they're planning a trip.

don't have a ton of time today, so that might not quite be as exhaustive a post as i want it to be, but i think it should underline the basics.
 

MisterPenguin

Rumormonger
Premium Member
i'm a PR professional, so this isn't really a hunch on my account. i've run programs with bloggers where we either loan or straight up give them the product. the idea isn't a "pay off" or a explicit quid pro quo, but it's human nature: you're far less likely to speak poorly about someone who gives you something for free.

that goes double when we're talking about fans who are doubling as influencers. for years, my second job ("side hustle," for those of you who want to subscribe to the post-recession re-branding) was as a sports blogger for a prominent regional sports network, then later, a team-centric baseball clothing brand. when a team i covered started reaching out to bloggers and providing them access to special events or to media conference calls, it wasn't really out of the goodness of their heart; the team wanted to ingratiate itself to the fan base of which bloggers are the most fervent.

so to tie it all around to disney: let's say you're a married father of two kids who lives in the orlando area and writes a disney blog. if disney invites you to special events and provides access for free and makes these otherwise-unattainable experiences available to you for free, why would you bite the hand that feeds you? why would you write something remotely critical? and once that blogger reviews something and gives it a glowing recommendation (whether it's good or not), disney now gets that coveted third party endorsement that other families go looking for when they're planning a trip.

don't have a ton of time today, so that might not quite be as exhaustive a post as i want it to be, but i think it should underline the basics.
That's all true, but, for at least the v/bloggers I follow, they have no problem posting a list of "the five worst dining experiences" or to constantly beat up on a poor experience (Looking at you, Plaza Restaurant and Hollywood and Dine). And after posting bad reviews, they still get media invitations.

If a v/blogger was a pure pixie duster, the people burnt on their bad recommendations will skewer them online.
 

baymenxpac

Well-Known Member
That's all true, but, for at least the v/bloggers I follow, they have no problem posting a list of "the five worst dining experiences" or to constantly beat up on a poor experience (Looking at you, Plaza Restaurant and Hollywood and Dine). And after posting bad reviews, they still get media invitations.

If a v/blogger was a pure pixie duster, the people burnt on their bad recommendations will skewer them online.
that's excellent, seems like you follow the good ones.

personally, when i blogged, i applied journalistic ethics to everything i wrote. i take the industry's ethics incredibly seriously. on the occasions i broke news, i never did it without having it cold (two, independent sources), i quoted honestly, i gave proper credit/attribution to others, etc. not saying i'm so great, just saying that not everyone who blogs/vlogs went to j-school and cares about those things.

i'd be happy to see a trend move things into a more legitimate direction, so i'm encouraged by your experiences.
 

truecoat

Well-Known Member
That's all true, but, for at least the v/bloggers I follow, they have no problem posting a list of "the five worst dining experiences" or to constantly beat up on a poor experience (Looking at you, Plaza Restaurant and Hollywood and Dine). And after posting bad reviews, they still get media invitations.

If a v/blogger was a pure pixie duster, the people burnt on their bad recommendations will skewer them online.
I recently saw a video a blog posted on things they wouldn't do again at Disney World. I thought it would about rides or shows. It was things like I won't forget to request a better room at check in or miss my fastpass window. I should have expected as much and I don't blame them but I was really surprised at the fluff of the video.
 

ImperfectPixie

Well-Known Member
I recently saw a video a blog posted on things they wouldn't do again at Disney World. I thought it would about rides or shows. It was things like I won't forget to request a better room at check in or miss my fastpass window. I should have expected as much and I don't blame them but I was really surprised at the fluff of the video.
The number of vlogs/blogs full of fluff seems to be on the rise as of late.
 

Animaniac93-98

Well-Known Member
I was absent from the forums for a while and missed this completely.

Has really changed my thoughts on 74. I have no problem with lively internet forum banter, even when done in poor taste, even when it borders on "insulting." But making light of such a tragedy is a bridge too far for me. What a donkey.
I believe he was making fun of Disney's hypocrisy over the removal of some, but not all, gator related things from WDW following the incident.
 

mikejs78

Premium Member
Interesting comments and I personally feel that they're spot on. Having been on the site for 20 years, I can say without question that some of the aforementioned named users brought some very interesting insight, but more than anything, plenty of negativity. The heart of the forums is @marni1971 with Martin's insight into the future and historical knowledge of the parks.

Sometimes I miss some of the past mentioned posters, but at the end of the day, the forum has overall become a lot more upbeat.
There are some other really good posters besides @marni1971 (not to take anything away from him, he's great). I always appreciate @Magic Feather's cryptic clues, and @MansionButler84's wit and info, to name just a couple.

But the big thing about all of the above is they aren't jerks. And I think the site is much better served by people like them as opposed to people like Spirit. And none of them are pixie dusters, I have seen plenty of criticism of Disney from all three, but they are all respectful of others, even of those who they strongly disagree with. And that's important in my view,.and a quality that Spirit lacked, at least in the end when I saw his posts...
 

MerlinTheGoat

Well-Known Member
I believe he was making fun of Disney's hypocrisy over the removal of some, but not all, gator related things from WDW following the incident.
This. When the attack happened, Disney reacted to the event in a very knee jerk and half-hazard way. They began removing some of the gator/croc references from their property's attractions, but only selectively so. There was a large thread about these changes back when the attack occurred-

Disney's reaction to the attack somehow simultaneously came across as an absurd overreaction, but also half-baked for what they were trying to achieve. What was deemed inappropriate or appropriate was quite odd. For example, they removed the following references from the parks temporarily-

  • All gators/crocs in Living with the Land (the live ones never came back).
  • Tick Tock float from the Festival of Fantasy parade.
  • Tick Tock float from the Water Pageant.
  • Some of the jokes in Jungle Cruise related to biting or eating people.
  • Louis from Princess and the Frog in the castle shows.
  • Gator references in a Disney Junior show.
However at the same time, Disney management somehow did NOT remove the following gator related references, several of which are considerably more morbid and violent-

  • The gator animatronics in Jungle Cruise.
  • Tick Tock figures in Peter Pan's Flight, including Hook trapped in its jaws struggling to escape...
  • The ballerina portrait in Haunted Mansion, which also has a gator on the verge of eating her.
  • Splash Mountain gators, including the one biting Brer Fox's tail and trying to pull him underwater.
  • The statues at Port Orleans and Fantasia Golf.
It should also be noted that someone reported in the thread that at least one Disney gift shops was still selling gator themed merchandise. I'm not sure if this gator purge across property even included merchandise at all.

In addition, a Disney cast member was fired when she posted this photo on Twitter of a sign management had put up in the break room (after her post went viral, the sign was removed and her job reinstated by higher ups)-
 

DisneyOutsider

Well-Known Member
This. When the attack happened, Disney reacted to the event in a very knee jerk and half-hazard way. They began removing some of the gator/croc references from their property's attractions, but only selectively so. There was a large thread about these changes back when the attack occurred-

Disney's reaction to the attack somehow simultaneously came across as an absurd overreaction, but also half-baked for what they were trying to achieve. What was deemed inappropriate or appropriate was quite odd. For example, they removed the following references from the parks temporarily-

  • All gators/crocs in Living with the Land (the live ones never came back).
  • Tick Tock float from the Festival of Fantasy parade.
  • Tick Tock float from the Water Pageant.
  • Some of the jokes in Jungle Cruise related to biting or eating people.
  • Louis from Princess and the Frog in the castle shows.
  • Gator references in a Disney Junior show.
However at the same time, Disney management somehow did NOT remove the following gator related references, several of which are considerably more morbid and violent-

  • The gator animatronics in Jungle Cruise.
  • Tick Tock figures in Peter Pan's Flight, including Hook trapped in its jaws struggling to escape...
  • The ballerina portrait in Haunted Mansion, which also has a gator on the verge of eating her.
  • Splash Mountain gators, including the one biting Brer Fox's tail and trying to pull him underwater.
  • The statues at Port Orleans and Fantasia Golf.
It should also be noted that someone reported in the thread that at least one Disney gift shops was still selling gator themed merchandise. I'm not sure if this gator purge across property even included merchandise at all.

In addition, a Disney cast member was fired when she posted this photo on Twitter of a sign management had put up in the break room (after her post went viral, the sign was removed and her job reinstated by higher ups)-
Imagine getting all worked up over these temporary changes. The kind of reaction that can only happen if you're looking for agenda-fuel.

It seems pretty clear to me as an outsider... The references that stayed are rather difficult/expensive ones to remove in the first place and none of them are front and center for all to see at their flagship park a la the castle show and the water pageant. They took the steps that they reasonably could for a brief amount of time, either for legal purposes or as a Goodwill gesture to the family, it honestly doesn't matter.

Even with this context, it's an incredibly immature joke to make.
 

Missing20K

Well-Known Member
I believe he was making fun of Disney's hypocrisy over the removal of some, but not all, gator related things from WDW following the incident.
I wasn't a fan of '74, but I do think this is correct. I remember his new avatar seeming to mock the apparent over-the-top effort by Disney to remove all gator references.
This. When the attack happened, Disney reacted to the event in a very knee jerk and half-hazard way. They began removing some of the gator/croc references from their property's attractions, but only selectively so. There was a large thread about these changes back when the attack occurred-

Disney's reaction to the attack somehow simultaneously came across as an absurd overreaction, but also half-baked for what they were trying to achieve. What was deemed inappropriate or appropriate was quite odd. For example, they removed the following references from the parks temporarily-

  • All gators/crocs in Living with the Land (the live ones never came back).
  • Tick Tock float from the Festival of Fantasy parade.
  • Tick Tock float from the Water Pageant.
  • Some of the jokes in Jungle Cruise related to biting or eating people.
  • Louis from Princess and the Frog in the castle shows.
  • Gator references in a Disney Junior show.
However at the same time, Disney management somehow did NOT remove the following gator related references, several of which are considerably more morbid and violent-

  • The gator animatronics in Jungle Cruise.
  • Tick Tock figures in Peter Pan's Flight, including Hook trapped in its jaws struggling to escape...
  • The ballerina portrait in Haunted Mansion, which also has a gator on the verge of eating her.
  • Splash Mountain gators, including the one biting Brer Fox's tail and trying to pull him underwater.
  • The statues at Port Orleans and Fantasia Golf.
It should also be noted that someone reported in the thread that at least one Disney gift shops was still selling gator themed merchandise. I'm not sure if this gator purge across property even included merchandise at all.

In addition, a Disney cast member was fired when she posted this photo on Twitter of a sign management had put up in the break room (after her post went viral, the sign was removed and her job reinstated by higher ups)-
Imagine getting all worked up over these temporary changes. The kind of reaction that can only happen if you're looking for agenda-fuel.

It seems pretty clear to me as an outsider... The references that stayed are rather difficult/expensive ones to remove in the first place and none of them are front and center for all to see at their flagship park a la the castle show and the water pageant. They took the steps that they reasonably could for a brief amount of time, either for legal purposes or as a Goodwill gesture to the family, it honestly doesn't matter.

Even with this context, it's an incredibly immature joke to make.
Didn't know any of this. Appreciate everyone for informing me.

Perhaps there would have been a more tactful way of presenting his argument. Though 74 was never known for being tactful.
 

MerlinTheGoat

Well-Known Member
If you find 74's avatar distasteful (or his overall persona being abrasive), that's fine. But I still wanted to make it clear that the avatar was not intended to make fun of the victim. It's fully directed towards mocking Disney and the weird and twisted up way they addressed this mess.

It seems pretty clear to me as an outsider... The references that stayed are rather difficult/expensive ones to remove in the first place and none of them are front and center for all to see at their flagship park a la the castle show and the water pageant. They took the steps that they reasonably could for a brief amount of time, either for legal purposes or as a Goodwill gesture to the family, it honestly doesn't matter.
Animatronics (even the best and most complex ones, let alone the limited motion ones) are routinely removed overnight when they exhibit issues. Disney doesn't install items prone to being temperamental and breakage without an easy, quick and cheap way to remove them.

As I said, the crocodile animatronics from Living with the Land were removed, in spite of not being "front and center" as you put it. Yet they didn't touch other figures, in spite of requiring a similar amount of effort at best. They could have even used a scrim for the Haunted Mansion portrait...

Now I'm of the opinion that Disney should have left all of these references alone. No one would have even thought to complain had Disney not called attention to them. But the fact remains that they chose to selectively ignore the scenes ACTUALLY involving alligators attacking and eating people and instead only went after the benign references. Again all a pointless and unnecessary knee jerk reaction to begin with. But thanks to the selective nature of these removals, they even managed to botch that.

We also caught a glimpse at the ugly side of Disney management when they ordered cast members to lie to guests about the presence of actual alligators on property. A cast member exposed and called this out to the public, and she was fired for it. Her story went viral though. Disney tried to cover things up and play too much damage control with this situation, it backfired on them.
 
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Kman101

Well-Known Member
I don't think WDI is completely devoid of talent, but I definitely think a TON of talent has left or been fired over the years. And corporate interference sure as hell makes it hard for whoever is left to work their magic.

Very little of what Disney has done recently has impressed me. Cars Land is fantastic, Radiator Springs Racers is as well. And I love the environment of Pandora. I do really like the boat ride, but it's criminally short and does contain the flaws others have criticized it for (still like it but yeah I wish there was a lot more of it). I wasn't impressed by the simulator.

New Fantasyland was a complete mess. Little Mermaid is bland at best, arguably bad. 7DMT is kind of fun but short and has some severe flaws (especially its state after dark). Circus area is a waste, and the new Dumbo location has poor views now compared to before. Gutting and replacing the classic Snow White ride with a meet n greet. And whoever designed the scenery was really bad at forced perspective effects.

Didn't like the Frozen ride (even had it been built in an appropriate area, the scenes are mostly lame). Don't like Paris' Ratatouille, so I don't expect to enjoy Epcot's. Highly dislike Epcot's overall direction.

I'm mixed on Star Wars. The land should look pretty at least. I'm not interested in the Falcon ride, tired of simulators and screen based scenery. Hopefully Resistance delivers, though again i'm worried the environments will feel sparse and lacking physical scenery or animatronics. No interest whatsoever in Mickey based on what i've seen so far.
And a lot of that isn't really "bad". It's personal preference.

I think there's been an overreliance on screens but I'm sorry, FOP is a fantastic ride. But to each their own.

I agree with a lot of what you did say, though.

And it's a shame the design style and replacing GMR is turning people off of the Mickey ride.
 
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