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Legos voted most popular toy in the U.K.

by James

legos

According to a recent survey, about 56% of Brits loved playing with those little colored plastic bricks when they were kids. The poll, conducted by the British catalog store Argos used a sample of more than 1,000 people aged 16 and upwards from around the country and asked them about their favorite toy. This may be due to it’s unisexual appeal which meant that both boys and girls could play with them and not feel pressured to adopt to a doll or action figure.

“The poll proves that Lego is a high quality toy that keeps being interesting to children and adults because of its creative possibilities, “stated a Lego representative, “It’s so simple but has so much potential.”

And it looks to have no end in sight as the Danish toy company has amped up production of movie themed Lego sets from blockbusters such as Warner Brothers “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” “Harry Potter” and “Batman,” and Paramount’s “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” series. But there’s also such popular sets as Legos’ Mindstorm, Mission to Mars, and Technic series which appeal to older kids and teaches them to build automated robotic devices. In fact, there are many serious engineers, including those designing a space elevator who use Lego’s Mindstorms to build proof of concepts for their designs.

So, clearly, the popularity of Lego’s doesn’t end when childhood does. It’s just getting started.

Hasbro raising prices … again

by James

Ha$bro

For the second time this year, Hasbro has announced a price increase on popular toy lines citing “rising costs of production.” This is a rather lame excuse considering that at the same time they announced a 13% profit to the tune of over ¾ of a billion dollars. And eight fold increase over last year.

Continue reading » Hasbro raising prices … again

Bible Action Figures make the mainstream

by James

Almighty Heroes

Thanks to the success of such faith based toy lines as Veggie Tales and the Chronicles of Narnia, more parents are looking to give their kids a more spiritual line of toys with which to occupy their imaginations. And what better creator (other than the actual Creator) to design and market such toys than the inventor of the G.I. Joe?

Continue reading » Bible Action Figures make the mainstream

Renting toys like movies …

by James

Baby Plays

Let’s face it. Toys are expensive and a child’s interest in them is short. After a few weeks of exhaustive and obsessive play time, a child will suddenly forsake something they were inseparable with just a few days before. As such, parents have closets stuffed to the gills with toys that simply go largely ignored. It’s Woody’s worst nightmare. But wouldn’t it be great, not to mention a relief on the pocketbook, if parents could rent a toy much like they rent a movie or video game? Now they can.

Continue reading » Renting toys like movies …

McDonalds feels the Force

by James

SWHappyMeal

Timing with the release of George Lucas’ latest Star Wars Epic STAR WARS CLONE WARS, McDonalds will be having Happy Meal Toys for the very first time.

Continue reading » McDonalds feels the Force

Devo Whips McDonalds over Happy Meal Toy

by James

New Wave Nigel

His name is New Wave Nigel, and he’s the center of a lawsuit by punk rock group DEVO over the depiction of what they call a copyrighted costume device which is depicted on the top of New Wave Nigel’s head. New Wave Nigel is a Happy Meal Toy and was part of the American Idol Happy Meal toy collection which also featured Disco Dave, Country Clay, Rockin’ Riley and Soulful Selma. Nigel’s costume includes an orange jumpsuit, pink shades, and, the center of Devo’s complaint … their copyrighted “energy dome” hat. Devo also complains that Nigel plays a tune that sounds way too close to the kind of music they make.

Continue reading » Devo Whips McDonalds over Happy Meal Toy

China revokes Toy export licenses

by James

China revokes Toy export licenses

Bowing to international pressure after a long string of toy recalls from hazardously high levels of lead in paint and other faulty manufacturing issues, the Chinese government has revoked the export licences of 700 toy factories. Revocation came after an extensive inspection of more than 3,500 toy makers since last August after Chinese-made toys were recalled due to either design flaws or being found with toxic levels of lead in the paint used to decorate the toys.

“After the inspection, the overall situation regarding the production of toys for export has been greatly improved,” said Li Changjiang, head of the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine

Widespread safety issues with everything from food to toys and other exports have created heightened tensions in trade relations with Europe and the United States. One of China’s leading export officials was arrested recently for accepting bribes to look the other way and now, this widespread revocation shows that Beijing is very serious about trade relations globally.

China exports around 22 billion toys every year. That’s a lot of plastic and a lot of money, so it make sense that China would eventually respond to the pressure to clean up its export act.

Hat Tip: Agency France Presse

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