Disney knifes fan sites in the back; starts its own theme park blog
The Walt Disney Company today launched its own blog
devoted to its theme parks. The blog is written by Disney employees, including PR reps from the parks. The blog, which launched with three entries, promises "the latest, official information about our destinations as well as some exclusive behind-the-scenes looks at what makes Disney Parks the most magical place on earth."
Following the recent launch of its official fan community, D23, and Disney World's "Moms Panel" for Q&A advice, Disney's now moved into just about every space occupied by its legion of online fan sites and communities. Disney's been polling D23 members and other customers about their use of Disney fan sites, as the company makes it move toward taking over their readership.
Of course, not every online theme park community focuses all its coverage on Disney. (Ahem.) While it's nice to hear company-approved releases from Disney and other theme parks, it's also nice for theme park fans and customers to have independent voices covering the industry. We don't work for any theme park company at Theme Park Insider, nor do we take free trips and cruises from theme parks, as some folks at other sites do.
I'm sure that the biggest Disney fan sites will endure, since entire communities don't easily pack up and move from one URL to another. But I'm glad that the Theme Park Insider community covers more than just Disney. The Disney theme park blog won't breathe a word about the Wizard World of Harry Potter. Nor will it let you know about neat deals like free soft drinks and parking at Holiday World. Nor will the Disney blog, or the Disney fan sites, delve into the ownership situations at competing chains such as Busch and Six Flags.
And, most important, your non-park-sanctioned snark is always welcome here.
FWIW, I'd love to hear what you think about the new "official" Disney blog. I'm not above (or below) ripping off certain features if TPI readers would like to see us try them, too. ;-)
There's room enough on the Internet for all, methinks. I'm actually kinda surprised they don't already have an official blog. Besides, we'll still need Theme Park Insider to tell us the truth...and the glorified press release blogs aren't exactly thrilling reading.
You're being WAY overdramatic. They're not knifing anyone in the back. They're starting their own blog, which they're entitled to, and which they should've done long ago.
A little dramatic, no? Does every corporate entity that starts a blog "knife fan sites in the back"? It's a great medium to share insider knowledge and develop even closer ties to the Disney community. My only question is, "What took the so long?"
What? I'm not allowed any snark? And you
Yesterday (9/27) I tried to go onto the Disney Travel Channel (chan. 650) on Cablevision in New York. For some reason, it was gone. I thought it
Yeah, I can see what you mean, but I think its to make more traffic on Disney site, which, in my opinion, is a little cumbersome to get around. I checked some of the entries and I actually thought they were nice, but nothing really big in regards to competition. I still trust the current sites on my Disney trivia and gameplan. That mom's panel is, in my opinion, doesn't really give that great of information. Of course, I would want my Mom on there :). Still, Disney, or any park for that matter, will not really be able to give the inside gist of how to tackle their park since you might be able to get though parks a little too fast for them. I doubt anything will come through it.
My guess is my criticisms of the non-functioning Yeti, and the dilapidated Jungle Snooze will not go over big on the "Official Blog." I'll stick with TPI for a broader, more critical, and open discussion forum.
Disney typically does not acknowledge the presence of any non-Disney theme parks in the world, so I can't imagine them linking to the tournament. (I will send 'em the links, though.) That said, I would love if presence in the blogosphere would help at least part of the Disney Company to lighten up and embrace irreverence now and then.
I wonder how this fares for my favorite fan site, www.doombuggies.com, all about the Haunted Mansion? They also have a sister site called www.deadmentellnotales.com about Pirates of the Carribean.
No, I think the headline is a little much and its not because I like Disney.
Wow Robert – Who are you going after next – Shamu on twitter…
Hey, headlines are supposed to grab your attention. C'mon, what are you gonna read:
I'm waiting for the blog posts telling us why Stitch's Escape What-Ever-It's-Called is the best attraction in Tomorrowland, and the detailed design history of Superstar Limo. ;-)
Eh, its your editorial and your site so you can call it whatever you want. Like I said before, you got my attention.
Question is, how much censorship will be going on.
I was actually very excited to find out they were opening an official blog. To be honest I wish more Theme Parks would. I try to keep my customers up to date on all Theme Park news through a blog, twitter, and facebook to name a few. It will be nice to find out Disney info from the horses mouth so to speak. And now when I have questions about a new event I wont have to call Disney directly and wait on the phone for 15 min. I believe having a direct line of communication with Disney will really benefit people in the travel industry as well as fans. Everyone has an opinion, Disney fan sites are mainly a way for people to express those opinions, having a new source of information will not stop stop anyone's opinion - it will actually give them more to talk about. I just hope it will be as informative as I think it will be!
People in the travel industry have long had direct communication with Disney. (Their PR people has always been responsive to me... well, at least once Eisner was gone.) The question to be answered is... how actively will the new Disney Blog's writers engage with its readers, the non-industry public? Or will the site's comments be restricted to those moderated by the writers as the most favorable to Disney?
How can Shamu Twitter? Maybe because he's not really a killer whale, but an animatronic, controlled by the reanimated body of Walt himself, fired from his company and now seeking revenge!
I posted a comment to the new blog as a test, asking about the
I just wonder what they are trying to accomplish with it. Is it just to increase traffic to their own site? Or is it because they want more control of their presence on the web? I would tend to say both. We all know that park fansites... especially Disney ones, draw lots of traffic, and discussion about the park flows freely. In essence, fan websites create buzz and publicity at a cost of zero to the park... which is why I wonder the reason they are doing this. Site traffic and more control of content are the only two reasons I can think of.
I'm looking forward to the official Disney spin on the rumors and reports flying around on the other blogs/boards.
The blog looks like nothing more than Disney PR spin. I won't be reading it and I doubt many others will. The Disney fan sites have nothing to fear.
Update: they posted my entry, but my question went completely unanswered. Oh well, just like TPI: I ask Robert questions and he ignores me like I am the dirt on the bottom of his shoes. ;)
This seems like the most pointless blog. It'll only talk about how amazing and perfect Disney is and since all the news will only be posted once Disney confirms it in a press release, information regarding new attractions will most likely be months behind other blogs.
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.