Published: August 21, 2013 at 3:43 PMHaving been to Hong Kong Disneyland last December, I will complain that it is the Anaheim clone with a completely different feel. Main Street no longer has that Victorian charm. It is a mere facade. It is the same idea as Grizzly Gulch where the American West feeling, that I know, is completely lost in China. They should have done a tropical Adventureland version of Big Thunder Mountain instead.
Disneyland in China is not working in that people do not necessarily love Disneyland's penchant for themed environments that features American and European concepts and ideas. They love Mickey Mouse and the various characters. They also love expensive and elaborate merchandise and luxurious surroundings. The small scaled and modest Sleeping Beauty Castle seems crude in comparison and completely out of place in China. Perhaps that is why knock-offs don't work, and the originals don't work either.
Americans live in much more modest homes. Going to Disneyland seems like a luxury. Chinese live in high rises. Going to Hong Kong Disneyland with a modest castle and a quaint Main Street is like visiting a doll house.
I can see that the approach in Shanghai is much better than what was initially done in Hong Kong. This is a plus.
Lastly, I will welcome seeing the Monkey King theme park, and Mystic Manor.
Published: August 22, 2013 at 7:55 AMOkay, this was the absolute best article I have ever read anywhere on Chinese theme parks. I am going to use it as a reference for a paper I am writing on intellectual property issues in China. I already cleared it with my professor and she agreed it's an excellent primary source on what's happening in China.
I really have never understood why they built Hong Kong Disneyland or why they build DCA 1.0 in California. Both those projects seem like they were really done on the cheap and were half-baked. I don't know why they built them so cheaply and in such a rush...was it some kind of legal issue where they had to push the trigger and build something, even if they knew it would not be any good? Maybe they thought if they built anything they could just remodel it and make it good later. Seems stupid and wasteful to me but maybe there's some business related thing that I don't understand.
I really want to learn more about the copyright infringements and knockoffs in China. I hope someone adds in comments more information. I want to know why the Chinese government allows this...and if the government will ever shut down the knockoffs. Like, when Shanghai Disney opens will they shut down the creepy knockoff parks? A lot of Chinese are very poor and can't afford to go to Disney, so will those people then make do with the knockoff? I heard that Shanghai Disney is being geared just to the rich Chinese...so I wonder if it's just part of the plan that the poor will go to the knockoffs instead and nobody minds.
Please try to do more articles on this subject. This was just brilliant and I know I am going to get an A when I use it in my paper!
Published: August 22, 2013 at 2:22 PMHey "Okay". Your questions are so basic that I wish you had done a minimum of research before you asked your questions. Most people that follow the news from China, which isn't hard, will already know the answers to your questions.
Why HKDL? Eisner era. Pressler cut a lot out of the park. It is a badly done clone of Disneyland. DCA is a worse clone of Disney/MGM theme park.
Why Chinese government allows knockoffs? Many reasons. (1) Get ahead. They need money, quick money. They need jobs. They need expertise so the fastest why to get it is copy it first. Copies are best for the export market where they can sell plenty to foreigners.
(2) How can they shut it down? The government has shut it down for political reasons and to appease some manufacturers who are able to sue and win, but the companies close and quickly reopen. The environment of cheap labor allows this, AND if the manufacturer was once an OEM for a foreign company, it is quite easy to extend a product run and sell it as the original. Mostly, the government turns a blind eye to it.
(3) No, the creepy knock-off parks will close on their own incompetence. People will find Disney theme parks superior.
(4) Yes, many Chinese are poor and probably can't afford to go to Disneyland, but many Chinese has reached middle class and CAN afford it. Do you realize how many Chinese come to the US as tourists? PLENTY. The middle class is millions of people. I didn't think so myself until I was confronted with reality. I seen the Chinese tourists at home in Southern California and in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Many have money to burn. The poor will do what the Americans did 50 years ago. Save up for a once in a lifetime trip to Shanghai Disneyland.
Next time, ask researched questions.
Published: August 22, 2013 at 3:45 PMHere's a good article.
"Counterfeit cop: How a local attorney spots fake Rolexes and knockoff Louis Vuittons"
"Chinese companies frequently knock off American products, Austin says. He’s convinced that if more American companies knew how much revenue is at stake and how relatively easy the process of bringing a claim against a counterfeiter is, more would take that step. Most companies assume it’s a long, drawn-out legal process when in fact it typically takes only a few days."