A few years ago our family entered a new world. It's a world where stuffed animals live and play called Webkinz World. I'm sure you have heard the name...but listen to me man...you don't know the half of it.
It all starts with a simple purchase of an overpriced stuffed animal. Lets say you are walking down the isle at you local retailer, minding your own business and all of the sudden your 5 year old falls deeply in love with a little blue rhinoceros. The tag on the ear says you can adopt this little animal and bring it to life online. You fall for it and buy the little stuffie.
This begins your journey into the vast world of slick marketing, fun, games and relationship building between virtual stuffed animals and your child.
At the adoption center Ms. Birdy welcomes the kids to their new virtual world. A few years ago I registered the day after Christmas, big mistake. The server shut down causing a glitch in in our account, the kids wept bitterly for days.
Every day they would check to see if their virtual friend was alive and every morning (from Christmas into the New Year) their little hearts were ripped out and crushed as if Ms. Birdy was telling them every day, "Your webkinz are dead"!
So, after a little counseling, the next step is visiting the Webkinz front page where you will find "Kinzville Times"
Notice the up-sell to "Deluxe Memberships". I'm not bashing Webkinz I just wish I invented it. It's the ultimate business. Get kids addicted, get them to need more stuff for their little online buddies and get them coming back every day to do jobs and play games.
They get millions of visitors a months and my three kids are in that number. My kids have a good time playing with other friends from school online. Webkinz aren't taking over the world, but they have taken over our house...let's hope there isn't a breakout of spikieitis.
Happy Easter...Watch my daughter discover that the Easter Bunny is Fake!
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