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  1. #31

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    On the subject of operating hours: I think you know well how this is calculated.

    When attendance levels drop, operating hours drop with them keeping in mind ride capacity. When attendance spikes unexpectedly often the parks are kept open for an hour or two so the guests get a chance to visit more attractions.

    You don't mention the up side.

    To pretend that you don't know this is disingenuous at best. But, let's not let facts get in the way of your phoney "advocacy" and the oportunity to sell your books.

  2. #32

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    So, basically, in the past DisneyWorld Parks were wrong to have such long hours?
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

  3. #33

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    Cool Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    "Queues were built to tell the story even in line, and those are now being skipped some (or all) of the time. For those who do use the standby lines, the lines move slowly."

    The above is, of course, true, but incomplete. Long waits pre-dated elaborate queues. These queues were a response to the fact that people can start going crazy while waiting in long lines. So things were designed to distract them, and, as a bonus, set up the show. Now, the stand-by lines move much more slowly, and the best response is not to eliminate FP, but design a new paradigm for the queues. Since folks are standing in one spot for a longer period of time, they simply devise queues that take that into account. Having separate queues for FP and Stand-by for EE, designed for FP from the beginning, seems to be a step in this direction. It is my understanding that the Stand-by queue is much more detailed since people will be there longer.

    When they needed a solution to the problem of people going out of their minds in long lines, creative people solved it. Now the problem is lines that don't move for long periods of time. Time to send for the creative people again, preferably ones that can think beyond "eliminate FP" which I still regard as one of the the greatest theme park developments of all time. And as a reminder, I've never had an AP, don't get to DL more that once every year or 2, with several years between WDW visits, so I am that non-local tourist (I prefer traveler) whose needs Kevin so often claims to be representing.

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  4. #34

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    In regards to strollers and ECV's, Disney cannot be blamed for technological advances in the past 40-50 years in both these products. The burdensomeness level (how much of a burden one will heap on another) hasn't changed that much, but the actual burden has lowered in lighter and cheaper strollers and "I don't need to be pushed around in a wheelchair; I can drive myself around" ECVs.
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

  5. #35

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by Middlebrow View Post
    On the subject of operating hours: I think you know well how this is calculated.

    When attendance levels drop, operating hours drop with them keeping in mind ride capacity. When attendance spikes unexpectedly often the parks are kept open for an hour or two so the guests get a chance to visit more attractions.

    You don't mention the up side.

    To pretend that you don't know this is disingenuous at best. But, let's not let facts get in the way of your phoney "advocacy" and the oportunity to sell your books.
    So wait, now we're supposed to feel GRATEFUL that the parks are open hours less than years past, because, after all, the parks COULD have been open till 6pm that day, and it's only out of the grace of God (or middle management) that it's open till 9pm. (instead of midnight like years past).

    And how often is there an unexpected extra hour? How many guest complaints have to come in before they do that? And how often will that happen when there's a "pay to come right back in" event? How about never.

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  6. #36

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    When I saw that the TDL book is ready for pre-order, I knew I had to get it. Not that I really would need the planning tips, I have been to TDL a few years ago and found it quite easy to get around. But while in Japan, I noticed how many guide books in japanese there are for the Tokyo parks but nothing at all in english.

    For the same reason, I don't think that it is necessary to add informations on what to do outside of the parks, there are plenty of guidebooks available for that.

    Marc

  7. #37

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by Middlebrow View Post
    To pretend that you don't know this is disingenuous at best. But, let's not let facts get in the way of your phoney "advocacy" and the oportunity to sell your books.
    I'm not following the logic. What about my advocacy is phony? And why put it in quotation marks, as if to imply it's not a real advocacy?

    Books, needless to say, are not a part of it. The same love of Disney parks motivates both things. That love motivates me to speak up about WDW deficiencies (and positives!), and it motivates me to write books that share experiences and share knowledge. Seems like a logical connection to me, anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandis View Post
    For the same reason, I don't think that it is necessary to add informations on what to do outside of the parks, there are plenty of guidebooks available for that.
    Agreed; I bought a few books on traveling in Japan myself, and consciously avoided saying anything in my own book that they had said in theirs. The "travel through Japan" section tries to focus on what a Disney-going-tourist might want to know specific to his journey (ie, involving Disney) that the other books won't cover. Like how to return to Tokyo Station and find the Shinkansen area.

    If there are things which are un-specific to Disney, it's only because I didn't find mention of them in those travel guides I had bought, so I was trying to fill a gap.
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    Tokyo Disney Made Easy
    101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
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    “The press [should be] a watchdog. Not an attack dog. Not a lapdog. A watchdog. Now, a watchdog can't be right all the time. He doesn't bark only when he sees or smells something that's dangerous. A good watchdog barks at things that are suspicious.” – Dan Rather

  8. #38

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by sediment View Post
    So, basically, in the past DisneyWorld Parks were wrong to have such long hours?
    Middlebrow is probably in Middlemanagement for the Mouse.

    Overall, anyone with half a brain that functions can simply look at past years operating schedules and see for themselves that WDW offers far less park time for all guests.

    The MK used to regularly be open until midnight and 1 a.m. during summer and holidays ... the past decade has seen times when parks would close at 9 or 10 during these same times. Only recently have the hours even begun to approach what WDW traditionally offered in its first 20-25 years of operation.

    And the other parks are all MUCH worse when it comes to hourly cutbacks.

    There's just no comparison to what once was a typical operating schedule and EMH's don't make up for that in any way, shape or form.

    But they do make the spreadsheets look good on labor costs.

  9. #39

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    And just a comment on Kevin's effusive praise of the Tales publication and it's rah-rah, Disney does no wrong tone.

    I think it is important to recognize that regardless of the quality of the publication, which is certainly high in the content and style departments, you are not getting an independent voice.

    The publisher has been employed as a contractor by TWDC and has used those relationships to get what he loves to term 'unprecedented access' to celebrity Imagineers, Disney personalities and company execs.

    That in no way diminishes the publication, but it should be taken into consideration in the fact you will never read a critical word about Disney owned and operated parks ... you may get some for the OLC owned Disney parks.

    Basically, there's a reason Disney allows Tales to get the jump on anyone and everyone else and yeah, the fact they know in advance that the publication is going to be positive about anything and everything they do plays a large role.

    Ask yourself if Al Lutz, Jim Hill or any other Disney Internet webmaster started a magazine if Disney would be so amazingly cooperative.

    I some how doubt that Micechat: The Magazine would go over so well in Burbank and Glendale.

  10. #40

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by Middlebrow View Post
    On the subject of operating hours: I think you know well how this is calculated.

    When attendance levels drop, operating hours drop with them keeping in mind ride capacity. When attendance spikes unexpectedly often the parks are kept open for an hour or two so the guests get a chance to visit more attractions.
    That makes absolutely no sense as attendance levels to the parks has, overall, increased to the parks. So, according to your logic, the parks should be open later than in the past.

  11. #41

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    I agree with WDW1974's reminder that the Tales magazine is a pro-Disney publication. It needs to be read with a grain of salt. Heck, I think MiceAge (including my own articles) needs to be read with a grain of salt, too - a careful reader must always consider the source, the motivation, the target audience, etc. None of that means people should STOP reading Tales or MiceAge... just that the universe of media offers diverse opinions and perspectives, and it's always important to remember that very little knowledge in the world is "monolithic."
    Kevin Yee
    MiceAge Columnist

    I am the author of several Disney books:
    Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
    Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
    Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
    Mouse Trap
    Tokyo Disney Made Easy
    101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
    Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

    “The press [should be] a watchdog. Not an attack dog. Not a lapdog. A watchdog. Now, a watchdog can't be right all the time. He doesn't bark only when he sees or smells something that's dangerous. A good watchdog barks at things that are suspicious.” – Dan Rather

  12. #42

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Agree with the article and I really don't like the way the hours are set. I'm there on vacation for a week, why I should I pay the same prices if the parks will be insanely crowded just the same and with fewer operating hours?

    I'm also not a fan of how the company programs your schedule in such a way that you have very little freedom and makes park hopping a necessity. I rather go to a park for a day and enjoy it, but because of the awkward hours, you're pretty much forced to hop to another park because the one you're at is closing early. Or perhaps you want to catch Fantasmic but it's not playing the night you're there! And when Fantasmic! starts, the rest of the park ENDS. There's nothing worse than walking out of a show at 8:30 to discover that the entire park has closed. Even the stores on the way out are shutting their doors on you. "Go to downtown disney" they say. Do I have to??

    It really is ridiculous and feels less and less magical. Sharing extended evenings or mornings with the entire resort is like not having extended anything at all. They should have multiple extended evenings a night but each resort can share different evenings or mornings. THAT would make it worth while.


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  13. #43

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by Coheteboy View Post
    Agree with the article and I really don't like the way the hours are set. I'm there on vacation for a week, why I should I pay the same prices if the parks will be insanely crowded just the same and with fewer operating hours?
    Hotel costs might vary by season.
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

  14. #44

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    Quote Originally Posted by KevinYee View Post
    I agree with WDW1974's reminder that the Tales magazine is a pro-Disney publication. It needs to be read with a grain of salt. Heck, I think MiceAge (including my own articles) needs to be read with a grain of salt, too - a careful reader must always consider the source, the motivation, the target audience, etc. None of that means people should STOP reading Tales or MiceAge... just that the universe of media offers diverse opinions and perspectives, and it's always important to remember that very little knowledge in the world is "monolithic."
    Exactly like when i read your articles, im sure you are great and all, but you are just a WDW hater...
    Marquis d'Bod of the RCMC... always and forever

  15. #45

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    Re: 4/3: Decline, Incline

    I enjoyed the article and I think you've got many great points.

    This last October was my first trip to WDW and I was really dissapointed with the hours. That said, I was able to do "other things" in place of being in the parks - Pleasure Island, Sleep. But I think had I had the choice of going to Pleasure Island or staying at the Magic Kingdom until midnight - I would have chosen MK hands down. I think because of the whole "parkhopper" opportunity, the guest should have the choice of what to do and where to go. Keeping the parks open until midnight makes sense because it is available as a choice - not just a few clubs and hotel nonsense. Sure, Disney makes more money the way things are now, but as we all know the world isn't exactley doing well and when money get's tight those vacations are gonna be cut short or cut out.

    I think Kevin's ideas are nothing new to Disney - it's been done before and that's proof that the changes are possible. They're not building the first airplane, they just need to go back to doing it smartly, as they've clearly done before.

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