11/29/2010

Do You Lurk?

Having done so much traveling this past week without my laptop, I often turned to the web on my phone  for the latest happenings in the doll world. I got to thinking how doll boards have changed my collecting experience.
When I was collecting Bratz dolls I found a Yahoo board that specialized in Bratz. That was my first. It was so much fun. I created my first doll story and had a very positive experience sharing my photos and looking at the photos other collectors posted.  I was already a collector of Tonner's Tiny Kitty, Tyler and Sydney dolls but looking back, I don't know how I survived without a network of collectors at my fingertips! The Tonner site, eBay and dealers' websites were all I had.
Sometime in 2004, I purchased my first Fashion Royalty doll on eBay and after that from other collectors. As I look back through my database, I see names of sellers that I could only have met on the boards.  Many have moved on to other pursuits or are collecting other types of dolls. One is running his own doll forum. Several have gone out of business.
One amazing experience was reading someone's post about a BIC exclusive Kyori coming out soon.  I wrote to BIC and that got me on the pre-order list to get the Ginza Kyori Gift Set. I had no idea what I was doing as I wasn't familiar with the big scramble for Fashion Royalty dolls. I think Ginza was the first FR doll I got at retail and that was no mean feat for a beginning FR collector back then. It was also the first year I attended a Fashion Royalty convention. That was in Toronto. If I hadn't been a board member, I wouldn't have known anyone in advance.

Like so many other collectors I became addicted to FR and the rest is pretty much history but I wanted to give a plug to the public doll boards I frequent most often.

The board which I have been a member of for the longest time is the Pink Parlor. The management has changed and the board is getting back to it's former lively self again. The (unstated) focus of the board is 1/6 scale dolls such as Fashion Royalty, Barbie and similar but many of the collectors have dolls that run the gamut. Registration is necessary and is free.

Logo Property of Pink Parlor. Click on it to go to the Pink Parlor.
Prego is the doll board I go to for the larger dolls like Tonner's Tyler, Sydney, Character Figures, Antoinette and similar 1/4 scale dolls. Again, the collectors there have eclectic collections and enjoy seeing pictures of other dolls. For a long time I thought that I couldn't post anything but repaints because many of the members have the most gorgeous collections of dolls that have been repainted.
I have learned that Prego is a safe board and that "factory" dolls are welcome as well as OOAK.  Many post pictures of Sybarite, Deva and Asian BJD dolls as well. If I post a question about something Tonner related, someone is bound to come up with the answer in minutes.  Registration is necessary and is free.
Here is the link to register to post at Prego:
http://tools.boardhost.com/reg/user=prego
Logo Property of Prego. Click on it to go to Prego.
If you collect Gene Marshall dolls and love fashions from that era, check out The Studio Commissary.
Every day the board posts a different vintage image in the header of either models or movie stars.
The Studio Commissary also hosts a link to the Fashion Sleuth which is a collection of images of real fashions which have been inspirations for doll fashions. For example, Azalea Ice Zita's gown was inspired by a Valentino. Board owner,  Mike Basala, has a great Flickr collection to which many sleuths have contributed. The board is open to all.

Valentino
Zita "Azalea Ice"

Dolly Daily is a forum as opposed to a message board. One big difference is that on an active message board, a topic can scroll off quickly. On a forum, there are tools to see the latest posts in a threaded or hierarchical structure. Here is a link to Wikipedia's explanation of the different types of on-line discussion sites.
Dolly Daily has areas for all different types of dolls, general questions, birthdays and introductions, selling and buying, member blogs and more. Contributors get access to a game arcade and a steam room.
Posts do not scroll off and are searchable by topic and poster's name.
Although I am a member there, I mostly lurk, but I do recommend this forum for it's huge resource of collectors and information. Registration is required and general membership is free.

Logo Property of Dolly Daily. Click on it to go to Dolly Daily

For ball jointed dolls I go to the Den of Angels. This is a very closely moderated forum containing more information than most collectors will ever need. There are many specific sub-forums so it's easy to navigate and find what you are looking for.  They have a huge membership from all over the world. Right now as I type this there are 541 users online. There are 30,852 members of which 10,319 are active members.
Membership is by invitation and free.

Logo Property of DoA. Click on it to go to Den of Angels

These are by no means all the doll boards out there. There are scores of Yahoo groups and other hosted boards in a multitude of formats. One or more is certainly right for you!

Are you still lurking?

12 comments:

  1. My first experience was Vicki's message board which closed once BFC started it's own board. It's hard to believe that originally the Barbie board was free. I also believe that the Pink Parlor was started to fill the void left by Vicki's board.

    I too was (am) a member of the Yahoo Bratz board though I primarily lurked there. I no longer collect Bratz but still have the ones I once collected stored somewhere.

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  2. Bravo! I am a long time lurker who recently started to post at Pink Parlor because I love the fashion royalty. I have been so warmly welcomed and am glad I came here instead of another board, that was very cliquey and unaccepting (you didn't mention that board but it seems to be a copy of Pink Parlor from what I can tell). I've also been on Prego and that seems to be a nice place to be as well.

    -E.P.

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  3. @E.P. I am glad you have found a board that suits you. I only mentioned the boards that I feel comfortable on and spend most of my time on. I have no opinion of the other boards out there.

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  4. Great blog entry today, Terri. I used to be scared of Pink Parlor and other collectors for years. I didn't understand how it worked and I was scared of running into rabid psycho collectors. After attending the FR Conference this year, I realized, I am one of the crazies myself, and that that's ok,lol. We spend so much time, effort and money on this hobby. We may as well maximize on it and enjoy it to it's fullest.

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  5. oh yeah, you bet I lurk =) but in my case the language is a huge factor, since I'm not native english, and and I have to put lots of effort to participate in these places. I try to be up to date in all the 4 places I daily visit though, and yeah I lurk a lot =)

    I only collect FR since September 09, and ebay was the place where I searched for the dolls... by the end of that year I bumped into the doll boards a few times... and it was by googling specific doll names... I was very affraid of the boards, I had never seen one untill then, and I thought it was scary... people writting what they wanted in the subject lines, and many times the messages itselfs had no "content" at all, everything was said in the subject line... *lol* that was scary for me (and soooooo fast!)

    Now I just think of those messages like sms or so... and I got used to the boards, and my collection grew into a level I never thought it would be possible, because we do get fab deals in these places (we have to be carefull though, because of some scammers that pop up every once in a while, to try and ruin things for us collectors...)

    (oh uh... apparently the "radio" is still "on" inside me Terri... sorry =))

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  6. What a thoughtful post!!! I totally agree. I began collecting dolls in earnest in late 2004 I recall. But not until gosh, 4 years later a few months after "discovering" FR, a local dealer here in Phoenix suggested I would find the boards interesting. To say the least, they have transformed my collecting experience, and I look forward to "lurking" in the boards after work.

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  7. This is a great post Terri. How does one sign up for Prego now? I can't get in and there is a box that pops up. How can one contact their administrators to get permission to be a member?

    Smittenkitten
    Teri

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  8. Another Gene board, Terri, is ICOG (In Celebration of Gene). Although there is some cross-over between this board and The Studio Commissary, I have found some use one board over the other, so you'll see different posts. It seems Madra trolls this site the most, LOL!!!!

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  9. Hi, thank you for this info, I signed up for Prego and I also can't get in. I googled and tried everything, but no go. Is there someone who can help ?
    Thanks
    Sydney

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  10. @Sydney:
    I'm looking in to that for you. You're not the only one who has asked.
    Terri

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  11. Here is the link to register at Prego:

    http://tools.boardhost.com/reg/user=prego

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    Replies
    1. they aren't accepting registrations right now [hopefully this is a yey aI can post again on blogs]

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