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Other People's "Playing" or "Attachment" or lack thereof - Does It Bother You?

Mar 21, 2010

    1. I've seen several comments in the discussion and debate threads recently that go like this:

      "I'm not bothered by people buying a limited as long as they're playing with the doll and enjoying it after they get it."

      Or, similarly,
      "I don't mind if other people have a lot of dolls as long as they love and properly care for all their dolls and aren't just buying them just to have them."

      Like I said, I've seen this come up four or five times now so it's not directed at any particular person. If you've made a comment like the one above anywhere, don't take this thread personally.

      I decided to start a thread about this because it seems to me to go against the other thing everybody says, "It's OK for other people to do what they want with their own dolls."

      These comments to me are suggesting that there may be some ways in which it isn't perceived as "OK" to treat dolls, beyond just the obvious extreme cases that make the community frown, such as:

      - Buying limited dolls with the sole intent of reselling them at a high price later ("Scalping"). People disapprove of this for obvious reasons.

      - Buying a limited doll, or buying a lot of dolls, and then not taking good physical care of the resin, such as letting it sit around in the sun, doing bad faceups with Magic Markers, letting it get dirty or chipped, etc. People disapprove of this because the dolls cost so much and it seems wasteful and disrespectful of the doll.

      Let's set those issues aside as not up for debate and assume, for purposes of this discussion, that nobody is buying dolls just to resell at a high price, and that nobody is doing anything, intentional or just out of stupidity, that would physically harm the doll.


      Here's the debate questions:
      1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?


      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.


      Note: It's understood that everybody is allowed to do what they want with their own doll, and you don't have to pay any attention to it, so there's no need to repeat that unless you are truly not at all bothered by anything short of scalping or damage that someone might do to their doll. If you're the least bit bothered by how other people treat their dolls aside from scalping or damage, then please be honest and say so for purposes of the discussion/ debate. I'm really curious to see what everyone says.
       
    2. Wow, Bunnydots, what an intriguing and thought-provoking thread! I've asked myself similar questions too, so let me have a go:

      Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?


      Obligated is a strong word, but unless the doll is meant to be a naked sculpture - which is a perfectly legitimate way of exhibiting a doll, btw - yes, I believe one should put care and effort in outfitting the doll, especially if said doll is presented for public viewing.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      No, a lovingly done amateurish faceup is quite fine, as long as the owner is realistic about it and doesn't expect people to line up with commission requests.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?

      Again, one is not obligated, but I find it endearing when people form relationships with their dolls, so a very subective yes.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Not my MO, but I understand the psychology behind such behavior, so yes, for some people it may be a truly satisfying experience. However, it could be argued that such behavior indicated certain issues that need to be addressed outside of the hobby.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      I'm yet to see a fullset doll which would satisfy me on all the levels, so, no (with a right to change my mind it in the future) ;)

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? (10 dolls or more)

      Theoretically, I can see how burnout due to excess may lead to depersonalizing individual dolls, so yes, the large number of dolls may change the whole paradigm.
       
    3. Thanks for jumping in on this, katyok!

      I find the use of the word "depersonalizing" to be interesting. I think what I'm getting at here is whether it's possible for there to be some expectation of folks that there will be some personalization of the doll, or some personal connection between doll and owner, even if one doesn't buy into the controversial position that dolls have "human" qualities and thus need "love and attention". In other words, it's just a piece of resin, not a living thing, but there's still some way that you're supposed to play with it or show it respect.
       
    4. Oh, I'm not one of those who insists on dolls having souls - although, I've seen some strange stuff going on with inanimate objects of art, so let's leave it at a resounding whatever. But I hate thoughtlessness and negligence in any form, because entropy is like the devil to me, seriously. One doesn't have to get all mushy over a chunk of resin, but by showing appreciation of beauty one contributes to the beauty of the world. Now, the ways of showing such appreciation may be very different for each individual, and I respect that.
       
    5. 1) Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      No. You are not obligated to buy the BEST that you can afford. The "best" someone can afford may be something of a relatively high quality like a Dollheart outfit or $100, but if that person wants to buy their doll a $40 outfit from another company they are perfectly welcome to do so.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      Nope. Amateurish is better than nothing in my opinion. Getting a professional faceup may not even be an option for this reason or that.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?


      I wish that they would. In my own opinion I find it to be a waste if they aren't interacting with the doll in some way. Even if that just means opening its display case and moving it every now and then. These dolls are meant to be played with - they are dolls after all. They just need to be played with more carefully. It always makes me sad when I hear about someone who keeps their doll in a box in their closet and never touches it.

      For clarity: I don't consider it a waste if the doll is in a display case to be viewed. :)

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      See previous answer. I guess it doesn't matter if they are enjoying doing it that way, but it seems like a waste to me. At least display the doll.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      Of course not.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      No, but I can see where having a lot of dolls would lead to issues interacting with all of them, but I know of many owners who manage it. They simply have to make time for each doll - one may not get played with one week or month but that's all right, as long as it's not years.
       
    6. 1. Nope. I do not care at all. You conditions were the only things that would bother me - destroying them or scalping. I do not care if a doll remains naked, or with a bad or no faceup. It is not my doll after all.
      2. Does not bother me at if people leave them in the box, but I would not like it personally and I will not let my husband do it. If you do not want the doll enough to take it out, then what is the point? But to each his/her own.
      3.4.5. My answers do not change for any reason. People can do as they want as long as they are enjoying it. As long as it is not my money or my space being taken up. ^.^
       
    7. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?
      Dolls can sit around butt-naked if the owner so wishes. Just because a doll costs hundreds of dollars doesn't mean it needs to dress like it does. In the case of those with characters for their dolls, nice clothes might not suit them anyway.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      As someone who paid for faceups on all her dolls and attempted one herself, there's nothing wrong with either option. So long as the owner is satisfied with the amateur work I'm not bothered by less-than-perfect faceups...

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?

      Something of a sticking point for me; I do feel a little bad for dolls that get no interaction. ^_^; Maybe it's because I'm so attentive to mine, but I can't imagine getting much joy from just looking at them all day.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?
      I've always thought, if you don't use it, why bother having it? Particularly with limiteds; I feel like they'd be better off with someone else, in a display case or otherwise.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?
      I think I already answered that. XD Though as far as interaction goes, I think even I would be hesitant to play with an expensive limited too much. If something happened to it, there's not much chance I'd be able to fix it.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?
      That doesn't bother me at all. There's a couple dolls I plan on getting as fullsets to swipe their accessories for other dolls.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.
      I'm still on the fence about that. In some ways it's hard for me to imagine appreciating all of the dolls when there are so many of them, but I have quite a horde planned for myself, so I don't feel like I can come to an opinion until I've experienced it for myself.
       
    8. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      Like you said yourself, everyone is allowed to do with their doll what they want. Not everyone is a collector and some enjoy to play with them. I can imagine if you are someone who is constantly handling them, a $100 face-up might make you nervous.
      Being a collector myself however, I do admire collections more when they're well taken care of (that is, have nice face-ups, clothes, wigs that are neat and tidy). I enjoy seeing the beauty of these dolls and when that beauty is accentuated, I'm happy.

      Likewise, I don't play with my dolls. I don't drag them with me constantly and my crew can spend weeks in the cupboard when I am too busy. That doesn't mean should others enjoy the hobby in the exact same way as I do. Variety is what keeps it interesting.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Yes, if that is what they want out of this hobby. Some of us, myself included, are looking for those rare sculpts and trying to get the perfect collection. They are very proud of their collection, but also want to be careful with it. I don't see why this kind of enjoyment is not valid. Not everyone treats their dolls like their 'babies' or 'best friends', nor should they be forced to.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      No. As long as we are not scalping, or physically harming the doll, there isn't a 'right' or 'wrong' way to enjoy this hobby.
       
    9. 1) Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      I don't think that people are obligated to do anything for the doll for its own sake. However, if they want to start spaming lots and lots of photographs of said doll on the internet I'd rather like to see the doll well dressed and properly face-uped.

      If they want to interact with the doll in any other ways, like making photo stories or taking it to meets and so on, well, that's absolutely up to them.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Yes, why not. Some people for instance are just collectors. And collectors tend to leave their collectibles in the best possible shape, so in the case of BJDs that may include leaving the doll in it's box well wrapped and only taking it out once in a while and then returning it to its box. It's a total valid way of enjoyment.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      I personally know two people who have by far more than 10 LE full-sets (we're talking face-up, wig, body blushing, clothes, shoes here) at home well stored in their original boxes. The only time they take a couple of them out once in a while is when they go to a meeting, do a photo shooting with them or decide to display one of them for a short period of time in their display cabinet. And as I can only repeat myself here, this is an absolutely legitimate way to treat and "enjoy" an expensive collectible item.
       
    10. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?


      I honestly don't understand why someone would shell out hundreds of dollars on a beautifully sculpted doll onto to stick it in a sock dress and give it a very amateur faceup. When I buy a beautiful doll, I want it to look beautiful- to me, dolls have no other purpose other than to look pretty and thus make me happy. I know this isn't how other people enjoy their dolls, but I still tend to think that if they're into BJDs they'd want them to look nice, and they'd put a bit of money into it considering how much they've already put in with just the initial purchase (and I don't mean a lot- you can find a perfectly fine outfit on the MP for not too much money and there always seems to be at least one artist doing faceups for free or cheap to build a portfolio). You don't have to get it all done right away- I have a had a faceupless doll for a few months now, because I'm not 100% sure exactly what I want for her yet. But I do want her to be a beautiful doll, once I make up my mind.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?

      Only if they're into that kind of stuff. I only do a couple of these things myself, and I don't think it'd be odd at all for someone to just set them up on display and appreciate their beauty.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      If they enjoy a doll that spends most of its time in a box, then they enjoy it. Personally I would not hold onto a BJD like this- I am trying to de-stuff my life (I can be quite a packrat), and something I rarely use or look at I am starting to think of as clutter I don't need in my life. But I'm sure there are people who keep their dolls like this, and still enjoy them every time they open up that box.


      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      No, in fact I can kind of understand keeping a limited doll in its box or not handling it much more than a standard doll, since limiteds are generally more expensive and much harder to replace in case of any accident.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      I suppose my answers to the first two do, since there would presumably already be somewhat decent clothing and faceup.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      Not really. I sometimes see collections of many dolls and wonder why the owner has bought doll after doll even though the previous dolls don't have clothes or wigs or what have you. Personally I would rather make sure the dolls I already have look nice before buying more dolls. But it's still kind of the same answer in the end. : P
       
    11. 1) Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?
      Not obligated, but I don't see the point of shelling out so much on the doll if you're not going to make some effort to make the doll look nice. It doesn't have to be a one-off designer piece won from a Y!J auction for $300 or something, but it's a waste to stick the doll in a sock with the end cut off all the time.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?
      No. For some people doing their own faceups is part of the experience and the fun. If no matter how many times a person practices the faceup still looks terrible then maybe it's time to commission something, but there's nothing wrong with doing it yourself especially if you can make a reasonable job of it.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?
      Again, not obligated but personally I can't see the point in buying the doll of you're not going to interact somehow.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      If somebody finds it a fun way of owning a doll then that's up to them, but I couldn't justify spending that much money on something and then hardly look at the thing. I have a lot of collectibles other than dolls and even if it lowers the value having them on display at least some of the time, I like having them in front of me to look at. I get little enjoyment from something stuffed away in a box all the time.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?
      I can definitely understand being more careful with a limited doll and being more aware of how it looks, but shutting it away all the time still seems like a bit of a waste to me.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?
      A fullset isn't going to require the same level of additional pieces as a blank and/or nude doll and will probably already have a great outfit so there's less need to make the effort to spend more on it, but I'd want to add some personal touches to it as well.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.
      When someone has a lot of dolls it's a given that they're not going to get quite as much attention as if the owner has less dolls, no matter how dedicated they are, so I can understand not getting as many outfits for each doll etc. Also if someone doesn't have a lot of space it makes sense to keep some dolls in storage some of the time. If I had that many dolls and found myself having no time for one of them though, I'd probably consider selling it rather than letting it go to waste in the box.
       
    12. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      First off, I have mixed feelings about this! To me, this has two aspects: the rights of the owner, and my personal feelings of (dis)comfort.

      Concerning the rights of the owner: I believe that since somebody else's dolls are their property and theirs alone, they are perfectly entitled to enjoy them however they want to, no matter what that entails.

      Concerning my own feelings: even if I believe that everybody has the right to enjoy their dolls however they want, some things'll still make me uncomfortable or even make me have petty feelings of "...if that was my doll, I would take care of it so much better!" However, that is entirely my own problem and the owner of the doll has no obligation to change anything just because it makes somebody else uncomfortable!

      That said, I'll answer the questions more from the angle of "How I think a doll should be treated" rather than "How I think the owner MUST treat their doll"! That's a big difference to me, I hope you know what I mean!

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      Personally, I think that every doll should have at least one somewhat decent outfit, wig and pair of eyes before the next one is bought -- or at least before the next two or three or more are bought! It doesn't have to be expensive clothing, it can be self-made from leftover fabric scraps, but it makes me cringe a bit when I see a whole family of dolls in sockdresses!

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      No, not at all! I think that doing the faceup and styling of the doll is a huge part of the enjoyment for a lot of collectors, and these dolls are made to allow owners to be creative, after all.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?

      No, not necessarily. If the owner doesn't enjoy any of that, they shouldn't feel pressured to do it. Some collectors regard their dolls as decorative items that sit on the shelf and look pretty, and if that's enough for them, that's perfectly ok with me!

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      In theory -- if they really enjoy it, then yes, I do! Although I think it also depends on how often "once in a while" is: if it's only once or twice a year, then I personally feel that the owner would probably get more enjoyment out of something else, and somebody else would probably appreciate the doll more.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      I do feel that it's a shame if a limited doll is just sitting around naked / in a sockdress or spending all its time in a box, unappreciated, because there's bound to somebody else who missed out on the limited doll and would've really treasured it.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      If it's a lot of dolls, I'm more likely to wonder why the owner can't slow down a bit and outfit the dolls they already own before buying new ones!
       
    13. I don't care how people enjoy their dolls - heck, I don't care if they are enjoying them! Whatever someone does with their dolls is their own business. However, I feel if someone is discussing or sharing how they personally go about playing/enjoying/insert-term-of-choice-here/interacting with their doll collection, and someone else expresses an opinion about doll collecting that does not match up with theirs, they shouldn't get their panties in a bunch over it.
       
    14. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      I make clothing for my dolls, but that is something I like to do and it is a point of pride to me to have them well turned out. But I used to be a costumer and this is the primary way I express my artistic side with my dolls. I would be embarrassed to take my dolls to a meet-up or post pictures of them if they were less than well presented. But that is important to me and I realize that may not be the case for other folks. So, no.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      Absolutely not! There's that thread in the photo requests where folks post their first face-up and their latest one. It's extraordinary. Even people who don't do it professionally tend to improve enormously over time. Unless it's something you're absolutely convinced you can't/don't want to do it, there's no reason not to face-up your own doll and no reason to look down on those who do.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?


      No, I don't think people are obligated-how much you personalize a doll is, in the end, up to you. There's a wide range of folks in this hobby, from people who go to extraordinary effort to create a harmonious artistic whole with a doll, but aren't interested in making it a character, to people for whom the character is everything and whose dolls are an artistic expression of their literary endeavors. I'm more in the latter camp myself, but I appreciate where the other folks are coming from.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Yes, I do. And perhaps those are the sorts of folks who should have the really rare and valuable dolls, rather than me. I like to play with mine too much!

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      That's a bit stickier, particularly if it is a unique item that could never be replicated again. I'm honestly not sure how I feel about that. If I had a Bermann, I suspect I might possibly treat it differently than my other dolls and might very well be inclined to just keep it very carefully in a box and only bring it out occasionally.

      On the other hand, my two limiteds were sold to me by a very nice lady who was distressed that they stayed in the box the whole time and she couldn't bond with them. She is thrilled that they have adventures with me and I send her pictures when I make them new outfits. But they're not particularly scarce or valuable limiteds.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      No. I think anyone who has 10 or more dolls is probably not going to be giving every one of them individualized attention every day-not unless they don't need to work for a living! And that's OK. I've got six and I've only got two out right now. Sometimes I'm in a MSD mood, an SD mood or a tiny mood. Then those dolls get the attention and the others wait their turn.
       
    15. The whole concept of "proper enjoyment" weirds me out.

      We inhabit a virtual world with real social contracts--in other words, I can say stuff here that will have real effects on my life. But what role does the private enjoyment of others play in the social contract? Is "improper enjoyment" a problem for the social world we inhabit the way, say, being a dishonest buyer or seller is a problem? To me, these seem like utterly different categories.

      A flaky buyer or dishonest seller can hurt me financially. Someone who executes an imperfect faceup or keeps their doll in a box...? Someone who spams the boards with pictures of their doll wearing a dress made from a sock...?

      Social contexts do have some rules to make them work. Some of the rules can get incredibly subtle and very open to interpretation. But the more elaborate and prescribed those rules become, the more we chafe. "Should" I dye my hair, now that it has turned grey, for example? Other people have to look at it, after all. Should I consider the possibility that the color is offensive to some? Or is it "my own business?" It is, after all, my hair.

      On parenting boards or political boards, you're going to see some really hot-tempered stuff, because there are living beings at stake, and "matters of taste" can shade off into endangering the welfare of others. The doll hobby, unlike parenting or politics, is a pure manifestation of questions of "taste," questions of private enjoyment. And what we see here is the basic weirdness of more or less everyone. Not because dolls are weird, but because when you get right down to it, what people like to do is never as simple, ordinary, proper or correct as we may wish to believe it is.

      We are all enjoying "improperly" in someone's eyes.

      (You know, I "enjoy" my dolls by balancing them at the edges of urban rooftops. Does that constitute "proper enjoyment?")
       
    16. Great discussion so far :chocoberry

      I'll chime in with my own thoughts now. I wanted to let a bunch of other people talk first so as not to bias up the thread with my own perspective.

      I tend to agree with the people who said "there's no right or wrong way to 'enjoy' your very own doll."

      Having said that, I know when I was young my grandma, who was in her 80s, had a doll collection. It included a bunch of dolls, mostly not too expensive, in a display case, and also some first edition Barbies - like the first one ever made in its original box, and the second one ever made in its original box - and a first edition Ginny and that sort of thing. Grandma had bought these when they first came on the market and then just put them in the box in her closet. She looked at them a couple times a year, obviously enjoyed having them - she would talk with great enthusiasm about her original Barbies - and didn't want to sell them or give them away (believe me, the Barbie-crazy grandkids tried to get hold of them!)

      I could not understand why she would have Barbies and not play with them, or at least dress them up and put them on a shelf, instead of just keeping them in a box in the closet. In those days you didn't have "collector Barbies" like you do today. Barbies were for play. She wasn't coming at it from the standpoint of "these are so valuable" either because they weren't as valuable then as they would be now, this was about 40 years ago, and in any event she wasn't looking to sell.

      Now that I'm older I realize that Grandma was probably kind of poor her whole life and it meant a lot to her to have a pretty doll in a box, also that at age 70-80 she may not have been physically able or had the time in her day to be messing with her dolls frequently, but she did really enjoy having them though it didn't look like it to my eyes.

      So, I can accept that some people enjoy dolls without needing to take them out too much. I find myself in that boat a lot because I work so much that, between that and adult family/ household responsibilities, I honestly don't get to spend time with my dolls like a person might who didn't have a busy schedule.

      At times I'm also a bit annoyed at the doll companies because the way their limiteds are set up, and the way dolls go out of stock, you pretty much have to buy things right now when they are available, whether you have the room in your life or not. The dolls may not be there when you're more "ready" for them. For example, when Dollshe stopped making its original line, that was my last chance to get all the Dollshe dolls I might possibly want, at a reasonable price. That meant I had to buy a group of dolls at once and I totally did not have time to integrate a whole bunch of dolls into my existence at that point, so it was a bit annoying. But the alternative would be to skip it and just take the chance that I could find what I wanted "someday" and it wouldn't cost a mint. Seemed better to just buy.

      And as far as displaying dolls that I don't have time to deal with right now, as in just dressing them and sitting them on a shelf till I do, my mother is always at me to do that. "Why don't you put them all out on a big shelf so they're at least out and you can look at them?" I do have several dolls out at a time, here and there, but I am very nervous about them getting damaged by light, dust, cats, etc. when I'm not around to deal with them. I actually feel much more comfortable and at ease storing the doll in a box. I just hope that "someday" I will have more doll time, but I don't want to start selling off a whole bunch of dolls now just because I don't have time. I think I might be sorry for that later.
       
    17. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      Well, I wouldn't say 'Obligated'. But if you buy something that con be worth over a thousand dollars. It's kinda your responsibilitie to atleast use it in some way. Not just take it out of the box and drop it on the floor, never to look at it again...


      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      Yes, if you (or your doll's character) care about what other people think of it. But I've seen some dolls that pull off rags really well.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      I'm going to say no, not because I think it's 'elitist' or anything. But because I like to lend out my Boy to new faceup artists so that they can work on their portfolio and, one day, be great and proffesional themselves!

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?

      Hmmm, I think I'm going to restate my first answer: "Just dont take it out of the box and drop it on the floor, never to be looked at again." If you think it's silly to do any of those things, atleast just dress your BJD and pose it ona shelf or something! Art is made to be appreciated.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Yup, whatever floats your boat ;)
      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      Honestly, I dont even 'get' the concept of a limited doll, so: no.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      I honestly cringe at people who have doll characters that wears it's company clothes/wig/eyes. It just seems kinda... unorigional. No offence but, yes: You should get some diffrent nice clothes for the doll, use your imagination. Make it yours!

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      Nope.
       
    18. 1) Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      Obligated? No. I believe people should clothe their doll in a way that pleases them. Everyone has different tastes.

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      I prefer custom and OOAK face-ups for my own dolls. I will admit that seeing a poorly done Magic Marker face-up makes me cringe, but I don't think what an individual chooses to do with his or her doll(s) is any of my business.

      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?


      In my eyes, none of that is necessary. Everyone goes about this hobby differently. Some people "interact" with dolls by setting them on a shelf, others are more "hands on" with them. I don't think there is a right or wrong way to enjoy BJDs.

      My dolls are somewhere in-between "cabinet babies" and "playthings," though I think they are more for display than anything else. I do enjoy photographing them and they are handled (carefully), but just seeing them makes me smile and reminds me not to give up my dreams.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Sure, why not? In many cases, space may be limited and an owner may need to keep a doll in its box. I can understand why someone might want to do that. Maybe their house doesn't have air conditioning and keeping dolls in their boxes is to prevent heat and humidity from damaging them. There is a reason for everything.

      However, if the individual is keeping a doll in its box solely because s/he does not enjoy the doll or hobby, I think it is best to sell the doll so the money can be used to buy something s/he would love.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No. For the most part I prefer custom to full-set defaults, but that's just a matter of preference.

      5) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.

      No. I'm one of those individuals who knew upon entering the hobby I wanted a certain number of dolls - which happens to be >10. I'm not one to take my dolls out often, I do have my favorites, etc. but none of that makes me feel any less attached to the hobby itself. Each doll has its purpose, and I enjoy every one of them - when they are in or out of their cabinets.
       
    19. 1) Setting the above two issues (scalping and damaging dolls), is there anything else that you feel someone who buys dolls should or should not be doing with them that constitutes proper "enjoyment" or "appreciation" or "love" for the doll? Do you feel that people are obligated to do any of the following?

      - Buy or make really nice clothing for the doll (i.e. best you can afford)?

      I treat each doll that I buy as a complete project, face up wig clothes and as a professional artist(day Job) then I am lucky to be able to do this competently. But if you want to have your doll buck naked and wigless then its your choice even if you paid $1000 for it. If you ruin it then someone will be sad if they could have loved it better but there you go...would they have written of a car in the same way?

      - Invest in a professional faceup for the doll, rather than a properly done (i.e. no magic markers, not awful) but kind of amateurish one?

      I struggled even as an artist to do my first face up and it got wiped so many times! but if it is your doll and you love what you have done who is to say you are wrong. Looking down on folks who don't have my training? Hell no! everyone has to learn and you learn art in ANY form by doing it.
      - Interact or "play" with the doll somehow - by hugging it, making up stories about it, talking to it, taking it to meets, photographing it regularly, etc.?


      No, I don't "play" with my dolls I have them on display in my workroom and they are around me as |I work on the next one. I move them and pose them with each other and so on but they are out in the world not in a box...I am a collector/artist but I really enjoy the movement and jointing, they all have bac k stories and characters though.

      I think everyone who is in this hobby has a"character" for their dolls even if it was bought wholesale as a fullset. That isn't for me though, but I have no problem with those who do it that way. Thank goodness for fullsets or there would be a whole load more sock dresses around! they allow everyone to dress their doll with care and loveliness! should they choose to.

      2) What about people who buy the doll and then just leave it in its box (where it is safe from any physical harm) and look at it once in a while? Do you think that constitutes a valid "enjoyment" of the doll?

      Yes, I do.

      3) Do your answers change if it's a limited doll?

      If it was very rare doll then I might treat it differently but as that is very unlikely then mine get to be out of the boxes....I want to see my dolls and the work I put in to them.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a fullset doll that comes with everything, so there's no need to customize, buy clothes, or get a faceup and wig for the doll?

      No.

      4) Do your answers change if it's a lot of dolls? For purposes of the question, let's assume that "a lot" of dolls means approximately 10 dolls or more.


      Ok I have more than 10 dolls, and can't seem to stop getting more. I have all of them on show and fully expect to do the same even if I get to thirty dolls! (This is unlikely as my husband will divorce me and I won't have any money......:doh.)

      Does it matter? if one person has one doll in a box as it came from the factory and a another has 20 all in stages of workin progress, what makes them happy and contented with their doll collection will not work for another even in the smallest way, so no my answer is the sameWe are all weird and wonderful in ourselves and that shows in this weird and amazing hobby. Not one of us is the same and our approach to having dolls is innately different. Therefore we should enjoy each others expressions of the hobby and not be too quick to negativity.
       
    20. Personal Enjoyment: I consider the word "use" to encompass playing with the doll 24/7, playing with the doll once every 2 months, leaving the doll on a shelf, leaving the doll in a box, dressing the doll up in a sockdress, dressing the doll up in nothing but Atelier Soda, AND taking the doll out of the box & throwing it on the floor & leaving it there.

      Play or No Play: When people say "If you bought it, you should use it"-- THAT bothers me, because it shows that that speaker only thinks of their own preferences for the word "use". It shows the speaker is unwilling to even consider anybody else's view of the world.

      If you bought that doll for the specific purpose of owning it as part of a collection, then you *are* using it by letting it sit in a box. If you bought that doll for the specific purpose of keeping you company everywhere you go, then you are using it by dragging it through the dirt and playing with it everywhere. People purchase dolls for a zillion different reasons; there are exactly as many different ways of achieving personal enjoyment from them.

      Fullsets: As for "you have to change the factory settings in order to make it yours", doubly nonsense. I specifically purchased a Soom Vega fullset with all the bells and whistles because I wanted that exact merman; he still lives in his Soom outfit & fin parts all the time, because he already was my merman. Why would I change him if he was already perfect for me? (It's odd, though: none of the rest of my fullset LE guys look like their original sales photos at all. Just the big fish. Special case. ^^)

      For that matter, I know people who will keep the company's character name for their doll if they like that character enough. Again, if you like that character/name/outfit on that doll, why not keep it?

      Quantity: My personal collection is approaching 30 dolls-- and no, I don't feel I have to satisfy somebody else's idea of "use" (i.e. adhere to somebody else's collecting-style) by playing with each doll every day. For one thing, if I did that, I'd never have time to go to work & earn money for things like new eyeballs or food or rent.

      For another thing, it violates the ways that I want to enjoy my dolls: One doll at a time, whichever doll happens to catch my fancy at any given moment. If, out of 30 dolls, I only feel like paying attention to with the same 1 for a month, because I'm just really into him at the moment... or if I feel like photographing 5 or 6 of them in one afternoon binge... or if there are whole weeks or months when I don't have time for ANY of them... then that's how I'll play. Sometimes I just enjoy looking at these buggers and knowing they're here.