Saturday, March 7, 2015

(a)Musings: PoupeeGirl Shutting Down

I knew the day was coming, but wasn't totally ready to accept it. I've been on PoupeeGirl for over 7 of the 8 years it's been around, and while I only spent $5 (I think it was) on jewels one time shortly after they were released and never knew anything about or played the DS game, I always thought the site must have been or at least had the potential to be highly profitable. The collaborations with celebrities and brands, from Kaela to Lancome, had no reason to stop with the huge number of frequent users the site has, or had, anyway.

If I had the resources, I'd love to buy the rights to the site and re-launch it. There would be a Kickstarter campaign and a long line of excited interns and volunteers who'd rally to save it. 
If I could re-launch PoupeeGirl after a short-term hiatus, I'd add categories for household items and decor. I'd somehow make the layout of the homepage more multi-faceted and interactive but not too annoyingly graphically intense, maybe so that you could choose to have your room be comprised of photos of your own super cute furniture and trinkets, arranged like a collage, with little animated additions and sparkles and whatnot. 
That would pave the way for future collaborations and item designs from cute interior decor brands like Marimekko.


Plus, people who collect Blythe and Pullip asked for a doll and doll accessory section for a long time. I was still hoping they'd cave back when I cleaned out the garage of the house I grew up in back in '08 and took pics of some of my cutest stuff.

AND, what are we supposed to do with all of our non-wearable Sailormoon accessories?

If I were at the helm of this adorably fashionable time-wasting machine, I'd make sure both the dress-up items and peoples' closets were arranged better, with additional subcategories (like, why are the "Vest" and "Cardigan" categories not under "Outerwear"? Ermahgerd.) not only in English, but Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, French, German, and Portugese. Choosing to use the site in another language and being able to switch back and forth could be a fun and helpful learning tool for students, or anyone who'd be interested. More effective, pointed advertising on a much larger scale could also be done if these settings existed.

I'd make communicating easier and less clunky, make it so that people could comfortably have real-time conversations, maybe with something akin to Facebook's messenger. I'd get rid of all this "Comment Includes Dangerous Tag" bullshit that I can't understand for the life of me, and invite app developers or whoever comes up with them to have special sticker campaigns or to add them to a shop on the site and make the sticker sets available for purchase.

Because it's so annoying not being able to post your face (or yourself wearing a piece of clothing with the face blurred out, depending on what kind of mood the moderator who notices is in) or entire outfits, I'd have a weekly Best Outfit competition with various categories, so that the winner wasn't always the same girl with all the stunning, super expensive lolita dresses, $1200 camera, and impeccably-snapped photos.



I mean, come on, cut my younger, bathroom-mirror-selfie-self some slack on stuff like this.


Why is this site important to me, anyway, and why am I brainstorming and fantasising about how to save it?

I've been using it since my first semester of college. My best friend at the time introduced me to it, because we were both super into Japanese street fashion and cute kitschy shit.

It's the paragon of procrastination, something you can really, seriously waste uncountable minutes of your life on. It's a great way to keep up with what's trendy in Japan and Brazil: everything from sickeningly sweet or gorgeous name-brand stuff you can't afford, from Liz Lisa to Chanel, to more attainable items you can immediately open another tab and Google, like new and different types of Baby Lips, melissa sandals, and Kewpie phone charms.

More than that, it's therapeutic. I have a certain need to be in control of things and get pretty OCD about organisation as a result. Dressing my poupee and having a cute virtual closet that mirrors my real one but with a neat, uniform structure and convenient categories feels nice

And of course, getting new items and assembling ever-more complex and nuanced outfits for my waiflike two-dimensional doll has always been bizarrely rewarding.

Okay, fine, it's addictive.


 Okay, fine, I only got perfect attendance twice, so maybe it's not that addictive.

I've been using poupee as long as I've been dating. Literally, my whole relationship history, every guy I've been with has gone, "POOPY girl? Ew."
If you're reading this, I know you know that feel.

Finally, the site shutting down coincides weirdly with my finally moving to Japan. I just moved to fucking Tokyo, guys, do you have any idea how much cute stuff I'll be able to post? 
Oh wait, no, I won't, because I got here on the 4th, and the site shuts down the 31st. Really? Really?! 

Don't go, PoupeeGirl.

:(