Disney site lets customers design products

Disney site lets customers design products | CNET News.com:

“Disney’s online shopping site on Wednesday launched its first ‘You design it’ feature in a move aimed at riding the fast-growing trend toward giving choosy Internet shoppers exactly what they want.

Disney partnered with online customization site Zazzle.com, which licenses thousands of images from Warner Bros., Marvel Comics, Lucasfilm and 20th Century Fox, among others, and also allows users to sell their own art for use on personalized T-shirts, greeting cards and postage stamps.

It took Disney, which aggressively protects its copyrights, about two years to figure out how to open its vast art archives and still control how consumers could use its characters.

‘Disney very much wanted to create the Disney experience and ensure products we ultimately sell to consumers protect the brand and reinforce a lot of what it stands for,’ Zazzle co-founder and Chief Executive Robert Beaver said. ‘That was our challenge from an engineering standpoint.’

Zazzle’s Disney boutique, which can be accessed via disneyshopping.com and disneyinkshop.com, allows consumers to select a Disney character, T-shirt style and color and to add a name or phrase from an approved list.

The 4,000-plus Disney images can also be used on stamps or greeting cards on Zazzle.

Disney, which has long allowed customers to add their names to items sold at its stores and theme parks, is ‘constantly looking to add personalized items for guests,’ said David Barad, Disney’s vice president of marketing for Disneyshopping.com.

‘Everything we look at we are now looking at ways to let the guest make it their own,’ Barad said.

Online holiday shopping was expected to reach $26 billion in 2005, an 18 percent inc”

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