Hi WaltWiz. I saw that you made a lot of changes to the dates on the Sesame Street die-cast cars (Tyco/Fisher-Price) page. I put those dates together based on the packaging, catalogs and a couple of Matchbox Cars books. What are your sources for changing all of those dates?
The year a vehicle was produced is, for the most part, not quite the same as the year it was released (which I thought we could go by from now on). The 1997 Tyco Preschool catalog (which I don't have personally, but have seen pictures of on eBay), for example, lists the first six vehicles (which are dated 1996, indicating that they were produced that year) as being new for 1997.
(Have you seen my message regarding Tyco/Fisher-Price catalog scans, by the way?)
I did see your message about that, I'll see what I can do to get all my scans up. I'm really glad that you're interested in building out these toy pages!
I think we ought to use the copyright/production dates, which are the clearest and easiest to validate. The pictures of the packaging on the page say that the first set was produced in 1996. I don't know offhand when the Toy Fair catalogs are produced -- is the "1997 catalog" prepared and sent out in 1996 for sales in 1997? It seems like you're adding +1 or 2 years to all the dates on this page and some other pages, and I don't think that's the right way to handle it.
Toughpigs wrote: I think we ought to use the copyright/production dates, which are the clearest and easiest to validate.
I don't know offhand when the Toy Fair catalogs are produced -- is the "1997 catalog" prepared and sent out in 1996 for sales in 1997?
I've used the production and release years on a few articles before. Generally (with a few examples, of course)...
most items produced in 1995 were made for and released in 1996 (the packaging of the original Tickle Me Elmo is dated 1996, but the plush itself (both the version made completely by Tyco themselves (model number #62715) and the version produced after Tyco was acquired by Mattel (model number #32715), which is additionally dated 1997) is dated 1995)
most items produced in 1996 were made for and released in 1997 (the first six die-cast vehicles were among these items)
most items produced in 1997 were made for and released in 1998
most items produced in 1998 were made for and released in 1999 (notable exceptions: the Magic Talking Kermit the Frog plush and items themed to The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland were released in and are dated 1999. Items produced/released during this production/release *season* now bear the Fisher-Price logo on their packaging)
As for "was the catalog prepared and sent out in 1996 for sales in 1997?", I'm pretty sure catalogs made for the Toy Fair proper were prepared for and sent out to retailers/sales(wo)men in February of the latter year, when the convention began or was already underway. Catalogs like this one and this one may have been prepared and sent out in, say, 1997 or 2001 for sales in 1998 or 2002, before the Toy Fair rolled around (hence why the latter one is labeled "Pre-Toy Fair 2002").
Okay, it sounds like you know a lot about Tyco and Fisher-Price releases, which is great. Can I ask how you know these things? For example, saying "during this production year, Tyco Preschool's New York office is repurposed into that of Fisher-Price Brands/Friends" -- it sounds like you've got some inside info?