Tag Archives: Ambassadors

The LEGO Ambassadors program is a community engagement program run by the LEGO Group to solicit input from the adult LEGO fan community. The LEGO Group also occasionally provides information back to the community through LEGO Ambassadors who represent various LEGO Users Groups (LUGs) and online communities like The Brothers Brick.

LEGO Ambassadors nominations all over the Web

We’re not the only ones nominating LEGO Ambassadors for Cycle 7 of the program.

We’ll add to this list as we encounter more nomination processes as we learn about them. Feel free to suggest links in the comments.

LEGO Ambassadors Cycle 7 nomination process for The Brothers Brick [News]

UPDATE: Voting is now underway for this cycle.

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As LEGO announced earlier today, nominations are now open for the 2009/2010 or “Cycle 7″ of the LEGO Ambassadors Program. To keep things manageable, I’m posting the process we’ll be using here on The Brothers Brick separately from LEGO’s announcement.

LEGO Ambassadors logoFirst, some of you may be wondering what the LEGO Ambassadors Program is. Glossing over LEGO’s official definition, the program is designed to gather feedback from LEGO fans and provide that feedback to The LEGO Group. Although communication from LEGO does occasionally flow back to LEGO fans, the primary purpose is to flow information to LEGO — product and quality feedback, suggestions, demographic data about the adult fan community, and so on.

Second, I won’t be accepting any nominations myself to be a LEGO Ambassador for the next cycle. I still believe in the value of the program, but I’d like to focus my LEGO energies more directly on The Brothers Brick, Classic-Castle.com, SEALUG, and the other LEGO fan communities I belong to.

Third, we learned from the way we did things last year and we’re making a few adjustments. Feel free to discuss these changes and make suggestions, and we can make further tweaks along the way, if necessary.

Finally, an online community like ours that’s centered around a blog has some unique considerations that are different from other LEGO fan communities, such as online forums or offline LEGO clubs. Before we begin nominating people to represent The Brothers Brick in the LEGO Ambassadors program, I want to share a few thoughts based on the discussions and nominations last year.

  • The successful nominee must be able to communicate with you, the readers. Practically speaking, this means the LEGO Ambassador would need to be a contributor to The Brothers Brick.
  • That’s not to say that the successful nominee must be a current contributor! In the open and democratic process I’d like to see us follow, it’s possible that you may nominate and ultimately vote for someone like an active commenter instead of a current contributor. This may mean bringing the nominee on board as a team member.
  • This is the nomination process for The Brothers Brick; other LEGO fan communities will be nominating LEGO Ambassadors themselves. I’d like to ask you to avoid nominating LEGO fans who aren’t active here in this community in some way. Being a regular reader or even being blogged frequently doesn’t necessarily equate with being an active participant.
  • As the Editor-in-Chief, my commitment is to bring you a high-quality LEGO blog experience. To ensure this for all of you, I must reserve the right to say “No” occasionally — including bringing someone on to the team who doesn’t share our blogging philosophy or vision.

Phew! Enough words from me.

Here’s how this is going to work on The Brothers Brick:

  1. Between now and June 10 at 9:00 PM Pacific Time, leave a comment on this post with your suggestions for people who you would like to see nominated. Nominating is not the same as voting.
  2. On June 10, I’ll tabulate all of the nominations. Each nominee must receive two additional comments of support to move on to the voting stage.
  3. Between June 10 and June 13, I’ll contact each nominee for a brief bio and “platform.”
  4. On or before June 13 June 17, I’ll post the bios, platforms, and a public poll so all readers can vote on who they want to represent them.
  5. On June 27, we’ll close the voting to ensure we have enough time to create the nomination package that The Brothers Brick will submit on the nominees’ behalf.
  6. On or before July 1, we will submit up to three nominees for consideration by The LEGO Group.
  7. Around July 8, LEGO will announce their picks for the next cycle of the Ambassadors program.

Okay, readers, nominate away!

Nominations open for LEGO Ambassadors Program Cycle 7 (2009/2010) [News]

First, the complete announcement from The LEGO Group:

Hello LEGO Enthusiasts,

We’re happy to announce that the nomination process for LEGO Ambassador Cycle 7 is now open.

The LEGO Ambassador Program is designed to give the AFOL Community a direct line into the LEGO Company. The Program is essentially a gathering of community representatives that speak on behalf of the larger communities they are a part of. This group is able to bring forward the interests, concerns and questions directly to LEGO Employees.

Who’s allowed to nominate?

Any AFOL Community Group (online or on the map) will have the opportunity to submit nominations from their group (up to 3 people if they so choose). Not everyone can be selected for the program in order to keep the group manageable.

If you choose to submit a nomination it does not mean that your candidate will be chosen, but it does mean that your group will have just as much an opportunity to get involved in having a direct representative in the LEGO Ambassador Program. We will try to get a diverse group of people who are able to represent the whole AFOL community as good as possible.

Groups can certainly nominate someone already in the Ambassador Program, but the program has a two term limit in order to opportunites for more people to be involved. After a term out of the program, a previous Ambassador can be re-nominated (this rule only started with cycle 6 so all current Ambassadors are still eligible).

A group that submits a nomination for the LEGO Ambassador program should be established and known within the LEGO Community.

What should a nomination have in it?

  • Name and age of the nominee.
  • Where is the nominee from?
  • Which Group does this nominee represent?
  • Does this person consent to being nominated (Please do not submit a nomination on behalf of someone you have not discussed with beforehand).
  • Explanation of who the nominees are, what their activities are, and why they would be a good representative of their community (at least 3 testimonials from members of nominating group are required)
  • Key interests of the nominee (themes, building styles, and some examples of their building)
  • NEW!!! Platform – The nominations should now include a list of the goals that the nominee and the community he/she represents are looking to accomplish as part of the program. Remember the LEGO Ambassador Program is all about the AFOL community having representation into the LEGO Group, so this is an effort to have you think ahead as to what you really think would benefit your communities the most.

When is the Nomination Due?

July 1, 2009 by midnight GMT. If a nomination is received after this time it will be automatically rejected. The new cycle will be announced on approximately July 8, 2009.

Who Should the Nominations be sent too?

Nominations should be sent directly to [email protected]

What might a LEGO Ambassador be committing too?

  • LEGO Ambassadors are committing to represent their communities interests to the LEGO Group.
  • There are projects that Ambassadors can take part in, it is up to the individual to decide what they may or may not be interested in working on. It all comes down to how they feel they can best represent their community.
  • Online discussions will be held for the Entire group of Ambassadors that will include members of the LEGO Community Team and other LEGO Employees as well.
  • In order to get the most out of the program you should be willing to give some time to in order to help discussions along. If you don’t give time to it then you may not be dishonoring the nomination you received from the community.
  • There is no NDA requirement to take part in the LEGO Ambassador Program for Cycle 7. There may be an instance where a special project will come up and the Ambassadors may have to sign an NDA to participate in that, but it will take place in a separate forum in order to limit confusion as to what can be said outside of the Ambassador program. Otherwise, anything shared in Ambassador Discussions can be shared with the AFOL Community.

    This next session of the Ambassador Program will last approximately one year.
    Thank you all. Your nominations are very valuable for helping the LEGO Community Team choose the next round of LEGO Ambassadors.

    Steve Witt – LEGO Ambassador Lead
    &
    Tormod, Jan, Jim, Lenka, and Phil
    The LEGO Community Team

Next, I’ll be posting separately about how this is going to work here on The Brothers Brick. (And to consolidate comments where they’re most relevant, I’m going to lock comments on this first post.)

LEGO wants to hear from you! [News]

The LEGO Group would like to hear from LEGO fans like readers of The Brothers Brick in a new online survey.

Read on for more information, including results from the December 2008 survey.

Note: For our American readers, note that commas and apostrophes are reversed in numbers. For example, 2,4=2.4 and 1.000=1,000. I’ve also added links in a few places.

As Adult or Teenage Fans of LEGO, you bring an important perspective to the LEGO Group. We respect your creativity and passion for the LEGO brand.

In December 2008, we did an online survey to learn more about the global AFOL (defined as ages 20+) and TFOL (defined as ages 13-19) communities and for your information, we have listed the key findings below. Now we ask you to take this survey again. It include some of the same questions, but also a set of new questions for you. These surveys will be conducted on a quarterly basis this year.

Please take a few moments to complete this short online survey to let us know your opinion on how we are doing.

You might notice that the link refers to the LEGO Kids Inner Circle; this is because Satmetrix, which hosts that site, is also supporting our efforts to track AFOL/TFOL opinions. Rest assured that this survey is for AFOL’s and TFOLs only.

Here are some of the key findings from the December 2008 survey:

  • The survey was completed by 6.500 (!) AFOLs and TFOLs. 19% of respondents were TFOLs, 81% was AFOLs. 94% were male, 4% female and 2% did not want to share gender.
  • When asked about likeliness to recommend LEGO products and services to friends and family, AFOLs are more likely to recommend than TFOLs. When asked what the LEGO Group can do to improve willingness to recommend, most frequent answers was, “better pricing”, “re-release classic sets”, “less custom made pieces” and “no more stickers, print on bricks”. This feedback has been communicated to relevant business units within the LEGO Group.
  • 47% of AFOLs/TFOLs are NOT members of a LEGO User group. Among those who are members of LEGO User Groups, they are in average members of 2,4 LUGs.
  • In average AFOLs and TFOLs are spending in the area of USD 1.000/EUR 700 on LEGO product annually. 20% of this is spent on second hand purchases.
  • Favorite websites include Peeron, LEGO.com, The Brothers Brick, shop.LEGO.com, Eurobricks, Brickshelf, Bricklink and Flickr.

Thank you,
The LEGO Community Team

Take the Survey

LEGO Designers want our input on future play themes

FINAL UPDATE: Thanks for all the suggestions, readers! We’ve passed on your ideas to LEGO. Look for other opportunities to submit ideas to The LEGO Group through The Brothers Brick’s LEGO Ambassadors in the future.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: LEGO tells us that they didn’t intend for this discussion to take place in public, since that enables their competitors to watch the discussion and steal all your great ideas! So, we’re locking comments, removing the ones posted so far (85!) and asking all of you to use the Contact Form at the end of this post to submit your comments instead.

You don’t need to re-submit your suggestions if you had already left them as a comment; we’ve saved all the comments so far.

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LEGO Designers have asked the LEGO Ambassadors to help brainstorm ideas on future play themes. Here is the original message:

My name is Phil McCormick; I am a Senior Designer at the LEGO Group working within a small concept group specializing in new theme generation.

We are looking for new LEGO set opportunities within the Play Themes line-up. Play Themes are sets involving characters and stories, where the minifigure always plays a key role. The big theme this year is Power Miners. Some sets from the past include: Agents, Aqua Raiders, Exoforce, and Mars Mission. Usually the stories are conflict-based (good vs. bad) and revolve around treasures or missions. The stories that accompany Play Theme sets help spark the imaginations of our target group: boys aged 7-9.

Currently we are in an “insight phase,” gathering inspiration for the next big Play Themes opportunity and we would really like your input. We hope to involve you as much as possible for the next few months as we take in the ideas. Please submit ideas for themes as detailed below. Limit your words to a few sentences; we encourage you to submit pictures, drawings, MOCs, to accompany each story. Feel free to involve your greater fan community at this point–the more ideas the better.

Things we do look for:
-Simple, well understood themes (Usually, placing a “twist” on a known universe works well).
-Unique Model expression, or play experience to accompany the set.

Things we do not look for:
-Castle, or IP (Star Wars/ Indiana Jones/ Sponge Bob/ etc…). They each have devoted project teams which are separate from us.

The deadline for submissions is Jan 12, 2009; but we do encourage you to post earlier. Thanks and we look forward to your input!

Create a new, never-before-seen, LEGO Play Theme! (Place words and images under the following categories)

Theme Name (something short and catchy):

Characters (who is good and bad guys?):

Conflict (why do they fight, and what do they fight over?):

Setting (where does the story take place?):

Background Info (if relevant):

Please use the Contact Form below to submit your suggestions, using the format requested above:

Before you click Submit!

  • We won’t be able to pass on your suggestions if they don’t follow the format described above.
  • LEGO cannot use suggestions based on IP (intellectual property) owned by other companies, such as Halo, Lord of the Rings, or Pirates of the Caribbean.

7979 Castle Advent Calendar available in US, Canada on Sept 26 at noon [News]

UPDATE (9/26/08): You can order your copy of the set by following the directions in How to get your 7979 Castle Advent Calendar, currently at the top of the front page.

A couple weeks ago we found out that 7979 Castle Advent Calendar would likely not be available in some of the markets where LEGO is normally available, including the US and Canada.

Today, I’m pleased to report that a very limited number of this set will be made available starting Friday, September 26 at noon Eastern Daylight Time (9:00 AM Pacific).

The set will not be made available to the general public through the LEGO Shop online, so you’ll need a special code from us. With that code, you’ll be able to call the LEGO Shop at Home service, give them the code, and order up to two (2) sets per household.

Note: If for some reason Brothers-Brick.com isn’t available for you around noon EDT tomorrow, the code will also be made available through the LEGO Ambassadors representing the various LEGO fan communities, including Classic-Castle.com.

This is great news for the LEGO fan community here in North America, and demonstrates the power of coming together behind a common cause and the persistence of our advocates on the LEGO Community Team.

Please check back again tomorrow at noon Eastern (9:00 AM Pacific) for the code you’ll need when calling LEGO Shop at Home.

Why the US has the lowest LEGO prices

I’m sure many LEGO fans across the world have wondered why the US has the lowest LEGO prices while countries in Europe and Asia have significantly higher prices, oftentimes twice that of the MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) for a LEGO set in the US. There are even countries where LEGO costs up to three or four times the prices in the US. Here is the answer from Mads Nipper of LEGO’s Corporate Management.

Our selling costs in Europe and Asia are higher than in the US because of the size of US market and retailers (economies of scale). Furthermore, the US market is by far the most price competitive in the world. These factors combined mean that we have for years priced our products higher in eg Europe than the US. In recent years, the difference has been increased due to the weakening US dollar – but we have consciously decided not to let this (hopefully short term) weakening of the dollar hurt the US consumer. And in order to stay profitable as a company, we cannot decrease our European prices – especially seen in the light of increasing cost pressure on oil, labor etc. Finally, final pricing in the market place is obviously determined by retailers, which is something we cannot and will not influence.

Wait. Who exactly let Keith in?

I’m extremely pleased to announce that Keith Goldman has joined The Brothers Brick as our resident Columnist.

Keith is one of those LEGO fans of near-mythical proportions. Having met Keith in person, I can report that he stands nine feet four inches tall (that’s twelve meters for you Canadians), and is able to levitate his entire LEGO collection with his mind. Despite his telekinetic abilities, Keith has four arms (six metric). To fit in better with mere mortals, Keith is able to change size and shape at will.

Here’s a photo of Keith (center) with his coterie of adherents, better known as KeithLUG — yes, the man has his own LEGO Users Group:

Keith is perhaps best known for his bloated dioramas, including The Omicron Weekend, built with one third of all LEGO bricks in the Western Hemisphere by a division from the US Army Corp of Engineers over the course of a six month period. Naturally, Keith directed the troops remotely with his mind.

Keith is also a LEGO Ambassador from 2008 until whenever he feels like it, bringing order to the LEGOverse (and MOCPages in particular).

As a Columnist for The Brothers Brick, Keith will apply his “oratorical tradition of uninhibited or unbridled commentary” to semi-regular editorials on LEGO-related topics. Hey may also deign to grace us with his own creations from time to time.

Without further ado, please welcome Keith Goldman to The Brothers Brick!

LEGO wants your ideas for LEGO City 2010 [News]

Although the set designs for LEGO City 2009 have already been finalized, The LEGO Group would like to get your input on what you’d like to see in 2010 and beyond. This is your chance to influence the future direction of the LEGO City product line!

So, in the comments on this post, use the format I’ve included below to give LEGO your suggestions.

Guidelines and legal stuff:

  • All submissions must fit into this format — please, no rants or rambles! ;-)
  • Submit your suggestions by July 28th.
  • Target age range of 5-10 years old.
  • Link to one inspiration picture for your overall submission, whether a LEGO creation (yours or otherwise) or something from real life. (Optional.)
  • All rights related to any suggestion or submission made by you through your comments are hereby assigned to The LEGO Group, who shall be entitled to exploit the suggestions and submissions in any way The LEGO Group may want now and in the future.
  • What themes would you like to see the City Design team work on? What are the essential models for that theme?

    Name of the theme: [          ]

    Short description of the theme:
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    Possible set idea #1 (with short description):
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    Possible set idea #2 (with short description):
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    Possible set idea #3 (with short description):
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    Nannan, Tim, or I will send LEGO your suggestions between July 28 and August 4.