| On October 7, 2008, Debbie
Schlussel and Pamela Geller broke the story about the Fisher Price (Mattel)
marketing the Little Mommy Cuddle & Coo Doll, a doll that she claims states
"Islam is the Light" (See: Debbie Schlussel's
INDOCTRI-Nation: Fisher-Price Doll Tells Your Kids, "Islam is
the Light" and Pamela Geller's
BABY DOLLIE TALKING DAWAH ....bwahahaha).
In response, on October 7, Mattel, the parent
company of Fisher Price, issued a press release on their
Statement by: Mattel, Inc.
Re: Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo Dolls
--- End of Mattel statement
The Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo dolls feature realistic baby sounds
including cooing, giggling, and baby babble with no real sentence structure.
The only scripted word the doll says is "mama."
There is a sound that
may resemble something close to the word "night, right, or light." To avoid any
potential misinterpretation, we have eliminated that segment of the sound file
from future production.
Because the original sound track is compressed
into a file that can be played through an inexpensive toy speaker, actual
sounds may be imprecise or distorted.
We remain confident in the high
quality standards of our Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo dolls. If consumers have
any questions or concerns regarding any Mattel or Fisher-Price toys, they may
contact our consumer relations center at 800.524.TOYS (8697) and we will be
happy to assist them.
We take every call from our consumers very
seriously and do our best to help address their concerns
This week, a group calling itself Moms Asking
Mattel for Accountability is planning protests outside of several stores
nationally, as parents have recently discovered the doll on store shelves while
they happened to pass by the doll with a built-in proximity detector. The
protests are scheduled for Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when many
retailers make their money for the year during the Christmas shopping frenzy.
Boycott Watch contacted Mattel / Fisher Price, but
found itself at a brick wall. Juliette Reashor
(firstname.lastname@example.org) the Senior Manager for Public Relations at
Fisher-Price was able to send us a statement, but essentially refused to even
hear our questions and then tried to derail our questions by asking for our
sources, which we obviously refused to reveal.
Boycott Watch took the liberty of examining the audio posted on the
website and found that the there were several segments of audio, all
divided by short moments of total silence, indicating that the audio was in
fact most likely recorded in a professional studio or at the very least in
professional studio conditions. The last segment of the audio was clearly
compressed and sped up audio. While we were unable to totally reverse the
compression and pitch changes, we were able to slow down the audio to reveal,
in our opinion, that the audio clearly stated "Islam is the light." We posted
that audio here, both regular and
slowed down, so you
can decide for yourself what the audio contains.
When we examined the audio graphically, there is a definite clear "T" at the
end of the word "Light," which you can see circled in the following graphic.
To us, this indicates the audio is not a
"misinterpretation" as Mattel states. Rather, we believe that anyone with basic
audio editing software and skills will come to the conclusion that this was, in
fact, actual words spoken, and that the words "Islam is the light" were
intentionally placed in the audio cut.
remain: What is Mattel's Quality Assurance procedure for imported and domestic
goods? Since Mattel was able to conduct a simple examination of the audio we
did, did they in fact examine of audio once a complaint was made? If no, why
not? If yes, why did they do nothing? If there was a reason to examine the
audio, which there clearly was, why didn't they examine the audio or act upon
The Mattel press release stated:
"The Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo dolls feature realistic baby sounds including
cooing, giggling, and baby babble with no real sentence structure. The only
scripted word the doll says is "mama."
asks our readers to listen to the
slowed down audio
here and tell us if you hear "Islam is the light."
The Mattel press release continues: "There is a sound that may resemble
something close to the word "night, right, or light." To avoid any potential
misinterpretation, we have eliminated that segment of the sound file from
Based on our examination of the
audio, Boycott Watch believes these words are willfully inserted, not the
happenstance of an infinite number of monkeys in a room with typewriters. We
also believe that Mattel was the victim of a trick, but one they could have
avoided by doing simple quality assurance examinations, and later recalls.
The Mattel press release continues: "Because the
original sound track is compressed into a file that can be played through an
inexpensive toy speaker, actual sounds may be imprecise or distorted."
Boycott Watch examined the audio using off the shelf
retail audio editing software anyone can purchase online, and we listened to
the audio using both computer speakers and headphones. In both cases, we heard
"Islam is the light." We also saw graphic of the audio which we saw and heard
as a definite letter "T" at the end of the word "Light" at a spike point of the
Was audio stating "Islam is the
light" inserted into the doll? We will let you decide, but it is worth pointing
out that our sources tell us the chips may have been made in Indonesia, a
Muslim country. While that is not an excuse, if that information is true, it
may solve part of the mystery.
Mattel has the
obligation to make sure their products are proper, and that includes not
promoting any religion or political issue. It appears to us that Mattel did not
do their due diligence in product manufacturing and testing, nor do we believe
they took the proper action to correct the problem once they were made aware of
it over a month ago.
When a boycott effort is
brought to the attention of Boycott Watch and we determine it is worth checking
into, we try to conduct a he-said / she-said examination of the facts so the
consumer can determine what the truth is for themselves. In this case, we
examined the evidence, but Mattel essentially refused to help us gather
information that may clear them. We gave Mattel ample time to do respond to our
questions, which included notifying them we will publish something by Tuesday
morning. Still, Mattel chose to remain silent.
Fred Taub, President of Boycott Watch said "This
reminds me of subliminal advertising techniques - a message has been inserted
into a product to influence opinions. I do not believe Mattel approved the
message, but they apparently failed to properly examine products manufactured
in their name oversees. Just like lead found in toys; this is another example
of the real price of shipping American jobs overseas."
While we believe Mattel was most probably duped in this case, we still believe
Mattel failed to conduct a proper due diligence quality assurance examination
of the products they manufacture oversees. Additionally, we believe we
witnessed several failures within the corporate communications department.
Based on the information presented, Boycott Watch
believes the words "Islam is the light" was in fact purposely inserted into the
audio and that Mattel did nothing about it and later acted as if they did not
care. Boycott Watch therefore concludes that any and all boycotts based on this
issue are based in fact.