As someone who consumes a lot of iM@S crap, the word danketsu (団結) gets floated around a lot. The term just means unity in this context, but not knowing Japanese that well I can’t give you all the nuances of the term.
In my mind, the joy of fandom is partly based on sharing. It multiplies; it’s not a zero-sum game. It might be a zero-sum game regarding your bank account, but the things you get in exchange can be priceless, or so I think. So when the opportunity came for some bros and I to set up a flower wreath at the iM@S SSA concert this February, how can I say no? And by extension I want to share that joy with you as well.
You here meaning the fans of idolm@ster, and people who want to partake the joy of fandom. And it’s easy. The opportunity here is that you can financially back our plans to set up a ring of flowers decorated with a catchy English phrase (in the usual Japanese tradition of 2 or 3-liner plate) and a commissioned fanart, AND, send a message to the idols of iM@S.
What we will set up in the very near future is a page where you can donate via Paypal and it will give you a field to put in a short message. You can donate any amount (although Paypal does charge a fee so you have to exceed that) and then put in your message. It’s that simple. What we will do with your money is put it in our pockets to reduce our out-of-pocket costs of paying the flower vendor, the commission artwork, and making a booklet of your quotes. What we will do with your message is to screen it (this ain’t no im@s confessions), translate it into Japanese, and put both EN and JP text in said booklet. Because we aim to translate your words, you have to keep it short (maybe < 300 characters) and get it in before Feb. 1. Also because we plan to print it in a neat booklet. The flowers will be delivered by a flower vendor in Japan (Ever use an internet flower service to buy flowers for a wedding/funeral? Same basic idea). The booklets will be given to the idols at SSA (there’s a gift deposit box system setup for this).
We have been working at this for a couple months now, so things are already pretty much set design-wise. We are in the process of finalizing the deal with the flower vendor and figuring out how to print and deliver the commission artwork. We got an experienced call book maker on the booklets, so it will probably follow that kind of format. The total cost is still in flux but we’re looking at at least $400. Probably a chunk more depending on printing and shipping costs.
We’re also planning to print a bunch of the booklets for people who donated over a certain amount. Like $10 or $20. Not important but it just means we’ll have to pay for shipping LOL and do fulfillment. Also, we’re open to taking your donation in person if you happen to run into one of us, and you can send us your quotes via ordinary methods. We’ll figure out something.
At first, we want this project to be limited to American Ps. But it slowly expanded to English-speaking Ps on this side of the Pacific. Or NATO. Whatever. It’s kind of funny because our project has a USA-bent to it but I hope that doesn’t stop anybody. It’s also funny because we can’t just keep this to ourselves, by force or by will, it’s naturally “The World Is All One” kind of a thing. We do, however, hope that people will take this donation seriously. It’s not a big deal if you are not a fan, but I hope you consider liking iM@S! It’s the one thing that brings us together, and by contributing you become a part of it. This is not Kickstarter. This is danketsu.
If you have any questions, please post in the comments below. Hopefully the site will go live next week. The deadline will be ~Feb. 1st, so think about what you want to write!