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Huggable plush seatbelt cover

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20120264349 patent thumbnailZoom

Huggable plush seatbelt cover


A character based huggable plush seatbelt cover configured to attach to a vehicle seatbelt is provided. The plush seatbelt cover can incorporate pockets and zippered compartments to accommodate a variety of items that kids want or need to have close by during car travel. The huggable plush toy can attach to a shoulder strap to be carried by a child. An affinity membership program for kids can be created that can entitle members to special discounts on related products. A customizable website can include special offers at affiliate destinations. Various ornamentation can be included to create different characters.

Inventors: Robert Ciampitti, Keith Ablow, Amber Roback
USPTO Applicaton #: #20120264349 - Class: 446369 (USPTO) - 10/18/12 - Class 446 
Amusement Devices: Toys > Figure Toy Or Accessory Therefor >Fabric-covered Stuffed Figure

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The Patent Description & Claims data below is from USPTO Patent Application 20120264349, Huggable plush seatbelt cover.

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CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED ACTIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 61/475,902 filed Apr. 15, 2011.

BACKGROUND

Preparing a child for a long car ride can often be a very chaotic process. A child may require, or desire, to bring along many items to keep them entertained along the way. For example, today\'s young traveler may want to bring such entertainment items as small toys, pencil and paper, electronic devices (e.g., portable music players, personal data appliances, portable gaming systems), and other assorted knick-knacks. Further, once the journey is underway, the young traveler may struggle to retrieve and utilize the entertainment devices only to realize they are not easily accessible, or have fallen out of reach. In such circumstances, the parents may have to stop the vehicle or otherwise divert their attention from the road in an effort to retrieve the displaced items and place them back into the reach of the child. Thus, there is a need for a traveling stowage device to help keep such entertainment items organized and accessible.

In addition to providing a device for stowing a child\'s items during a car ride, there is also a need to help the child assemble, maintain and care for the collection of entertainment items, as well as the stowage device. It is known that children, like adults, enjoy and care for personalized items. For example, there is a sense of pride for a child in receiving a letter addressed to them, being issued their own library card, or earning a personalized school badge. Such personal items in a child\'s eyes emulate the responsibilities of adults and thus can inspire a sense of responsibility in caring for the items. Thus, there is a need to attach some degree of personalization to a stowage device to encourage children to care for it and its contents responsibly.

In an age of instant gratification, where technology enables travel across the globe with ease, a long journey whether by car or other means, can be a boring and uninspiring time. This can be especially true for children. It is known that for adults, their experience can be improved by earning frequent traveler awards, or feeling a sense of accomplishment by adding another stamp to their passport. Thus, there is also a need to provide travelling children a similar sense of entitlement, excitement, and rewards while travelling.

SUMMARY

An example of a plush toy according to the disclosure includes a monolithic shape with a soft exterior fabric surrounding a compliant stuffing, the monolithic shape having a head section and a body section, such that the head section is wider than the body section, a first soft securing flap attached (e.g., sewn, buttoned, or otherwise fastened) to a back side of the head and/or body sections and configured to attach the plush toy about a shoulder strap of a vehicle seatbelt, at least one exterior pocket located on a front side of the plush toy, such that the pocket is attached to the exterior fabric of the body section, and a first interior zippered pocket located inside the body section including a first zipper located along a side of the body section.

Implementations of such a plush toy may include one or more of the following features. A second interior zippered pocket located inside the head section including a head zipper located along a top side of the head section. The first interior zippered pocket includes a second zipper located on an opposite side of the body section from the first zipper, such that the first interior zippered pocket is accessible from either the first or second zipper. A membership card holder can be located on the back of the body section. The width of the head section is between 9 and 12 inches, and the width of the body section is between 4 and 5 inches. The length of the plush toy is between 18 and 26 inches. The monolithic shape resembles the letter T.

An example of a soft toy capable of functioning as a vehicle seatbelt cover and a knapsack according to the disclosure includes a T-shaped body with a head section and a body section, a first soft securing flap located on a back side of the T-shaped body, one or more exterior pockets on a front side of the T-shaped body, and a head section pocket located in the head section of the T-shaped body.

Implementations of such a soft toy capable of functioning as a vehicle seatbelt cover and a knapsack may include one or more of the following features. A body pocket located in the body section of the T-shaped body. The body pocket includes one zipper on each side of the body section. A detachable shoulder strap, such that the shoulder strap includes a primary loop and a secondary loop, and the first soft securing flap is configured to be inserted between the primary loop and the secondary loop when the soft toy is attached to the shoulder strap. The thickness of the head section is between 4 and 6 inches, and the thickness of the body section is between 3 and 5 inches. A second securing flap located on the back side of the T-shaped body. The first securing flap is disposed on the back side of the body section, and the second securing flap is disposed on the back side of the head section. The first securing flap is disposed along a first axis that is parallel to the body section, and the second securing flap is disposed along a second axis that is not perpendicular to the first axis. The width of the head section is between 9 and 12 inches, and the width of the body section is between 4 and 5 inches.

An example of a huggable plush seatbelt cover according to the disclosure includes exterior fabric means for forming a monolithic shape, such that the monolithic shape has a head section and a body section, stuffing means for expanding the exterior fabric means into the monolithic shape, securing flap means for attaching the huggable plush seatbelt cover to a vehicle seatbelt, an exterior pocket located on the outside surface of the exterior fabric means, and an interior pocket located within the monolithic shape and accessible through an opening in the exterior fabric means.

Implementations of such a huggable plush seatbelt cover may include one or more of the following features. A membership card holder means for attaching an ID card to the huggable plush seatbelt cover. A detachable shoulder strap means for securing the huggable plush seatbelt cover to a person.

In accordance with implementations of the invention, one or more of the following capabilities may be provided. A character based huggable plush seatbelt cover (i.e., a plush toy, a SeatPet) can be configured to attach to a vehicle seatbelt. The plush seatbelt cover can incorporate pockets and zippered compartments to accommodate a variety of items that kids want or need to have close by during car travel. The huggable plush toy can attach to a shoulder strap to be carried by a child. An affinity membership program for kids can be created that can entitle members (Very Important Kids) to special discounts on related products. A customizable website can include special offers at affiliate destinations and unlimited access to a ‘members only’ area of the website. Various characters can be created based on market demands. Cross-branded and complementary travel products (e.g., keychains, earphones, audio travel guides) can be configured to operate with a particular plush toy configuration.

As an example, and not a limitation, a plush toy is a soft stuffed animal and carry-all (e.g., knapsack, backpack) that attaches to a car seat belt and can serve two functions—it\'s various pockets and interior compartments are a place to keep the things a child might need or want when they are in the car (pockets are designed to accommodate music players, hand-held games, etc.) and the plush toy itself is a wrap-around pillow that makes car trips much more comfortable and kid friendly.

A website can also serve as the launching and activation point for a membership program which entails a credit-card like plastic membership card, personalized with the child\'s name and mailed under separate cover directly to the child. The card can entitle the member to discounts at kid-friendly places throughout the country. The membership program can leverage the power of a built-in age specific audience and significant and ongoing national media exposure to entice restaurants, museums, toy stores, etc. to become destination affiliates and offer members-only discounts. A point-of-sale advertising piece can identify affiliate destinations and serve to increase national brand awareness. A location based and searchable directory of affiliate destinations can be incorporated into the website.

The plush toy design can include an integrated holder for the membership card—to assist in making it easy to remember and always at the ready.

In an embodiment, the pockets on the plush toy can be configured to store short children\'s books dedicated to the adventures associated with different character embodiments (e.g., ornamentation) of the plush toy. Further, whimsical plush toy creatures can occupy the pockets of the plush toy, including functional accessories (i.e. ear buds, lip balm, candy).

These and other capabilities of the invention, along with the invention itself, will be more fully understood after a review of the following figures, detailed description, and claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIG. 1 is an isometric front view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover.

FIG. 2 is an isometric back view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover.

FIG. 3 is a front view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover.

FIG. 4 is a side view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover.

FIG. 5 is a bottom view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover.

FIGS. 6 and 7 are back views of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover with a single securing flap in the closed and open positions respectively.

FIGS. 8 and 9 are back views of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover with dual securing flaps in the closed and open positions respectively.

FIG. 10 is an isometric side view of a huggable plush seatbelt cover shoulder strap.

FIG. 11 is an isometric side view of a huggable plush seatbelt cover attached to a shoulder strap.

FIG. 12 is a back view of a huggable plush seatbelt cover with an integrated membership card holder.

FIG. 13 is a conceptual diagram of a web application associated with a huggable plush seatbelt cover.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Embodiments of the invention provide for a huggable plush seatbelt cover (e.g., a plush seatbelt cover, a plush toy, a SeatPet). This embodiment is exemplary, however, and not limiting of the invention as other implementations in accordance with the disclosure are possible.

Referring to FIG. 1, an embodiment of a huggable plush seatbelt cover 10 is provided. FIG. 1 is an isometric diagram of the front of one embodiment. A plush seatbelt cover 10 (e.g., plush toy) is a huggable toy including a soft exterior fabric and a soft stuffing or batting to give the fabric a shape. In general, huggable can mean a soft and plush object which may inspire a child to hold the item close to their person. The exterior fabric may be comprised of different sections of fabric and fasteners, but when stitched, assembled, and stuffed, the exterior fabric generally provides a continuous surface around the stuffing. The exterior fabric can be natural cotton or wool, or man-made materials such as high quality polyester, fleece, or other blends of soft fabric. A compliant stuffing can be natural fibers such as cotton or wool, or man-made high-grade polyester fiber. In an embodiment, the plush seatbelt cover 10 can include a head section 10a and a body section 10b, wherein the head and body sections 10a, 10b are constructed to provide a monolithic plush toy. In this sense, monolithic means a single, relatively rigid, whole. As described here, the concept of relatively rigid must be used in the context of a plush toy, which is generally soft and flexible (e.g., compliant, huggable, pillow-like) throughout. Hence, the term monolithic means that the flexibility of the plush toy 10 is generally consistent from the top of the head section 10a to the bottom of the body section 10b. The monolithic shape of the plush toy 10 provides the functionality of a head rest when attached to a vehicle seatbelt, and the functionality of a huggable toy when used outside of a vehicle.

In general, the plush toy 10 can be configured to look like animals, people, or other imaginative objects. Character features (e.g., ornamentation) can be affixed to, or integrated with, the exterior fabric. As examples, and not limitations, the head section 10a can include facial features 12 such as eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, tongue, hair, horns, scales, ears, and other ornamentation. The body section 10b can include similar ornamentations such as wings 14a, arms 14b, and legs and feet 14c. Other ornamentations can include gills, scales, tails, clothes, eyeglasses, hair clips, ear-rings, bracelets, tattoos, fingers, or other objects. The face of the plush toy 10 can be configured to include slots, or an elevated nose piece, and configured to store glasses. In an example, the mouth of the creature can include a pocket configured to accommodate a cereal box, or other snack package, to be accessible on a journey. The front of the plush toy 10 can include pockets 16a, 16b, 16c for storing items. The pockets 16a, 16b, 16c may include additional ornamentation such as personalization objects (e.g., embroidered name, monogram), an embroidered heart or other markings, such as a tribal tattoo.

The pockets 16a, 16b, 16c can be configured to accommodate things a child may need when they are in the car (e.g., music player, hand-held games, small books, and other functional accessories). In an embodiment, the pockets are made of a soft fabric (i.e., plush) and can be sewn on three sides with an opening on the top. Fasteners can be included to the front pockets (e.g., buttons, zippers), and elastic material can be added to help secure items within the pockets. The sides of the pockets can include extra material to allow for expansion (i.e., accordion pleats). The pockets may also include side walls with preconfigured through-holes to accommodate earphone, power, antenna, and other connections. In an embodiment, the pockets 16a, 16b, 16c on the front of the plush toy 10 are fasteners configured to receive customized device holders. For example, an Apple iPod® can be sheathed in a custom SeatPets™ iPod® case, wherein the custom SeatPets™ iPod® case is configured to attach to a SeatPet™. Other such detachable cases for other portable products are also envisioned.

As an example, and not a limitation, as depicted in FIG. 1 the plush toy 10 can be in the general shape of the letter “T” (i.e., T-shaped). For example, the overall length of the plush toy 10 can be between 18 and 26 inches. The width across the head section 10a can be between 9 and 12 inches, and the width of the body section 10b can be between 4 and 5 inches. The length of the head section 10a can be between 5 and 8 inches, and the length of the body section 10b can be 13 to 18 inches. The thickness of head and/or body sections 10a, 10b, can be between 3 and 6 inches. The height and width of the pockets 16a, 16b, 16c can be 3 to 4 inches each. Additional ornamentation can further increase the dimensions of the head and body sections 10a, 10b. A plush toy 10 may be constructed with other dimensions as well.

FIG. 2 is an isometric view of the back of a plush toy 10. The back view illustrates the head and body sections 10a, 10b, and includes a zippered body pocket 20a and a zippered head pocket 20c. A single soft securing flap 22 can be configured to secure the plush seatbelt cover to the cross strap of an automobile seatbelt. In an example, the securing flap 22 is comprised of the same soft exterior fabric as the plush toy 10 and the fastener is Velcro. The securing flap 22 can be sewn on one edge and thus opened on the other edge to accommodate the vehicle seatbelt. A vehicle seat belt can be positioned between the exterior fabric of the head and body sections 10a, 10b and the inside of the securing flap 22. With the flap 22 connected to the Velcro fasteners, and the seatbelt strap is interposed between the flap 22 and the plush toy 10, the plush toy 10 can remain located in the area of the seatbelt and the child when the vehicle is in motion. The exterior fabric of the plush toy 10 under the securing flap 22 can include an additional layer of soft fabric on the interior (e.g., nylon, polyester) to reduce the chaffing with the vehicle seatbelt. Similarly, the interior of the securing flap 22 can include an additional layer of soft fabric to reduce chaffing with the vehicle seatbelt. The securing flap 22 can also include other fasteners such as buttons, snaps, zippers, magnets, or hook and loop, for example. The securing flap 22 is constructed with soft material to help maintain the plushness (e.g., to encourage a child to hug the toy, to maintain the huggable-ness of the toy). The body pocket 20a can include a section of enclosed material within the body section 10b and a single zipper (or other closing device such as buttons, flaps, Velcro, snaps, magnets, etc. . . . ) to create a small storage space within the body section of the plush toy 10. Alternatively, a pass-through pocket can include zippers on opposite sides of the body section 10b. In an example, the length of the zipper on the body pocket 20a can be between 7 and 8 inches. The head section pocket 20c can include a section of enclosed material with the head section 10a and a single zipper (or other closing device) to create a small storage space with the head of the plush toy 10. In an embodiment, the body pocket 20a and head pocket 20c are a single pocket with two or more zippered sections configured to provide access to the pocket. In an example, the length of the zipper for the head pocket 20c can be between 8 and 9 inches, and the depth of the head pocket can be between 6 and 9 inches. Other lengths of zippers (or other closing devices) and pocket depths may also be used.

Referring to FIGS. 3, 4 and 5, with further reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, the front, side and bottom views of the plush toy 10 are shown. The ornamentations for the head 12 and body 14a, 14b, 14c are exemplary only and not a limitation. The head and body sections 10a, 10b, are both plush and pillow like (e.g., huggable). As depicted in FIG. 4, the general thickness of the head section 10a and the body section 10b is approximately the same. Some variation in the thickness between the head 10a and body 10b is expected based on the density of the stuffing material, the nature of the exterior fabric, and the ornamentation details. In general, the ornamentation for the head 12 and body 14a, 14b, 14c includes soft fabric that is affixed to the respective sections of the plush toy 10. The ornamentation can also be stuffed with batting or other material in increase the plushness of the ornaments. In an embodiment, the exterior fabric can be printed with one or more patterns which provide ornamentation for the plush toy 10. For example, a face can be printed on the head section fabric and scales, or other body features, and be printed on the body section fabric.

Referring to FIGS. 6 and 7, with further reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, a back view of an exemplary huggable plush seatbelt cover 10 with a single securing flap 22 in the closed and open position are shown. The securing flap 22 is exemplary only as other devices can be used to attach the plush toy to a vehicle seatbelt. The securing flap 22 extends along a portion of the head and body section 10a, 10b and is sewn to the exterior fabric of the plush toy 10 along one edge 22a. The sewn edge 22a can be a single continuous stitched seam for the length of the flap 22, or can be a series of stitched sections along the edge 22a. The flap 22 can be secured in a closed position with a securing device such as sections of Velcro 24a, 24b, 24c. Other securing devices such as buttons, zippers, hooks, snaps, clips, and magnets can be used. In an example, the length of the securing flap 22 can be between 11 and 12 inches, and the width is between 3.5 and 4.5 inches. The securing flap 22 need not be a continuous length and can be comprised of two or more separate flaps, each with a securing device. The flap 22, or multiple flaps, are configured to attach the plush toy 10 to the shoulder strap of a vehicle.

In general, the plush toy 10 is a huggable toy that can attach to the shoulder restraint portion of a car seatbelt. It is envisioned that the plush toy 10 can make car rides much more fun and comfortable for 4-9 year-old kids. The various pockets 16a, 16b, 16c and zippered compartments 20a, 20b, 20c keep the necessities (snacks, toys and electronics) within easy reach. A plush toy 10 can help make children much more comfortable on long trips, and can become a dreamy pillow with just a hug and a nod.

Referring to FIGS. 8 and 9, with further reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, a back view of an exemplary plush toy 10 with dual securing flaps 30a, 30b, in the closed an open position is shown. In this embodiment, the head section 10a includes a wide securing flap 30a which can be sewn to the exterior fabric along a seam 30a′ and secured closed by sections of Velcro 32. The body section 10b can include one or more securing flaps 30b attached to the exterior fabric along a seam 30b′ and secured closed by one or more sections of Velcro 34a, 34b, 34c. As described above, other methods of securing the flaps closed may also be used. In this embodiment, a single body pocket includes two zippers 20a, 20b. A head pocket is not shown, but could be included. The securing flaps 30a and 30b can be between 7 and 9 inches in length and 2 to 4 inches in width. In an embodiment, the head securing flap 30a can include additional head fasteners disposed at various angles from the body section 10b. In operation, these head fasteners can be used to attach the head of the plush toy 10 to the vehicle seatbelt. As a result, a user can adjust the angle of the head section 10a by selecting a different head fastener location.

Referring to FIG. 10, an isometric view of a huggable plush seatbelt cover shoulder strap 50 is shown. The shoulder strap 50 includes a primary loop 52, a secondary loop 54, and a buckle assembly 56. The secondary loop 54 can be sewn, or otherwise affixed, to the primary loop 52 at attachment points 54a, 54b to form an opening as shown in FIG. 10. The length of between the attachments points 54a, 54b on the primary loop 52, and the effective length of the secondary loop 54 are generally coextensive. That is, the primary and secondary loops 52, 54 are generally flat when the strap 50 is pulled straight. The buckle assembly 56 is configured to secure and connect each of the ends of the shoulder strap 50, as well as provide a way to adjust the length of the primary loop 52. In operation, referring to FIG. 11 with further reference to FIG. 7, the securing flap 20 of the plush toy 20 can be inserted through the loop created between the primary and secondary loops 52, 54. When the securing flap 20 is closed (e.g., via the Velcro fasteners 24a, 24b, 24c), the plush toy 10 is effectively attached to the shoulder strap 50 in manner similar to the way the toy 10 would be attached to a vehicle seatbelt. A young traveler may then transport the plush toy 10, and the contents therein, by placing the strap 50 over their shoulder or across their chest. As an example, a shoulder strap 50 can be made of 1 inch wide nylon material with a plastic buckle device 56. The primary loop 52 can be approximately 45 to 52 inches long, and the distance between 54a and 54b (i.e., the effective distance of the secondary loop 54) can be between 12 and 14 inches. Other dimensions and looping configurations (i.e., 2, 3, 4 loops) can be used.

Referring to FIG. 12, with further reference to FIG. 8, a back view of a huggable plush seatbelt cover 10 with an integrated membership card holder 62 is shown. The card holder is optional and can be affixed to the exterior fabric of the plush toy 10. For example, a child may insert a club card or other identification device (ID card) into the holder 62. In an embodiment, the ID card may represent membership in a VIK (“Very Important Kid”) program. Such an ID card can include, for example, the child\'s name, membership number, expiration date, a barcode, an RFID chip, or other information to associate the ID card owner with membership in a VIK program. In an embodiment, the ID card can correlate to the specific embodiment of the plush toy 10 (e.g., based on ornamentation such as color scheme, character type, character name).

In an embodiment, the plush toy 10 can be configured to store personal electronic devices and peripherals within head and/or body sections 10a, 10b. For example, the plush toy 10 can include small speakers and/or headphone jack, microphone and a wireless data link (e.g., blue-tooth), and can be configured to connect to cellular telephone, tablet PC, or other communication device. In operation, in an example, when the parent is talking to the child\'s grandparents, they can activate the data link to allow the child to speak to the grandparents via the speakers and microphone in the plush toy 10. The plush toy 10 can also be configured to interact with vehicle based entertainment systems (e.g., as a wireless headphone set, data entry device). In an embodiment, the plush toy 10 can also include an internal GPS system configured to capture location data and provide location specific information. Location data stored in the plush toy 10 can be transferred via a communication link (i.e., wired or wireless) to a personal computer or other data device. In an example, the location data can be viewed via a graphical user interface to highlight the travel history of the plush toy 10. Other location based services can also be provided to the plush toy 10 such as route information, weather, and downloadable content.

Each plush toy 10 can represent a specific character (e.g., based on ornamentation or other functional aspects), and can have a name, story-unique character traits, and experiences that make the character unique. The plush toy 10 can be designed to make it recognizable as within a product offering, with common design elements such as a large pillow-like head, an elongated body and a hidden heart beneath its top pocket. It can also have unique features that make it distinguishable from other products within a product line (e.g., ornamentation such as color, monster type, material of the exterior fabric, or patterns on the exterior fabric).

Referring to FIG. 13, with further reference to FIG. 12, a conceptual diagram of a web application 100 associated with a huggable plush seatbelt cover is shown. The web application 100 includes a server 102, a communication network 104, and one or more terminal units 106a, 106b, 106c. The server 102 can be configured to receive and execute program instructions from a computer-readable medium such as floppy disks, conventional hard disks, CD-ROMS, Flash ROMS, nonvolatile ROM, and RAM. A computer-readable medium also includes program instructions, or other information, received via a communication port transfer (i.e., network downloads). The server 102 is connected to the network 104 (e.g., the Internet) and is configured to send and receive data from a plurality of users (e.g., via terminal units 106a, 106b, 106c). The server 102 includes a database component and a graphical display component to capture and display information associated with a web based membership program, which can be associated with a plush toy 10. For example, a plush toy 10 can be associated with a nationwide affinity membership/discount card program just for kids. A ‘Very Important Kid’ (VIK) card will entitle a member to discounts and members only offers on a themed website running on server 102, as well as savings and special offers from an affiliate network of kid-friendly destinations throughout the United States. For example, a plush toy 10 themed website running on the server 102 can be accessed via the internet via desktop and laptop computers, as well as other personal computing systems (e.g., terminal units 106a, 106b, 106c).

In an embodiment, an on-line platform is provided so a child-owner of a plush toy 10 may log onto the web server 102 and register a newly purchased plush toy 10. Once a child-owner registers his/her plush toy 10 on the website, that child-owner of a registered plush toy 10 can be entitled to and offered access to VIK card program discounts and other member-only offers. In addition to such VIK features, once registered, a child can access a map of the United States (as well as a map of other countries and continents) along with a unique plush toy 100n-Line Passport. The child-owner of a registered plush toy 10 may click-and-drag states from the United States map (or foreign countries/continents) and drop those selected states into his/her unique plush toy Passport. This function will also display lines along the inside of the pages of the plush toy Passport so as to encourage the child-owner of a registered plush toy to journal thoughts and memories from his/her trip (with his/her plush toy) to that selected state. The website may also provide the child-owner of a registered plush toy with offers to purchase associated state/country stickers and other merchandise, as well as the ability to order a professionally printed child-owner custom plush toy Passport to be mailed under separate cover.

In an example, agreements for discounts or other item of value for ‘Members’ from restaurants, destinations, attractions, retailers and service providers (Very Important Kid [VIK] Affiliates\') can be executed. Entities offering a discount or item of value to VIK ‘Members’, after paying an annual ‘Affiliate’ fee, can receive point-of-sale ‘Very Important Kid’ branded display art that will identify them as an ‘Affiliate’. ‘Affiliates’ can also receive a listing on the ‘Very Important Kid’ website as well as the websites and/or destination affiliate directories of other membership groups who choose to enhance their membership proposition by becoming a ‘Very Important Kid Partner’.

The use of the ‘Very Important Kid Affiliate Network’ can be marketed to membership groups either dedicated to children or inclusive of children. In an embodiment, by choosing to become a ‘Very Important Kid Partner’, a qualified membership group, in exchange for an annual fee based on the number of members in the group, can use the ‘Very Important Kid’ logo on their membership card and, in doing so, convey all of the benefits associated with being a ‘Very Important Kid Member’ to their members. The ‘Very Important Kid’ logo can appear on membership cards in a manner very similar to the VISA or MasterCard logo on a bank credit card. The membership card can be placed in the ID card slot 64, and may also include account information, magnet strip, optical strips, and/or RFID technology to facilitate making transactions with the card.



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stats Patent Info
Application #
US 20120264349 A1
Publish Date
10/18/2012
Document #
13446566
File Date
04/13/2012
USPTO Class
446369
Other USPTO Classes
International Class
63H3/02
Drawings
7



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