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News Don Quijote to keep its store mascot after online uproar

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Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
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Don Quijote (ドン・キホーテ), the Japanese discount store chain known as Donki, faced a massive uproar from its fans when they announced last week that they were going to replace their famous mascot Donpen, a blue penguin which wears a Santa hat, with a much simpler logo. "Dojo-chan" would have been an anthropomorphic representation of the Japanese katakana character "do":

That prompted an outpouring of dismayed reactions online. Some fans posted photos of themselves in Donpen onesies, while others threatened to boycott Donki stores. Another user launched a poll asking which mascot Donki fans preferred. That attracted more than 33,000 clicks, with Donpen winning 93% of the vote. The change also appeared to have blindsided Don Quijote president Naoki Yoshida. He said on Twitter he didn't "understand the situation either" and had asked "relevant departments" for clarification. A few hours later, Mr Yoshida announced that Donpen would remain the company's mascot.

The company behind Don Quijote, Pan Pacific International Holdings, also apologised for the incident and said they appreciated fans' support for Donpen. Donpen was born in Antarctica and raised in Tokyo, according to the official Donki website. He enjoys "walks at night", and it's rumoured his appearance changes.


We members of Penguin Union 666 stand behind our brother in this grave miscarriage of justice and are preparing a petition for world wide signing to prevent the change in their plans in the future.
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