I recently read an article on Mashable about a new “reality show” that is out this summer. I use quotations because it isn’t the traditional reality show we are used to, in that it is not actually being aired on television, but embedded on social media platforms. Once I read this I thought, “huh that’s interesting, I wonder how it works.” Apparently it is going to be a live stream, running 24/7 through Tweets, photos, and YouTube videos, with an additional 60 second (yeah, 1 minute) videos will be displayed on YouTube every day during the eight week duration of the “show.” The Mashable article can be viewed here. You’re probably DYING to know what this so-called reality show is about. It follows a group of high schoolers spending their precious last summer together before jetting off to their respective colleges. Anyone suddenly remember the famed TV show Laguna Beach from our youth? I sure am. The show’s Twitter handle @SummerBreak encourages its followers to follow each of the individual kids from the show, obnoxiously retweeting every little thing they say on the site. But, I won’t get into their awful use of Twitter.
I would love to talk about how ridiculously stupid the content of this “show” is and how much I loathe teens whose life motto is “LIVE EVERY MOMENT LIKE IT’S YOUR LAST <3,” I won’t. Instead I want to talk about the direction the producer has chosen to take. This world is becoming increasingly more about the social and digital platforms, which I think is great; it is a progressive way for companies to connect one-on-one with their consumers. I just don’t like the aspect of having a reality show strictly on these sites. @SummerBreak actually has a pretty impressive follower base (over 108K) however, the members of the cast have far less, ranging from 500-800, which I take to mean that viewers aren’t terribly invested in them. Their YouTube views range from 3,000-5,000 which means their fan base isn’t engaging with their content.
What really irks me is that the Mashable article says, “With regard to the removal of the TV screen, Parks said he doesn’t necessarily think TV is dead, but he does view social media as a powerful way of delivering content to Millennials, the series’ target audience.” Uh, no duh TV is not dead. Does this guy think he has invented this earth-shattering new form of television that will become the mainstream any day now? This whole thing has to take off first. I mean, imagine for a second if Mad Men episodes were just tweets and clips with weekly wrap-ups. We’d see tweets like: “@DonDraper: Cheating on Megan LOL #badhusband #sex #struggles.” I just don’t see this catching on, but I could be wrong. I am sincerely interested in YOUR opinion, so please leave your thoughts in the comments. Just for LOLZ I’m going to post some of their ridiculous tweets:
Thanks dudes, and let me know what you think of this new version of “television,” in the comments!