EQAL, the “social entertainment company” founded by Lonelygirl15 and KateModern creators Miles Becket and Greg Goodfried, is soliciting its fan base to help add a substantial body of work to the Lonelygirl canon.
Dubbed LG15: The Show is Yours, the crowdsourcing contest asks viewers to create episode one or a “pilot presentation” of what will become an eight week spin-off series that incorporates and builds upon the mythology of the Breeniverse.
Interested parties must present a treatment for the “social show” and the winner will be responsible for producing at least two videos per week, along with “additional content such as pictures, text blogs, and interactivity.” An EQAL producer may also be brought on board to make sure the series stays on schedule and consistent with pre-existing storylines.
Here’s the pitch:
Drew at Tubefilter wonders if this is a bad omen for the brand. Yes. It is.
The fact that EQAL is potentially handing over production responsibilities to a dedicated third party is a very compelling, if not totally unprecedented aspect of the The Show is Yours. Yes, it means Becket, Goodfried, and co. get a mini-series for very low-cost, but they’re also providing a great opportunity for one burgeoning online video creator. Rarely, if ever, are the winners from crowdsourced contests for other online shows given this type of creative and logistical control.
That part is great. The bad omen is that the contest exists at all.
Having to create and publicize an event that asks fans to conceive of new characters and storylines looks like a bad sign for a brand that historically has had so much user interaction. In the early days of Lonelygirl, “some of the most interesting plots of the show were fan fiction stories, such as CassieIsWatching, Tachyon, Brother, OpAphid and NikkiBowerReports, all of which started unofficially and eventually became somewhat official parts of the story.”
Maybe The Show is Yours is a natural next step in the progression of a series that incorporated users’ comments and videos from the get go, but it seems if LG15 still had the same type of intense, dedicated following and cachet as it did when it first started out, it wouldn’t need a contest at all. EQAL would be able to pull ideas from fans’ creative contributions or tap one of a handful of viewers that, through his or her own love of the show, submitted thoughtful, well-produced video additions to the regularly scheduled programming.
Whether you think it’s an upgrade in the realm of interactivity or a sign of the degredation of the series, if you want a shot at being part of the LG15 Universe, get the details here.