Thursday, January 28, 2010

Bump - The Show

There is a new web-based show that started recently called "Bump". Instead of describing it myself, I will quote their own description and give some commentary after.
BUMP+ The Experiment is an attempt to determine whether story can succeed where nearly four decades of angry rhetoric and political posturing have failed.

Inspired by President Obama’s call to people on both sides of the abortion debate to open the lines of communication and find workable solutions to the problem of unintended pregnancies, Yellow Line Studio is starting that conversation inside the safety zone of a fictional world based on real life situations.

Is our society willing to give it a try? How authentic are these characters? And how serious are we about an open, honest exploration of this controversial topic?

You tell us. Please.

The BUMP pilot premieres January 22, 2010. We can’t predict how it will end because we’re waiting for your input to finish the upcoming episodes.

That’s right – their choice is up to you.

Full disclosure: we’re thinking outside the ballot box here. (Real life isn’t that simple; and, besides, haven’t we all had enough of politics clouding this complicated issue?) We’ll be crafting the episodes to reflect the ongoing discussion on our website boards, so sign in and start talking. We can’t have a conversation by ourselves. Please be kind, though; and remember that we’ve already heard every argument on both sides. In this forum, we’re looking for authentic stories, honest communication, and – hopefully – a continuing dialog. We may even incorporate your experiences into future episodes; but no matter what, you have our promise that your feedback will determine the final decisions for our characters.

Watch the episodes. Share your story. Join the conversation. Their choice is (really) up to you
I have some serious problems with this concept.  The show is being done to start a conversation, but the issue I have is with the concept itself.  Should such a thing be left up to viewers, even if fictional?  Should a decision this big be made based on mere dialog alone without objective truth entering in?  Have you really "heard every argument"?

Their intent might be good, but I don't like the means.  Am I wrong?  Watch the first episode (below) and let me know.  I am not the only one who has reservations about this (see here and here for some others).


JC said...

I have some reservations of my own on this one. Their claim is that they're "thinking outside the ballot box here," yet that they'll "be crafting the episodes to reflect the ongoing discussion on our website boards." How is using the thoughts of the people on a random discussion board any different than a random survey, or for that matter, a ballot box? And what makes them think that the rhetoric will be any less angry in the case of anonymous online users than in the case of public debates or even private conversations?

Then there is your point about leaving objective truth out of the story. This will only be compounded by the fact that fiction often lends itself more to emotions--and ultimately to "subjective reality"--than to facts and "objective reality."

Kevin said...

This is sad and disturbing. It feels like a gameshow where you can win or lose. It is just so depressing that there is even a choice to be made. A person's life hangs in the balance of a tv show? That is sick. A lot of the show feels like a joke to these people. They are going to sacrifice their God-given free will to go with what other people think. There is no argument here; they should choose life.