Friday, April 9, 2010

If I Can Dream - my thoughts

I have been watching If I Can Dream since the beginning. I think the idea is innovative and shows where the Internet is heading. Simon Fuller is a visionary. The concept is sound and should be successful. However, once you throw people into a project like this, all this theory goes right out the window. When I first started watching, I first thought of Big Brother. Then, after a few days, I realized that this was nothing like Big Brother. People in the Big Brother house couldn't go out, had even more limited access to the outside, and, it appeared that they had even less privacy than our If I Can Dream house guests. So, I have stuck with the show because of it being unique in its presentation and what it is trying to portray.

Now, on to the topic at hand. As a mass communication/journalism major, I know that editing can make or break at story. We never edited to make the stories more sensational. The story had to stand on its own merits. We were also very careful not to edit where it would take what someone said out of context. I like the house because there is not opportunity to take back and or re-edit something. We see life as it unfolds. The Hulu If I Can Dream episodes are meant as a weekly synopsis of what went on in the house during that week. Of course, the editor exercises a certain amount of editorial views in the way the show is edited. The producers can't all the time control what the house guests say or do on the live streams. However, the episodes give the producers a chance to piece the story together as they see it. Those of us what watch the stream on a daily basis have seen things taken completely out of context in the episodes. The editing has portrayed several people in a very bad light. This editing puts undue and undeserved strain on the house guests. Because if I were there, I would certainly hesitate to invite my friends over. I certainly wouldn't want my friends to be made the fool at the producers expense. So, I think the executive producer needs to take a step back and look at the product that is being produced on a weekly basis.

Hiding from the camera or mics have other ramifications for our house guests. I certainly don't like it when they go running off camera and turn off their mics. I feel it detracts from the true meaning of the show. None of the house guests should feel like they need to whisper, shut off mics, or go to an area where the cameras don't cover. This project was meant to show what it takes in Hollywood to be succesful in the entertainment industry. We want to see it all, whether it be good or bad. We, as viewers, are not privvy to exactly what restrictions the house guests are under. It would be nice to know what restrictions there are for them. We might feel differently about what is going on now if we did know those things they cannot do or discuss. When they do this whispering or going out of camera range, it makes me think that they are talking about the production itself or the management. I wouldn't want to be discussing that on camera either. Common sense would dictate that it would be better to directly confrony the producers on these issues and resolve problems with them. Hiding from cameras or microphones is not the answer.

Lastly, complaining is directly tied to the hiding issue. Complaining about the rules does nothing but aggrevate the situation. That complaining also influences others on the show. Pretty soon everyone is grumbling. Again, as I stated about, the best way to resolve the complaining is to directly confront the producers. If not, the complaining could backfire on the house guests. I could say the day that the producers are adding more cameras and reducing the blind spots. That would be less privacy than they have now. I would hate to see them lose the rare privacy they get now. We all realize that they are under a strain to be on camera 24 hours a day. That in itself can cause strain between people. So, we have to udnerstand their situation. Again, my advise to the house guests - speak to the man in charge, the executive producer, about you concerns and complaints. He is the one man that has the power to make those changes and to make your life better.

Thank you house guests for letting us in your lives. Thank you Michael Herwick for making this entertaining, and thank you Simon Fuller for giving this project the light of day. May all of you be succesful in all your careers.


  1. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on the show's format...this is indeed a unique project. I like that I've watched from the beginning because I think it's going to be really cool to see it evolve.

    There's no precedent for this kind of entertainment, really, so it's neat to sort of see the show handle obstacles and growing pains just as the artists themselved do.

    And interestingly, I heard Kara saying after one of the episodes that she felt like the episodes blew some of the things they did or said out of proportion or took it out of context. I kind of thought it would be hard to do that and get viewers to buy it because of the live feeds, but I guess there's a lot that happens outside the house that we don't see until they show us what they've chosen for the Hulu episodes.

    Keep the thoughts coming! I love discussing this kind of thing and am glad you're blogging about it. Yay Internet!

  2. Yes, I think there is an agenda that only the creator and producers know. I can't imagine a project like this without a plan, outline, or script.