The Next Internet Millionaire: Reality Programming Moves Online

I dislike reality shows. I mean I passionately dislike them. If every reality show on tv went off the air I would consider that a good thing. And yet today as I was going through my daily blog reading I came across mention of Joel Comm’s The Next Internet Millionaire enough times that I had to watch and give it a chance. It’s an hour (50+ minutes) I could have spent doing something else. Did I mention I dislike reality tv. I dislike it just as much online as I do offline.

Let me be fair to Joel, the contestants, and everyone who put The Next Internet Millionaire together. It’s not as bad as I probably made it sound above and if you happen to like reality shows you might like this. It’s basically a stripped down version of Donald Trump’s Apprentice. The first 15 or so minutes introduces the 12 contestants who all seem like decent people and then the 12 become two teams where they have to complete the day’s challenge. The losing team goes back to the judgment room to determine who gets eliminated. The production is not quite up to Trump’s standards, but it’s actually better than you might expect from an online show.

If you like reality shows and you also have an interest in internet marketing you’ll probably enjoy this online version of reality programming.

A Missed Opportunity For Teaching

What I had been hoping for was a little more learning for those watching. For example in this first episode the two teams get a lesson from Mark Joyner about Simpleology, which aims to simplify your day so you can get more done. As someone who wakes every morning wanting to do more than I think I reasonably can in a given day I was looking forward to the next few minutes of the show. Unfortunately while the contestants get to learn, we don’t.

I think the show missed a great opportunity to teach us as it’s teaching the contestants. Sell us on the idea that not only are we watching who will be come the next internet millionaire, but that in watching we may become the next one after that. Help the rest of us become better internet marketers instead of having us watch yet another group of people compete and make presentations about something we never really get to see. Give us 15 minutes worth of education and then let us watch what the contestants do with their new knowledge

If I was only looking for entertainment I could think of more remarkable things to occupy my time.

Had I been able to learn something I probably would be more inclined to watch next week and follow along till the end. As it is this might be the only episode I’ll watch. But again in all fairness to the show I’m not a fan of realty programming in the first place and I suspect that anyone who is, especially if you like The Apprentice, will find enough here to keep you watching till the end.

Not exactly a ringing endorsement from me I know, but my guess is those of you who would be interested still are despite my opinion and I wanted to let you know about the show. I think new episodes will be out on Fridays so this might make for good weekend watching. And for all I know I’ll end up giving it another chance myself.

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4 comments

  1. hmmm, I have seen the show mentioned on many blogs that I read regularly. I have to admit that I am a reality show addict! I am not sure if I have the time to invest in yet another show too. I think I will give a try this week and see how it works.

  2. I’m with you in that I seriously dislike the majority of reality television that exists today. I’d heard about The Next Internet Millionaire, but hadn’t felt compelled to search it out.

    A lot of reality shows try to make the claim that they’re teaching us about human nature, or how to be better parents, or whatever. As you so rightly pointed out, however, most of them just show what happens, they don’t use the opportunity to inform us. I think that’s why I tend to be attracted to channels like the History Channel or TLC or Discovery. You can find shows that both entertain and inform on these channels.

  3. Khalid if you like reality shows you’ll probably like this. The Apprentice is the only reality show I’ve seen more than once and The Next Internet Millionaire is pretty similar in how it’s structured. Even though I’m not a fan of reality programming I thought it was done pretty well. You can also download tge show and watch it at you convenience.

    Kristine I’m with you on not liking the genre as you can tell. One of the things I don’t like about them is they aren’t real at all. When you know you’re in front of a camera you act differently. Most of the people on the shows aren’t being real. They’re doing what they can to turn their 15 minutes (or is it 15 seconds now) of fame into a few more minutes.

    John you might be right. In fairness to this episode I know they had to devote a considerable amount of time to introducing contestants. The show will be able to use those 15 minutes for something else which I do hope will be to teach us something. It’s why I’m willing to watch the next episode to see if the show does add that teaching component.

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