Monday, March 24, 2008

Reality TV has totally lost the plot!

I was reading this morning when I came across an alert to stop the NBC show, The Baby Borrowers.

The entire concept of reality TV befuddles me. I cannot understand the attraction of watching so called "real life" looks into dysfunctional people's lives. Why watch degradation, social dysfunction and just plain odd people? Why not watch something that reveres the beauty of the human spirit?


Presented as a "unique social experiment" the reality TV show "The Baby Borrowers" places real infants in the care of unrelated teen couples to "test" their ability to withstand the demands of parenthood and their relationship's strength to survive the pressure.

The show originated as a BBC production. This fall, NBC is rolling out its own version for a US audience. It films couples between the ages of 16 and 19 attempting to care for infants, toddlers, children, and eventually teenagers. Local authorities, concerned about the physical and emotional risk to the children, called on the BBC to cancel the show. Their requests were ignored, and social workers hoping to oversee the filming were turned away. Despite the protests in the UK, NBC seems equally determined to roll out their production of the show, describing it as an opportunity for the couples to "...peer into the future and see what they (and their partners) might be like if they remain together and decide to build a family."

The Natural Child Project is voicing its concerns to NBC and calling on producers to entertain people without jeopardizing anyone's mental health and happiness. Read the Open Letter to NBC by Jan Hunt, Director of The Natural Child Project. Send your letter of concern to:

Mr. Jeffrey Zucker
NBC Entertainment
3000 W. Alameda Avenue
Burbank, CA 91523

I'm stunned that real life parents are willing to entrust their own infants to strangers to be exploited for NBC's profit.


Cerwydwyn said...

Finally you have asked a question I can answer, at least for myself (and you said it, too, wrt to some Nanny show!) It makes us feel superior. We humans are very much attracted to the idea that we are better than most of the rest of the species and reality TV proves it to us, over and over again.
Now about those idiots sending their children into the arms of teen, pretend parents...I'm way too smart for that ;-)

Jan Hunt said...

The letter I sent to NBC was returned to me today - I'm not sure why, because the Burbank address was given to me by NBC, and Jeffrey Zucker does have an office there.

I just called NBC again and was told to resend my letter to this address:

NBC Viewer Relations
30 Rockefeller Plaza
New York, NY 10112

Sorry for this mix-up!

We've corrected the address on our website.


Jan Hunt, M.Sc., Director, The Natural Child Project