Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Petition to Cancel "The Briefcase"

There's a petition on to cancel the show "The Briefcase", on which families in need are given a briefcase with $100,000 and given the choice to keep it for themselves or share it with another family. What they don't know is that the other family has the same briefcase and has to make the same decision.

The petition says The Briefcase is cruel because it gives people the choice to either be selfish or generous, and it has the potential to make people look bad if they decide to keep some or all of the money.

Okay, I get it. I get it. This concept isn't super nice. However, I don't think the show needs to be cancelled. Here's why:

  • The show has already been filmed. The people got their money. They signed contracts. They agreed to be on this show. They expect it to be aired. CBS makes their money off of ad revenue when the show airs, and that ad revenue is funding the money that the participants receive. The participants made their choices and they have their money.
  • This concept isn't new - remember the show Friend or Foe on the Game Show Network? Same concept. People knew that their choices with money would either positively or negatively impact others. Only that show was downright cruel - this show has a feel good ending in many cases.
  • People made their choices knowing that they're on reality TV. There was no secret that their choice would be made public. The one couple talked about how they were anti-homosexual, for goodness sake. They weren't deceived - they straight up said how they felt.
  • Reality TV is meant to mess with you. I recently read a story about I Wanna Marry Harry - remember that show? They straight up messed with those girls. Lied to their faces. Whispered behind their backs to make them believe they were marrying a prince. That is, in my mind, way less ethical than this show.
  • This show has now aired, and a second season would be very difficult because people know the premise. So once it's done, it's done.
  • People did benefit positively from this show. They got money. They chose their outcomes. They could have split the money 50/50 and everyone won.

So, should this show be cancelled? No. It's done, it's airing, and people made their own decisions. And some of them are probably enjoying their newfound money and fame right at this moment.

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