If you’ve been following this blog, you know that I have, for some reason, been battling against crappy television.
I sent the following to the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council a few weeks ago:
Hello. I have sent this concern to Global Television directly, but heard no response.
This “show” is a blatant scam, for several reasons. In sum, they make implicit promises (e.g., that it is possible to get through, or that the puzzles they present are solvable) that are not kept, which defrauds people of money. I do not believe that such an unethical practice should be encouraged by allowing it air time.
I have laid out many of the details of my concern in these blog posts:
I hope there is something you can do about this. Thank you very much for your time.
My letter was forwarded to Canwest/Global (the company that airs, but does not produce, the program). I recently got a response. The letter can be viewed here.
I will compose a formal response soon. But a few things worth noting right away:
1) Staring at an unsolvable puzzle for 2 hours is not entertaining nor informative for any age, interest, or taste.
2) Having it be for ages 18+ is no excuse. It’s like, “but officer, the person I pickpocketed was 18! Should’ve known to be on the lookout for criminals.”
3) They did not address the implicit promises that are broken (e.g., the fake timer, the non-ringing phone, the random timing of getting on the air). Tiny text at the bottom does not excuse the lying host blabbering up top.
4) There is clearly not one and only one answer to each puzzle.
This last point is exemplified by last night’s “episode”:
The “correct” answer was 449.
Plugging in the same assumptions as the last bus/cat/leg puzzle does not get to the “correct” answer (even after accounting for, say, one girl having a leg off the bus, or one basket off the bus, etc.) The scam is in including assumptions that cannot possibly be uniquely derived from the question. Can anyone use their psychic powers to divine what arbitrary assumptions could lead to 449?
P.S. I found it rather funny when the host slipped up last night and said “euros” instead of dollars. It highlights that this cheaply produced crap is pumped in from halfway across the world just so Global can make a few bucks.
P.P.S. Here are some videos you might enjoy. 🙂