CW orders up the internet works for Gossip Girl. But I'm not satisfied.

Posted by: Burth Helm on May 17, 2007

Well, the prize for most ambitious internet tie-in at this week’s television upfronts goes to the CW. During that network’s presentation to advertisers this morning, Entertainment President Dawn Ostroff announced that its pole position, “The O.C. meets Manhattan” pilot, Gossip Girl, will launch with a multimedia website featuring just about every type of social media you can click a mouse at. Fans can write blogs, edit video clips and songs into their own music videos a la Jumpcut, create profile pages on a Gossip Girl-themed social networking site, click to order the clothing worn on the show, and (sigh, of course) walk around a 3-d massively multiplayer online world a la Second Life.

I like that they are trying all of these features out. But here’s my problem: As with just about every TV internet extension out there, they’ll all be next to worthless if the show doesn’t attract a seriously rabid following. TV programmers are still putting the internet in the “icing on the cake” category. National Bingo Night, I predict, will turn its TV viewers into web visitors more successfully than anything we’ve seen yet. But what I really want to see is an internet extension strategy for a television program that actually attracts new viewers and brings them from the web to the TV. Let me know if you think you see one.

Also, at the end of this whole thing I think I’m going to hand out an award for this season’s most so-stupid-it’s-great reality show title. So far it’s a toss-up between the ABC show about obese people who walk across America to get in shape (Fat March), and the CW show Farmer Wants a Wife. Stay tuned, Fox is this afternoon.

Reader Comments

james Smith

May 23, 2007 1:38 PM

California resident and my wife, Wendy Alane Wright, has embarked on a 10-week, 550-mile walk from Boston to Washington D.C. as part of a new ABC reality show. “Fat March”, slated to air in August will follow 12 super-sized contestants on their journey to lose weight and win cash.

Wendy is also singer who wants to get the pounds off so she can get out on the road and tour to support her CD “As I Am”, released Jan 2007.

“Fat March” is not Wendy’s first time in the spotlight. Wendy was lead singer of the European musical group Def La Desh, who had two top 40 hits including “Feel The Rhythm.” She has also opened for or performed backup vocals for numerous notables including, Wayne Brady, Candy Dulfer, Johnny Lang, Billie Myers, Rose Royce, The Four Tops, Tatjana, Jeff Trachta, Solomon Burke and more. As you can see I am very proud of my wife and I think she is a heck of a singer!

The Wednesday before Wendy left on her big TV adventure, she said to me, “I don’t know how I let myself get so big, I don’t know what I was thinking. I was treating my body like I had another one in the bank. I think the structure of the show and the group support of other contestants will be exactly what I need to help me get this weight off.”

I am wishing Wendy well on her amazing journey! Yes, 2007 is Wendy’s time to “walk out of the background” and shine, so to speak, with an incredible debut CD, a new physique, possibly tens of thousands of dollars richer, and an experience of a lifetime.

To show support for Wendy and her march go to her website www.myspace.com/wendyalanewright.

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News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

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