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Baron

The Gold Stars (worth $20,000 / $50,000)

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I have pointed out many times that shows like Montel and Maury constantly show kids that have gone off the deep end. Young boys that fight and curse like sailors. Little girls that dress like hookers. The show usually makes the premise that they are trying to get the kids help, but couldn't you get the kids help without exploiting the train wreck that is their lives? These shows are out to make money, and lets face it. People want to see this stuff. They want to be able to say, "My kid aint perfect, but at least she don't dress like that!" Oprah got rich doing this stuff. Her show has changed now, but you remember what kind of stuff she aired. Is that mind boggling too?

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Baron wrote

But besides that, I really do not think that every kid deserves an equal share.

First off, I want to say. Yes you better espimated that the kids would not be shown getting their own gold star. It doesn't bother me that I didn't accurately predict the final outcome in this case.

One big difference between my perception and yours (and most people agree with you) is that I believe we saw 1% - 2% of what happened, and therefor believe what we saw was very skewed\limited, not the reality at all. It is your belief we saw a very accurate portrayal of every kid, even the kids we did not see; if we didn't see much of peculiar kids, then you (and others) conclude that those kids did not contribute and are not worthy, if they were worthy, we would have seen it. And those who we did did see contribute but were not rewarded $$$$$ for their very best\strong\sincere efforts, such as Mike and Anjay, well from your perspective "Life sucks sometimes and you get screwed despite your best efforts".

Most definitely my outlook on life a glass is always at least half full. I'm not looking for reasons why something can't happen, or assume that the producers\CBS want to screw over these kids to make $$$$. Why give them 20K? Think about that for a moment. They could have made it $500 or even less and had exact same level of excitement\motivation. For kids this age, a Gold Star trophy worth nothing is a very big deal, realistically there wasn't a need to make it worth anything. If they were trying to maximize profits, why give away HUGE $$$$, college education amounts that changes lives, to some kids, but not others. And what about the Town Council? They didn't have a chance to award the gold star to themselves (50K gold stars). Highly fishy that those kids were not concerned about that, at least not that we were shown. Do you think they said to themselves "OH well, life sucks, not much we can do\say about it."? Naw, there was more going on there. Surely at least one of these kids was bright enough to ask "How come we [town council] don't have a chance to get a 50K gold star?" Somebody behind the camera had to answer the question and doubt the answer was "Life sucks sometimes, and right now it sucks for you, Sorry boys that's life". The producers, if they want could have changed things so the council was eligible for the gold stars, but they didn't. The only thing that makes sense to me is that they were going to make sure every one of these kids gets equal amounts AFTER they competed the 40 days. So yes, some get gold stars and others don't, but my hope is that the producers will treat all the kids fairly as far as $$$$$ they go home with, not just some.

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Why give them 20K? Think about that for a moment. They could have made it $500 or even less and had exact same level of excitement\motivation. For kids this age, a Gold Star trophy worth nothing is a very big deal, realistically there wasn't a need to make it worth anything. If they were trying to maximize profits, why give away HUGE, college education amounts that changes lives, to some kids, but not others.

Because the show needs crediblity to the viewers. If they were awarding $5 paper weights, or even $500 stars would that keep the interest of the RTV crowd? No way.

How do we know the council was not eligible to give the 50K stars to themsleves? Maybe they were and chose not to? I do not recall anyone ever saying the council was not eligible.

I beleive we saw 1% or 2% too. But, scenes of Greg using the outhouse or Taylor playing dress-up with a chicken don't further the show. The stand-outs were the ones that got the most air-time. There were others that stood out, like Olivia. But, did she deserve a star? We don't know. However, I don't think the stars were awarded for single acts. Also, I don't think the producers knew ahead of time, who was going to get the stars. They didn't say, "Oh, well Michael will get a star this week. Make sure you keep a crew on him constantly." No, they edited the show after it was done. So they had to sort through footage and splice together a story, so when the council awards the star to so and so for working hard, we see so and so... working hard. So yes, we only see 1% or 2%, but we see the 1% or 2% that is revelant to the show.

As far as equal conpensation behind the scenes. There is no evidence of this. We do have the $5000 rumor. You may not beleive that, but there's more to that rumor than what you are suggesting. 5K is 25% the value of the gold star and all you got to do is show up. To me that's fair.

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Port wrote:

Although the producers of KN may have had altruistic motives, I can pretty much guarantee you that CBS did not. They saw a show that was cheap to produce that would bring them money. Period. CBS is a business. I can see them doing a one time charity show for a kid's cause, sure, but not a season. It wasn't CBS' intent to show us "what kids can do..." it was CBS intent to make money. Maybe that sounds heartless and cynical to you, but surely you cannot believe CBS is more interested in those kids than in money.

I understand what you are saying that the show is on the air to make a profit. I agree, CBS's wants Kid Nation make them a huge sums of profits $$$$. I understand and agree; nothing wrong with that.

The difference I have is that you think it is strictly about the money and maximizing profits\ratings at all costs (children). You're assumption is the people who make network programming decisions have zero concern about children and are more than willing to push the limits legally and morally to get huge ratings. I am puzzled you think they don't have kids of their own, no morality, no sense that children shouldn't be exploited to maximum. It is like your perception is they are ruthless characters that we sometimes see in movies\TV who would sell their own children into slavery if they legally could do so.

I believe people at CBS want to make a profit, but aren't willing to go out and find a collection of kids willing do anything and everything they can to win a 20K gold star for themselves. The idea that you and others think they'd do it without blinking eye is so mind boggling off the charts. I am absolutely amazed that not only you think it is possible, but think is possible that a major network (CBS) would make such decision as if it was any other prime time show. If it gets good rating then go ahead and have children between 8 - 15 screw each other over for 40 days!!! WOW. Not just WOW, but holy crap in my pants WOW. If I were to see a survivor version with 8 -15 year old kids, I'd go check my shower because I'd know beyond all doubt that Bobby Ewing has come back from the dead yet again! Man oh man, if you and Baron are "playing" me with this one, Damn, I fell for it big time! I honestly can't believe you think it is a realistic possibility.

Port wrote

And please, don't think I'm name-calling.

I don't think that, and even if you were name calling, it wouldn't bother me. :animated_bouncy:

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Your problem is you take it to an extreme. KN, isn't 40 kids screwing each over for gold stars. It isn't cut throat. The show isn't geared for that. The producers are in control. What if Greg and Blaine decided they would lock Taylor up in a potty for punishment? They may have thought about it. We didn't see it, but it may have been suggested. But, it would never happen, because no adult would allow it.

A junior version of Survivor, same rules but with kids, I agree with you. Too much. CBS, wouldn't show it. But, KN... a Summer camp with kids having a chance to win a gold star? Nothing "mind boggling" about it. It ran along the edge at times, maybe even crossed it a few, but wasn't really that bad.

You don't agree with the star award system. But, the average viewer probably doesn't have a problem with it. Its like that in any competition. You have winners and you have losers. So where's the problem?

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Baron wrote

I beleive we saw 1% or 2% too. But, scenes of Greg using the outhouse or Taylor playing dress-up with a chicken don't further the show. The stand-outs were the ones that got the most air-time. There were others that stood out, like Olivia. But, did she deserve a star? We don't know. However, I don't think the stars were awarded for single acts. Also, I don't think the producers knew ahead of time, who was going to get the stars.

Yes, what we watched in 13 x 42 minutes episodes, was what the producer\CBS hoped would make for a good TV series and translate into good ratings. Undoubtably 90% of what happened would have been boring to watch after just a few minutes.

I agree, and firmly beleive, that adults behind the camera, did not suggest specific names or otherwise pressure the town council into awarding gold stars to kids the might make for a higher ratings; I'm surprised you don't think that base on what you posted in the past because you beleive a future version of Kid Nation is likely to be about watching children scheming, lying, making secret alliances, creating insincere friendships, backstabbing their new best friend who's only 8 years old, etc, etc. <insert rolling eyes here> :animated_bouncy:

Baron wrote:

You don't agree with the star award system. But, the average viewer probably doesn't have a problem with it. Its like that in any competition. You have winners and you have losers. So where's the problem?

You seem to be OK with the fact the Mike, Anjay, a maybe a few others who clearly were shown as worthy of gold star, going home seemly empty handed. Aside from the assumption they are getting paid a much smaller amount $$$$, can you help me understand how you think it is fair for the producers\CBS to send Mike and Anjay home with feeling they worked their ass off, but get nothing for their dedication to making Kid Nation a success. Is it that you think the producers just don't give damn? It's all about CBS's ratings and profits? Both Mike and Anjay were extremely high profile from start to finish on national TV for 13 straight weeks. Not like they were shown briefly and then faded into the background. If anything, in my mind, Mike and Anjay were major personalities for the entire season and helped keep the rating good enough that CBS didn't rank off the schedule. Desrvering? Taylor, as much as everyone hates that little girls guts and hopes she gets hits by bus someday soon, she's just as deserving too because she was the Nellie Olsen of Bonaza City, and that was good for ratings, and that why she got so much air time too.

I am making a clear separation between the illusion created for entrainment purposes (kids being award gold stars for their on screen efforts), and real life reality of giving 1 child 70K+ for her worthy efforts, a few others 20K, and the rest get nothing. These are kids, not adults, and kid's are by definition still developing new skills and maturity. Responsible\caring\understanding adults don't send some children home with huge sum of money that changes\improve their lives, and rest go home with nothing.

Baron Wrote:

You don't agree with the star award system. But, the average viewer probably doesn't have a problem with it.

Yeah, I also would make that same conclusion. I don't really have a problem with some kids getting gold stars and other not within the scope of the TV show. Winners\losers makes for good TV. And clearly they edited the entire season to specifically demonstrate that Mike and Anjay were worthy but going home without a gold star, yet shown not to be sore losers, so there another little life lesson being shown there.

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Baron wrote

Your problem is you take it to an extreme.

It's not really a problem, most often it's very intentional, but not always. However, I'll discuss it with my therapist next Wednesday and see what she thinks. I'm working with her because I have a problem with being a pathological liar. Come'on, don't you think all the stuff I post is a bit weird and obsessive? If I were someone else like, I sure would. :animated_bouncy:

Well I got to get back to Halo2. When I lasted saved the game I was getting hammered on by some nasty Drones. Just finished Halo a few hors ago and now I am already 2 hours into Halo2.

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you beleive a future version of Kid Nation is likely to be about watching children scheming, lying, making secret alliances, creating insincere friendships, backstabbing their new best friend who's only 8 years old, etc, etc.

That's me believes that. I'm not sure Baron has ever said he thinks the show will denigrate to such.

echo, have you ever been to a competition among children? Heck, have you ever seen a "friendly" game among a large group of children? There is often a lot of anger, backstabbing, hurt feelings, etc just to win the game. Not by all kids, not at all. However, from what I've seen there are always kids willing to do whatever to win. Haven't you ever seen a kid cheat at a boardgame? And even in those sporting event controversies we hear about at times it's not always a parent or coach who pushed the kid to cleat that other kid in the knee and injure him/her for life. Kids learn from adults. Kids watch Survivor and Big Brother too. It's not like those shows are on late-night or even late prime-time! Those shows are early prime-time and I know a lot of parents who let their kids watch with them. Kids do emulate what they see, especially if it will get them further.

Another example, those types of beauty pageants Taylor is involved in. Or even competitive dance. Three of my goddaughters are in competitive dance. I've been with their mother behind the scene. You should see how some of those mothers act. You should see how some of those girls learn to act. That whole stereotype of the "pageant queens" on kids sitcoms came from somewhere. You know the one, the little girl who is demanding, smiles to your child's face and says how they are bff, then puts blue dye or nair in your child's shampoo. That happens. In real life. It's not as uncommon in competitions as you think. In fact some schools have banned competitive sports/activities just for such reasons.

I've gone on and on about this so many times and I'm sure others are getting tired of seeing me make the same analogies and give the same reasons and supports for those reasons so I'm moving on after this. Just wanted to answer this one last time.

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I agree with some of your last post port. All children (and their parents) love to be winners. Thats why so many children sports are going to a no score game. At least thats what my nieces and nephews are playing in now. Parents and families are encouraged to root and clap for all the children. At the end of the game everyone says "good game". My niece (she's 8) is playing basketball today and there's no score. She loves it!

I can remember growing up where childrens' sports was a win/lose game. My younger brother was on a losing team and when his team played a much better team, the parents of that team was horrible, they had bad sportsmanship. I can remember it made my brother and his team-mates feel terrible. In the past years theres been alot on the news about how parents have gotten into some pretty bad fights at their childs' sports games. There's even been a couple of deaths. About 3-4 years ago in Palmdale Calif. A 13 year old boy took a bat and beat a boy to death because the boy teased him while he was up to bat.

And don't get me started about childrens' beauty pagents.....Several years ago a very close friend of mine thought it would be fun to put her girl (she was preteen) in a beauty pagent, she did it two times and realized it was cut-throat! The mothers were terrible and passed it on to their daughters. She was so surprised. She said she and her girl was only wanting to do it for fun, and quickly found out it's not the kind of fun they were looking for.

Back to the gold stars, yes I do and still wish all the kids would have gotten $$$$. If they don't I guess I'll just deal with it. If there is future KNs I think if the producers don't change it up, that we will see the show turn into a comp to see who wins the star. They showed a little of that this first season, once some of the kids saw the chance of winning they did pick it up and work harder. There was some children that really thought they deserved the star that didn't get one. In future shows I can see parents encouraging their child to be friends with everyone and work real hard and tell them "don't come home without a star."

I really liked this show and would love to see more. I just hope they can keep it fresh.

Lord, I didn't mean to go on and on. I think I'll also agree with port that its time to move on. JMHO and I value yours :animated_wave::pixiedust:

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Port, I really don't disagree with what you wrote about kids exhibiting bad behavior, cheating, and poor sportsmanship. There will always be kids that do that, and parents who look the other way when they see it happen. And parents who are obsessed with winning at all costs.

Prior to that you were suggesting that the producers and CBS will promote\authorize all those bad qualities to be part of Kid Nation. If a 15 year old wants to lie and deceived a naive 8 year little girl, you believe the adult behind the camera will smile and whispers among themselves "This is going to great for ratings, just wait until that little girl finds out she being screwed and breaks down crying."

It is one thing to have kids behaving poorly over the course of their lives, doing things that part of real life, because it is REAL. It a very different to intentionally create a kids version of Survivor that promote\allow those bad qualities to be part of game. Little league does have much of those bad qualities that you wrote about, but it is considered to be a problem that most parents want to avoid and reduced, it is not part of game. Survivor allows bad behavior part of the game, it would be absolutely irresponsible for adults allows kids in Kid Nation to emulate adult behavior we see on Survivor or Big Brother. It is my perception of Kid Nation is that the adults did shut down that kind of bad behavior quickly and\or the children were told in advance (off Camera) that certain kinds of behavior was 100% off limits. In other words, one rule might be "No secret alliances". I am sure they selected kids who in generally play by the rules, I highly doubt they selected kids who were known to be schemers, liars, cheaters in their real lives. It is my perception that CBS and the producers wanted to avoid Kid Nation becoming a training ground for kids wanting develop their ruthless Survivor like skills. Over the course of 13 episodes the general tone was up beat and the children were shown mostly in a good light. Based on my experience with kids, I tend to think it was likely there were far worse bad moments over the course of 40 days, and the producers showed good judgement by leaving the truly bad stuff out of the show. In otherwords, I think we got the PG version of what happned, not the PG-13 or R rated version. The R rated version would have seen these kids calling each other really nasty names and spiting out cuss words. We'd might see the beloved Anjay giving another kid the middle finger because the other kid told him to move back to India. You get the picture :)

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Port wrote:

I've gone on and on about this so many times and I'm sure others are getting tired of seeing me make the same analogies and give the same reasons and supports for those reasons so I'm moving on after this. Just wanted to answer this one last time.

Don't concern yourself with others might like or not liked. Say whatever you want as often as you want. If someone doesn't like what you post, they can either join the conversation, or they can go <BEEP> themselves if they have a problem. The Kid Nation discussion has been the best and most healthy exchange this site has had in a long time. The Darths are bright enough see that, and the ever invisible Morty can see that as well. :animated_bouncy:

You, Baron, TCS, JEDI, JOA, FETCH, FUSKIE, and a few others all have something interesting to say. You're all wacho, but at least you have something to say. It's easy to rack up 100s if not 1000s of posts and not ever say Jack, or just piss on Dick and other reality TV players.

I am course, am the best :cheshire:

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Even though some kids did not win any Gold Stars, I am hoping they have taken something from this experience that is far more life altering than a GS.

Here's to the future (and no, I'm not gonna channel Whitney right now) ;)

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I agree with you echo and in fact that latter part of your second post holds much truth. I have posted very little on the Kind Nation thread, but have watched all but one episode. I feel bad that all the kids did not get some monetary reward. I really thought that instead of what they did in giving out 50 thousand dollar stars they would give everyone some kind of monetary star. And i do think the kids that did not get a monetary reward took a lot with them from the experience of it all, how could you not, it is probably life changing for some, which is a good thing, but still I know deep down in their hearts, the ones who worked sooooo hard and did not get some kind of star are sort of hurt inside, they will move on, but I think it was wrong not to reward them all.

Out of all the kids there ya know Taylor bothered me the most, and I said in another thread that when she and her parents sit down and watch the show in it's entirety it will be an eye opener, as long as we can learn from our mistakes it is a good thing. If I was Taylor and saw the whole show and what a self-centered brat i had been, that would surely make me want to change, and if I were her parents and saw it(and they have and will) I would be mortified, because they are partly responsible for the way she presented herself. My brother and I were both in competitive swimming,and I played softball for many yrs, and I just was not raised to have bad sportsmanship, or to mouth off the way Taylor did, or to even presume in my own little mind that I was more pretty or better than the rest which is sadly how Miss Taylor acted darn near the whole show and we only saw part of it.

I am sure that there has been a lot of e-mails and letters sent to the network over the fact that they only gave out 3 50 grand stars at the end, couldn't they have taken that 150 thou and split in into a monetary award for all, because i think all of them deserved that much. :unsure:

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Fatcat wrote:

I feel bad that all the kids did not get some monetary reward. I really thought that instead of what they did in giving out 50 thousand dollar stars they would give everyone some kind of monetary star. And i do think the kids that did not get a monetary reward took a lot with them from the experience of it all, how could you not, it is probably life changing for some, which is a good thing, but still I know deep down in their hearts, the ones who worked sooooo hard and did not get some kind of star are sort of hurt inside, they will move on, but I think it was wrong not to reward them all.

I am going to repeat myself just a bit, if for no other reason to yet annoy a few people that already hate my guts way too much. :animated_bouncy:

Maybe the true reality is that some of these children got 70K, 50K, 20K, and the rest got nothing. Maybe the producers\CBS are that heartless and don't give a crap about children, and just like a few people who have posted here, don't have a problem with sending home some of these children with HUGE sums of money, and the rest getting nothing for their efforts. I admit they could be right, and I am just dead wrong.

If I were a producer or an executive at CBS that was involved with this production, you can bet I would be extremely vocal the right thing to do is to compensate these children equally. It is truly, beyond all doubt, mind boggling that any adult, producer, CBS, could send home one 14 child 70K while others with nothing $$$$. If the gold stars were simply trophies, than I'd be pretty much OK with it, because the TRUE reality is that the Gold Star was "peer recognition", it wasn't awarded based in measurable achievements. And the 20K was, as Baron stated it, to make the show compelling to watch on TV.

Yeah, all these children will be going home with a strong memories. Any well run summer camp is designed to have a huge positive emotional impact. Kid Nation was a summer camp tweaked into a reality TV series. In reality, the point you make is far more valuable to them in the long run than any amount of money they could ever take home. Children that grow up going to well run\designed summer camps have childhood experiences that influence their adult lives in very positive ways. For one thing, they don't create a TV show where some children go home HUGE winners, and others go home losers.

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After considering what Fatcat wrote, I've modify my thinking. It's not as important the kids get equal amounts of $$$$$. What is most important is they are sent home feeling that were winners, even if they didn't equal $$$$$. My focus on the $$$$ is basically a way of making\saying each kid was an important part of making the --->TV SHOW<---- a success. If the children feel good about the experience, and that they were individually a winner, not a looser, then I am OK with that. I surely wouldn't be a sleazy lawyer knocking on the door of any family attempting to convince the parents and brainwash a otherwise happy child by saying "You got the shaft, you got screwed, we need to sue CBS for......"

If Mike, Anjay, and others were sent home feeling like they worked their ass off, but losers, then yeah I have a serious problem with any reality TV series that does that. If they went home feeling like a winner irregardless of the $$$$, then I am some-what OK with that.

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A lot posted here. I don't have time to respond to it all. I just wanted to say. The rumor has it that all the kids were awarded 5K. I beleive it is true, because other shows give the runner-ups some cash, just for being on the show.

So, some kids got 75K, some 55K and some 20K. Based on these amounts what would be fair cash for those who didn't win a star? Just curious.

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Baron wrote:

So, some kids got 75K, some 55K and some 20K. Based on these amounts what would be fair cash for those who didn't win a star? Just curious.

The issue is not what the TV audience believe is real, it how fairly these children were treated FOR REAL by the producers. Hell, if the show wanted to give Gold Stars with 1 million each, I wouldn't give a rats ass if that is the "reality TV" illusion wanted create. What's important is that these children go home feeling they were treated fairly and not a loser. I know you don't care if some children go home feeling like they struck the mother load, and others go home feel like losers, so we just have a very fundamental difference on how children of this age should be treated by adults. You can't pawn off the the responsibility by suggesting it was the 4 children on the town council who made choices, because they were only following the rules that were designed by the adults. I bet these kids are bright enough, and not as greedy, to have wanted to share the $$$$ equally among themselves. Sofia maybe worthy of 70K, but another child shouldn't go home feeling a loser if that is the price tag. Clearly Sofia is a bright girl, and I wonder if she feels a bit bad that she got 70K, and others went home with nothing. She very well could be thinking to herself "I tried my best and got 70K, but I also know that my two good friends Mike and Anjay tried as hard if not harder than me, yet they went home empty handed. I'm not sure if that's really fair to them".

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Of course echo you are right. I just don't believe, and there is no evidence to suggest, that the payouts are any different than what we saw. I believe the 5K stipend is real and that's that. If there is something else, I think the internet will bring it out sooner or later.

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Well basically we are on the same page echo, I just stated that that 150 grand could have been put to better use, like givin all something, and something more than the stipend, I think it would have made all the kids feel good about their experience at Kid Nation, deep down I thnk some may feel hurt because they did not get any extra award, monatarily speaking, some of the kids that did not get the money reward sooo deserved it. Gosh what was the one african american kids name? The one that almost went home? I just loved him and I thought he really did deserve a star, well hell, I thought they all deserved a star in their own right. The only child I did not care for and did not think deserved a gold star was Taylor. She really acted up and she did not really change her ways, what we saw was her decide to go along with the program because she was not going to get to partake in the rewards, and she was not real sincere about it either,lol(my memory is just so bad on some of the names,lol)

I just read 2 posts up and what was in quotes, I just think above and beyond whatever stipend these kids got they all should have gotten something in the form of gold star or money reward, to not feel left out, emotionally left out, because rewarding some with huge amts of money and not others certainly would have left an emotional mark on some of those kids, the one thing they all have in common is that they are children, they do not yet have the adult skills to cope with the many things not recieving any money star may bring to the front.

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