29 May 2015 - Outrage over new BBC reality show
Outrage as BBC creates a new show dubbed the 'Working Class Hunger Games'
Helena Horton (The Telegraph)
People have been outraged at a new show by the BBC, called 'Britain's Hardest Grafter', which aims to pit people on benefits or earning less than £15,500 a year off against each other, competing for a cash prize.
The UK's lowest-paid workers will have to complete gruelling tasks, as an aim to cash in on the success of 'poverty porn' such as Benefits Street.
The show has been dubbed by people on Twitter as the 'Working Class Hunger Games', and many have complained that it is exploitative.
'Britains Hardest Grafter' will feature 25 individuals, and the BBC is hoping to attract a mix of the under-employed, the unemployed and those earning the minimum wage.
It is hoped that they will 'prove themselves' in a series of challenges.
Mark Sweney (The Guardian)
The BBC has defended a new TV reality show pitting unemployed and low-paid workers against each other for a cash prize, which has been accused of echoing film the Hunger Games, arguing it is a “serious social experiment”.
The show, called Britain’s Hardest Grafter, is seeking 25 of Britain’s poorest workers with applications limited to those who earn or receive benefits totalling less than £15,500 a year.
The five-part BBC2 series will pit contestants against each other in a series of jobs and tasks with the “least effective workers” asked to leave until one is crowned champion.
The winner will receive a cash prize of about £15,500, the minimum annual wage for workers outside London.
Adam Sherwin (The Independent)
An advert for applicants asks “Have you been out of work since leaving school? Are you sick of living off your parents? Are you losing out on jobs because you’ve got no experience? Have you got a degree but not a graduate job?” The producers are seeking “people who feel passionately about the issues in the UK today”. The series will investigate “what effects people in the workplace”.
The producers, previously responsible for Benefits Britain 1949, in which claimants volunteered to live by the rules of the first year of the welfare state, asked Graduate Fog to publicise the show on its website “so we can attract more graduates who are struggling to secure a decent living wage.”
Twenty Twenty said participants would be paid a compensatory figure “not below the national minimum wage” for the length of their contribution to the programme.
This new TV show might not sound like something that would actually ever happen IRL, but sadly, it is and it is happening on a screen near you very soon.
BBC Two are launching a new show under the working title Britain's Hardest Grafter, a show where the lowest paid workers in the country can compete to win a year's salary. Yes, for real.
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"29 May 2015 - Outrage over new BBC reality show ", La Clé des Langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029), mai 2015. Consulté le 28/09/2023. URL: http://cle.ens-lyon.fr/anglais/key-story/archives-revue-de-presse-2015/29-may-2015-outrage-over-new-bbc-reality-show-