Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Packaging Pathology as Entertainment

Almost exactly a month ago I posed the rhetorical question, "Can anyone do anything about the pathology of today's workplace?" Well, assuming that the latest post on Caroline McCarthy's "The Social" blog has not been taken in by the latest Internet hoax, it would appear that Redline Films has posed a non-rhetorical answer, which is to milk the situation for as much entertainment value as it will yield. Here is most of her post:

If you thought Kid Nation was pushing the envelope, wait till you hear about this one. Production company Redline Films has just announced that you can now audition for its latest creative masterpiece, Office Fight. It's exactly what you think it is: it'll take co-workers who don't like each other and make them go face-to-face in a boxing ring.

Do you find this as supremely awesome as I do? Of course! To make it even awesomer, getting involved with Office Fight is easy and you can totally be part of it too! Just e-mail Redline, tell them who you want to pummel and why ("Jason smells like rotten cheese," or "Sean totally meant to let his pet python loose in my cube," or the serious stuff, like "Andrew cheated me out of a promotion and then ran off with my wife"), and if you have a valid claim, you're in like Flint.

The production company will then come to your office to shoot some spicy B-roll of how much you and what's-his-name hate each other, and then they'll train you for two weeks. Then you fight. If there's enough space in your office, they'll set it up right there, but otherwise, they'll hold the event in a local gym. The judges, fittingly, will be your other co-workers, and you'll have to wager bets in which the currency is pure unadulterated shame. ("If you lose, you have to wear a chicken suit to the office for the next week.")

Redline seems to have discovered that you do not have to invest in slaves to take a mass-entertainment approach to gladiator combat (or perhaps they have discovered that they can capitalize on the already existing enslavement, or serfdom if you are a Hayek reader, of today's office workers)!


America Jones said...

"the impulsion of mere appetite is slavery"
-- j.j. rousseau (of the social contract, 1763)

Stephen Smoliar said...

Much to my surprise, Rousseau is never cited in Hayek's Road to Serfdom; perhaps he anticipated what would happen if lawyers ever got their hands on the social contract!