Creators: Matt Bledsoe and Troy Hitch of Big Fat Brain
Start Date: Dec 2007. Third series October 2009.
YSAP is brilliant in so many ways. It is very simple yet very deep, it is genuinely funny and the creators are really exploring the possibilities of 'distributed storytelling.' Furthermore, what started as a 'why don't we just make it' impulse, which initially wasn't sponsored by Adobe, has allowed them to forge a strong relationship with a sponsor and demonstrate a perfect form of product integration in their follow up series Agency of Record which features Adobe CS4. A new episode of You Suck, a prequel with a pre-breakdown Dionnie using Photoshop 4 on a Mac Power PC, is promised soon. This will be distributed via their latest project, the Big Fat University where they continue to use the teaching of software as the basis for a comedy. This time the series is a place rather than simple a set of videos.
Here is a short extract from an interesting interview with mobilized tv: MATT: The one thing we learned is that there’s a big difference between “TV on the Web” and a real Web 2.0 experience. Once we found out we had an audience, we decided that we should take them on a little different ride. Rather than having them passively wait for each episode, we started building in experiences that happened outside the actual content. For example, Donnie Hoyle decided he wanted to auction his wedding ring. We actually posted it on an eBay auction and 50,000 people came in four hours. Maybe 70 or 80 people actually bid on it and got it up to $750 - and it was a $5 ring from the pawnshop. In eBay, there’s an opportunity for the buyers to ask the sellers questions about the product. We had hundreds of people ask funny questions about the series and the character. They were asking things like, If this ring comes with infinite sorrows, what happens if I buy it and my sorrows are not infinite? The answers were just as funny as the question. We were ripping them out 15 and 20 an hour. And people were cutting and posting the questions/answers and putting them on blogs. Within 24 hours, there were over 10,000 mentions of the Q&As on blogs and on various news sites. TROY: What we decided was that this was the real opportunity. We had the audience, but what did we do with them once we had them? We took them on a ride. Out of the 10 episodes, we had four or five different off-content experiences that ranged from Facebook pages to a real corporate website for the fictional characters to work at during the day. What we discovered is the idea of distributed storytelling. The content is only the beginning of the story. If we’re touching the audience as deeply as we think we can, they become willing to participate in the story and it becomes something wholly different than watching TV.