Let Me On Survivor: A Retrospective

A look back at 2 years of the Let Me On Survivor Campaign
Written & Edited by Ian MacKenzie

BONUS FILMS: Click here to watch my original audition tape never seen by the public.

It's Official, Ian Throws In The Towel

Two years ago Ian MacKenzie of Vancouver Canada was fed up with watching Americans only compete on the CBS reality tv show Survivor. He dared to ask the question, "If they can starve on a desert island, why can't I?"

Such was the impetus of the "LetMeOnSurvivor.com" campaign, a grassroots initiative to ask CBS to change their ways and allow Canadians to compete. It started small. Ian set up the website and emailed a few friends, asking them to help spread the word. And spread the word they did. Within a few weeks, there were hundreds of signatures on the petition. Soon there were almost 1000.

The Campaign Gathers Momentum

The media started to take notice. Ian was featured on the radio, televsion, and print media, such as MTV Live, AOL.com, Entertainment Weekly Blog, and more.

It was also around this time that Ian decided to contact previous Survivor contestants and ask them to support the cause. Many past Survivors responded with words of encouragement: Jerri, Colby, Rob & Amber, Wanda, Brooke, Twila, Mike, Ian and more. And I thank them.

About 1 year into the campaign, I pulled together all the signatures up until that point, and created The Let Me On Survivor Final Report - a compelling case for why Candadians should be on Survivor. My arguments: 1) it would shake up the game and make it interesting, 2) it would attract even larger audiences from both countries, and 3) because I want a million dollars.

But what of the official response from CBS?

After all, why not let us, their northern neighbours have a chance on the consistently #1 show in our country? (at least until the last few seasons). Jeff Probst has spoken about the rabid devotion of Canadian Survivor fans. I figured it was time for them repay the favour.

Sadly, they have not budged. Neither has any Canadian television station stepped up to develop our own version (which is odd, considering many other countries have their own already). After two years of campaigning, Ian has decided to give up. Throw in the towel. Walk into the sunset, not in victory, but in defeat.

But as he fades into the distance, Ian looks forward with no regrets. He has decided to focus his energy elsewhere, on causes slightly more worthy. If you're interested in joining him, visit the new project Brave New Traveler, and for hilarity, visit GuntherTrilogy.com

Thanks to all the fans and past Survivors for your support!

>> Read past updates from the Campaign

Original Introduction - Dec 14,2004

I was channel surfing a few years ago when I happen to chance upon this man eating some nasty looking yellow grubs, in what looked like a tropical jungle. I couldn't look away. There was something eerily compelling about this scene -- and it wasn't long before I realized I was watching Gervase on the very first edition of CBS' "SURVIVOR."

Since then I've watched every season, (except for Africa, because I was traveling in Australia at the time). It's very difficult watching CBS Survivor from the couch, because it looks like the best time EVER. If anyone ever asks me if I would ever be on the show, I answer "In a second." There's simply no other show out there that comes close (except maybe The Amazing Race, which is also sweet, but I never got into that for some reason).

Yet year after year, I've been let down as various contestants fail to learn from previous Survivors. I wouldn't make their mistakes. Plus, those challenges are phenomenal -- who wouldn't want the experience of competing in a gigantic vertical maze on a tropical island? Some people say how uncomfortable it would be to get eaten alive by bugs and starve on some beach. I say it's 40 days out of your lifetime. There is little discomfort worth passing up the opportunity, as most returning Survivors will tell you.

So you may ask yourself, "Hey, if this guy likes CBS Survivor so much, why doesn't he just apply?" Well, there's only one problem...by some cruel twist of fate, the producers do not allow Canadians to be on the show. The closest we got was Kel, who wasn't even really a Canadian citizen by then, (and he got kicked off over that beef jerky thing pretty quick).

Well, I say enough is enough. The show has been on for nine odd seasons now and it's high time they let Canadians in on the action. After all,

* Canadians make up 10% of the CBS Survivor audience
* all the American sponsors sell the same stuff here
* Canadians live in igloos 50% of the year, so we're perfect for outdoor survival reality-tv shows

And so, as I have demonstrated, there is no reason NOT to let myself and other Canadians on the show. It would mix it up a bit, and give the Yanks some sporting competition. But it won't be easy convincing Mark Burnett to put me on. I need some public support, so please take a moment and sign the petition and tell your friends about this site.

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