Survivor is great and all, but we can't forget about
the rest of the world's problems. When you get a moment, please
visit the following organizations:
Made Trade Fair
Make Poverty History
June 30, 2006 - Two New Interviews
It's been an interesting few weeks since the last update.
First of all, in case you missed it, I appeared on an edition
of MTV Live wearing little more than a CBS Survivor buff and
dedication. I was also interviewed on a Calgary radio station
about the upcoming movie and status of the petition.
I talked with host Rob Breakenridge on The World Tonight
(Calgary) about the popularity of CBS Survivor, and why we've
never created a version of our own up North. We also discuss
islands, and if I've ever thought of using guerilla tactics
on Mark Burnett.
Also, thanks to Kelly (another huge Canadian CBS Survivor
fan) she sent in a radio clip with Jeff Probst on Loveline.
She called in to ask Jeff point blank why they haven't let
Canadians on the show. His answers are surprising, and more
than a little interesting. He also talks about the history
of the show and why they favour very smart and very stupid
Well that's about it for now. I'm sleuthing my way through
various avenues of CBS Survivor's history and attempting to
uncover why Canada has never created our own version. Also,
I've had plenty of encouragment emails on Let
Me On Survivor: The Movie - but I need your audition tapes!
So gather them up, tell your friends, and check out the movie
page for where to send them.
Until next time --
June 12, 2006
Greetings everyone! It's been a little while since the last
update, and many things have happened in the world of Survivor
and reality-TV. First of all, it seems Canadians are slowly
infiltrating the ranks of American game shows (and in some
cases winning) such as JD Fortune last year in Rock
Star, as well as the recent season of The
Apprentice. Someone else pointed out the obvious fact
that Canadians have competed on Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy
for some time.
Of course the biggest news is Richard Hatch getting
4 years in prison for tax evasion. He asked the judge
to believe he was simply a bungling record-keeper. (Somehow
I think a guy who's cunning enough to win Survivor
is sharp enough to keep his taxes in order). A lesser known
story is Austin Carty being auctioned
off on ebay for a sum of $102.50. Surely a date with an
authentic Survivor is worth more?
Back in Canada, those of us itching to at least start up
our own version of Survivor, are instead
offered the sad incarnation known as Canada's
Next Top Model. Can't CBS open their arms and allow their
Northern brethren to apply? Some people believe CBS is bound
by US law to disqualify Canadians from competing on the grounds
of tax codes, non-disclosure agreements, or perhaps because
we're perceived as generally "nicer." To that I
say our amicable exteriors hide our bloodthirst for competition.
applications at this very moment for an upcoming season.
Why must they taunt us so? Why Mark? Why Jeff?
Until next time --
March 10, 2006
Well, it's been a while since the last update, and a lot
has happened in the interm. I became a little frustrated with
waiting around for CBS to open Survivor up to Canadians, so
I went and found a tropical island on my own.
I spent 2 months backpacking around Southeast-Asia and have
the experiences and the now-fading tan to show for it. (Note:
the above photo was taken early in the trip, hence the pale
skin...) Anyway, upon my return I noticed the Let Canadians
on Survivor petition was still drawing signatures, and I realized
the hope was still alive.
And now the current season is underway. Both final reports
I sent to CBS have yet to be returned, which leads me to believe
the idea is still under consideration. Either that, or the
executives are rubbing their hands together in malicious satisfaction.
It'll happen eventually. Canadians will compete on Survivor
and fans on both sides of the border will wonder why it didn't
December 19, 2005
Greetings All! I know I said I wouldn't do anymore updates
after the November 1 deadline, but recent events demand it.
As many of you know, I sent 3 copies of the Let Me On Survivor
Final Report (including the petition) out into the world.
Two copies went to CBS Studios
in Los Angeles. One copy went to Canwest
Global, the Canadian media conglomerate that carries the
US version of Survivor up here.
Anyway, today in the mail I received back the copy I'd sent
to Canwest. It appears the package was opened, but then promptly
put back in the mail with "RETURN TO SENDER" added
to the side. I suppose they weren't impressed with the final
report and the attached 3500+ signatures of both Canandian
and American fans who support this cause.
Does that mean the end is nigh? Not necessarily. I have yet
to receive a response from the studio that counts - CBS. Only
time will tell if they decide to mix up the game, and allow
contestants on both sides of the border.
November 1, 2005
The day has finally arrived. 11 months since I started the
campaign and the moments have gone by much too quickly. As
you can see, the Final Report can now be downloaded from my
site. Very shortly I will be sending a copy into CBS
to show them why a Canadian versus American matchup would
I personally want to thank all the fans who signed the petition,
and help spread the word about the website.
The road ahead isn't so clear. Will CBS in fact alter the
rules to allow Canadians on Survivor? Or will Mark Burnett
follow up on his desire to create an entirely Canadian version?
Only time will tell. I wanted to mention I will no longer
be actively involved in promoting the campaign. I figure I've
done all I could to make this happen and it is now in the
hands of others.
Make no mistake, the website and petition will stay
online and continue to collect signatures. There's
a good chance CBS will check it out from time to time as they
ponder their decision. Perhaps someday soon we will hear Jeff
Probst appeal to Canadians to send in their audition tapes.
And I could say to myself: "Finally, they decided to
let me on Survivor."
It's been fun.
November 1, 2005
October 24, 2005
It’s been 10 months since I launched this campaign
to get CBS to alter the application rules of Survivor. It
seems like only yesterday I sent the first email out to my
friends, and it wasn’t long before signatures of support
starting appearing on my petition. As I type this update,
the petition now has almost 3200 signatures
from like-minded fans who agree that a Canadian VS American
matchup is exactly what the series needs.
If you haven’t visited the site in an while, you may
have noticed the addition of several more Survivors to my
Approval list: Alicia Calaway, Colby Donaldson, Rob &
Amber Mariano, and Christa Hastie. Check out their comments
on the Alumni page, and visit their websites if you’re
wondering what they’ve been up to since the show. (Though
Rob & Amber have certainly been no strangers to reality
TV. Also, my parents mentioned they saw Colby as a ‘security
guard’ in the recent film Red Eye. “He was very
convincing,” said my dad).
Some of you may have also noticed the latest press
release accouncing my plans to seek a meeting with CBS
executives in Los Angeles. You may be wondering how that’s
going. Well to be honest, my emails to various American talk-shows
haven’t brought forth any takers (I was betting on Ellen
As an alternate tactic, I had a friend pose as my secretary
and call CBS studios to schedule an appointment. The receptionist
on the first call had no idea what my friend was talking about,
probably because I had given her the wrong number by accident.
The second call yielded better results. She was able to get
the contact info for the Survivor press agent, whom I promptly
emailed about setting up a meeting to change the application
rules. The agent replied, “Sorry, that policy is non-negotiable.”
+ Email your local radio stations and newspapers
telling them about the website. If you like, include the link
to my latest press
+ Email CBS Executives by using the CBS
feedback form here.
remember to be polite and rational, (no threats or foul language).
Make sure you mention why you want this cross-border matchup,
and why it would bring in fantastic ratings.
+ Email Viacom (corporate owners of CBS)
asking them to tell their executives in charge of Survivor
to meet up with me and hear the case for Canadians on Survivor.
Here’s their address firstname.lastname@example.org
The next (and final) update will be on November 1, 2005,
to let you know the Let Me On Survivor.com Final Report
is complete and available for download off my website. Thanks
again to everyone who has supported the campaign so far.
Until next time,
Oct 11, 2005
The campaign continues to heat up, in part due to a mention
on the Survivor
Strikes Back blog on the CBS website. (Thanks Scout!)
Likewise, the petition is now over 2900 signatures!
And I love the comments so keep'em coming.
for those who want to help out a little more I've
come up with the new feature: Send your photo to me
with the printed message "Let Me On Survivor!" and
I'll start posting them on a special page of my site. The
pics can be as normal or hilarious as you want. Be creative...but
remember, no nudity! (Unless you're doing a Richard Hatch
Sept 30, 2005
Because of mounting interest in the campaign, I've decided
to extend the petition deadline one month, until
Nov 1, 2005
Check out the media updates section to read my recent stories
then listen to my latest radio interview with 96X
in Edmonton. The petition now has over 2400 signatures
with no sign of slowing down. Also, it's been reported
that Mark Burnett is considering a Canadian version sometime
soon. Not quite an American Vs Canadian matchup, but still
Sept 5, 2005
Under a month left now before I send in the petition
on October 1, and interest continues to grow. The campaign
was recently mentioned on AOL.com
and another radio interview from an Ottawa radio station is
due out soon. Total signatures have now topped 1800, quickly
approaching the 2000 landmark. I plan on shooting one more
film to celebrate the actual sending in of the petition,
so keep an eye out for that. (I promise it will be good!)
In the meantime please continue to pass along the word to
whoever you think would be interested. And when the new season
starts feel free to comment on Ian's
Aug 11, 2005
Greetings everyone! I recently noticed a large surge in the
traffic visiting this site. To my delight, I discovered I
was mentioned in Entertainment Weekly's "Pop-Watch"
blog. I'm listed as the guy who is on a quest to "end
the Americans-only rule for Survivor contestants, so that
he can someday be stranded in a remote location and starve
on national television." Combined with a few other sources
that picked up the story, here's the latest media updates:
Hopefully this can kick-off some momentum as I approach the
October deadline for sending in the petition. Thanks to everyone
who has supported this campaign so far and please continue
to spread the word! Also if you get a chance, check out my
other website TravelBlogger.
July 14, 2005
BRAND NEW VIDEO!!
A little while ago we had ourselves a Survivor board game
night at my apartment. Yes, that's right, there's a Survivor
board game. I won it at my family Christmas party. Anyway
it was a great opportunity to test out my strategy before
the real thing...except I was the first voted out. This
video is a few of the voting confessionals.
June 20, 2005
Greetings everyone! I hope you like the new look of the website.
I decided after a period of relative inactivity that it was
time to put the effort into making this happen. I've decided
on a hard deadline for sending the petition into CBS, which
will be October 1, 2005. I've chosen this
date for two reasons:
(1) Survivor Guatemala will have started, and once again
Survivor will be the topic of water-cooler conversation.
(2) By sending in the petition mid-way through the season,
hopefully CBS will have time to consider getting Canadians
on by the next casting call, which will be for Survivor 13.
Other updates around the site include a weekly commentary
I'll be writing on each episode of the upcoming season. Ian's
Survivor Blog can be accessed from the menu link above. Feel
free to comment on my take of the episode. And if you can,
please continue to spread the word about this website!
May 17, 2005
Survivor: Palau is officially over. I must say, I enjoyed
this season much more than the last one. (No offense Chris).
I was pretty surprised over Ian's decision to jump off the
buoy and concede the immunity challenge to Tom, but I guess
I understand why he felt he had to do it. Still, there's no
way I would've jumped off the buoy after coming so far. The
game is one thing. Real life is another.
After Jeff Probst announced the next location at the reunion
show, I was waiting to hear those magic words "Hey Canada!
And this time you're invited to apply as well!" but alas,
those words never came. I've heard a few reasons why Mark
Burnett has so far denied Canadians the opportunity, from
"tax differences" to liability agreements. But I
gotta tell you, it's time to shake things up. Time to mix
up the game and open it to the US's lovable and progressive
Northern neighbours. Step aside mounties and maple syrup --
it's time for Canada to show'em how it's done.
April 9, 2005
Well, as you probably noticed, there hasn't been much to
report since the last update. I've been really busy with school
and trying to finish up this semester. Only two more exams
to go! Meanwhile Survivor: Palau has unfolded week by week,
and I gotta say, I'm enjoying this season much more than the
last one. It is a bit painful watching the one tribe get whittled
down to Stephanie...poor poor Bobby John.
Anyway, that is this season, and I'm more concerned about
trying to get myself and other Canadians on a future season.
I figure the best shot I have is trying to get the word out
to as many people as possible. Jody was kind enough to pass
along a link to Dr.Phil, who is having an upcoming show about
reality tv addicts. Now I wouldn't necessarily classify myself
as an addict...but appearing on Dr. Phil would be pretty funny.
As for the rest of the summer, I intend to step up my campaign
and keep the dream alive. After all...you never know.
Until next time,
Feb 25, 2005
I hope you’ve all had an enjoyable winter, as spring
is just around the corner. Myself, I have been busy with working
on my undergrad degree, deejaying around Vancouver, and of
course ... trying to get on Survivor. Fortunately, I have
plenty of announcements to make regarding my Let Me On Survivor
website, which some of you may have noticed already.
So in no particular order, I’m pleased to present:
LET ME ON SURVIVOR.COM – THE UPDATES
* Around the Vancouver area I was featured on The Fox radio
station’s website, under the section “Geek of
the Week.” I was also informed that they telephoned
CBS and asked them why Canadians aren’t allowed on
Survivor, though because I didn’t actually hear the
broadcast, I’m not sure what the answer was.
* Two Vancouver newspapers featured my story. Here’s
a blurb from The Westender: “Observer received an
e-mail this week from plucky Vancouver resident Ian MacKenzie,
a reader whose love of the CBS 'reality' series Survivor
truly knows no bounds - unlike the program's producers and
network, who know many.” The article in The Province
was a little more prominent, and even included a full colour
photograph of myself from my Fiji trip in 2001. An excerpt:
“In an untamed corner of the place they call Burnaby
Mountain, one man plots a strategy to overcome the impossible.”
* I was also lucky enough to be featured on the cover of
my university student newspaper, The Peak. “Although
Ian has prepared his audition tape and is collecting signatures
for his personal goal to get on Survivor, it’s not
just about him,” says the article. “It’s
about bringing some spice back into the game.” And
not only was I the feature article for that week, I was
also on the cover!
* A few weeks ago I came up with the crazy idea that I
would try to contact past Survivors and get them to endorse
my website. Well, it turns out it was just crazy enough
to work. Through the miracle of the internet (and the webpages
of ex-Survivors) I’ve been able to contact 5 of them
(Jerri Manthey, Ethan Zohn, Jenna Morasca, Mike Skupin,
and Keith Famie), and all have whole-heartedly given their
blessing. As Jerri says, “Put Ian on for God's sakes!
I've never seen anyone go to the trouble of setting up a
website BEFORE they get on the show!” Thanks to all
the Survivors for helping me out!
* Last weekend I had the good fortune of attending The
Outdoor Show at BC Place in downtown Vancouver. And who
might be the special guest? Rupert Boneham! He gave an entertaining
behind the scenes talk, and explained why he ended up wearing
a skirt in Survivor Pearl Islands. He stuck around after
the talk for autograph signing and pictures, which is how
I was able to get a great photograph of both of us. (Now
on the main page of my website).
* And if that’s not enough, my website also features
two brand-new videos. The first is an outtakes compilation
from my actual audition tape, (which is not on the site).
The second is a short clip of my American roadtrip last
summer, in which I play on the sand dunes of coastal Oregon.
It really has nothing to do with Survivor, but gosh darn
it, it’s a whole lot of fun to watch.
As I type this update, my petition has now reached 1191 signatures.
I still can’t believe it myself. It has only just been
over two months and the support I’ve received has been
much appreciated. What does the future hold? Will Canadians
ever be allowed to compete on Survivor? Will Richard Hatch
say how he ever thought he’d get away with tax evasion?
Will the Caramilk secret ever be revealed? Only time will
So enjoy Survivor: Palau, and keep the dream of a Canadian
Vs American Survivor alive. Thanks again for signing my petition!
Jan 3, 2005
Hope you all had an enjoyable holiday season! It's not that
time of year to reflect on our new year's resolutions, and
our ambitions over the next 365 days. For myself, there's
no better time to renew my resolve to get on an upcoming season
Already, my petition is approaching 400 signatures! I think
that's pretty good considering the website has only been online
for a few weeks. As well, I have been interviewed by a Winnipeg
radio station and an online news magazine situated near Vancouver.
Both interviews are available in my new and improved "Media
Updates" section (http://www.letmeonsurvivor.com/updates.htm),
which will feature any new developments as we get closer to
achieving the goal of a Canadian/American Survivor matchup.
Since CBS is auditioning for the 11 season following Survivor:
Palau, the earliest I'll be able to influence their decision
to allow Canadians will be Survivor 12. This means we have
until near the end of Survivor: Palau to present the petition
and the reasons why they should have the Canadian/American
So thanks again for signing my petition. It would also help
a lot if you could pass along the website link to everyone
else you can think of, and even to radio stations and magazines.
Gotta aim high, right? Maybe someday in the near future I'll
be telling this story on Oprah.
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