April 27, 2012

Don't Mess with Milspouses


As a blogger, I've become accustomed to getting emails from all sorts of people. There are lots of offers for giveaways- some wonderful, some fairly odd, and some I delete while blushing. But I received an email a week ago that was unlike anything I'd found in my inbox before.

A CBS casting associate said that she had found my blog. Part of her email read,
"Our show is entitled "_____"  {I refuse to link to the site} and it is a series that chronicles three different woman as they search for love. I assure you I would not be reaching out if I thought this show would in any way trivialize or exploit anyone's situation, but rather, we are interested in featuring the journey of a widow in the hopes of inspiring women who also find themselves in a similar position. I have had the pleasure of seeing the first season of the original show (from Israel) and I can say with much confidence that this show is unlike anything a US audience has seen. It does not follow the conventions we are used to seeing in a "reality" show.I understand that this is presumptuous, and I assure you I mean no disrespect, but I did want to reach out to inquire if you may be interested in learning more about the show and passing along our casting notice to your fellow widow community."
From speaking with other military spouses, I knew that (unfortunately) this was a legitimate email. Although I wrote her back and suggested she do her research better (as nearly any page on this blog with show that I am not a widow), I found the email offensive, seemingly targeting military widows, and completely void of taste.

Since that time, I've seen that other ladies have gotten similar emails, including military widows, and that they have been contacted several times (i.e., harassed, in my opinion). I'm not quite sure what CBS is thinking, or if they realize what they are getting themselves into, but tonight I became so furious about the situation that I wrote another email to the casting agent.
Hi Karla,
I belong to a huge group of military spouse bloggers, some of whom are widows. (I assume you're targeting military widows from the amount of emails that have been going around.) I understand that you have a job to do, but I ask that you stop sending all the emails. You obviously don't have the sympathy and tact to understand that something as outrageous as a widow's dating show is highly offensive on so many levels. I cannot imagine one of my widow friends having to deal with one of these emails, and I'm being told they have been sent more than one. We're a tight-knit group of bloggers, and when one of us hurts, we all hurt. Please look for stories elsewhere if it's truly a show that needs to be done (I think not), but stop this outrageous harassment of military widows in particular, or I will be forced to bring this to the attention of the media.
Sincerely,
Erika
P.S. You mentioned my blog didn't give you any clue as to my relationship. My blog gave plenty of information as to my marital status- see the front page, about me, or just about any blog post. Also, most of the ladies you have been writing are already in a dating relationship and have no desire to splash their struggles and triumphs in a silly TV show.

Don't mess with these girls- my girls. This is just too personal for me to ignore.

Because they don't have a problem writing me and so many other military spouses, I thought they might like to receive some email back. 

So, if you'd like, email the Magical Elves casting at 

datingshowcasting3@gmail.com OR 

cesarzjster@gmail.com


or

give them a call a323-460-4030 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            323-460-4030      end_of_the_skype_highlighting Ext. 699 
or           323-460-4030 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            323-460-4030      end_of_the_skype_highlighting       Ext. 706 


You may also contact CBS and Chris Columbus (producer)  directly:  

CBS Headquarters

51 W. 52nd Street

New York, NY 10019-6188
1-212-975-4321 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            1-212-975-4321      end_of_the_skype_highlighting



Let them know what you think about their show, their incessant emails to widows and military spouses. 

I'm not usually a call-to-action type of girl, but I'm fed up.


P.S. Taylor from Our Military Home has a great post up with a sample letter to email, as well as a sample tweet with hashtag to send to everyone!

21 kind comments from you:

Lou said...

this post is perfectly written. I have been cheering you on since i saw you emailed them back on the mil blog fb page. I will be sharing this post with everyone i know. As well as emailing them... i agree with you completley. I wish they would stop harassing us and let every one heal in a healthy way.

liberal army wife said...

Oh... I hope we FLOOD their site, the phones start ringing off the hook. Because these people need to stop. they need to SHUT UP.

Optimistic Liz said...

GO YOU GIRL!! I cant imagine one of my widow friends getting one of these emails either! So disrespectful!! I plan on emailing them too!!

Chantal said...

I love this! Good job!

Allison said...

Way to take a stand! That is so terrible how they are exploiting people like this. I hope they come to their senses!

The New Normal said...

This is such a tight-knit community, what affects one affects so many of us. They state that they are not wanting to trivialize anyone's situation and that they mean no disrespect, yet they don't take the time to check their facts as to who they are contacting and their actual life situation. Sad...

Mel said...

Good job! Glad to see you stand up for the whole group. I find the concept degrading and silly and at there very least, they should know exactly who they're speaking to when they send an email.

Fran said...

Already spreading the word around, the word disrespect doesn't even being to cover it.

beka said...

that's so disturbing and disrespectful.
i can't believe it even exists. ugh. :\

Snarky Navy Wife said...

What the what?!

Good response. I'm so sick of milfams being exploited by the media and entertainment industries.

Allie said...

Perfect. Thank you for standing up for the community. That's just exploiting people who are hurting for ratings. Terrible.

Nicole said...

Ohhhh girl, I haven't gotten one of these emails, and if I had, you had BETTER believe I'd have made them sorry. I'll share this on Facebook, Tweet it, and write them myself, as well. Thank you for being pissed off for a very good reason!

Sailor's Valentine said...

That's completely awful!I will be sure to tweet it, share it on my FB, as well as sending a email to these producers myself. With your permission I would like to post a blog about this and will link back to your entry here. This is just wrong.

Nicole Marie said...

Wow! Good on you girl. I can't even imagine a widow getting this email.

Sue said...

I wish I could say I can't believe they would do this but unfortunately I can. I cannot stand reality tv in the first place but this is just horrid.

Dilan Dilir said...

this is awsome!

Amanda said...

I got the email and deleted it as I do so many other crappy pitches I get. PR just doesn't read. What I can't believe is that they're repeatedly harassing people who have told them, "no." People need to learn that no means no, not maybe.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I received this email and figured it was spam but, after some research this morning, realized it is legitimate. I am not a military widow, but I AM a widow. They found me on Legacy.com - a young widows website. I was feeling pretty uncomfortable with the steps they have been taking to get me to sign something immediately. I'm supposed to have a Skype interview today but plan to cancel. I had a feeling there was something "not right" about the vagueness. I was amazed how they were able to track down my cell phone number and work website all from a screen name on a blog... Thank you for posting this! I almost fell for it... but this is the bottom of the barrel to take advantage of young widows - dating is full of users and scammers, we don't need the whole country giving us putty and CBS making millions off of our tragedy. I'm disgusted.

Anonymous said...

http://www.meandmysoldierman.com/2012/04/military-widow-casting-call.html

Erin said...

Erika, thank you for bringing this to light and encouraging a call to action. I have received multiple emails and messages through my Blog and Twitter, and they've even tracked down my phone number and left two messages. They say it's non-exploitative, but I don't get a good feeling about it. Our tragedy might make good TV to them, but it's our lives! Shaking my head at them....

Alyssa Garza said...

Hello to you from another Mil spouse blogger! Im a daughter of a widow, we just hit the 21 year mark of "daddy Arts" death in April. I myself am very furious that someone who has NO KNOWLEDGE or EDUCATION on this life matter. I have seen my mother for years and years still grieve and hold on to the last few memories she has of her husband. Im embaressed for the women in all honesty and Im embaressed of CBS for harrasing these women. Im proud you have taken a stand for those who have recieved emails and for those who are unaware of what is going on! I to have friends that are widows, and that are doing very well with everyday life. I don't know why these people think its 'okay" to pry into something that is so heartbreaking and so personal. I will be directing my nights attention to writing these uneducated show casters! Shame on them for jumping to conclusions of you being a widow. Like said if they would of informed them selves about your blog they would of known better to write such a stupid email! Blessing to you and your family!

From, a Mil spouse sister!

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