This is just wacky enough to be a hit, but it just sounds too nerdy and since somebody at HP thought it was really cutting edge neato, I'm thinking: Another good idea gone bad.
It's called "Meet and Delete" and it premiers May 10 on mtvU Uber on www.mtvU.com, the broadband channel of mtvU, MTV's network that is broadcast to 750 college campuses in dining areas, fitness centers, student lounges, dorm rooms and other places where watching TV is not the most important thing going on.
From the press release, the dating show offers:
a new twist on getting to know someone, be it for dating, identifying your next roommate or picking a new band member. In the pilot episode, Amanda Alpert of the University of South Carolina Columbia is given unlimited access to the computers of three potential dates she's never met. With the opportunity to explore the deepest reaches of the guys' hard drives, from a remote location and with nothing else to go on, she checks their e-mail, music playlists, pictures, recently visited websites, video files, IMs with their friends, etc. The guys watch in horror as she goes deeper and deeper into their digital persona, finding info and files they never planned to share with anyone.
There are some interesting things here.
1) MTV has big plans for this show. It will be appear on every platform its has, including its big screen in Times Square. Something (other than Hewlett-Packard) tells them it's going to be a big thing.
2) It's sponsored by Hewlett-Packard as part of a mega two-year ad push involving "million of dollars" (see BusinessWeek) and HP is putting a lot of its promotional efforts in the product. HP supposedly brought the idea "Meet or Delete" to MTV. HP cool? ... news to me.
3) The central given of the series is that college students, an "early adopter" population, already live their lives online. Maybe. The PR hype that the PC is the "emotional hard drive" of MTVs' global audience sounds like babble-babble and it remains to be seen if browsing someone else's hard drive is actually interesting as TV,
After the launch on May 10, there will be a show Web site at www.meetordelete.com
What's next: flash drive dating?