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‘The Activist’ undergoing changes after facing severe criticism

Credit: Unsplash

Last week, CBS revealed plans for a new reality show titled The Activist, scheduled to premiere next month. The concept was inspired by talent shows like X-Factor, where activists would compete for an opportunity to advocate before world leaders at the upcoming G20 summit. However, this approach of turning activism into a competition received strong criticism from real activists and campaigners, who deemed the idea insensitive. The backlash against CBS for The Activist was harsh, with critics calling it “tone-deaf.”

Following a week of controversy, CBS decided to reconsider its approach and make changes to the show. The turning point came when one of the celebrity judges associated with the show acknowledged their lack of expertise in assessing activist efforts. The show’s producer, international advocacy organization Global Citizen, admitted their mistake in a public statement.

“Global activism is built on collaboration and unity, not rivalry. We apologize to the activists, hosts, and the broader activist community for our misstep.”

“The intention behind The Activist was to showcase to a broad audience the dedication, hard work, and creativity that activists invest in changing the world, with hopes of inspiring others to follow suit,” Global Citizen stated jointly with CBS.

“However, it has become clear that the originally proposed show format detracts from the vital contributions these remarkable activists make in their communities every day. Driving global change is not a contest; it requires a united global effort.”

The show will now be transformed from a competitive reality series into a documentary focusing on the “persistent efforts of six activists and the influence they have while championing causes they deeply care about.”

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