#StillHere: An Online Experience

In case you were wondering what the Internet was made for, I now have the answer. Thanks to the Discovery Channel, Campfire, J.C. Hutchins, and the creative team behind the prequel experience that is known as #StillHere, I have had my mind blown by what they are doing to promote season two of The Colony, and just how well they are utilizing the online experience using social networking.

First, a bit of background. The Colony is a television show that is truly unique. It takes seven volunteers, plops them in a scenario that has to do with a catastrophic, global event, and we watch as they try and survive without the comforts of every day life around them. Think of it as the apocalyptic version of Survivor. Sound cool? Trust me, it is.

To promote season two of the show which starts on July 27th, Campfire conceived of a way that Discovery could use the Internet to create an online experience like no other. They enlisted the help of some brilliant creative types, one being J.C. Hutchins, an author and creator who acted as Lead Writer for the project, and had a major role in designing the world of #StillHere.

Using Facebook Connect, you log on to JoinTheColony.com and suddenly find yourself looking at your Facebook profile, only it isn’t. I mean, you have all your friends and family on there, but somethings…different. They’re leaving messages on your wall about a “Nuclear Flu” that is striking all over the world. There’s videos, articles, polls, pictures, and before you know it you’re immersed in the world of #StillHere, and wondering if it’s real. Your brain tells you it isn’t, but seeing all those people, people that you know, react to this global pandemic is frightening. I lost myself for a good hour in it when I first logged on, and when I was done I had to go check my regular Facebook profile just to be sure.

What’s great about the #StillHere experience is that it’s customized for you. It involves your friends, places you know, and drops you into a narrative that is all too real. Is it perfect? No. I found myself chuckling at little details like my friends in Canada calling the province of Ontario a state. Those things are quickly overlooked though, when you start getting into the bigger picture of #StillHere and just what it’s all about.

Like I said before, this is the perfect example of what the Internet was made for. Combining today’s most popular social networking site with an experience that is exclusive to the user, Campfire, Discovery, and the creative team behind #StillHere have done an amazing job at promoting something that is offline, and can only make people want to tune in to their televisions on July 27th, when the second season of The Colony premieres on Discovery at 10:00 p.m.