FOX Produces Reality Web Cam Based Social Experiment UTOPIA

FIRST 30 DAY REVIEW

WATCH LIVE & View current residents: http://totalreality.tv/utopia.php

or http://www.utopiatv.com and get 4hr rewinds on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8eZTehtrNg

& view the CrewTopia Month 1 video: http://www.utopiatv.com/news/detail/1246/the-ultimate-utopia-video-recap-1

FOLLOW with chat via: https://tweetdeck.twitter.com/#UTOPIA

Utopia

Written by Tim Frentz (Author “Life’s Little Secrets) – The following first 30 day review comes from an experienced survivalist, spiritual guide and eco community consultant who has participated in multiple Utopian communities. Tim is an applicant in consideration and will be visiting Utopia in October until hopefully he is invited to stay as a community member.

Read more about the Helping Hands movement founder,  Tim Frentz, at: http://netvibes.com/HelpinHandsNet

THE REASON FOR THIS BLOG POST is to help promote and educate community living by keeping the viewership as high as possible during the life of the UTOPIA project. At a time where population growth is out of control and the USA civilization is on course to self destruction without a paradigm shift, a return to rural living using sustainable practices is crucial.

Tim Frentz leads a movement called the Helping Hands Network, which brings all these concepts together among those whom want to improve their lives and any others looking for guidance. In this blog, Frentz adds commentary and suggestions of how to improve on the current cast members actions.

We should all thank FOX Studios for investing over $50 million dollars into a project which has the potential to improve the flaws in the current status of United States culture.

The first few weeks of the project showed just how vast modern day personalities and beliefs really are. The producers have purposely chosen a mixed group in attempt to show a real scenario where drama and conflict would exist.

A perfect cast of peace loving know-it-all’s would make a great show and be very educational to the viewers with the rapid level of community bonding, however, the lessons to be learned by the chaos and conflict of the current cast has a vital role to play as well.

UtopiaScreenShot

1st 30 DAY REVIEW

DAY 1 – 8/29/2014

Not allowing the purchase of finished goods and limiting Pioneers to raw materials and bulk food stock would be much more interesting and educational to the viewers. It would really help the ratings! Not to mention, the participation in capitalism with an outside entity creates conflict over time which tugs at the Utopian dream.

We have already seen extremely heated debates with physical force directed at the destruction of the canned food surplus by Red and Dave because the options are left open. The more options they have, the more disagreement there will be! There has also been violence caused by the use of alcohol.

The attempt to obtain tools and needed items by trade with neighbors should be made before paying retail prices for new items!!! 

The idea of exploring and gathering in a Armageddon scenario is much more appealing. Starting the community with enough food rations for 30 days for 15 people should prevent purchase of additional food but this cast shows an accurate census of how the current US culture thinks. 2/15 of the cast makes attempts to create solutions out of resources available before running to spend money at a store. About the same % of Americans have been conditioned by marketing to think the same way. Our Elders are sickened by the younger generations ignorance and creation of waste.

TOPICS ADDRESSED IN MONTH 1:

(Topics may have been discussed on web cam feeds but not on final edit Episodes on TV)

Rules

Water Conservation (rain barrel collection not discussed)

Natural Resource access (wind and water energy not discussed)

Food Growth (permaculture basics were not discussed in regards to water flow and garden design until Bella started reading about it in week 2) Plants are to be started in portable pots in a green house setting. Make a starter green house and move mature plants into permanent spots with raised compost nutrient rich soil. Mediterranean climate in the canyons is going to wipe out a majority of the sprouts!

Food Collection (fishing & hunting conservation is not discussed. Nut and fruit tree’s are mentioned on web cams but not in the Utopians minds enough. There is very little talk about foraging.)

Food Nutrition (Grocery shopping and $25-50 delivery fee’s cause the biggest arguments in early weeks. Calling a friend to place BARTER ads for neighbors produce on CRAIGSLIST is an obvious choice not being considered so far. Hosting farmers market booth’s during the Utopian Experience days should be a no-brainer.)

Shelter (weather and climate not discussed in episode one)

Microwave Radiation (research proven medical studies and relation to increased % of population infected with related cancers. Bella does warn them eventually.)

Time Management / Roles

Democracy (Rotating government and leadership at least gives them better understanding of what does or does not work.)

Sleeping areas and personal space (Production refused Bella the right to sleep outside due to a Mountain Lion being tracked in the area. Hopefully producers will agree to allow UTOPIANs to sign a release waiver in order to allow similar future freedoms.)

Finances

(Bartering is addressed on web cam chat when Bri shops for a Rooster but it is not in the front of Utopians minds as much as it should be when talking about shopping mostly because THEY DON’T CARE. Most of the Pioneers will all be gone by the time the money run’s out anyway.)

$197 spent for hoses, spray attachment, sprinkler & a circular skill saw!!! Natural irrigation via wood channelling and proper sponge soil creation would void the need for hoses and sprinklers.

$149 on 2 stage water filter to filter fluoride that may or may not exist in their water. (Public water could be used for any non drinking and cooking water. A natural water filter can be made on site to purify rain water collection in addition to boiling and treating with UV light for all drinking needs without spending $149 in normal conditions. Unfortunately, Clarita is in a drought and Utopia did not start with a water tower full of fresh water so an inline filter on the plumbing is a good investment AFTER they have earned spending money.)

$663 to run gas from main into the Barn (Due to the need for a certified material installer. Again NO RULES in Utopia so no building codes should be enforced but it is understandable that production is under a microscope by local authorities to follow their rules.)

DAY 13: AND THEY FINALLY HAVE their first formal organized meeting!!! FAIL…

Day 19: AND they finally have an over priced computer that could have been delivered via Craigslist for $150 on night 1.

Animal Use

Cat talks (Cats control vermin population but Utopians consider it as an indoor pet with a needed litter box instead of keeping it outdoors)

Cow diet (Need fed based on forage/meadow grazing with very little dry hay/alfalfa. They aerate and fertilize the soil while leaving waste nutrients for the chickens to follow in behind for maximum Crop Growth) FOX brings in a VET before improper care leads to a sick cow.

Cows are voted off UTOPIA on day 18. UTOPIAN cast did not include a competent cow care giver so they are in talks about how to maximize their value. Cash sale pre or post birth, barter for goats plus cash, slaughter for food. Somehow, the Utopians are talked into keeping the cow’s even though they can not afford to feed them. Viewers cry abuse, but in reality cows can take care of themselves just fine and the Utopians do keep spending money on their needs BUT it is not a wise financial decision. Viewers please stop screaming cow abuse.

Oat Barley v. Alfalfa v. other options

Chickens (Mobile tractor coop for insect control and garden compost nutrient production is in progress. However, Bri is too distracted by her toys to educate Bella on proper chicken etiquette. Chickens need moved one at a time to grazing if done forcefully. They will return willingly to their coop at night and do not need forced. Moving chickens without a mobile coop cost the residents a lot of eggs in the first weeks.) They still need a net above the grazing area to stop owls and hawks. Josh mentions this on day 15.

http://www.geofflawton.com/fe/59960-feed-chickens-without-grain

Day 13: Bella fails to educate on Chicken Cow relations. Cows completely digest organic matter and chickens feed off the remaining nutrients. Hex blows up at Bella with miss information that there feed taints eggs for 10 days (according to RED). The group trusts advice from one local farm store merchant and a neighbor (Lefty) without being open to higher knowledge in global Permaculture. The group needs a permaculture expert like me ASAP so they are not so easily led in the wrong direction.

Horse ($2000 purchase vs. leasing options for pure recreational purpose)

Goats v. Pigs (trade for a cow severally limits methane production, compost and hog feed resources)

COMPOSTING FAIL!!! (Free graze the cattle and 90% of your compost problem is solved. Barn at night only and mix compost into pasture soil daily. There is enough meadow for one cow if they are fenced in and given one side of the pond all to themselves.)

Skilled Trades (Utopian handymen rely on outside hired help instead of trusting their own abilities and creating parts out of raw materials)

Trash / Waste Management (Disease control)

DAY 17:

Group decides to have one dictator (final decision maker) with 3 day limits. Random pick the order. Hex is now in control then Bri. Nikki may never get her chance. Humorous that everyone in the groups acts like they are immune when the reality is that they could be evicted at any time.

DAY 18:

Don’t dump out raw milk because a fly is in it. Save it for me because my immune system is plenty capable of handling it…and so is yours!

FINALLY, 18 days late on clipping the chickens wings!!! Cow’s are on the way out. UTOPIA is about to lose it’s primary source of SOIL COMPOSTING. Unsure how much top soil is around but the driveways and main meadows show very unhealthy rocky soil which need’s the cow manure to rebuild it’s nutrient base for future crop growth.

$75 is not very much money to place plastic sandwich bags with water around the property to control the fly problem according to AARON.  (omg…really?) Again, he is making a financial decision without the group. I cover natural pest control’s in my book “Life’s Little Secrets” here: http://wp.me/p13eVj-y9

$125 to the Vet $150 for groceries ($50 delivery fee EVERY WEEK) $51 for 17 plates instead of asking a neighbor for some free ones!

$475 for a computer you could get for practically free on Craigslist. (I trade and repair outdated laptops and I get them for the cost of shipping all the time)

DAY 19: Sept 16, TUE

UTOPIA Experience is conceptualized in the meeting (All UTopians skills on display in REN-Fest WanderLust Style)

UtopiaExperience

Producers make the major mistake of NOT opening voting on primetime. No mention of texting or calling in to vote the next eviction. They choose to go with the internal UTOPIAN voting only apparently this round which will not help increase their ratings. YOU must make the viewers feel like we are part of the show with as much interaction as possible!!!    😦

DAY 20:

A dead tree is shown behind the barn but no one has addressed chopping and stacking wood for heat furnaces using the oil barrels. Water catching systems are still not discussed and rain is in the forecast. Compost straw is being hauled off site instead of building green house soils.

They need a Craigslist errand person outside the complex to go around and barter the things they have to offer for the items they need but no one has addressed it yet. I could of had a great laptop for only $75 worth of trade, at the gate within 12 hours of being approved if I was a current Utopian and allowed to call my local network team.

*IF each UTOPIAN’s profile was connected to a live cam channel that followed them around specifically as much as possible, that would increase paid subscribers astronomically.

RED tells Amanda some basics on raising cows and chickens with their basic diet needs. He still has some to learn about Permaculture principals and composting for gardening but he and Bella have the most experience. Red thinks you rake and dry manure but for soil building compost you pile, mix, cover and turn it every few days for 2 weeks and then spread it out. Amanda continues asking Red for his review of others participation.

Josh continues thinking he needs to call a plummer or other trade specialists instead of doing things like UNCLOGGING THE SINK by himself.

The group don’t know toothpaste is simple baking soda. $1 worth lasts 1 person a full year!!!

The $149+20 delivery water filter is returned now that money is short. They can make one themselves for those that it matters the most too. A basic pitcher filter is only $15 and will remove ABOUT 50% of the Clarita public water Chlorine and fluoride particles. But it will always taste like chlorine. THEY need rain or permission to forage a nearby stream so they can get some fresh water.

Day 21

Ruler Change Meeting. Bri passes her turn to Bella. Bella declares ALL woman combined dictatorship.

Day 22 Friday 9/19

Computer arrives. How will they handle scheduling for use of it. How much negativity is this going to cause? Now that it is obvious to all that they are about out of money and food, tempers get out of control.

Day 23 SAT

5+ show up for boot camp at 9-10:30am

30 some show up for the Utopia Experience Fest

4 stay for Yoga

“The Experience” shows that it is possible to sustain the cost of monthly utility expenses with income from a monthly Ren Fest type of business. If the Utopians can come together to live off grid without water and power bills, they would not have to base their Utopia so strongly on making money. Unfortunately the current cast is mostly made up of city slicker who don’t imagine the possibilities of living without money.

 Day 24 SUN

New Utopian Ernie, 39 from Oceanside arrives. Brings more experience with plumbing. Voting on eviction did not happen first and viewers are confused.

Day 25 MON

My warnings about the garden being damaged by wildlife/nature by not starting in Greenhouses (controlled environments) went un-addressed and this day they discover Deer eating everything.

Budget meeting – 20% taxes ; 30% growth & savings ; 40% bills ; 10% personal spending ;

Teams are finally formed (House, garden, barn)

Rumored that 2 new come in Tonight or Tuesday and then NEXT Tuesday, they finally vote out someone. Looks like one forced (voted) eviction per month may be the trend, in addition to those who leave voluntarily.

RED goes financially independent and sets his own timebomb for being voted off.

$1000/month for COW FEED!!! Not including shots etc. The cow is not able to sustain itself off the lands meadow and it needs to be traded for a goat. They also need to contract a deal for free milk/cheese as part of the trade. They can not afford cattle.

House budget. HOT Water $350-700 heater plus $300 shower & tub. Tankless estimate according to Josh is $1200 BUT production must not be letting them order off eBay and Amazon because you can get them for $100-200. SOLAR IS BEST AND FREE.

http://tinyurl.com/o5x6kx3

IDIOT Josh is clueless on Solar water heating and ridicules Nikki.

Day 26 TUE

They show enough 2×6 and 2x10s to build the greenhouse today and “Contractor” Josh has left them uncovered in the weather to warp. His IQ is shrinking every day.

Leadership meetings lead to voting project managers. Bella refuses to participate and does not oppose Hex being put in place as garden manager. No one opposes Bris for Barn and no one opposes Josh for construction. Kristin goes unopposed as internet project leader with Chris and Nikki as helpers and replacement web team.

Day 27 WED

new government with Mike (the joker). Bella is talked into staying by production likely because they don’t want to have to replace more people then they can avoid. (travel costs for new Utopians adds up)

Day 28 TR 9/25
voting is finally opened to viewers and viewers get to pick one of 3 Utopians to be placed on the shortlist by SAT morning 9/27. A few days later, the Utopians will vote from the selected 3.

*The process should be held every 2 weeks. There is an abundance of current Utopians who are lazy and not making an effort to educate and improve for the benefit of the community and it would be more enjoyable to watch as well as more educational if the slackers were removed quicker in a bi-weekly process.

Calf born and several of the cast start talking about selling them before they even care for the calf.

Day 29

Calf watch day mostly

Day 30 SAT 9/27

Bri selected as internet and Utopian choice for eviction. Aaron and Red are 2nd and 3rd finalists for the first eviction vote.

DAYS OF IMPROVMENT

Day 33 TUE 9/30

Green Houses and HydroPonics are again addressed and may be brought up for group vote soon.

RED tells everyone he is ready to leave and Bri is saved. She is guaranteed to be out next unless someone else walks out before then. Really hope a bi-weekly eviction process is put in place to keep the attention of live stream viewers.

TELEVISED EPISODEs REVIEW

#1 – the editors fail to introduce the key concepts to survival like rules on burning wood and foraging outside boundary lines to satisfy dietary needs. Electricity and plumbing is mentioned but they do not cover enough detail.

#2 – again electricity is filmed but no explanation of why a trench needs to be dug and where the cable wire is coming from. Why are the Pioneers not trading for goods and foraging for food. Tell the viewers what is hidden around the compound to increase the suspense. Will the Utopians figure out what resources are right under their noses? Is the water from a well or is it tainted public flouride & chlorine? Is the pond connected to a natural spring or is man made? Will there use of it for irrigation deplete their fresh water supply?  Stay tuned…..

#3 – there is a big buzz about the episode 2 ratings being low. Will this experiment survive more than 7+ episodes (>30) some days?) If the producers could get even one celebrity to accept the challenge of living in this Utopian scenario for a full 7 days, it would grab the attention of more viewers. The projects start time is perfect with the arrival of fall and more people retreating indoors from cooler weather. If they could even get a couple people of interest to take a 24 hour challenge every few weeks, this project will have the ratings it deserves.

#4 – There still is not enough focus on the replacement and eviction process. Viewers comments on social media agree that the members who do not show serious efforts to learn rural living basics and improve their flaws need replaced every 2 weeks. If more qualified Utopians are not allowed into the experiment at a bi-weekly rate, the project will not achieve UTOPIA within the 12 month goal because too many of the current problem causing Utopians will still remain. There are plenty of better applicants (like Tim) waiting to get their call!

MEET THE PAST CAST:

missing Pioneer #16 Andrea Cox – Violated Mobile Phone and Communication policies before Day 1 – http://www.ebuzznew.com/utopia-reality-show-contestant-booted-before-filming-begins

Pioneer Dave: 32 NY Big City Nomad. Trying to recondition from a past in crime & prison rehabilitation. Full of love but mentally unstable. Emotional challenges come from being raised without loving parents and other absence of healthy role models in his youth.

Pioneer Jonathan: 44 TN Pastor.  Brings a strong christian religious presence but accepts others spirituality. Lists enemies as non believers which needs deeper definition. Brings peace and calm to the chaos. Great at avoiding confrontation to minimize the feeding of chaotic fires.

Week 2 Replacement Rhonda: 48 Politically driven. Offensive minded. Out spoken. Willing to work hard but has trouble taking advice. Voted out mostly due to her strong personality but apparently a rule was made that the pioneers were immune from being cast out this week and ONE of the two new-comers had to be voted out after only 5 days. Several of the pioneer 14 have less to contribute to the health of the community.

Week 4 Pioneer RED: Volunteers to leave to get home to family and his commitment to the Blue Grass Boys on the Discovery Channel . An actor with previous engagements and opportunities on TV should have never been selected in the first place for the Utopia project. He occupied nearly 5 weeks of opportunity others like me would have used more productively for the benefit of the project and viewers wanting to learn how CoHo living really works.

What Have I learned so far from these early Utopians?

there is a Documentary called Serious Disclosure from Bella

Without internet access to research and verify facts, misinformation is leading the society a muck due to their in-experience in many basic survival skills. (15 days of par treatment and under use of animals for 1 example. The land is also only being utilized at around 60% efficiency.)

EASTER ISLAND – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_Island  Day 15 (one of the first spiritual enlightening discussions lasted only a few minutes between Nikki and Bella)

<br><br>

SUMMARY

It is early, but so far barely 3 or so UTOPIANs have shown the ability to survive a full year in this scenario without outside reliance for food and resources. Very few show the ability to live among the others peacefully. So far, many of the UTOPIANs spend their free time sitting around arguing instead of planning and doing physical chores to improve the health of the community. Apparently there is a restraint by the producers that is preventing them from gathering food surrounding them freely.

It is unfortunate that there are indeed rules in UTOPIA. The California regulations on fire codes and building permits and inspections have been discussed as reasoning for setbacks and inability to enjoy bonfires etc. 

Why was (RED – from the Blue Grass Boys on Discovery Channel) chosen? There should be a restriction against selecting an actor. DeDecker has modeling experience on TV’s Skin Wars but at least she’s not a regular actor on the show. https://twitter.com/DedekerWinston/status/496076641458999296

HH Logo 1

WHAT WOULD I DO DIFFERENTLY:

If I was there already, I would have proposals for several improvements brought to the groups attention including;

– an educational hour with rotating teachers and topics related to improving the health of the community. (I would hold a short TED talk time during the Farmers Market/Utopia Experience to bring a new attraction to the group and I would also add it to the dating auction portion of the website for income during the week)

– more structured planning and summary meetings on Mondays & Fridays.

– I would offer to build & run a greenhouse and nursery business to generate revenue (Revenue is their #1 priority after survival. They wasted most of their start up capital like children would but were saved by helpful neighbors who paid to attend a weekend festival event for a couple weeks to build their savings back up.)

– make benches and other wood creations to sell (Carvings etc.)

– a water wheel for butter churning and power (if the source is from a stream but it appears to be on an electric pump which limits the options)

– crop watering around the pond swell.

– proper Permaculture for water conservation, food production, animal grazing and naturally filtered drinking water.

– I would teach and learn new yoga practices with Nikki (and flirt a little I’m sure)

– I would also learn and teach new fitness workouts with Aaron and get some rec time like soccer or Frisbee with him to keep encouraging the others to stay more active.

– I would bring my harmonica to the band

– I would help organize all the groups skills together in one unified event day to raise revenue. Invite local farmers to gather and host a farmers market. (We do Community teaching and Ag days and group lunch on Saturday’s at most CoHousing Eco Village Communities)  *Day 19 they finally come up with a similar idea with a RenFest twist. *Day 27 Josh finally points out the idea of hosting a farmers market.

It causes me pain to see enlightened and self educated pioneers being shun by their tribe. Bella struggles with communication skills and I could help her ease her troubles in many ways. I know Nikki would have welcomed my Reiki and partner yoga efforts during her bodies painful dietary times. My training in meditation will help heal such pains quicker through hypnotic practices. Aaron would appreciate my participation in sporting games, recreation, edible plants, and additions to his workout routines.

Everyone would enjoy my 37 years of adventure stories around the campfires and my experiences with problem solving in similar situations that they are currently experiencing. I also have a built successful money making ventures based on virtual business plan concepts which is a primary current struggle for them to generate income.

EverythingSymbol

WHAT WOULD Frentz’s PROFILE SAY?

Name: Tim (Yogi Gardener)

Age: 37

Occupation: Helping Hand

Vitals: single

Habitat of Origin: Wandering Nomad Yogi

Detailed Occupation: Multi Business owner, board member and Charity Founder, yogi, pro dart player

Skillset: Fitness, Survivalist, Handyman, Farmer/Permaculturalist, Tech guru, teacher, life coach, cuddler

Sign: Leo

Expressed in Emojis: YinYang, Sri Yantra, CoExist

Most Likely to: Connect with Enlightened Utopians

Natural Enemies: Violence, disrespect

T’s Utopia: Colony of Ants like my Wilson/Lambrecht elders in Cather’s “My Antonia”

WHAT WOULD BE IN TIM’s BOX?

Trail Mix and wild rice

SEEDS

Lemon (if no lemon tree’s)

Tea

Water testing kit

UV Light for water purifying

YOGA Bible (notes) for Nikki

Solar Charger, black shower bag

White head wrap, Black head wrap, stocking hat

Work gloves

Small Tarp (white for marker board)

Notebook

Bible (my current book manuscript in progress)

Baking Soda

Sun Block / oil

Leatherman and Multi function swiss knife

Stripped screw remover

Medical & duct tape

dry erase markers (white tarp for marker board)

a few more tools not on site

darts to entertain the group

bug net & hammock

bag of dried fruits

small soccer ball / hacky sack

tin/alum foil

Baking Soda Deodorant

induction burner (uses very little electricity vs. all the expensive natural gas they are burning instead of creating with the cow manure)

37 years of knowledge

EVICTIONS

For the first eviction round, the rule was that one of the new residents must be voted out and all the original 14 are safely immune. We are told there is no rules but the original Utopian 14 do not even consider voting out their weakest links among themselves before considering casting out one of the new-comers who were only with them 5 days.  It’s impossible to fully know a member’s potential in only 5 days and be forced to vote between 2 of them.

Will the same “rule” be in effect at the end of week 4???? The Utopians got to vote the top 3 possible evictions. The viewers got to decide the tie breaker. Viewers voted for Bri but the cast voted for RED because he wanted to leave.

The present cast of UTOPIANs would be very challenging to co-exist with but I’m looking forward to the chance when I get called up.

Out of 317 million in the US, only a few thousand have signed up for UTOPIA and less than 40 or so will make it through the selection process. Out of that 40, only a few of us have a moderate level of experience living in sustainable Co-Housing type Utopian communities.

CONTACT the Cast/staff:

http://www.utopiatv.com/contact-participants

Utopians@UtopiaBusiness.com

@UtopianPioneer

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Utopia-Pioneers/620879118032637

http://theutopiapioneers.com/password

https://twitter.com/pirarobizarro

https://twitter.com/hippykid/

https://twitter.com/utopiatvusa

http://loveablescoundrels.com/

APPLY for a visitation passport:
http://www.utopiatv.com/news/detail/619/namaste-utopia-is-open-for-business

MORE INFO:
http://variety.com/2014/tv/news/fox-gambles-on-big-bold-and-expensive-vision-of-utopia-1201288541/

*Currently Frentz is doing a series of book promotion events with award winning Artist/Publisher HART FISHER around SoCal and any further review comments on the Utopia project will be limited to availability. For more info on Frentz’s current project while awaiting his invitation into UTOPIA please follow AmericanHorrors.com social media and the Helping Hands Network social media.

AmericanHorrorsBillHartFisher

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