Ring, the Amazon-owned home security company that’ll sell you a camera just as swiftly as it will give law enforcement access to that same camera’s footage without a warrant, is producing a television show that sounds an invitation to participate in the surveillance state. You know, as a fun family activity.
Deadline reports that Wanda Sykes has signed on to host Ring Nation, a new America’s Funniest Home Videos-style clip show from MGM Television, Ring, and Big Fish Entertainment, the production company behind Live P.D. Described as a “daily dose of life’s unpredictable, heartwarming and hilarious viral videos” in a press release, Ring Nation will feature footage captured on people’s Ring cameras presented in a way that’s meant to be entertaining.
“Bringing the new community together is core to our mission at Ring, and Ring Nation gives friends and family a fun new way to enjoy time with one another,” Ring founder and Ring Nation executive producer Jamie Siminoff said in the press release. “We’re so excited to have Wanda Sykes join Ring Nation to share people’s memorable moments with viewers.”
As Deadline points out, Ring Nation’s a fairly transparent bit of corporate synergy for Amazon, which owns MGM Television, Big Fish, and Ring, and (obviously) has a vested interest in encouraging more people to outfit their homes with Ring technology. There are almost certainly Ring owners out there who are interested in participating in Ring Nation and will jump at the opportunity to have Wanda Sykes comment on whatever riveting footage they capture around their homes.
But as one of Ring’s most thinly-veiled attempts at normalizing the idea and practice of people constantly surveilling one another, Ring Nation may also be just the reminder some folks need to avoid that particular instance of our modern day panopticon.
Ring Nation is set to premiere in syndication on September 26th.