The Circle

THE CIRCLE is a brand-new, daily, primetime reality popularity contest which starts in September on Channel 4. It’s a cross between Big Brother, Catfish and Black Mirror.

The contestants live in separate apartments in a newly refurbished London apartment block. Unlike any other reality show, they do not meet each other face-to-face until they are knocked out of the game.

Instead, they communicate with each other through a specially-designed social media platform which is a voice-activated platform, so there are no keyboards and no typing.

When one player speaks, the other player can immediately read what they’ve said and talk back to them. To the television viewer, it will look like a normal real life conversation, except neither player can see what the other one actually looks like. All they can see of the other person are the photos they have chosen to put up on their profile page.

In THE CIRCLE, you are what you share which is what makes THE CIRCLE so interesting and unusual, because this is a popularity contest decided on by the players themselves. And since the contestants only know each other by what they claim they are on their profile pages, they can chose to be whomever they think will make them the most popular person in the group.

They may decide being rigorously authentic about who they really are will make them most popular. Or they may want to make themselves younger, prettier or more glamorous than they really are. Or they may go much further and decide to present an entirely fictional version of themselves.

In THE CIRCLE, anyone can be anyone: it’s just a question of deciding which persona they each think will be most liked by the other contestants, because at the end of the series the most popular player will win a big cash prize of up to £50,000.