I hope you picked up $100 (at least!) using my tips for GSN Radio last week. This week, we'll be discussing its older and more profitable television counterpart, GSN Live. Airing from 3-6 pm Eastern (12-3 pm Pacific) every weekday, GSN Live is an interstitial program that airs during some breaks in regular GSN programming. At the end of each hour, they play a game where a home viewer (sometimes multiple viewers) can win prizes from cash to HDTVs to even vacations! GSN Live is a bit more difficult to get on and play but once you do, if you follow my instructions you can make the most of it!
The entry format is very similar to that of GSN Radio but there are some subtle, yet important differences. Unlike on Radio where you can play if you're 21, Live's age requirement is 18. A negative for some is that Live is only open to American residents. Eligible prospects will need to register at their website, GSN.com/live. (Hint: In order to register for Live, you need a GSN.com account. Since using multiple accounts is forbidden, not to mention frowned upon by me, the multiple phones trick will not work online.)
Ten online entries (and one phone entry) are accepted from :00 to :45 of that hour - when you enter for a game, you are only entering for the game in that hour. (Hint: The exception to this rule is for the Money Meter game at the end of the day. All internet entries made throughout the day before 5:15 ET are eligible to be chosen to play the special Money Meter trivia question.)
So, if you want to play the game in every hour, you'll need to register at three different points in the day. (Hint: Try spacing out your entries throughout the hour. Imagine it as if they're entries at a raffle - you'd rather have them at different areas in the drum instead of clumped together, right?) At :45 the floodgates are closed and the phone calls start going out.
Automated calls are made to randomly selected entrants. When you pick up the phone, you'll hear a greeting that invites you to press "1" to confirm your age. After you do this, one of three things will happen:
1) Absolutely nothing. You'll hear silence for a few moments and then the line will disconnect. Nothing personal, but you haven't been selected.
2) You'll hear a repetition of the phrase "Please stand by", followed by an "I'm sorry" message. This too unfortunately means you're not the lucky player.
3) You'll get the repetitive "Please stand by" followed by a message of "You're now being connected to the studio." Hey, congrats! You're the lone survivor in this game of random draw and you're about to play live on the air!
(Hint: If you don't get a call between :45 and :47, you're probably not going to play for that hour. Callers are usually selected immediately so that they can be prepared for the game.)
You'll have a few minutes to collect your nerves and relax. A nice producer will come on the line and congratulate you. He'll ask you for some quick anecdotes that you might want to talk with the hosts about and then he'll brief you on your game. Unlike Radio where there are a finite number of games they play, Live has a multitude of games that they can play. Some are trivia based while some are luck, like a "reach the magic number" game or a game based on The Price is Right's Plinko. (Hint: If possible, try to watch the hour of programming you're entering to play on. There are sometimes hints to what your game will be about or they might even give you the question right off the bat! If you don't feel comfortable with the premise of the game, you may not want to enter.) Still, odds are high of needing some knowledge for the game, so, as I always recommended, sit at your computer not only so you can use the internet if you need it, but sitting in a chair will allow you to calm yourself and focus more than if you're pacing around your house.
You'll listen to what's airing on GSN on your phone for a moment but then before you know it, Heidi Bohay and Debra Skelton are on the phone about ready to talk to you live on-air! If possible, try to savor all of this - most segments only last two to three minutes and it will be over before you know it. And hey, whaddaya know - you just won a pretty expensive prize! Congratuations! You'll be transferred to someone else who will take down your information so they can expedite you your prize package, containing affadavits and other forms. (Hint: Any prize over $599 needs to be claimed on your federal taxes. If you win prizes totaling over $1,200, the state of California taxes that and you will need to pay those taxes to GSN before they will send your prize. You're always free to not claim any prize for tax purposes.) Once you get the forms, send them back and you will have your prize within 120 days. You'll be free to play another game in 30 days.
I will tell you up front that it is definitely much harder to get onto GSN Live than GSN Radio, but the effort totally pays off when you're lounging in Miami or watching the game on your 52" plasma. The key is variation and persistence. Knowledge just comes in really handy. Keep at it and sooner or later all game show fans will hear your glee-filled voice on live television!
Chad Mosher is a past game show contestant, and has experience in many aspects of the game show industry. He contributes a weekly column here at About.com Game Shows, answering your questions and tackling all facets of the game show genre. If you have questions for Chad, you can post them here in the comments, or contact him directly through the link in his bio.
Logo courtesy GSN