Please understand what this network is all about, then figure out how to be an asset.
In order to get this off the ground without venture capitalists buying equity and taking control, we need to create a highly efficient team and crowdfund the money ourselves.
A highly efficient team doesn’t need a leader barking orders and handing out tasks to followers who are waiting to be told what to do.
It needs a group of highly motivated and proficient individuals who understand the mission and intent, and work together to accomplish the mission.
If you don’t know something, google it and make yourself a Subject Matter Expert. If you don’t have time, find someone else who IS a subject matter expert to do it for you/teach you/work with you.
If you don’t know where to start, read the mission and intent and start breaking it down.
If no one hands you a specific task, look at the mission, the tasks, the implied tasks, the things everyone else is doing, ask questions, and create tasks for yourself.
Always BOLO to recruit others who can add value to the team- there is a giant pool of talent who wants to be a part of this in some way, find them and use them to accomplish the mission.
VETv- To be clear, this will not be on TV, it will be an app and website that gets streamed across all devices- imagine the “Netflix of the military,” but with all original content.
Veteran Entertainment Television will provide high-quality, entertaining programming dedicated to post 9/11 veterans in the United States.
Veteran Entertainment Television will become the nations most well-known and trusted source of entertaining, irreverent, and nostalgic content for post 9/11 veterans.
OUR AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
1) To make something that veterans feel is “ours.”
2) To make something that enables us to laugh at the things that are eating us up inside, thereby providing a therapy for those who are filled with demons from combat or other trauma.
3) To remind veterans of the best times of the military.
4) To make veterans proud of their service.
5) To use each episode to highlight a veteran musician, veteran owned business, and veteran non profit.
6)To provide a community for veterans that allows them to connect with each other, always with the notion that if they connect, bond, and support each other, they can keep each other alive.
7) To promote discussion amongst the community about serious issues that affect all of us.
8) To use the platform as a vehicle to positively influence the veteran community with helpful messages and life lessons.
9) To create dozens to hundreds of jobs within the company for veterans, thus making an almost all-veteran cast and crew.
What is the underlying Problem that led to the creation of this network-
There is no single hub of entertainment (This refers to books, music, magazines, blogs, news, movies, TV shows, comics) that is made specifically for post 9/11 veterans. There is a complete disconnect between what producers think veterans want to see, and what veterans actually want to see.
The entertainment industry is full of entertainment that claims to be for veterans, and claims to honor veterans, but the reality is that post 9/11 veterans don’t like it nor appreciate it.
Several networks CLAIM to be created for veterans, but their branding, marketing and messaging is professional, appropriate, honorable, and geared towards civilians. They create content that the DoD would approve, but that’s not what post 9/11 veterans want.
Their “respectful” content is the opposite of what a post 9/11 veteran wants to see. We want offensive, disrespectful, irreverent, and humorous.
To date, there has not been a network created specifically for those who have been a part of the military culture post 9/11.
Why post 9/11 veterans don’t like the “veteran entertainment” that already exists-
Our 3.6 million post 9/11 Veterans are different from our grandfathers generation of warriors. We truly are Generation Kill. Our worldview and our sense of humor is dark and irreverent, unprofessional, and cocky.
Most of the entertainment involving war and military is professional, respectful, careful, honorable, and serious. It maintains a connection to, and even a fear of the active duty military. This connection and fear guides the content to fit the image that the US military wants to portray to the public. This is purely for recruiting purposes. Therefore, most entertainment that claims to be for veterans is made by civilians with the civilian audience as the target.
Most war movies attempt to accurately depict the pain, tragedy, and horrors of war- and many war movies get the “tragedy” component right. However, when a film sets out to be “authentic” in it’s recreation of a dramatic war scene, it’s not something that a veteran wants to see. It’s something that can help civilians understand what veterans have been through.
We’ve already dealt with immense pain, tragedy, and trauma, we don’t want to RE-LIVE it!
Instead we like to look back on our service and LAUGH about our experiences. We like to talk about the battles we won, the successes we had in combat, the great things we did, and the best parts of our military service.
What makes post 9/11 veterans different from other generations?
Post 9/11 veterans are different because we spent 15 years dominating our enemies with superior weaponry, strategy, tactics, and ethos.
We annihilated the enemy everywhere we went. We were so superior that while we kicked the enemies asses, we were careful not to hurt civilians, and even helped civilians along the way. We patrolled through hostile cities, taking and returning fire from all directions, just to have a meeting with a village leader- where we would offer our assistance building hospitals and schools. We achieved a whole new level of combat badassery that has never been achieved in the history of humanity. We are beyond proud of this, we are cocky and arrogant.
While we might have taken casualties and watched our friends die and get hurt, when we went to battle we always came out victorious. This has created a sense of humor, pride, and cockiness in post 9/11 veterans when talking/thinking about our military service. This pride is reflected in every military occupation, to include those far from the battlefield, because every warrior, including the cooks, knows that their role in the fight was important.
When we talk about the battles we fought, we don’t talk about the sobering moments of friendly casualties. Instead we talk about the epic moments of glory when we destroyed the enemy and made a joke about it as we were doing it.
We talk about the funny and crazy things that happened in the midst of battle, or in between battles.
That’s what we want to see, because for many of us, that was our reality. Even if it wasn’t our reality all the time, it’s the reality that we WANT to remember.
If we’re going to look back at our war, we want to look back at how good we were at it, and how much fun we had doing it.
While the focus of the network is post 9/11 veterans, Gulf War 1 veterans from 1990 until 2001 have a similar mentality.
Consider the mentality of a someone who served between 1990 and 2001-
After decades of cold war tensions, they witnessed the fall of the soviet union and the Berlin wall. Then in 1991 they destroyed the third largest land army in the world in 3 days (Iraq), and felt secure in the dominance of the United States as the most powerful country in the world.
Therefore the arrogance and ego that exists within post 9/11 veterans is likely to be reflected amongst Gulf War 1 veterans, thus expanding the size of the target audience by 3.4 million.
There are 22.3 million veterans in the United States, which is a very large niche market, however it’s important to keep our target focused on the post 9/11 audience.
Anything else might water down the raw, gritty, irreverent nature that the network programming has on serious issues, which is what post 9/11 vets want.
If we cater to the older breed of veterans who prefer a more honorable and professional representation of their service, we water down the network and become like all the other politically correct and inclusive network attempts that have failed to gain traction.
There have been many attempts to create networks for veterans, but not a single one of them has been willing to completely ignore the civilian population in its content, marketing, and branding.
Make no mistake about it, inclusion of ANYONE outside the war-mongering-post 9/11 target-audience is damaging to the network brand and mission. The network cannot hesitate to create content that is highly offensive and off-putting to anyone outside the target audience- to include veterans of other eras.
The understanding of post 9/11 veteran culture is not limited to veterans, but also their spouses and children, because they have shared our pain, and thus, shared our humor.
Why veterans, in general, are different-
90% of the jobs done in the military can also be done in the civilian world. However, when done in the military, these jobs will suck more than the same jobs in the civilian world.
Why do these jobs suck more in the military?
1) In the military you have 18 year old idiots working with you, who make stupid decisions on a daily basis that become the problem of the unit.
2) Every level of leadership is given a mission to accomplish something tangible, like fixing 45 computers. In addition to fixing those 45 computers, the leader has to make sure that all 30 of his soldiers have shelter, food, water, and health care. This creates more work, problems, and stress for every level of leadership.
3) The military is run terribly inefficiently which creates constant bitching and loss of respect, confidence, motivation.
4) The lower ranks of the military can be looked at and treated as pawns, janitors, shit cleaners, rock collectors, cannon fodder, and bullet sponges. This means long hours, shitty jobs, little food, long periods of waiting, no respect, and generally poor treatment.
5) No one is ever given “all the tools they need.” They are given the bare minimum and forced to make it work. This causes stress.
6) If there’s ever a question about what to do with the lower ranks, the answer is usually simple. “They can wait.”
7) When you’ve accepted that death is part of your job, everything becomes a joke.
Veterans deal with unfortunate circumstances with humor. In a lifestyle full of pain and suffering, a veteran’s natural response is to laugh about it. This has changed the way we deal with pain for the rest of our lives.
Our experiences in the military have taught us to use humor to deal with pain, suffering, tragedy, and trauma.
As a result of the way we’ve learned to see the world, we prefer entertainment that makes a joke about serious issues, but most specifically, issues that we are intimately familiar with. As a community, veterans are intimately familiar with-
Death, dismemberment, TBI, sex, race, PTSD, family, infidelity, domestic violence, STDs, the UCMJ, senior leadership, rules of engagement, torture, killing, reintegration to civilian world, the VA, veteran suicide, gays in the military, women in the military, prostitution, drug use, and more.
What veterans want!
Veteran’s prefer entertainment that is dark, vulgar, offensive, inappropriate, irreverent, childish, and just plain wrong. Often, there’s a competition amongst veterans to make a joke that is more inappropriate.
In general, the more serious the issue, the more intense the laughter.
We prefer entertainment that many civilians find highly offensive and refuse to be associated with. We prefer entertainment that ruins the civilian image of the honorable, respectable, professional- United States Veteran.
A veteran wants entertainment that supports the way they deal with and reflect on their experiences.
We prefer entertainment that appeals to our gallows humor.
We prefer entertainment that makes a joke about the issues that we have been forced to take seriously.
Culture within culture-
When we join the military the first part of the indoctrination process is to assimilate into the military culture. We must learn the military language, the customs, courtesies, procedures, and way of life. The military as a whole has it’s own culture.
Each branch has its own culture. The ways they talk and interact with each other are different. Further, there are subcultures within each branch.
The Marine Corps pilot community is an entirely separate culture that has its own customs, language, attitudes, and interactions. The same goes for the Navy ship bound community, submariners, Navy divers, Army Corps of Engineers, tankers, Motor T, Medics/Corpsmen, and so on.
To date, no show has ever accurately depicted nor parodied each subculture within the military.
As a whole, the military culture is homogenous because we’ve all been indoctrinated into it.
This culture is unique, and therefore those who have been a part of it have a special bond and understanding that the civilian world will never get.
We have our own way of looking at the world, dealing with the daily grind, and dealing with tragedy.
We have our own heroes, idols, icons, and legends that civilians are naïve to, because they’re focused on what the Hollywood Industrial Complex feeds them on a daily basis.
The civilian populace has the Kardashian’s, Hollywood celebrities, and American Idols to look up to, to follow, and talk about in their free time.
The veteran community has Chris Kyle, Marcus Luttrell, Tim Kennedy, Leroy Petry, Dakota Meyer, Kyle Carpenter, Edward Beyers, Mat Best, Rocco, JT, and the creators of Terminal Lance, Terminal Boots, and A Combat Veteran.
We have a group of heroes and idols who, contrary to the civilian populace, represent the values and strengths that make this country exceptional.
It’s time that we redirect the focus of the veteran community to those who deserve our adoration.
This network will always put our idols at the forefront of our attention. This network will make legends and deities out of the warriors who truly deserve it, and our new brand of heroes will become a part of our daily culture.
A network that taps into the pride, humor, and arrogance of post 9/11 veterans. A network that is not afraid to be politically incorrect, inappropriate, and irreverent.
A network that will always put our the most deserving idols at the forefront of our attention.
A network that will further the legends of the warriors who truly deserve it.
A network that is not afraid to create content that exposes veterans for who we really are, without regards for what the civilian populace will think of us.
We are nothing like the commercials, combat is nothing like the history channel, and the way we process the things we experienced in combat is nothing like anything a civilian has seen in any documentary.
This network will create content that reminds veterans that we were part of the greatest fighting force that the world has ever known. It will remind veterans that we were FORTUNATE to be a part of something so powerful and righteous, something immensely dangerous and yet shockingly kind, caring, and compassionate.
This network will recreate only the best parts of the military experience and military culture, and at the forefront of everything the network creates, will be the military sense of humor.
Humor has always gotten us through the day.
At the end of every episode of every show that this network produces or licenses, will be something helpful or informative for veterans. This could include highlighting a veteran musician, business, or non profit.
It could be a helpful tip of the day, or a specific plan to achieve something.
This network will get the attention of our nations veterans with top quality, irreverent entertainment, once we have their attention, our entertainment will help them laugh at serious issues that plague their mind, or makes them feel better about their military service- then we will insert positive messages and helpful tips to improve the quality of their lives.
This network will create the sense of community that veterans miss when they leave the military. The end result is that as a community we will laugh together at the things our civilian friends don’t understand.
We will laugh together, heal together, learn together, and grow stronger together.
The end result from this veteran specific entertainment-
Stronger sense of community, more jobs, more businesses created, more connections made amongst veterans, less PTSD, fewer suicides.
That is the power of this network.
We create our own Netflix and have a subscription service for just $5 a month. Streamed to your computer, phone, tablet, roku, and Apple Air.
I have the network infrastructure readily available to use, WITHOUT any up front cost, which is the KEY to making this possible. It’s already being used by other networks, its simple, convenient, and flawless.
As a brand new network, we must create our own programming, which is what the initial round of funding will go towards. We will start small and steadily add more shows to the network as we can afford it. We will create more of our own shows as well as license shows from creators who are already making the type of content that we want to see on this network.
When we launch we will guarantee at the bare MINIMUM, one episode of “Kill, Die, Laugh” per week. The “Chappelle Show of the military” is a sketch comedy that parodies the most serious aspects of war, military, and veteran life.
The show is notorious for its handling of sexuality, brotherhood, war, and death. The sketches premiere intricate military topics, such as sex, race, the VA, PTSD, family, infidelity, domestic violence, the UCMJ, high level leadership, rules of engagement, torture, killing, reintegration to civilian world, veteran suicide, homosexuality in the military, women in the military, transgenders, recruiting, prostitution, drug use, and military dating, all performed in a comedic fashion with a touch of antagonism- while utilizing a mostly veteran crew and cast, and famous combat veterans as special guests.
Each episode highlights a single issue, like PTSD. In Dave Chappelle style there is a comical introduction to the issue in front of a live audience, the showing of highly controversial, offensive, and irreverent sketches about the issue, then a Q&A that helps provide a sense of closure or understanding, enabling the veteran audience to move forward in a positive way.
The show wraps up with a veteran musician, and throughout the show we’ll highlight a small veteran owned business and a veteran non-profit.
The initial round of money raised will be poured into a minimum of 30, 30-60 minute episodes of “Kill, Die, Laugh.”
This show will set the standard for the network, which states-
Let’s get together, laugh, reflect, move on, and support our community/each other.
As resources provide, we will create more shows like the ones listed below, the options are endless:
Kill, Die, Laugh– The Chappelle Show of the military.
Field Day– The SNL of the military.
Gods of War– Realistic, gruesome, motivating re-enactments of badass medal citations from every era. Imagine the gruesomeness and realism seen in Tarantino’s “Inglorious Bastards” but using true stories of American Badassery.
Jodie- A parody of “Army Wives” that shows what Army wives are REALLY like.
Irreverent War Stories– Warriors tell their war stories with a sense of humor. This also becomes a podcast.
Combat Replays/bloopers– Warriors provide humorous commentary while watching replays of terrorists getting smoked.
(This could be a Rob Dyrdek type of show with a live audience and comedic guests who provide commentary, or a Sportscenter type show with two anchors, or Tosh.o style with one commentator.)
Warrior Sports Network- A mock ESPN that will showcase all the week’s battles fought around the world. From gang bangers in the US to ISIS in Iraq, to child soldiers in Africa, to Abu Sayef in the Phillippines. If it involves gunfights we’ll cover it, and make a joke about it. Hosted by well known combat veterans.
The Veteran Bachelor-
7 veteran women and one civilian compete to win the heart of a veteran bachelor.
The Veteran Bachelorette- 7 veteran men and one civilian compete to win the heart of a veteran bachelorette.
The Surreal World- 8 veteran strangers live in a dream home somewhere in the US and are given a mission to accomplish together.
Military Officers pretend to be a lower enlisted rank to get a feel for troop life at the lower levels.
and many more…..
Not only will we create our own original programming, but we can license shows that already exist that fit the brand.
Drunken Debrief- Warriors tell their stories from military life with a sense of humor, and the stories get re-enacted by professional actors. This is by far the best show I’ve seen about military life. Since it already exists on YouTube it won’t add much value to the network, HOWEVER, VETv can offer to license an extended cut that is only available on our network. This would add value to us, and would provide more exposure for them and their partners. They might say no, but this is an example of what’s possible.
Cigars and Sea Stories– This is currently a podcast that already exists, but we could offer to license the video version of their podcast, exclusively on our network.
For $5 you get-
1) All videos on the network streamed onto all devices including android, apple, roku, and website.
2) Discounts on merchandise from us and our partners- to include books, comics, apparel. (10% off of one t-shirt from Grunt Style, or any other apparel company we partner with pays for almost half of one months membership.)
3) Discounts and VIP access to shows and movies put on by us and our partners. (Comedy shows, music concerts, veteran movies)
4) Direct access to each non-profit that we partner with- to facilitate help for veterans who need it.
5) The knowledge that you are hiring veterans and supporting the first ever entertainment network for veterans, without content dilution by civilian influences.
6) A stronger sense of community amongst veterans that will empower us to continue creating, working towards a common mission, coming together, and supporting each other, which will lead to higher quality of life, more self worth, less isolation, and less suicide.
This network will give veteran entertainers the opportunity to make a living with their talents, while also giving the veteran community what they want and need.
We’ve been giving away our content for free long enough. Now the community has shown that if they like it, they will pay for it.
Plan of action-
1) Create the VETv indiegogo campaign with a great marketing video, but don’t launch. Market the campaign to create buzz and get the word out.
***This is by far the most important part of the process because this is where all the initial funding comes from. Article 15 and Ranger Up raised over a million for ONE movie. VETv is a self-sustaining network that will last a lifetime, so we can crush that goal. This will require a relationship built with every veteran organization/Facebook group/page and blog in the country. The leaders of these organizations/blogs/groups/pages need to believe in this network and rally their followings around this network.
2) Get the audience involved in the branding and creation of the individual shows and sketches. Audience involvement in the form of submissions, discussions, comments, and polls is KEY!
3) Use the audience to pull more stories, guests, and characters for each show.
4) Release one script or one concept for each episode of Kill, Die, Laugh every week. Thus creating excitement and using audience input to improve the show.
5) Sign on partners to create content, market their products, and give discounts to their products/services.
6) Sign sponsors to advertise on the network.
7) Find a production company to create Kill, Die, Laugh- DONE
8) Buy the rights to content from other veteran entertainers, while creating guidelines for their content. Thus ensuring the network will be filled with the type of entertainment that veterans want, from the people they want to see.
9) Announce all partners/sponsors/actors/producers AS they get on board.
9a) Well planned PR campaign about the network and the indiegogo, using all of our connections to journalists and reporters.
10) Hire someone to manage perks for the indiegogo campaign.
11) Make the indiegogo campaign LIVE by October, 2016.
12) Continue 1-10 while the campaign is live.
12) Finalize the episode/sketch/theme list.
13) When campaign finishes- create BUDGET, production schedule, find locations, casting calls.
14) Begin production of first 30 episodes.
15) Release teasers to all social media and websites as we film to keep the audience engaged and still feel a part of the process.
16) Continue marketing to generate subscriptions to the network.
17) Launch first episode by June 2017
Creation of marketing materials
Creation of the story and intentions behind VETv
Creation and management of all social media accounts
Creation and management of website and blog
Content Calendar for all accounts
Email list building and management
Introduction of the network to all necessary groups- 1000s of facebook, twitter, and reddit groups.
-Identify all parties who would benefit from being involved with the network.
-Veteran owned businesses, regardless of industry, could benefit by advertising to our audience. The exposure would be good for them.
-Veteran musicians, entertainers, artists could benefit from the exposure on our network.
-Create 2 pricing schedules for network sponsors and advertisers. One for Veteran Owned, and one for civilian owned.
Identify businesses that share our target market-
-Guns, Military apparel, Tactical gear, Hunting supplies, Beer, Liquor, Dip, Cigarettes, Supplements, etc.
– We would want all the sponsors and partners announced as they get on board with the network, this helps build value before launch and attracts subscribers.
– Our partners should offer a discount to their products and services.
“With your subscription to VETv you get 10% off of anything purchased at the following companies- Ranger UP, Article 15, Grunt Style, Black Rifle Coffee, Jack Daniels, Nattie Ice, Tactical SHT, HR Block, etc…just click on the company you want to shop at and use your promo code, which can be found in your VETv subscription confirmation email.”
– An affiliate program needs to be created with every company that markets their products on their network, thus adding revenue.
-Because this network will get so much attention, this can be the hub for every veteran owned business to market their products, with a discount.
This is just an example, I have no idea if these numbers are ideal, but this is how it would start out.
|Veteran Owned Business- Yearly Sales||Cost to advertise per episode|
Contracts and legalities
To ensure everything we do is legal. Need entertainment law experience.
Website Management- Work with Marketing Dept
Graphic Design- work with Marketing Dept
Indiegogo perks fulfillment
Process and ship all perk orders-
Film production company-
ORP Productions is the company I’m working with now-
There will be dozens of jobs on every set for everything we produce, 95% of them will require prior set experience.
This is completely doable, especially since the network infrastructure is already there. We know what we need and what we want as a veteran community, now it’s just a matter of coming together to make it happen.
Right now no one’s paid, we’re all doing this because we believe in it, but make no mistake, this will become incredibly lucrative and WILL create full time, well paid jobs for dozens of veterans, and down the road, hundreds of veterans.
Long term I’d like to build squad bays on several acres of land that we use for filming- this will help us avoid the astronomical fees for renting sets.
The housing will be filled up with vets who need a job, need shelter, and need a mission. These vets will get everything they need to live, and in return they will build the sets, serve as Production Assistants, manage themselves, and maintain the property. Nobody stays for free, everyone works. When they’re ready to move on with their lives, and after they’ve proven themselves sober and fit for duty, they can be hired on to a paid position, or they’ll get a small chunk of change to move out and move on.
This method of rehabilitation is modeled after VVSD and The Alpha Project.
Remember, what you don’t know, google does. No excuses.
If you want to be a part of this please do these two things!
Please join the email list if you think you can be an asset to the best thing the veteran community has had in many years. (since the post 9/11 GI bill maybe?? Yeah lets go with that)
Once you’ve joined the list, shoot me an email,
We’ll identify our strengths and begin working together to make dream this our reality.