Lilian Min
March 26, 2015 11:40 am

Would you rather be a coach on The Voice than a contestant? Do you consider yourself a person of pretty amazing music taste? Are you always listening to artists months before they hit it big? Prove your abilities on the new app Chosen, which turns the act of listening into a phone-based competition.

With a tagline like “Fame is the game,” Chosen is very much about being noticed. Unlike performance-based reality TV competitions like American IdolThe Voice, and many others, Chosen spotlights both talent and the ability to spot talent. Former Beats Music CEO and app creator David Hyman describes Chosen as “the first video-based, crowd judged, competition game for your mobile phone. Performers and musicians compete, and you as the spectator are also competing. You’re competing with others to move up the ranks as a judge. [It’s] applying traditional game mechanics to the music consumption space for the first time.” That means, you have the ability to become either Kelly Clarkson or Simon Cowell, but instead of being up against the primetime lineup, you’re competing with anybody using the Chosen app.

As for his decision to make Chosen a phone-based game instead of any other format, Hyman says it was to “free it from the constraints of linear based television where everything is kind of lowest common denominator and everybody sings in a particular style,” opening up the talent pool to “Swiss Yodelers, High School Marching Bands, Death Metal, Punk Rock — it doesn’t matter.”

But what does the app actually, well, do? Well, there are different functions, depending on whether you’re there to be a judge or to be judged.

Performers will be able to upload high quality videos of themselves, but because of the different competition genres available, rockers won’t be forced to sing the blues, while beatboxers won’t have to awkwardly weave their skills into diva ballads. As for judges, by ranking others, you move up your own ranks, aka you’ll actually be rewarded for making snap judgments about people? Sign me up!

The app right now is invite-only, but if Chosen goes the way of other niche talent showcases like Vine and Snapchat, we’re going to be seeing a new generation of mobile media stars. Reality TV competitions aren’t out of the game yet, but the future is here, and you’re judging it.

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