Last updated
Also known asLG15
Lonely Girl
Genre Video blog, drama, comedy
Created byMiles Beckett
Mesh Flinders
Greg Goodfried
Amanda Goodfried
Developed by EQAL
Directed byMarcello Daciano
Colin Hargraves
Glenn Rubenstein
Amanda Goodfried
Jackson Davis
Kevin Schlanser
Mesh Flinders
Miles Beckett
Yumiko Aoyagi
Starring Jessica Lee Rose
Yousef Abu-Taleb
Jackson Davis
Becki Kregoski
Alexandra Dreyfus
Maxwell Glick
Katherine Pawlak
Bitsie Tulloch
Crystal Young
Melanie Merkosky
Raegan Payne
Voices ofKevin Schlanser
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes547
Executive producer(s) Amanda Goodfried
Glenn Rubenstein
Greg Goodfried
Mesh Flinders
Miles Beckett
Yumiko Aoyagi
Producer(s) Amanda Goodfried
Glenn Rubenstein
Mesh Flinders
Miles Beckett
Yumiko Aoyagi
Production location(s) Marin County, California
Editor(s) Amanda Goodfried
Colin Hargraves
Glenn Rubenstein
Ian Schwartz
Kevin Schlanser
Miles Beckett
Camera setup Amanda Goodfried
Colin Hargraves
Glenn Rubenstein
Kevin Schlanser
Mesh Flinders
Miles Beckett
Yousef Abu-Taleb
Running timeVaries
Original network YouTube
Original releaseJune 16, 2006 
August 1, 2008
Followed by LG15: The Resistance
Related shows KateModern
LG15: The Last
LG15: Outbreak
External links

lonelygirl15 was a web series that ran from June 16, 2006, to August 1, 2008. It was launched in the early days of YouTube, just 16 months after the video platform went online. Initially pretending to be an authentic YouTube video diary or vlog, the show gained wide media attention when it was revealed as fictional in September 2006. [1] It started with the mundane life of a teenage girl, later the show moved to a bizarre narrative that portrayed her dealings with secret occult practices within her family, and included the mysterious disappearance of her parents after she refused to attend a "secret" ceremony prescribed by the leaders of the family's cult. It was created by Mesh Flinders, a screenwriter and filmmaker from Marin County, California, Miles Beckett, a surgical residency dropout turned filmmaker, and Greg Goodfried, a former attorney with Mitchell, Silberberg and Knupp, LLP.

A web series is a series of scripted or non-scripted videos, generally in episodic form, released on the Internet and part of the web television medium, which first emerged in the late 1990s and became more prominent in the early 2000s. A single instance of a web series program can be called an episode or "webisode", however the latter term is not often used. In general, web series can be watched on a range of platforms, including desktop, laptop, tablets and smartphones. They can also be watched on television.

YouTube Video-sharing service owned by Google

YouTube is an American video-sharing website headquartered in San Bruno, California. Three former PayPal employees—Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim—created the service in February 2005. Google bought the site in November 2006 for US$1.65 billion; YouTube now operates as one of Google's subsidiaries.

A video blog or video log, usually shortened to vlog, is a form of blog for which the medium is video, and is a form of web television. Vlog entries often combine embedded video with supporting text, images, and other metadata. Entries can be recorded in one take or cut into multiple parts. Vlog category is popular on the video-sharing platform YouTube.



Launched in the early days of YouTube, just 16 months after the video platform went online, lonelygirl15 focuses on the life of a teenage girl named Bree – played by a 19-year-old actress Jessica Rose [2] – whose YouTube username is the eponymous "lonelygirl15". After the fictional status of the show was revealed in September 2006, it gradually evolved into a multi-character series including both character videoblogs and action sequences, with a complex story universe involving "trait positive girls" who are sought by an evil organization called "The Order".

Jessica Lee Rose New Zealand-American actress

Jessica Lee Rose is an American-New Zealand actress who first gained popularity after playing the role of lonelygirl15, a fictional teenage homeschooled character named Bree who appeared in YouTube video blogs, beginning in June 2006. The mystery surrounding the possible fictionality of her character led to an outing by the Los Angeles Times, which thrust her into the mainstream spotlight. In 2007, Rose won a Webby for this role.

Eponym Someone or something after which something is named

An eponym is a person, place, or thing after whom or after which something is named, or believed to be named. The adjectives derived from eponym include eponymous and eponymic. For example, Elizabeth I of England is the eponym of the Elizabethan era, and "the eponymous founder of the Ford Motor Company" refers to Henry Ford. Recently, especially in the recorded-music industry, eponymous has been used to mean "named after its central character or creator".

Fictional universe Self-consistent fictional setting with elements that may differ from the real world

A fictional universe, or fictional world, is a self-consistent setting with events, and often other elements, that differ from the real world. It may also be called an imagined, constructed or fictional realm. Fictional universes may appear in novels, comics, films, television shows, video games, and other creative works.

The three creators of lonelygirl15 were Mesh Flinders, a screenwriter and filmmaker from Marin County, California, Miles Beckett, a surgical residency dropout turned filmmaker, and Greg Goodfried, a former attorney with Mitchell, Silberberg and Knupp, LLP. [3]

Marin County, California County in California, United States

Marin County is a county located in the San Francisco Bay Area of the U.S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 252,409. Its county seat is San Rafael. Marin County is included in the San Francisco–Oakland–Berkeley, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco.

The series was developed under the working title The Children of Anchor Cove. [4] New videos appeared, eventually at the rate of four to five clips a week, first on YouTube and lg15.com, and later on MySpace. As of July 2008, the series had more than 110 million combined views.

lonelygirl15 has generated a number of spin-off shows. Its first, the British-based KateModern , ran from July 2007 through June 2008 on Bebo, and took place in the same fictional universe.

In media, a spin-off is a radio program, television program, video game, film, or any narrative work, derived from already existing works that focus on more details and different aspects from the original work.


KateModern was the sister series of lonelygirl15. The series, which was announced on July 16, 2007, began filming on July 9 and the first video, Fight and Flight, was released on July 16. The show is produced by EQAL in partnership with Bebo. It ended on June 28, 2008, slightly less than a year following its original release.

Bebo Social networking service

Bebo was a social networking website launched in 2005 that now describes itself as "a company that dreams up ideas for fun social apps". Grant Denholm, the man behind the Bebo relaunch, has confirmed that the site will not be returning as a social network but as a company that makes social apps. The company launched the app Blab in early 2014, which closed in 2016. In December 2014 a new version of Bebo launched as an avatar hashtag messaging app.

Along with Amanda Goodfried, an attorney who worked with Creative Arts Agency (CAA), the creators of lonelygirl15 created LG15 Studios to produce original interactive content online. LG15 Studios became EQAL in April 2008, with receipt of $5 million in venture capital to expand their offerings.


EQAL was a media and technology company founded in 2008 by Miles Beckett and Greg Goodfried, two of the creators of lonelygirl15. EQAL built influencer networks around celebrities, consumer brands, and intellectual properties. Prior to building influencer networks, EQAL produced lonelygirl15 (LG15) as well as for producing other series in the LG15 Universe including KateModern in association with Bebo and LG15: The Resistance, as well as Harper’s Globe, the original web series, commissioned by CBS as a tie-in for the series, Harper’s Island.

The lonelygirl15 finale took place on August 1, 2008, and included a teaser for EQAL's next spinoff, LG15: The Resistance, which ran through December 2008.

Since 2009, EQAL has aired two more spinoff series which are produced by contest winners, including LG15: The Last, which started airing in January 2009, and LG15: Outbreak, which began in January 2010.

On June 16, 2016, the tenth anniversary of the first video on the account, a new video on the account with Jessica Lee Rose returning as Bree Avery was uploaded, with a message that the series was restarting. [5] This revival appears to have been aborted, as no further videos (which were posted on Danielbeast's channel) have appeared since late 2016.

Cast and characters


Before the vlog was revealed as fake, the title character dealt with mundane teenage problems such as being grounded; lonelygirl15 posted video replies to, and dropped the names of popular YouTubers. To further the initial illusion that Bree was a real girl, a MySpace page was set up for her and she seemingly began corresponding with many of her fans.

Later the show moved to a bizarre narrative that portrayed her dealings with secret occult practices within her family, and included the mysterious disappearance of her parents after she refused to attend a "secret" ceremony prescribed by the leaders of the family's cult.

Hoax accusations

At first discussion regarding why they thought lonelygirl15 might be a fake went on in her video comments. In early August 2006, a fan began a discussion at the previously stagnant www.lonelygirl15.com message boards and raised an investigation into who or what was behind lonelygirl15. Soon the message board became full of discussion about even the tiniest details in each of her videos, everything from the quality of the lighting to the flora seen in her outdoor videos. Fans used the forum to collect, organize and share their findings, and pointed to small inconsistencies within the videos as evidence that the story might not be genuine, wondering if Bree's posts were part of a teaser campaign for a television show or an upcoming movie [7] (similar to the viral marketing used to promote The Blair Witch Project ). Others thought that the blog might be part of an alternate reality game. [8]

Bree as lonelygirl15 in a video blog Lonelygirl15 bree pmonkey.jpg
Bree as lonelygirl15 in a video blog

Los Angeles Times reporter Richard Rushfield was the first to provide proof of a hoax, when he wrote of Shaina Wedmedyk, Chris Patterson, and an anonymous blogger law student, who set up a sting on MySpace to reveal that the Creative Artists Agency was behind the videos.[ citation needed ] Eventually it was revealed that 16-year-old "Bree" was played by 19-year-old actress Jessica Rose. [9] [10] Media sources seized upon the story, covering both the search process and the eventual "outing" as a fictional series. [3] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17]

New York Times reporter Virginia Heffernan expanded on the series of revelations on September 12 by publishing an article which confirmed Jessica Rose's identity, and revealed the identities of her "co-conspirators", Ramesh Flinders, a screenwriter and filmmaker from Marin County, California, and Miles Beckett, a doctor-turned-filmmaker. Software engineer Grant Steinfeld was also involved in this project, as a photographer. Amanda Solomon Goodfried assisted in their efforts to hide their identities as well as posed as "Bree"'s online alter-ego. Goodfried's father-in-law, Kenneth Goodfried, handled various legal matters. The personnel involved worked under a non-disclosure agreement, according to Grant Steinfeld. Steinfeld has verified most of this information to the Times, and provided photographs he took of Rose on set as proof. [3] Also on September 12, the three main creators gave an interview to the Los Angeles Times revealing the third major partner as Greg Goodfried. [17]

After the fictional nature of lonelygirl15 was revealed, the storyline continued to develop via new videos posted to both YouTube and Revver. However, after YouTube partnered with Myspace, videos stopped being posted on lonelygirl15's Revver account, and only became viewable via YouTube and MyspaceTV.[ citation needed ]

After the discovery of the hoax

Jessica Rose participated in a United Nations campaign in 2006, to fight poverty through an online anti-poverty video. [18] Rose portrayed the lonelygirl15 character as she sat by herself in her bedroom talking to the camera. The subject matter in the video focused on poverty relief, which broke from the regular subject matter of the show. The video was posted on an alternate account, separate from the main channel. [19]

On November 20, 2006, lonelygirl15.com announced that the spin-off OpAphid was the official alternate reality game of lonelygirl15. [20] OpAphid began in late September with what many speculated was a well-produced fan effort, and this announcement merged its characters OpAphid, Tachyon, and 10033/Brother, into the series storyline and continuity. In early February 2007, it was revealed that Glenn Rubenstein was the original puppetmaster behind the OpAphid alternate reality game and also the creator of its characters, OpAphid, Tachyon, and Brother. Due to internal issues between the Creators and Glenn, OpAphid was no longer the official ARG.

A 2006 episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent was based on the lonelygirl15 phenomenon. The episode "Weeping Willow" featured a blogger named weepingwillow17, played by Michelle Trachtenberg. Willow and her boyfriend were kidnapped by Men in Black who demanded her fans donate money to a website to save their lives. The investigators did not know if Willow was real or fake. Various other video bloggers were also seen decrying weepingwillow as a fake, just like many did on YouTube. The site on the episode was named YouLenz.

Awards and recognition

The lonelygirl15 blog won Biggest Web Hit Award on VH1's Big in '06 Awards. [21]

In the "Best Series" category of the inaugural YouTube Video awards in March 2007, the lonelygirl15 series finished fourth. [22] The New York Times attributed Lonelygirl's finish to the YouTube community's ill will towards the series. [23]

On August 3, 2007, Season One of lonelygirl15 celebrated its finale with an exclusive on MySpaceTV known as "12 in 12" where 12 videos were uploaded over the course of 12 hours from 8 am PST to 7 pm PST, culminating in the highest one-day viewership ever for the series. A "summary" video from the first season was offered as a part of the event, and it logged in over a million views on its own.


lonelygirl15 was the first Internet series to introduce product integration [25] when the episode "Truckstop Reunion" featured the characters eating and displaying Hershey's Icebreaker's Sours Gum.

In another example of a product integration first, lonelygirl15 landed on the front page of Variety for the integration of a character from Neutrogena in the storyline over the period of more than two months. Dr. Spencer Gilman became such a popular character that Neutrogena made him "Employee of the Month" and gave him his own e-mail account on the company's corporate website.

See also


  1. "Lonelygirl15 is back with a very eerie video". 2016-06-23. Retrieved 2016-06-25.
  2. "SVW Exclusive: The identity of LonelyGirl15" . Retrieved 2007-08-14.
  3. 1 2 3 Heffernan, Virginia and Zeller, Tom (2006-09-12). "'Lonely Girl' (and Friends) Just Wanted Movie Deal". The New York Times. Retrieved 2006-09-13.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  4. Gentile, Gary (September 17, 2006). "She fooled fans ... and is now famous". NorthJersey.com. Archived from the original on November 16, 2006. Retrieved 20 July 2010.
  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qwklfIbSAgA
  6. http://www.lg15.com/lgpedia/index.php?title=Daniel_reappears
  7. Sternbergh, Adam (2006-08-28). "Hey There, Lonelygirl". New York Magazine . Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  8. Cook, Lee (2006-09-29). "LonelyGirl15". Alternate Reality Gaming Network. Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  9. Flemming, Brian (2006-08-21). "Lonelygirl15 jumps the shark" . Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  10. Trademark Application [ permanent dead link ]
  11. Rushfield, Richard and Hoffman, Claire (2006-09-08). "Mystery Fuels Huge Popularity of Web's Lonelygirl15". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on October 16, 2006. Retrieved 2006-09-13.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  12. "lonelygirl15 revealed : jessica rose aspiring actress". Top of the Tube. 2006-09-12. Archived from the original on November 7, 2006. Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  13. mgpapas (2006-09-12). Lonelygirl15 a.k.a. Bree a.k.a. Jessica Rose Exposed (YouTube video).
  14. Foremski, Matt & Foremski, Tom (2006-09-12). "SVW Exclusive: The identity of LonelyGirl15". Silicon Valley Watcher. Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  15. Foremski, Tom (2006-09-12). "The Hunt for LonelyGirl15: Life in a blogger household . ." Silicon Valley Watcher. Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  16. Foremski, Tom (2006-09-12). "How the secret identity of LonelyGirl15 was found". Silicon Valley Watcher. Retrieved 2006-09-13.
  17. 1 2 Rushfield, Richard and Hoffman, Claire (2006-09-13). "Lonelygirl15 Is Brainchild of 3 Filmmakers". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved 2006-09-13.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)[ dead link ]
  18. Suzanne Vranica (2006-10-09). "U.N. Enlists Internet Star for Antipoverty Pitch". charity. Wall Street Journal – online. Retrieved 2006-10-09.
  19. Stand Up Lonelygirl15 Youtube.com
  20. lonelygirl15.com Archived June 29, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  21. Vh1.com: Big in 06 Awards – It doesn't get any bigger than this! VH1.com
  22. cnn.com Archived April 7, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  23. Heffernan, Virginia (27 March 2007). "SCREENS; YouTube Awards the Top of Its Heap". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 July 2010.
  24. Frankel, Daniel (2007-10-04). "LonelyGirl15". Variety . Retrieved 2008-03-27.
  25. Gentile, Gary (August 3, 2007). "Web drama wraps groundbreaking first 'season'". USA Today (Associated Press). Retrieved 2009-10-13.

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