“Let’s talk about ZFX, Baby! Let’s talk about you and me. Let’s talk about all the good things and the bad things that may be. Let’s talk about ZFX!” – Salt N Pepa, 1991. Remix by Anne, 2019.
Did you hear the news? ZFX is BACK, Baby! It brings with it some good news and some bad news. Let’s review:
The good news:
There is no 30 day rule applied, which means anyone who won some of the Zed Zillionaire’s zillions is still eligible to play. You can only win once though, so after you win a ZFX you’re out for the rest of the season. This ZFX season ends on October 18th.
Every time someone guesses wrong, the jackpot goes up $500. FIVE. HUNDRED. DOLLARS. Wowzers. Years ago it used to go up by $100 ($400 per day), then it jumped to $250 ($1000 per day). $500 per play is a major increase!
Which brings me to the bad news:
There are no set times when it will play. When they play the sound on air, that is your cue to call. They will randomly select a player (NOT caller 9!) This means you have to listen to Zed ALL day (5:30am to 7pm) and can’t schedule your coffee breaks around the old 8, 11, 2, and 5 schedule. There’s no point hanging around the office after the 5pm quitting time, waiting for the cue to call so you can use the office phone (which is always better for getting through!)
Students who used to tune in with their headphones in/between classes can no longer listen at set times. Office workers who used to put up their “on break” signs and not answer phone calls five minutes before 8, 11, 2, and 5 will no longer be able to prepare for the cue.
On the one hand, this tactic is brilliant – listen to Zed all day. Period. However, it’s possible it’ll backfire and people will not go out of their way to listen. They will just listen whenever and *maybe* the cue will come during that time.
This is the ideal situation for contesters though – those of us who have freedom to call at a second’s notice will be the ones who get to play the most. In theory. We’ll see how this plays out. I actually have a life too and used to schedule my day around the 8, 11, 2 and 5 cues. Most errands and appointments were scheduled between 11:20 and 1:50 so I didn’t miss a play. Now I can run errands anytime but will likely miss a TON of plays. Boo!
Luckily they will be listing all the guesses on their site HERE. The only way to know I’ve missed a play is to check the site to see if there’s a new guess on the list. I’m not sure I like all this randomness…
Another item for the bad news section: they will not be posting the sound on their website. You will have to try to record the sound off the radio yourself so you can listen to it over and over. It always sounds completely different when you do that so try to find a friend who has a good recording. Ugh. We’re going to get a lot of wrong answers.
And now we’re back to the good news section: lots of wrong guesses drives the jackpot up! Yaay! But if the jackpot goes up $500 each time, does that mean they’re only going to play two or three times per day? Like once per show – maybe between 7-9am, 11-2pm, 4-7pm? I don’t think we can count on anything this time around!
What we CAN count on, however, is being sucked in and driven mad by some strange little sound. Their ZFX teaser video on Instagram (also posted on Facebook but I don’t know how to copy the link for it 🙄) showed a bunch of previous sounds (pouring chips into a bowl, closing a Keurig machine lid, snapping in a seatbelt) but also showed some which I don’t ever remember hearing (closing a microwave, opening a door, biting an apple.)
Tune in if you can. I will be listening for sure. I’ll have a recording by Tuesday but it’ll be shite. But shite is better than nothing so if you need it, let me know.
Stay alert, ZFX Fam!