Big Brother houseguests don’t just give up their privacy when they enter the house. They have to follow some other wild Big Brother rules, too or they could get in trouble. Producers can even expel them from the game for breaking them. Here are six rules to being on the reality show.
1. They can’t talk about splitting the prize money with other houseguests
At the end of every season, only one person takes home the prize money. But to make sure some of the money isn’t used for bribes, houseguests aren’t allowed to offer any of the prize money to jury members.
2. They must eat slop
Losing competitions on Big Brother could make you a Have-Not. Consequently, you must sleep in the Have-Not room, have cold showers, and you can eat only slop.
This typically makes houseguests miserable. Slop is basically steel-cut oats, and producers give houseguests a list of condiments they’re allowed to use to eat it.
3. Houseguests can’t sing other people’s songs
There isn’t a lot to do in the house to pass the time. The Head of Household gets music they asked for to listen to, but that’s the only source of music in the house.
Houseguests can’t sing existing songs to pass the time. This is mostly because songs are copyrighted, and it would cost money to play that on television. Producers tell houseguests to stop singing if they do. However, houseguests can get creative and create their own songs.
4. They aren’t allowed to hide behind the furniture
The whole point of Big Brother is that fans can watch the cast at almost any moment of every day. So if they could hide from cameras that would really ruin that.
Most of the furniture in the house is mounted to the floor so it can’t be moved, according to The Los Angeles Times. Cameras are also in two-way mirrors.
5. They must keep their microphones on
Producers also want fans to hear the houseguests at all times. So after they wake up they need to get microphones, and if anything is blocking the sound from the microphone, producers tell them to fix it.
There still have been some houseguests who chose to defy production. Chima Simone was expelled from Big Brother 11 for refusing to wear her microphone. She also threw a microphone into the pool.
6. Houseguests can’t have pens or paper
Houseguests are not allowed to bring electronics into the house, which is normal for reality shows. But producers also don’t allow them to have pens and paper. Sometimes houseguests use things like food or game pieces to keep notes on what’s happening in the game because of this rule.
So if the challenges and social game weren’t hard enough, these Big Brother rules might make it even harder to be in the house for houseguests. But it’s probably worth it given the winner gets a big prize at the end.