Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Dear France: You're Doing It Wrong

Anyone who runs a satire site knows that it is not exactly a road to riches. On the contrary, if you're in it for the money, then you're in the wrong business. Likewise, everyone knows that newspapers are dropping like flies as well, to the point where Congress is vaguely sort of thinking about whether to do anything about it. So is French satire site Bakchich doing the right thing by jumping from the internet to a newsstand near you (assuming you happen to live in France)?

The website is doing so because, to absolutely no one's surprise, the website can't turn a profit despite being a pretty major outfit, with all the bells and whistles a site can offer, a deep bench of sharp-witted writers, and a target audience that is much more receptive to satire as a legitimate form of public discourse than Americans. However, while there are several American humor sites that publish hard-copy versions (e.g. The Onion, Recoil Magazine, Derf, etc.) these all started out as regional real-life newspapers which branched out online. The valid business model came first, in other words.

Bakchich is at least getting some good publicity for the move, which may help. It's worth watching to see how things work out, and to learn whether, as Bakchich claims, "L'écrit sauvera l'écran".

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Friday, September 25, 2009

Hey, that's my job

It's bad enough that the world of politics has gotten so absurd, it's nearly impossible to satirize anymore. But now the politicians have gone too far: they're getting into the game themselves. (And we're not talking about a stiffly self-conscious stunt like Dubya hunting for WMDs under his sofa cushions.)

In this ad, a candidate for Lieutenant Governor in Virginia shows her incumbent opponent MIA. The voicemail from Sarah Palin is a nice touch, as is the chicken nesting in the fellow's outbox. But the ad tries a little too hard when one of the voicemails mentions the chicken as well. A true artist knows when to stop. When politicians figure out the art of subtlety, humorists everywhere may well be out of a job.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pardon our mess...

We're in the midst of an overhaul, so please don't be put off by any stray pixels or wildly unfinished design elements. We'll be up and running again by Monday.
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Monday, September 21, 2009

Six for ten!

The web is positively awash with humor. You can't turn around without bumping into a satire headline here and there - even CNN isn't immune. But even amidst this crowd, HumorFeed members stand out. In a (fairly) recent list of the 'top ten satire sites', no less than six are members of HumorFeed. (The rest are no-name sites like the Onion and such.) Kudos to the sites that make a difference in keeping the web from getting too serious!

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Satire pervades the web, seeping into mailboxes and mainstream news like a spilled cup of coffee. It stains and it won't go away.

The Bitter Cup is a collaborative blog for members of HumorFeed, a collaborative of satire and humor sites that has been making trouble since 2003.