Amusing Ourselves to Depth: Is The Onion our most intelligent newspaper?: "While other newspapers desperately add gardening sections, ask readers to share their favorite bratwurst recipes, or throw their staffers to ravenous packs of bloggers for online question-and-answer sessions, The Onion has focused on reporting the news. The fake news, sure, but still the news. It doesn’t ask readers to post their comments at the end of stories, allow them to rate stories on a scale of one to five, or encourage citizen-satire. It makes no effort to convince readers that it really does understand their needs and exists only to serve them. The Onion’s journalists concentrate on writing stories and then getting them out there in a variety of formats, and this relatively old-fashioned approach to newspapering has been tremendously successful." The article is based on the premises of the late media critic Neil Postman, especially from his book "Amusing Ourselves To Death: Public Discourse In The Age Of Show Business."
NewsFilterFilter: What Kind Of News Do People Really Want? A recent study by the Pew Research Center For The People & The Press analyzes 165 separate surveys of Americans' news preferences (conducted over a period of 20 years). One of the findings would have been obvious to most Mefites: "Polarizing social issues involving family, sexuality, patriotism and God engender the highest levels of attention." Crime, health and politics have consistently received mid-level attention. Tabloid and entertainment news (Paris and Britney, this means you), science and technology, and "foreign" news? Meh, not so much.
Are You Generic? "Giving Brand-America the finger since 2001." The folks at Are You Generic have a few basic demands: "natural, unprocessed foods; ad-free space; trustworthy news sources; a healthy body image; promotion of the independents; and the spread of knowledge." They're getting their message across by means of "culture jams." Their first target was Starbucks in 2002. Some more recent actions are listed here, including Confessions of a Generic Magazine. But they have stuff for sale, so some might argue that they're not that much different than those they mock. Either way, their site does have a great collection of international street art.