The Huffington Post called it “The Video The Internet Deserves”.
You might know it by now as This Stick Of Butter Is Left Out At Room Temperature; You Won’t Believe What Happens Next. It’s a recent post by ClickHole, the brilliant clickbait news parody site set up by the people behind The Onion.
Sick of skewering the news, the Onion team turned their hand to skewering Not News; sites that thrive on viral posts and lists such as UpWorthy and Buzzfeed.
They’ve already shared priceless nuggets such as 10 Hilarious Chairs That Think They’re People, Can Somebody Tell Me What Monsanto Is So I Can Hate It? and Woman Takes One Photo Of Herself Every Day For A Week.
ClickHole’s been live for a couple of weeks now. Associate editor Daniel Kibblesmith – also the genius behind the Garfbert comic strip – told The Daily Dot that clickbait sites offered a natural alternative for the Onion team to set up a separate site.
…it’s certainly not replacing the Onion or the Onion News Network any more than the Huffington Post has replaced the New York Times.
Kibblesmith had this to say about the plague levels of manipulative headlines which end with various forms of “You Won’t Believe What Happens Next”:
When you are that manipulating, it could be argued that you’re compensating for the hollowness of your content.
Even calling it content instead of news or articles shows how far we are down the path of accepting this as some kind of replacement for journalism. Which I think everybody agrees is disappointing.
That’s one of the reasons that the response to Clickhole has been so positive. Immediately upon announcing it, there was this sort of shared catharsis where I think people realized that a voice that they trusted in the Onion was going to finally openly acknowledge that these things have become something of a plague.
The Stick Of Butter video is almost the end game in making that point. It runs for three hours, but the most damning statistic is the view count – currently in excess of 585,000 views.
Go on, add yours to the count:
But if you haven’t got three hours to spare, we took the natural course of action for you:
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