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The Onion is the source for an interesting and hilarious blend of news, satire and editorials that satirize current events, politics, pop culture, and more.
The Onion's articles cover current events, both real and fictional, parodying the tone and format of traditional news organizations with stories, editorials, and man-on-the-street interviews using a traditional news website layout and an editorial voice modeled after that of the Associated Press. The publication's humor often depends on presenting mundane, everyday events as newsworthy, surreal, or alarming, such as "Rotation Of Earth Plunges Entire North American Continent Into Darkness".
In the spring of 1996, Ben Karlin and Dikkers collaborated with Robert Smigel and Dana Carvey to create four short Onion news segments for The Dana Carvey Show. Smigel said that after being introduced to The Onion by Bob Odenkirk a year earlier, "it jumped out at me as something completely original and great, and I really wanted to use it on the show". Although four fake news segments anchored by Stephen Colbert were recorded, only one of the segments actually aired. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
On January 27, 1998, MTV premiered Virtual Bill, a collaboration between writers of The Onion and 3-D character studio Protozoa. The titular "Virtual Bill" character was a quasi-realistic CGI version of Bill Clinton created by studio Protozoa who introduced music videos and told jokes written by the staff of The Onion. The voice of Virtual Bill was provided by then editor Dikkers. After the initial premiere, Virtual Bill returned to MTV on December 17, 1998, with another TV special and an interactive web special produced by Pulse that ported the 3D data into a web compatible format using Pulse's proprietary plug-in. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
In August 2011, The Onion's website began testing a paywall model, requiring a $2.95 monthly/$29.95 annual charge from non-U.S. visitors who wish to read more than about five stories within 30 days. "We are testing a meter internationally as readers in those markets are already used to paying directly for some (other) content, particularly in the UK where we have many readers", said the company's CTO Michael Greer. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
founding editor Scott Dikkers returned to the publication in light of the Chicago move stating that he hopes to find a "younger and hungrier" pool of talent in Chicago than what was available in New York City. "The Onion is obviously always going to draw talent from wherever it is", Dikkers said. "In Madison, people used to just come in off the street [...] and we'd give them a shot. The Onion has always thrived on the youngest, greenest people." (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
"American Voices" (formerly called "What Do You Think?"), a mock vox populi survey on a topical current event. There are three respondents—down from the original six—for each topic, who appear to represent a diverse selection of demographics. Although their names and professions change each time they are used, photos of the same people are almost always used, with one of them often described as a systems analyst. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
"Harry Potter Books Spark Rise in Satanism Among Children": Beginning in the year 2000, an article on Harry Potter inciting children to practice witchcraft was the subject of a widely forwarded email which repeated the quotes attributed to children in the article. Columnist Ellen Makkai and others who believe the Harry Potter books "recruit" children to Satanism have also been taken in by the article, using quotes directly from it to support their claims. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
Most researchers agree the onion has been cultivated for 5000 years or more. Since onions grew wild in various regions, they were probably consumed for thousands of years and domesticated simultaneously all over the world. Onions may be one of the earliest cultivated crops because they were less perishable than other foods of the time, were transportable, were easy to grow, and could be grown in a variety of soils and climates. In addition, the onion was useful for sustaining human life. Onions prevented thirst and could be dried and preserved for later consumption when food might be scarce. While the place and time of the onion’s origin is still a mystery, many documents from very early times describe its importance as a food and its use in art, medicine, and mummification. (Source: www.onions-usa.org)
Onions are among the world’s oldest cultivated plants. They were probably known in India, China, and the Middle East before recorded history. Ancient Egyptians regarded the spherical bulb as a symbol of the universe, and its name is probably derived from the Latin unus, meaning “one.” The Romans introduced the onion to Britain and, in the New World, Native Americans added a highly pungent wild onion to their stews. Curative powers have been attributed to onions throughout the centuries; they have been used in folk medicine for such varied ailments as colds, earaches, laryngitis, animal bites, burns, and warts. (Source: www.britannica.com)
On September 27, 2001, The Onion debuted its New York City print edition with an issue focused on the September 11 attacks. The popularity, and critical praise, of the issue resulted in The Onion's website's online traffic nearly doubling in the weeks following the attacks.
In September 2011, it was announced that The Onion would move its entire editorial operation to Chicago by the summer of 2012. The news of the move left many of the writers—who moved with the publication from Madison to New York City in 2000—"blindsided", putting them in a position to decide whether to uproot themselves from New York City and follow the publication to Chicago, which was already home to the company's corporate headquarters. At a comedy show on September 27, 2011, then editor Joe Randazzo announced that he would not be joining the staff in Chicago. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)
On February 5, 2018, The Onion published its first podcast, titled A Very Fatal Murder. It was released in six parts and parodies other true crime podcasts such as Serial and My Favorite Murder. The story follows Onion Public Radio reporter David Pascall (voiced by David Sidorov) as he tries to investigate the murder of a 17-year-old girl named Hayley Price in the fictional town of Bluff Springs, Nebraska. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)