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Friday, October 30, 2015
Humorless MRC Writer Complains About 'Satire Smear'
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Katie Yoder finds absolutely no humor, it seems, in anything even tangentally related to abortion. Yoder grumps in an Oct. 16 NewsBusters post:

Sometimes things aren’t as funny as they seem.

ClickHole, a satirical site owned by the Onion, joked in an Oct. 13 piece that “Dunkin’ Donuts Has Just Announced That It Will Perform One Abortion.” To support a woman’s “right to choose,” the chain would offer a “complimentary abortion” at one of their locations. While media outlets readily shared the piece, Dunkin’ Donuts and business site Entrepreneur responded to the claim seriously.

Owned by the Onion, the year-old site, “strive[s] to make sure that all of our content panders to and misleads our readers just enough to make it go viral.”

The site attempted to do just that on Monday – by joking about abortion and smearing a business in the process.

Yoder seems to miss that the entire point of the ClickHole satire was to mock the idea of corporate involvement in political causes, or that ClickHole itself is a parody of the clickbait-y BuzzFeed style.

Yoder also makes sure we know that "Dunkin’ Donuts is neutral on life issues." Well, duh, that's part of the joke -- there's no reason for Dunkin' Donuts to get involved in the issue, let alone perform an abortion in one of its stores, which should have been a pretty obvious sign that this was satire. Still, she fretted that "Some Twitter users appeared to take the story seriously," again ignoring that the story is absurd on its face, hence its existence as a satire.

But what's Yoder's complaint about "smearing a business," which she identifies in the headline as a "Satire Smear"? Including a real-life business (or person) in a satirical pice is a "smear"? Perhaps someone should remind Yoder that her employer engages in a "satire smear" on a regular basis called "NewsBusted" (a name the MRC totally stole from us).

The main difference between the two is that Clickhole has actual humor. But Yoder and "NewsBusted" could take a few lessons in funny from professionals.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:22 AM EDT

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