3.11.2010

Joe + AOLNews = Probably Awesome... Maybe

So, I'm sure just the headline alone brought a groan and possibly a "Wait, WHAT?" But yes, I'm now a contributor for AOLNews.

Why: Well, the biggest thing is that AOL has a MASSIVE audience, and the type of writing I'll be doing is right up my alley: if you like articles I've done like The Insane Energy Drink Experiment or How To Actually Get A Decent Tattoo or How to Actually Win A Fist Fight, you'll likely love what I'm going to be doing with AOLNews. I'm working on a regular column which will basically put me in the path of the most insane, disastrous things happening in our society right now, using me as an example to others how things like The Taco Bell Diet and Acai Berries might not actually be smart things to build your life around.

Why AOL: It might seem a bit weird for someone like me to be working with something like AOL. But there's a few things going on over there that have me really encouraged. AOL is completely revamping the brand and their efforts are moving toward becoming a fully-fledged, original news and content group. And if you look at their team page, they've got some HUGE talent signing on. Ex-Google president Tim Armstrong is running the place, and he's no dummy. They've jettisoned the wire-based news they used to offer in favor of completely original stuff.

It seems like they're really taking the rebranding and new direction seriously. Instead of just talking about a new direction while doing the same old crap, they're seriously moving a completely different way - and they're doing so smartly, by experimentation and testing, keeping what's working and abandoning the failing bits.

Why it is probably awesome, maybe: Okay, look at that team page I linked above. Pulitzer prize winners. Writers from ABC, NBC, FOX, AP, Reuters... And then, the tattooed dork who got puked on during his first sexual experience and who set fire to a Hooters. Yeah... Not the same league. Not even the same sport, actually. But I'm going to do my best to make you guys laugh. I'm not out to reboot the world of journalism with some zany, madcap version of writing that'll set the world alight and make me famous. I just want to make some funny things that people have the opportunity to read, and this seems like a great opportunity to do that. I hope you agree.

Anyway, I just thought I'd share this with you guys. And no, I won't be blogging less here (despite the last, like, two weeks being a complete wasteland here - more on that tomorrow). If anything, I'll be putting up a LOT more stuff here, as there'll inevitably be stuff I pitch to my editors that won't make the cut - and I won't let it just die a soft death.

But yeah, that just happened.