FBLA Exclusive Interview With This is Why You’re Fat Co-Founder

In-N-Out Animal Style French Fries

We’re obsessed with ThisisWhyYoureFat.com. We are. It’s like a watching a deep-fried bacon-infused lava lamp – mesmerizing.

Jessica Amason, Lead Blogger for AOL’s Urlesque.com and co-founder of the site ThisisWhyYoureFat.com sat down with us for a little Q&A.

FBLA:Is this satire or food porn?

JA:It’s both really. Some of these items are horrifying, some are enticing and some (the best ones) have a little of both. The fact that these gnarly items are given the “food porn” treatment, i.e. simple design, image-heavy with little text, is a bit silly. We often call what we do: “junk-food porn.”

FBLA: When does the book come out?

JA: This book comes out October 27 and we will be having a big release event as well (details to come….). The book is being published by HarperStudio and we’re pleased to be in good company — on the same imprint as our friend and fellow web-head, Gary Vaynerchuck.

FBLA: What foods are you considering for the release party? We went to a party for a book about a 30-day cleanse, we worried about the hors d’oeuvres…just saying.

JA: Yikes! haha…..well we can’t reveal too many details at this point, but yes, we will definitely have featured items from the site available at the release party. There will also be a number of contributors in attendance because, much like the site, this book is about highlighting this trend and the community behind it — the junkfood lovers,haters and creators — that have made This is Why You’re Fat what it is.

FBLA: Is it just you maintaining Thisiswhyyourefat? Do you get a lot of submissions?

JA: Yes, my boyfriend/partner and I are a 2-person operation. We receive thousands of submissions both via the submission page and via email, and on occasion Richard and I will hunt down our own. It is certainly a big job to maintain and edit so many items for the site, but the fact that the site’s content is user-submitted makes all the difference. Our fans are great and continue to impress us with suggestions, great finds and inventive creations.

FBLA: Is this political (do you think you’ll be grouped with Michael Pollan on Amazon.com) or whimsical?

JA: We get this question a lot actually — about what we’re trying to “say” with the site.
Really, the reason the site has a rather bare-bones look in terms of design and text is that we wanted the content to speak for itself. This is Why You’re Fat is not message-driven (admittedly the title is a bit cheeky), but we are simply highlighting a web trend that was already in existence.

We have been covered in Sports Illustrated and fitness publications with the angle that our site is a guide for what not to do. PETA-UK is a big fan because they see the site as a warning against the consumption of animal products. Comedy Central and Late Night With Jimmy Fallon see it as humor. And in truth, all of these elements are present in the site and its content.

We’ll gladly hand over the politicking to Pollan (and, it should be mentioned, a high five for that killer cover design!).

FBLA: You dont allow comments on Thisiswhyyourefat. How’d you come to that decision?

JA: We wanted the site to be simple — much like food porn — to have the images be the focus.

FBLA: Favorite meal ever?

JA: Oh wow, this is a tough question….I’d have to say, I am a sucker for Vietnamese food and Georgia-style BBQ. Wait a minute, I may have just discovered a new concoction for our site!

FBLA: Coming up next for ThisisWhyYoureFat.com is a possible tv adaptation of the site/book’s concept. Neato. Good luck to you both of you!