Is ‘The Onion’ having second thoughts?

Some big news from The Onion today. They e-mailed me a press release stating that in New York, one of their eight markets, they will switch to a real-news format starting Nov. 9. The switch is “an experiment, which if successful will result in the gradual transition of all eight regional publications and the Web site to a real-news format.” The reason? Overwhelming competition in the fake news category. “Let’s face it, everybody in America who wants a laugh at the expense of the president or one of his cronies or at just about any cultural phenomenon of the moment turns to Jon Stewart and The Daily Show,” says editor in chief Scott Dikkers. “Or The Colbert Report. Both programs are kicking ass big time and have put a major crimp in both our circulation and average readership.” Dikkers goes on to explain that circ numbers are misleading because many people use the paper to “cover their heads when it’s raining or to clean up after their dogs.” Hold on a minute. Sorry about that. I’m reading from the fake news release. The real big news from The Onion: They’re expanding to Austin. Oh.

—Posted by Steve McClellan