Drew Curtis

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Drew Curtis
Drew Curtis 2007.jpg
Alma materLuther College
OccupationPublisher and writer
Years active1993–present
Known forFounder of Fark.com
Partner(s)Heather Curtis

Drew Curtis (born February 7, 1973) is the founder and an administrator of Fark.com, an Internet news aggregator. He is also the author of It's Not News, It's FARK: How Mass Media Tries to Pass off Crap as News in May 2007. He is a guest on WOCM's morning show The Rude Awakening Show every Tuesday. Curtis was the Independent Gubernatorial candidate for Governor of Kentucky in 2015 but lost to the Republican Nominee Matt Bevin.


Fark began in 1993 when Curtis was in England, sending links back to his friends.[1] Curtis registered Fark.com in 1997 but did not begin posting links on the site until 1999.[2][3] The first story on Fark was a news article about a fighter pilot who crashed while attempting to expose his buttocks to another fighter pilot.[4] Since then, the site has become one of the most popular link dump sites on the internet[2] with nearly 50 million pageviews a month.[1] As of 2006, the site was getting over 2,000 link submissions every day.[5] It was the first indie blog to earn one million dollars a year in profit[1] and its classifieds section alone generates as much as $40,000 per year.[6]

Although Fark is a million-dollar business, Curtis takes a yearly salary of $60,000. The rest of the money goes to the site's legal 'war chest' and to pay other expenses.[6]

Under Curtis, Fark has purposely shied away from the Web 2.0 mantra of total user control.[5]

I don't care what anyone says, the masses are morons. You can't count on them to pick good stuff. Just check out Network TV to see what the masses want for entertainment. It all sucks. Don't even get me started on how they vote for elected officials. There's certainly a place for that kind of thing but it's not on Fark.[5]

According to Curtis, Web 3.0 will be "something called Good Editing."[5] Speaking at a media conference in Washington, DC hosted by the Poynter Institute, Curtis stated, "The 'wisdom of the crowds' is the most ridiculous statement I've heard in my life. Crowds are dumb. It takes people to move crowds in the right direction, crowds by themselves just stand around and mutter."[7]

In 2006, Curtis was featured on the cover of Business 2.0 magazine as the feature in a story about successful websites.[1] Lexington Weekly named him one of their businessmen under 40 to watch.[2]

On November 28, 2007, Curtis filed an application to trademark the phrase "not safe for work" a common phrase on Fark.com.[8] His application was denied.

It's Not News, It's FARK[edit]

Curtis published his first book, It's Not News, It's FARK: How Mass Media Tries to Pass off Crap as News in May 2007.[9] It soon became a bestseller. An in-depth analysis of the state of modern media, It's Not News, It's Fark slams news organizations for running smaller versions of his not-real-news. In his review of the book, Farhad Manjoo of Salon.com said that "[Curtis] even seems to go after the audience – his audience – for indulging in [not-real-news] Curtis seems to want us to be repulsed by them instead."[10]

Curtis's book peaked at #12 on Amazon.com's non-fiction bestseller list. Media critic Jack Shafer noted that despite the book's success, it received "scant attention" from mainstream media outlets.[11] The book was later released in paperback.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Curtis graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa in 1995.[13] From 1996 to 2002, he owned and operated DCR.NET, an ISP based in Frankfort, Kentucky.[14] He is a graduate of the Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA program, a joint venture of New York's Columbia University and the University of California at Berkeley.[15] Curtis lives in the suburbs of Lexington, Kentucky with his wife, Heather, and children, Chance, Storm, and Sierra.[6][16]

Gubernatorial campaign[edit]

Curtis announced his candidacy on January 23, 2015, for the 2015 election for the Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.[17] The platform revolved around a "Citizen Candidate" philosophy of common sense and data-driven decisions, no experiments, leaving people alone, having no party alignment, and taking special-interest money out of the political process. The stated hope was to build a blueprint for regular, real people in all 50 states/commonwealths to be able to create constructive disruptions in a broken system, in order to run competitively in elections.[18] With his wife Heather as his running mate, Curtis faced the Republican Party nominee, businessman Matt Bevin, and the Democratic Party nominee, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway, in the November 3 general election. In the election held on November 3, 2015, Curtis lost the election to Bevin, receiving 35,629 total votes, or 3.7%.[19]

State Auditor campaign[edit]

In January 2019, Curtis filed to run as a Democrat for the post of State Auditor for Kentucky.[20] Faced with a primary against three other Democrats,[21] he withdrew on April 11, 2019, citing "other commitments". Due to his late withdrawal, Curtis' name remained on the primary ballot, but votes in his favor were not counted.[22] The primary was subsequently won by Democratic candidate Sheri Donahue,[23] who lost by a 14.62% margin in the general election to incumbent Republican Mike Harmon.[24]


  1. ^ a b c d Sloan, Paul; Kaihla, Paul (2010). "Blogging for big bucks" (CNN News). CNNMoney.com. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  2. ^ a b c Silcoff, Mireille. "LYPA Rising Stars". Lexington Weekly. Archived from the original on November 13, 2010. Retrieved June 6, 2008.
  3. ^ Curtis, Drew (June 2007). It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap as News. New York City: Penguin Group (USA), Inc. p. 278. ISBN 978-1-59240-291-5. Retrieved January 14, 2010.
  4. ^ "Panel of Web Community Founders: Utter Defiance of the "Venture Capital" Model". guykawasaki.com. February 22, 2007. Archived from the original (Online video) on May 25, 2009. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  5. ^ a b c d "Media Orchard Interviews Drew Curtis of Fark.com". ideagrove.com. July 14, 2006. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  6. ^ a b c "Fark.com: Making Money Off of Goofy News". NPR. May 7, 2007. Retrieved June 6, 2008.
  7. ^ Nagesh, Gautham (June 29, 2010). "Fark creator says wisdom of crowds is overrated". The Hill. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
  8. ^ "Not safe for work". trademork.com. July 12, 2007. Archived from the original on December 13, 2007. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  9. ^ "It's Not News, It's Fark (Kindle Edition)". Amazon. 2010. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  10. ^ Manjoo, Farhad (June 26, 2007). "News you can abuse". Salon.com. Archived from the original on February 1, 2013. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  11. ^ Shafer, Jack (October 4, 2007). "Fark Founder Flattens Fourth Estate". Slate.com. Retrieved June 6, 2008. "For all its insight, Curtis' book has gotten scant attention from the mainstream press."
  12. ^ Curtis, Drew (2010). It's Not News, It's Fark (Paperback ed.). ISBN 978-1592403660.
  13. ^ "Drew Curtis '95, Fark.com creator, to speak on campus Oct. 7". Luther College. Archived from the original on December 10, 2012. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  14. ^ Hawkins, John (2010). "An Interview With Fark's Drew Curtis". rightwingnews.com. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
  15. ^ Eblen, Tom (February 13, 2012). "Fark.com founder planning his next steps". The Bluegrass and Beyond (Lexington Herald Leader). Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  16. ^ Curtis, Drew (May 11, 2012). "Personal communication from Drew Curtis via Fark.com discussion boards". Retrieved May 11, 2012.
  17. ^ "Fark.com founder Drew Curtis announces bid for Kentucky governor". FoxNews.com. January 26, 2015.
  18. ^ "Drew & Heather Curtis: Citizen Candidates". Archived from the original on July 21, 2010. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  19. ^ "Interactive: Ky. Governor election results by county". Lexington Herald-Leader. November 3, 2015. Retrieved March 22, 2017.
  20. ^ "31 file for statewide office in Kentucky ahead of deadline". Associated Press. January 29, 2019.
  21. ^ "A full list of candidates for statewide offices in 2019".
  22. ^ "Kentucky race for auditor draws 3 Democrats against GOP incumbent | Lexington Herald Leader". Archived from the original on June 11, 2019.
  23. ^ "Sheri Donahue wins Democratic nomination for Kentucky auditor". www.wkyt.com.
  24. ^ "Kentucky Auditor election, 2019". Ballotpedia.

External links[edit]