NewsBiscuit is a British satirical news website. It was founded in September 2006 to create a new outlet for British humour on the internet by a group consisting mainly of comedy writers including John O'Farrell.
Each day the site publishes one main 'front page' article and two shorter 'News in Brief' articles with a headline ticker. All articles are available free-to-view in its archives. The site also develops new writing using a submissions board where readers can rate each other's material and suggest rewrites or edits. These user submissions are rated by other subscribers and the most popular are reworked for the article boards. Several teams of contributors, such as Team Biscuit, The Hit Squad as well as Smudge and Des, have developed since the site's launch writing co-operatively online to produce articles for the site. Rewriting and alternative punch lines are also encouraged on the site's submissions board.
The articles and features range from satirical takes on current affairs, to various silly and bizarre ideas. On its LaughLines blog, the New York Times declared that NewsBiscuit was the British version of the Onion.
There are 14 main boards:
- Isle of Wight News
- UK News
- World News
Writer of the Month
Introduced in October 2008, the Writer of the Month (WOM) award recognises the most successful and prolific writer each month, mainly based on the number of submissions that have been used as the ‘front page’ story but also taking into account News in Brief and also ticker subs used. WOM winners sometimes edit the News In Brief section of the site.
The first winner was nealdoran, and jp1885 (Jon Price) was the first to win the award twice. The full list of winners is:
- Oct 08 – nealdoran (Neal Doran)
- Nov 08 – ianslat (Ian Slatter)
- Dec 08 – StoopyDeGunt
- Jan 09 – Genghis Cohen
- Feb 09 – Skylarking (Ben Cohen)
- Mar 09 – jp1885 (Jon Price)
- Apr 09 – roybland (Roy Bland)
- May 9 – jp1885
- Jun 09 – The Paper Ostrich (Paul Peros)
- Jul 09 – Mary Evans (Mary Evans)
- Aug 09 – Mary Evans
- Sep 09 – Oxbridge (Andrew Warmington)
- Oct 09 – nealdoran
- Nov 09 – Mary Evans
- Dec 09 – darkbill (Ellie Gale)
- Jan 10 – darkbill
- Feb 10 – Des Custard
- Mar 10 – Ludicity (Carl Maxim)
- Apr 10 – Genghis Cohen
- May 10 – Genghis Cohen
- Jun 10 – darkbill
- Jul 10 – Ludicity
- Aug 10 – Ludicity
- Sep 10 - lamaga
- Oct 10 - ianslat
- Nov 10 - Oxbridge
- Dec 10 - Golgo13 (Stephen Noonan)
- Jan 11 - Ludicity
- Feb 11 - Stan Laurel (aka Ian Saunders)
- Mar 11 - Des & Stan (Des Custard & Stan Laurel)
- Aug 2013 Wrenfoe
- Sep 2013 Bonjonelson
- Oct 2013 TobiasBV
- Nov 2013 Ludicity
- Dec 2013 Jamsieoconnor
- Jan 2014 Oxbridge
A selection of writing contributors in 2013
sweary nan, Tripod, Wrenfoe, NeverDeliberatelyAmusing, John Wiltshire, The All New Jeni B, Landfill, nickb, Flipper23, ronseal,wendyeden23, FOAD, Smart Alex, Coco, Lens Cap, shorry30, Metro, godly1966, medici2471, Al OPecia, apepper, Ludicity, Titus, LindyM, davetwojackets, FlashArry, Squudge, virtuallywill, blacklesbianandproudofit, AReader, topfotogmw, Stan Laurel, Dumbnews, suzan, A Friend of Arthur,Paddy Berzinski, Ref Minor, Jesus H, blokefromstoke, Custard Cream, MADJEZ, sydalg, Bonjonelson, Jamsieoconnor, Oxbridge, TobiasBV....
A number of writers who cut their teeth on NewsBiscuit have gone on to have novels published.
In June 2008 the BBC recorded a "NewsBiscuit" pilot for transmission on BBC Radio 4 later in the year, and this may be followed by a series. It starred John O'Farrell as the host of fictional radio station NewsBiscuit Dot.Com, and Anna Crilly as its co-presenter. It was, according to O'Farrell, an opportunity for new writers and actors to show their talent.
Also in 2008 a book featuring many of the stories featured on the website was produced, called Isle of Wight to Get Ceefax: And Other Groundbreaking Stories from Newsbiscuit.
- "The world of wiki-comedy". BBC News. 2007-09-20. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
- "Mail to give away 'Big Issue Lite' to undercut homeless". NewsBiscuit. 2007-11-08. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
- "Charity launches 'Guide Dogs for the Late'". NewsBiscuit. 2006-09-25. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
- "Dolphins 'stop smiling the moment our back is turned'". NewsBiscuit. 2006-10-05. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
- "Spanish child demands normal bedtime". New York Times. 2007-10-19. Retrieved 2010-09-23.