TheOatmeal is a great web comic featuring funny birthday cards, wacky bear sex, and other merriment. It’s drawn by Matthew Inman and is great. Now, however, it’s the target of a decidedly odd – and funny – slander lawsuit.
Sadly the post is up and down right now but the gist is that Inman posted slanderous comments about FunnyJunk, a website dealing in funny junk. The letter begins:
The most important thing to understand, however, is that TheOatmeal’s posts calling out FunnyJunk rank just below FunnyJunk itself on Google, for reasons of quality and value. The lawyer is angry that that is happening. What’s more, the lawyer also believes that the text hidden in the HTML source of every page on TheOatmeal is a secret threat against FunnyJunk.
I suspect it isn’t.
Inman, in turn, found hundreds of examples of TheOatmeal content hosted on FunnyJunk. FunnyJunk quickly took it all down and argued that it never existed. This argument, whether true or not, can be easily confirmed by viewing cached data showing that TheOatmeal content existed unmolested on FunnyJunk as late as May 23, 2012.
That’s all well and good, but here’s the money shot:
Bang. Lawyer headshot – that whiffs right past Inman’s ear and into the forest behind him. In the end, these kind of hilarious lawsuits are wildly fun to watch and it’s clear that Inman isn’t cowed. In fact, he’s offering to collect $20,000, take a photo of the money (alongside the an image of the lawyer’s mother having sex with a bear), and then donate it to the National Wildlife Federation and the American Cancer Society.
If you want to help out you can donate to BearLove Good. Cancer Bad., the charity Inman created to stick it to the law. Reddit advises updating your hosts file to reroute funnyjunk.com traffic into oblivion on your own computer – you know, just in case someone tried to head over there.
Remember, folks: crazy lawsuits based on false premises, bad understanding of SEO, and general pissiness never pay.