Back in February I posted my Top Ten Social Media Cartoonists list for the year. While cartoonists are less likely to take on the topic of social media, there are a few established cartoonists as well as some new writers and illustrators who find humor in a lot of social networking issues that consume so much of our waking hours. To my TOP TEN, I add the following.
Scott Adams & DilbertDilbert, one of the first cartoon strips to devote itself to 'workplace humor' has long been a favorite of comic-lovers the world over. It's originator Scott Adams is not only a cartoonist but also the author of several nonfiction works of satire. His Dilbert series came to national prominence during the corporate downsizing period of the 1990s and has grown in popularity ever since.
Focused on the zeitgeist of white-collar workers in the modern-day workplace, it was only a matter of time before Adams decided to paint the social media milieu with his hilarious caustic brush. Having already taken on Twitter and Facebook in his strips, one of his most recent targets focused on the newly created position of 'Social Media Manager' that many companies have added to their staffs.
The rules of social media are changing every day in the workplace, so I am sure that Adams will be reapproaching this same topic in the weeks and months ahead. Stay tuned.
'FACEBUCKS & DUMB F*CKS' GRAPHIC NOVEL
The Graphic Novels is a comic format in which writers and illustrators are able to create a fictional illustrative narrative that's usually lengthier than comic books but shorter than a full-blown novel. While crossing a lot of genres from adventure, super-heroes, manga, romance, horror, science-fiction and politics, graphic novels has yet to focus on social media.
Knowing this void existed, I took it upon myself to add social media to the mix. After all, if Facebook was able to amass a user-base of 500+ million, this space warranted as much attention as some of the other pressing issues of the day.
Debuting in December, a Facebook satire will be available as a graphic novel. With so much written and debated as to what Facebook is doing to change our lives, "Facebucks & Dumb F*cks" underscores how a major social network grew into a monolithic financial enterprise under the leadership of one individual who knew how to attract a crowd.
The title lampoons both Facebook's monetization scheme and the label Mark Zuckerberg foolishly used to describe his blind followers, at the onset of developing the network in his dorm room at Harvard.
Along the way, the satire not only lampoons Facebook, it also touches on several of the other Internet giants that dominate a lot of the digital online landscape.
The climax and denouement of the story goes beyond all of the urban legends that presently exist about Facebook and will soon be exposed in the upcoming movie, The Social Network. It's our take on where the fictional Z-Man is leading his flock and our predictions as to what the largest social network in the land might look like in ten years, hence. Pre-orders for the book are available at FifoBooks, and information about the social media casting call underway for those interested in actually becoming an illustrated comic character in the book can be found at their Web site.
Randy GlasbergenRandy Glasbergen, a widely popular cartoonist has touched on all kinds of human relationship topics over the years and is probably best known for his comic panel "The Better Half" syndicated by King Features. Appearing seven days a week in print and online newspapers around the world, Glasbergen has been writing and drawing his series since 1982.
Of recent date, Glasbergen has been finding humor in Facebook, MySpace, Twitter ,YouTube and LinkedIn, in addition to the social media outlets experienced in blogging, and online chatting. In this toon, he contemplates how the human race might be evolving to accommodate one of new millennium's favorite past-times - texting!
To date, according to his Web site, Glasbergen offers more than 3000 cartoons about social networking and makes them available for folks who want to use them for newsletters, presentations and/or other projects, at "budget-friendly" rates. For those interested, you can email Randy at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out a request form at his Web site.
Globally, social media has reached the same level of discourse as politics in today's world of instant gratification and real-time media communication. As an ecosystem, it touches us more than many of us care to admit to. In a recent post, titled "Social Media Game Beats Out Facebook & Google As Top Online Destination?" - studies have found that the average time social game players collectively spend on one game alone tallies 70 million hours per week. With this much time devoted to social media, is it any wonder that cartoonists and writers are finding so much to laugh about?