No longer are we at the mercy of Dilbert, Marmaduke and that holier than thou Family Circus. [rssbreak] (If you want to improve Family Circus, check out the Nietzsche Family Circus which pairs a random Friedrich quote with a random Circus panel).
Thanks to the nice people at bitstrips.com, anyone can pump out quality (or mediocre) humour. You create an avatar, in a Nintendo Mii sort of way, and use all kinds of MS Paint style tools to manufacture hilarity.
The site debuted at SXSW four months ago and already has 75,000 comics archived.
Last Wednesday, creators Jacob "Ba" Blackstock and Jesse Brown (of CBC's sort-of defunct Search Engine glory) threw a party and award show at Levack Block highlighting some of the amazing stuff users have done.
And it was amazing.
Did I mention this is local talent? Yeah, it is.
Brown tells me he expects two kinds of users: social/office and hardcore. That's hardcore in the "I really must do this all the time" sense, not the porn kind.
It's also free, which also appeals to non-porn hardcore users. Brown says he figures once the user base swells enough, they'll sell out. He didn't say that, but it worked for MySpace, right?
Stepping away from "talent", briefly, here's something I whipped up on bitstrips.com earlier.
I challenge you to do better.
(Also, it turns out tech writer Ian Daffern is going to give you the nitty gritty on bitstrips.com in NOW's print version later this week. Look for it.)