The Onion

Website review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
The Onion Website Poster Image
Mock news articles meant for a mature audience.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 14+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this website.

Educational Value

Kids can learn how some publications write in a specific voice (in this case, sarcasm), may find out about current events, topics. Written content offers reading practice; articles have same structure as legit news stories, so they can serve as a starting point to discuss journalism, news writing. Video clips can be used to illustrate ways to tell a story using images.

Positive Messages

Although site's news articles are more funny than factual, format may help show kids it's important to be informed about current events, newsworthy subjects. 

Violence
Sex

A video features illustrations of two people having sex, some articles poke fun at amount of sex Americans have, safe sex, other topics.

Language

Some headlines, articles include words like "f--k," "s--t."

 

Consumerism

Ads are on homepage, other pages; videos preceded by ads, companies sponsor some content. An online store section also sells branded merchandise.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Articles mention -- mostly to poke fun at, occasionally to make light of -- drinking, being drunk, drug use, smoking.

 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Onion is a satirical news site focused on current events. While there's a tongue-in-cheek approach to subjects ranging from heroin and marijuana use to talking to your child about sex, there's also a degree of mature content included with pieces, like profanity in headlines or videos with some sexual illustrations. As a result, many parents could feel that some content isn't appropriate for younger kids. Kids can also be exposed to a large number of ads before videos, company sponsored content, and a store promoting Onion-branded gear.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Teen, 13 years old Written byLeondaboss June 11, 2017

incredibly funny!!!

these articles are incredibly funny and are some of the best satire i know of.although there is references to drugs,sex , swearing and world events i think bec... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byCooltiger37 July 5, 2018

Pure pornography

I thought it would be fun to start keeping up with this website for the mock news articles, but within a couple days of subscribing to their newsletter, I notic... Continue reading

What's it about?

THE ONION features articles on politics, entertainment, sports, and other subjects, written in the sardonic tone the print newspaper became famous for. It also hosts videos, editorial cartoons, commentary and opinion pieces, and sarcastic horoscopes. Video content ranges from quick jokes paired with still images to clips from The Onion's faux news network and sponsored videos from companies like car2go. All of the articles The Onion has published since 1996 are available on the site.

Is it any good?

Readers will enjoy scrolling through this humorous website's treasure trove of humorous articles, although its meant for a mature audience. With headlines that mock public figures, suggest mutant creatures are living in theme park rides, and poke fun at common behaviors, there's plenty to draw them in and keep them coming back for more in the future. The site doesn't post violent photos, or anything sexual that's not for laughs; that said, parents may still not be comfortable with kids seeing all of its content -- whether it's in jest or not -- particularly if their children are young.

Supervising the content kids click on wouldn't be a bad idea; parents won't have to worry, though, that unescorted kids will end up on YouTube or another site with free-for-all content because The Onion's videos are hosted on its site and aren't linked to an exterior page. In addition, The Onion's site doesn't offer chat capabilities or the chance to create a profile and post comments, removing the risk kids will talk to people they don't know.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about news coverage. How does news coverage compares to the articles on the site? Do they sound different? What kind of information varies?

  • Do you know how to tell the difference between a legitimate information source and a site like this that's just for fun -- or a resource that can't be substantiated?

Website details

For kids who love humor

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