Aug 28, 2008, 07:28AM

Onion Going Local

The Onion, long standing king of ironic satire and underrated source of cultural commentary, is trying to muscle in on local web markets. The company has announced a new online service that will help users track nightlife and entertainment in their city. There are already plenty of locally themed websites that track restaurant reviews, cultural calendars, and other information, but many aren't very good and The Onion thinks they can do better.

Like online music stores and search engines, there seems to be an endless supply of city-focused entertainment sites that allow users to search for and review local restaurants, bars, clubs, and events. Despite this, there are few that are actually good, leaving many newcomers to the scene confident that they can create something better. One newcomer to the entertainment site scene isn't a newcomer to the web, however, lending it experience that could benefit it in the long run. Decider, recently launched in beta form for the Chicago market, is done by the folks behind "America's Finest News Source," The Onion.

What exactly motivated the satirical news site to launch its own local entertainment site is anyone's guess, especially when the competition is made up of the likes of Yelp (with its huge following, especially in Chicago), Citysearch, and Metromix; of those three, I am a devout Yelp follower. Even in its beta form, however, Decider offers an attractive and functional platform to find what you want easily, quickly, and in an aesthetically pleasing manner, which is more than what one could say about most of the competition.


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