Escapist Culture: Internet communities become ‘Kinda Funny’

By: Griffin Thenell Columnist

‘Kinda Funny’ creates a group all over the world connected by the internet.

The YouTube-based company “Kinda Funny’ has established a community all connected through the internet.

“Kinda Funny” started when founders Greg Miller, Nick Scarpino, Tim Gettys and Colin Moriarty left IGN to make their own content. Since leaving three years ago, they have moved into a studio, hired new people, joined the “Let’s Play” group and, most importantly, established a worldwide network of fans they call ‘best friends.’

“This community helped me get through a breakup, which could have ruined my life,” Josh Webber, KF community member, said. “I was in a really dark place, but the advice and support I got here pulled me through.”

The best friends are everywhere. Literally. There are best friends all around the globe, and they have been brought together by the gang at “Kinda Funny”. 

“This community and ‘Kinda Funny’ have made me a much more positive person,” Taylor Long, another best friend, said. “It has also kept me sane when I have anxiety flare-ups, with its positivity and support from everyone.”

There is a stigma about online friends. Arguments are made that it is not a true friendship if you do not meet up in person, but these people connect to each other without having to meet in person. Whether it’s running jokes about “our lord and savior Knack” or an inside joke from the content “Kinda Funny” makes, the best friends are always that—friends.

“We all go through life struggles, group struggles and such, but this can and will be a happy place… In real life, they all help me and provide happiness and support,” Jeffrey Vance, member of the “Kinda Funny” Facebook group, said.

The internet is a hub of negativity. Just take a look at YouTube comments if you don’t believe me. However, the “Kinda Funny” community is extremely different. Observing this community, I see a group based on positivity and understanding. They are all different and come from different backgrounds, but they are a group formed under a common good. They create a beacon in the darkness, if you will.

Once a year, this community gets together with the “Kinda Funny” live show in San Francisco. It has become a pilgrimage to fans. Not only is it a place for fans to see what new content “Kinda Funny” is making, but it is also a chance for everyone to gather and unite.

Last year at “Kinda Funny Live 3”, the community created its own events and meetups around San Francisco and got together by themselves with no help from the actual company. This community began focused on the content, then shifted gears to focus on each other and that is where I think they are unique.

Online communities like those around gaming news sites, IGN, focus on the content and even the subject matter, but the “Kinda Funny” community focuses on one another. If someone has a bad day or gets bad news, they cheer them up. They celebrate the successes, mourn losses and make fun of each other all over Facebook groups, Reddit and forums.

This community is truly something special.

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