Everyone—or, at least, almost everyone
—knows that the "news" The Onion
posts every day is largely fictional. It’s satire.
However, until this week, the site’s unreality was limited to its content pages and didn’t reach into its job listings. That changed Thursday when The Onion
posted this ad
for an unpaid “listening intern,” whose job responsibilities would include:
4. Appearing deeply interested in what the speaker is saying
5. Remaining silent
The job lasts for one day and is intended to “comfort our staff by providing an attentive ear for hearing their thoughts and worries.”
Job qualifications include a “meek, obedient demeanor” and “functional ears and/or lip reading ability” but mainly, applicants are required to watch the pilot of the new Amazon streaming series "Onion News Empire" and rate it. The show is one of several new comedy pilots
that Amazon is testing. Amazon will decide which ones become full series based on customer reviews and survey results.
The job listing is a real listing on The Onion
’s SmartRecruiters page, found alongside ads looking for an IT manager and a front-end developer, but it’s pretty clearly a sly way to rack up Amazon reviews and make Onion News Empire a series.
Or maybe it’s not so clear. Quite a few commenters on a Mashable post
about the job listing—which didn’t mention the Amazon review requirement—either asked whether it was real, called it a “lame internship,” or inquired about how much it paid.
Matt Wilson is a staff writer for Ragan.com.