Satire is usually meant to be funny. However, it often serves a greater purpose too, providing constructive social criticism, using wit to draw attention to both particular and wider issues in society.

In the digital age, The Onion is probably the most prevalent satirical publisher—it produces articles on international, national, and local news. Even though The Onion ceased publishing its print edition in 2013, it has survived online where the company has been operating since the spring of 1996.

Occasionally, the serious, straight-faced manner in which The Onion "reports" on non-existent events, happenings, and ideas has resulted in people mistakenly thinking the stories are real news.

In fact, this started happening so often, it even gave birth to a subreddit, collecting screenshots of these gullible folks' reactions. Continue scrolling and check out some of the top posts of r/AteTheOnion, which currently has over 509K members and has started featuring reactions to satire created outside of The Onion too.

#1

One Of The Many Reasons To Hate Sea World

One Of The Many Reasons To Hate Sea World

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Lúthien
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Honestly, if it were possible I think they would

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One of the moderators of the subreddit, TheCats_Bananas, thinks that satirical news is now as important as any other form of comedy. "News outlets have always favored tragic events over uplifting ones so in a way, I think satirical news helps people see the bright side. Or at the very least it makes them consider that there might be a bright side and not everything is as terrible as it is presented on the news," they told Bored Panda.

#2

Ate The Onion - Left The Cheetos

Ate The Onion - Left The Cheetos

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Amy Pattie
Community Member
1 month ago

But cheese isn’t naturally orange yellow. Americans add red food dye.

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Robert "Bob" Mankoff, an American cartoonist who was the cartoon editor for The New Yorker for nearly twenty years, agrees with this statement. To justify mockery that is political satire, he goes back to Aristotle: "By holding bad behavior up to ridicule we might, as it were, 'laugh folly out of existence.' Syllogistically, a la Aristotle, it might be put something like this: 1) Politicians behaving badly will be mocked; 2) Politicians don't like to be mocked. 3) Politicians will stop behaving badly."

However, is that what really happens? Not really. But more than two millennia later, political folly is still as much with us despite the fact that political satire reaches more of the populace than ever before, as part of the entertainment industry. "There's now a veritable satiric-industrial complex. Furthermore, that populace is no longer just a passive recipient of Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, The Onion or an occasional New Yorker cover or cartoon, but is actively participating by blogging, Twittering and Facebooking their own material. Don't get me wrong, I like political satire and would like to think that it has some effect other than tweaking the mighty and getting laughs. But I think that would be confusing appearance with reality."

#3

The Onion’s Bias Is Showing Again

The Onion’s Bias Is Showing Again

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Roxy Eastland
Community Member
1 month ago

Well, that comment aged well . . .

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TheCats_Bananas believes there are two main reasons why people fall for fake political satire. "The first one [is] that people are used to seeing news on their feeds so when they see a satirical headline, they don't even consider that it might be satirical unless it's extremely farfetched, so they just comment on it without much of a second thought," they said. "The second reason is that in recent times, actual news headlines have gotten so unexpected and ridiculous that people have just accepted the fact that most of it is real so there's little reason to doubt anything anymore."

Their insights really make sense—I think r/AteTheOnion isn't laughing at the people in the pictures; it provides multilayered commentary on political communication and mass media. And that's why the subreddit is awesome.

#4

Damn Liberals And Their Fake News About The Sun

Damn Liberals And Their Fake News About The Sun

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Quaxaryar
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

*Cease. Reading books might help with these errors.

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#5

Big Bollocks

Big Bollocks

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Juan Hernandez
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

im all for massive Mohammed

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#6

Please Tell Me I've Finally Found One

Please Tell Me I've Finally Found One

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Shelp
Community Member
1 month ago

I mean, the real sommeliers spit out the wine after having tasted it. Given that children have better taste buds than adults, it could be a good idea.

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#7

Free Kidneys

Free Kidneys

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Juan Hernandez
Community Member
1 month ago

what a nice person

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#8

I’m Done

I’m Done

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

This one actually could have been cool if real. Auction off the first doses to help pay for the rollout for us normies.

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#9

To Be Fair, It Sounds Like Something He’d Say

To Be Fair, It Sounds Like Something He’d Say

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Amy Pattie
Community Member
1 month ago

Really I wouldn’t be shocked if he actually said that

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#10

Dont Worry I Told Her It Was Satire

Dont Worry I Told Her It Was Satire

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BlackestDawn
Community Member
1 month ago

While this one is satire it wouldn't really surprise me if the much more militant and extremist segment of vegans would actually make such an argument.

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#11

Poor Christians. Don’t Know What Hit Them

Poor Christians. Don’t Know What Hit Them

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Juan Hernandez
Community Member
1 month ago

i wish these was a thing

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#12

Bunch Of Morons

Bunch Of Morons

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wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

When you can't see the real moron

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#13

You Know Who Else Didn't Fight In Vietnam? Obama! Thanks Obama

You Know Who Else Didn't Fight In Vietnam? Obama! Thanks Obama

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Athena June
Community Member
1 month ago

Every time I read news about Trump, I am genuinely not sure if it’s satire or not

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#14

I Don't Think I Can Trust You Though

I Don't Think I Can Trust You Though

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Amy Pattie
Community Member
1 month ago

Trust me I’m a “parent”? How is this not a parody page?

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#15

Please Help This Girl

Please Help This Girl

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Tabitha L
Community Member
1 month ago

But the scariest part is that the poster thinks this is a travesty. Of course a white woman should be treated exactly the same as a black man. The fact that they think it is a miscarriage of justice, I have no words.

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#16

Paw Patrol Gets Too Real For This Atetheonioner

Paw Patrol Gets Too Real For This Atetheonioner

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

Didn't he have to reload a couple of times? Sounds like the black Lab was just asking for it.

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#17

The President Ladies And Gentlemen

The President Ladies And Gentlemen

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Sanguinius
Community Member
1 month ago

TRUMP IS AN IDIOT LOL

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#18

Spray My Kids In The Eyes With Vinegar? I’m Open To It

Spray My Kids In The Eyes With Vinegar? I’m Open To It

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Sasy
Community Member
1 month ago

I would agree this one seems dangerous, way too many people that take things like this seriously.

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#19

Such Disrespect

Such Disrespect

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Athena June
Community Member
1 month ago

No respect for the president? I wonder why?!

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#20

One Giant Leap For Apekind

One Giant Leap For Apekind

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Hazel Waring
Community Member
1 month ago

Haha if you think animals haven't been launched into space to die before you've got another thing coming...

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#21

Since Posting, Someone Tried To Tell Her In The Comments And She’s Still Arguing

Since Posting, Someone Tried To Tell Her In The Comments And She’s Still Arguing

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Athena June
Community Member
1 month ago

Not a James Bond fan? Then why, pray tell, are you so invested in commenting on something about James Bond?

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#22

Is There Any Part This Guy Can't Play?

Is There Any Part This Guy Can't Play?

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Marcellus the Third
Community Member
1 month ago

You know it'd be Andy Serkis to play the worm, not Bale.

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#23

Wake Up And Bite The Babylon Bee

Wake Up And Bite The Babylon Bee

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Wolfstar
Community Member
1 month ago

In my case, a Bible was a weapon. I got disowned when I was 16 but before I was thrown out of the house, my bat sh*t crazy cousin threw the Bible at me and hit me on the head. I hope she has multiple concussions for the rest of her life.

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#24

Onion-Like, Still Ate It

Onion-Like, Still Ate It

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Marcellus the Third
Community Member
1 month ago

Which part of "unbelievable" did they confuse themselves with?

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#25

At Least She's Not Wrong

At Least She's Not Wrong

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Athena June
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Well... judging by some people’s’ dubious mask wearing technique....quite a large chunk of the population is ‘just stupid’

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#26

Found One Today

Found One Today

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Wolfstar
Community Member
1 month ago

I wouldn't be surprised if they did. People are crazy and a lot of them are racist idiots.

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#27

People Just Can't Accept Facts

People Just Can't Accept Facts

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PotatoNinja5000
Community Member
1 month ago

This is obviously fake. Where are the bible-bashing Christians throwing tantrums that they are "totally the nicest and bestest Christian"? 🤣

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#28

Dear Old Sarah Here Has Some Interesting Opinions About This Particular Movie Detail

Dear Old Sarah Here Has Some Interesting Opinions About This Particular Movie Detail

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Rick
Community Member
1 month ago

This is just disrespectful to 90s actor Leonardo Dicaprio who drowned during the making of Titanic

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#29

Will Do Anything For Clicks

Will Do Anything For Clicks

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

😄😄😄😄😄

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#30

What In The Hell

What In The Hell

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Marcellus the Third
Community Member
1 month ago

"Wasting your time on Twitter"? Inconceivable!

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#31

How Can You Seriously Think This Is Real

How Can You Seriously Think This Is Real

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James016
Community Member
1 month ago

Given the Tory's callous handling of free school meals.......

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#32

Shared This On Facebook And All Of My Friends Are Freaking Out And Sending Me Frantic DM’s

Shared This On Facebook And All Of My Friends Are Freaking Out And Sending Me Frantic DM’s

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

Excuse me, I have to go start a bonfire

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#33

What A Guy

What A Guy

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Luna
Community Member
1 month ago

Bloop bloop covering up comments scroll on pandas!

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#34

Eye Enlargement Surgery

Eye Enlargement Surgery

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Henry Cheves
Community Member
1 month ago

I hate when people use "could of" instead of "could have."

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#35

Defender Of Truth

Defender Of Truth

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

They couldn't put it on the internet if it wasn't true.

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#36

I've Found My First In A While. Be Careful On The Roads

I've Found My First In A While. Be Careful On The Roads

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James016
Community Member
1 month ago

The way some people drive, this could actually be a good thing

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#37

The Poster Doesn’t Quite Let The Number “42 Million” Really Sink In

The Poster Doesn’t Quite Let The Number “42 Million” Really Sink In

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Shelp
Community Member
1 month ago

Having seen how some dumb Americans estimate the death toll of 9/11 to be "around 3 bln", I wouldn't be surprised to see that some people actually believed that headline.

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#38

You'd Think The Name Would've Given It Away

You'd Think The Name Would've Given It Away

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Athena June
Community Member
1 month ago

Now you say it, the resemblance is uncanny!

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#39

Please Be A Joke

Please Be A Joke

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Amy Pattie
Community Member
1 month ago

Oh crap, I too am married to a former teenager. Hope the feds don’t find me.

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#40

Go Blow Your Noodle

Go Blow Your Noodle

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Adam C
Community Member
1 month ago

You should work for WHO

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#41

She Might Actually Be Vegetarian Based On How She Ate That Whole Onion Raw

She Might Actually Be Vegetarian Based On How She Ate That Whole Onion Raw

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, I'll have the baby back ribs, and make sure it was a white baby.

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#42

Americas Team

Americas Team

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

if they chopped him in half, that would bring a new meaning to "halftime show"

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#43

If I Worked At The Onion, My Office Would Be Full Of Framed Screenshots Like This

If I Worked At The Onion, My Office Would Be Full Of Framed Screenshots Like This

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

He should sue them for false imprisonment. He is obviously too tall to be the Ripper.

Robert Catte (It, It's)
Community Member
1 month ago

Oh, no, why do you have a dead cat for your profile pic?

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Eric Law
Community Member
1 month ago

The libreal media is still better than the conservfake media!

Avery S Alberico
Community Member
1 month ago

Never trust onions...too many layers

Amy Pattie
Community Member
1 month ago

These replies must be trolling!

M O'Connell
Community Member
1 month ago

Or these people might be so upset at the Liberal media because they are unable to separate satire from reality. It would explain a lot of their anger.

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Downunderdude
Community Member
1 month ago

Damn that libreal media. It's all just feak nesw.

The 5-star rated 5-star rating system
Community Member
1 month ago

"Libreal media".

Lexi Mitchell
Community Member
1 month ago

These people are allowed to vote!

juji
Community Member
1 month ago

libreal

Martine Remmelzwaal
Community Member
3 weeks ago

Why do these people keeping dragging librtals/ politics into this?

backatya
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes he was that old lol

I I
Community Member
1 month ago

no s**t Sherlock

Carter Brown
Community Member
1 month ago

This comment has been deleted.

AlmightyOne
Community Member
1 month ago

Someone please explain who Jack the Ripper is to me. Seriously

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Google him

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#44

Idiocracy

Idiocracy

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Wendillon
Community Member
1 month ago

Every year that movie becomes less of a comedy and more of a documentary...

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#45

I Finally Found One

I Finally Found One

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Bettye McKee
Community Member
1 month ago

Please, people, check the source BEFORE you comment. It's The Onion.

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#46

That Person Who Replied Must Of Felt So Intelligent Writing That

That Person Who Replied Must Of Felt So Intelligent Writing That

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J. F.
Community Member
1 month ago

Oh please, it's common knowledge that Rammstein wasn't only the first metal to fly into space but they were also the first germans on the moon

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#47

What Are People These Days

What Are People These Days

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Marcellus the Third
Community Member
1 month ago

"Florida employing a Predator instead"

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#48

That Sweet Sweet Babylon Bee

That Sweet Sweet Babylon Bee

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Vic
Community Member
1 month ago

The Jedi Order.

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#49

My Whole Timeline Has Been Quoting This Tweet

My Whole Timeline Has Been Quoting This Tweet

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chi-wei shen
Community Member
1 month ago

At the same time bulletproof backpacks are real.

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#50

R.I.P. Big Show

R.I.P. Big Show

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Truth Monster
Community Member
1 month ago

Those unattended children....RIP Harambe

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Note: this post originally had 94 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.