Satirical US website The Onion has created a spoof photo community website called Netpix (


June 1, 2009: Satirical US website The Onion has created a spoof photo community website called Netpix (

[RIGHT: A Netpix user checks out some of the latest offerings in the “African-American pilots” genre. Pic courtesy]

Whether you find the site amusing will depend to an extent on whether you agree with the premise that there’s a hell of a lot of unimaginative or just plain crappy images on websites like Facebook (but certainly not within the online pages of Photo Review). Here’s how The Onion describes the “new service”: “(It) offers a wide array of photos and genres, including pictures of sunsets, images of friends sitting around picnic tables, grisly crime scene photos, the complete works of Ansel Adams, snapshots of Carol and her dog, and recent portraits from Tanya Kohler’s baby shower at the Treehouse restaurant in Manchester, NH.”

“It’s so convenient. You get a photo in your mailbox, look at it for a while, and then drop it in the prepaid envelope and send it back,” Houston resident Jonathan Collins said. (Netpix is a double-barrelled joke which also takes the mickey our of the US Netflix service, where you can order a DVD online rather than making that painful trek to the local video store: “Netpix officials are expected to announce plans next week to debut a new ‘view instantly’ feature, giving customers with the necessary system requirements the ability to watch their favorite photos online.”)

Netflix already boasts 50 million registered users, according to The Onion, and, “provides personalised recommendations by using an algorithm that analyses recent rental activity and then makes suggestions based on a member’s picture-viewing habits.

“For instance, if a user enjoyed viewing the ‘Stoddard Family Trip To South Dakota’, the site might suggest he or she rent ‘The Ziegler Family Vacation To Six Flags’, or perhaps even ‘The Stoddard Family Cookout, 2006’.

“I really enjoy photos of maple trees, but then Netpix recommended that I look at a picture of a birch,” Utah resident Sheila Cox said. “I couldn’t believe I’d been missing out on such a great tree all this time.”

Other collections on the Netpix site include thr Anne Geddes-inspired “Happy children wearing hats”; “Critically acclaimed blueberry pies”; and the always well-supported “Out of Focus/Poorly Composed” series.