Comedian Aziz Ansari jumps on the direct Web distribution bandwagon


Following in the footsteps of fellow comedians Louis C.K. and Jim Gaffigan, “Parks and Recreation” star Aziz Ansari has begun offering his jokes directly to his fans via his website. Dubbed “Dangerously Delicious,” Ansari’s comedy special costs $5, and users can download it “a few times,” says Ansari on Twitter. Like C.K. and Gaffigan’s specials, “Dangerously Delicious” was entirely self-produced, and all proceeds from sales go directly to the comedian — not to a corporation.

“I did a standup tour called Dangerously Delicious,” writes Ansari on his blog. “Then I filmed it at the Warner Theatre in DC in June of 2011. I paid for the production myself and wanted to release it online. While I was trying to figure out the proper method of release, my friend and hilarious comedian Louis CK did his whole thing and it seemed to me that people really liked that model, so that was the route I decided to go.”

Ansari says the direct-distribution model will allow “Dangerously Delicious” to be entirely “uncut” and “uncesored” — something that might not be the case were he to have picked a more traditional distribution model. He also assures fans that the jokes in “Dangerously Delicious” are “totally different” than those he will tell during his upcoming Buried Alive tour.

The growing movement in comedy toward direct distribution over the Web is a direct result of the overwhelming success of Louis C.K.’s experiment, which saw more than 220,000 people download his special, “Live at the Beacon Theater,” bringing in more than $1.1 million. Gaffigan was the next to jump into the game, with his special “Jim Gaffigan: Mr. Universe,” set to go on sale on his site next month.

As we have mentioned before, we have high hopes for direct Web distribution. By leaving Big Entertainment out of the profit pool, these comedians take control from the very people who brought us monstrous bills like the Stop Online Piracy Act and the PROTECT IP Act. We would all be wise to support these endeavors whenever possible, if for no other reason than to tip the scales a bit back in our favor.

Watch a preview of “Dangerously Delicious” below. (Warning: NSFW laguage):

Emerging Tech

How MIT hacked horticulture to cultivate a hyper-flavorful basil plant

At MIT, Caleb Harper used his personal food computers to alter the climate in which he grew basil. Exposing it light for 24 hours a day changed the flavor profile of the plant, making it spicier and stronger.

Mortal Kombat 11 DLC characters reportedly leaked: Who’s next after Shang Tsung?

A datamine on Mortal Kombat 11 reportedly revealed all the DLC characters that will be added to the game's expansive roster. The leak corroborates the hint that the anti-hero Spawn is on his way to joining the fighting game.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix right now (April 2019)

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

No TV? No problem. Here's how to watch the NCAA championship game online

Whether you want to watch the Big Dance on your phone or on your smart TV, we have the lowdown on all the ways to watch March Madness you can handle. Grab your foam finger and some nachos.

Back off, photo thieves: Flickr alerts photographers to image theft with Pixsy

Worried about someone swiping your photo off Flickr? The image sharing platform can now integrate with Pixsy accounts to alert photographers when a photo is used without permission by using artificial intelligence to scour the web.
Social Media

Facebook’s tributes section serves as an online memorial for deceased users

Death doesn't stop Facebook users from sharing memories, and now those memorialized posts have a dedicated spot on the network. Facebook Tribute is a section on memorialized profiles for users to write posts and share memories.
Social Media

How to protect yourself from GoFundMe scams before donating

Can you spot a GoFundMe scam? While the fundraising platform says scams make up less than a tenth of one percent of campaigns, some do try to take advantages of others' charity -- like a case last year that made national news.

House votes to restore net neutrality rules, but effort faces long odds

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved the Save the Internet Act, a measure intended to restore net neutrality rules that were repealed in 2017 by the Federal Communications Commission.

Search all of Craigslist at once with these great tools on web and mobile

Not finding what you need in your local area? Craigslist can be great for finding goods and services from further afield too. All you need do is learn these tips for how to search all of Craigslist at once.

The FCC and White House want to bring high-speed internet to rural areas

The FCC and the White House unveiled new initiatives to bring high-speed internet to rural areas, including $20.4 billion in incentives to companies to build infrastructure. The FCC also announced ways to speed up the rollout of 5G.

Internet Explorer zero-day exploit makes files vulnerable to hacks on Windows PCs

Evidence of an Internet Explorer zero-day exploit capable of letting hackers steal files from Windows PCs was published online by a security researcher who also claims Microsoft knew of the vulnerability and opted not to patch it.

Buying airline tickets too early is no longer a costly mistake, study suggests

When you book can play a big role in the cost of airline tickets -- so when is the best time to book flights? Earlier than you'd think, a new study suggests. Data from CheapAir.com suggests the window of time to buy at the best prices is…

Report says 20% of all 2018 web traffic came from bad bots

Distil Networks published its annual Bad Bot Report this week and announced that 20% of all web traffic in 2018 came from bad bots. The report had other similarly surprising findings regarding the state of bots as well.