The MaxFun Blog

Maximum Fun is your home on the internet for things that are awesome. Our blog will guide you and our family of podcasts will entertain and inform you. About

Partnerships at


One of the biggest outcomes of our 2010 pledge drive was the hiring of a new development director, Theresa Thorn. Theresa manages our relationships with the folks who support our show. That means, of course, our listener-donors, but it also means larger organizations.

These partnerships sometimes take the form of underwriting - Ask Metafilter has been supporting our show for years, and in return we credit them on every broadcast. Recently, Smith Micro Software has been supporting us, in part to get the word out about the latest version of their utility StuffIt.

We also have done more specific projects. Philips, for example, supported our trip to South by Southwest last year. While we were there, we recorded two full Sound of Young America programs. We also produced a few special video interviews exclusively for Philips' Facebook page.

Almost all of these awesome collaborations have come about because someone followed what we do here, and reached out to us (and in many cases to their colleagues, as well). If you're interested in partnering with us, email Theresa Thorn at theresa (at sign) We're actively looking to expand our shows and our services, and we hope you can help! If all goes well, we'll soon be as cool as the cool people in the cool partnership picture above.

Kasper Hauser and Mike Birbiglia in San Francisco


Our pals in The Kasper Hauser Comedy Group are teaming up with our pal Mike Birbiglia for a veritable Laugh-a-Palooza in San Francisco on October 19th. KH will be doing sketches, Birbigs will be sharing funny stories and everyone will be LAUGHING THEIR ASSES OFF.

Tickets for the show, which is at the Palace of Fine Arts, are on sale now.

If you're not in the Bay Area, you can check out Mike's full schedule here. The tour also features dates with other great pals of ours like Jen Kirkman and Nick Kroll.

Podthoughts by Colin Marshall: The Hopkinson Report

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Vital stats:
Format: social media marketing riffing and interviews
Duration: ~15m, though sometimes substantially longer
Frequency: more or less weekly
Archive available on iTunes: all

So I hear this “social media” stuff is pretty big these days. Specifically, I hear it from The Hopkinson Report [RSS] [iTunes], a more or less weekly audio dispatch from Jim Hopkinson, Wired magazine’s “marketing guy.” Having recently picked up marketing and advertising as intellectual interests (read: I realized I couldn’t market or advertise myself to save my life), I soon got Hopkinson and his Report as a recommendation.

It’s a pretty damned lively show. Hopkinson speaks at a rapid clip, almost like a more self-aware but no less enthusiastic infomercial host. Given the time constraint on each episode, his speaking speed would seem to come by necessity. He’s not pressed into John Moschitta territory or anything, but most of his shows clock in around fifteen minutes on average. Most of the time, he just takes a marketing technology, trend, question, or case study and riffs on it. There are occasional welcome longer-form episodes — interviews with authors and other sorts of creators — but there are three things us kids value above all in our media: brevity, brevity, and more brevity.

Again, that’s just something I’ve inferred from listening to the program itself. I’m glad I approach Podthinkable podcasts by simply plunging in, because if I’d read the episode titles in advance, I would’ve developed serious, itchy reservations. “4 Important Video Trends Worth Watching”. “5 Reasons You Should be Using a Twitter Client”. “Four steps to riding a viral video wave — Recognize, Hypothesize, Capitalize, Monetize”. “Social Media is the New Rock and Roll”. I keep washing and washing, but the dirt won’t come off. The dirt won’t come off.

Let me emphasize that, despite what those titles might imply, this is not a loathsome show. It actually delivers useful payloads with surprising frequency; it’s just that they’re often encased in those hokey shells. Hopkinson has some solid advice about résumés, for instance [MP3], although I think he neglected to mention how rarely the really cool work out there to do doesn’t ask for résumés at all. And he’s been in the technology game long enough that he can bring an interestingly wide perspective to certain trends, comparing what’s going on now to what went on in the eighties and early nineties.

As marketing podcasts go, I doubt The Hopkinson Report will unseat, say, CBC’s The Age of Persuasion (which may or may not turn out to have a secret podcast feed if you Google around) in my favorites list any time soon. This might just be because I’ve never felt entirely comfortable in my own era and generation. Sure, I’m on Twitter, I grasp the usefulness of Twitter, and I know how big Twitter is, but I still feel more than a little weirded out when listening to anything about “how to write great tweets.” I’ll stick to my sweater vests, the CBC, and Jim Hopkinson’s conversations with interesting self-marketers and his observations about Japanese toilets. You kids run along and turn your videos viral.

[Podthinker Colin Marshall also happens to be the host and producer of public radio’s The Marketplace of Ideas [iTunes], the blogger of The War on Mediocrity and the writer of The Ubuweb Experimental Video Project.]

Bye Bye Baby!

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A truly classic Giants fight song.

Bunny Rabbits in Cups

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Look: I usually don't post "viral videos" on this blog, but at this point two dozen people have emailed me this one, so I feel it's important that we all get on the same page re: me having seen it (and having loved it).

Two things I can get behind.

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The San Francisco Giants and our man Ashkon.

I'm a big fan of giving a shout-out to F.P. Santangelo, as well.

Podcast: The College Years: Back from Jury Duty!

Olde English
Paul Feig

The College Years is a look deep into the vaults of The Sound of Young America. Take a journey with us every week as we post a new program or two from our salad days.

Today's theme: Back from Jury Duty!

The College Years is back from jury duty! Well, at least Jesse was around this episode's original broadcast date. Still, oh happy day. Listen in as Jesse welcomes many talented gentlemen during this episode. First up, Olde English pays the show a visit. At the time of the interview, the sketch group were still in Bard college but already performing at legitimate venues and credible festivals! Funny back then and still hilarious now, check out their work.

Following that, Jesse speaks with director, actor, and writer Paul Feig. As a director, he's done work on your favorite programmes, including Arrested Development, Bored to Death, and Mad Men. As an actor, you may remember him from the classice film, Heavyweights (note: Heavyweights is awesome). And as a demigod, you better know him from Freaks and Geeks. If you're interested in a good read, check out Superstud: Or How I Became a 24-Year-Old Virgin.

The Sound of Young America, Live in NYC


If you didn't catch our announcement, tickets are now on sale for our live show at WNYC's Greene Space! The show will include:

interviews with

with standup comedy from

a reading from

and a special performance of rarities and never before performed songs from

When: Friday, October 22 at 7pm
Where: The Greene Space
44 Charlton Street (at Varick Street)
New York, NY 10014
Tickets: $30, available HERE.
Admission includes complimentary glass of wine or beer.

Look forward to seeing you there for a super fun show!

Punchline's Anniversary Comedy Show in LA, Monday Night

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Punchline Magazine is celebrating its Five Year Anniversary with a night of comedy at the Largo in LA this Monday night, October 11th.

You can't beat this line-up -- Marc Maron, Greg Proops, Maria Bamford, Whitney Cummings, and Chris Hardwick -- and the Largo is a very cool venue. Click here to buy tickets for the show.

Comedian, Actress and Author Kristen Schaal: Interview on The Sound of Young America

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Kristen Schaal

Kristen Schaal is a comedian, actress, and writer. Her brand of humor is weirdly sweet, and probably exemplified by her role as Mel, the obsessive fan on The Flight of The Conchords. She's been a contributor to The Daily Show, appeared in a number of films including Dinner for Shmucks, and lent her voice to animated characters in Toy Story 3, Shrek Forever After, and Aqua Teen Hunger Force.

Her book The Sexy Book of Sexy Sex, written with Rich Blomquist, is out now.

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