Home TheLaughButton: Like Hype Machine for Stand Up Comedy

TheLaughButton: Like Hype Machine for Stand Up Comedy

Taylor McKnight has been called a “serial mashup developer” and he’s involved in some of the coolest mashup sites we’ve seen in recent years. Three years ago he won the grand prize at the first ever MashupCamp for his site PodBop (“We podcast bands coming to your town”). Then he came on board at one of the most popular little music sites on the web, Hype Machine. He’s also working in a little startup called Sched.org, a service that started by offering an unofficial calendar for the SXSW festival and now pays the bills building custom social schedules for other events.

Today Taylor McKnight launched a new site that he’s been working on since Spring, and he says it’s like Hype Machine for standup comedy.

It’s called TheLaughButton and it’s yet another example of just how much fun content aggregation plus some added value can be.

The premise is simple, though the site doesn’t offer any details about how it works on the back end. TheLaughButton aggregates stand up comedy MP3s and videos from around the web. You can listen to “editor selected” favorites, to a random selection or to the most popular short comedy files as voted by users of the site.

The four person team behind the site curates the large collection and it appears there’s about a thousand audio files up now. That doesn’t sound like so much, until you think about 14 from Bobcat Goldthwait, 53 from Dane Cook, 100 from Bill Cosby and 178 other comedians represented on the site. Who needs more comedy than that?

There’s no account creation, at least so far, there’s not much of anything beyond guffaws, voting and links to search Amazon.com to purchase full albums from the comedians you like.

Poking around the site, it looks like TheLaughButton may eventually enable visitors to grab widgets to display their favorite comedy on their sites and collect affiliate payments from album purchases made through their widgets.

McKnight says there’s an iPhone app in the works as well – an aggregation of comedy and music content in one interface.

This All Makes Sense

Comedy is something people search for a lot on the web. Voting for the best comedy makes finding good content all the easier. Letting people put a widget of their favorite comedy on a site and sharing the money made from sales is a very smart way to spread TheLaughButton all over.

If McKnight and a loosely associated group of people who seem to be involved with the project are able to give it the push it will need to go beyond the inherent search power the content has – this site could end up doing well.

In the mean time, it’s a fun place to hang out.

Photo of McKnight by Flickr user kaekae0318.

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