Welcome to a park like no other, where the animals who live here govern themselves in a zoocracy. This is their newspaper.
Thank you for visiting The Mammalian Daily.
Whether you arrived here by chance or by design, we realize you might be a little confused about what this is, so we’ve put together a short guide to help you navigate the site.
What is The Mammalian Daily?
In a phrase (or a hashtag), it’s #theparodyofeverything.
The Mammalian Daily is a satirical newspaper that sends up everything you’ve ever seen, thought, feared, or hoped for. If you’re disturbed by the dominance of certain families on television or the power of certain people to set the style or content of our lives, you might be equally disturbed by the appointment of an advice columnist as a professor at The Park’s only university.
But, then, again, you may not.
If you are disturbed about race relations and inequality in your country or in the world, you won’t be surprised to find out that The Park’s striped and spotted population has a harder time finding work and that some of them are taking advantage of stripe and spot removal services.
If you distrust the press, you won’t find yourself alone in The Park, where the most influential newspaper (that would be us!) refuses to name its journalists.
What The Mammalian Daily is not, though, is a newspaper about animals and their lives.
The animals in the newspaper (and their concerns) represent the issues of our time. The animals are not real, but the issues certainly are.
Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions:
Is there only one way to understand The Mammalian Daily?
No, there are as many ways to understand and enjoy the newspaper as there are readers. You can read the paper as humour or mockery or satire or parody. You can read it superficially or you can think about the issues and your own perspective on them. The choice is yours.
Am I wrong to laugh and just enjoy it?
Of course not! It’s supposed to be funny. And sad. And thoughtful. And ridiculous. All in one. Just like life.
Which park is it?
It is not a specific park; rather, it is “every park.” To the animals who live there, and in The Mammalian Daily, it is “The Park.”
Does the park that is written about in the newspaper really exist?
Not strictly speaking, no. But it does have much in common with real parks, in that it has grass, trees, animals, water, and a natural organization of its own.
Is the news only about mammals?
No, The Mammalian Daily reports news about all species and groups in The Park. The news is reported from the perspective of mammals and as it relates to mammals.
Where is The Park located?
In the hearts and minds of the animals who live there, and in those of its faithful readers.
Are all the reporters mammals?
The Mammalian Daily does not reveal the species of its reporting staff. This policy has been the subject of much debate recently in The Park. The Association of Non-Mammalian Park Newspapers (ANMPN) has criticized The Mammalian Daily for hiding its reporters’ special biases with the technique of anonymous reporting. Just this year, Mammalian Daily managing editor Orphea Haas succumbed to the pressure to change the paper’s no-name policy, albeit slowly. Read what she said here.
Is it a real park?
To those of us who work on The Mammalian Daily, it is very real, indeed.
Why do the names of animals appear in the upper case in The Mammalian Daily?
It is the editorial policy of The Mammalian Daily to place in the upper case the names of all animals, trees, seasons, and most other aspects of nature, except for weather.
Is The Mammalian Daily based on any newspaper for humans?
Now you’re getting the hang of it. Yes, originally, it was conceived as a parody of a real newspaper. We won’t say which one. But, as many works of fiction do, it took on a life of its own. Once the animals got hold of it – and of the writer – control slipped the surly bonds of humanity and touched the face of fiction.
Is this about animal rights?
We get asked this question a lot. And the answer is that as much as those connected to The Mammalian Daily are passionate about the ethical treatment of animals, the newspaper is less about animal rights than it is about human wrongs.
How frequently does The Mammalian Daily publish and where can I buy it?
In the beginning, The Mammalian Daily’s print edition was published quarterly and sold by subscription. We also sold the newspaper at book fairs such as The Word on the Street and animal events, such as Woofstock. For a time, it was also available free of charge at Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club in Toronto. As well, we exhibited at book fairs such as BookExpo America, BookExpo Canada, the London Book Fair, and The Toronto International Book Fair.
Then, like The Park, we decided to go greener—and to make Park news free to the general public. Now, we deliver our news almost exclusively online. We try to keep you up-to-date on Park news every day—either on this web site or on Facebook and Twitter.
Our last print edition was published in September, 2012. You can read a pdf version of it here. It is possible that we will publish more issues in print, but no definite plans have been made.
Do you publish anything besides The Mammalian Daily?
Yes, we do!
In 2014, we published our first book:
Lovely To Look At: What Animals Should Know About Humans
Noreen, TMD Advice Columnist and University of West Terrier professor of Human Studies, offers her expertise to other Animals in this eye-opening book. An essential read for all Animals, whether they live inside or outside The Park.
If you’d like to know more about the creation of The Mammalian Daily, have a look at the writer’s blog that I’ve just started, T-220 and Counting.
In the fall of 2016, the government of Canada asked creators and others to share their stories about Canadian digital content, its importance and impact. You can read my submission here.