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BeDope Sells Out - Closes Down

Filed under the:  department.
Posted by:Ryan on Monday, 29 Jan, 2001 @ 6:19 PM

BeDope, that bastion of BeOS related humor, seems to be closing down after three years of good times. They are going out with a bang, after having acquired AOL Time Warner and creating “the new AOL Time Warner Be Dope organization” While that is probably questionable, it states it’s their final issue. And I’m gonna miss them. Thanks for the laughs guys. UPDATE: Mike has issued a letter to clarify any confusion over the BeDope closing. Read More to see it.

But Seriously Folks…

By Mike Popovic

Judging by some emails I’ve received and some postings on various websites, it seems my last Be Dope story has
created a bit of confusion. Excellent. What better way to bring Be Dope to a close than with confusion and chaos -
basically the two elements that formed the core of Be Dope for three years.

But I’m writing to say that Be Dope is in fact ceasing publication as of 29 January, 2001 - no hoax, lies, scams, early
April Fool’s Day jokes - I swear. And no, we didn’t really acquire AOL Time Warner.

Why, then? There are a variety of reasons, none sinister or even particularly interesting to the average reader. There
is no outside force shutting us down. It’s simply a combination of a few factors.

This is not a radical new thought or a rash decision. Be Dope was started on a whim, and I never imagined it would go
on for three months, nevermind three years. At least a half a dozen times I’ve thought to myself “Ah, now I think it’s
time to lay the site to rest,” but opted to continue on for one reason or another - usually because I was just having so
much fun.

For example, I was going to close up shop last April 1st, by basically repeating a variation of the previous year’s April
Fool’s “shutdown” prank. I imagined everyone would have commented how lame it was that I was repeating the same
joke. But then a few weeks later when I didn’t return, they’d say “Oh, now I get it…”

I held off that time because the free BeOS 5 download was hitting the scene, and how could I miss out on all that
fun? And many times before and since I’ve decided to keep on writing. Scaling back on the publication schedule
helped out a lot, eased the pressure and just made it more enjoyable for me to work on the site.

Still, it’s my personal belief that it’s better to end something while it’s still in top (or at least pretty good) form, rather
than let it drag out forever until it degenerates into a shell of its former self. I always cringe when, for example, I flip
by some television show that really should have bowed out gracefully several years earlier. Be Dope has been turning
out stories for three years now, and that’s something like 17 years in web time.

Or maybe it’s my short attention span. Who knows?

In any case, late last year I felt like I should wind things down once and for all. Then, with the announcement of the e
Villa coinciding nicely with the three year anniversary of Be Dope, I saw the opportunity to go out with a blast of new
stories on fresh material. So here we are, at the end.

In my opinion, it’s been a fun and successful three years. Lots of people had a good time, and Be Dope even
introduced a few people to BeOS. There are about 430 stories posted in the archive (of which I wrote about 425) for
your reading pleasure. The Quotable Jean-Louis Gassée and Icon Tarot remain popular features with visitors
of all types.

So what’s going to happen to the Be Dope site and its various parts? Well, I’ll keep the domain active and all the
stories, interviews, etc. up there for the foreseeable future. I’ll (slowly) go through and do some code cleanup -
tweaking a few broken links, images, spelling errors, etc. And eventually, I’ll convert the last of the older stories to the
single-page format, for your linking convenience.

Someone expressed regret that they did not order a Be Dope tshirt. Don’t worry, I’ll leave that available at http://

The Quotable JLG, Icon Tarot and Haiku generator will remain active and receive updates as needed - either by
myself or more likely by another Be-related website.

Plus, someone has expressed interest in translating Be Dope stories into Japanese. As these stories become
available, I’ll create a special archive page for them and drop a line to the news sites so you’ll know it’s available.

What’s Next?

Good question. Originally, I was considering starting a web comic of some sort. I can draw halfway decently, and steal
/adapt artwork with extreme proficiency. However, looking over the web I’ve discovered there are plenty of web
comics out there, and a surprising percentage of them are both hilarious and well-drawn.

I do have another idea that’s in the early development stage that seems promising. It will let me write, draw and be
creative/humorous and is wide open as far as topics and styles are concerned.

Is it BeOS-related? Well, not really. Will I use BeOS to create it? As much as possible, naturally. Will I slip in BeOS in-
jokes that only BeOS diehards will get? Knowing me, probably. I’ll drop a note to the news sites when I have
something to show a few months down the line, in case anyone is interested.

Then again, if you have some project going that you think I’d be perfect for, I’m always open to new ideas. Also, I
have a book I’m finishing up (any publishers feel free to email me).

Of course, I’ll still be inspired from time to time with a perfect idea for a “Be Dope-style” story. If such an idea gets a
hold of me and won’t let go, I’ll write it up and submit it to the humor site segfault.org
. This has always been the destination for my non-BeOS related stories in the past (which you can read here).

Another project I worked on recently was a bit of interactive fiction called
Guess the Verb!
As some folks might have picked up from my constant Infocom references, I enjoy this sort of
thing :) I had a lot of fun with Guess the Verb! and will probably collaborate on future works of interactive fiction. In
fact, I’ve been promoted from beta tester to “Vice-President in charge of Pig Exposure” for a game in development by
the name of Degeneracy.

Thoughts on BeOS

Just to clear this up, I’m not ending Be Dope because I’m tired of/disenfranchised with/abandoning BeOS. I still use
BeOS everyday, and use other operating systems only when absolutely necessary (and then with great trepidatoin).
I’ll use BeOS as much as possible in my new projects.

And as some people know I’ve worked at Be, Inc for a while now. and I’m keeping my day job. So there you have it :)

(This is a good time to note that all statements contained in this posting are solely the thoughts and ramblings of
Mike Popovic, not his employer or anyone else).

In Closing…

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have visited, inspired, supported, encouraged and otherwise
supported me in my efforts these past few years. I couldn’t have done it without you.

If you have any comments or questions, you may email me (editor [at] bedope [dot] com), or simply add a comment to
this story if you’re reading it on a comment-enabled website. I’ll keep an eye on the threads and reply as best I can.

Rave on,

Mike Popovic

26 Responses to “BeDope Sells Out - Closes Down”

  1. Nutcase Says:


    I just want to point out that if this is a hoax, there will be blood-shed. That said, i truly believe it’s gone, and i am saddened. :-( ( <–do i have to pay despair royalties on that?)

  2. LoCal Says:

    …..and what if it’s just a hoax?

    Take a look at this:


    and then at this:


    I’m in doubt…..but we’ll see…..

    BeDope rulez :)


  3. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To LoCal @ 01/29/2001 6:47:47 PM

    Re: …..and what if it’s just a hoax?

    true.. but those were done on april 1st. This is January. Not exactly the season of pranks….

  4. Recovering Alcoholic Says:

    And the

    name of the company is ?????

  5. pocket Says:

    Memories….like the …

    I remeber it was BeDope that was responsible for me trying, and becomming addicted to, the BeOS.

    I was researching embedded operating systems just to find out what else was out there, and I ran across an entry on Google regarding AIBO. It was this BeDope article that got me started. At this point, you must remember that I had never heard of BeOS before–much less BeDope–but as I read the article, it intrigued me (though I wholly expected it was full of it–I thought the BeOS part might have been true)

    I went on to do some research about BeOS and liked what I read. I installed the free version some time later, and I have been a fanatic ever since.

    In my avid lust for more Be related information, I quickly realized that BeDope was full of it, but I heartily laughed my buns off at my own gullibility. The BeDope crew has kept me in stitches ever since.

    Thanks guys. You will be missed.

  6. rain Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/29/2001 6:50:05 PM

    Re: …..and what if it’s just a hoax?

    It’s always april 1st at bedope :P

  7. Deej Says:

    In Response To pocket @ 01/29/2001 9:23:16 PM

    Re: Memories….like the …

    I remember the april fool’s prank which BeDope and 2 other sites (can’t remember which they were anymore) were “shut down”. I was bummed for over a week! I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry, or find and slap Mike afterwards!

    Ahhh! This better be just another of Mike’s trips! :) I hope he hasn’t run out of “news to report” or time to report it or anything.

  8. James Airhart Says:

    T-Shirts, and farewells

    So when I wear my Be Dope T-Shirts (yes, I have two), everyone will go “That is so last millennium.” At least that’ll be better than everyone thinking that I take drugs. Ok, they’ll still think that I take drugs… (no, I don’t take drugs)

    Man, is there anyone in the BeOS land that had a hard time reading their first Be Dope Article? I had to read about 5 articles before I realized what was going on.

    If Be Dope is gone, or is just pulling my leg, that site really helped me join the BeOS community. Thanks. (And if you really do own AOL Time Warner Be Dope, make sure that they don’t put any AOL logos in the Matrix sequels. That’s what I fear the most from the merger. :)

  9. Deej Says:

    In Response To Nimdok @ 01/30/2001 02:10:14 AM

    Re: :~(

    I agree, that has to be my all-time fav too. :)

  10. Duffahtolla Says:

    Please be a Joke!!

    Man, I really like BeDope. I can’t imagine be-ing without it.

    It would be like Be without JLG..

  11. Nimdok Says:


    Ahhh man, I’m so sad. Thanks for all the laughs though BeDope, you are a very important part of the community and will be missed.

    Rather than dwell on the negative, I shall recall my favorite BeDope article:

    Steve Jobs’ Reality Distorition Field, hahahhahahahaha :)

  12. fred Says:


    I had no idea Bedope meant so much to many of you. I probably visited twice in 2 years. It just wasn’t funny enough to spend time reading. Call me boring, but I just preferred normal news sites.

  13. ??? Says:

    In Response To Deej @ 01/29/2001 9:54:29 PM

    Re: Memories….like the …

    This proves it.
    There is a conspiracy…
    (coming soon)

  14. tpv Says:

    In Response To Deej @ 01/29/2001 9:54:29 PM

    Re: Memories….like the …

    The other two sites were UserFriendly & SegFault.

  15. Eugenia Says:

    In Response To fred @ 01/30/2001 02:14:41 AM

    Re: huh?

    You are boring. :)

  16. Permanganate Says:

    Yeah right!

    Not funny enough? Some of those stories are
    freaking SIDESPLITTING! This last one is great too.
    They’d better not be closing down - it kicks ass!

  17. David B Turetsky Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/29/2001 6:39:19 PM

    Re: btw…

    Where are we going to get our JLG nipple alerts from?

    Come on, it’s not April yet? BeDope, don’t leave us!

  18. LoCal Says:

    But if they shutdown one day -

    , then I hope they will distribute the site as a .zip archive……I would love to stroe all their news.


  19. Mike Bouma Says:

    Re: BeDope Closes Down

    I loved BeDope`s “Amiga Pres Adopts BeOS” article, it was very well timed. :)

    This http://www.pvponline.com/archive.php3?archive=19980824 comicstrip was recently sent to me and caused a smile on my face as well. ;)

    I would love to see more good satire websites. It`s a shame to see BeDope leaving the scene. Anyway thanks for a good laugh. :)

  20. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To David B Turetsky @ 01/30/2001 07:38:38 AM

    Re: btw…

    I actually think it’s for real. I think the confusion was planned to give Mike one last laugh, at the expense of the community. And looking at it from that perspective, its pretty damn funny. So funny in fact, that it’s hard to be sad about BeDope leaving, as much as I like them. I just feel grateful for them having been around in the first place.

  21. prok Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/29/2001 6:50:05 PM

    perhaps you don’t remember so well

    I remember that joke pretty well. What you forget to realize is that that joke was initiated several weeks before april 1st. That’s why it was so damn successful. Mike is a prankster genius(IMO), so I wouldn’t put anything past him.

  22. anon Says:

    The Real Story

    I heard that the BeDope guy got hired by AOL Time Warner, and they wanted him to close the site. In typical BeDope fashion, the story seems to have gotten twisted around a bit in the telling.

  23. Mikko Mäkelä Says:

    Auts! Where is the petition!?

    Who would start the petition to keep BeDope alive?
    It would be the first time I would give money away just to keep a website alive…

    Anyway, what ever they do, I hope they continue with humor. 8)

  24. cedricd Says:

    In Response To fred @ 01/30/2001 02:14:41 AM

    Re: huh?

    go read the archive rather than base your opinin
    on just two articles..

    PS: you’re boring :-)

  25. mlk Says:

    [No Subject]


    I liked BeDope :(

  26. Deej Says:

    BeDope _IS_ closing

    Well all, for the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, check out BeForever.com.

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