‘Advocate’ title is coincidence, claims creator of The Betoota Advocate’s would-be rival The Aussie Advocate

The creator of new satirical website The Aussie Advocate which appears to borrow heavily from cult Aussie title The Betoota Advocate, has claimed the similarity of its title is a coincidence.

The Aussie Advocate describes itself as the “newest kid on the block of satire news websites”.

Its launch comes as the increasingly popular The Betoota Advocate has begun to find ways of monetising itself, including today being unveiled as a partner for Meat & Livestock Australia’s new summer campaign.

The Betoota Advocate – launched in 2014 by publisher Piers Grove, and journalists Archer Hamilton and Charles Single, using the pseudonmyms  Clancy Overell and Errol Parker – now has nearly half a million followers on Facebook. By contrast, The Aussie Advocate has just 3,600 so far.

Contacted by email, the owner of The Aussie Advocate declined to be fully identified, telling Mumbrella his name was “Steve”.

But he claimed that the similar name, and red-and-black design, is in no way based on The Betoota Advocate.

He wrote: “There were two considerations I had with naming the publication. First, that it clearly depicted an Australian-based publication, of which came the first part of the title ‘Aussie.’

“Secondly, that it sounded not too dissimilar from an actual news publication. I actually selected Advocate from looking through lists of current and defunct Australian newspapers on Wikipedia. The lists I trawled through were the List of newspapers in Australia and List of newspapers in New South Wales.

“I figured that combining Aussie Advocate would make it easy to read and remember.  The Aussie Advocate is also a unique name.”

Rather than cashing in on a boom in satirical news, with spoof sites like The Onion in the US and Southend News Network in the UK growing increasingly successful, “Steve” argued that he has created the site to help entertain readers.

“It was only a matter of time before I combined these interests and find someone to write for or create my own satire news and social media websites. I decided on the latter as I could see room in the Australian market for fresh satirical news ideas,” he told Mumbrella.

“I really enjoy and appreciate good satire and parody, and given the number of satire news websites appearing online over the past few years with huge audiences is indicative of the many thousands of people in Australia and around the world who do so as well. So another reason for starting the publication is the satisfaction of providing an entertaining experience for readers of online satire.”


He added: “What I’m also aiming to do is further differentiate the publication by bringing fresh ideas and perspectives to the Australian satire news marketplace,” He added.

“For example, by incorporating the more unusual and unlikely events and figures from around the world you wouldn’t think have a place in the Australian context and then putting an Aussie spin on it.

“For instance, the article ISIS Leader asks: “Why the hell wasn’t I invited to speak in parliament?” tells of the disappointment of ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi for not being invited to speak in Parliament when Milo Yiannopoulos was invited to do so. The idea used for this story is so obviously caricature but to date is one of the most popular articles among readers. So it is these kinds of ideas I look to use to differentiate the publication.”

He added: “There’s a place for more satirical news websites in Australia but provided they can bring something new or different to the market. It’s much easier said than done but I believe if creatives with a keen eye, interest and craft in presenting satire news can find a fresh angle or niche in the marketplace they could do really well with it.”

Steve launched the publication in mid October, but is now getting some traction on Facebook. He hopes to continue to build an audience for the publication through social – across both Facebook and Instagram.

“I also aim to grow The Aussie Advocate into an online publication where writers and other creatives with the skills to develop engaging satirical content will be interested to contribute their work.

“I would also extend the offer to new and up-and-coming writers to have the opportunity to publish their work. At this stage I don’t have a budget to pay writers but I expect that to change in the future as my budget requirements change.”

The team behind Betoota Advocate did not respond to Mumbrella’s invitation to comment.


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