We Make Fun

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About Us

We are comedic storytellers, designers, and software engineers. We’ve written best-selling humor books, won design awards, and worked for America’s Finest News Source. At the beginning of 2014, we merged with San Francisco design studio I Shot Him and in the process added more talent, more clients, and more beard to the company.

Our Mission

We believe that humor combined with slick design and a creative use of technology can make complicated ideas more understandable and products more fun. Our mission is to bring great ideas to life and help others do the same.

Why Cultivated Wit?

Our company’s name stems from the Roman poet Horace, who wrote: “A cultivated wit, one that badgers less, can persuade all the more. Artful ridicule can address contentious issues more competently and vigorously than can severity alone.” Between that message and a shared vision of global conquest, we feel rather connected to the Romans.

Bio Stuff

CEO / Hashtagger-In-Chief
Baratunde Thurston is the CEO and company spokesmodel. He wrote the New York Times bestseller, How To Be Black, and served for five years as director of digital for The Onion. When he’s not speaking at gatherings such as SXSW Interactive, LeWeb, and Personal Democracy Forum, he writes the monthly back page column in Fast Company and contributes to the MIT Media Lab as a director's fellow. He has advised the Obama White House, has more than 10 years experience in standup comedy, and more than 30 years experience being black.
Creative Director / Midwesterner
Brian Janosch is creative director and resident expert in beer and cheese. Brian has held several titles in media and comedy including writing, editing, project managing, product developing, web strategizing, and gerunding. Brian is presently a writer at large for The Onion, where he previously worked for four years as deputy managing editor coordinating the writers room through production of books, videos, and physical pieces of paper placed in boxes on the street.
Product Director / Doomsday Prepper
Craig Cannon is product director and outdoorsman at large. Craig served as graphics editor for The Onion and campaign manager for the How To Be Black marketing campaign, contributing to the planning and largely implementing the digital strategy behind much of the book’s success. He’s a graduate of New York University where he served as president of the campus satire magazine and, for his thesis, designed an eReading platform.
Creative Director / Deputy Beard Advisor
Mike Jeter is the visual creative director and consistent purveyor of 4th grade toilet humor. In addition to bringing up the company’s average height by two inches, Mike previously founded and directed the award-winning design studio I Shot Him. He is an illustrator, designer, storyteller, and prefers to use his powers to promote a social good. Mike also started the successful design blog Black Harbor and lives in San Francisco with his wife, son, dog, and surfboard.
Interactive & Motion Director / Iguana Wrangler
Adam Peterson is interactive and motion director, and serves as Cultivated Wit’s chief ambassador to Utah. An accomplished animator and programmer, Adam lords over pixels and forces them to do his bidding. He previously worked with Mike at I Shot Him, building acclaimed web sites and bringing stories to life by granting characters the gift of motion. Adam owned and operated a pet store at the age of 18, and that is not a joke.