The Dilbert Hole

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The Dilbert Hole was a 17-piece comic strip created by Tristan Farnon of Leisuretown. The comic first appeared in 1996 under the title "A Comedy Crisis," was dispatched by Dilbert's e-lawyers, and was subsequently re-released in 1997 by rotten dot com.


   
 
Moreover, your use of the Dilbert marks will dilute the distinctiveness of our client's marks by trading upon the goodwill and reputation which the public associates with our client's Dilbert marks.
 

 
 

United Feature Syndicate, protecting their Dilbert Marks.





Humble Beginnings

Sometime in 1996, aspiring webcomic artist Tristan Farnon gave Dilbert a celebrity makeover. Through blood sweat and tears, Tristan chopped up the original comics and re-lettered everything into toilet humor, homo-erotic escapades, and sexual harassment jokes. He then uploaded them to his virtually unknown website Leisuretown, where they went unnoticed for six months before receiving a legal threat from Dilbert's corporate overlords United Syndicate Group. Accompanying this legal threat was a personal note from Dilbert's creator Scott Adams.


   
 
Do you want to go to jail?
 

 
 

—Scott Adams, Internet Tough Guy


   
 
No, I don't want to go to jail.
I'm not going to be a martyr for Dilbert.

 

 
 

—Tristan Farnon, deploying logic.




Despite the legal threats holding no merit due to the comics being a work of satire, Leisuretown complied and replaced the Dilbert characterization with stick figures. Fans and associates of the site were in an uproar, however despite their pleas, Tristan refused to fight against a billion dollar conglomerate over Alice giving Wally a blowjob.


   
 
A group of Leisuretown.com readers who worked at a law firm offered me pro-bono assistance with my case, but I wasn't convinced they were actually lawyers. More like system administrators.
 

 
 

—Tristan Farnon, understanding the internet.

Rotten Restoration

Time had passed and no mirrors had surfaced. It appeared that the comic had been forever lost in the abyss of Web 1.0. However, Tristan was holding a trump card: He was directly affiliated with popular shock-site rotten dot com, and they were more than willing to stick it to the man. Once the Dilbert Hole's drama had died down, Leisuretown gave the collection to Rotten and it was featured on their front page. Rotten knew this would create a legal shitstorm, and had taken steps to ensure that the content and their site would remain online.


   
 
I run the site www.rotten.com (very popular, it gets about 40,000 people per day, and over a million page views every day.)

Anyway we're going to put up soon "The Dilbert Hole", obscene and racist cartoons featuring the cartoon character Dilbert. They are very, very funny. The last time these were up, at another site of ours, we received a cease & desist letter from United Feature Syndicate. This time, our site is much more popular. We expect to receive another letter, and will probably have to take them down again.

Are you interested in hosting them once this happens?

 

 
 

Thomas Dell, owner and creator of rotten.com

TAKE IT DOWN

While the strips had originally remained on Leisuretown for only a few months, it took two years for the pointy-haired lawyers to catch wind of the Dilbert Hole's resurfacing. Being that this was the late 90s, DMCA Takedowns were still in their infancy, so big-media relied on classic Cease and Desist letters to protect their valuable Dilbert Marks.

Rotten did not wish to go to internet court over Dilbert, so they replaced the original comics with scanned copies of the legal threats they had received from Baker & Hostelter LTD. However, the damage had already been done, and the comics had been mirrored across internets far and wide. Scott Adam's crack legal team issued a second warning to Rotten a month later, DEMANDING that all mentions of the word "Dilbert" be removed from their site. Rotten agreed, and changed the title of the page to "The D*****t Hole".


   
 
Now they're complaining again, about us using the word "D*****t". Fine, we won't. It rhymes with Filbert. Starting to have uncaring thoughts about lawyers. Mentions of this word have been blotted out or defaced with the word PENIS.
 

 
 

—rotten's official response.

Current Status

While the strips are no longer hosted on Rotten, numerous mirrors had been created and many still live today. Google searching "The Dilbert Hole" will turn up strips from the series, however the entire catalog can be viewed in it's original order here.


   
 
What I don't know is why Scott Adams would feel compelled to contact me personally. I'm allowed to disrespect Dilbert if I want to, I've suffered through years of insipid Dilbert-related merchandise staring at me from other people's cubicles. I've worked on software products code-named "Dogbert." It just got annoying. After awhile each strip ballooned up with industry keywords, and they grew indistinguishable from any other rectangle of syndicated bumper-sticker humor. Let's all honk if we love Dilbert.
 

 
 

—Tristan Farnon's closing statements.

Gallery



Dilbert Hole - Complete About missing Pics
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Dilbert - Rule 34 About missing Pics
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Dilbert - Misc Strips About missing Pics
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