Since he started writing the long-form, stick-figure-illustrated blog Wait But Why
in 2013, Tim Urban has become one of the internet’s most popular writers. Urban, according to Fast Company
has “captured a level of reader engagement that even the new-media giants would be envious of.” Vox
describes Urban’s articles as “a feast. At the end, you feel sated, like you just learned the shit out of something, like you get something in a way you didn't before … you will understand the world better for reading them.”
A world tired of a flood of short, shallow listicles quickly noticed—two months after Wait But Why
was born, Urban’s article Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy
swept the internet, becoming both the most shared and most commented-on article of the month on all of Facebook. Urban has since produced dozens of viral articles on a wide range of topics, from why we procrastinate to why artificial intelligence is scary to why we haven’t seen any signs of aliens to why it's so hard for him to start peeing when there's someone at the urinal right next to him. His articles have been regularly republished on sites like Quartz, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Time, Business Insider, and Gizmodo.
In 2015,Fast Company
wrote that “Wait But Why
is disproving the notion that thoughtful, long-form content and virality are mutually exclusive.”
Today, Wait But Why
receives over 1.5 million unique visitors per month on average, with some month’s visitors topping 10 million, and the blog has over 300,000 email subscribers. The Wait But Why
community of readers is also highly engaged, with every article generating hundreds of thoughtful, intelligent reader comments and some reaching well into the thousands.