The American Bystander Magazine Offers No-Cost PDF Subscriptions To Comedy Fans With Significant Illness

SANTA MONICA, CA. (September 24, 2019) — The American Bystander, spiritual successor to great humor publications such as National Lampoon, SPY, and MAD, has instituted a new program to supply issues to comedy fans with chronic, debilitating diseases. The program will allow anyone with a significant illness to receive PDF versions of each new issue of the magazine via email.

Who is eligible for this program? “If you are, you know it,” says Michael Gerber, Bystander’s Editor & Publisher and a “spoonie” himself. (“Spoonie” is what many sufferers of chronic or debilitating illness call themselves.) “At the age of 21, I developed a severe autoimmune condition which kept me housebound. I didn’t look sick, but my life collapsed, and as the decades passed, I felt intense loneliness and shame on top of great physical pain. My condition is in remission at the moment, but I wanted to do a little something to offer support—and a few laughs—to those who are suffering.”

The American Bystander has set up a special landing page on their website for those who would like to participate in the program. Any interested parties can simply log on to and enter their name and email address to receive PDF versions of future issues. No other information will be gathered, nor will this list be provided to third-parties.

“One thing well people do not understand is how difficult it is for ‘spoonies’ to make money,” said Gerber. “So we are offering the PDFs at no cost, and will encourage people to forward the issues to anyone suffering in this way. Our subscribers, advertisers and contributors are 100% behind this; we could not do it without their support. To my fellow spoonies: We see you. We support you. Hang in there.”

About The American Bystander

Launched in 2015, The American Bystander is an all-star print humor magazine in trade paperback book format. Hailed by The New York Times as “essential reading for comedy nerds," and Newsweek as “the last great humor magazine,” the publication has re-established a beachhead for print humor in an internet age, featuring contributors from The Simpsons, The Onion, Monty Python, National Lampoon, SNL, The New Yorker, SPY, Letterman, and more.

PressMichael Gerber