We're Hiring Writers, Editors, and a Producer

We're looking to expand the award-winning mental_floss digital team.

In the last year, mental_floss won a Webby Award (three in a row!), lost an ASME Award (thrilled to be nominated!), grew our YouTube channel to over 1.2 million subscribers (130 million views!), and reached 14 million people a month through mentalfloss.com. But we want to take this to another level.

It's not about the news cycle or sizzling hot takes or not believing what happened next. Our goal is to find fascinating stories and bring them back to our readers. The kinds of stories people want to share, and not just in the social media sense. There are so many incredibly interesting things out there. Can you help us uncover them?

Staff Writers (New York, Possibly Remote)

Primary responsibilities will include writing 2-3 posts for publication on the site each day. You'll also be pulled in on special projects. At least we think they're special. OK, we haven't come up with said special projects yet. But they're coming! You can help us think of them. 

Ideal candidates will have:
- Some experience pitching and writing for the web
- Energetic, positive written voice
- Strong research and reporting skills
- Ability to translate complicated concepts into accessible writing
- Ability to conceive, pitch, and execute timely stories on tight deadlines
- Ability to generate large volumes of story ideas
- Ability to work and collaborate with a small team
- Knowledge of social media platforms and analytics
- Willingness to take ownership of projects

*

Staff Editors (New York)

We're looking for rabidly curious grammar freaks to dream up great stories and edit other people's work. You can write about almost anything, and you will. Why Paraguay loves Rutherford B. Hayes. What people did for fun in the 16th century. Why the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were so obsessed with pizza. Chaucer. Mini-golf. Drones. Why Syrian golden hamsters spend so much time at the liquor store.

Primary responsibilities will include conceiving and assigning story ideas that fit our smart, quirky voice and positive tone, editing work from freelancers and staff writers, writing posts, and generally elevating mentalfloss.com.

But because we're a small editorial team, you'll wear many hats. You may be asked to help with video scripts and board games and event planning and new apps. It's not just because you're new. Our head of business development proofreads our newsletter. Our digital art director is in charge of watering the office plants. (Yes, we have plants.) Our co-founders will be looking over your applications. Everyone does a little of everything.

Ideal candidates will have:
- At least three years of editing, writing, and assigning experience
- Natural curiosity and the ability to generate tons of story ideas
- Attention to detail
- Ability to work quickly
- Strong research skills
- A network of freelancers they would love to bring to our site
- Ability to nurture writers with constructive feedback
- Ability to collaborate with a growing team
- Knowledge of social media platforms and analytics
- Experience with Drupal and Photoshop a plus

Web Producer (New York)

We're also looking for an entry-level web producer to transform the stories our staff and freelancers create into posts that are ready to venture out into the web. Your job will include building stories in our CMS, finding and editing images for each story, and working with our editorial team to make sure everything's running smoothly. Ideal candidates will have:

- Experience working in a CMS
- Experience with Photoshop
- Ability to work quickly and manage their times
- A creative personality
- An eye for design
- Basic knowledge of HTML

How to Apply

- Send your resume and cover letter to jobs@mentalfloss.com
- Put the name of the job you're applying for in the subject line
- Candidates for the writer and editor jobs should include links to three things you've written or edited that you're proud of

We offer health, dental, vision, and life insurance coverage, an optional 401k enrollment (not currently matching), FSA/transit flexible spending, 15 vacation days, plus various discounts on gym memberships, entertainment, etc. We look forward to hearing from you!

The ChopBox Smart Cutting Board Has a Food Scale, Timer, and Knife Sharper Built Right Into It

ChopBox
ChopBox

When it comes to furnishing your kitchen with all of the appliances necessary to cook night in and night out, you’ll probably find yourself running out of counter space in a hurry. The ChopBox, which is available on Indiegogo and dubs itself “The World’s First Smart Cutting Board,” looks to fix that by cramming a bunch of kitchen necessities right into one cutting board.

In addition to giving you a knife-resistant bamboo surface to slice and dice on, the ChopBox features a built-in digital scale that weighs up to 6.6 pounds of food, a nine-hour kitchen timer, and two knife sharpeners. It also sports a groove on its surface to catch any liquid runoff that may be produced by the food and has a second pull-out cutting board that doubles as a serving tray.

There’s a 254nm UVC light featured on the board, which the company says “is guaranteed to kill 99.99% of germs and bacteria" after a minute of exposure. If you’re more of a traditionalist when it comes to cleanliness, the ChopBox is completely waterproof (but not dishwasher-safe) so you can wash and scrub to your heart’s content without worry. 

According to the company, a single one-hour charge will give you 30 days of battery life, and can be recharged through a Micro USB port.

The ChopBox reached its $10,000 crowdfunding goal just 10 minutes after launching its campaign, but you can still contribute at different tiers. Once it’s officially released, the ChopBox will retail for $200, but you can get one for $100 if you pledge now. You can purchase the ChopBox on Indiegogo here.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don't return, so we're only happy if you're happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

How the Trapper Keeper Trapped the Hearts of '80s and '90s Kids

Courtesy of Cinzia Reale-Castello
Courtesy of Cinzia Reale-Castello

No matter when or where you grew up, back-to-school shopping typically revolved around two things: clothing and school supplies. And if you’re an adult of a certain age, you probably had a Trapper Keeper on that latter list of must-buy items.

Like the stickers, skins, and cases that adorn your smartphones and laptops today, Trapper Keepers were a way for kids to express their individual personalities. The three-ring binders dominated classrooms in the '80s and '90s, and featured a vast array of designs—from colorful Lisa Frank illustrations to photos of cool cars and popular celebrities—that allowed kids to customize their organizational tools. 

In this episode of "Throwback," we're ripping open the Velcro cover and digging into the history of the Trapper Keeper. You can watch the full episode below.

Be sure to head here and subscribe so you don't miss an episode of "Throwback," where we explore the fascinating stories behind some of the greatest toys and trends from your childhood.