WTF Magazine’s Jason Fyk used to be broke in jail, but is now a Facebook millionaire
Jason Fyk used to be broke and was in jail a few years ago. He even contemplated suicide. Now he drives a Ferrari and is a millionaire thanks to Facebook. Fyk is the founder of WTF Magazine and FunnierPics.net, which generates around $275,000 per month.
In 2005, Fyk was working in real estate, but the market turned down and he went into a “financial tailspin.” Making things more complicated, he had a wife and child to support. Several of his friends approached him about starting up a website and decided to register WTFMagazine.com.
The acronym stood for “where’s the fun” rather than the other explicit definition. Fyk formed an LLC on September 2010 and launched a website in January 2011.
After WTF was launched, Fyk was thrown in jail. He drove to Baltimore to interview an American stunt group called the Adrenaline Crew for a story. All of them were hanging out in a parking lot and were about to drive to the interview location. A drunken brawl took place while Fyk was on the side and started to film the fight on his smartphone. After things got serious, he stopped filming and tried to break up the fight. He was blamed for allegedly planning the fight and was charged with attempted murder.
“It was a stupid drunken brawl,” said Fyk in an interview. “Granted, people got hit, and granted, it was a fight, but it was never a felony fight. It was misdemeanor-assault stuff.”
Fyk was put in jail and had to spend the very little money his family had left on hiring a lawyer. After two months, the charges were dropped and Fyk was released from prison as a broke man.
“I couldn’t just go get a job at McDonald’s, because my bills were massive,” added Fyk. “My kid held me together. I was almost suicidal. It was a disaster for me. I put my head down and kept pushing forward.”
The only resource he had was social media and it was free. He knew that he had to build a distribution list to gain traction and generate revenue. So he launched a Facebook Page for WTF Magazine.
Fyk initially tried to build on only one Facebook Page representing WTF Magazine, but he realized that pages unrelated to his website could be useful. For example, he created a “Family Guy” fan page.
Fyk now has over 40 Facebook Pages and controls more than 28 million “likes.” These pages reach 260 million people on Facebook and the distribution list sends his website tens of millions of page views per month. This generates him millions of dollars per year in ad revenue. He now employs around 16 people and a ghostwriter that is working on his memoir.