lol creative clever

super vote: ( left this week)

now click a caption or


caption-writing tips

get it write.

When writing out your caption, ensure it has accurate grammar and spelling. Avoid the use of 'text slang' unless it's relevant to the caption.

It certainly makes for a better caption if the reader is able to read your submission through, first time, without having to try to understand what it is you mean.

It's the same with stand-up comics. If they got halfway through a punch line, fumbled, then tried to start again, the build up is lost, and the audience are likely to be less receptive.

comment 5 comments
written by Davie Marshall
15/01/09 10:37am

avoiding cliches

There are some caption ideas that seem to crop up a lot. 'Budget cuts hit [insert film sequel here]' is a common example. Tempting as they are, I try to avoid them - unless there's a new angle on it, of course.

comment 4 comments
written by Christionion
15/01/09 1:43pm

hold your horses

Very simply: Don't post unless you have something funny. Please don't feel like you have to caption every picture. It's like those movie sequels you wish were never made because they ruined the rest for you. Remember, God kills a kitten everytime a rubbish caption.

comment 3 comments
written by Ian M
16/01/09 8:37pm


Short people are funny.

There are also many captions I feel would benefit from being cut down to size. 'Looks like a crossed line again.' might have worked better as simply 'crossed line' But long captions have their place too. I enjoy stuff like 'Lesson 3: When walking your pot, it is crucial to allow interaction with other pots and owners. This will ensure a richer understanding of the environment and more importantly, their boundaries.' Fantastic. Surreal. Hilarious.

comment one comment
written by Christionion
15/01/09 1:28pm

be your own competition...

...your own harshest critic, walk the road less taken, inspect the narrow back-alleys. The neighborhood looks more interesting and will surprise you often. Refine, condense, check spelling, grammar.

Did you laugh? Chuckle? Hoot? Smile? Grin? Amuse yourself?

You did?

Screw the down votes, then.

The greatest artists/musicians create for themselves first and if the audience follows...bravo.

comment 5 comments
written by Mitch
17/01/09 3:40am


Some contributions invite us to poke fun at the person in the picture and that’s all good fun. I try to avoid being too rude though. The victim may be a friend or relative of the person who submitted the picture. Anyway, being cruel is not the same as being funny – doing a ‘Russell Brand’ doesn't win my respect. I think this applies to swearing too. Implied references are so much more fun than blunt crudeness.

comment 3 comments
written by Christionion
15/01/09 3:12pm

4r's review, research, write, re-write

It doesn't look like much has been added here for a while so I thought I would share a few things that I have found that have been really helpful.

*Look at the upcoming pictures. For those that may be unaware (I was for at least 2 1/2 months) you can click on the orangey upcoming photo timer box (in photos) and it will transport you to all upcoming photos.
*For each new picture analyse the detail, what is the focal point, surroundings, situation etc
*Also look for what's not there but could/should be.
*Link words or phrases to the picture i.e For a juggling dog picture you may link, Mutt, Fido, Circus, trick, toss

*Use a thesaurus to look for other words which could be used instead of the ones you thought of i.e Circus, show, festival, spectacle. is quite good
*Look for phrases, film titles, idioms, songs linked to the words. is particularly good.

*Try to be punchy and concise
*Read it to yourself and try to imagine you are reading it for the first time. Does it make sense? Is it clear what is meant? Or is it like one of those text messages that makes perfect sense to you but to no-one else.

Once you have written your caption and submitted it is never too late to edit it, make it shorter, make it longer or even change it completely. Some of my best captions have come from last minute changes of mind. You may also see the general trend of the styles of captions people are voting for and realise you are totally off the mark (these types can however do quite well). Different styles may include puns, be scenario based, use wordplay or punchlines.

Hope this is helpful to at least one person out there.


comment add comment
written by Leroy Brown
05/02/15 11:47pm


Hanging is too good for a man who makes puns; he should be drawn and quoted.
Fred Allen (1894 - 1956)

comment add comment
written by Mitch
21/01/09 3:58am

stating the bleedin' obvious

I wish people wouldn't bother. It's more satisfying if we have to fill in something ourselves. Just being unexpected has merit. In fact the best captions are sometimes completely surreal. One way I try to do this is to invent a new way to explain what we see. Occasionally there's a small detail in the picture you can pick up on to help tell the story.

comment 2 comments
written by Christionion
15/01/09 2:54pm

vote as well as write.

It sounds simple, but I always check latest submissions and vote on them. It's what keeps the site moving. If you don't take time to read other captioneers input, it's much like a comic playing to an empty house, or one talking over them for the whole set.

Also, when voting, don't forget, there's a 'thumbs up', a 'thumbs down', but also the option to remain neutral if you don't really have anything truly for or against a caption.

comment 8 comments
written by Davie Marshall
15/01/09 2:28pm


I think some purists would probably say that puns are cheap. In many cases they are right. Truly tortured puns make me groan inside. But that doesn’t mean they’re all bad. I really love clever ones like ‘Slouching Tiger Hid in Drag’. An artful, elegant, witty pun is brilliant. A bad pun is really unforgiveable.

I also think puns should be delivered deadpan, without a capitalised ‘nudge nudge’ or a hyphenated ‘wink’. Even worse is the exclamation mark – surely a sign that the writer is throwing everything they can at trying to sound funny. And nothing is so unfunny as someone trying too hard to sound funny.

comment add comment
written by Christionion
15/01/09 1:22pm


Often they are just not punny.

comment 2 comments
written by Keith McClory
19/01/09 7:34pm

newcomers check before you post

Read all of the captions before you post yours just in case someone has already written it. It makes you look like you are either incompetent or a cheater!


comment add comment
written by Ian M
16/01/09 8:04pm

suggested edits taken

If you comment on how a caption can be improved and the captioneer edits the caption to reflect your suggestion, then please delete the comment.

comment add comment
written by Eileen M.
09/08/11 10:51pm

have a go at the highest common denominator...

Never be afraid to be too clever or elegant. A beautifully-worded, Gary Larson-esque, third person soliloqy can be just as rewarding as a sharp, quick pun...

And, I think, that way, if someone gets it, they deserve to get it... They earned it.



comment add comment
written by Paul (Muff) Diver
01/10/09 12:10am


The passive object in relation to the active object in relation to the surroundings. Puns help, twisting word/phrases meanings, assonance, common knowledge, current events. If you are completely stumped go lateral and perhaps pick up on one specific point of the picture and embelish it. To be honest, I'm not even sure where they come from, it just happens.

comment add comment
written by Flip Vicious
25/02/09 2:44pm

tactical voting

PLEASE DO NOT TACTICAL VOTE. Everyone at some time has had an urge to tactical vote, but don't do it. Voting on everyone else's negatively will not only make you suspicious but affect the captioneer themselves, making them produce lower-quality captions.

My account cannot logout so I am unable to tactical vote. If the negative vote was scrapped the competition would be fairer, but also more fun.

comment 4 comments
written by Ryan M.
19/01/09 7:10pm

don't copy

Don't copy someone else's caption, even if it is a slight rewording of the caption. There is nothing worse than to see the winning caption being your caption with an extra exclamation mark.

Feel free to relate back to other captions, such as the Swan Dive Lake/Nutcracker, but don't just plagiarise someone else's idea.

comment one comment
written by Ryan M.
19/01/09 5:07pm

look elsewhere

Sometimes, there is a really good caption that isn't obvious. Look in the background for other people/images/objects as they are often unseen yet they can make really good captions. It is also good if, when doing this, you can relate it back to the main image of the caption.

E.g. The image of Darth Vader in a supermarket - there is a man looking a lot like Captain Jack Sparrow in the background - relate to both films in your captions and you have a winner

comment add comment
written by Ryan M.
19/01/09 5:03pm

be yourself

I think the best thing to do is just take a look at the picture and if something pops into your head that makes YOU laugh, write it down. Don't try and think about what other people will like because then you will end up with something generic. You will be surprised by how many people will share your sense of humour!

Personally, I love the weird slant people put on pretty normal pictures.

comment one comment
written by Ian M
16/01/09 8:24pm

giving credit

Further to the 'brevity' tip, I've noticed that sometimes I see a caption and think 'I would have said it differently'. Fair enough. But I think we should credit the person who had the original idea.

This happened with the picture of a fish jammed into the grill of a VW. Grant S wrote 'I guess Fuzzy dice has been replaced with grilled fish!!'. My feeling was that 'Grilled fish' worked better.

Would I have thought of it by myself? I don't know. But looking back, I should probably have at least nodded in Grant's direction. Maybe by saying 'with apologies to Grant S' or something. It's just good manners.

comment add comment
written by Christionion
18/01/09 4:58pm

sense of humour,

If you can still smile, overlooking the clumsy partisan/clique contriving usual suspects, it's still worth pursuing the apposite.
Often, the tactics are more humorous than the captions.
Imagine articulating your caption to a group of friends.
If you've no friends try your family.
If you've no family, try 'Lost and Found.'

comment add comment
written by Polymorph ~ ~ ~
15/08/16 8:45am

it's just fun

Enjoy & Enjoy who gives a monkey's who wins it's just a great way to relax & take your mind of the problems which everyone has in life.
I find it very helpful after a busy day, get my tea & sit down with a glass of vino & have a laugh after all there's sod all on telly.

comment add comment
written by Bad Boy Dennis.
05/09/15 4:08pm

don't post for the sake of it

Only post if you have a genuinely good idea. The world doesn't need to hear your blabber on how 'this woman looks straight out of Twilight'. Save your caption quota for something good! It will improve your caption/like ratio as well.

comment add comment
written by nepali_ninja
22/02/14 10:34pm


understand what each section and how to arrive there means. stop-understand-move

comment add comment
written by john malley
26/10/13 2:52pm

re visit a caption.

We are a fickle bunch. Most people loose interest with a thread once a few days have passed.
Often its the late runners that issue fab captions but are over looked when we all move on.
Before the final tally is made, pop back to review the latest captions. You may just unlock a last minute jem or think of something you hadn't before.

comment add comment
written by Lisa Nelson
03/03/12 4:08pm

just do it.

Take a quick look at the picture & if nothing funny comes into your head leave it alone there are lots of others.

Find one that clicks straight away & "Just Do It" short & to the point.

comment add comment
written by Richard Shirley
07/08/11 4:31pm

tee hee

Captions tend to work in two extremes: When you take a detail that no one else's noticed; or when you take something obvious in the picture then subvert it. Oh, and Lady Gaga is the easiest short-cut so let's avoid her.

comment add comment
written by Michael Monkhouse
01/08/11 9:48am

be kind to thy fellow captioneer...

...Especially ones who vote a lot. (Anyone else notice how devilishly handsome Chris Beach's smile is?)

Make a kind effort to avoid using the "add comment" to give scathing reviews or pass critical judgment... If a caption doesn't tickle your fancy, simply pass over it. One is certainly entitled to their opinions but it is with congenial tact to keep the nasty ones within the privacy of the home. As Thumper's father once taught us, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."

I understand this is a competitive site, which is a great part of the allure, though I truly believe it's primary objective is to be fun and amicable for all. ☺☻☺

comment one comment
written by SHA SHA
03/01/11 6:05pm

some local knowledge for newbies has some idiosyncrasies that may baffle newcomers, so here is a brief explanation of a few of the more common themes and characters you may encounter (2022 version):

Dave is the resident butt of caption jokes. He is an inherent loser. Do not confuse him with site member Dave Bryan, an inherent winner. Dave Bryan has a cat.

Cats own They took it over from the Mannequins several years ago. It is for this reason that at least 1 in 10 photos must be of a cat.

The cats employ a guy named Chris Beach to run the site. Chris works tirelessly to keep things running, so show him appreciation. He likes cats, having a laugh, and complex mathematics.

If you do not have a university degree in complex mathematics, do not try to understand the Caption Quota equation. It will put you in a coma, or at the very least, soundly asleep.

Another good way to get to sleep is to count sheep, unless, of course, you are from Wales or New Zealand. I'm a New Zealander and I own 2 sheep, which is well below the national average.

Speaking of sex, the site's party girl is called Tina from Doncaster. Multiple party girls are generally referred to as Essex girls.

Which bring us back to pussies. The site's main pussy is called Mittens. Mittens is actually a name reserved for cats with white paws, but this is a trivial fact, and Captioneers rarely let facts ruin a good caption.

What is a Captioneer? Well, as a member of, you are. Welcome, and God help you.

comment add comment
written by James Lennox
08/06/22 11:34pm

avoid the superfluous exclamation mark

An exclamation mark at the end of a caption looks a bit rookie to me. Adds nothing to the comedy.

comment 2 comments
written by Chris Beach
09/09/10 1:39pm

good captions

Think of a good caption, then enter it

comment add comment
written by Brian Malco
14/04/14 3:45am

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