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Utilitarianism of Humour

 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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29 December 2016 07:03
 

After careful consideration of recent posting, I am reminded that this forum serves as a source of entertainment for many patrons.  As a result, I now wonder whether it registers with people that the fun they’re having may be at the expense of others.  For example, if trolling is your thing and you came to learn it made fifteen other patrons miserable would you still be inclined to do it?  Taking it a step farther, if you knew it discouraged fifteen pairs of eyeballs, belonging to remarkably intelligent humans, looking in with the intention of joining would you do it just the same?  Keep in mind how many actual eyeballs scan these pages.


Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

 
 
GAD
 
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GAD
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29 December 2016 09:52
 

He who laughs last, laughs longest…

 
 
jdrnd
 
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jdrnd
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29 December 2016 10:11
 
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

It depends.

 
GAD
 
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GAD
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29 December 2016 10:16
 
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 10:11 AM
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

It depends.

I think most people value their laughs move then others laughs.

 
 
Giulio
 
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Giulio
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29 December 2016 11:20
 
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

After careful consideration of recent posting, I am reminded that this forum serves as a source of entertainment for many patrons.  As a result, I now wonder whether it registers with people that the fun they’re having may be at the expense of others.  For example, if trolling is your thing and you came to learn it made fifteen other patrons miserable would you still be inclined to do it?  Taking it a step farther, if you knew it discouraged fifteen pairs of eyeballs, belonging to remarkably intelligent humans, looking in with the intention of joining would you do it just the same?  Keep in mind how many actual eyeballs scan these pages.


Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

Will be interesting to see where this thread ends up. Perhaps a ‘repugnant conclusion’ argument. 

My 2c: though there can sometimes be a thin line between schadenfreude, or even sadism, and humour, there is a difference between a joke designed to make others laugh and one to make yourself laugh.

Given that some people have little or no sense of humour even though they think they do, I wonder if this implies there is a Hard Problem of Humour?????

 

 
jdrnd
 
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jdrnd
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29 December 2016 11:20
 
GAD - 29 December 2016 10:16 AM
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 10:11 AM
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

It depends.

I think most people value their laughs move then others laughs.

I think you’re right.

 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
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29 December 2016 11:36
 
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 11:20 AM
GAD - 29 December 2016 10:16 AM
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 10:11 AM
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

It depends.

I think most people value their laughs move then others laughs.

I think you’re right.

About what?—GAD’s grammar and spelling?

 
 
Brick Bungalow
 
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Brick Bungalow
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29 December 2016 12:55
 

Part of what makes humor interesting is that it isn’t a precise calculation. People feel social pressure to laugh on command. The best stand up comedian can bomb if the atmosphere in a room is wrong. The most horrible events in life can also be the funniest. If could reliably predict these outcomes much of that necessary tension would be lost.

Expressing humor in a forum represents a risk. We have no way to know whether people will get the joke or whether they will take offense or whether they will laugh and find some additional solidarity and platonic intimacy.

I say go for the joke. (mostly) It’s a compliment to someones intelligence and to their emotional constitution. It’s a certain investment of trust and the gift of a story. People will be offended but that’s often ok. Someone people require personal offense as part of their process. A low tolerance for humor is often a signal for low tolerance of other things.

 
jdrnd
 
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29 December 2016 14:44
 
nonverbal - 29 December 2016 11:36 AM
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 11:20 AM
GAD - 29 December 2016 10:16 AM
jdrnd - 29 December 2016 10:11 AM
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

It depends.

I think most people value their laughs move then others laughs.

I think you’re right.

About what?—GAD’s grammar and spelling?

I like it best when he tries to be funny but it doesn’t go over well and he gets into fights.

 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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30 December 2016 09:55
 

Back to the OP:

On humor, I think the good far outweighs the bad.

 
 
unsmoked
 
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unsmoked
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30 December 2016 10:14
 
icehorse - 30 December 2016 09:55 AM

Back to the OP:

On humor, I think the good far outweighs the bad.

Right!  As Brick Bungalow said yesterday, “It’s a compliment to someone’s intelligence and to their emotional constitution.” . . . especially if it’s deadpan, not using smileys. 

 

[ Edited: 30 December 2016 10:38 by unsmoked]
 
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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30 December 2016 10:21
 

I guess the thing is we are all operating on an honour code.  The acting navigator that charts the course for each individual while yielding to the honour codes of others.  What some may find humorous others may find offensive and what some may find offensive others simply shrug off without a care in the world.  Comedy is the most convenient way to break the ice and alleviate tensions.  Without the luxury of eyeball contact I think it takes on an even more important role.  When we make laughter a priority it makes the seriousness of life much more palatable.  The responsibility of reading the room is up to the individual and essential for gaging whether or not a joke is gonna land.  The more we think it through, and view it from every angle, the more likely we are to know precisely when that is.  When we focus on the words and not the author of the words we open up the field creating a place for many players.  Which, of course, can only mean more fun.

 
 
Giulio
 
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09 January 2017 22:32
 
LadyJane - 29 December 2016 07:03 AM

Do the laughs of the many outweigh the laughs of the few?

I have been thinking about this question as it speaks to two different ways to be human.

We can share a particular sense of humour with a few friends, which most others we know don’t really appreciate. It’s a very special interpersonal thing (which you really appreciate when one of those friends passes away).

We can also participate in the infectious laughter of the crowd. There have been a couple of times when I have seen a comedy in a packed cinema, where everyone was in the right mood, and we were all feeding off and adding to the collective laughter of the crowd. A great experience, you felt larger than yourself in some way (music concerts can achieve a similar thing).

I think the two experiences are incomparable. Rather than asking if one outweighs the other, we could ask if one or both are essential to being human.

 

 

 

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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10 January 2017 00:28
 

I’m on my third attempt to write something worthy of this thread. In comedy, we call it The Hard Problem.

 
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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12 January 2017 14:47
 

Anything that makes us laugh is a win.  This can be accomplished without posting a word.  If we think something is funny, and may reach one single patron at this forum, post it.  Keeping the possibility of upsetting others in mind in the process.  Ideally, the more laughter the better, but everyone has a different sense of humour, so carefully examining the material before deeming it post worthy is advisable.  If you’re not sure…don’t.  It’s like morality.  We all know it serves a purpose we just vary on what purpose it serves.  What is good.  What is funny.  What is just.  It’s a matter of taste and expression.  Then, after some consideration of appropriateness, posting about it is optional.  And there’s always The Klein Bottle.  Please don’t forget, and this cannot be stressed enough, the concept of keeping it to yourself entirely.  There’s no reason every thought that crosses our minds necessarily needs to leave home.  And that’s often a win for everybody.

 
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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30 December 2018 06:20
 
Nhoj Morley - 10 January 2017 12:28 AM

I’m on my third attempt to write something worthy of this thread.

Take your time.

 
 
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