When a joke is not funny?
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Thread: When a joke is not funny?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Moneytoo's Avatar
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    When a joke is not funny?

    So, I'm reading this book, The Slip (by Mark Sampson). In the beginning, the poor guy makes two comments during televised interview which many find offensive, so within a week his life starts falling apart. I'm two-thirds through (mostly reading it on the bus), and it looks like he's delusional, thinking that everyone is upset about the first comment, when it was actually the second - will see

    It's set in Toronto, and I thought it's hugely exaggerated and such reaction couldn't have happened in real life. But two recent examples proved me wrong. First there was Bill Maher with the n-word. And now Uber director who thinks women talk too much.

    Personally, I thought both were just funny ad-libs, and people must be taking themselves way too seriously if they get offended by something like this. I watched Maher's follow up episode with apologies, and can kinda see the other side's point of view. But being a woman (quite talkative at times lol), I'm definitely not offended by the second one.

    Just curious what others think, and hopefully any examples of jokes that you personally found offensive - and why?



  2. #2
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    I don't know about TV, but in regular life, I think audience makes all the difference. The workplace is totally different than a close group of friends. With the close friends, anything goes. At the workplace, inappropriate or controversial jokes are absolutely not appropriate.

    The Uber director is in a workplace -- he's the leader of a company. Even if he's joking, it's absolutely not appropriate to make any jokes at the expense of women or any other group. Anyone with common sense knows that. Which means that a slip such as David Bonderman's indicates that either he lacks common sense or lacks self control.

    Both are unacceptable traits for someone in his job role. That's why he left (or was asked to leave and resigned to save face).

    If you think the board overreacted to David Bonderman -- as you implied in your post -- then you also might not understand what's appropriate for the workplace.

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    There are lots of politically correct thugs in society now that can't take a joke. They don't like free speech, especially that which disagrees with their orthodoxy. They've elevated the clarion call of "offense" to sainthood.

    But be careful. There are lots of them on this site. Some are even moderators.
    "That's what I do, I drink and I know things" - Tyrion Lannister

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    I'm of the opinion that we (especially Canadians) are becoming a bit too thin-skinned. We don't know how to take a joke, laugh off something perhaps somewhat inappropriate and have taken political correctness to obscene levels of stupidity. It's almost as if we have not learned to play properly with other children in the sandbox of life. Some people take personal offense at some of the most innocuous comments, or try real hard to find someone's offhand remarks as offensive in even the slightest amount. It reeks of not really having their own life, but attempting to live vicariously through the comments of others.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Koogie View Post
    But be careful. There are lots of them on this site. Some are even moderators.
    Audience and environment is everything.

    This particular forum has rules. They are here. This was decided by the owners of the web site. It's a privately owned web site... it's not the street. The owners get to call the shots, because this is their turf.

    Other places don't have rules. You can say what you want among your family and close friends.

    There are parts of the internet you can say anything you want. You can go to ZeroHedge or Reddit and post the most obscene and objectionable content you want.

  7. #6
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    By the way, it irritates me that my workplace (my office) is so politically correct. It's overly politically correct, and they're nuts about it.

    But as with this forum, it's someone else's turf. The company is owned by the founder and owners, and they determine the rules. It's my choice whether to work there and follow their rules.

    Frankly, Portland is excessively politically correct, way more so than Toronto or anywhere else in Canada I've been. So I sympathize with some of the points being raised here.

  8. #7
    Senior Member olivaw's Avatar
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    Bondsman made a single inappropriate joke. His email apology should have been enough. There was no pattern of sexist comment of the sort that made people uncomfortable so the resignation was unnecessary.

    It has very little to do with this forum. The moderators don't ask people to resign their jobs over over inappropriate forum posts.
    If you have something to say - then say.

  9. #8
    Senior Member Moneytoo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by james4beach View Post
    If you think the board overreacted to David Bonderman -- as you implied in your post -- then you also might not understand what's appropriate for the workplace.
    To continue from the Trump thread - yes, I work in tech/engineering (was a developer for many years, then a QA, now finally made it into Dev Management) As for women, I think I was more offended when the new owners hosted a "Special Meeting for Women in Technology" after our company was acquired. The speaker was a slightly brown female executive from their side, who honestly shared how she was peeved when she realized that she ticked off two boxes when promoted: female and PoC. I had to ask what PoC was (only knew it as a "Person of Contact" - turned out to be "Person of Colour")

    As for what's not appropriate for the workspace... Guess I was lucky. My first boss here (at this company) was a Canadian woman, older than me, with a similar sense of humour (that some more timid co-workers found crude) We were doing this project for the big US company, and I was her "right hand", and she tolerated - and what even seemed like encouraged - my "insubordination". Yet couldn't get me promoted because our upper management wasn't happy with my outspokenness. So there were 4 or 5 PMs changed within less than two years (all men - who just couldn't keep up and take the stress), the latest one's name was Christian. We were hosting a catered lunch for 4 visiting customer executives (all male) when she asked me to call, "what's his name"...

    Me: "Oh his name is too religious for you to say, huh?"
    Her: "How do you know I'm not religious?"
    Me, without missing a beat: "Sorry I didn't know you were a Satan's Worshiper!"

    A moment of silence, she smirked - and the American visitors just burst out laughing. Later one of them came to me and said that it was hilarious - and he envies our relationship... But yeah, I had to tone it down significantly since then
    Last edited by Moneytoo; 2017-06-14 at 02:16 PM.

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    "(especially Canadians) are becoming a bit too thin-skinned." - I don't think Canada is on its own here. In the UK people have become way too sensitive and are almost looking to catch you out every time you open your mouth

  11. #10
    Senior Member sags's Avatar
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    Are people desperately waiting to let their inner crude self loose ? If not, why the compelling need to offend people as a joke ?

    And why the desire to have such offensive actions sanctioned by society or the government ?

    If anyone wants to be a boorish idiot.....they don't need my permission to do so. Donald Trump never asks for it.

    Last edited by sags; 2017-06-15 at 09:29 PM.
    Someone planted a tree a long time ago so I can sit in the shade.

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