Rhetoric, Education, Philosophy, Politics

Laugh Tracks

I don’t watch the Big Bang Theory and I intentionally don’t watch shows with laugh tracks. BBT has a laugh track and I just decided to watch a bit of it without the laugh track:

Very little to none of that is funny. But why are there laugh tracks? Well, they work. People laugh out loud more, even when they rate material just as funny as the group that has no laugh track and does not laugh out loud. But I think more work needs to be done on longer exposure to laugh tracks. Even brief interventions can change views, which is upstream from behavior. Also, parody works wonders at promoting negative viewpoints about the target of the parody, which can ultimately change behavior.

In a post on beauty and wisdom, I quoted Dallas Willard’s concern that endless, pointless sitcoms made the cute and mildly funny the standard of truth and beauty. Who and or what is the subject of the parody that constantly comes before us on television?

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