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Only Kidding....?

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Since 1996

Joined: 31 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2008 5:52 pm    Post subject: Only Kidding....? Reply with quote

Written words are cold. They do not come with facial expressions, tone of voice or body language. Interpretation is up to the reader.

If you post something in jest, kidding or tongue-in-cheek, it's a good idea to make it clear that is your intent. Otherwise someone might take it seriously. People can even be offended if they misinterpret something posted in jest. Emoticons or smilies may help, but are not really adequate. They are so commonly used in so many situations, that some readers may skip right over them and not stop to think "Oh, this means the person is kidding". There is no universally-accepted "I'm kidding" icon or smilie.

Remarks don't necessarily need to be intended in jest for them to be misinterpreted. Misunderstandings happen all the time and can result in ill-will between members.

Suggestion: Preview your post before submitting it. Re-read it. Consider it being read by someone who doesn't know what's in your head. Adjust your wording as needed to make your meaning clear.

PS - Just a few days after writing the above, I went to a comedy club and this one joke stuck in my head:

Someone stole my identity, now HE doesn't have a life!

I used this as a sig file once...only once. Sure enough, someone took it seriously and sent me an e-mail, thinking my identity had really been stolen! So, misunderstandings can and will happen. It's the limitations of the written word.

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