At Glyph, like any extreme subculture, we've developed a laundry list of long running inside jokes. There's not enough space here to go into detail, but in the past few months, they have been mostly related to cats, bath salt zombies, crows, giant bunny rabbits, NASA moon landings, sneezing, and short-term limping.
It turns out that different cultures have different preferences for what constitutes a funny joke, according to LaughLab – We're approaching the 10-year anniversary of Richard Wiseman's search for the world's funniest joke (which seems a bit relative) The research study is here and the winning joke is on page 4.
Interesting finds from the study:
- People who could take an accurate visual estimate of word counts were also likely to prefer complex jokes (the one that ends, "I'm not trying to outrun the lion; I'm trying to outrun you!") rather than simple ones (A fish's least favorite day is "Fry Day"). They're guessing it has to do with flexible thinking.
- Different cultures had differing preference for jokes that were absurd, used wordplay, featured characters portrayed as inferior or stupid, or made fun of stressful or sad topics.
- Duck jokes got better scores than other animal jokes.
It's been 10 years now and things may have changed. Many more cultures are readily accessible for surveying, in places not included in Wiseman's 2002 survey that covered mostly Western cultures (survey subjects were from Germany, France, Denmark, UK, Australia, Ireland, Belgium, USA, New Zealand, and Canada)
What types of jokes are funny in your culture? Your home country? Your region? Your industry? What is the funniest (clean) joke you have ever heard? Do you have any jokes that are so obscure that nobody gets them?