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On the role of humor appreciation in interpersonal attraction: It’s no joking matter

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Abstract

The belief that another person shares your appreciation for humor is likely to exert a powerful effect on interpersonal attraction because sense of humor is a highly valued quality in others, and an important personal characteristic. In an attitude similarity-interpersonal attraction laboratory experiment, participants were led to believe an unseen stranger had many, or very few, similar attitudes. In addition, participants were allowed to interact, via an intercom, with the stranger, in order to relate a favorite joke. The stranger responded positively or neutrally to the joke. Although both attitude similarity and response to the joke influenced ratings of interpersonal attraction in the expected direction, the positive response to the joke was sufficiently powerful to overcome attitude dissimilarity. A dissimilar stranger who responded positively to the joke was more attractive than a similar stranger who responded neutrally. The results are interpreted as indicating that some dimensions of similarity are more important than others, and that humor appreciation may be an especially critical dimension.
... In interpersonal terms, research has suggested that people tend to like others more and feel more attracted to them when they exhibit a sense of humor that is similar to their own [46]. This seems to hold true both in romantic and in nonromantic contexts [9,37]. The idea that we are attracted to those who express similar views to our own has been a consistent theme in psychology, and particularly in humor research, stemming mainly from the similarity-attraction hypothesis [9,24]. ...
... This seems to hold true both in romantic and in nonromantic contexts [9,37]. The idea that we are attracted to those who express similar views to our own has been a consistent theme in psychology, and particularly in humor research, stemming mainly from the similarity-attraction hypothesis [9,24]. In addition, humor as an expression of cultural identity has also been shown to promote beneficial interpersonal outcomes, by facilitating the development of affiliative feelings among individuals and thus increasing cooperation and altruism towards them [12]. ...
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Abstract Humor is a pervasive feature of everyday social interactions that might be leveraged to improve Human-Robot Interactions (HRI). Goals: Our goal is to evaluate how the use of humor can improve HRI and enhance the user’s perception of the robot, as well as to derive implications for future research and development of humorous robots. Method: We conducted a systematic search of 7 digital libraries relevant in the areas of HRI and Psychology for papers that were relevant to our goal. We identified 431 records, published between 2000 and August of 2020, of which 12 matched our eligibility criteria. The included studies reported the results of original empirical research that involved direct or video-mediated interaction of humans and robots. Results and Conclusion: Humor seems to have a positive effect in improving the user’s perception of the robot, as well as the user’s evaluation of the interaction. However, the included studies present a number of limitations in their approaches to robotic humor that need to be surpassed before reaching a final verdict on the value of humor in HRI.
... Humor refers to a situation in which one uses verbal or nonverbal humorous expressions to elicit laughter and resolve dilemmas (Kane et al., 1977;Cann et al., 1997). Nonetheless, humor can serve as a way to attack people and lead to interpersonal tension (Martin, 2007). ...
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A sense of humor constitutes a core factor that influences teacher-student interactions. The humor that teachers utilize in class may influence teacher-student relationships, either positively or negatively. Moreover, teachers’ humor style influences students’ humor style, and vice versa. This study aimed to construct patterns of humor styles based on typology and explore how these patterns influence their interactions. Data were collected from 990 Taiwanese students regarding their self-reported humor styles and perceptions of class teachers as well as the interaction between the two. Subsequently, k-means clustering was conducted by dividing participants into four clusters based on the collected data: positive humor endorsers, negative humor endorsers, humor deniers, and contradictory humor endorsers. Among these, the grouping of contradictory humor endorsers differed from previous findings. Among the four clusters, the teachers of positive humor endorsers were perceived to have a significantly higher influence and proximity to students, whereas contradictory humor endorsers were perceived to have the lowest influence and proximity to students. The research findings revealed that different patterns of teachers’ and students’ humor styles have a distinct influence on their interactions, which deepens our understanding of the extent to which their humor styles consistently impact their interactions.
... Hertzler [77] considered sociological aspects (i.e., cultural patterns) to categorize humor. The usage of humor also increases interpersonal attraction in people [30]. Hay [70] described humor categories, such as wordplay, fantasy, insult, jokes, self-deprecation, and vulgarity. ...
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The frequent usage of figurative language on online social networks, especially on Twitter, has the potential to mislead traditional sentiment analysis and recommender systems. Due to the extensive use of slangs, bashes, flames, and non-literal texts, tweets are a great source of figurative language, such as sarcasm, irony, metaphor, simile, hyperbole, humor, and satire. Starting with a brief introduction of figurative language and its various categories, this article presents an in-depth survey of the state-of-the-art techniques for computational detection of seven different figurative language categories, mainly on Twitter. For each figurative language category, we present details about the characterizing features, datasets, and state-of-the-art computational detection approaches. Finally, we discuss open challenges and future directions of research for each figurative language category.
... Laughing at the funny things another person says is a way of not only expressing feelings of attraction but also of enhancing one's own attractiveness to the other person (Grammer, 1990). Cann, Calhoun, and Banks (1997) conducted an experiment in which participants were instructed to tell a joke to a same-sex stranger who was actually a confederate. For half the participants, the stranger laughed at the joke and, for the other half, the confederate did not laugh at the joke. ...
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The vast majority of humor research has concentrated on the positive effects that humor bestows upon both physical health and social well-being (Lefcourt, 2001; Martin, 2001). Very little research has focused on the importance of humor in initial romantic attraction or general likeability. Furthermore, nearly all humor research has neglected the role of potentially harmful or detrimental forms of humor, such as sarcasm, derision, and self-deprecation. The present study assessed ratings of general likeability and initial romantic attraction for both adaptive and maladaptive humor styles. Further, the current study investigated whether similarity in humor styles is a significant predictor of general likeability and initial romantic attraction. Overall, adaptive humor styles were rated more attractive and likeable than maladaptive humor styles. However, this result was moderated by a significant similarity effect. Specifically, there were higher levels of initial romantic attraction and likeability when there was a match between the participant’s humor style and the target’s humor style than when there was a discrepancy. Consistent with Byrne’s (1971) similarity attraction hypothesis, the present study demonstrated that similarity in humor styles is a critical determinant in initial romantic attraction, particularly for maladaptive humor styles.
... A social interaction should provoke the perception of the robot as humanlike and alive, while the functional interaction should make people perceive the robot as machinelike and emotionless. To create a social interaction, different insights from classic social science literature are considered, for example self-disclosure [43][44][45] and use of humor [46,47], which were also found to have an influence when interacting with technology (self-disclosure: [19,48,49]; humor: [50]). Previous findings suggest that a social interaction with a robot will enhance the robot's human-likeness and increase its acceptance [4]. ...
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Three studies, conducted with 143 undergraduates, are reported that investigated the hypothesis, long held by theorists, therapists, and laypersons alike, that a sense of humor reduces the deleterious impact of stressful experiences. In each study a negative-life-events checklist was used to predict stress scores on a measure of mood disturbance. These studies made use of different measures of Ss' sense of humor, including 4 self-report scales and 2 behavioral assessments of Ss' ability to produce humor under nonstressful and mildly stressful conditions. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that 5 of the 6 humor measures produced a significant moderating effect on the relation between negative life events and mood disturbance. Ss with low humor scores obtained higher correlations between these 2 variables than did those with high humor scores. Results provide initial evidence for the stress-buffering role of humor. (42 ref)
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Chapter
The relationship between gender and self-disclosure is a topic of research for which some of the clearest predictions have been made, yet some of the most puzzling results have been obtained. In this chapter we review strategies that we and others have used in efforts to solve the puzzle. Our goal is to explore issues that have been addressed in the past and to identify issues that need to be addressed in the future.
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