Sarcasm Doesn’t Translate Well to Blogs and Other Social Media – August 8, 2019

When looking for a particular post topic, I came across a blog I don’t follow. I won’t mention the blog as I don’t remember its name and I didn’t review other posts on it. The blog title sounded interesting as possibly being true, but more likely being not true. After seeing enough people around the planet who take things at face value, it may have been a parody blog or not. I didn’t check out the rest of the blog to see if I could easily find out. I expect a lot of readers saw the blog and took it as face value, thinking it was true. I  imagine the blogger is going to get some flack from those who didn’t get the obvious sarcasm.

The biggest problem with the post was that it dripped with subtle sarcasm. As someone who is very familiar with sarcasm, from both sides of the lens. I try not to give out sarcasm as I am not a fan of receiving sarcasm. On my blog, I rarely do sarcasm and if I do, it’s usually because I wasn’t paying enough attention to catch sarcasm slipping in.

The problem with online sarcasm is you can’t always tell if it’s sarcasm. For example, LOL and smiley faces may denote the person is poking fun, but enough people use them as sarcasm so there’s no easy way to tell how it’s being used unless you know the person. Addit: I would say in person sarcasm doesn’t always translate well.

For those who know me personally, either online or in person, some will pull my leg with humor or sarcasm and I can give a straight-faced deadpan response where they think I’m being serious. Then, they confess the joke and I confess I was joking as well.

My sense of sarcasm developed as a self-defense method. I was bullied a lot as a child. If you ever saw the Charles Atlas ads about the “97-pound weakling” (44 kg) –, that was me although I could never afford the price of the program. I wore the black framed Coke bottle glasses at the time. That was long before Drew Carey made those glasses look cool. For some reasons, those who bullied me didn’t get sarcasm if done correctly, and I was good at making it sound like it wasn’t sarcasm. It frequently saved me from getting beat up as they didn’t get it. If they had, it would have been worse for me.

Another thing that made it somewhat easier was when I was awarded awards in Junior High (think Middle School if you don’t get the Junior High reference) – in 7th and 9th Grades, I got the highest GPA and in 8th Grade, I got the second highest GPA. The smarter bullies backed off as they assumed I could get them back in some way that they couldn’t counter. I never indicated such to them, but the amount of bullying dropped by about half in Junior High and High School after getting the awards. For the other bullies, it didn’t make a difference.


About ICT Genealogist

Originally from Gulfport, Mississippi. Live in Wichita, Kansas now. Let's
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