How do we feel about automated laughter in sitcoms?

It may have gotten to the point where it goes unnoticed, but I think everyone is aware of the automated laughter that takes place in all our favorite sitcoms... I can't go so far as to say it really bothers me, but I'm beginning to wonder what the deal is? Some sitcoms are filmed in a live studio audience. Even in those situations, you will find some kind of screen that tells the audience when to laugh or appluad ensuring that plenty of laughter ends up on the recording...

My questions are as follows...
Does this make the material in these shows any funnier than it actually is?

If they took it out would it feel like something was missing?

If they took It out do you feel like certain jokes would go over people's heads?

Does ensuring that there is always recoded laughter, in any way, mediate between two people who may not find the same things funny?

Is this laughter in anyway insulting to your intelligence?

Why does it only take place in comedies? (You won't hear an automated *gasp*, *oh no he didn't* or *that bitch* in any of your favorite soap operas...)

If there are any questions you think I have missed or have any of your own, feel free to point them out. While this topic may not be incredibly hard hitting or important i'd still like to know what your thoughts are.


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Most Helpful Girl

  • Take comfort in the knowledge that most people on those tracks are now dead.

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    • Well I'm not wishing they were dead by any means, so that comforts me very little. I don't hate it, I just wanna know what they think it adds?

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    • Think it's less aimed at conditioning us as a species, and more at just promoting their show to keep their ratings and thus their cashflow up. But basically yes, monkey see, monkey do. Hearing other laugh encourages us to laugh along, and the act of laughing does affect our brain chemistry, even if the show itself isn't all that funny.

    • Good point! Thanks for your opinion Saccharissa! I enjoyed it.

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What Girls Said 3

  • For me personally I think most sitcoms nowadays are stupid and unfunny, those sitcoms don't have laugh tracks. Most of the funny ones that I liked did have laugh tracks, so maybe it makes the sitcom better. I don't know but I prefer it.

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    • Give me an example of one nowadays that doesn't have em? I'm curious to go back and see what I think.

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    • In my free time, which I have very little of, I play a lot of games. If I want to watch something it seems like it's all about Netflix these days... Why not just get internet. Wading through that many commercials has become a tiring event, whether you have a DVR or not.

  • Finally someone who understands!! I don't watch comedy because of this.

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    • I have the ability to ignore it if I want to, and it doesn't ruin it for me, but it's been a part of every sitcom I have ever watched... I just wanna know why? At this point I wanna see one without it just so I can compare... Maybe taking it all out would add a too much of a serious overtone...

    • I watch live comedy shows. There have been some jokes where we didn't know it was a joke shortly followed by booing and get off the stage. But I do think sitcoms put it in there to show when its suppose to be funny. It does come in handy when I watch it alone. It feels like you're laughing with somebody. But yeah never thought of it as deep as you have 😂

  • Annoying for the most part

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What Guys Said 1

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