I am referring to this:
Could a joke be funny enough to kill?

Please discuss.

I actually liked this question. We don't see much describing its placement in its world, but it was my understanding that most people here didn't need for such information to be presented up–front.
Does it seem like the asker is fishing for people to do the work of story–writing for them?
Maybe. As it is now, methinks that would be obvious only with the finished product.
If the plot device is just a throwaway to contrive some tension, then yes. Perhaps the author has several clever ideas and a clear progression of character, whether a lethal joke is possible or however it could actually work, but they simply want to know if the core premise is plausible prior to proceeding.
Maybe they know social psychology well but not physiology.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I also quite like that question and it seems perfectly reasonable, even though the main flaws in the concept are addressed in the sketch $\endgroup$
    – Separatrix
    Commented May 31, 2017 at 11:38
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    $\begingroup$ I'm guessing that people saw it as instinctively nonsense, and so their tolerance of what is considered to be on-topic was a lot less. No proof, just a gut feeling. $\endgroup$
    – Ranger
    Commented May 31, 2017 at 13:23
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I note that the question currently has three reopen votes, needing two more to be reopened. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Commented May 31, 2017 at 13:33
  • $\begingroup$ For what it's worth, the question has since been reopened. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    Commented May 31, 2017 at 14:27
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    $\begingroup$ <"Author" here> If you'd like to take my word for it: 1) No, I'm not writing a story. 2) I originally planned on asking this at the Health.SE, but given the question title, people would've closed it without giving it a read. 3) I'm actually looking for a "physiology-based" answer (I'm a student of Biology). 4) This was just a curiosity question. ;) $\endgroup$ Commented May 31, 2017 at 14:30
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    $\begingroup$ @paracetamol From what I understand: So as to broaden the utility of this Stack Exchange, intending to use the world–design in any publishable product is not a requirement. So, although there are a few classes of What–Ifs and I'm–Curious–Abouts that are off-topic, questions motivated by mere curiosity are allowed if they fit all of the other requirements. Although the asker is not planning to use it in a story — or game or LARP or television serial, — someone else could. And, yes, asking it here rather than Health was probably the better way to go. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 1, 2017 at 4:47
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    $\begingroup$ @can-ned_food Correct. Actually, one of the few sites on the network where what you are going to use the answer for is a criteria for closure is Server Fault. (The way to get around that is to carefully work the question into a form that could fall into their scope, and keep it to yourself whether you plan to actually implement suggestions at home or at work. That has worked for me.) It's fine to ask questions on Worldbuilding that are motivated by mere curiosity, as long as the same question would be on topic if you were asking it because you are building a world and need help with that aspect. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Commented Jun 1, 2017 at 13:22

1 Answer 1


The question has been re-opened.
Seems that there is little need for further discussion.

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    $\begingroup$ I'd still like to hear the reasons from the original close voters perspectives. $\endgroup$
    – apaul
    Commented Jun 1, 2017 at 21:00

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