Men funnier than women? UCSD study says yes - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Men funnier than women? UCSD study says yes

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LA JOLLA (CNS) - Did you hear the one about the psychology study that proved men were funnier than women? No joke, it was released by UC San Diego Wednesday.

The study included a pair of experiments that determined men were indeed more capable of inducing laughter, but only by a small margin.

Also, the male sense of humor was found more acceptable to other men, according to the study, published in the journal Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.

In one of the experiments used in the study, 16 male and 16 female undergraduate students were ordered to write the funniest captions possible for 20 New Yorker cartoons.

After 34 male and 47 female undergraduates rated the cartoons, the young men who wrote captions were judged to be an average of 0.11 points funnier than the young women, according to the study. Also, the male viewers of the cartoons gave an average of 0.16 points more to the male writers, while women allocated only an average 0.06 bonus to the male writers.

"Sad for the guys who think that by being funny they will impress the ladies, but really just impress other men who want to impress the ladies," said Nicholas Christenfeld, a UCSD psychology professor and co-author.

The lead author was psychology post-doctoral researcher Laura Mickes, while Robert Mankoff, cartoon editor for The New Yorker, also participated.


The second experiment found that participants often misidentified whether captions were written by men or women.

Another finding was that, on a scale of 1-5, the male writers thought their captions would rate a 2.3, and the women a 1.5 -- a margin in self-confidence that ended up being wider than actual results.

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