ChatGPT outperforms humans in joke telling, study shows

In this post:

  • A study reveals that the jokes produced by ChatGPT were funnier than those created by humans.
  • The study compared AI and human-produced humor in different tasks.
  • ChatGPT was able to reproduce humor similar to that of professional humor writers from The Onion.

A recent study has revealed that artificial intelligence, specifically ChatGPT, can generate funnier jokes than an individual can. The research, published in the journal PLOS ONE, explored participants’ reactions to jokes written by both ChatGPT 3.5 and people. 

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The aim of the study was to assess whether AI is capable of matching or even beating human beings in humor, according to a statement by Drew Gorenz, a Ph. D. student in social psychology at the University of Southern California’s Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. 

Researchers compare ChatGPT and human humor skills

The first part of the study was to determine the funniness of jokes that were created by regular people and those created by ChatGPT. The participants were asked to rate the jokes without being informed of the identity of the joke teller. It was discovered that 68.2% of participants considered the ChatGPT jokes to be funnier than the written jokes of humans. Out of the subjects, 25% said they liked human-generated jokes, and only 5% said that jokes from both sources were equally funny. The same trends were observed irrespective of the subjects’ age, gender, marital status, or level of education. 

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For the second experiment, the researchers wanted to see how ChatGPT would fare against the actual humor writers. They told ChatGPT to generate new headlines in a satirical tone like The Onion News. A second set of 200 people were then asked to rate the funniness of original Onion headlines and the newly generated ones by ChatGPT. Participants were equally amused by the ChatGPT headlines as they were by the original Onion headlines.

For the first study, both ChatGPT and 105 participants were asked to engage in three tasks related to humor generation. They came up with new phrases based on the already popular abbreviations and jokes for the roast based on the awkward situations in the fiction. These tasks led to the generation of more than 945 jokes by human beings and 180 jokes by ChatGPT. The participants then rated the humor level of these jokes, and it was found that ChatGPT generated funnier jokes on average. 

“Since ChatGPT can’t feel emotions itself, but it tells novel jokes better than the average human, these studies provide evidence that you don’t need to feel the emotions of appreciating a good joke to tell a really good one yourself.”

Drew Gorenz

AI matches professional satirists in headline creation

The second study presented ChatGPT with original Onion headlines and asked it to create new ones with the same tone. These new headlines were also seen as humorous by the participants, and the humor was on par with that of the original headlines, indicating that AI can create satire as well as human humor writers.  Additionally, the latest writer’s and actors’ strike in Hollywood proves how LLMs pose threats to writers’ and actors’ professions as well as their creativity. 

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“The implications are more positive for people who merely want to reap the benefits of elevating their everyday communications with a dose of humor. But for professional comedy writers, our results suggest that LLMs can pose a serious employment threat.”


The research brings up several questions on the further development of AI in the sphere of entertainment. It is noteworthy that AI has the potential to produce humour, which raises questions regarding its effect on human creativity and employment in comedy scripting. 

Cryptopolitan Reporting by Brenda Kanana

Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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