Saturday, 24 August 2019 18:47

Is saying "I was only joking" after a public statement is criticized an example of poor speech preparation or lack of preparation?

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I see it as being neither.

If anything, to me it is indicative of a speaker who lacks the intestinal fortitude to stand behind what they said in the first place.

Defending himself with “I was only joking” is lame at best. Perhaps in their mind they believe they are mitigating what they have publicly stated. This isn’t true.

In fact, it affects the speaker’s credibility. Once they pull the “I was only joking” card they risk having their audience question anything they were to say in the future.

The only time I see this tactic being effective is if one was to deliver a speech that was so outlandish, that they that they grabbed the audience’s attention and shook them up. The follow-up would be “I was only joking” then provide them the real information which may prove to be even more shocking then the joking portion of the presentation.

 

As originally answered on Quora.com.

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