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2:18pm on Wednesday, 24th June, 2015:

Unlikely Scenario


I was discussing the sentiment analysis of Twitter feeds with some former students this morning, as you do, and the following scenario came up under the topic of trying to detect the use of sarcasm.

Suppose you're a high-profile and distinguished academic, and you say the following:

"The problem with women in science is that they fall in love with you, you fall in love with them, then they kick up a twitterstorm and force you to resign."

Clearly, this is a joke about the fate of Tim Hunt. Nevertheless, is it something that itself would kick up a twitterstorm and force the academic to resign? After all, the only problem with women in science is that there isn't enough of them, but the above doesn't note that. Maybe the academic would be better off not making the joke at all?

Self-censorship is the worst kind of censorship.

Yes, I am aware that I've used quotes and several layers of framing in an effort to ensure that I'm not enveloped in a twitterstorm myself for raising this question.

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