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Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Don't be a jerk.
 
Don't be a jerk.
  
There are a lot of comics that don't have set in stone explanations; feel free to put multiple interpretations in the wiki page for each comic.
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There are a lot of comics that don't have set-in-stone explanations; feel free to put multiple interpretations in the wiki page for each comic.
  
 
If you want to talk about a specific comic, use its discussion page.
 
If you want to talk about a specific comic, use its discussion page.

Latest revision as of 23:05, 16 October 2016

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!
We have an explanation for all 1983 xkcd comics, and only 23 (1%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

[edit] Latest comic

Go to this comic explanation

Misinterpretation
"But there are seven billion people in the world! I can't possibly stop to consider how ALL of them might interpret something!" "Ah, yes, there's no middle ground between 'taking personal responsibility for the thoughts and feelings of every single person on Earth' and 'covering your eyes and ears and yelling logically correct statements into the void.' That's a very insightful point and not at all inane."
Title text: "But there are seven billion people in the world! I can't possibly stop to consider how ALL of them might interpret something!" "Ah, yes, there's no middle ground between 'taking personal responsibility for the thoughts and feelings of every single person on Earth' and 'covering your eyes and ears and yelling logically correct statements into the void.' That's a very insightful point and not at all inane."

[edit] Explanation

Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Created by SOMEONE WHO MISINTERPRETED THIS TAG - Please change this comment when editing this page. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.

Cueball is here complaining that people are mad at him because of misinterpretation. However, the off-screen voice sarcastically points out that communication involves work on behalf of the speaker as well as the listener. Cueball claims that he is being "perfectly clear", but if there is room for misinterpretation on behalf of the listener, then he is not.

A similar theme is explored in the title text of 1028: Communication, which notes that "Anyone who says that they're great at communicating but 'people are bad at listening' is confused about how communication works." The title text of 1860: Communicating also asserts that the responsibility of a misunderstanding lies with the speaker, not the listener.

[edit] Transcript

[This single-frame comic shows Cueball sitting at a desk in front of a laptop with his hands above the keyboard indicating he is typing in rage.]
Cueball: Ugh, people are mad at me again because they don't read carefully.
Cueball: I'm being perfectly clear. It's not my fault if everyone misinterprets what I say.
Off-screen voice: Wow, sounds like you're great at communicating, an activity that famously involves just one person.


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