What’s the Difference Between a Fake Hahaha and a Sincere Guffaw?

You’re Not Fooling Everyone With Your Pretend Laughter

Why do we laugh? The obvious answer is because something is funny. But if we look closer at when and how laughter occurs in ordinary social situations, we see that it’s not so simple. For example, speakers tend to laugh more than listeners, and when people laugh together, often nothing was said at all. Depending on the context, laughter can mean all sorts of things, positive and negative. Like most aspects of human behavior, laughter is complicated.

Scientists are learning about not only the ways in which people hear and …