Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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The larger the audience, the more careful you have to be with your words.

When you’re hanging out with a small group of close friends, you can say anything ridiculous and irresponsible and it’s fine, your friends can call you out on it.

When you’re a commencement speaker you need to be more careful with what you say, even jokingly. Since you’re talking to a large number of impressionable youths, there’s a good chance someone will misinterpret what you say.

When you’re the head of a company, you have to be more careful with what you say, even jokingly. Your employees will have a tendency to interpret your words as company policy, and bad jokes in public can affect your company or its stock price.

When you’re the head of an entire country, you have to be more careful with what you say, even jokingly. The larger the audience, the more likely there are people who will take your rape jokes to mean rape is okay. The larger the audience, the more likely there are people who will take any inaccuracies you spout as fact. The larger the audience, the more likely there are police officers who will take your statements to ignore human rights seriously. The larger the audience, the more likely there is someone mentally unstable enough to consider attacking those you claim are enemies of the state.

The larger your audience, the more responsible you should be.

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roytang.net is a personal site, an E/N site, and kind of a commonplace book; I post about a random assortment of topics that interest me including software development, Magic the Gathering, pop culture, gaming, and tech life. This site is perpetually under renovation.