Does Twitter Make Writing TV Comedy Harder?

Do TV writers ever have to scrap jokes because people on Twitter beat them to it? “All. The. Time,” says Weekend Update head writer Alex Baze in a new Fast Company piece containing interviews with several top TV comedy writers about how Twitter affects their jobs. Baze continues, “We were doing a run that scolded global warming deniers that used the line ‘If you’re still denying global warming, you’re the mayor from Jaws.’ I was pretty happy about that joke, written by Pete Schultz, and then about an hour before show time, Gary Janetti tweeted that exact joke, pretty much word for word. We ended up having to cut the whole run for other reasons, but yeah, sometimes you write a joke you really like and then you nervously scan Twitter all day, hoping you don’t see it.” So, knock it off, Twitterers! There are people out there making jokes for actual money, and you’re making it hard on them.

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