Viewers of Good Morning Britain were left shocked when a guest claimed clapping should be banned.
Journalist Ellen Scott appeared on Thursday's show to debate the issue with comedian Andrew Doyle after the Oxford University Student Union became the latest group to ban clapping and replace it with jazz hands to respect those who get upset or anxious by loud noises.
Ellen said she believes if clapping "upsets" people then we should ban it.
Should clapping be banned? @EllenCScott says theatres should swap clapping for 'jazz hands' to be more 'inclusive' to those with anxiety or sensitivity to loud sounds.
What do you think?#GMB pic.twitter.com/Bc5WHBbOpn
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) November 7, 2019
Ellen said: "It's not just for people who have anxiety, but also for people with hearing aids, people who have sensory-processing issues, it can be very distressing and overwhelming.
"If some theatres and some universities say, 'actually we're going to be more inclusive and do jazz hands instead,' then that would be lovely."
Host Susanna Reid pointed out that clapping is "part of our culture" and asked whether there would be a penalty to anyone who chooses to clap.
Ellen said: "I don't think there's going to be a penalty. I don’t think anyone is going to say, 'you need to leave.' But if you were persisting with clapping, even though you have been requested to do something else, that’s not very polite is it?"
However, Andrew didn't agree and said it was wrong to change society's norms to "accommodate the sensibilities of a few people".
He said: "It’s not just about the jazz hands and the clapping thing, it’s about the broader culture. It’s about a broader attempt to infantalise our student body.
This is getting beyond ridiculous now!
"It ties into things like trigger warnings and safe spaces, to basically coddle students, when actually what university is about is educating them for life in the real world.
"In the real world, people are going to be applauding in theatres, at sports events. If you talk to any major sports person they will tell you that it’s the applause that keeps them going."
He added: "One of the things that really annoys me about this is it enables people to paint students as these weak fragile snowflakes. Actually, it's a minority of students, who tend to do into student politics who like throwing their weight around."
Viewers were divided over the issue, with many branding the idea of banning clapping "ridiculous" and "nonsense".
One person said on Twitter: "This is getting beyond ridiculous now!" while another wrote: "What is this world coming too? Wanting to ban clapping? People are not happy unless they are being offended these days!!"
A third tweeted: "I have Aspergers Syndrome (a form of Autism) and I don't think clapping should be banned.
"I don't want people like me to get a bad name for ruining other people's fun. My personal solution is to just avoid places where loud noises occur. #gmb #autism #actuallyautistic."
No! This is getting beyond ridiculous now!
— Wendy Stephen 🇬🇧 (@WendyStephen8) November 7, 2019
What is this world coming too? Wanting to ban clapping? People are not happy unless they are being offended these days!! #GMB
— Nikki Webber (@Nikki_Webs) November 7, 2019
@GMB I have Aspergers Syndrome (a form of Autism) and I don't think clapping should be banned. I don't want people like me to get a bad name for ruining other people's fun. My personal solution is to just avoid places where loud noises occur. #gmb #autism #actuallyautistic
— LUFC Chess (@LUFCchess) November 7, 2019
#gmb they want to ban clapping & have jazz hands instead?! The world has gone mad!! May as well start banning smiling...they need to concentrate on sorting knife crime and gun crime instead of coming up with stupid things like this!!🤬😡😠
— Ａ Ｂ Ｂ Ｉ Ｄ Ｒ Ｕ Ｒ Ｙ (@abbidrury) November 7, 2019
One viewer did agree with Ellen.
They wrote: "I am so encouraged by students thinking about introducing jazz hands instead of clapping. MSM calls it a 'ban' but it's progress to me... we CAN change."
I am so encouraged by students thinking about introducing jazz hands instead of clapping. MSM calls it a 'ban' but it's progress to me... we CAN change. #GMB
— Su Johnston (@su_jo) November 7, 2019
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