People like talking about other people. If it pertains to people who matter and people who you care about - may be that is pardonable.
However, people talk about other people who really do not matter to them.
It's fun to listen to.
Another case: Dude talking about the derivatives class. "People have got so badly burnt in derivatives; it all depends on luck. You know, derivatives is like playing poker with sharks. One day you will definitely get killed."
I laugh in my head.