I woke up this morning and “Yanny and Laurel” were the trending words on Twitter. Why is this back? The only explanation I can give for this is that people are bored and have run out of things to talk about. And of course, there’s always a lot of engagement around this particular topic. Because people can’t come to an agreement on what they’re hearing. And honestly, I don’t understand how people are hearing “Laurel”. But apparently there’s a scientific explanation behind it.
What do you hear?! Yanny or Laurel pic.twitter.com/jvHhCbMc8I
— Cloe Feldman (@CloeCouture) May 15, 2018
Humans typically pay attention to three different frequencies when they’re listening to speech. Apparently the lowest of the three frequencies is “absolutely essential” for the L’s and R’s — the consonants that make up “Laurel.” “So when you’re listening to ‘Laurel,’ the reason you get L, R, and L is because of the movement of that third frequency,”
The higher frequency sounds in the recording make people hear “Yanny,” whereas the lower frequencies cause others to swear they hear “Laurel.” What word you experience might also have to do with your age. Older adults often start losing their hearing within the higher-frequency range, meaning it’s possible that more young people hear “Yanny.”
Okay, you're not crazy. If you can hear high freqs, you probably hear "yanny", but you *might* hear "laurel". If you can't hear high freqs, you probably hear laurel. Here's what it sounds like without high/low freqs. RT so we can avoid the whole dress situation. #yanny #laurel 🙄 pic.twitter.com/RN71WGyHwe
— Dylan Bennett (@MBoffin) May 16, 2018
There are also other, technical explanations. For example, what you hear might have to do with your speakers, your headphones, or the acoustics in the room. “The main reason (I suspect) people hear this differently is because different headphones and speakers filter the frequencies of the sound in different ways,” tweeted Dana Boebinger, a PhD student at Harvard and MIT who studied auditory perception. She broke the illusion down in a thread.
1/7 Okay dweebs, here’s the science behind that “laurel vs. yanny” thing people keep sending me. It has to do with which frequencies of the sound are actually making it to your brain. This can be affected by several things: headphones / speakers, listening volume, hearing loss…
— Dana Boebinger (@dlboebinger) May 15, 2018
Okay so now that that is explained, can we stop arguing now?
By: Dammy Eneli