Culture&Arts

Laurel Vs. Yanny Debate Divides America

Laurel Vs. Yanny Debate Divides America

Why would people hear two totally different words?

It's a debate that's been tearing the internet apart, at least this week: A piece of audio posted across social media sounds like "Laurel" to some people, and "Yanny" to others.

Now Playing: Watch this: Yanny or Laurel?

Give it a listen.

Do you hear what I hear?




Story analyzed the acoustic features of the words "Yanny" and "Laurel". "However, there is a significant difference in the second and third resonances of the two words, which is how humans interpret the words", she said. "If you lose the high frequencies, the illusion goes away".

They said older adults tend to start losing their hearing at the higher frequency ranges.

JJ heard Yanny but thanks to his little brother Derek, he hears Laurel. But others have said it's just a simple case of bass versus treble: If you happen to pick up bass tones more, you hear "Laurel". It is known that some sounds are audible only to people under 25. She said she heard laurel. Where this does matter, she says, and where similar issues are at play, is how people fill in the gaps of their hearing when faced with a noisy context.

It can also depend on what you're listening to the clip on and where you're listening, McCreery said. Amid the background noise, you're able to focus on what your dining partner is saying.


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