In a week with a lot of talking points, none have perhaps been as big as the debate that raged over whether some dumb voice recording was actually saying ‘Laurel’ or ‘Yanny’. Never mind that Yanny isn’t actually a word, people were going absolutely crazy about it and shouting at each other as they refused to believe that someone could be hearing something different to them. May 2018 people.
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No matter what you hear – I think the first time I listened to it I heard ‘Yanny’ but then after a few more I could only hear ‘Laurel’ – there’s only one man who can clearly define what is actually going on with the word and that’s the guy who said it in the first place. It turns out that his name is Jay Aubrey Jones and he’s a 64-year-old Broadway actor and singer, who recorded the killer word back in 2007 as part of 36,000 words for Vocabulary.com – great work if you can get it.
The word in question went viral when a student realised he could hear both ‘pronunciations’ (for lack of a better phrase) of it when he played it back, but now Jones has piped up to tell us exactly what he originally said when he made the recording:
I said Laurel.
I recorded my batch of words and I thought that was that.
I thought, well, it couldn’t be that huge. Then I heard the recording again online and I realised what a brouhaha this whole thing was.
More often than not, I hear laurel. I can hear a slight trace of yanny.
There you have it. Debate settled – it’s actually Laurel. That’s what I said all along.
Now, we can all forget about this ever happening and anyone who thought it was ‘Yanny’ can go sit in the corner and hang their head in shame. You were wrong.
For more of the same, check out what Janice from Friends’ voice sounds like in real life. Very different.