Within the last day or so, a new debate has sprung up on social media and is spreading like wildfire. If you haven’t already heard (no pun intended), the internet is up in arms over this viral “Yanny” or “Laurel” tweet. Seriously, a four-second sound clip is creating a real divide down the world wide web right now. So, what do you hear? Is it “Yanny,” or is it “Laurel?” There is no right or wrong answer, really. But one thing is for sure: This hot topic is creating utter chaos in cyberspace, as well as amongst friends and family — and I’m shook.
The tweet, which was sent out in the late evening on Monday, May 14, began circulating quickly overnight and on into the day on Tuesday, May 15. According to The New York Times, the viral audio snippet originated in this Reddit thread. But the Twitterverse still has a lot to say about this one. So far, it's been retweeted more than 32,000 times, has over 73,000 likes, and the clip has been played over 7.5 million times.
Take a listen to the audio for yourself. If you haven’t already, send the tweet around to your friends and to see what they think. A word of caution, though: Be prepared to defend your honor, because this trending tweet has the power to split up lifelong friends and break up couples. Well, I’m just kidding about that last part. But this debate is no joke, and it is enough to drive anyone mad.
Only time will tell if this audible dispute is big enough to rival the dress that had internet users up in arms in 2015 over what color it actually was. Gold and white, or black and blue? (For the record, it’s blue and black.) Whatever color you saw, this "Yanny" or "Laurel" controversy is taking social media debates to a whole new level, and I'm already losing sleep over it.
Even celebs are weighing in with their opinion on the soundbite, but that’s not enough to help decide this controversial topic one way or another.
To me, the audio very clearly says “Laurel" — no if, ands, or buts about it. But after a long dispute with my husband and friends — and even playing the clip while sitting in the same room — a handful said they heard “Yanny.” How is this possible? My ears can’t even comprehend it. Clearly, there are “L” and “R” sounds in there. But is anyone really wrong if they hear “Yanny” or “Laurel?” While the ins and outs of the exact science behind it all is still out, according to The New York Times, experts say that whichever name you hear, you are right.
OK, I obviously disagree, but I digress. This is because the sounds in the words “Yanny” and “Laurel” sound very similar. Some say what you hear will depend on the frequency at which you are listening. Well, that doesn’t really solve anything for me. I'm no sound engineer, but I suppose I’ll take comfort in knowing that my hearing isn’t playing tricks on me — or my friends. So remember that little tidbit later today when someone tells you that it's impossible for you to have heard "Yanny" when clearly the clip says "Laurel," or vice versa.
Either way, the internet is not having it.
So, are you Team Yanny or Team Laurel? Or maybe you’re one of those people that can simultaneously hear both. Whatever sound your ears hear, have fun with this one, because it might be another three years before the next "do you hear what I hear" or "do you see what I see" viral clip comes along.