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'Do You Hear Yanny or Laurel?' Is the New Dress

Another black magic bit of internet is going around, and, well, just listen.

OK, I’m as pissed off as you are about this, but trust me—listen to the video in the tweet below.

After a co-worker sent this to me in Slack, I heard “Yanny.” No doubt about it. I played it dozens of times in row: “Yanny. Yanny. Yanny,” said a mechanical voice into my headphones over and over. I figured I was being trolled, and went about my business.

But after working for a few minutes, I returned to the video, and gave it another idle click.


“Laurel,” said the voice into the ether. “Laurel.” Oh noooooooooooooo.

Yes, it turns out there is actually something strange going on in this audio clip. According to hundreds of replies to the tweet and a Reddit thread, some people hear “Laurel,” some hear “Yanny,” and some, like me, hear “Yanny” before hearing “Laurel.” (No one appears to go from Laurel to Yanny.)

There are a flurry of theories about why people are hearing this thing differently, some involving sound frequencies and shit like that. You might also be hearing the sound of web editors worldwide rushing to post articles about the tweet, hoping it leads to a traffic bonanza on par with “the Dress.” This guy breaks down one explanation in the video below, but I don’t think we have a conclusive answer yet.

According to my friend Jake Cheriff, who is a professional sound engineer, the audio clip “must have the same overtones or something.” I’ll update the post if he decides to explain that further.

Do you have any idea what’s going on here? Drop me a line on Twitter.

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