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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old May 24th, 2011, 10:45 PM Thread Starter
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Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

http://health.usnews.com/health-news...y-give-it-away

FRIDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- For the average listener, the vowel sounds in an unfamiliar voice quickly give away the speaker's sexual orientation, a new study finds.

"I'm not sure what exactly the listeners are responding to in the vowel," study lead author Erik C. Tracy, a cognitive psychologist at Ohio State University, said in a news release from the American Institute of Physics. "Other researchers have done various acoustic analyses to understand why gay and heterosexual men produce vowels differently. Whatever this difference is, it seems that listeners are using it to make this sexual orientation decision."

When hearing an unfamiliar voice at the other end of the phone line, most people instantly judge the stranger's characteristics based on how they speak, and the new study suggests listeners are usually pretty accurate in their determination.

"This is a phenomenon that occurs every day," Tracy said. "We are constantly speaking with people we don't know on our phones, and just from this conversation, we might be able to identify personal characteristics about that person, such as their gender, age, race or sexual orientation."

In order to understand how this process works, Tracy and a colleague focused on one characteristic -- sexual orientation. They asked seven gay and seven heterosexual males to record single-syllable words (including "mass," "food" and "sell") and then played the recordings for listeners. The study participants were then asked to identify the sexual orientation of the speakers when hearing only the first letter sound of those words, the first two letter sounds, or the entire words.

The listeners were unable to determine the sexual orientation after hearing the sound of the first letter in the spoken word, for example, just the "m" sound in the word "mass." But, "when presented with the first two letter sounds [for example "ma"], listeners were 75 percent accurate," Tracy said. "We believe that listeners are using the acoustic information contained in vowels to make this sexual orientation decision," he explained.

The findings are scheduled to be presented May 23 in Seattle at the meeting of the Acoustical Society of America. Experts note that research presented at meetings has not been subjected to the same type of rigorous scrutiny given to research published in peer-reviewed medical journals.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old May 24th, 2011, 11:22 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

Really? Funds are being spent on tests like this? Who gives a fuck?

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old May 24th, 2011, 11:23 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

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Who gives a fuck?
Agreed


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old May 24th, 2011, 11:46 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

I've found using the word fabulous too much, is another dead give away.

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old May 24th, 2011, 11:49 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

This new discovery is just as compelling as Lady Gaga's album of the decade Born This Way...INCREDIBLE!
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 01:16 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

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Really? Funds are being spent on tests like this? Who gives a fuck?
Uh well, ya see, uh, yeah.

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 02:32 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

That research is SO gay
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 03:13 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

From a test pool of 7 openly gay males of the variety who volunteer for gay research, listeners were able to successfully identify 5 as gay. Groundbreaking.

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 03:52 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

Hmm strange I would think it's more the consonents that make me able to identify, especially "S"
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 04:08 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

I think this research provides crucial evidence that sexual orientation is genetic, not behavioral.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 04:57 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

I smell something fishy, and I'm not talking about Lindsay Lohan's closet.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 09:34 AM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

I actually think it's fascinating that you can often tell a guy is gay just by how they talk. But this new study doesn't seem very thorough.

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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 12:32 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

Wow. So some people are gay, and most of us have some form of gaydar.

I seriously need to come up with a way to blow a mess of grant money.

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 12:45 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

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Originally Posted by Albireo View Post
I smell something fishy, and I'm not talking about Lindsay Lohan's closet.

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old May 25th, 2011, 05:40 PM
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Re: Straight or Gay? Vowels in Speech May Give it Away

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Wow. So some people are gay, and most of us have some form of gaydar.

I seriously need to come up with a way to blow a mess of grant money.
Actually, I can see how this would be a very worthy line of research... if their methodology is sound, the results are repeatable, etc. etc. But it sounds to me that there are a lot of factors that need to be screened for, and just on the basis of the superficial article here, that doesn't seem to have been done thoroughly. (Much more in-depth reporting would help determine this, for a start.)

"If you practice for ten years, you may begin to please yourself, after 20 years you may become a performer and please the audience, after 30 years you may please even your guru, but you must practice for many more years before you finally become a true artist—then you may please even God." --Ali Akbar Khan, 1922-2009
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