Yanny or Laurel?


Timon Penna and Justin Irvolino

Recently, there was a trend that contained an automated voice playing a word.

The question was if the word being said was yanny or laurel? In fact the word is really the mixed re-recording that was created by students who played the sound of the word “laurel” while re-recording the playback amid background noise in the room. 53% of over 500,000 people reported hearing the word Laurel and 47% reported hearing yanny.

On May 11, Katie Hetzel, a freshman that attends Flowery Branch High School in Georgia, was working in her class, where “laurel” was one of her vocab words. She looked it up on Vocabulary.com and played the audio. Instead of the word in front of her, she heard “yanny.” She kept asking the other kids about it and it went viral.

Soon enough, yanny and laurel became an internet meme and an audit illusion, confusing the minds of people around the world.

What did you hear?