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So It Seems New York Is the Most Talkative State

A man and woman using a telephone booth on the street in New York City, USA, 1995.
Photo: Barbara Alper/Getty Images

Sometimes it seems like you can’t escape the noise of New York. And perhaps there’s a reason why: According to an analysis of more than 2 million phone calls, New Yorkers are the most talkative people in the country. 

Marchex, a market analytics firm, anonymously recorded those calls between 2013 and 2015, then pored over them to figure out the fastest, slowest, and most verbose states in the union. New Yorkers — as in, those from the state of New York — blew away their competition in speech density, using “62 percent more words than someone from Iowa [the fifth least chatty in the country] to have the same conversation with a business,” Marchex said in a press release

The analysis also figured out that the fastest talkers in the nation live in — surprisingly? — Oregon, and the slowest from Mississippi. New Yorkers, on the other hand, spoke 38th fastest in the country.

Interestingly, as The Atlantic pointed out, regional variations show up: The farther north/east a state is, the more likely its residents are to be motormouths, and southern states earn their sweet-drawl stereotype in this data. You might think being a faster talker automatically translates to talking more, but the data indicates otherwise: Speedy talkers are just more efficient in expressing themselves. They don’t use more words; it’s more that they’re quicker at getting out the words they do use.

Fast talkers, unfortunately for them, are often perceived as being vapid blabbermouths, rambling on despite not having much to say — and so perhaps it’s a good thing New Yorkers come in around the middle of the pack when it comes to rate of speech. Who knows — maybe someone in Oregon could’ve gotten the point of this post across faster, and in fewer words. 

So It Seems New York Is the Most Talkative State